With the Storbie website builder, it is extremely easy to build your own ecommerce website and start selling online. However, as with any project, it’s useful to have some guidelines and a plan to follow to help you get there. Here are our 5 top tips for getting started with our ecommerce website builder. We also suggest you read the Storbie Quick Set up Guide for step-by-step instructions to follow when creating your online store.
Tip #1: Have a clear plan for what you are going to sell online
Before even creating your online store, it’s essential that you are clear in what you are going to sell online and what makes your products or services unique. This forms the basis of your value proposition. Whether you already have a great product idea, or you’re an entrepreneur looking for a golden opportunity, you may find it useful to answer the following questions:
- What opportunities can you exploit?
- What market niche can you service?
- What customer pain point or passion can you cater to?
- What are you good at or what do you have experience in?
- What trends can you leverage?
Answering these questions will help you decide what to sell online. You’ll also hopefully be able to succinctly describe your business, your ideal customer and what makes your products or services unique – which brings us to tip #2.
Tip #2: Invest time in writing: value proposition, brand story and product descriptions
Now that you know what you are selling, why you are doing it, and why your customers should care, this is a good time to put all of that into writing in a way in which you would publish it on your website.
Your value proposition should clearly describe the value that you are providing to customers and why they should buy from you instead of a competitor. This is your competitive advantage. To learn more about how to write a great value proposition, check out this HubSpot article which includes a handy infographic from QuickSprout.
From here, you can then start developing your brand story. What exactly is a brand story? Jane Hope from EchoStories defines a brand story as “a cohesive narrative that encompasses the facts and feelings that are created by your brand or business”. A brand story is much more than the narrative alone, however this is a good place to start influencing customer perception and building a complete picture of your brand in their eyes. For more on the topic of how to write a powerful brand story, take a look at this Inc.com article by John Cinquina, CEO of Red Meets Blue Branding.
One destination for your brand story is the ‘About Us’ page of your website. This is typically a very high traffic page of any website so it should be well-considered. Read our article about how to build trust and create appeal through an ‘About Us’ page.
The tone and language that you use in your brand story can then flow into other parts of your online store, for example all of your product descriptions. Take a look at this article to understand the importance of product descriptions for growing sales.
Tip #3: Invest time in professional and consistent imagery
We can’t stress enough the importance of good-looking imagery when it comes to designing and building your own successful online store. In fact, we’ve written a bunch of guides on that very topic. Read these articles to help you create beautiful imagery for your ecommerce website:
As online customers can not physically see or touch your products before purchasing, it is important that your online store images not only show off your products in their best light, but also empower shoppers to make informed purchasing decisions.
Tip #4: Keep your product data tidy
Now for the bread and butter – getting your products into your online store. When you reach this point, we suggest that you start small; you may wish to only upload a sample of your products and begin selling those online as you learn more about managing your own ecommerce store and online inventory.
To upload or edit multiple products at once, you can use the Storbie website builder ecommerce product import and export . Start by reading the product management articles in our Storbie Support Centre and downloading the sample product csv file to fill out with your product data. If you need further help with importing or exporting products, get in touch with the Storbie Support Team and they will be happy to help!
Tip #5: Launch your website to start benefiting from search engine ranking
Our top tip is to remember that your online store doesn’t need to be 100% complete or perfect down to every detail before you can launch it online and start telling people about it (even if the only person you tell is your mum!). The benefit of this is that you can also notify Google of your new website and start building up your search engine ranking as you continue to add more and more content.
Here are 5 simple things you can do after launching your online store to help your website rank in Google:
- Add Google Analytics to your website. Here’s how.
- Verify your website in Google Webmaster Tools via the Site Verifications page in the Settings area of Storbie.
- Promote your new ecommerce store via social media and email marketing to build traffic and help Google find it.
- Start writing a blog on your website to produce useful content – content which Google will also notice. Remember to include keywords that you think your customers will be searching for!
- Build links to your website from other high quality and relevant sites – offer to put a link on your shop to another site if they will do the same for you.
With these things in place, Google will be able to find and index the information on your website to appear in search results. This can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks but the more work you do to promote your online store and optimise it for search engines earlier on, the quicker you will appear.
Ready to start marketing your ecommerce store? Check out our Marketing Guide here.