As we cover in our guide to the e-Commerce planning process, it’s important to understand what needs to happen from the online shopper point of view when it comes to selling.
First off, you need to have clear digital media activities where you can make potential shoppers aware of your products, designs and your store.
You need to be clear who the potential shoppers are with market research, even if only secondary research. And you need to be able to create advertising that will generate interest in the products.
You have the most influence on the online shopper experience here, because you control the marketing activity. But, remember, you also pay for that marketing activity. So, it’s important to work out the different costs within your online store business model that come into play to make sure you stay profitable.
What options do you have to play with?
When you sell through marketplaces or print on demand sellers, as we’ve discussed already, you can make some adjustments to how the actual store and product pages look and what they say.
You can set product names, images and product descriptions. And you can usually make some adjustments to price, and what products are available, such as which colours or sizes you will set. But your options to influence other parts of the e-Commerce experience are limited in both these channels.
With Print on Demand suppliers for example, they manage payments and deliveries. They also manage the quality of the base products and of the printing.
You have no control over the quality of the actual product they produce, just the design. And, as every other designer who sells through that Print on Demand supplier accesses the same back-end systems as you, there’s no way to make yourself stand out here. Your only point of difference is in the marketing and the designs.
When you dropship or manage the whole online store system yourself, you can control how payments and deliveries work. You can add extra services that can make your overall offer different and more attractive. So faster, or cheaper delivery options for example, or deferred payment options.
We cover these sorts of e-Commerce selling techniques and sources of competitive advantage in our guide to how to get more sales online. You can read more there about how to use marketing, UX, pricing and delivery to sell better online.