Here are two impressive statistics on online businesses:
- 4.5 million new online businesses were started in 2020 in the US
- 36% of all businesses now make their sales online.
Back in the day, only a privileged few could start a business. Capital had to be significant, and outside funding was scarce. But that’s no longer the case today. Anyone can start a business and build it into a huge company regardless of their past entrepreneurial experience or professional background.
The entry barrier for entrepreneurship has gotten lower, but it’s not fully gone. You still need a viable product idea, a great sourcing or manufacturing strategy, and a perfect sales model. Here’s how to build a successful online business.
Carry Out Market Research
Without customers, you have no business. Carry out extensive market research before launching your online company. You’ll know who your customer is, their buying behaviour, and where they currently shop. This will help you create a Unique Sales Proposition (USP). A good USP helps your customers truly understand the value offered by your company’s products and services. They see how your services benefit them. For example, if you’re looking to start a business selling cell phones, you could sell Apple Refurbished phones and find marketplaces to resell them on.
Know Your Customer
Find out your customers’ needs and pain points so you can customize your offerings. Most companies focus on innovation and ignore customer needs. But here’s the thing, customer-focused companies are 60% more profitable. When you understand customers better, you align products to create great value. There’s no way you can persuade consumers to buy from you if you don’t know their needs. Design an Easy-to-Use Website
88% of Americans don’t like brands with poorly performing websites and mobile apps. Businesses with user-friendly websites sell more—customers now buy cars online and other expensive products. Almost 30% of U.S. new car sales in 2021 were completed online. A user-friendly website will increase your web traffic. Remember, you have less than five seconds to grab someone’s attention. If you don’t, they will leave your site, never to be seen again. Make navigation clear and simple, and make every page easy to find.
Your website is your online storefront, so make it easy for customers to buy. There should be no more than two clicks to checkout. You can also include an opt-in offer, collect e-mail addresses, and sell to customers via email.
Market Your Business Extensively
Marketing makes customers aware of your products and helps them make an informed buying decision. The more you market your business, the more you create and maintain demand for your products. You also build your reputation and stand out from the competition. Online marketing helps you get higher-quality traffic. You can target prospects based on different characteristics. Here are some ways to market your business online:
- Register your business with Google—it’s the new yellow pages
- Build a strong social media presence
- Create a great content marketing strategy
- Pay for social media and search engine ads
- Optimize your website for search engines
- Get involved in online communities in your industry
- Create press releases
- Use high-quality visuals
There you have it! Follow our tips and build a successful online business. Succeed where others have failed.