How to Tick Some of the Boxes with your Online Store
PACK & SEND loves supporting ecompreneurs offering a wide range of shipping and logistics options for local and international retailers. Whether you’re a Trade Me Top Seller or an eBay expert we now have even more competitive pricing to send your goods all over the globe with Online Book & Pay. As a regular sender you can manage and track your consignments via our PowerSender portal, whether you’re sending one package or one hundred Online Book & Pay saves you time and money. You pack & print and we’ll pick up taking your business to the world using our local and international courier services! See our tips in this article to make the most of your ecommerce business.
Why use ‘Online Book & Pay’ and Register as a PowerSender?
- It’s free to join and gives you access to extended Online Self-Service solutions – get an instant quote and book your deliveries via Book & Pay
- Domestic, Export and Import parcel delivery services
- Conveniently send identical parcels to repeat customers
- Manage addresses – every time you enter a new address for delivery, you can save it too (for when your customer returns all going well!)
- Import contacts & addresses from your existing database
- Access to your complete shipment history data
- Access to an Online Postage Calculator that can be added to any website or eBay listing.
Get the Fundamentals right early on with your eCom Business
Building a successful online business can be a challenge, there’s usually a long road ahead despite the success stories you hear from internet marketers posing by their ferraris! Spend the time building a solid foundation so you don’t have to do all the hard yards with little ROI to show for it months later – the real winners know their market, where to find them and how to deliver the perfect product right to their fingertips . They formulate a business and marketing strategy, pay attention to the numbers and focus on bringing torrents of relevant traffic to their audience – all with sales conversions in mind, of course.
It’s said that 9 out of 10 start-ups fall on their butts however if you think you have a hungry market for your products it’s time to put failure out of your mind, take the leap and solider on. Don’t be afraid to seek advice from those who’ve genuinely carved a successful eCom path so consider consulting an experienced mentor. Aside from the odd rare story of eCom entrepreneurs becoming basically millionaires overnight, lay out realistic goals, work hard and be patient or you’ll set yourself up for disappointment.
Sort your systems, carefully research and source the right items to sell and find the ideal platform/s to market your wares, then find the best low cost shipping service and you’re basically there. Be agile and don’t give up if some things don’t work, experiment, demand and trends are fluid so treat your business that way and adapt when required. There’s no fast start formula but we’ll give you some tips to help get you humming.
Set your sights high and wide, the world is totally geared up now for global ecommerce so take advantage of the huge amount of resources available to you. If you’re on a shoe-string we recommend that you test your product in your home country then scale up however your audience and demand can change from place to place. There is certainly No Limits to Logistics these days and freight carriers can deliver your product almost anywhere!
Seek an Unexploited Market and Milk It!
It’s a trick for young players but the real eCom masters don’t find the product and then the market, savvy entrepreneurs find an untapped niche and then develop or source superb products that have the potential to fly off their virtual shelves. Keep an eye out online, with friends and work colleagues, groups and forums etc and get a feel for what the market really wants, not just needs. There are also various tools and websites to help you research trends and monitor internet searches.
- Listen to potential buyers by reading online reviews, searching social media and reading forums
- Perform keyword research to find popular queries where you can see a gap in the market with supply
- Who are your competitors? What are their weaknesses, can you make a similar product that’s even better?
- Rather than selling the same thing (think iPhone cases!) and cutting prices to compete (a race to the bottom) look for niche items that people really desire, or predict the next big thing – if you’re really clever!
Traffic & Content is King
Website traffic is the soul of every online business but so is getting your online business right from the get go. It’s a volume game, a healthy dose of website visitors gets more eyes on your store and product/s. Generating sales is your live blood but your bottom line rides on the amount of people landing on your website, how desirable your product offering is and building trust with potential purchasers so that they purchase.
Memorable, uncomplicated, quirky, entertaining content works a trick. Keep your copy punchy and simple to understand while having a bit of fun. Imagery needs to be clear, attractive and must create desire or curiousity. Consider Search Engine Optimisation too with relevant wording, so people can find your product more easily.
- Spend time on a compelling headline that arouses the viewer
- Point out a problem/pain point, ask common questions around this and state how you can give them a solution
- Create an offer that’s super hard to resist!
- Establish credibility positioning yourself as an authority in this area
- Create a sense of urgency, if this doesn’t come across as authentic focus on your call-to-action
- Market endorsements and reviews from happy buyers to build trust and boost conversion rates
- Utilise SEO, paid ads, social media, high volume eCom selling sites, forums, influencers, communities and groups related to your market niche to draw traffic to your website or listings
Build a Slick Website or Sell on a Top Ecom Platform
Ideally get a professional, clean looking responsive website built for you and treat it like a physical store. Visitors will judge a book by it’s cover, provide a poor landing experience and you’ll lose your potential customer forever. Make sure the loading speed is fast, the user interface is simple and easy to navigate and add a home page hook to grab attention of the visitor to reel them in. Alternatively sign up as a seller on a well known, reputable high volume retail platform where people are actively looking for what they want and have trust already in the website, payment gateway and shipping options. Get your virtual presence spot on and the buyers will find your products!
Influencer marketing (while losing its lustre more now that people are aware of the extent of exorbitantly paid celeb posts!) still has merit. It can be the fastest way to build trust, brand image and customer engagement for your business. You can get good bang for your buck if you find an influencer who’s followers closely reflect your target market. Just make sure you set a budget, test and measure leads or sales from your promotion and be strategic about your objectives with this method of marketing.
Socialise to Sell
Social commerce can add steroids to your business when you nurture your market through social media, relevant groups, communities, cultures and forums. If you provide value to your community, niche products are way easier to move. Social selling may not always be enough on its own so think of it as another arm to your ecom platform/s. There’s no quick way to the top but doing paid advertising will catapult you ahead, just keep an eye on your advertising budgets and ROI.
Query the KPI’s
Your Key Performance Indicators convey the success of your business and the direction it’s going in and whether your ecom venture is profitable. Consider and measure:
- Web or eCom store traffic
- Average time spent on site (is your site sticky or are people scampering fast?)
- Conversion rate
- Referrers ie. Google, influencers, eBay/Amazon, Instagram ads
- Cart abandonment rate
- Average order value and quantity
- Return on investment
Buy Cheap, Sell Dear & Factor in the Fees
We’re stating the obvious but consider buying enough volume to bring your unit costs down keeping in mind your projected traffic, conversion rates and sales. Also think about white labelling your product and changing it slightly so you could potentially add a premium to your product. Often lower price items are easier to sell higher volumes and vice versa. Don’t sell products that everyone’s selling and that are easy to source. Spend time on product research, go to various trade shows and visit various suppliers when possible. You may even be able to secure exclusive distribution arrangements in your country providing you have an impressive sales history with similar items. Take in to account all of your expenses including importing and selling & shipping fees and seek help from outsourcers such as designers or copywriters. Using platforms such as Amazon FBA can save you cash and hours on your fulfillment.
Find a ‘ship hot’ Courier Service
PACK & SEND have a new Online Book & Pay platform which can also help you with managing your customer base. If you have products that weight under 30kg and are valued less than $1000 this is ideal for regular senders to save when sending to customers worldwide. We help Trade Me Top Sellers ship products every day and now offer very competitive courier rates for smaller items. If you sell larger, fragile or valuable products visit your closest PACK & SEND service centre to find out more about our wide range of shipping services.
PACK & SEND helps Entrepreneurs Every Day
Starting small or expanding? PACK & SEND can assist with all of your ecommerce or bricks and mortar requirements with our local and international courier services. Find out more about how we can help you with your business logistics here or get a quote on your next shipment.