Ecommerce business is not for the faint of heart, knowledge and experience are prerequisites to make it a success. Going in blind without a plan or strategy is not recommended, and will probably end in disaster. So here’s a brief overview of ecommerce before we get into the Ecommerce Essentials detailed throughout this category.
What Is Ecommerce?
The Dictionary says: “ecommerce: Commerce that is transacted electronically, as over the Internet.” Synonyms include: e-commerce, electronic commerce, Ecommerce, online retail, online trading, and selling online.
Selling and transacting like this can be done thanks to the World Wide Web, which is the global combination of links, information, web pages and ecommerce websites. All of this is delivered to us via the Internet, an infrastructure of computers all linked together. Ecommerce embodies anything from selling a domain name to selling music downloads, or from information products like this eBook to physical products such as a DVD or clothing. Once ordered these products are shipped direct to your customers’ door. The term ecommerce is also commonly used for selling physical products to retail customers (Business-to-Consumer, B2C) and business customers (Business-to-Business, B2B). Therefore, we will focus on these through the Ecommerce Essentials.
A Sad Statistic.
Did you know… 97% of ecommerce websites make $0 profits in their first 3 years online. Such is the steep learning curve and skill set required to build an ecommerce website that will dominate your product category, market or niche. Have you heard the phrase ‘work on your business and not in your business’ ? Well the 97% referred to above are doing the latter. Once trapped running your ecommerce website, it’s damned hard to escape and spend time where you should be, marketing your business to greater profits. Aim to be part of the profitable 3% as quickly as possible, and your ecommerce sales and profits will skyrocket…
But it’s not all doom and gloom. Ecommerce can be exciting, fulfilling and very profitable if you plan from the ground up, grow consistently and get it right from day one.
Ecommerce Success Story.
Amazon.com is the most successful ecommerce website online. It’s also my all-time favorite ecommerce website! In 1995 Amazon exploded onto the ecommerce scene pioneering the way in online retailing to date. By February 2010 it had 124 million customers worldwide. Many companies have tried to imitate but very few can replicate such massive success. Amazon’s web team fully understands its web customers, and why they buy from its website.
Amazon takes marketing to the next level where most websites simply do not. The people at Amazon analyze user data and utilize this to build, design, personalize and structure their website accordingly, to answer their customers’ questions, fears and frustrations and match the wants and desires of their customers exactly. They introduced and pioneered product ‘Recommendation Engines and Systems’. This essentially means once you have user data you can target and match your products to your customers’ buying interests and behaviors. This then means they SPEND like crazy with you. More on this explosive strategy in Step 2 & Step 4 in the Ecommerce Get It Right! book.