Running an online business comes with unique advantages, such as flexibility, convenience, and boundless limitations.
However, advantages don't necessarily equate to success. In fact, studies show that 90% of online businesses fail within the first year. The statistics may be frightening, but it's possible to thrive if you understand the common challenges in this landscape.
There are numerous resources that teach how to make online business successful. We've plucked out some of the techniques we believe are most important.
Create a well-defined business identity
Unless you're the only business offering a specific type of product or service, you have to carve a unique identity. Start by answering these basic questions:
What do I really offer? Look at some luxury clothing brands. The materials and technology they use are basically the same as economy brands, but why do many consumers still prefer them? It's because they're also selling a status symbol. So figure out the kind of lifestyle you want to sell.
What specific problem does it answer? You might pick up inspiration from the 10 most innovative products of 2022.
Who is my customer? A distinct target market will help you create a clearer marketing strategy. For example, a store that sells all kinds of shoes has to create multiple marketing campaigns—which can be costly to you and overwhelming to customers.
The answer to these questions will serve as a guide for planning content and keywords.
Did you know that 89% of consumers
start their journey in search engines? This is why you should strive to show up on the first page of search engine results.
Organic SEO takes time, but it creates a compounding return on investment. For example, a single SEO-friendly article that costs you hundreds of dollars could draw traffic to your website for several years. Although you might have to update the keywords now and then.
Pay-per-click ads place your company in front of potential customers but you need to replenish the funds to continue the service. You can learn more about organic search vs PPC here
Organic search results are also more likely to convert to sales because it is based on consumer intent. Meaning, the consumer found your page because it has the keyword/s that he/she is looking for.
Creating high-quality content can boost your company's reputation as you provide information that improves the customer's quality of life. This way, they would feel that you truly care about them and not just after profits.
Building a social media presence has become mandatory for online business success. Studies show that 80% of consumers
base their buying decisions on their friend's social media posts.
And fortunately, it's free to build business profiles on most social media accounts. Some of the most popular platforms today are Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.
While it's also a good idea to be present on all these platforms, you might want to start where your target market dwells
. Let's say, a business that sells accounting software might generate more leads on LinkedIn than on Instagram. This is because the former has a more formal environment and is populated by individuals who are more likely to be interested in this type of product.
You can use social media in a variety of ways which include:
Have you abandoned a cart because the payment interface looks suspicious? Or changed your mind about buying from an online store because it crashed in the middle of the transaction?
Make the user experience as smooth as possible while implementing aesthetics and security functions. Here are some of the things you can do:
Build lasting relationships
As you learn how to make online business successful, you'll realize that it's not only about increasing profit but also building a network.
You will meet lots of people along the way—suppliers, marketers, legal experts, influencers, writers, computer technicians, etc. They understand that you're occupied with business matters but would surely appreciate a gesture now and then.
Re-vitalize these kinds of relationships by sending them a note, a gift, or this year's company calendar. Who knows? This could lead to more opportunities.
Superior customer service takes businesses to places. Considering all strategies to boost sales, customer retention is the most practical. According to studies, attracting new customers is 5 times costlier
than keeping existing ones.
Customer satisfaction starts with a complete understanding of your own products/services. Consider holding periodic training for your staff to refresh their memories and learn new skills and technologies.
Make sure to address customer concerns efficiently. Some businesses go above and beyond by making follow-up calls and sending letters to customers who were unhappy with the experience.
Focus on the aspects that you're familiar with. You can learn the other ropes of running an online business while allowing the experts to take the lead. At the same time, it promotes trust and supports the professional development of your staff.
These days, you can access talents from different parts of the world through a virtual arrangement. Can't find an expert in your city? Try freelancing platforms.
You just learned how to make online business successful. Depending on the current state of your business, you might decide to concentrate on certain areas at the moment. Just remember to stick to best practices in any strategy.
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