Reaching for starting an e-commerce business is very commendable; it means that you are a problem solver and willing to make a living out of it.
We want you to succeed, that’s why we are sharing our pro tips on the steps to take or avoid when launching your business so listen up!
The failure rate within startup businesses is said to be very high, yet the small business association (SBA) released that
1- Identify Your “why”
It doesn’t have to be about saving the world from global warming or water crisis, it could be as simple as “I see a gap that my product can fill in a way that hasn’t been done before, and i must pursue this road”
Be passionate about your goals and set routes for yourself to track in till you reach them.
Being the first to do something is daunting, but if there’s a need and there’s a will then go for your goals.
2- Prime your mindset to both success and failure
Success doesn’t come without failure, so prepare yourself for them both emotionally and mentally, most people dream big but their dreams come shattering down on the first roadblock so make sure that you anticipate that and plan the perfect detour!
Nobody wants to have a titanic moment happen to their still green business.
3- if it feels right it is!
Trust your gut when it comes to partners and investors and stick to your vision and intention or else you are going to spend a lot of time fixing matters and barely making things work!
Now since we have discussed the emotional pointers let’s get down to business pointers
1- Market research
When you apply for a position, you do your homework around the company you are applying for, right?
So do your homework and pour your time and effort into Market research
- it’s going to take time
- it’s going to take effort
- however, the insights that you are going to learn are priceless and ageless
These insights are going to shape you and your product for years to come.
No wonder multi-million dollars corporations spend so much money on their market research because it works!
Let’s say that your project’s name is N; it’s a whiteboard automatic eraser
A- Specifying your niche
let’s say you have a product idea to sell
- Where does that product fit in the marketplace?
- Which demographics are you targeting with this product?
Narrowing down and zoning in when starting an e-commerce business is key to
A- Prevent targeting the wrong audience
B- Having a clear vision on who you are selling to and why
C- Dig deeper, not wider when proceeding with market research
D- Make it easier for the consumer to know who you are and what exactly do you offer
E- Presenting yourself as an expert later on in your chosen field of products
i- Identify your targeted audience and where do they gather on social media
And let’s say they gather on Facebook
ii- Identify the market’s need for N
- So when you were in school or university did your teachers hate wiping the board 5 times or more in class?
- Is there a product like N in the market already?
- Is it selling?
If there isn’t, then you’re the first to make such a product, but still, that doesn’t mean that they would want to buy it.
2- Pitching, pitching, and pitching!
Nathan Furr and Paul Ahlstrom, co-authors of the book ‘Nail It, Then Scale It’ summed it up:
“Which would you rather do — talk to customers now and find out you were wrong or talk to customers a year and thousands of dollars down the road and still find out you were wrong?”
Stephen Ou is the man behind Artsy Editor: a WordPress WYSIWYG editor in OMMWRITER/BYWORD style.
When he started asking whether people in his circle on Facebook, Twitter, and dribble would be interested in it, he created a feedback loop that would later on improve his product idea and enhance his prototype.
To sum up his process, he basically:
1- Identified the need
2- Summed up his product in 1 line
3- Started asking people on social media if they would be interested in this product and later on asked whether or not they’d be willing to pay for it.
Stephen details every step he took to successfully make a business out of his idea and you can hop on to his blog post here to learn more about it!
3- MVP: MINIMAL VIABLE PRODUCT
Techopedia explains the Minimum Viable Product (MVP):
The most pared-down version of a product that can still be released. An MVP has three key characteristics:
- It has enough value that people are willing to use it or buy it initially.
- It demonstrates enough future benefit to retain early adopters.
- It provides a feedback loop to guide future development.
In an article from Techbeacon they summed up the MVP perfectly:
“So when someone asks for an MVP, say to yourself, “What 10% segment of this request could we build to discover if it makes sense to build the other 90%?” And make sure it would take under 10% of the time needed to build the entire product.”
Why focus on MVP and not go all in?
- Production cost will go over the roof if you went all-in
- you will overwhelm the market and consumer well before you earn his trust in your brand
So once you’ve got the consumer interested in N and willing to pay from $15 to $25 then what?
Release your MVP which is in our case a wireless, biodegradable whiteboard self-eraser!
Feedback comes in and it’s a hit! But some people have some specifications that they want to be added.
- The durability doesn’t go further than a month
- The fabric material isn’t adhered properly in the back of the eraser.
- The battery doesn’t last for the entire day.
Start taking in all the feedback and apply the improvements where you can and see fit.
Now, are you ready for wide production? Probably not!
Your product is now famous within the teachers’ community that you have reached for, but it’s not reaching others on a stable pace enough to sustain your brand!
That’s when marketing comes in, marketing educates your targeted audience on your product, and without it, your product will remain in the shadows.
Organic traffic these days is incredibly unreliable that’s why you need to start marketing and smartly so avoid:
1- Placing your entire budget on one platform.
2- Focusing on a platform that your ideal customer isn’t on.
3- Trying to be on each and every social media platform there is.
Neil Patel talks more in-depth on the marketing mistakes that you can avoid in his blog post here
5- Your online presence
When it comes to that we are the experts, so if you want to know more on an opportunity to launch a personally customised website and mobile application to serve your brand then fill in this form it’s free!