Problems faced while starting online store

e-commerce problems

You can’t wait for customers to come to you. You have to figure out where they are, go there and bring them back to your store

-Paul Graham, Y COMBINATOR

Insights and principles on which an online store and a traditional brick and mortar store operates are poles apart. So it is very common to come across some barriers while starting an online store. Let us look at some of the common problems a seller face while setting up his/her new online store.

1 . Online Identity Verification

You need to make sure that someone who sign up for your store services is a legitimate person, not some bot or fraud. This is important because fraudulant accounts or bots could cause revenue losses through Cash-On-Delivery (COD) Purchases (By using fake phone numbers or fake address).

This can be avoided by verifying the customer's information in the first place.

  • Identify fake mobile numbers, e-mail addresses and check whether the zip code matches with any city or state.
  • Make use of verification links when someone signs up.

2 . Data Security Concerns

As someone who is dealing with sensitive personal data of people signing up to your store, you should be very careful to avoid any potential security issues. Ensuring proper measures to prevent any attacks on web server as well as website is very important as the attackers can gain access to confidential customer data once they got in. Customer don't know or care what you do, they expect you to completely protect them.

Having a reliable platform which provides help to setup your store will come in handy for this situation. Some of the popular PaaS options to build ecommerce stores are Shopify, Wix, WooCommerce, SquareSpace, Weebly and IsGoingOnline.

3 . Product Prices and Shipping

One major struggle is competition on price and shipping.

Giant online sellers have shipping amenities all over the country. This enables them to deliver from the point closest to the customer which reduces their cost of distribution and the order arrives quickly. This leads to price reduction/discounts and features like free shipping.

This might affect small ecommerce businesses, as mid-sized and large competitors can often offer products less expensively. In order to tackle this problem sellers can either scale up their shipment facilities or come up with unique products that are not found elsewhere.

4 . Adopting Omnichannel Customer Strategy

As a beginner the one mistake you don't want to make is to depend on single channel customer contact. Keep in mind the fact that multi-channel customers spends more than single channel customers.

You need to consider having website, applications, social media accounts etc. just so that you can increase the touchpoints the customers can reach out throungh.

  • Identify the channels preferred by the customers and connect with them through channels they prefer, like Phone, Mail, Chat etc.
  • Take steps to optimize the channel so that customers get personalized support. Keep track of the customer's communication history by using previous interactions, user profile etc. so that support team can deliver personalized experience.

Don't forget to optimize the store primarily for mobile as 70% of the global online sales happen via mobile. You don't want to lag behind others because of poor in mobile.


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