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Top 5 eCommerce mistakes made by new businesses.

Updated: Jun 28, 2020

As a beginner, everyone is prone to making mistakes. One needs experience to be able to learn from experience, right? That being said, the kindest lessons are those learnt from somebody else's mishap.

In that vein, we've compiled a handy list of what we've observed to be the top 5 mistakes made by businesses new to eCommerce, and, how to fix them, of course.

1. Poor resolution images

Poor resolution images, in the year 2020 simply aren't acceptable. Customers are put off by what appears to be a business' indifference to their brand's image, which translates to how they perceive said business's products or service will be.

TIP- To alleviate this problem, make sure your photos are high resolution, taken with a good camera. Ensure you are uploading the original photo to your website, (not an image copied and saved from another website or social media channel). Lastly, refrain from cropping your image too much which will distort the pixelation.

Alternatively, if all the above sounds too stressful, find and use 'CC0' / Creative Commons images, work dedicated to the public domain. Websites like Unsplash and Pexels are filled with images you can copy, modify, and distribute for any purpose without permission.

2. Not proof reading

When a website is poorly written, riddled with grammatical errors and typos it ensures that that website is not competitive. Customers are put off by what appears to be a lack of attention to detail, or an indifference to it, and this translates to how they perceive the business' products or services will be.

TIP- If writing isn't your forte, save time and energy by installing digital writing tools like Grammarly, ProWritingAid, or WhiteSmoke. They take care any grammar or spelling errors by notifying you of any errors as you type. Grammarly in particular goes one step further and helps users with their style and tone too.

3. Mixing business with pleasure

If you would like your business to be taken seriously, you will need to present it professionally on social media. That means, not using your personal social media profiles for your business. Business profiles help lend credibility, key to fostering trust among potential customers, to your your brand. Nobody wants to follow your social media profile to find out about your latest products and offers, only to have their timelines bombarded by pictures of your natural hair journey.

TIP- Create a unique handle that you will use across all your social media platforms, brand it consistently, and keep your business posts separate from personal. Websites like Namecheckr and Companies House will save you lots of time when it comes to checking to make sure no one is already using the fabulous business name you're thinking to use. Only use the Companies House availability checker if you're looking to register your business with Companies House.

4. Ambiguity

The aim of an eCommerce is to win customers in to buying, goods or services, from a business. This becomes impossible when customers don't know what's they are being sold, or if they do, how to buy it. It's a pity when businesses products win customers over, but customers abandon purchases because they don't understand a business' order process. Customers of today are a fickle bunch, and while it's nice to hope potential customers will contact you if they are unsure about anything, the reality is that most customers will go back to Google, and find another business that can better fulfil their immediate need.

TIP- To combat this, quality control your website and socials, get your friends and family to quality control your website and socials, ask strangers to quality control your website and socials. Essentially, make sure everyone that uses your business online for the first time, will be clear on who you are, what your business is selling and why they should buy it, how they will need to click to order or progress, and lastly, when they should expect to receive the benefits from their exchange.

5. Not retaining customer data

The probability of selling to an existing customer is between 60-70%, while the probability of selling to a new customer is between 5-20%. Customer retention is Queen. This is made difficult though, when businesses don't know who their customers are because they've failed to garner customer information at any point in the customer's journey. Creating customer loyalty is important for every business because strong customer loyalty, and high customer retention rates mean businesses need not spend as much money on winning brand new customers.

TIP- Use applications such as Convertkit or Microsoft Excel to note down necessary customer's information that will help you give them a better, more personalised service next time. You'll need to familiarise yourself with GDPR before hand. Given existing customers are 50% more likely to try new products, and spend 31% more when compared to new customers, we're sure you'll agree it to be worth it.

Our recommendation, do yourself a favour and avoid making these mistakes at all costs! They'll damage your business' reputation and loose you customers.

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