By Jason Eisenberg Community Program Manager for Office Depot
Congratulations! You were born in a time that allows the opportunity for pretty much anyone with a cell phone/computer, an internet connection and entrepreneurial drive to start their own business. Online services and retail are undergoing a huge boom in the economy, so there is room for your online business – but it is still an uphill battle to see it thrive after a year or so. There are so many things to pay attention to for your eCommerce business to succeed, here are just a few to consider taking off your plate so you can focus on your passion and expertise…
“The ratio of failed eCommerce businesses to the successful ones is at declining levels, as 8 out of 10 online stores get abandoned within 24 months of their early growing stages.” (B2C)
Our latest #Workonomy chat with returning panelist Tracey Wallace covers key components of how to start your own eCommerce business. Tracey is the former Editor-in-Chief at BigCommerce, an eCommerce platform for fast-growing businesses, but last year she decided to take all of the knowledge she’s learned and shared and started her own eCommerce business – Doris Sleep. We discussed obstacles she faced/is facing and how she is navigating running her own business, which is completely self-funded. Ahead you can learn about key aspects to running a successful eCommerce business including how to rank organically on Google Rankings, small business partnerships and how they can help you grow and determining where you can put more of your energy in your business.
Google Ranking and Landing Pages
For a long time, getting a great design for your homepage was all the rage in online business. After all, many businesses utilized their home page as their landing page that came from other sources (ie; social media posts). But the reality is, the average conversion rate varied across industries is just 2.35%, according to digital marketing expert (to say the least), Neil Patel. So even if you have great social media and web traffic keeps rolling in, it means nothing to your business if you’re not successfully trying to convert on your website.
Also you can keep in mind that paid acquisition is getting more and more expensive – up over 50% in the last 5 years (HubSpot). Especially for a self-starter with little-to-no funds, your strategy can best be utilized through your content, Google Rankings, blogs and community – all organic driven.
So how do you try to increase your conversions AND climb that Google Ranking ladder organically so as not spend out of pocket?
Make your product pages your landing pages.
Build out your product pages so that there is enough valuable content for your audience. I’m talking about testimonials, customer reviews, your story, educational content (ie; how to content, health tips, etc.), social proof from other publications, and frequently asked questions that you’ve answered. Tracey’s goal is to have 1,000 words for each landing page to get her rankings higher. Check out an example of this here.
This tactic works from multiple angles.
You keep people on your page longer – looks good to Google!
The visitor can get a grand scope of your business and the product they clicked over for.
You’re building a community by adding extra value to your page – branding through education.
You’re warming up your leads!
David vs. Goliath: Competing with Corporations Through Partnerships
No small business is going to go out there and win against well-established companies with money and community – they can afford to pay for online presence.
One way (and one of the big advantages small businesses have) is partnering with each other.
“It’s a tide that rises – working within a community or on a specific topic and really helping to grow that visibility both for your own brand and also for the thing(s) you’re passionate about.” – Tracey Wallace, Doris Sleep
Those big eCommerce brands today weren’t working by themselves when they got started.
“Most small businesses as they are growing are not working by themselves. You just don’t get to a lot places thinking like that.” – Tracey Wallace
Where to Focus Your Valuable Time & Energy
Understanding your strengths (and weaknesses) is fundamental when running a business.
Because Tracey’s background is heavy on content marketing and SEO, that’s where she places a lot of her time. She knows she doesn’t have to pay someone to do what she does very well and as a result, can use her small budget somewhere else where she may not be proficient in.
“I’m investing my time in things that I know I’m good at, know that I can control, and that I know I don’t have to spend money on.” – Tracey Wallace
Learn even more about starting your business by catching the rest of our #Workonomy chat with Tracey Wallace and if you want to know more about keyword rankings and how to get them higher for your business, you might find How to Optimize SEO for Your Business worth the read.
About the Author Jason Eisenberg is the Community Program Manager for Office Depot, specializing in small business and entrepreneurship. Based out of one of the most exciting cities for startups – Austin, TX – Jason is plugged into the business community, often connecting with thought leaders, entrepreneurs and strategists to help identify and find solutions to common pain points all business owners share.
To join our high-level discussions, check out our free online community where you’ll have access to live Q&As, featured business interviews with experts, and the knowledge our members possess.
All content provided herein is for educational purposes only. It is provided “as is,” and neither the author nor Office Depot warrants the accuracy of the information provided, nor do they assume any responsibility for errors, omissions, or contrary interpretation of the subject matter herein.
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