With Black Friday and Christmas around the corner, many businesses are about to experience a significant surge in business. However, those that are likely to benefit the most are the businesses that have online stores.
In fact, 70% of Brits now say that buying online is their preferred shopping method, as they swap crowded shops and long queues for home delivery.
With this in mind, it’s vital to get your small business online if you want to stay in the game. Thankfully, there’s still time for you to create an online store and start selling before Black Friday 2021.
5 steps to start selling online in time for Black Friday
Launching your first online shop can feel daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Here’s how to start selling online in five simple steps.
Step 1: Create your online store
Before you can begin selling your products online, you’ll need to build an ecommerce website. The ecommerce solution you choose should give you the ability to:
- List your products, complete with photos and detailed product descriptions
- Safely process payments from your sales thanks to SSL encryption
- Creating shipping information
One of the easiest ways to get a website that provides all these functions and more is using a drag-and-drop site builder with ecommerce features, such as GoDaddy Online Store.
You don’t need to have any technical skills or be capable of writing code. Instead, you’ll simply answer two questions, choose from the prebuilt stores the builder presents to you and then build your site with the drag-and-drop editor.
A site created with GoDaddy Online Store will look and work great on mobile devices, and include a fast checkout process that minimizes swipes and clicks. You can even manage orders right from your phone!
Additionally, Online Store allows you to build an ecommerce store at a fraction of the cost of hiring a website designer to do it for you. This makes it a good option for small businesses that want to get online quickly and affordably.
Step 2: Add your logos and branding
Once you’ve created your ecommerce website, you’ll need to focus on branding. If you don’t already have a logo, you can create one with GoDaddy Studio, which is a free, easy-to-use design tool which comes free when you use GoDaddy’s Online Store. You can learn how to make a logo for your small business in this guide.
Once you have your logo, add it to your web store near the top header and bottom footer. This will allow your customers to easily recognize your business when they shop your online store.
Step 3: Make product listings
Now that your website business branding is complete, you’ll need to create product listings to showcase your products to potential customers.
As you’re creating your listings, think up names for your products. You’ll also have to write product descriptions, which means adding information such as:
- Shipping times
You’ll also need to add high-quality images of your products. This guide explains how to get started with product photography, while this guide goes into more details about creating product listings. This post deals with how to design a product page.
As you’re creating your product listings, you also need to ensure that they’re properly organized. Use categories and menus to organize your product listings, so that your customers can easily find what they’re looking for.
If your store isn’t organized, it can seem cluttered. You may even lose out on potential sales if customers aren’t satisfied with the overall shopping experience your online business is offering.
Step 4: Set your prices
Your online store is almost ready to launch, but first you’ll need to set the prices for your products.
If you’ve been operating a business for a while, then pricing your products should be easy.
However, if you’re new to pricing products, then you’ll want to spend some time considering things such as:
- Direct cost
- Industry markups
- Competitor pricing
- Shipping costs
Once you’ve set the regular prices for your products, you’ll want to revisit your pricing regularly to ensure that your pricing is competitive and profitable for your business.
When you’re setting the prices for your store, don’t forget to research the shipping cost. Your sales could cost you money if you’re losing money on the cost of shipping.
You may want to consider a discounting strategy as well, especially if you’re planning a Black Friday and/or Christmas sale.
Step 5: Launch and promote your online shop
Before promoting your new online store to your customers, you’ll want to test it yourself. Go through it carefully, clicking on every link and submitting an order. You’ll want to make sure that everything works smoothly and there are no glaring issues that could result in lost sales.
to launch it and begin promoting it to potential customers. There are many methods you can use to promote your business like:
- Content marketing: This includes things like blogging and social media marketing. It can be a great way to draw attention to your brand, especially if you’re offering unique products.
- Paid advertising: This is a great way to get potential customers to your site. You’ll need to set aside some funds for this option, but it’s worth the investment if done correctly.
- Email marketing: If you use email marketing, you’ll have a better chance of building up repeat customers. It can also help with establishing yourself as a brand people trust.
This guide is packed with tips on how to promote your business.
If not now, then when?
With so many customers shopping online now, you need to be there if you want to remain competitive.
If you delay launching your online shop, you could be missing out on sales.
And don’t forget, you can currently get 50% off GoDaddy Online Store, meaning you could start selling online quickly and for less.