1. It takes time.
Besides planning, designing and implementation, consider that updating, maintaining, analyzing, optimizing your online store requires time. The more time you invest in your online store, the highest the percentage of success.
2. It needs money.
Initial construction of your e-shop can be affordable and even free if you have the time and ability to do it yourself. A lot of off the shelf scripts can usually provide you with the 80% of your requirements. The rest 20% though costs a lot, especially if you are not a coder so you will have to assign coding, designing and promoting of your site to a specialized company.
3. You need to always have a competitive advantage.
More and more entrepreneurs discover e-commerce. Big players have the advantage of big budgets, economies of scale and plenty of resources. On the other side, small players have the advantage of passion, speed, flexibility and low costs. What will be your competitive advantage?
4. You will need to learn a lot of new things and always be reading.
You will need to learn... "Greek" terms like conversion rate, conversion funnel, conversion rate optimization, SEO, CTR, CPC, PPC and many more. And when you will think that you have learned everything there is to learn, you discover that you are still at the start. The most successful of e-shops (e.g. amazon.com) experiment and measure everything they do know that they know nothing. E-Commerce is very new and we all discover it every day.
5. Your brick and mortar business might be affected as well.
You may need to update your pricing and not only policy of your off-line store as well. You will need to make the right decisions on how to balance two different commerce models. This is not always easy, especially if you are already successful in your brick and mortar business.
6. You start on zero.
An E-Commerce business is a business like any other. You will have to think about every aspect of your business in detail and systematically. Even if you have a traditional business for many years, you start here from zero. Think of how you started your off-line business. You will need to put the same dedication, passion, and enthusiasm in your online store.
7. Most probably, you will fail!
80% of businesses close in the first 5 years of operation. This rate is even higher at e-commerce where the investment amount and the dedication are usually lower. Even if you do everything right, factors like the fast pace of technology, economy and thousands more may lead you to have a "problem" and not an online profitable business. If besides you still want to get in the e-commerce world, at Netstudio we work on building, promoting, analyzing and optimizing tens of e-shops since 2005. We are triple certified as Google AdWords, Analytics & Website Optimizer Partners by Google and maybe we can help you. We recommend starting with the following steps:
- Watch our presentation about 10 steps to a successful online store.
- Watch our presentation at the e-commerce conference where we describe how we do experiments and conversion rate optimization.
- Start reading our blog.
- Sign up at our newsletter (you may input your email at the right column).
If after the above you have decided to start an e-commerce site or you want us to help you with your existing site, we'll be glad to listen from you.
CEO & Founder
Published on 31 Jul 2011