If you’re thinking of creating a commercial website and are unsure how to get started, this article will teach you how to create a successful site from scratch and turn it into a great business. With this guide, you won’t need a lot of money, time, or even technical knowledge. The only thing you’ll need to have is the desire to start your own business.
1. Name Your Business Properly
First of all, you need to come up with a solid name for your brand. Having the “right name” could be the difference between a platform that attracts buyers or one that drives them away. Choosing the wrong name at the beginning will waste valuable time and resources as you go through the change process and possibly go through the hassle of modifying your brand moniker.
A good brand name should be:
- Short and straightforward.
- Sticky and easy to remember.
- Connected to the product you sell, or at least point at it somehow.
Once you have chosen the name of your company, you must buy the domain name. If you see that your brand is already registered, you should explore other top-level domain (TLD) options like .biz, .me, or .shop – don’t be discouraged because someone else took the .com.
Finally, you need to create a logo. Why do you need an attractive logo? Because it will allow you to stand out from the crowd of other sites or platforms, and it will also help customers trust your company. A professional-looking logo implies that you care about your brand and your customers.
2. Use a Reliable Hosting Company
Unless you are in a large business with your own fleet of servers, it is clear that you will need to rent a server from a hosting company, and these are not decisions to be taken lightly. Many online platforms failed to take off because they did not choose a reliable web hosting company and suffered the consequences.
There are many types of hosting, but the most popular is shared or cloud hosting. The power of the server will depend on how many people visit your site. Shared hosting is not ideal for commercial platforms because it may slow them down. The right thing to do would be to rent a private server (VPS) or one in the cloud with a higher speed.
When choosing a company’s web hosting, you could compare average loading speeds, level of security such as SSL and HTTPS, total downtime, availability of online support, and automatic backups.
Besides the hosting plan, there is also paid SSL option that is also available at the lowest price. Either you purchase SSL cert for a single domain or for subdomains, you will find the same level of security but with many features. For example, an eCommerce website may have multiple subdomains then, a cheap wildcard SSL could be your choice and you can get it from different SSL providers.
3. Find a Good Website Builder
The fastest and cheapest way to build your online business is to use an established website builder with an integrated platform. Such a website builder will allow you to create an online shop easily and in a short time.
A website builder will allow you to use pre-made templates that will do all the complex work for you. These usually come with drag and drop building blocks so you can customize your platform as you wish. You can also opt for other alternatives, such as hiring a professional website builder, but this option is usually much more expensive and time-consuming.
Remember that your site should not be too complicated and overloaded with decorations and buttons, especially regarding the transactions- and product overview pages. You can find a good example of a well-balanced commercial page at WowEssays website (https://www.wowessays.com/buy-an-essay-online/): all the necessary buttons and facts are placed right at the top of the page, and decorative elements are reduced to the appropriate minimum.
4. Set Up a Payment Method
Allowing your customers to make online payments easily is another hurdle that is relatively easy to overcome. It is important to note that if you want to accept credit card payments online, you will need to use a merchant account.
A merchant account is an intermediary between your customers’ bank account and your merchant bank account; without a merchant account, customers will not be able to transact on your website.
Often, merchant website builders have this functionality built-in automatically, which makes setting it up very easy. Many platforms have integrated popular payment systems such as WorldPay, Paypal, and their analogs. If you are selling internationally, you should ensure you have a processor that accepts foreign currencies that allow customers to buy from you using digital wallets and credit cards.
5. Create a Post-Purchase Workflow
As a business website owner, it is essential to acquire new customers and convert them into buyers, but if you want to grow your business, you will need to retain your existing customers.
This is achieved by conducting the so-called “post-purchase workflow,” which helps increase the loyalty of your customers after their purchase. If you’re using a commerce platform, you’ll be able to automate most of the process, so everything will be done automatically after you set it up.
To succeed at your post-purchase workflow, here are some ideas on how to implement it in your site:
- Create additional sales pages and place them on the thank you page after purchase from your customers. This way, you will have a chance to increase your average order value.
- Send informative emails to your new customers. These could be:
- Your previous customer’s feedback on new products.
- Other product suggestions.
- Incentives to make another purchase.
- You can offer monthly subscriptions with offers and products only for subscribers.
6. Get Traffic
Once your site is up and running, you need to start marketing it. You can’t just sit back and wait for people to come to your shop miraculously. You need to advertise it first and proactively target your customers. Here are some good and proven ways of customer attraction you can use for yourself:
- H3 – Use Social Media. Create a fan page with a link back to your website and your company’s contact details. You can also post content with elements related to your business, such as promotions and so on.
- H3 – Run Ads. A great way to reach your target audience on platforms like Google and Facebook is with paid ads. With this tool, you can create a budget and choose what audience you want to target.
- H3 – Get Familiar with SEO. An adequate and well-thought search engine optimization (SEO) strategy is critical for attracting visitors to your website. By targeting the keywords, your audience uses when searching, you will be able to place your platform at the top of the search results.
- H3 – Email Marketing. Grow your contact list and send them high-quality content about your business, such as news, updates, special offers, and newly added articles.
7. Research and Choose Your Marketing Channels
While it may be tempting to pursue as many marketing channels as possible, you will most likely see better results if you stick to 1 or 2 of them at first to focus your efforts better. Once your online presence is firmly established, you can build and develop the other ones.
Now you have a well-structured and specific plan to use as a roadmap for building your own commercial website. Let these valuable tips and insights serve you well on your way to commercial success on the World Wide Web.