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Every year ecommerce sales have increased. New platforms have led to more online stores from everyday people. Services that aid online sales have added to ecommerce revenue too.
Well-known brands that allow consumers to order items online. These businesses have built trust with consumers, giving them an advantage.
Some Big Brands allow people to create their own storefront. Those running hosted stores do not have to worry about generating traffic.
In a self-hosted store, the seller controls and owns everything. A seller might make less money but will take home more because there are fewer fees.
There is a difference between e-commerce and digital art. People can buy anything from an e-commerce store, such as PDFs, videos, or physical products. The products in an e-commerce store have a market price. If I sell shirts, people will buy them for $20-$30. But if I raise the price to $200 people will not buy them. Since other shirts’ get priced at $20-$30.
Digital art uses digital technology as part of the creation process. At the same time, there is no market price. Art will sell for anything from $50 to $69 million.
Some store owners optimize their pages to show up in search results. They use SEO to bring traffic in for free.
A pop-up might ask for a consumer’s email address when they enter the store. The store owner wants to send consumers emails to come back to the store to buy products.
Sometimes the emails that get sent out have coupons. The coupons provide more incentive for consumers to make purchases. If a store sells products for $50 and it costs them $5 to make, they might send consumers a $2 coupon. The store is better off losing the $2 than the entire sale.
Sellers post their products on social media. A few people click on the links then, the seller can get their email address to send coupons.
A seller can automate promoting the store by hiring an influencer. The influencer will post the product and bring their audience to the store.
Another type of ad is Pay Per Click. For the PPC model, sellers pay a platform to host their ads. Every time a consumer clicks on the ad, the seller has to pay.
Some people have an ecommerce store that are unsure about best practices. A company can offer to optimize the store to improve average revenue. The company can improve SEO, product pages, and images. Which will bring in new customers. Many new sellers will pay someone to increase online sales. The service can offer a revenue share agreement to reluctant sellers.
Some people hate dealing with shipping and handling. I am some people.😂
These people might want to pay a service to ship physical products for them. Only if the service picks up the products and handles all shipping elements then bill them. Big shipping companies might have this as a service now.
I hate shipping and handling to the point that I refuse to sell any physical products!!
Giving websites access to a consumer’s credit card signals trust. The consumers trust the store will take care of their information. Consumers have trouble knowing if they can trust a store with their information. Stores can slap on any image or review, and people will think they can trust the store.
But consumers need a third party to help verify if a store is trustworthy. A company can buy products from a store and verify with consumers that a store is trusted. Which will save consumers time and money.
Does anyone ever know the location of their package? My tracking information will say, “Your package is in Texas and will get to you in 4 days.” Then, 6 days later, the package shows up. Tracking packages has room for improvement.
Shipping adds to traffic on the road. How much time gets added to the average commute because someone needed their Oreos in 24 hours? Why is there not a shipping method that creates less traffic? Many boxes get shipped by plane. The boxes do not need to go from plane to car.
An idea I have is to create a network from the airport. Each neighborhood would have a hub where the packages get delivered. The packages from the airport go to their hubs from a sky tram. A person would need to stay in the tram to put the packages in their hub.
Airports and mail services can work together with public transit to deliver packages. The packages go from the airport then get attached to buses or trains. At every stop, someone puts the packages in their hub.
Mail services lose thousands of packages every month. Some lost packages might have items worth thousands of dollars. The consumers that never got their packages might pay someone to find their package. A package-private investigator, if you will😂
When selling certain products, the physical element needs consideration. Not everyone will buy a couch online right away. They might want to see and feel it before buying.
An opportunity in ecommerce is a physical showroom. A location for consumers to go to see and feel products before they buy them online.
Every order comes with the packaging. The order has the box, protective material, and the packaging of the product. Most of the packaging gets thrown away right after arrival.
The packaging gets made with cheap plastic that will get broken down into tiny pieces and go to a landfill. This type of packaging hurts the environment.
There are materials to make packaging that would harm the environment less.
Any platform used to sell products will charge for the right. They might charge a percentage for each transaction or monthly fees.
I always discuss transaction fees. Here’s my take on them from Digital Art, “If it is a transaction on the internet, there is no avoiding the 3% credit card fees. An artist will have to pay the fees for the art that gets purchased.”
Sellers need to spend money to find consumers to buy their products. A seller will need to pay an email provider if the list has over 1,000 emails.
If a seller wants ad space, they need to pay the platform. Or pay an influencer for a post.
Physical products need to get packaged up and shipped. The materials cost money, and the seller needs to take the time to ship them. All of this cuts into revenue.
Digital products get uploaded to ecommerce platforms. A few platforms will charge to allow sellers to store files on their servers. This expense might depend on the size of the files. If the file is small, ~ 5 MB, they will not charge. But for a 50 MB file, they will charge. In some cases, the platforms do not charge. But they “ask” that a seller upgrades to the next tier.
The internet has many products available for purchase. If someone searched “podcasting book,” they would find 14 pages of links. To get consumers to buy my podcasting book, I need to make the book stand out from those other links. If not, I will lose potential revenue.
If a seller uses a hosted store, then they compete with every store on the platform. These stores compete on price.
A self-hosted store needs to generate traffic on its own. Generating traffic can get challenging. Some sellers might not know where to find their consumers. In this case, they should find people that have created my revenue ideas.
Once sellers get consumers to buy products, they want consumers to buy more. But some consumers do not need to come back. How many products does one consumer need for their phone? A few chargers, a case, and a screen protector. For the sellers that offer phone products, what can they do? They can increase prices. Which will bring up the customer lifetime value and average order value. But that does not bring them back.
Many consumers will put products in their cart and do not checkout. The concept gets called cart abandonment. One method to decrease abandoned carts is sending coupons.
Although, the coupons only work if the consumer has an account.
Every step of the ecommerce process adds to a consumer’s carbon footprint. When a consumer orders a product online, they use a laptop or phone. The data created gets stored in a data center. A data center uses water and adds pollution.
Then, the product itself adds to a consumer's carbon footprint. The product needs to get shipped to them. Some products get flown to consumers too. Once the consumer has the product, how long will they use it? Until next year when the product becomes obsolete? Or next season when the fashion companies come out with their new line?
The product comes in cheap plastic packaging with a box. The packaging gets broken down into tiny plastic pieces because it is difficult to open. Those pieces will go to a landfill, and a bird will eat them, harming the ecosystem.
I am not saying that every step in the process needs to get more eco-friendly. But there is room for improvement in this chain of events. The packaging is one step. Or stop buying garbage that will not get used 6 months later.
Selling physical products takes extra time. The seller needs to package, ship and put a stamp on it. The price of the product should reflect the extra work.
When I create a product, my goal is to make money while I sleep. Physical products do not allow me to do that.
If the page does not load then, potential customers will leave.
Sellers should keep the tech stack of the platform in mind. They might lose customers because the page does not load. Some platforms optimize page speed.
Big Brands mass produce their products. This allows them to have a low unit price to maximize their profit margin. Small ecommerce stores cannot compete on price with Big Brands.
Small brands can win customers over with personalized products. Big Brands cannot personalize products because they mass produce. If a store gets less than 100 orders a month, they can handle personalized orders. They can give consumers the ability to design their own decorations, jewelry, or clothing. Some customers might like to design their own products. A Christmas tree farm can allow customers to choose the fabric color or lights on the wreaths.
A store can charge more for personalized products and increase profit margins.
There are many reasons ecommerce businesses provide value. The main selling point is that ecommerce allows customers to buy items they cannot buy in stores. Consumers can buy vintage clothes or an out-of-print book.
The value for sellers is that ecommerce lowers barriers. Anyone can create a product and sell it. For example, to get a book published, someone might need a book deal in the past. Now, someone can write, edit, and promote the book themselves.
Perishable goods create a barrier for online shopping. Some people like to see their perishable goods before buying them. Since they do not want to buy perishable goods online, they avoid online shopping.
I refuse to buy ice cream online because I am not sure how shipping works. I might buy some to see how it goes.
Ecommerce unlocked many opportunities for sellers. The barriers broken down give people the chance to get creative and make money. The more online purchases grow the more opportunities will arise.