Since online shopping is so affordable and convenient, customers around the world shop online for everything from basic necessities to luxurious items. Statista reported that online retail sales totaled 4.9 trillion dollars worldwide. ECommerce offers the advantage of being one of the most efficient methods of reaching a large audience. Customers from around the world can interact with you. Only relying on traditional methods won’t help you sustain in this competitive market. To succeed in your online business, you must divide your plans into short- and long-term ones.
The Short Term Approach
To start with let us understand the short-term approach in which the entrepreneurs should focus on developing proof of concept (POC). The purpose of a proof of concept is to validate that a product or idea can be taken to the commercialization stage. It makes it clear whether your business is suitable for the digital marketplace. POC analyzes the five P’s to understand the viability of your business.
- Product –
Without evidence that the product will be viable, product development projects cannot move forward. If the budget is an issue just start selling through limited channels, keeping an eye on the data. Tracking and analyzing the products which attract most of the customers, which are fast movers, and also which ones are slow movers will help you maintain a good product flow. Understanding the movement of your product will help you gain more profits and ultimately your eCommerce goals.
- Price –
Price is a competitive factor. After a product is manufactured, pricing plays a crucial role in decision-making. A product’s price determines the future of the product, its acceptability by customers, and its return and profitability. If you have slow-moving products then try to find out whether the price is the reason behind it. You should prefer affordability and by that, we do not mean cheap but always decide the pricing after considering the brand positioning, competitors, price, and market trends.
- People –
A good businessman always takes care of all the people engaged in their eCommerce business. Be it, major stockholders, in your business, employees, and the most important one is your customers, make sure everything that concerns them is addressed. You should personally take care of the bad reviews by the customers, if any, and do not demotivate by criticism rather work upon the drawback points, and loopholes and keep a progressive approach.
- Process –
In the starting phase of your business, you will always be accompanied by chaos, and have to multitask due to which there may be gaps in the multiple business operations which may further lead to inefficiency in customer management and more bad reviews. Try to improvise these profits and focus on a more streamlined and smooth flow of communication within your organization.
You should have a thorough analysis of the numbers and data concerning your online business, the bottom lines, and what profit you are generating. Always aim for a Scalable business in mind, in which the returns increase in long run. While planning makes sure to analyze whether in the long term this business plan is going to make profits and gains for you or not.
The Long-Term Approach
In the long term focus on investing more time in your team management and resources in the business. Marketing, streamlining the operations, product development, and business expansion are some of the departments that will need a proper plan of budget allocation in long term.
Trail & Error – Your outlook matters a lot. Many entrepreneurs look for shortcut methods and many start their business online mode keeping in mind the trial approach, which may result in unfulfilled business goals. Due to this they outsource everything and do not focus properly on developing a business plan. This may lead to the failure of your eCommerce business as it lacks sustainability. It is advisable not to consider the approach of trial and error.
Second Line of Business – It can be a second line of business for you, if it clicks and works for you then only you will continue. However, any business will need your time and effort in the starting phase. If you do not focus properly on your online venture this is where your business will lack behind. The initial phase is very crucial for any business to develop and prosper in its niche. If you properly concentrate on scaling your business it can become profitable and viable in the long term. So don’t step into any venture without considering into
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