Data Centre Migration

On Sunday morning the 24th of January we will be moving our servers to a new data centre, Equinix a world leading Data centre.

The new data centre is regarded as one of Australia’s best and is located in the light industrial suburb of Mascot in Sydney. For more information about the data centre you can visit their website here:

http://www.equinix.com.au/locations/australia-colocation/sydney-data-centers/

The data centre is shared by companies such as Spotifty, Amazon, Foursquare, Trivago and many top financial and other institutions.

The new data centre will provide better power and connectivity to the internet so we will even even better up time.

We have answered some of the most common questions about the move below. If however you have any specific question please call our office line on 1300 730 560.

When is the changeover?
The changeover will occur between sometime between 1AM – 6Am Sydney local time on Sunday morning the 24th of January 2016

Will my website be affected?
Yes, your website will be offline during a short window of about 2 hours and work is being done to minimize the down time.

Will my email be affected?
If you have an email account with your hosting then yes your email will also be affected during this time period. Any email sent to the server during this time will likely “queue” in the sending mail server and then progressively be sent when the servers are back operational.

Will enflexion be checking each website?
Yes, once the servers have been moved and are back online we will be checking each website to ensure they are back up online and if you are an ecommerce website that transactions can be made.

What should I do?
On the morning of the 24th you should verify that your website is visible on the web and if there is an issue please call our office on 1300 730 560. Be aware that there could be network instability for several hours after the move as everything goes back to normal.

Backups
We maintain backups of our servers and each account from every morning and once a week so if we need to restore your website we can do so to a previous version.

Any other questions please call the enflexion office on 1300 730 560, otherwise I will email a reminder on the Friday before the move and then send another email after the servers have moved and have been tested.

Introduction To The Different Types Of Facebook Ads

Like BoardOne of the most used social media sites is Facebook. They are one of the leaders in their industry because they have over a billion active users accessing their accounts monthly. Facebook has released Product Ads that are easy to set up and will help ecommerce businesses grow their business and client base. Product ads have been designed for businesses to target their ads more effectively. Facebook’s latest ad unit will allow businesses to target their distinct audience. It also allows users to upload their products or entire catalog of products.

Who Can Create Ads?

Ads can be created by any Facebook user. In order to utilize the most out of the product ads, you should create a Facebook page if you haven’t done so already. Once the Facebook page is created then attach it to your product ads. By attaching the ads to your Facebook page it will allow you to have more options for product placing and different ad types when designing your ad.

Where Can You Advertise On Facebook

Facebook gives users the choice of where you can place your advertising. You can choose to place your ad on one location or choose to place it on all of them. Some of the ad choices are mobile ads, desktop ads and they can include sidebar ads and news feed ads. Mobile ads are great for people that are always using their phones. These users have a higher click through rate than the desktop users. If you are going to choose this type of product ad then it is important to have your website participate in mobile friendly checkout service.

Advertising in Facebook

Product placing with the desktop ads offers the users 2 choices. The first choice is the sidebar ad and anyone can choose to advertise with this feature because you do not need a Facebook page. With the news feed ad feature you do need to have a Facebook page and it impacts are more impressionable than sidebar ads. Product ads can also now be placed in mobile apps.

Different Types Of Facebook Ads

Page Post Ads

Facebook requires ad placers to have a Facebook page. These ads can be links posts or photo posts that can be created by a status update.

Page Promotional Adverts

Multi Product/Carousel Ads

This ad choice allows users to showcase more than one product or an entire catalog of products or services.

Product Carousel

Page Post Video Ad

These videos automatically play when a user scrolls through their page. These ads are muted and the user has to unmute it to hear the content of the video.

Sponsored Posts

Built around user activity, it will highlight a Facebook user’s action (a like, share, or comment). It will then be showed to their friends when they share it. It can only reach the friends that are associated with that user’s page and cannot be targeted to a specific audience.

Sponsored Post

Outcome For Facebook Ads

Product ads allow you to choose your target audience and you can bid on the cost per 1000 impressions (CPM) or choose cost per click (CPC). You can choose to be very specific with your targeted audience. For example if you are a florist then you might want to target women and men from age 20 to 50.

The product ads can also be more specific with your targeted audience if you are located in New York city then search for those women in that particular city. Also you can choose to gear your ads around the specific holidays for that targeted audience.

For example in April and May you may want to promote appealing flower arrangements to the targeted audience for the Mother’s Day holiday. The florist is now targeting products that they are aiming to sell.

If an ecommerce business chooses to advertise sponsored posts their goal might be to get people to like the products or services that are offered and visit the website. There are countless ecommerce businesses that are already highly successful using product ads.

How To Identify A Spam Domain Name Renewal

How to identify a spam domain name notice
How to identify a spam domain name notice

How do you identify whether your domain name renewal email or bill you receive in the mail is real or not? As a business owner you probably receive a lot of email every day. Email accounts were designed to filter out the mail and separate the spam from your important emails.

Sometimes an email can slip through to your inbox and it could possibly be a spam domain renewal. Most business owners know there is a two-yearly domain name renewal but can’t remember where they purchased it or when they purchased it. Also you could receive a letter in the mail prompting you to send in your payment for your domain name renewal.

Email Scams

Emails can easily look like billed invoices for domain name renewal. They can have all of your relevant contact information such as your address, domain name, name, and email address. There could possibly be a link to make a payment with your credit card for the amount of the bill.

In order to help you take protection against a possible scam here are a few tips:

  1. *Read through the email carefully.
  2. *It could possibly be a sales pitch incognito.
  3. *They could be offering to sell or upsell your services without stating it is a renewal for your  domain.

How To Distinguish Between The Real Bill And The Fake Bill

*Look at  the website address. It could be an address that is not hosting your site. Often the domain name listed on the bill is similar to your domain name but might end in a different url, for example instead of .com it says .net.

*Write your domain name provider down in a file and if you question your bill you can double check if it is your legitimate domain name provider.

*Check these links if you are still not sure which company is hosting your site.

Go to whois.net and for Australia users go to  whois.ausregistry.net.au/whois/whois_local.jsp?. These websites make it simple to enter your domain name. They will show you your hosting provider.

 

*The email or invoice could be promoting you to receive a discount or to change your hosting company. They also can be using key words like pay now, urgent, or act now.

*Another clue that they are not a legitimate company is that they are asking you to make a payment on a third party website like paypal.

These are all useful precautions to help you distinguish between the real and fake domain name providers. Always be careful and know that there are scammers out there looking to trick you into changing your domain name company, giving them your payment information, adding services that are not needed, and paying for an overpriced domain and never receive a renewal.

If you do get a suspicious domain name renewal notice call the enflexion office on 1300 730 560, don’t just ignore it as it could be the real deal!

Updated Site Software and Dashboard, Cloud Version 4

Announcing Cloud Version 4 Website Dashboard
Announcing Cloud Version 4 Website Dashboard

For the last six months we have been extremely busy writing an entirely new version of both our Content Management eCommerce Suite and our website management dashboard Myweblogin.

The new release will be known as Cloud Version 4 and we are moving the dashboard fully into the cloud so we can better deploy new features to our customer’s websites easily and with less fuss.

The new dashboard is fully mobile responsive compliant so you will be able to manage your website, ecommerce store and manage your orders from any desktop, mobile or tablet you choose.

This follows on from our rollout in May 2015 of the new Login, Help and Account functions on Myweblogin and is based on your feedback.

The internal dashboard design has been significantly updated with a clean consistent interface and new expanding navigation.



Internal Navigation

The main navigation is now split into 8 main areas:

My Website – where you can edit, add and delete web pages, images and files

Orders – all your orders, sales reports, run sheets and blocked delivery dates are here

Products – manage your products and product categories with loads of new features!

Telephone Order – we have now included the manual telephone ordering system so you can take orders and accept credit cards directly through your dashboard

Customers – managing your customers here

Marketing – you can send mass emails cerate coupons, create SEO landing pages, share your product data and much more

Settings – you can edit the settings of your website here, such as email addresses for orders, how products display, delivery options, ordering settings and more

Advanced Settings – these are the templates and advanced settings of your website if you need to get more involved.

Additional ecommerce features

In addition to moving the dashboard fully to the cloud we have added a huge amount of new features including:

  • Bulk Moving / updating / changing the status of orders
  • Send emails on in transit and when delivered
  • Email orders to people (and create lists of people you normally send orders to )
  • New Payment options including NAB, ANZ and Stripe
  • More advanced delivery cost calculations
  • In Store Pickup Options
  • Database of Common delivery location such as hospitals or Funeral Homes

And these are juts the start although not all features will be available for every package.

New product options

We have significantly increased the product features as well (not available for all packages) including:

  • Different images for each color option
  • Differ images for each price variation
  • Up to 8 different price points
  • Ability to include a recipe for the product to relay to other people
  • New category integration so the product can be in as many categories as you would like.

New ordering options

We have added in great new features for ordering as well (not all available for every package) including:

  • Different same day delivery cut off for each day of the week
  • Ability to block entire categories of products from being ordered (useful for Mothers day and Valentines Day)
  • Abandoned cart Notifications by email
  • More notifications customers on the status of their order.
  • Auto lookup of addresses against the Google Places database

These are all but a small selection of the new features that are being released with the Cloud Version 4 of our software. As we beta release the software we will provide more screenshots of the new and improved ecommerce and checkout as well over the coming weeks.

We anticipate that new customers will have the newest version by the end of November and we will start to deploy the version to our customers from December 2015. Unfortunately not all customers will be eligible for a free upgrade, those customers with highly customized checkout processes will need to contact enflexion to discuss upgrade options.

 

 

11 Billion Reasons to Sell Online

Australian Consumers spent over 11 Billion dollars last year online

Is your website selling or failing?

Source:

11 Billion Reasons to sell online

According to the National Australia Bank, Australian’s spend on average $500 each a year online, and the total online shopping bill is now in excess of $11 billion dollars a year.

Without a doubt eCommerce is here to stay and it is affecting traditional bricks and mortar businesses.

We are being bombarded with stories of retail doom and gloom, with in store sales almost dead, or business are closing up shop because of the ‘economic conditions’.

Traditional retail might be dead, but eCommerce is Booming!

But these stories are not representing the true nature of Australia retail, they only represent the old guard of bricks and mortar who have not yet embraced online shopping.

e-Tail, eCommerce, mCommerce are booming and businesses are growing across the country. But too many operators are missing out because they are simply not online or their website and eCommerce strategy are woefully inadequate.

Every retailer needs a high quality website selling online

A few years ago I was talking with the editor of a small business magazine and we were discussing small retailers. We both agreed that every retail business should have a good high quality website and the ability for customers to purchase online or the consumers will simply go elsewhere.

Fast forward five years and Online Shopping is exploding. Consumers are spending money in an unprecedented fashion online, but still many retailers are not taking advantage of this revolution.

More than just a store front

These days it’s not enough to just have a website, you need a mobile strategy, a social media strategy and an App strategy or you will be left behind.

That’s where enflexion can help, we have been building successful eCommerce websites for over ten years. And now we have a solution that offers web, ecommerce, mobile, iPhone & Android apps all in a package that’s affordable and gets results!

Why not call us now on 1300 730 560 to see how you can be a part of the 11 Billion dollar revolution!

Responsive Email Marketing Design

In our never ending review and adoption of all new useful technologies we have been testing the concept of responsive email design.

So what is Responsive Email Design?

Just like responsive web design where we design a site to “respond” to the different screen sizes of the various mobile devices. Responsive email design is the same where we design emails to respond to the different screen sizes of desktops and mobile phones.

Otherwise your email marketing will look like this:

Standard non responsive email design
Standard non responsive email design

In a recent example of an EDM for one of ours customers in the desktop version we displayed three products across each row however in the mobile version we displayed each product in a single column.

Desktop version of the responsive email
Desktop version of the responsive email

Why should you adopt Responsive eMail Design?

It means the over 50% of users who view EDMs on their mobile device can quickly scan read and click though to points of interest. Otherwise you end u with an email on a mobile device which is almost impossible to read.

50% of Email are read on a mobile device!

Example of a Responsive Design Email
Example of a Responsive Design Email on a smart phone

More and more people are reading and deleting their emails on mobile devices. If your marketing message can’t get read quickly on these devices your email will be deleted.

Designing your emails to be read both on a mobile phone and a screen is a significantly important step to increase your marketing effectiveness.

How to reduce Cart Abandonment and increase online sales conversions

The very mention if cart abandonment is enough to make some ecommerce merchants shake in their boots.

What is Cart Abandonment

When a shopper adds something to a shopping cart and does not then proceed to purchase on a virtual or online store.

Unlike physical shoppers who have a very low cart abandonment rate a leading ecommerce research company Baynard, estimates that up to 67% of online sales are actually abandoned!

If you can grab even 10% more sales from your customers that’s more money in your back pocket!

Why is this so high?

There are many reasons that shoppers may not complete their order with some of the most popular reasons:

  • Unexpected Costs (such as shipping, etc)
  • The customer was just browsing
  • Was price comparing and found a better price elsewhere
  • Website too difficult to use
  • The customer is forced to signup
  • Lack of security or trust

Apart from the customer just browsing or doing price comparisons you can reduce your cart abandonment by addressing some key on site ideas.

Unexpected Costs

The most common of all causes of cart abandonment is unexpected costs and this is almost always an issue with shipping costs.

Website too difficult to use

If a customer can’t easily use your website or checkout process they won’t spend time trying to learn something new they will just go somewhere else.

The customer is forced to signup

A personal bugbear of mine are website that force you to signup before you can go through the checkout process. It’s unnecessary and only makes another hurdle for customers to go through.

Even worse are websites that don’t give you option as checking out as a guest (not that hiding the checkout until you click join or checkout as a guest is any better).

If you want people to join your site allow them to do so as part of the checkout process. But don’t force them to sign up.

Lack of security or trust

I review and analyse thousands of ecommerce websites and I am an avid online shopper. No matter how much I want a product if I feel nervous or unsure about the trustworthiness of a website I will not give my credit card details. It can be a new brand or company that I have never heard of, a broken image or a website that just doesn’t “feel” professional.

If the customer does not trust your website you are going to abandon the cart.

What can we do to reduce cart abandonment?

There are two ways to deal with cart abandonment:

Before the customer has abandoned the cart

After the customer has abandoned the cart

Before

Display your Shipping Costs Prominently

Make sure your shipping and any additional costs are clearly displayed on your website preferably near the Add to Cart button on the product page.

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 3.17.23 pm

It’s even better to offer Free Shipping or Free Shipping when you spend over a certain amount but only if you can actually afford to do so.

Transparency is key to reduce unexpected cost abandonment

Show Product Images in Cart Summary

Give the customer a visual summary of what they are ordering. Names might mean something to you but to the customer all they want to see is that the product they want to purchase is the item in their cart.

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 3.18.51 pm

Show all the costs on the summary page

If there are additional costs such as shipping, expediated shipping etc make sure it is spelt out very clearly on the cart summary page.

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 3.19.52 pm

If you vary postage based on their location it’s ideal to have a shipping calculator on the product page and the cart summary page.

Offer Free Shipping

Study after study has found that sites that offer Free Shipping have a better sales conversion rate than those that charge for shipping. Sure it’s not always practical but it certainly helps!

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 3.17.04 pm

Show Security Seals and Emblems

You should be encrypting your ecommerce traffic and you will have an SSL certificate, this and other security seals should be placed prominently on the cart summary page.

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 3.20.47 pm

Display your real physical address and phone number

Want to increase the trust of customers about your website, make sure your physical address is prominent on the site and the cart summary page. And don’t use a PO Box or mobile phone number it’s unprofessional says you can’t be contacted if there is an issue.

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 3.21.28 pm

Offer easy and FREE returns and exchanges

This is a big point, if you offer clothing for example and there is a chance customers may have purchased the wrong size, make it easy to return the item to you. And make sure a statement that you offer exchanges and returns is prominently displayed on the site.

There are many companies that can assist you with your returns and make it easy, Parcel Point http://www.parcelpoint.com.au is one that many of our customers use to great advantage.

Offer multiple payment options

You should always offer your customers multiple ways they can pay. Whether it is through credit card directly on your website or through PayPal or Stripe on their respective sites. Options for payment make people far more comfortable.

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 3.23.48 pm

After Cart Abandonment

If someone still abandons your cart even after they have gone through the process there are a couple of ways that you can still try and get them back.

Email Recovery

If you have the email address of the customer you can send an email to them a short time after they have not proceeded and remind them that their order is still available.

It should go out:

  1. 24 hours later then
  2. Within 48 hours and then  follow up
  3. Within a week

The email should include:

  • Pictures of the items in the shopping cart
  • A Call to Action to get the customer to finish the transaction
  • Guarantee or refund or exchange policy

Customers these days may start an order on a mobile device and then get interrupted. The email serves to remind them and get them back to the website.

Remarketing

You can display targeted advertising to people who have visited your website on other website by remarketing to them:

Adroll explanation
Adroll explanation

The most popular of these are:

It works by setting a cookie on the customers browser if they do something on your website IE add an item to a cart or visit the site.

You can then have advertising shown to them for a period of time afterwards. You can even go so far as to have an advertising campaign reminding them they have left something in the shopping cart!

You can have this set for a specific amount of time, say 1 week and if they do purchase on your site you can exclude them from seeing the advert again.

Bottom Line

If your website and your follow up marketing are not performing up to scratch addressing the reasons why customers abandon their orders on your website is a great way to increase your sales conversion rate.

 

Are you missing on on Marketing Opportunities

Not everyone is great at promoting their business and we often let simple marketing opportunities pass us by. Here are a few of the top ideas that will help build your business and sales!

Build your mailing list with an in store business card bowl

fishbowl_w640Marketing to your existing customers will always return good results because they have already emotionally invested in your business by buying something or visiting your store.

Have a bowl prominently displayed on your counter with a message of encouragement to drop your business card in to win something. No mater what sort of business you are in, something small is a great incentive for customers to give you their contact details.

Some ideas are:

Give away something once a month or week, just make it regular

Do a cross promotion with another local business for a giveaway IE win a Meal at a local fancy restaurant (and they can do a cross promotion with you too).

Don’t forget to actually follow up!

The cardinal rule here is to actually follow up and enter all those customer details into your mailing list.

You should also segment them by date or month so you can inform just that month’s entrants of the winner.

Don’t forget that you should ask every customer when they purchase:

[blockquote align=center]

Are you on our mailing list we have great specials sent out to our valued customers, just enter your email address here.

[/blockquote]

 

And please have a pen and some special paper slips ready for people to write their email addresses.

Include a voucher for your customer’s next order

If you are a purely online business, or even if you are not clicks and bricks you want to encourage customers to come back and buy from you again.

VoucherTemplate_50

The obvious way of doing this is through great customer service, but an added way is to include a voucher for the customer to use the next time they purchase with you.

It could be for a nominal amount like $10 or it could be a percentage off the next order.

Either way the voucher should be physical and should be something that can be pinned to the fridge or note board.

Presentation & Packaging are a marketing opportunity

Back when I was a university student many years ago I worked Saturdays and Sundays in a small gift shop. The owner knew loads about marketing and did an impressive job in training the staff in preparing the item purchased.

Japanese Gift Wrapping

We used a wonderful and very simple Japanese method of wrapping, it didn’t take long but everyone who received the purchase was impressed.

[kad_youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qi8ZXUH_wY” maxwidth=600 ]

 

Mr Porter Packaging

Not every business is going to be able to use the Japanese method of wrapping, but you can take a leaf out of the Mr. Porter, Shoes of Prey or Kent and Lime for making an impression with your packaging.

Mr-Porter-005

Mr. Porter is an experience in elegance and luxury and it’s not just aimed at then person opening the package it’s aimed at everyone else in the office as they watch the unwrapping process.

Shoes of Prey Packaging

sop2

 

Kent & Lime Packaging

Kent and Lime a men’s online stylist has a great way of ensuring your items are package well AND can be easily returned if needs be by having a beautiful sturdy custom box that can be reused.

 

The-Versatile-Gent-Kent-and-Lime

Marketing through Packaging

Power Retail has a great article and case study on using packaging http://www.powerretail.com.au/retailer-perspective/marketing-through-your-packaging/

Include your web address on all marketing material

It may seem really simple but have a look at all of your marketing material including:

  • Receipts
  • Invoices
  • Bags
  • Totes
  • Front of your store display
  • Side of your vans?

Is your business name prominently displayed alongside your web address if not it should be!

If you have your own delivery drivers you should make sure that they have a uniform and a branded top with your business name.

People are naturally curious about things and if someone has a wonderfully presented package arrive in an office they are going to pay attention.

Make it easy for people to fulfill their natural curiosity by giving them enough information to find your business online through a casual Google search.

It’s important to take advantage of the secondary customer and the potential for orders in the future.

Protecting your personal brand with a website and domain name

We don’t really think of our name as our brand, but we should pay more attention to the use of our name.

With the explosive growth of the Internet and the longevity of content online it’s important in these tough economic times that we protect our most important brand.

If someone wants to ‘look you up’ the first place people turn to is the Internet and search Google Facebook and MySpace.

But have you Googled your name recently?

If the first search result (and the first ten) is not something favorable, how badly does that reflect on you?

In recent research more than 80% of recruiters and potential bosses use the Internet to do background checks on potential job candidates.

The best way to protect your brand is to have you own personal website where you control the content. Then with a bit of Search Engine Optimisation the first search result in Google should be your own website.

In addition you should also use your own email address for all personal related email. Like myself I have a personal website to protect my brand:

http://www.drewwentzel.com

I also have a personal email address of drew @ drewwentzel.com that I use for my personal emails so my personal and work lives are kept separate.

Limit public access to your social networking sites

More and more recruitment companies are using searches of Myspace and Facebook as a valid way to find out more details about candidates for roles. Recent research has found that candidates for jobs are being knocked back after recruiters found information on the Social Networking websites.

You should mark your profiles on any of the social networking sites as private and only make them available for your friends.

Other Websites to join

There are a wealth of professional networking websites that you should join and have an active profile. The two most popular are:

http://www.linkedin.com

http://www.plaxo.com

Both of these sites offer excellent business networking opportunities and are free to join and create a profile.

Multiple Online Personalities

More and more people have separate online personalities also known as Avatars. These are used for different purposes. It’s also very good to keep your different interests separate from your ‘professional brand’.

If you post of a comment on a blog, website or online forum using your own name, you are at risk of having this post made available through simple web searching.

Whilst you may think nothing of commenting on a photo of yourself at a party on Facebook, if you use your real name then this comment may be indexed by a search engine and available for all to find.

That review you post on a site like Amazon.com can also be searched and if you use your real name can end up in the vast databanks of Google too.

The best way of managing your identities is to have a separate email address and nickname for all of your personal pursuits and keep this separate from your work and ‘professional brand name’.

It’s not uncommon for companies to have specific email policies that request you do not use your company email address when posting to blogs or websites unless it is work related.

 Protect Your band and get a personal website and domain name

Protect your most important brand, your won name with a professional website and domain name from enflexion.com.au

When you purchase a personal website with enflexion you will get:

  • A professionally design website customized to your needs
  • Your name as a domain name (subject to availability as a .com);- eg:

www.johnsmith.com

  • We will submit the site to the major Search Engines;
  • Easy to use Content Management Tool so you can mage your site yourself
  • Blog and blogger account so you can post blogs to your new website
  • Up to five email addresses like:

john@johnsmith.com

  • Choose your own navigations and web pages
  • As a special offer you will also get twelve months of web hosting included!

We will customize the site for you with your own photos, color scheme and other changes.

Visit www.enflexion.com.au now or call us on 1300 730 560 to find out more.

10 Reasons eCommerce Websites Fail

It seems another ecommerce website is being setup every second and every new business always believe that their business model is totally unique.  The reality is that most of these websites will fail because the owners lack the knowledge and experience to make them successful.

Whilst every business may sell something different these are the top ten reasons why ecommerce websites fail.

1) No Money Pumped into the business

It may seem a no brainer but doing business online is no different than doing business off-line.  Many customers think that they can spend a few thousand dollars on website and that’s the end of the investment.

Wrong!

A good website will cost more than just the upfront costs, if you want to do this correctly you need:

  • Excellent Website Design
  • Excellent Product Images
  • Excellent Product Descriptions
  • Ongoing Advertising Budget
  • Ongoing SEO Budget
  • Ongoing Design Budget for Banners and website changes
  • Bandwidth costs for when you get busy
  • Hosting Costs for servers
  • Transaction Costs

Then biggest pitfall we see are customers who already have a bricks and mortar store and have spent hundreds of thousands on the store but have a total budget including marketing the website of less then $10,000.

Even worse some people think they can build it themselves with a free web service and then become disappointed with their results, all because they failed to invest in their online store.

So when starting out or upgrading you need to have a realistic budget not just for the upfront costs but the ongoing costs as well.

2) No Patience

A business takes time to grow especially online.  You can’t expect to launch your store and become an overnight success in a month.  The reality of people who are “overnight success stories” is that they have been slowly building their business for years.

If you are an impatient person to begin with, running an online business is going to frustrate you even more.

More people throw it all away because they are too impatient to let the business grow.

3) No Plan

It’s the fundamental problem with most small businesses online and offline that fail,

They have no plan in place!

Like any business you need a solid plan in place for every aspect of your business, in an ecommerce website you need

4) No website Visitors

For a website to make sales you need visitors to your site and you need to market the site.  The most common marketing techniques are:

  • SEO
  • Google Adwords
  • Facebook / Social Media

At the end of the day any tool or technique that brings the right customers to you website cost effectively is good!

5) A Bad Website

If your website does not work, has broken images or is hard to use customers will not buy from you! They will do a Google Search and go to another website that is easier to use.

6) Bad Product Photos

A recent study suggested that high quality product images can add up to extra 2% sales conversion rate!

People buy products by seeing what they look lick, if the product images are not up to scratch then it’s almost as if you are saying your product are not up to scratch.

Product images should be:

  • High quality
  • Standard sizes across your website
  • The same aspect ratio
  • Not copied from somewhere else

It’s ok to take the pictures yourself just make sure they are properly touched up afterwards so they look professional.

7) No Cash Flow

Businesses take money and that’s especially true in ecommerce where you need to spending money to make money. Advertising costs money and Google Adwords, remarketing, SEO, Content all need cash to do.

Make sure your budgets have enough cash flow in them to run the business properly.

8) Poor Stock Management

No one wants to wait for their order for weeks and weeks and weeks, make sure if the item is not in stock it can’t be ordered or have a note to say when it will be back available.

If you do your own Pick and Pack it’s easy to manage your stock control, if you use a Drop Shipper or direct from the manufacture model make sure you understand every day where your stock levels are.

9) Too much Competition

You can succeed in a crowded market but more often than not at some point if there is too much competition in the market the cost to acquire the customer base and market share may be more than the potential profits.

Even so to succeed in a competitive market you need to differentiate yourself from the other retailers.

10) No Differentiator

Imagine two stores that both sell the same product in a shopping centre side by side.  Unless they differentiate themselves it’s hard to know which to buy from.  There are many differentiation points such as add-ons, customer service, sometimes money or other extra value adds.

Many businesses fail because they do not properly differentiate themselves.