It’s easier than ever to set up an e-commerce store and get it online. With options such as Shopify and WooCommerce, it’s a popular choice with budding entrepreneurs.
Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as uploading a host of products, sitting back and waiting for the orders to come in.
The more planning you put into creating your e-commerce store before you even start to create a website, the better your chances of success. The best place to start, of course, is with the type of products you’re going to sell.
Here, our Cardiff web development team take a closer look at choosing the best niche and building the foundation for future success.
What is a Niche?
Many people think that a niche is a narrow, often obscure area that nobody has ever thought of before such as socks for dogs or oddly shaped lightbulbs.
Yes, it can be.
Your niche here, however, is the primary focus of your e-commerce store. For example, fashion is a broad category. To find a niche you have to drill down deeper. Are you going to sell a particular brand? Cater for women’s fashion? Stick to a narrow type of clothing such as summer clothes or shoes?
One of the biggest mistakes our Cardiff web design team sees is where clients have far too many products in a whole host of different categories. If you’re a large corporation like Amazon, this is fine – it’s what they’re known for.
For smaller e-commerce sites, nailing down and limiting the product line is key for several reasons.
Why is it Important for Your E-Commerce Store?
First off, choosing a niche allows you to focus on a clear set of categories and build your online brand around them. You can often rank your website pages on sites like Google better and reach a much wider and relevant audience.
It’s better to have a few highly sought after products than a whole bunch that sits on your site and remain unsold. Don’t’ forget, you can always add to the product list at a later date as your business becomes more successful.
There’s also a lot of competition out there, especially if you pick a popular category. Choosing the right niche gives you the chance to stand out from the crowd and build a customer base that is emotionally engaged with your brand.
Choosing the Best Niche for Your Cardiff Web Design
It’s important to take your time over your choice. All too often new e-commerce store owners rush this because of their unrelenting urge to start making money.
If you create your own products, you may already have that niche nailed down. But most e-commerce sites are developed to sell other people’s products and there’s a lot to consider before you hire someone to build your Cardiff website.
8 Questions to Ask When Choosing an E-Commerce Niche
Here are the top 8 questions our Cardiff web design team think you should be asking:
1. Is It a Passion?
Running any business, including an e-commerce one, is hard work.
Make sure that you choose a niche that you’re passionate about. Don’t pick something just because it sells or you think you can make amazing profits. Although this is important, your passion is even more vital to success – it will get you up in the morning and certainly support you through those difficult times.
2. Is There a Market?
The big question is whether anyone wants to buy your products. There has to be a market out there, not just your gut feeling that there is one. Doing your market research is critical.
3. What’s the Competition?
Some niche areas are more competitive than others. Fashion, for example, is highly competitive and there are thousands of stores out there all trying to get noticed. Ask yourself this:
- Are there too many players?
- Can I stand out?
- Do I offer something different that customers will like?
4. What’s the Profit Margin?
Most e-commerce entrepreneurs sell other people’s products. You need to consider the potential markup, whether you’re dropshipping or you’ve got a relationship with a product supplier.
In short, how many units do you have to sell to make a living? What can you realistically sell them for?
5. Do You Have the Resources to Sell?
Creating your e-commerce site is just one part of your business strategy. Once it’s up there, you have to put in the hard yards to get visitors swarming in.
That means you need to invest in marketing and building your brand so that it becomes instantly recognisable. That takes resources and much will depend on the niche you choose.
6. Who Are Your Customers?
Another mistake our Cardiff web development team sees quite a lot is e-commerce owners who don’t understand their customers. They essentially don’t know who they are selling to. When choosing your niche, think closely about who your ideal customer is.
Are they young, old? What do they like? Where do they hang out? The deeper you can go the better you’ll understand how to market to them.
7. What is Their Problem?
In addition to customer identity, you need to know what problem you are solving for your customer when choosing a niche. Why is this important? It helps you get your messaging right, find the best solution and ensures that you pick the right products for your site.
8. How Are You Going to Market Your E-Commerce Site?
The big challenge for any new e-commerce site is getting noticed. When picking your niche, it’s essential to think about ways you can market to your chosen audience. Do you need to reach out on social media? Use pay per click advertising? Advertise on other sites?
5 Mistakes Newbie E-Commerce Entrepreneurs Make
- Going too big too soon.
- Not understanding the marketplace.
- Giving up too soon.
- Not having a clear marketing strategy.
- Picking the wrong web design for your e-commerce site.
Nick Walsh Studios for Your Cardiff Web Development
There’s no point in picking the right niche for your e-commerce store if you don’t then follow through with a well-designed website. There are a lot of different options out there nowadays and it’s cheaper than ever to get up and running with a new site. Picking the best partner is critical if you want a site that does everything you need it to.
At Nick Walsh Studios, our Cardiff web development team are focused on providing you with an amazing website that matches your ambitions. What to find out more?