The 2020 pandemic has changed online shopping forever. The shift to ecommerce has been boosted by five years, and small businesses are scrambling to adapt.
While we hear about successful businesses that quickly pivoted to ecommerce, let’s not forget about those left in the dust.
Studies show that 90% of ecommerce startups fail within the first 120 days. The main reason? Lack of an ecommerce strategy.
It’s not enough for aspiring entrepreneurs to be internet-savvy. After all, anyone can learn how to optimize their websites for speed. It takes an entrepreneurial mindset to run, grow, and build your ecommerce business to last.
In this guide, we’ll take a look at:
- Successful ecommerce strategies.
- The characteristics of a business mindset.
- How to build an entrepreneurial mindset.
- Be customer-centric.
- Optimize the shopping experience.
- Leverage data to increase sales.
Ecommerce Strategy #1: Be Customer-Centric
The most successful entrepreneurs often talk about bringing value to the customer.
Instead of being revenue or product-focused, customer-centric companies consider their customers’ needs above all else. This is evident in their excellent customer service and cohesive consumer experience at every step of the buyer’s journey.
Millennial favorite Glossier found success by creating products that its customers wanted. The company built a loyal following and customer base purely through its ecommerce website and social media accounts.
Adopting a customer-centric strategy gives you a competitive advantage over other ecommerce businesses. It increases customer loyalty, eventually benefitting your downline.
Ecommerce Strategy #2: Optimize the Shopping Experience
If you want to sell more products, you have to make the shopping experience as seamless as possible. Some ways to improve the shopping experience:
- Ensure your website is fast, accessible, and mobile-responsive.
- Make the checkout process easy by not requiring buyers to create an account, saving shipping and payment information, and using form fields and auto-fill.
- Offer various payment methods and expedited shipping.
Ecommerce Strategy #3: Leverage Data To Increase Sales
Today, data available to ecommerce platforms can be used to drive upsells and cross-sells through retargeting and personalized recommendations.
Ecommerce personalization and retargeting drive more conversions, sales, and revenue while enriching customer interactions with your online store.
Amazon is notorious for offering many recommendations. The company uses data to analyze customer behavior (for example, previous purchases and frequency of purchase) to segment similar customers and effectively recommend products.
Thinking Big: Characteristics of a Business Mindset
The ecommerce strategies detailed above won’t mean anything without an entrepreneurial mindset.
Having a business mindset empowers successful entrepreneurs to see the long-term big picture and adapt to the quickly-changing nature of ecommerce.
Every business owner’s journey is unique, but the best entrepreneurs often share a specific skill set that includes the following characteristics:
- Innovative. Aspiring entrepreneurs with a business mindset think of the simplest ways to solve problems, resulting in process improvements or creating new products. Most people never thought we’d have self-driving cars or have the chance to be space tourists, but Elon Musk is making it happen with Tesla and SpaceX.
- Resilient. Mistakes are inevitable when launching startups, but the best entrepreneurs bounce back from failure and learn from their mistakes. Alibaba founder Jack Ma was rejected ten times from Harvard and rejected 30 times from jobs before he found success with Alibaba, China’s largest ecommerce website.
- Lifelong learner. Many of today’s successful entrepreneurs have one thing in common: no college degree. Steve Jobs didn’t finish his degree but had taken calligraphy in college, which he later said was the inspiration for Apple’s typography.
How To Develop an Entrepreneurial Mindset
It can be daunting or discouraging to develop an entrepreneurial mindset when you don’t have prior experience.
The good news?
You can hone these entrepreneurial skill sets required to start your own business:
- Provide value to others. Anyone can sell things online, but entrepreneurial success can be found when improving other people’s lives. When you focus on others, you see their needs more clearly.
- Practice being decisive. Entrepreneurs constantly have to make quick decisions with the available data at the time. Practice critical thinking by looking through problems from different angles.
- Remain curious. Continue seeking out new experiences and study what you don’t know. Take entrepreneurship courses and attend webinars. Learn from mentors and educators.
Final Thoughts: Using a Business Mindset for a Winning Ecommmerce Strategy
Anyone can create a startup, but without a clear ecommerce strategy, success isn’t guaranteed.
Business owners with an entrepreneurial mindset recognize opportunities and bounce back from failures. They differentiate themselves from their competitors by focusing on creating value and leveraging available technology.
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