September '19

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46 THE SHOP SEPTEMBER 2019 store/online payment system, and if not you may need to have your new online store setup on a new platform developed to support e-commerce. This will greatly influence the price you'll pay for site devel- opment as well as your monthly ongoing hosting and care plan fees. 2 Get all your content together and ready. Content covers a wide variety of online assets, including photos, text, videos, price lists, product lists, service lists, etc. When it comes to selling products online, you'll need more than just a nice set of photos and a brief description of your products. In our industry, customers expect to have detailed technical specs, so you'll need that info on hand as well. Oh, and don't forget that since you may be shipping your products, you'll need to know the weight of each item. In this industry, the power of good photography can't be overstated. Great product photography is the easiest way to attract new customers. A high-quality set of photos showcasing your premises, your services and/or your products can be used for multiple platforms—from your website to social media, trade show exhibits and flyers. The same goes for good website text (oth- erwise known as copy or content writing)— get it done right the first time and you can re-use your key messaging on all your web- site and marketing materials going forward. We recommend that you hire a professional photographer as well as a content writer to help you with this task. Content writers can also make sure your content is written prop- erly for search engine optimization. If you're doing any of your site's content yourself, make sure you run it by someone you trust for honest feedback. You want a professional online presence, so avoid blurry photos and spelling mistakes! Also remember that you need to think about your customers and how they may interact with your site—getting too technical or wordy might turn them off. These days, less is more. Clear and con- cise is the way forward. 3 Choose the right e-commerce platform for your needs. There are hundreds of options for e-com- merce platforms. That's an overwhelming thought as it is, let alone trying to figure out which one has the best features for your needs. An easy rule to follow is to stick to a popular option like Shopify, Volusion, Big- Commerce or WooCommerce for Word- Press, as these have great support for your chosen web developer to solve any future issues that may arise. They'll also support your growth when the orders start coming in (and if you need to switch web design agencies, you'll have more choices of com- panies that can work with your site). You'll also be required to choose an online payment gateway to collect the payments through your site. The most popular and reliable options are PayPal and Stripe. Keep in mind that online payment gateways will take a percentage of each sale you make. This typically ranges from 2.9 to 3.9 per- cent, and goes for websites selling both products and services. You'll also need to meet PCI credit card compliance standards. This sounds scary, but if you or your selected developer use a top-quality e-commerce platform, they usually have this covered. If you're looking to take payments online CHANGING LANES: THE BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO SELLING ONLINE AT V • U T V • M OTO R CYC L E • S N O W M O B I L E • P W C Proudly designed & S e w n L A N D R U M , S O U T H C A R O L I N A T H e b e s t c o v e r s u n d e r t h e s u n ™ • P r e f e r r e d b y c u s t o m e r s f o r d e s i g n , p r o t e c t i o n , a n d d u r a b i l i t y • N e w d e a l e r p r o g r a m s t o i n c r e a s e s a l e s a n d p r o fi t s • S t o c k t h e b e s t s e l l e r s n o w ! C V S a l e s @ c o v e r c r a f t . c o m • 8 8 8 4 8 C O V E R T h e B e s t C o v e r s U n d e r t h e S u n ™ P R O T E C T T H E A D V E N T U R E P R O T E C T T H E A D V E N T U R E U N L E A S H T H E P R O F I T S W I T H P R E M I U M C A R V E R P O W E R S P O R T S C O V E R S U N L E A S H T H E P R O F I T S W I T H P R E M I U M C A R V E R P O W E R S P O R T S C O V E R S

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