8 Common Ecommerce Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

written by Carlos Alvarez
7 · 05 · 21

Are you launching an online store and don’t know what next step to take? Whether you’re selling digital or physical products, the future of retail is slowly but surely shifting online. In fact, with over 1.92 billion digital buyers, you can easily find your ideal target market no matter what you sell.

Becoming an ecommerce business owner is an exciting step in your career journey but it also comes with challenges and making mistakes.

Keep reading to discover the 8 common ecommerce mistakes you might be making with your online store and how to avoid them.

1. You Don’t Do Market Research

The number one mistake new store owners make when selling products online is not doing market research. For instance, if you want to sell a particular product but the market has no real need or demand for it, it’ll flop no matter how good the product is.

Also, market research involves knowing your target market and their needs, as well as the product trends in current demand. An oversaturated market is very hard to break into so make sure you have a niche product that has a healthy demand for.

You can use Google Trends to see what products or things people are currently looking for and are ready to buy.

2. You Don’t Know Who Your Target Customer Is

The most important part of starting an ecommerce business is knowing exactly who your ideal customer is and how to approach them. For example, if you sell clean and organic beauty products, your ideal customer may be buyers in their 30s who have the budget to spend on quality beauty products and a wide circle of friends to recommend them to.

Aside from demographics, you should also know what income bracket your target customers are, what they do in life, what their spending habits are, and how they find products to buy. Ideally, your products should either solve a problem or fulfill a need or even a combination of the two.

3. You Don’t Have a Professional Online Store

Whether you want your own website or prefer to run a store on a platform like Amazon, you need to set up a professional-looking store. For example, Amazon sellers have access to hundreds of resources to help them succeed and increase sales as well as information on optimizing in favor of the Amazon algorithm.

There are other ecommerce platforms like Shopify and BigCommerce as well where you can create an online store from scratch. You can choose a theme for your store, upload images, write descriptions, and optimize the store for SEO. 

4. You Don’t Have a Marketing Strategy

Another big mistake many new ecommerce store owners make is not having a digital marketing strategy. Marketing your store and products is essential to putting your business out there and attracting the right customers. For this, you need a detailed strategy that goes beyond Facebook and Instagram ads.

As you get to know your target customers, you’ll also discover the best ways to approach them and sell to them. This can be via email marketing, social media, retargeting ads, influencers, or word-of-mouth marketing.

5. You Don’t Have an Abandoned Cart Strategy

A cold fact in ecommerce is that 69.57% of shopping carts are abandoned. This means shoppers put products in the cart and then decided not to complete the purchase. The reasons for abandoned carts are plenty but it always comes down to an obstacle the shopper has come across.

This is why when building an ecommerce strategy you should also have a plan for what to do when you see a large cart abandonment percentage in your store. In most cases, businesses offer a discount as a way to get buyers to complete the purchase but this is only possible if you have the user’s email address.

In all other cases, you can optimize and streamline the checkout process and remove as many obstacles as possible to get people to complete the purchase.

6. You Don’t Write Detailed Product Descriptions

Whether you’re selling digital or physical products, writing detailed online product descriptions is a must if you want to improve conversions and boost sales. The more detailed the description, the better the chances of selling the product.

Customers like to have all the information about a product or a business before making a purchase. Highlight the product features and benefits, write sizes, fabric descriptions, ingredient descriptions, and even testimonials from other customers.

7. You Don’t Use Enough Imagery and Photos

Another big mistake when getting into ecommerce is not using enough imagery and visuals on your website or online store. When people buy online, it’s logical they can’t see or touch the product in person to inspect it. So they naturally rely on photos, videos, and other types of imagery.

If you don’t have enough photos or videos of your products on your website, you’re risking losing customers and money. The more images you have, the better the chances for conversions. Add videos whenever possible to maximize your chances of selling.

8. You Don’t Offer a Great User Experience

When it comes to ecommerce, user experience is key to closing sales and users staying on your website. If your online store is easy to navigate, fast-loading, and full of visuals, it’ll lead to more conversions and sales, and vice-versa.

From optimizing your store for SEO to writing extremely detailed product descriptions, anything you can do to make users feel welcome on your site is a step towards a great user experience. Pay special attention to the checkout process to make sure it’s not too lengthy, confusing, or difficult for users.

Are You Making These Common Ecommerce Mistakes With Your Online Store?

Whether you’re just starting out in the world of online selling or you have some experience with online stores, these common ecommerce mistakes are easy to make no matter what stage you’re in. Use these tips to improve your online presence, write better product descriptions, and boost sales effortlessly.

Ready to launch a successful online store? Check out some of our e-commerce classes, events, and meetups to help you create the e-commerce business you’ve always dreamed of.

Carlos Alvarez

"A bit about " Carlos Alvarez " in his own words: "Alvarez sums up his mission to help online sellers with a quote he heard early on in his career. “New sellers constantly compare their Chapter 1 to another seller’s Chapter 20. They see what other veteran sellers are doing and they judge their success and failures by this benchmark.” His goal is to show sellers a realistic path to success, and how they can enjoy every chapter of their own, unique journey."

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