Standing out in the crowded and ever-growing realm of e-commerce startups is tough. Suppose you’ve gone over your website design and considered the ease of use; how convenient it is to navigate, compare product features, view excellent product photography, and ultimately enjoy a smooth and optimised checkout process. Although you certainly can’t afford to fall behind the curve in these aspects, all of that effort still probably won’t set you apart – most of your competitors are constantly striving to improve as well, in those same areas.
So what else can you do to be different? Here are some approaches you can try.
Narrow down to your ideal consumer
Appealing to your ideal consumer’s personality can carve a niche for you. Instead of trying to market your website to everybody, define and focus on the right buyer persona and tailor your communications, ads, published content, and other marketing efforts to that consumer profile.
Often businesses can start out with a clear concept for specific consumers, but gradually lose their focus as they grow and attempt to appeal to an expanding audience. Don’t make that mistake; by focusing on the needs of consumers that matter to you, your efforts become more effective, and you reduce your competition at the same time. In turn, this makes it easier to identify how to beat out your remaining competitors and corner your niche.
Make your own product
One thing you’ll notice about online stores is that many of them are selling products that were manufactured by someone else. Much of the e-commerce competition thus becomes a matter of monitoring trends and prices and landing favourable deals with distributors.
Have you considered manufacturing your own product? Improvements in 3D printing technology have made this possible even for small businesses. Working with a professional team such as RAM Peripherals LTD can get you started with developing your design into a prototype. You can make a splash at trade shows and other marketing events, offer custom builds and start out with low volume orders. Offering something exclusive to your store is a surefire way to set yourself apart from everybody else.
Adopt new technology
Small businesses in any industry will have difficulty competing with established players and big companies. Due to economies of scale, the major industry leaders can often offer a wider range of products and services, faster and at a lower cost. This is true of e-commerce as well; how many small businesses can compete on the scale of Amazon, for example?
The flip side of this, though, is that small businesses are highly adaptable and can implement changes quickly. Turn that into a key advantage by experimenting with the latest technologies to give consumers a different experience. For instance, you could try progressive web apps for your e-commerce site, while the rest of your competition is stuck tinkering with ways to improve and optimise websites and apps which might become outdated soon. Keep looking at the latest developments in user experience design, and you can stand out by presenting your consumers with a glimpse of the future.
The e-commerce scene has evolved considerably over the years and will continue to do so. Today’s insider tips will become tomorrow’s mainstream advice, and before long, it will seem like everyone’s doing the same thing. Always look for new ways to be different while fulfilling the needs of your target consumer.