The feeling of making money online while you sleep is a dream, so more people will continue to enter eCommerce. While most self-proclaimed entrepreneurs will make it seem easy, it is far from it. Without the right tools and patience, you’ll be on a slippery slope of losses and frustration.

Many business owners tend to set up eCommerce websites. Do nothing and just wait for orders to start coming in, which often leads to issues. It doesn’t work that way.

Here are vital steps to take your eCommerce business from zero to one hundred.

Generate Traffic

How will people place an order if they don’t see what you’re selling? You can’t buy what you can’t see. Driving both paid and traffic is essential for the success of a retail business. Before investing in advertising agencies, establish your marketing, content marketing and social media strategy. These organic ways of generating traffic will offer you a better return on investment than paid ads in the long run.

SEO Marketing

Search Engine Optimisation is everything you do to make products visible on Google, Bing, and other search engines. First, ensure you set up your eCommerce website with Google and Bing shopping if you want your products to send automated feeds to prospective customers. Do create a Google Merchant Center account and create a product feed. You can also use platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce if you want fast, automated feeds.

Hiring a freelance SEO strategist will be a wise investment to avoid hit-and-miss runs. Using services like Ubbersuggest will help you discover keywords related to your business that are currently ranking. Don’t be carried away by the highest-ranking keywords because they are more competitive and will take longer to rank. Focus on keywords people use but aren’t getting satisfactory answers on Google Search. Also, ensure you use the right keywords as tags for your product images.

Most startup entrepreneurs don’t say that most of their sales come from paid ads in the first few months of business. Use Google ads or Amazon ads. They will land you your first few sales, vital for your business growth while you work on organic ways of generating traffic.

Also, ensure you use the right keywords as tags for your product images.

Social Media Marketing

Engaging with customers on social media allows connection on a personal level – something that resonates well with buyers. You can demonstrate that you value their needs and are dedicated to hopefully working with them. Research indicates that entrepreneurs utilising up to three channels to market their businesses experience a 190% increase in sales compared to those who rely on one channel. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and perhaps X (referring to Twitter) are the platforms that can boost your brand presence.

For startups, do one platform at a time. Only move to the next channel once you generate reasonable traffic in the first one.
Regarding social media marketing, users prefer visual content to written content. Invest in quality graphic designs and catchy video content highlighting your brand identity.

Consider leveraging social media influencers. One does not need to partner with names like Kim Kardashian or Cristiano Ronaldo. Instead, opt for a known Instagram influencer who aligns with one’s brand’s values and has a following.

Provide Relevant Content via Articles/Blogs

Quality content reigns supreme. It’s truly valuable in a website.

Creating high-quality articles and blog posts that can attract visitors to the website. Position one’s brand as a trusted expert in the industry. As an expert, it will become easier to convert visitors into customers.

Consistently offering information that caters to the desires and concerns of the audience can help cultivate a devoted following and set an online store up for sustained success.

Provide Refund Policies, Trials and Discounts

One way to earn your customer’s trust is by offering trial options and refund policies. Your product isn’t for everyone, and that’s fine. Customers desire the assurance of being able to return a product without difficulty if it fails to meet product requirements.

One can also offer free trials and discounts on multiple orders to encourage buyers.

Email Marketing Campaign

A good email marketing strategy will allow you to reach your target audience on a personal level. If done right, it will turn leads into customers and subscribers. Rather than adopting a spray-and-pray approach, precision targeting ensures that the messages resonate with recipients. Tailor your email list by categorising it according to demographics, buying patterns and engagement rates. This way, personalised content resonates with the interests and requirements of each group. By addressing your audience’s unique pain points, you can capture their attention and foster engagement.

Successful email marketing heavily relies on data-based decisions. Use analytics software to monitor metrics like click-through rates and conversion rates. Explore the data thoroughly to uncover trends, patterns, and opportunities for enhancement. Try out A/B tests to explore elements like email subject lines, calls, actions, and layouts. Enhance outcomes by reviewing and fine-tuning your campaigns.

Build an Online Community

There’s a term in social media marketing called social listening. It is the process of actively searching for things your target audience is saying about your brand, competitors or the industry. This will help you better understand your customers’ needs better and help you create content to suit their needs.

One way to build an online community is by creating social media group pages and forums for people sharing common ideas related to your product or industry to share their views. Information like this is a powerful tool because you will know;

  • Any product hasn’t sorted out complaints your target audience has that
  • What they wish you could add to your service or product to improve it
  • New trends in the industry
  • What are your competitors doing that they like and prefer your product/service


You might be overwhelmed by the operational things you must do to help your business make more sales, which is understandable. However, you don’t need to be a web/digital professional at any of the above mentioned skills. If you are on a low budget, prioritise content and SEO if you have time to learn each skill. It is best to delegate these digital tasks to professionals who have previously worked with businesses to give you more valuable insights.