E-Commerce Tips for Construction Companies in 2020
Did you know that you can buy unicorn meat online? It’s not real, but you can still buy a can complete with a couple of plush dismembered unicorn body parts inside. Meant as more of a gag, the fact is that it’s a niche product and it exists. You can buy just about anything you can imagine online now. So, companies that are looking to increase the scale of their business, should start selling online. They should also figure out how to build an ecommerce site for their construction business.
Online shopping and ecommerce has come a long way since the first–ever secure online transaction took place in 1994. Phil Brandenberger of Philadelphia used a secret code to authorize his Visa credit card to pay $12.48, plus shipping costs for the CD “Ten Summoners’ Tales” by Sting. It has since become so much easier to send payments online for a variety of different goods and services. And much more secure as well.
Ecommerce transactions are only going to increase as more people go online to buy things. While it may sound out of the norm for many construction businesses, selling online is just an extension of your retail sales channel.
What is ecommerce?
Ecommerce or electronic commerce refers to the buying and selling of goods and services over the internet. Ecommerce is commonly used to reference commercial transactions for physical products online. But it can be used to describe any type of transaction that happens online.
Is there a difference between ecommerce and online shopping?
A lot of commerce happens over the internet, and this is not just restricted to retail commerce. This includes booking tickets and online banking, as well as transactions that happen on electronic commerce platforms. These allow people not only to sell goods but transact in any way or form. Online shopping, on the other hand, is purely for sites that sell tangible products or services online.
Types of ecommerce
When people think of ecommerce transactions, they most commonly think of the ones that happens when a business sells to a customer. But there are a few other types of transactions that can take place. In total, there are six types of ecommerce:
- Business-to-Business (B2B)
- Business-to-Consumer (B2C)
- Consumer-to-Consumer (C2C)
- Consumer-to-Business (C2B)
- Business-to-Administration (B2A)
- Consumer-to-Administration (C2A)
How to build your ecommerce site
Setting up an ecommerce site is not like setting up a regular website. Things can quickly get complicated if you don’t know what you are doing. So do a little research and remember that something that works for one business may not work for yours. Below are some tips on how to build an ecommerce site for your construction business:
Choose a platform for your site
You can choose from a number of ecommerce or web hosting platforms for your site. When considering different platforms, there are several things that you should look for. Consider things like mobile–friendliness, pricing and payment, customer service, search engine optimization (SEO) friendliness, security features, platform scalability, product management system, and order management system.
Look for a platform that is easy to set up, easy for people to navigate, allows for integrations, is SEO-friendly, works on mobiles, provides tech support, provides analytics, and is affordable. Ideally, the platform should be able to sustain your business efforts for as long as possible.
Choose between SaaS or open source
SaaS stands for Software as a Service. Your store will be hosted on another company’s servers and they are responsible for ensuring that your store is up and running. With open–source on the other hand, you have to install the platform on a server and deal with all the technical work.
SaaS platforms are less expensive, faster to set up, and easy to use. The only downside is that you can’t customize much and have to work with the tools that the platform gives you. Open source, on the other hand, can be customized, but it is more expensive, requires a lot of maintenance and needs the services of a developer to keep up and running.
Get help from a web developer
While you could use an ecommerce platform to set up your shop yourself, it is always best to have the help of a web developer. Make sure they understand how the platform you want to use works. While you could create and manage a simple site on your own, a developer can make your site even better. The developer you choose should understand both the needs of your business and ecommerce website construction.
Have an easily navigable site
Prospects need to easily be able to find any products or services that they are looking for on your site. If they are unable to locate something, they have multiple other competitors that they can consider instead. When it comes to making a purchase as well, your customers need to know exactly how they should complete their purchase. To make the entire experience in your ecommerce store better, the design of your site should match the type of products that you sell, and all your products should be properly showcased.
Market your store to people
All of the most successful ecommerce stores invest heavily in marketing. And they are not always the stores with the most amount of money to spend. With a good strategy in place, you will need to drive traffic to your site using search engine optimization (SEO) techniques. You should use different combinations of techniques like social media, pay-per-click ads, and sponsored content. Whichever you choose, you will need to monitor all of your campaigns and ensure that they are running well. You can also market your store through email campaigns and social media.
Having an ecommerce site can completely transform how your construction company does business. It will undoubtedly boost sales and allow you to reach new customers. Additonally, it is a great way to retain customers as well. Successfully running an ecommerce store doesn’t have to be difficult and it doesn’t have to cost you a bomb either.
Start building your ecommerce store and start selling your products with a little bit of help from the experts. CMGurus does ecommerce website development for construction businesses so that you can reach a bigger audience and launch a profitable store.