Integrating e-commerce with existing business plans is not always easy, even for experienced offline retailers and brands. Here below are the 5 most common mistakes that companies usually do when starting their online transformation.

1 . Neglecting preparations:

If you want to start moving your business online, you must first take a look around: how many of your competitors are online? Which digital companies might become your new competitors? What is their target and content strategy?

Space on the digital market might be available due to a lack of specific information about the products or services that you are selling. Taking advantage of this opportunity and doing the necessary research will help you tailor your first positioning strategy around such contents.

In this type of operation is always best to focus first on on-site & off-site SEO, to optimize your online presence and generate traffic even in very competitive sectors.

There is no need for exorbitant investments, and this solution can help you bring value to your customers through contents, together with products and services.

2 . Underestimating buyer personas:

Speaking of customers, many new online businesses tend to overlook the importance of having buyer personas ready right from the start.

Buyer personas are

Detailed descriptions who represent your target audience; fictional customers who embody the characteristics of your best potential customers” (Hootsuite).

If you already manage an offline retail store or brand, you probably already know very well your customers. Use such knowledge to your advantage at the beginning but remember to consider other variables when making such research, like the channels they prefer to gather information before a purchase or the social media they use most for example.

The more detailed buyer personas are the easier will be for you to determine how to engage them with dedicated contents and marketing actions.

3 . Taking engagement for granted:

Let’s dive a bit deeper on the subject here and introduce an advanced concept: engagement loop.

An engagement loop is the cycle of the actions that users do when they interact with your products or service. It sparks from a need, that acts as a motivator for the consumer to act. This translates into a feedback from the system that the seller has designed and ends with an emotion, that can make the user interact again or return later.

These cycles of actions must be planned in advance, as they are crucial to consumer retention and will play a major role in making marketing campaigns more efficient. Resorting to the help of influencers without a plan to engage the user he or she will bring to you after the campaign results in a lot of potential wasted, and a loss of traffic.

4 . Not considering mobile users:

According to the latest data by wearesocial, mobile’s share of daily internet time is already up to 52.8%, taking up almost 56% of the total web traffic worldwide.

Given the importance of smartphones in consumers’ daily routine, companies must concentrate in creating the best user experience possible for these devices. Mobile users expect faster reactions from web pages and even perceive buffering time different form desktop users.

For these reasons, companies going digital must consider mobile traffic when defining their e-commerce strategy.

5 . Going all in with your products:

Big e-commerce players, such as Amazon and Bol.com, have given us the impression that having a wide portfolio of products and gadgets on sale on a virtual shop is the best way to do e-commerce.

Although tempting, especially for offline businesses that deal with a lot of products, such approach should be avoided (we are not in the 90s anymore). Instead, sellers should spend more time on shooting and descriptions, as well as invest in the design of product pages that are relevant for their target consumers.

Before moving online consider a product selection of your most selling items, comparing it with your online competitors will help you a great deal to find what products could be more valuable to focus early on.

As a final take, let’s stress again the importance of knowing your customers. Without a proper analysis in this direction, you will probably incur in one of these mistakes and ultimately build a system not efficient enough.

As a final take, let’s stress again the importance of knowing your customers. Without a proper analysis in this direction before moving online, you will probably incur in one of these mistakes and ultimately build a system not efficient enough to achieve the goals you set for your business.