Many small businesses have thought about taking their products on an e-commerce platform, but many are still hesitant.
Over the last year, the demand for e-commerce products has seen businesses try to offer their services online while also looking for ways to protect themselves and their consumers in the process.
Gugulethu Mfuphi spoke to Loyiso Boyce about ways to take your business online safely way.
Listen to the conversation here:
Tips on getting you started with your online business
Do your research on how well your business will perform online
The first and most important step is, to begin with, your research. Don’t make decisions based on a gut feeling. Growing any online business needs financial investment.
“When you go online you need to be cognisant that people need to know who you are, you need to be confident of who you are as a business. With new products they might not know who you are as a business. Being online gives you access to multiple customers.”
Know your customer
You must understand who you are selling to; this understanding will determine how you market to them. Fortunately, Facebook makes it reasonably simple for businesses to identify their target audience online.
Make sure you protect your customers from cyber-crimes
Boyse gave a stern warning to small businesses to be aware of phishing attacks where fraudsters pose as potential customers. This typically happens when you get asked to make upfront payments to non-existent customers.
“Phishing is when someone sends you an e-mail looking to get you to do something or share some information. With businesses going online and being pressured for business, you need to be wary of fake (request for quotations), which is a typical phishing attack where you think there’s an opportunity or you’ve been shortlisted.”
Get your brand right
You need a brand that interacts with your persona if you want to start a successful e-commerce business.
Identifying your persona makes it easier to create your brand, making it easier to know what doesn’t align with your brand.