Launching an online store can be challenging, even for the most confident business owners.
And picking the right platform is a battle in itself.
All e-commerce platforms come with their own pros and cons – and choosing the right one comes down to your business’ unique needs.
But thanks to its several great features, most online retailers find the BigCommerce platform a great base for their online store.
Although putting an online store together will take hours, using BigCommerce‘s functions will provide you with long-term, scalable success.
Today, we’ll be looking at how to create, setup and launch an online business with BigCommerce – so by the end you can get started right away with earning money online.
Let’s get on with it.
What is BigCommerce?
In a nutshell, BigCommerce is a paid-for e-commerce platform that lets business owners set up an online store to sell their products.
This e-commerce platform is also known as a “Software as a Service” or SaaS platform. It means that you do not own the software. Instead, you are paying for a monthly subscription to use it.
BigCommerce has managed to gain a significant market share my setting itself apart from the rest of its competitors.
Here are some of its features:
- Competitive pricing fees.
- An interface that is easy to use.
- A wide selection of themes.
- Boosts one’s business growth potential.
- It has key features that enhance conversion.
- Excellent SEO features.
- Can sell both digital and physical goods.
- Full CMS functionality.
- Customizable templates.
- Offering users discount vouchers and coupons for their store.
- Automated image optimization.
- Fully integrated email marketing services.
- Product review functionality.
- Offers unlimited staff accounts.
- Integrated with PayPal and other reliable payment options.
Now, by integrating all of these features, BigCommerce offers you excellent functionality for all its users. That’s why it has managed to rise above its competitors.
Now, we will be guiding you on how you can create, set-up, and launch your e-commerce store:
Create a Professional Looking Online Store
To have a viable online business, you need to focus on quality.
You have to create a store that is professional-looking, attracts your target market, and has the right CTAs that will convert them when they visit your site.
When building your online store, it is easy to blur the lines of “functionality” and “design.”
We are not saying here that design is not important. But ideally, your design should not outshine what you are trying to sell.
Users will easily judge whether or not they can trust your site in a matter of seconds. That’s precisely why you need to create a site that is simple and easy-to-use.
What you are selling, as well as your customers’ needs, should be clear right off the bat.
Do not overload your site with too many CTA buttons, images, and categories that people get overwhelmed or lose their patience, waiting for everything to load.
BigCommerce will help you with maintaining this balance.
Start Uploading Your Products
Once your store is looking just the way you want it to, you can then start uploading your products.
If your dashboard, it’s easier to set and create your own product categories before you can move on and start adding products.
It simply means that when you start adding a new product, you can pick the right category for it right away.
To create categories, simply go to Store Dashboard and click “Products” then “Product Categories.”
Although you might notice that there’s a lot of information boxes that have to be filled out, don’t worry too much about it. You don’t have to add everything all at once.
Only these key elements have to be added:
- Product Name
- Product Number
- Inventory Count
- Product description
- Product image
- Color and size variations
Set Up Other Pages to Your Store
You can then add a few more pages in your store to provide customers with whatever information they need before they can make a purchase.
This solidifies your brand and provides answers to common questions and objections that prospective buyers might have.
Fortunately, the platform provides you with web pages that are highly customizable and can be added to your store.
All you have to do is to drag and drop the information, making it relevant to your shop.
Apart from your homepage and product pages, here are other key pages that you need for your online store:
- About Us. Shares your story with your audience, as well as describes your brand.
- Contact Us. Details where users can go to get in touch with you.
- Shipping and Return Policy. Highlights shipping rates, shipping options, refund policies, expected delivery times, and instructions.
Add Product Fulfillment Information
When operating an e-commerce store, you are not just adding products in your store and thinking of ways to describe them.
You also need to think about how you can ensure that your products reach your buyers after a purchase is made.
The Add Products dashboard contains all information fields that could be helpful in fulfilling product orders.
Set Up Your Shipping Rates and Methods
In your home dashboard, you can access BigCommerce Shipping Manager Store Setup > Shipping.
Again, BigCommerce will offer you a variety of options when it comes to shipping.
After navigating the Shipping screen, you can now place basic details like your plans where to ship your products from.
If you have a warehouse or a brick-and-mortar store, then you can ship from there.
Alternatively, you might also want an e-commerce fulfillment company to handle this part of your online business for you.
Choose a Catchy Domain Name
Choosing a domain name is an equally fun and daunting task.
Ideally, your web address should speak for your brand and provide an important marketing tool.
Your domain name will be the key for prospective customers to find you online if ever they want to come back for more in the future.
So, try to resist the urge to use difficult spellings or using unknown acronyms.
Set Up Analytics to Track Your Performance
In order for your online business to grow, you need data and important benchmarks to guide you.
To do that, you have to first examine your platform’s in-store analytics. Ideally, the platform should be able to help you out with basic metrics like:
- Conversion rates
- Unique visitors
- The average revenue per customer
- Your most popular products
Test Your Website Before Launching
You should test your site before launching it.
If customers are unable to complete a transaction, all your hard work will be wasted. You could lose out revenues, and even a customer.
So, before you launch, do a quick audit of every page on your site.
Make sure that every link works for you, and there are no glaring errors. Pay close attention to where your order goes to the dashboard and understand how you can handle them from there.
This will ensure that you’re doing everything that works for your customers. Not to mention that it makes you understand the flow of the process as well.
You can do test runs for your refund to ensure that you’ve set that properly as well.
Finally, check if you’ve set up trigger emails to launch anytime one of your customers takes action.
We can’t stress this enough, but it’s important to make sure that you test out every single detail before officially launching your online store.
After you’ve tested it multiple times, you can now move on to the final step ‒ launching your store and selling your products.
Launch Your Store
After you have completed the steps we have outlined above, it is time to launch your online store.
Before you activate your online store and go live, you need to upgrade your trial. To do that, you should go to your Home dashboard and find the Upgrade Your Trial button.
Note that BigCommerce has four plans available. Their features vary, so before you take a leap and come up with a purchasing decision, review the details first.
The main difference between these plans is the total sales volume allowed for every plan. So, the more revenue your e-commerce store generates, the more money you need to pay for an e-commerce plan.
Do not worry about paying too much for your online store, though, as all of the plans are priced competitively.
To give you an idea, here are the sales limits for every BigCommerce plan:
- Standard plan: Sales up to $50,000/year
- Plus Plan: Sales up to $150,000/year
- Pro Plan: Sales up to $400,000/year
- Enterprise Plan: Sales up to $400,000/year
You can pick a standard plan and upgrade it as your business grows over time. If you are ready for customers into your online store, go to Quick Launch Wizard, and then hit the Launch button.
For a more in-depth look at BigCommerce’s plans and overall costs, check out their full pricing here.
Now you have made yourself an e-commerce trader. Congratulations!
Now, all you need is to figure out how to draw in customers.
There you have it!
Hopefully, this step-by-step guide in starting your online store using BigCommerce has shown you how easy and quick it is to start your online store.
With the e-commerce industry booming these days, there is no better time to launch your online store but now.
Make sure to check out BigCommerce by clicking here.
Hope this helped.
Talk Soon, The E-Commerce Entrepreneur