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Ten Tips for Building an E-commerce Web Site
By June Campbell

Want to sell your goods directly from your site? Here's 10 tips:

10. Design for your target market. Find out who your potential customers are and why they come to your site (i.e. where they are on the consumption cycle.)

9. Identify your objectives for the site and introduce content accordingly. One Internet marketer tells the story of erroneously marketing an automotive book as an aid to car repair then discovered that the real market for his publication was buyers of new cars.

8. Be cautious about using offline marketing material on the Web. Print material often does not lend itself to Web content and usually needs to be modified.

7. Engage the viewer with dynamic environments. Allow the customer to experience the site - not just view it. Chat features, forums, solicited feedback, and database delivery of custom content go a long way.

6. Provide good navigational structure, including search capabilities for larger sites. Viewers enter your site at various web pages - they should be able to navigate easily no matter where the place of entry. Your sales area should be free of links to other Internet sites. Why encourage customers to leave when you've worked so hard to attract them?

5. Test the interface. A Website interface should enhance the user's goals, not distract from them. Strive to meld site components (i.e. graphics, text, sound, etc.) to create a unique atmosphere and identity.

4. Design with usability in mind and abide by basic design principles.

Utilize white space (less is more), fonts that are easily read, pleasing color schemes, universally understood symbols, and backgrounds that don't distract from the message.

3. Write for the Web. Write in the second person. (i.e. You will appreciate our new product because ...). Keep sentences short and no more than 3-4 sentences per paragraph. 

Make use of hyperlinks and interactivity unless doing so would take visitors away from your sales area. Remember also that your visitors may be situated in other parts of the world, and they may not understand jargon or North American slang. 

Lastly, research shows that Web surfers detest the use of marketing hype. Subtlety counts.

2. Give something away and reward visitors from coming to your site. Offer free information, articles, contests, industry news or personalized services.

1. And most importantly, always answer the question, "What's In It For Me."

In other words, talk "Benefits" not "Features." Sound familiar?

Related Articles:

How to Boost Your Chances at Having a Successful Web Site
You do have to work to make money online. Just like having a regular offline business, the online business needs to be taken care of, the Web site continually updated, and the customers made to feel safe and secure when doing business with you.

Creating A Web Page That Spells Out Benefits to Customers Effectively
One of the most powerful methods of marketing your products or services on the Internet today is to create a benefits web page. Let's face it, customers are interested in knowing how they will benefit from purchasing your products or services.

Make Your Web Site User-Friendly
You can create a website that attracts customers, not repels them, with a little common sense advice.

How to Write Business Plans, Business Proposals, JV Contracts, Human Resource Package, More! No-cost ebook "Beginners Guide to Ecommerce". Business Writing by Nightcats Multimedia Productions http://www.nightcats.com

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