The online marketplace can be a tough business for new beginners. According to the Bureau of Labor, 20% of small businesses fail in their first year and 50% in their fifth year. The challenges that online stores face often stem from their owner’s inability to develop a relationship with their customers through virtual interaction. However, you can learn what actions to take to help make your online store more successful. 

What Side Hustle Challenges Come From Managing an Online Store

When you own a business online, it can be a lot different from managing a brick and mortar store. You will have to learn a whole new set of skills when dealing with a virtual business. 

Customer Loyalty in an Online Marketplace

It can be hard to compete with several other online companies offering similar products as your store. Even if your shop is unique, there may be other places providing more competitive prices. However, an increasing number of internet users seem to attract an unlimited supply of consumers. The problem is customer retention, which needs to be prioritized. You should aim for a 5% retention rate and create loyalty programs that encourage customers to return. Otherwise, you may be stuck with one-time purchasers who never come back. 

Refunds and Returns

Customers could find faults with your products and may want a refund or return for their purchased product. Returns can be expensive because you may be expected to cover the cost of the shipment. Sometimes the customer is lying, but other times it may be that your product happened to be faulty. If this happens too much, it can be a major expense for your business. Be prepared for this and set a 30-day limit or a different return date period to prevent fraud. Create a policy that prevents customers from taking advantage of you. 

Knowledge of SEO

It will be impossible for any of your customers to find you if they don’t know where your site is or if you exist at all. That’s why search engine optimization (SEO) can be a lifesaver. Potential customers can find your store by inputting keywords that pertain to your website. Search engines will display your store based on how closely it matches what your customers are looking for. Great copywriting and SEO utilization can make your site easily discoverable. 

Security from Hackers

Fraud, identity theft, and hacking are at an all time high as technology provides the opportunity for the wrong individuals to exploit the internet. Your virtual store needs to be protected from infiltrators. There are hackers that take websites for ransom and demand payment for their recovery. Others can ruin credit scores by using your information. Bad actors can also threaten your customers if they somehow manage to steal their data once they’ve made a purchase from you. To avoid those scenarios, you will have to use a number of cybersecurity measures, such as complex passwords, anti-viral software, and good website security. 

Learn How to Run Your Own Online Business

You can click this URL to find out more resources about starting your own virtual business at no cost at all. Starting an online business doesn’t have to be hard. Try to learn more about the process and what mistakes to avoid.