It has never been easier to open your own online shop. The chances are great, the entry barriers are low, not least thanks to free software. “But some open source shops turn out to be too expensive afterwards,” warns marketing expert Klaus Huber.
In recent years, it has paved the way for many retailers onto the Internet and knows: “The technical implementation is the smaller problem.” He solves this with his shop system Joomshopping, which is based on the popular content management system Joomla. 
The bigger challenge, however, is to make customers aware of a shop in the first place. Huber therefore recommends planning enough time and money for accompanying marketing measures. “In combination with good marketing, an open source shop is unbeatable,” says Huber, “but without marketing the shop can easily become a flop.”
Anyone who uses free shop software to create their own online shop as a “test balloon” with minimal effort, to implement a “nice idea” or to copy another shop, will most likely fail. The market is far too narrow and the competition is always just a click away.
Instead of getting involved in cheap, quick fixes, the expert advises taking time for thorough planning and using a well-founded concept to win customers over the long term. Anyone who already has experience in conventional retail can build on it; if you are new to the market, you have to research your market from scratch. The market is tight, only those who can find a gap and fill their niche with a perfect fit will be successful.
A good marketing concept includes the following questions:
– Who are your competitors?
– How much turnover are your main competitors making?
– What are the usual prices in your market?
– Who is the target group?
– Where do you find the target group?
– How do you reach your potential customers?
– How would the customers like to be addressed?
– Which design does the target group prefer?
When the marketing concept is in place, the shop software must be adapted accordingly. Open-source shop systems show their strengths: They can be adapted to requirements in every detail. The design must appeal to customers and enable them to find their way around straight away. A marketing concept and its technical implementation in the online shop are complex and demanding tasks for which there is often too little time in day-to-day business. It is therefore usually worthwhile to hire a competent service provider at this point.
Selection of the shop system to create your own online shop.
In its “Online Shop Checklist”, the Federal Association of the Digital Economy (BVDW) recommends: “For the majority of shop operators, especially for small and medium-sized companies, open source solutions are now the first choice.” Open source can not only be adapted flexibly without competition, but is also future-proof: While proprietary software can be set by the manufacturer, this is not possible with open-source systems. In addition, with Open Source you are not tied to a specific service provider, you can choose freely.
Klaus Huber agrees. He advises against modular systems: “I don’t know of any successful online shop that is based on a modular system,” says the Bavarian, explaining his skepticism. Construction kits cannot be adapted flexibly enough.
If the target group and their wishes are known, it can be deduced which functions the shop needs. Most shop systems consist of a system core that is supplemented by additional modules. The most important thing is smooth ordering and payment functions, but categories and a full-text search are usually a must on the customer side of the shop. The shop must be clearly structured and easy to use without errors.
On the other hand, different requirements apply to the backend with which the shop operator and his employees do business. Interfaces to existing systems, good image management and a product database are important here.
Advertising and Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Advertising begins in your own shop. A well-functioning professional shop system is the basis. But only powerful advertising measures and targeted marketing make success. The shop system should be prepared for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Whoever is not found does not make any sales. Write short, crisp, easy-to-read texts about your products. Such texts not only inspire customers, but also place your offer well in the search engines.
Anyone looking for something today uses Google. No online retailer can ignore this search engine. A high level of effort must therefore be planned for SEO right from the start. Savings at this point are avenged by a lack of sales. In addition, the SEO measures have to be constantly developed – the competition never sleeps.Building sustainable trust
But awareness alone is not enough, it only ensures that the shop attracts many visitors. However, you can only be successful if you turn visitors into customers, i.e. if you achieve a good conversion rate. You will achieve sustainable success if you not only cast a spell over your customers, but also gain their trust. Serious payment systems and certifications are a good start-up aid, but trust only grows in the long term if the customer has a good experience with your business. This includes smooth online shopping as well as fast delivery, goodwill and the handling of complaints. Small, flexible providers have good chances in this area in particular: While Amazon and other giants rely on mass processing, you can look after your customers individually.
Customers also expect you to know your products. It is not enough to simply buy something cheap. Your competitors have become more and more professional in recent years. Customers expect competent online dealers who also provide them with background information and answer queries quickly and competently. If you already have a business and want to open the online shop as well, then also consider that the shop has to fit the existing image of your company.
Create your own online shop: conclusion
The start of an online shop is a complex project in which the technology of the shop system, the design and the targeted marketing have to mesh perfectly. This is the only way to achieve success. It is therefore important to carefully consider what you do yourself and what you buy as a service. It is helpful when an experienced service provider covers several areas.
Digital Gravity web design Dubai agency offers the self-developed shop system Joomshopping, web programming, web design, SEO and marketing know-how from a single source. And that from 25 euros per hour net, so that an online shop can be set up with a manageable budget.


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