For some people, a car is just a car. So long as their vehicle gets them from Applebee’s to Best Buy, they are happy. But then there are folks who love their cars. It’s their home away from home, a personal sanctuary, a gateway to adventure. These are the folks who dedicate their disposable income toward car washes, paint jobs and vehicle accessories.
You might want to get in on the action, but you wonder: Can ecommerce vendors play the auto-accessories industry?
The tips below will help you make money through your own ecommerce site.
Tackling Your Biggest Challenges & Competition
Before you get started on your e-store, plan for difficulties. If selling auto accessories is your chosen market, you’ll likely be competing with brick-and-mortar stores. A consumer may be more likely to buy an in-vehicle phone charger or seat cushion when they are at the car wash, rather than wait and buy the same thing online.
Don’t lose hope though. You can beat the competition by offering a wider selection and customized merchandise. A shopper might see a steering wheel cover at Jiffy Lube, but if they don’t like the limited selection, they might search online and find your store instead.
Building Your E-Store
Let’s say you want to start your first online store, but have no experience in web development. What do you do? Luckily, it’s easy to start an e-store thanks to enterprise ecommerce software from companies like Shopify. These services allow you to pick a domain, customize a layout, post your products and process payments easily. You can start making sales right away.
Marketing Your Brand
If yours is a new e-store, it’s likely you have little to no brand recognition. That’s okay. There are ways to promote your ecommerce site without breaking the bank.
The first strategy is to engage in SEO (Search Engine Optimization). At its most basic level, the strategy is pretty simple. All you need to do is come up with a number of search terms web users might use to find stores like yours. Examples might include; “buy car accessories online” or “chrome rims for sale.” Determine how often these terms are searched by users and include these phrases on your website or blog. This will help you rank on various search engines, which drives more sales.
You can also purchase advertisements on search engines to appear anytime someone searches these terms. Similarly, you can place ads on social media pages specifically targeting big spenders who love their cars.
Finding a Sweet Spot
One of the biggest pitfalls newbie ecommerce vendors fall into is not having a healthy mix of product on their site. For instance, you may want to sell chrome rims. That’s great. But they are expensive, and pricier items take longer to sell. On the other hand, if you are selling air fresheners and decorative seat covers, it might take a long time and a lot of sales to see a return on your investment. The best strategy you can employ is a mix of big-ticket products and low-priced items.
Sourcing Your Merc.
You might be wondering where to source merchandise. If your business has deep pockets, you might have your own warehouse and manufacturing facilities. However, if you are an SMB, you won’t have this luxury. Consider drop shipping instead. These services start production on goods only once they’ve been ordered through your site, thus saving big bucks on storage and manufacturing. Then even send out the merchandise for you, which is incredibly helpful for small business owners.
Similarly, you can work through a platform like Alibaba to connect with manufacturers around the world. These companies are more than happy to compete for your business and are willing to produce just about anything you can imagine.
So, there you have it. Everything you need to know to play the auto-accessories industry as an ecommerce vendor.