A virtual store is a website that sells products or services online and usually has a shopping cart associated with it. With the popularity of the internet, there has been a rapid increase in online stores, and online shopping has become an advantage for retail owners.
In these types of stores, people can buy from their homes, with more choosing power since they have a wide variety of alternatives to choose from and do not need to walk long distances to reach different stores. Being on the internet, you can sell products worldwide, it should be taken into account that these international shipments make refunds and warranty claim difficult by the associated. Also the customs services of
each country may require the payment of additional taxes at the time of dispatching or introducing the products to the respective country.
Electronic commerce has also created great benefits to many small and medium-sized businesses since they can have a store open 24hours/365days to everyone and at lower maintenance costs compared to the investment they should make to reach more places with physical branches. Even very small merchants can benefit from custom-designed virtual stores, where they only choose their template and publish their products.
Privacy & Security.
Due to threats to private information on the Internet and the threat of identity theft, it is very important to shop online only at reputable sites. It is also advisable not to provide personal or credit card data if a secure connection is not being used. To ensure that the store is legitimate, you can check, among others, the following:
1) Presence of conditions of use and legal notice.
2) Complete contact information such as the name and address of the company.
3) Seal of trust recognized or recommendation by online supervision systems.
4) Existence of a physical store that is complemented by an online store.
5) System of real opinions managed by a trusted third party.
6) Consumer notice on external sites (buyers, forums, store directories among others).
Disadvantages of purchasing products online.
Among the disadvantages of purchasing products online, there is a lack of knowledge that many of the users have about the store or brand that is sold online. Therefore, it is very important to integrate elements that provide trust, among these, alliances with distributors, security software, payments via Paypal and customer testimonials stand out.
Some additional points to take into account.
Include a user registration system and a rating system. Users classify the seller on the product, delivery times, etc. determining the degree of confidence of the seller and the quality of the product and service. It also directly evaluates the online layout and the format that most closely matches the one you wish to apply to the project, there are web platforms for beginners (such as Shopify and WordPress plus).
When starting a virtual store have ready the budget that will be allocated for the realization of advertising campaigns since they are key to attract customers to your store, such campaigns can be supported by blogs and social networks such as Facebook Ads, YouTube, and Linkedin, and this will depend on the specific target to which your product/service is destined.