If you want inspiration for opening an online digital shop then look no further than Amazon. It all started back in the late 1990’s when they launched their online bookstore. There were many “experts” at the time that said that they would never be successful with their store. It was at a time when there was real skepticism about buying online.
Fast forward to today and Amazon are the world’s third-largest retailer. They are closing in on Walmart and CVS who occupy the top two positions. The Chinese e-commerce company, Alibaba, are also making huge amounts of money with their B2B and B2C business platforms.
In fact, things are getting really tough for conventional brick and mortar stores; American Apparel, Payless and toys R’ us are now bankrupt, and giants like JC Penney and Macy’s are now focusing more of their eCommerce efforts.
What does all of this mean? Well, it means that there are a lot of people who prefer to shop online than visit traditional stores. We will take a look at some of the statistics for this a little later, but it should give you confidence that with the right store and the right marketing you can make a healthy profit, and we are not just looking for profit; We are looking for trust and safety when it comes to our customers and sellers that do business with us.
Setting up a professional online store is not always easy as there are many complexities to overcome. We have made this easy for you at Digital Global. You will be able to open your own fully operational store with shopping cart integration and host it on our domain name. This means that you do not need your own website, domain name or web hosting and you do not have to do any of the hard work. Sell Your Own Products, no fuss, no stress!
People Prefer to Shop Online
In the 1990s when Amazon first started there was a strong resistance from people to shop online, as there was a major concern about security at the time and only the brave would provide their credit card details, and despite this, the number of online shoppers continued to grow each year. Pew Research conducted a survey back in June 2000 and this revealed that just 22% of US citizens had shopped online.
Today 80% of US citizens claim to have shopped online according to a more recent Pew Research report. This report, published in 2016, also highlighted some other very interesting statistics about online shopping.
The end of 2015 survey also reported that 51% of the participants shopped online using a cell phone and 15% purchased online from a link on a social media network; Also in the survey was the fact that 15% of the participants shopped online on a weekly basis, 28% of them purchased online a few times a month and 37% shopped online less often, however, there is no doubt that the digital age is trending into the future, and for good reason; people are shopping more and more online, so why run to your local congested Walmart when you can buy those exact same products online?
There was another study performed more recently by KPMG in early 2017. This was a worldwide survey and there were around 16,000 participants. The survey reported that the participants made an average of 1.25 online purchases a month which is around 17 purchases per year. I can not say for certain how accurate this survey is as it may vary from family to family, but as a family man, I can attest to the fact that our family orders 10-25 products per month online, mostly from Walmart, eBay, and every now, and then, we may buy products on Amazon also which is not my favorite site.
There were different generations participating in this survey. It was interesting to see that there were more online purchases made by Generation X (people born between 1966 and 1981) than the millennial generation who are supposed to be a lot more tech-savvy. The Generation X participants made an average of 19 online purchases a year which was higher than any other age group; We do not know the accuracy of this survey data; We are just repeating facts from another site.
Why do people purchase online than visiting stores in person?
The same KPMG survey asked this question and the reasons given were as follows:
- 58% liked the fact that they could shop 24/7 (convenience)
- 54% said that it was the ability to compare prices (price)
- 46% said that there were often “online sales” and that in general, the prices were better online (price)
- 40% shopped online to save time (convenience)
- 39% liked the convenience of not having to visit stores (preferable to offline)
- 29% said that there were greater variety and a better selection of products online (ease of selection)
- 29% liked the free shipping offers from online stores (free shipping)
- 27% said that having everything in one place was very convenient (convenience)
- 20% said that they could find hard to locate items online (ease of selection)
- 15% liked the fact that they could avoid crowds (preferable to offline)
- 15% said that the products they wanted were not available in stores in their city or country (only option)
- 11% were very happy to avoid long checkout lines (preferable to offline)
Not surprisingly, the convenience factor of online shopping scored the highest here. Price-related factors were a close second and then came avoiding offline problems such as visiting stores, avoiding the crowds and having to wait in long checkout lines.
People can be anywhere and do anything and still shop online. All shoppers need is a smartphone, computer, laptop, or iPad, and a connection to the Internet, and they can be sitting in the comfort of their own homes at night watching TV and browse online stores for what they want. If they want to place an order at 3 am they can do that too, so why waste time going out to those stores when you can just as easily order from your house? Do you like waiting in long lines?
Shoppers want to save money
Price is a very important factor and drives a lot of people to shop online. You will probably not be surprised to learn that around nine out of ten shoppers will compare prices offered by different vendors. They will include offline vendors in this comparison and then make a purchase based on who is offering the lowest price.
Free shipping definitely gives online stores an advantage. If the purchaser knows that the price they see on the page will be exactly the same at the checkout when they are much less likely to abandon the shopping cart and follow through on the transaction. People do not like surprises when it comes to shopping online, and if faced with additional unexpected costs at the checkout then over half of them are likely to abandon the process.
Although price comparisons are also possible offline, it is not a great experience having to go to numerous stores to find the best deal. This can be a very time consuming and tiring process, and then shoppers still don’t know if they could have saved money online. It is hard to beat sitting in the comfort of your own home hunting for the lowest price on your computer or mobile device.
Other reasons why people prefer to shop online
People do not want to walk around with lots of bags: Whether the shopper purchases clothes, groceries, electrical goods or other types of products; they end up with a lot of bags to carry to the car. Why go through all of that when you can have your shopping delivered, thus, allowing you to get on with other important things in your life? Fact check, I hate having to carry 10-20 bags of whatever I bought into the house! It really sucks!
Shoppers can hide the fact that they have made an embarrassing purchase, and this happens to all of us; Maybe we were just not in our right minds at the time or even under the influence of alcohol. A purchase of an embarrassing product done in a store is in full view of everyone. If the shopper buys the same product online then they can keep it a secret, am I right?
There is no pressure when shopping online: Consider your clothes shopping expedition offline. There is always pressure from sales assistants trying to meet their monthly goals. They will tell you that you look wonderful in all of the garments that you try on, and if you end up buying the wrong garment because of this pressure you have the undignified task of returning this to the store for a refund or exchange.
When shopping online, shoppers can order three different dresses instead of one and then try them on at home under no pressure whatsoever. When they have made their choice, then they just send back the other two for a refund. There is nobody standing next to them being insincere and just pushing for a sale.
Online stores are smart and will present shoppers with more choices: When shoppers go into a store to purchase something it is pretty unlikely that the seller will tell them that other customers of the same item also purchased a complimentary item. Online stores will do this and a lot of people will order the complimentary item as well. If found one product online, then you may see similar products and may like that one better then your first choice.
Gift shopping is a lot easier: There is a birthday coming up for someone in the family and the shopper has no clue what to get them. It is so much easier to look for gift ideas online than it is to trudge around different stores. If shoppers plan ahead they can have the gift delivered the next day and also include a note with their gift.
Online shopping reviews are very powerful: These are unbiased and there is no equivalent in offline stores; A lot of people will decide on purchasing a product or not purchasing it based on the reviews left by other customers. No product is perfect and online shoppers expect that there will be a small number of negative reviews. But if overall it is positive then the product is likely to sell well, and always leave honest reviews.
It is less tempting to make purchases that are not really necessary: Most people have visited stores and ended up buying things that they did not really need just because they were there, and some shoppers cannot even remember placing a specific item in their basket but go ahead and buy it anyway; With online shopping, it is easier to stay focused and just purchase what is really necessary.
Why you should open your own digital store
The bottom line here is that a digital online marketplace provides the potential for you to make healthy profits without the need for a huge investment in inventory, and other significant expenditures such as renting a shop in a prime location and paying for staff. You can literally start an online store for next to nothing and with Digital Global you don’t even need to purchase a domain name and have your own website.
The demand for online shopping is certainly there. Every year the number of online transactions rises, and the anticipated total for online shopping sales by the year 2021 is $4.5 trillion. Retail ecommerce sales figures demonstrate the increase in demand for online shopping.
In the second quarter end of 2016, online purchases were at 8% of total retail sales with online shoppers spending $96 billion. A year later in the second quarter of 2017, the number of online purchases represented 16% of total retail sales. It is in your interest to capitalize on this growing trend by opening your own digital store.
What exactly is Ecommerce?
It is simply the act of selling products and services online. Buyers like the convenience offered to them by digital stores making their lives easier. There is also the opportunity to sell products and services to people that are in far away locations or even in other countries. This is not easy to do with a conventional retail store.
There have been many advancements in e-commerce technology over the years. The first digital stores appeared in the 1990s with companies like eBay and Amazon leading the way, and as the Internet grew in popularity, so did the number of digital stores, and shopping cart technology became more secure, and there were other technical developments that benefited both sellers and shoppers.
E-commerce transactions can take place for business to consumers (B2C), business to business (B2B) and even consumer to consumer (C2C) through sites such as eBay, and If you are in the B2C market then it is important that you appeal to the emotions of your customers, as purchases tend to be more spontaneous and driven by the wants and needs of consumers, and if you do not know what consumers are looking for, then how will they know?
In the B2B market, there is less emotion involved in purchases. Business customers will tend to purchase with a greater purpose than B2C customers will. If you are selling to businesses then you need to pay specific attention to product descriptions and be sure to list all of the features and benefits of the products you are selling.
What are you going to sell?
You may think this is obvious but it is really important that you think carefully about what products you are going to sell in your digital store. Are you going to sell digital products such as software or training courses or will you go for physical products? Whatever you decide it is vital that you are passionate about all of the products in your store and do not forget to market your most profitable products, and Digital Global will do the same, unlike some of the other online digital shop platforms you may currently be using, Digital Global actually cares about your overall success.
If you are going to sell physical products how will you approach this? Will you carry your own inventory or use the services of a drop shipping company? If you want to hold your own inventory then you will have to be prepared to make an investment in the products that you will display in your store. IMO, Digital Global does not allow drop-shipping if your business is not the source-shipper. For instance, if you use aliexpress for product orders, then you are not the source-shipper, and your visitors will not want to wait 6-8 weeks in order to get their order, and they should not have too! Let’s say you (the seller) is the buyer, do you want to want to wait 6-8 weeks to get your order?
If you already manufacture your own products then you will need to predict the demand as accurately as possible so that you won’t disappoint customers with out of stock products. If the demand is bigger than you predicted you may have to outsource additional production if this is even possible, however, you (the seller) must be the direct shipper, needless to say, customers do not when companies cannot keep up with demand.
What will your policy be with shipping products to your customers? We mentioned earlier that a lot of online shoppers prefer digital stores that offer free shipping. If your products are fairly unique then this does not become so much of an issue, as they will not be available in many other digital stores. Shipping costs will be dependent on the weight and size of your products. As a business, these are the struggles that you have to face in order to capture that buyer, and we will help your business in any way that we can, even if this includes sending your promotion out through our mailing list.
Assess the Competition
It is very likely that someone else will be selling the same product, or one very similar to yours, so you need to work out why your offer is better and make sure that your potential customers know this. Ask yourself the question “why would I buy products from my store when there are many other digital stores offering the same or similar products?” Never-ever sell low-quality products, as this would be your first mistake.
Take a good look at the competition before you decide to sell any product line in your digital store. How are they positioning the products? What prices are they charging? Do they have any special offers? If they charge for shipping what is the cost? Are the product descriptions they are using persuasive?
One of the ways that you can differentiate from competitors is to provide expertise to your purchasers; because people really do appreciate being advised by experts and will even pay a higher price for a product if they receive expertise along with it. If you are not currently an expert on your products then make it your mission to become one so that you can really add value, and respond to customer emails as soon as you can.
Providing great customer service is a no-brainer but this is an area where a lot of digital stores fall down. If customers ask you questions about your product range then respond to them quickly and in full. If a customer contacts you to complain or request a refund then deal with this calmly and professionally, and word will soon get around to your store if your customer service is top notch. We always recommend that you offer a 30 day refund, as this will give buyers more confidence that they can do business with your store, with the exception of digital-downloads, once the digital-download has been accessed, then it can not be returned, and the exception to this rule is if the merchant mislead the buyer in any fashion.
Is your Competition using SEO? Let’s say your competition is on eBay or Amazon. We see many internet sellers across the internet that do not use high-quality content, and not only that, the content they use is duplicate content that they use when they sell on multiple platforms that may have been written by a low-quality writer. If you want to outshine your competition, then your content needs to be high quality, non-duplicate content, using appropriate keywords, and written in a natural manner for human readers, and not for the purpose of Google. If you follow our advice, then we can help you rank your profitable products higher in Digital Global Online Marketplace. What is your current platform doing for you?
Create a Plan for your Digital Store
Create a business plan for your digital store which includes all aspects including marketing. This needs to be a detailed plan and show all of the expenses that you are going to incur running your store such as inventory, shipping, taxes, online costs, packaging and so on. It is vital that you take everything into account so that you can calculate your profit margins accurately.
A good plan will help you to take the necessary steps to achieve the goals that you have for your digital store. An example of this would be starting off with a small range of products and then reinvesting profits to add additional products to your store.
You also need a detailed marketing plan, and without good marketing, you are unlikely to make your digital store a success. Don’t fall into the “build it and they will come” trap. If nobody knows about your digital store and what you have to offer, then you will not make any money.
How will your customers pay you?
You must have a method of accepting payments from customers for the products in your store. Most people will want to pay using a credit card, so you will need a merchant account or a reputable payment processor to handle these payments.
Merchant accounts have to be set up with a bank and they can be difficult to obtain and are usually expensive. To start with you should use a credible payment processor such as PayPal or 2 Checkout. With these payment processors, you will pay a transaction fee when you receive money. Do your homework and find the best deal that you can.
A lot of online shoppers have PayPal accounts so it would be good to add this as a payment method to increase your chances of making the sale. You can set up an account with PayPal or a 2 Checkout account as they accept PayPal as a payment method. You can link your PayPal account to your bank and withdraw money that way. 2 Checkout will send funds to any bank in the world once you have reached the payment threshold.
When you open your digital store with Digital Global then you do not have to worry about opening up your own merchant account, and you will be able to use our own pay processors, and currently, we support PayPal, and stripe for adaptive payments, and what does this mean? It means when someone makes a purchase from your store, then funds will be deposited directly into your account, and a commission is sent to Digital Global, however, we may support escrow payment options in the future if there is demand, and what does this mean? It means when someone makes a purchase from your store, then the money is safely escrowed into our account, then you (the merchant or seller) will process the order, and once your customer receives their order, then the payment would be released to the merchant, and why would I want this? This would be good for Digital Services that can not be considered a digital download product and/or service or physical goods that can be shipped directly by the merchant or seller.
What about Marketing?
You will need to market your digital shop so that you can sell a lot of your products and make it a success. It is pointless having a great digital shop if nobody knows about it. You need to create a marketing plan and consider several marketing options to make your store popular and profitable.
Promoting on social media is a must. Facebook and Twitter are important and so is Pinterest. People tend to underestimate the power of Pinterest but many other digital store owners have used it successfully to promote their products. You need to identify your target audience first and then use the most appropriate social media platforms to reach out to them.
Facebook Insights is great for identifying target audiences. You have the option of using Facebook ads to target your audience and these can work well. You can also join related Facebook groups and even create your own group for your niche.
Consider these marketing tactics for your store:
- Social media platforms
- Social media advertising with retargeting
- PPC advertising
- SEO optimization of product pages
- Email marketing
- Content marketing
- Create a loyalty program
- Video marketing
- Encourage customer reviews
Create Your Own Digital Shop
You can set up any kind of digital store with Digital Global JV™ as long as it is legal; Your store will include the Digital Global domain name in it so the sky is the limit. If you want to sell digital products you can. No matter where you are in the world you can open a digital shop with Digital Global JV™.
There are many different digital store solutions out there, and if you wanted to go for one of them then you will need to prepare yourself for some technical challenges. It can be pretty complex to set up a digital store correctly and if you experience problems then it can take a while for the support people to respond and help you.
So ask yourself this question – “Is it worth your time and the potential stress to try and go it alone with your digital store?” We would say that it definitely isn’t worth your while. You should be spending all of your time on marketing your digital store and the products in it. There are certainly no profits in setting your own store up and sending support emails.
Marketing and Promotional Tools
Management of your digital store all happens from a great administration panel which is both simple to use and comprehensive in its features. There are several menus in the admin panel and it will take a maximum of 3 clicks to edit any setting. It will not take you long to master the admin panel – most people do this in less than 2 hours.
If you are on the move a lot then you can manage your Digital Global store from your mobile device. You can download an app for either Android or iOS and then you will be able to access your admin panel from your phone or tablet.
Your store from Digital Global will have a number of built-in marketing tools. We know how important the marketing of your store is so we have included features such as the ability to give reward points for loyalty, customer bonuses, tools for cross-selling to encourage your customers to spend more.
You will be able to generate call requests for simplified ordering and this will also help you to generate leads. Do you want to open more stores? You can do this easily with our multi-store feature. We have included these tools to help you increase your sales and profits.
When you log in to your admin panel you will have access to a Promotions section, and there are many different conditions available here. For example, you can set up the conditions that a customer has to meet to qualify for a bonus. This takes seconds to set up and you are ready to go.
There are a variety of options that you can offer such as gift certificates, discounts, free shipping, special user group invitations, and others. All of these promotions are there to stimulate the growth of your sales as well as attract new customers.
You will no doubt be aware of the 80/20 rule which means that a group of your existing customers will provide you with the most revenue, and with this in mind, you need to do everything that you can to keep these customers loyal to your store. One of the best ways to do this is through a rewards program and your Digital Global store has this feature, and that is not the best part, digital global offers an advanced affiliate program.
When your customers make a purchase, then you can reward them with loyalty points so that they will come back and make more purchases. Another feature of your Digital Global store is the ability to setup VIP groups. Once a customer has VIP status, you can offer them incentives such as access to products that other customers don’t have and free shipping.
Once your Digital Global store starts to become popular you will want to boost your income by persuading them to buy more from you. You can use the cross-selling function in your store as well as other tools for up-selling in order to increase the number of purchases that each customer makes. Features here include products on sale, customers also purchased, best-selling products and required products.
You will be able to attract additional customers and reward existing customers through the issuing of gift certificates. You can give gift certificates to existing customers so they can provide them as a gift to their family and friends, and you will be able to promote your gift certificates in other ways to entice new customers to your online store.
Not everyone that wants to purchase something from your store will want to register. This is no problem with your Digital Global store as you will have a “one-click purchase” facility so that you do not lose these customers. When a customer clicks this, then they will generate a call request and you can call back and confirm the order. The order will be automatically created in the admin panel, and waiting for you to process the order.
A lot of Digital Global store owners want to open additional digital stores. This is no problem as the multi-store facility will allow you to easily do this. It is simple for you to set up additional storefronts in your admin panel. With different storefronts, you can experiment with your product mix, pricing, your target audience, and other marketing tactics.
Providing your customers with different payment options is always a good idea and your Digital Global store features over 50 payment processors and gateways such as PayPal, 2 Checkout, Skrill, SagePay, AuthorizeNet and more. There are 8 shipping variants for very reputable carriers such as UPS, FedEx, USPS, and DHL. Give your customers a great choice of payment options and shipping services with your Digital Global store.
Search Engine Optimization
We know how important it is for your store pages to rank in Google and the other search engines so we have a number of powerful SEO tools that will help you to optimize your pages perfectly. There is no need for you to hire SEO experts as your pages should rank fairly easily in a few months by using the built-in SEO tools. Keep in mind that SEO is often a long-term process, and if you are going to be here for the long haul, then we will be here for you every step of the way, as we also offer free SEO promotion for top sellers, and if you think about it, we will be helping each other in success.
By using your Best SEO tools, you will be able to keep Google happy as your URL’s will be SEO friendly, and you can create rich snippets that Google loves and perform 301 redirects; All of the required meta tags can be easily implemented giving you the maximum chance to rank your pages high as possible, however, we strongly advise that our merchants and sellers use high-quality content that has never been published on the internet.
Another factor that affects rankings in Google is the time that it takes your pages to load. This is page load speed. If it takes more than three seconds for a store page to load then it is very likely that the customer will look elsewhere. Your Digital Global store pages will score at least 92 points out of 100 with the Google page load speed test, and they have more chance of ranking higher in the search engines than slower loading sites.
Managing your Digital Store
When it comes to options management you will find that your Digital Global store is very flexible. You can set up product variations such as different colors and sizes easily. Each variation becomes a separate physical product. Loading multiple images is easy and so is setting individual prices. You can also specify in stock notifications, price lists, and SKU’s.
Updates to your Digital Global will happen around six times per year to add new features and fix any issues that may arise, and we also keep our finger on any potential security threats, and if we discover any new potential threats then these are immediately fixed.
Your Digital Global store comes with a visual layout editor, and with a lot of digital store solutions, then you are stuck with the layout of your pages unless you pay for expensive coding work to change this, and with our visual layout editor you will have drag and drop capability to organize your pages just as you want them. You can add banners, rearrange blocks of information and do a whole host of other things.
If you want to change the look and feel of your Digital Global store then you can do this easily as we will offer you more than 200 incredible themes that look truly amazing. Installing a new theme is very easy using your admin panel.
There is also a built-in theme editor which will allow you to change the background of your store, the fonts that are used, the color scheme and more. You can create virtually any style that you want without the need to know anything about CSS or HTML coding.
All good digital stores have additional content to help their customers and your Digital Global store has an excellent content management system (CMS). You can use the CMS to add pages to your site which are SEO optimized very easily. The page editor is WYSIWYG and it is very easy for you to add great looking pages very quickly, and you will need a professional looking store, along with high-quality products in order to attract buyers.
Your customers will have the option to change the language of your store and the currency. Ten of the most popular languages will be included in your Digital Global store, never worry about language barriers again, and Product prices are converted on the fly.
Check out pages in your Digital Global store are very natural and user-friendly. The steps required for checkout appear to customers on a single page which they will appreciate. Everything is clear and intuitive which is very different from the checkout processes offered by a lot of other digital store solutions.
Your customers will be able to leave reviews of your products and other comments with your Digital Global store. Reviews are very powerful and will help you to sell more products as well as attract new customers to your digital store. If you do not want to get bad reviews, then answer questions ASAP, and ship products as soon as possible, as a shop owner, then you need to be able to solve issues very quickly, thus making customers happy.
You will have complete visibility of the customer cart and will be able to see why customers abandon their carts and do not complete their purchases. If there is a bottleneck in your store then this will be easy to find and fix. You can also offer those customers that abandoned carts bonuses to come back and complete their purchases.
Learning and Support
You will not require any technical or other specialized knowledge to operate your Digital Global store. We will provide you with video lessons and supporting documentation so that you can master your digital store with ease following step by step instructions, and with the videos and documentation you will be able to find the answers that you need to around 90% of questions, and you can always contact support anytime.
We will provide you with over 50 step by step videos that will show you how to do almost everything with your digital store. There are videos on general settings, appearance settings, design, product management, handling customers, payments and shipping, order management, content management, marketing, and SEO, and if you need more assistance, then please visit DG Forum, as we would like our members to help each other.
Should you have a question that falls outside of this 90% then our highly trained support staff will be delighted to help you. Our engineers know the Digital Global store inside out and will offer friendly advice fast no matter where you may live around the world.
So the major benefits of opening a Digital Global store are:
- Proven and robust store software that has been in use since 2005
- Sell digital products, physical products or both
- Powerful marketing tools such as cross-selling tools, discounts and bonuses, loyalty points and VIP groups
- No requirement for a domain name, web hosting or a website
- Powerful store management facilities using your simplified control panel
- SEO optimization tools to rank your pages in Google and other search engines
- Over 50 payment processor/gateway solutions and shipping options
- Customer friendly checkout process for lower cart abandonment
- A powerful content management system
- Highly secure hacker-proof store
- Language and currency options
- Drag and drop visual layout editor
- Easy to install attractive store themes
- Theme editor for customization
- Step by step training videos and documentation
- Excellent support from a knowledgeable and experienced team
And so much more…
There has never been a better time to open your own digital store, so what are you waiting for?
People are making more purchases from online digital stores than ever before, and digital eCommerce is trending upwards in today’s market where everyone is buying their goods online, and you only have to look at the success achieved by companies like Amazon and Alibaba to see that this is true. This trend is definitely going to continue into the future, and the forecast for digital store sales over the next few years is staggering.
In order to profit from this trend, you need a professional digital store that has all of the features that you require to be successful. A Digital Global store offers you this and setting up your own store is so easy. There is no need for you to have your own domain name and hosting or install and configure complex store software.
If you want to have a successful digital store you need to take action right now. The longer you wait, the more likely it is that your competitors will dominate your niche and leave you with a very small piece of the pie. Create Your Store! Waiting for someone else to beat you to the punch, again.
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