10 Wrecking eCommerce Business Mistakes You Must Avoid

by op-ed contributor
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When you say something is deadly, it can destroy or cause harm. Many eCommerce businesses do not exist anymore due to some mistakes they made. 

An example is the RMS Titanic. One of the world’s largest British liners in the early 1900s experienced a shipwreck when it struck an iceberg. It struck an iceberg, which dug a deep gash in the ship’s hull. Water flooded into the Titanic, the ship sank, and over 1500 lives were lost. 

Why? The ship sank because it ignored the warning of an iceberg ahead in the waters. A fatal mistake!

Many online businesses have also experienced this— they struck a mass of mishaps (made a deadly mistake), and a flood of debt, cyber-attacks, and disreputation, gushed into their business and made them sink. 

According to Forbes, Marketing Signals, and Huffington Post; “90% of eCommerce startups fail within their 120 days.” This isn’t to scare you, that’s just the fact. But you don’t want this to happen to you. You want a business that is failure-proof. You must be conscious of these mistakes and avoid them at all costs.

This article will list these mistakes eCommerce businesses make and tell you how to avoid them.

Deadly eCommerce Mistakes to Avoid

Dean Smith, a legendary basketball coach, once said; “What do you do with a mistake; recognize it, admit it, learn from it, never forget it.” With the mistakes that are going to be discussed, you want to do the things as listed by Dean Smith:

  • Recognize the mistakes and pay full cognizance to them.
  • Admit that these mistakes are deadly and could harm your business if not avoided.

You may have made any of these mistakes before, which has negatively affected your business. You want to learn from them and never make them again. After all, Henry Ford said; “The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.”

Remember those mistakes. Remember them until they become a subconscious part of you. Remembering them enables you not to want to commit them.

  1. Lack of outstanding brand identity

Brand identity is a set of all essential parts that a company, organization, or business uses to express itself to the public. 

Many eCommerce businesses never take enough time and resources to work on their brand identity. They think their products are good and irresistible enough to troop in customers; that’s where they fail. 

Never think that you don’t need to invest quality time and resources to have an outstanding brand identity because your products will do a great work for you.

What should you do?

Brand identity encompasses your logo, colour, design, name, shape, fonts, and other visual elements. Make sure that all these elements are carefully chosen and centre on what your brand represents. If your brand represents reliability, high-quality, elegance, etc., let them be seen in all these visual elements.

What’s your vision? What’s your mission? What’s your value? Do you have any at all? These are what should be your drive.

  1. Failure to plan startup cost

A business that fails to plan, plans to fail. Like every other business store, eCommerce needs proper planning for the total costs expended. Many eCommerce businesses have crashed because they failed to plan their startup costs. This shouldn’t apply to yours, you should ensure that every cost is out to account.

What should you do?

You should know and consider how much is needed to keep your business up and to run. Getting a professional and well-designed website, hiring a team, marketing, and purchasing the needed software all come at a cost.

You must be prepared and plan for them. If you don’t plan your cost, overspending might occur, which harms your business.

  1. Poor search visibility

Search engine visibility is very important to every online business, as this makes more people aware of their products or services. But it’s pretty unfortunate that many eCommerce businesses don’t have an improved or high rank on search engines when specific keywords are being searched. 

Search engine optimization (SEO) is something you should consider so that your customers can find your business site at the highest part of search results. Moreover, pay-per-click (PPC) could be expensive to be afforded on a consistent level, but with SEO, you can keep the bank.

What should you do?

It’s fine not to know how to go about it. You could get your business SEO specialists or writers to help you with SEO-friendly web content.

Read Also: How to Increase Visibility for Your Business in Nigeria

  1. Poor product image

You’ve heard this saying; “a picture speaks a thousand words.” Using poor photography for your product image is a great mistake in selling your products. Whoever wants to buy something, primarily online, would have to look at the image of what they want to buy.

When they see that the image is blurry and not worth buying, they ignore it for something else. Poor product image reduces your chances of selling that product.

What should you do?

Take clear, eye-catching photographs of your products. Ensure that the photographs are taken from different angles so your customers can see the different visual dimensions of your products.

If unsure of the quality, you can draw inspiration from top eCommerce stores to see how their products are shot. Or, you can hire a professional photographer to help you do the job.

  1. Lack of good customer service

Imagine going to a retail store. On getting there, you saw no attendant. Or, you probably saw an attendant, but you got treated harshly. How would you feel? Bad, right? You should ensure that your users don’t have that kind of experience with your eCommerce business.

A good business with good customer service wins the heart of its customers. It shows good credibility.

What should you do?

You must be ready to serve your customers and be there for them. Your service to them must be as friendly as it can. Ensure that they have a good experience with your business, or else they won’t come your way next time.

  1. Bad website design and functioning

Whenever users come to your website, they first notice its appearance, whether consciously or unconsciously. This shows how important this is. The design and the functioning of your site determine whether customers will stay. When you have a terrible web design, users find it difficult to believe you and the quality of what you sell or do. Bad website design distracts users.

When you have a poorly functioning website, users find it hard to navigate, which may result in them leaving it.

What should you do?

Ensure that your website is attractive. Also, ensure it is efficient and easy to navigate and interact with. Getting a professional website developer can ease this stress. 

Read Also: Free Tools for Building an Ecommerce Website

  1. Choosing the wrong products to sell

Many entrepreneurs dive into selling any product with the sole purpose of making massive profits. They end up selling the wrong products and need to make profits and sales in the long run.

What should you do?

Before finally settling to sell a product, ask yourself these questions:

  • Is the product solving any problem?
  • Is it in high demand?
  • Is it profitable?
  • Why should I sell it?
  • How do I consistently source for the product?

Read Also: 20 Advantages and Disadvantages of Running an Ecommerce Business in Nigeria

  1. Outrageous pricing

Your business is on the verge of failing when you put high prices on your products because you want to invest more money. You can’t generate sales that way. Do you know why? High prices scare your customers away, while low or affordable ones attract customers.

This does not mean that you should lower your prices to your detriment. No. Every pricing should depend on the cost of your products. However, they must be affordable.

What should you do?

Avoid placing a high price on your products to gain high profit. It can be harmful to your business.

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  1. Problem of checkout

Shopping has been made ready by making all your purchases over the internet, rather than going the brick-and-store way. But things start going south for online businesses when customers need help paying for goods or services to be bought.

Nobody wants to go through a difficult time finally making a purchase online. Complicated payment processes frustrate customers, and hence, they leave your website for a stress-free alternative.

What should you do?

Ensure that your checkout processes are as simple as can be. Incorporate multiple payment options, as customers will be left to choose one. 

Their details, when inputting them, must be safe and not breached, so you will not soil your reputation

  1. Obscure and high shipping charge

This is not good for the well-being of your business. Every customer wants transparency, and you must give them by not hiding your shipping charge. High shipping charge is one of the major reasons many eCommerce businesses do not make sales.

What should you do?

Ensure that the price of your shipping charge is glaringly displayed.

Also, try to lower your shipping charge. You can do free shipping sometimes. This makes you sell more—people love free things.


It’s very easy for business owners to avoid these costly errors. But having walked you through them, you now understand what effects they can incur. And you now know that they’re something you want to avoid at all costs.

 If you find yourself making those mistakes already, there’s no better way than to admit that they’re the ones sapping your ceaseless effort to make your business grow and thrive. Learn from them and make moves to shun them in every way.

Hey! Join Insight’s WhatsApp community today. There’s so much we have to offer you as a budding entrepreneur.

About the Author

Popoola Joshua is a content writer and marketer. He writes SEO-driven content that’s relevant and valuable to attract and engage a specified target audience. If he doesn’t write, he spends time reading self-help books, and surfing the web for valuable trends in this economic world.

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Op-Ed are articles published by guest authors. We no longer accept guest posts. However, we are still open to adding long-term content contributors to our team of insightful writers. To write for us, please check out inisght.ng/guest-post.

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