Planning to Start an Online Business? Top Lazada Seller Isaac Saliendra Shows the way to Success - mybusinessacademy.ph
Jan 14, 2022
Planning to Start an Online Business? Top Lazada Seller Isaac Saliendra Shows the way to Success
Have your heart set on starting an online business? Check out top Lazada seller Isaac Saliendra’s guide before you make your major move.
If you have a product or service that you think will break the online market, you’re in luck. The digital marketplace is bigger than ever. Beyond websites, e-commerce expanded to social media and selling platforms like Lazada.
Business owner Isaac Saliendra of Peculiar and Odd Eyewear, for example, shares how he started from being a one-man online team, to a business with 50 employees. He recalls how he started worrying about dilemmas such as running a business from a small, 10-square meter room in San Mateo, Rizal 5 years ago.
“Then I got the idea of joining platforms, like Lazada. Because in Lazada, we don’t think of overcharges or any cost in maintaining the store. The only focus that I need to have is my inventory and my packing operations,” he shared.
Isaac’s story shows how you can keep your brand visible online despite strong competition. Remember that everyone wants to get a piece of buyers’ attention. Starting a small business online is more than just having something to sell and a platform to showcase them.
To become a successful online entrepreneur, you have to keep important points in mind:
- Carefully study your target market.
- Conceptualize your brand.
- Build and retain (and grow) your client base.
You also have to stay up-to-date with the latest marketing and tech trends to keep your audience hooked.
Here’s a four-step guide to help you mentally pack for your journey towards online business success:
KNOW WHAT YOUR MARKET REALLY WANTS
Ask business experts what advice they would give to new entrepreneurs, and one of the most common thing you’ll hear them say is this: satisfy a need. Creating a financially sustainable business is making sure there’s demand for it. And the first step to discovering in-demand products and services is market study.
Set your goals, find out who your target audience is, and get to know your market well. You can learn more about these here.
After pinpointing these, you can now gather actual data. Market research professionals can help you. You can also conduct your own focus group discussions or surveys (whether online or on-ground). Give participants free samples of your product or service to get them to join. This way, everyone gets something in return.
As Isaac mentioned, “As an owner, I believe that you need to focus on the customer first, second is your employees, and last is your shareholders or the owner of the company.” Prioritize your market’s needs and you’ll know how to go about product development, services, and even company changes.
DESIGN, CREATE, AND STAND OUT
Branding helps you make a great first impression. While branding is a broad concept, new online MSMEs can focus on business’ aesthetics and how your message is communicated through it. Some guidelines to remember when you come up with these are:
- Brand/product/service name. After naming your objective in the previous step, list down keywords that speak to you the most. Make combinations. Imagine yourself using this name. Does it show what you stand for? Is it catchy enough? Mark which ones tick “yes.”
- Logo. Before consulting with an artist, think of the following – which symbols best represent your chosen name? What color palette creates the perfect mood? List these down so you can help the artist create the perfect visual elements. You should be able to reuse it in all your collaterals in different ways. Creating a design rationale also helps you process why and how you choose elements related to your business.
- Brand personality. Creating a brand profile helps you choose the language and characteristics your business will use. This will enhance the shopping experience you’ll be providing online. Giving your brand a personality makes it easier to relate to your target audience.
Planning how to package your brand and interact with customers to create memorable impressions. It will not only establish you as a reputable online seller, but also as a go-to place to shop. It’s about finding what appeals to your market so that you’ll stand out in the online selling crowd.
Remember that you don’t need a big budget for this. A compelling and authentic social media presence is a good start that’s free. Be consistent across all your platforms, including the ones you’re building (ex. website, online shop, customer service hub). This will allow you to communicate your products and services more clearly.
Isaac further advised, “The most important aspect of selling online is your photo. Because in reality, we are not selling a product in Lazada. We are just selling a photo with a nice description.” He said to keep reality vs. expectation in mind. In packaging your products online, photos and descriptions have to be as close to the actual item as possible. Be descriptive as well.
PROVIDE GREAT CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE
Every time you interact with your customers, it’s a chance to capture their hearts and earn their loyalty. To grab that opportunity, give a great customer experience.
Make sure every step of the shopping process is easy and convenient.
From your target customers visiting your store, making a purchase, to receiving their orders, it’s your responsibility to deliver the best experience. Here are a few tips on how you can do just that in the digital marketplace:
- Create a friendly interface. Your online hub should be easy to navigate. Don’t let customers get lost trying to find their way around your products and services. Make sure everything is in order and all links are working. A well-designed interface points customers to your contact info easily, too. This allows you to address their issues right away.
- Ensure data privacy. You’ll be dealing with transactions that may involve sensitive information, such as home addresses and credit card numbers. Make sure your system is secure and transparent (to your customers). This includes how and where all these information will be used.
- Deliver on time. Whether it’s delivering your customers’ actual purchase or just giving important feedback, be prompt. The last thing you want to do is to get your customers excited about their orders and having that excitement go away with delays!
Keeping your buyers hooked also goes with good customer experience. This way, you attract them to learn more about your business and return for more purchases.
When it comes to discounts and price points to hook your customers, Isaac shared how he finds the balance between profit and a good deal. “Some items you will have good margin, some none, some even negative. Or we call it ‘pamigay nalang natin yan.’ But the greater idea is the whole picture. Some items you can have good margins so, you get your loss from that ‘pamigay item’ to your high-margin products,” he said, and added “Always see data, margin, and two perspectives. First is macro and second is micro. Both are meaningful towards your understanding of online sale.”
He also added, “Lazada always provides us tools to increase our sales, like seller picks, free shipping, collaborative ads, and vouchers. As a Lazada trainer, I always mention to my trainees the importance of these tools to have great sales during mega promotions. The biggest comparison was an increase of 750% [in sales when using the tools]. It always excites me when mega campaigns are near [like 12.12]. Planning is the key to have successful promotions.”
Studies show that people who’ve had a great experience shopping in a certain online store are bound to buy again. The chances improve dramatically when the store stays in contact with the customer, especially when it has special offers.
Staying in touch with your customers helps your business run through its own customer base.“Customer feedback is the best way to know if your product will be successful. If they have an issue about your product, we ask them what is the main issue. Then we try to solve it. Our main objective is to provide good products to all our customers, because customer satisfaction is our primary goal,” Isaac added.
Here are a few final reminders on how you can stay connected:
- Always be on and online. You need good and reliable internet connectivity to keep customer-relations strong. Stable internet is also important for digital solutions you plan to use for operations, marketing, and even personnel management. Even with a small budget, you can avail of fast, reliable internet connection through Globe myBusiness’ Prepaid Internet (for as low as PHP1,999 a month.)
- Send relevant notifications and updates on time. Complement your online business with SMS-supported tools like GlobeLabs’ M360. It lets you send exclusive promos or important announcements through SMS from all local networks.
- Reward loyal customers. It’s one sure way to keep meaningful and lasting connections with them. Globe myBusiness’ RUSH, for example, lets you create, design, and manage your own customer loyalty program easily.
Starting a business online is a great way to kick off your entrepreneurial journey. With these online business tips, you’ll be more than ready to take on business challenges. You’ll experience the success that you’re always meant to achieve!