In the same way as the journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step, it’s the first online sale that sets your eCommerce store in motion.

Making your first sale may sound simple enough to some, but it’s not always that easy. Sometimes, acquiring that first customer for can prove to be a struggle. Regardless of how difficult or easy it was, your first online sale can be the motivation that carries you onward, towards building a successful eCommerce business.

Below are some important tips that will help make your first online sale easy and enjoyable.

1) Choose the Right eCommerce Software
Before anything else can go right, you have to set your online store up with the best web store building software.  This is an often underappreciated step, as some may be tempted to look for freeware or the cheapest software that will get the job done.  It’s not really necessary to skimp on this important step, however, as high-quality eCommerce platforms can be found at very reasonable costs these days.  Starting at around $30 a month, you can ensure your store has a competent team behind it.  If you choose a platform like PinnacleCart eCommerce, all of your design, storage, SEO, marketing, traffic, support, social media, security, management and more will be taken care of.  They even have a Professional Services division that can help you with specific needs like marketing, content, custom store design, and more.  So please, first thing first, go with a trusted, reputable platform that has years of experience in eCommerce. That choice plays the biggest role in your first online sale and the overall success of your eCommerce store.

2) Run PPC Ads
Launching a paid advertising campaign is another surefire way of making that first eCommerce store sale – and then some. It’s a great way for new web stores to get their name out there, too.  Targeted ads make it easy to reach out to potential customers and drive them to your online store. Facebook Adverts and Google AdWords are two of the most effective options that you can use to run a paid campaign. Before you get started, however, you should read up on how to build and launch successful advertising campaigns on each of these platforms.

If you have never used Facebook Adverts before, it’s highly recommended that you go through the Facebook Adverts Guide.

first online sale

Making your first online sale will lift your spirits and give you the motivation to become a success!

3) Create an Affiliate Program
Affiliate marketing should be set up pretty quickly after you launch your online business.  Why?  Because it provides you with an opportunity to involve others, partners who will help you market your products. When a sale happens due to their effort, you give them a small percentage of that sale. By having an affiliate program in place, you can give other people your affiliate link and they’ll post it on different online channels. They may write about it in blogs, mention it on social media, or use other creative ways to share.  Any sale made via that affiliate link (identified with a unique ID) can be easily tracked.  It’s a win-win situation for you and your affiliate marketers.

4) Send Out a Press Release
Publishing a press release is a great way to garner popularity over a short period of time. And what’s better to write about than the opening of an awesome new eCommerce store?! But the success of your press release depends on whether it’s newsworthy or not. A lousy press release will fail to make a hit.

Here are some points on what makes a killer press release –

  • An idea that piques interest
  • Timing
  • Specificity
  • Minimum technical jargon
  • In-depth resources

While you write the press release focusing on these essential components, you should also remember to choose a good news distribution service so that your press release gets the coverage it needs and can be syndicated on relevant publisher sites.

5) Announce an Online Contest
Do you have a Facebook page for your online store? If yes, you should immediately put together a contest to popularize your online store there. Ask your friends and family to help share the your store’s FB page and your first promotions. Online contests and giveaways don’t just help you create trust, but they can also help you acquire valuable inbound links for better positioning in search engine results.

To launch a contest, you can use online services like –

Online contests don’t cost you an arm and a leg. Anybody can run them without having to stretch their budget.

6) Reach Out to Influencer Marketers with Free Samples
You’ll find influencers in every industry or niche. You may also be in touch with many of them. Check your social media friends and followed lists. If you are, you should immediately leverage influencer targeting which is a proven tactic to create awareness about your online store.

All you need to do is send a free sample of your product to well-established bloggers, writers, journalists, social media experts and online marketers in your industry. Hopefully, they’ll appreciate the free gift and give it a mention in front of their loyal audiences on various online platforms they use. This, in turn, will attract potential eyeballs and you’ll most likely make that first sale.

If you recently launched your new online store, you’re probably both excited and nervous about the outcome.  Though there’s still a lot to learn, these tips will ensure that you attract potential customers and make that first sale with the least amount of effort. And once that first customer is in, you’ll have to motivation and momentum you need to carry on. 

Have you made your first online sale? We’d love to hear how you did it in the comments below.  We’ll also answer any eCommerce questions you have in the comments below. 🙂