JD Duarte


Jose Duarte explains how an eCommerce business should identify its market opportunities

Like any good entrepreneur, the search for market opportunities is something that is accompanied by a lot of anxiety. It is difficult to start from scratch and create a new line of business, but even more so if you do it in a competitive and constantly changing market. Jose Duarte, an entrepreneur and eCommerce expert from Costa Rica, discusses how an eCommerce business can analyze the commercial market and identify new opportunities.

Thanks to the eCommerce sector, you can achieve a competitive advantage by making yourself known on the Internet, but first of all, you must be able to identify the opportunities offered by your sector. To do this, there are certain tips that may suit you. First, study the market. Explains Duarte, “There are aspects of the markets that are not perfect although, in advance, they seem so. Study the sector well and analyze what things you can change and how you can improve the services offered. Surely, you will be facing a business opportunity that you should not miss. Take advantage of it.”

Currency dissatisfied customers have to be addressed. One of the biggest opportunities an industry can give you are dissatisfied customers. If you are aware that your market offers products that do not end up responding to the needs of consumers, take advantage of this variant to approach them and offer them one that does meet their expectations. There may be a service or product that already complies with them, but for some reason generates some reluctance in the public. Take advantage of this variable to enter the market.

Creating new market segments is important. There is no fully defined market; advances always arise in all fields, so new channels can emerge to redirect our online business. On the other hand, there are also other aspects to which the business can be directed, whether geographical, demographic or otherwise. Identifying these possibilities will give you an added advantage over your competition.

Using new technologies well will give an eCommerce business a boost. “If you have an online presence,” explains Duarte, “but you have not ventured to create a good marketing strategy, take the opportunity to see how the competition acts and create a social media plan that boosts your market. Of course, always analyze the audience you are addressing and see if it is feasible to strengthen this field.” If you have your online commerce oriented to a specific geographical area, delving into social networks can help you expand your field of action if you wish. On the other hand, if you only have one website, analyze if it is also feasible to have it optimized for mobile, since every day there are more users who buy through these devices and you can generate a greater opportunity to convert to sales than if you refer only to the web.

It’s important to also look at other international markets. Don’t stay only in your online store; search and track on the net the way that international companies in your sector do business. In this way, you can take more ideas to guide your strategy and improve your business opportunities than if you only covered the options offered by your environment.

Another aspect that can help you identify the opportunities of your business within online commerce is the creation of a SWOT. SWOT analysis, as its acronym indicates, is named for the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats that your eCommerce can experience. Weaknesses and strengths belong to the internal agents that can influence your company. Instead, threats and opportunities are the external agents that affect your business, that is, their role with respect to their sector of action.

Strengths, obviously, deals with what makes the business stronger in the market and focuses on achieving solid business opportunities that help the company become stronger within its sector. The idea is to use our differentiation as a competitive advantage over other companies in our market.

Weaknesses include several factors that can enter into this framework, such as delivery waiting times, problems in making payments over the network or order management. Take a good look at where your business is weaker.

Analyzing the sector and seeing how we can improve it will also help us to create opportunities that we must take into account. The use of the information provided by Big Data, SEO positioning or social networks themselves can guide us to know which path to take in this regard and respond to the needs of our consumers.

Although we think that we have achieved an innovative idea, we must take into account the competition. These are the threats. In the online market it is very common that in a short time companies appear that try to monopolize our field of action, so we should not lose sight of them.

After analyzing your entire environment and seeing the opportunities offered by your sector, you have to remember one very important thing. eCommerce is a market in continuous evolution, so you must analyze your field of action frequently so as not to lose the market opportunities that have earned you that advantage over your competition. Only if you keep constantly updated can you become a successful eCommerce business.