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How To Get Your First Ecommerce Sales: Carl Payne’s Journey

By Yaroslav Nevsky

Carl Success story how to make ecommerce sales article cover

Securing your initial ecommerce sales can be a formidable task for every newbie in the online business world. Even though a universally applicable answer doesn’t exist, insights from seasoned ecommerce entrepreneurs can offer invaluable guidance. Today, we’ll take this approach as we chat with our guest!

Greetings, could you kindly introduce yourself?

Hello, I’m Carl Payne, a 37-year-old from the United States, currently living between the Philippines and Thailand. My early professional life was primarily devoted to military service, spanning close to a decade.

Post-military, I earned degrees from The Art Institute of Atlanta and Sae Institute of Atlanta, where I specialized in Audio Engineering and Visual Effects with animation. Presently, I own a digital marketing agency called Monami Team LLC, which empowers individuals to launch and scale their online businesses.

Film is my major pastime. Together with my wife, we create short films, replacing actors in popular TV shows with ourselves — purely for the joy of it.

carl and Payne and wife first sales in ecommerce

Intriguingly, this affinity for visual effects sparked my initial journey into ecommerce. Our first store, launched back in 2014, aimed to fund my son’s short films. The venture proved fruitful, providing us with the resources to purchase a camera, computer, and software for visual effects.

Could you elaborate on how this ecommerce journey started?

My ecommerce journey began about eight years ago with WordPress. As mentioned earlier, I first assisted my son in starting his own business when he was 12. This led to helping friends, family, and online schools establish their businesses.

Over several years, I devoted countless hours to aiding others. Eventually, my wife suggested that I leverage my skills to build something of my own. It was an idea that I found rather enticing.

Carl's family picture

Indeed, website development is a thrill for me. I relish the challenge, especially when something goes awry, and I’m tasked with finding a solution.

Can you share more about your online stores?

At present, I run four stores, each tailored to a specific niche.

For instance, one of my stores is a pet supply outlet catering to dog owners, featuring around 118 products from the Sellvia catalog.

In addition, I have a project on the horizon — a vegan-centric store set to debut next month. This store will offer health and wellness items from Sellvia, such as essential oils, yoga mats, and bath salts — products exuding a tranquil, Zen-like vibe.

What led you to choose AliDropship’s Sellvia solution?

My search for a US-based supplier led me to AliDropship’s Sellvia offer.

The prolonged shipping times from other providers prompted me to give Sellvia a shot. After all, customers detest waiting, and extended shipping times often result in canceled orders and low conversion rates.

“The pet supplies store is super new, but I had my first sale within 12 hours of doing my first test – and so, the Sellvia products do sell!”

Impressive! What steps did you implement to start making ecommerce sales?

Establishing a store is a swift process, usually taking about 1-2 days. However, setting it up correctly demands time. I take great care in compressing each product image, renaming image files to match the actual product names, and altering product descriptions to distinguish them from others on search engines. Furthermore, I strive to optimize my site until it attains an A+ rating on Gtmetrix.

“I spend a lot of time on design, especially on my shop, cart, and checkout pages.”

I aim to provide a fresh and unique experience to my website visitors, deviating from the typical sites they often encounter.

Once all of this is accomplished, which typically takes around 21 days, managing a store consumes about 2 hours per day. During this time, I review orders, evaluate ad performance, check emails, and update Sellvia products.

What promotional strategies do you utilize to drive these ecommerce sales?

Facebook and Instagram ads have proven effective for boosting web traffic for my pet products store. I target these ads at women aged 55+ celebrating their birthdays in the current month.

Although I’ve tested TikTok and Google Ads for conversions, they were relatively pricey. While Google Ads did generate conversions, the profit margin was thin due to the high ad costs.

At the moment, I’m not running ads as I’m still updating product descriptions, finalizing SEO work, and creating social media accounts to drive organic traffic to the store.

“However, I am overly positive that within 24 hours of running ads the store will generate conversions (sales) even in its current state.”

By investing additional time in setup, I hope to reduce the need for substantial ad expenditure.

How has ecommerce impacted your life?

Ecommerce has brought an abundance of opportunities my way!

more opportunities with ecommerce sales

I’ve landed significant contracts for web development and store creation, which have immensely benefited me and my family. I live a nomadic lifestyle; my wife, daughter, and I travel the world, living primarily in Airbnbs. My laptop serves as my mobile office!

Isn’t that fascinating? Thanks to Carl’s comprehensive and targeted efforts, he’s been able to trigger ecommerce sales swiftly, even with entirely new stores. Aren’t you tempted to adopt his strategy and see where it could lead you in the realm of ecommerce sales?

By Yaroslav Nevsky
Yaroslav is a founder of AliDropship Community helping people worldwide to start and run a successful dropshipping business.
Carla 11 months ago

Great inspiring article and story. I started with AliDropship & Sellvia but am stuck and have some anxiety. I need hsnd – holding/ help to push past, push through this block. I would to have someone like Carl to guide me. His story resonates. Continued Good success to you, Carl.

Cheng 10 months ago

Want to start my online store

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