Let’s keep it real:
Growing an ecommerce store can be difficult. You need to consistently compete to attract customers to your website and win sales.
There are so many business decisions that you need to make, from product selection to logistics to marketing.
That’s why it’s so important to study every facet of running an ecommerce business. It will allow you to stay on top of your game at all times.
One of the best ways to learn more about the ecommerce industry is to join an ecommerce community.
Want to take your ecommerce career to the next level? Keep reading.
What Are Ecommerce Communities and Why Do They Matter?
Ecommerce communities are specialized online communities dedicated to ecommerce businesses.
These communities are meant to be a gathering place for ecommerce professionals where they can meet, share what they have learned, and get advice.
Some of these communities exist as standalone online forums, some of them as subforums of large online discussion platforms, and some as user groups on social media networks.
Some of them are free for everyone to join, some are exclusive to paying members.
But whatever the particular setup is, the aim of all these ecommerce communities remains the same: helping ecommerce professionals connect and learn from each other.
By the way, if you're just starting your online store, check out our ecommerce launch checklist to make sure you cover all your bases.
Why Should You Join an Online Ecommerce Community?
Joining an ecommerce community can help you grow your ecommerce knowledge and make your sales soar.
1) Peer Effect & Feedback
Ecommerce communities are full of ambitious, hard-working, motivated ecommerce professionals who are passionate about selling online.
Hanging out with fellow online merchants will fuel your ambition, inspire you to work harder, gather ideas that will gain more sales and keep you motivated day in and day out. Especially if you can find a community dedicated to your specific ecommerce niche.
In fact, studies have shown that when performance feedback is received, it has both a cognitive and a positive motivational impact on individuals.
2) Mutual Help
Mistakes are unavoidable.
But they are also expensive.
And they can seriously set back the growth of your ecommerce store if you make the wrong decision and implement an incorrect strategy.
That’s why it makes sense to ask for advice when you have to make an important business decision.
When you are a member of an online ecommerce community, you can post a question and get various perspectives. This can help you see the situation in a new way.
Moreover, these communities are often frequented by seasoned ecommerce professionals, which means that you can get advice from people who have achieved more than you.
3) Build Relationships
You have probably heard the saying:
“It’s not about what you know, it’s about who you know.”
And while it may be an exaggeration since your actual skills are definitely important, there’s no doubt that there’s a lot of truth in that phrase.
Relationships with the right people can lead to:
- New business ideas
- Lucrative collaborations and partnerships
- Mentorships that accelerate your progress
But you can’t just go about your daily life expecting to somehow bump into the right people by accident. You need to get out there and proactively build your network.
And what could be a better place to start than an ecommerce community that’s full of ecommerce professionals just like you?
To grow your ecommerce store, you need to go above and beyond your customer’s expectations. That’s how you will stand out from everyone else.
But this can be easier said than done. You want to show initiative, you want to prove how excellent your products are, you want to add value… But the competition can be fierce, especially since there are currently 7.9 million online retailers in the world and 2.1 million of them are in the United States.
That’s where joining an ecommerce community can help as well. You can keep yourself accountable by announcing your extra-curricular project and then posting progress updates. You can even get an accountability buddy with whom you can check in with.
Social pressure is an extremely powerful thing. No one wants their store to fail. So make yourself accountable and start getting things done.
The Best Ecommerce Communities
Okay, so now that you understand how joining an online ecommerce community can help you gain ecommerce knowledge and perform better, let’s take a closer look at some of the best ecommerce communities out there.
The Shopify Plus Community is an official Shopify Facebook group. It currently has 7.1k members. It is a closed group and you can only become a member if you are a Shopify Plus Merchant.
It’s a great place to access and network with other growth-minded business leaders who have already scaled their ecommerce store.
You will be able to discuss experiences and strategies with high-volume merchants that will help you not only survive in the commerce world, but thrive.
Members are also known to provide recommendations of the tools they use that help them achieve sucess, like push notification apps and multi-channel helpdesks. This will help you avoid the trial and error phase that inevitably comes along with trying new software that you need for your ecommerce store.
This is a private Facebook group that was created by ecommerce entrepreneurs Steve and Evan Tan who have built several million dollar stores.
This is a large and active ecommerce community that has 107k+ members at the time of writing.
It’s a great place to discuss any ecommerce topics, like Shopify/Magento tips, Facebook ads, social media marketing, and conversions. But it’s especially useful if you need advice on international ecommerce as there are a lot of members from outside the U.S.
Shopify Ecommerce Group is an unofficial Shopify public Facebook group for ecommerce professionals who use Shopify. It has 29k+ members at the time of writing.
You can get help on various topics related to the Shopify platform, from using the core software to various helpful apps to conversion optimization tips.
You don’t need to join the group to browse the posts, so you can check them out and see if you find them useful before you commit to joining the community.
Ecom Empires is a private Facebook group created by Nick Peroni for ecommerce professionals. It has 97k+ members at the time of writing.
Here you can find discussions on a wide variety of ecommerce topics, from software to logistics to marketing. Whatever your question is, the chances are that someone on the Ecom Empires group has an answer.
Shopify Entrepreneurs is another unofficial private Facebook group that caters to ecommerce professionals who use Shopify. It has 106k+ members at the moment of writing.
It is full of a diverse group of people, from Shopify store managers, store owners and expert service providers that include marketers, designers and developers.
This makes it a great place to get feedback on Shopify stores, but keep in mind that the moderators need to approve each post manually. Not all posts get approved.
Although this may seem like an unnecessary hurdle when you want to ask a question, it also means that the content quality remains high.
The Ecommerce Marketing Community is designed to connect ecommerce founders who are growing their brands from $0 to $1 million in sales. They bring in ecommerce experts every month for a monthly AMA, along with having daily posts sharing what founders are learning. With over 1,200 members, the community is growing every day and the perfect place to share e-commerce marketing tips you're using to grow your brand.
WooCommerce Community is the official WooCommerce ecommerce platform Facebook group. It has 40k+ members at the time of writing. It was created to help online merchants with features and functionality of their WooCommerce store.
It’s one of the best places online to get answers to questions related to WooCommerce software. It also provides an opportunity for WP developers and WooCommerce euthanists to connect and discuss ideas.
Cener Ecommerce Mastermind is a private Facebook group for ecommerce professionals that has 52k+ members at the time of writing.
It was founded by a successful ecommerce entrepreneur Justin Cener who has built and sold a 7-figure ecommerce business. It was originally a closed Facebook group made specifically for Justin’s clients.
It’s a great place for online merchants who want to gain ecommerce knowledge as he still hangs around and answers as many questions as he can.
Ecommerce Entrepreneurs is a private Facebook group that is affiliated with the popular website A Better Lemonade Stand.
It’s an active community that has strict rules and is heavily moderated.
They only accept users that:
- Have been active on Facebook for over a year
- Have valid profile photos
- Belong to less than 50 Facebook groups
You will need a password to access the group, which you will get immediately after reading and agreeing to the group rules.
Ecommerce Fuel Forum is an exclusive online community for 7-figure ecommerce business owners.
This is probably the best place for successful ecommerce entrepreneurs to network with other successful ecommerce entrepreneurs.
You will need to apply and pass the vetting process to join this community, but it’s worth the hassle.
Does search engine optimization (SEO) feature heavily in your company’s marketing strategy?
Then you may want to check out SEO Chat, an online forum dedicated to the topic of getting organic search traffic from Google.
Being a member of an SEO community can help you stay up to date on the latest SEO strategies and tactics. This is important given the fast-paced, ever-changing landscape of search engine optimization.
Digital Point is a massive online forum that has subforums for pretty much everything related to developing stores, from SEO to pay-per-click advertising to copywriting. It even has subforums for web development and web design!
You may want to check out the ecommerce subforum. At the time of writing, the last message on it is almost a week old, so it’s not particularly active. Still, you can post your question there and see if you get replies.
Plus, it may be worth your while to browse the archives, since some popular threads have received 1,000+ replies. You may find valuable business insights buried in those discussions!
BigCommerce is a sophisticated ecommerce platform that provides all the functionality needed for running a medium to large ecommerce business.
They have an official online forum where anyone can ask questions related to ecommerce in general and BigCommerce software in particular. You will find that the forum is split into various different groups.
You are probably familiar with Reddit, which is one of the largest online discussion websites in the world.
On it, you can discuss pretty much anything, from cute pet videos to business to politics.
At the moment of writing, the Ecommerce subreddit has over 140k subscribers. You can post your own threads as well as participate in other members’ threads.
It’s a public forum, so the discussion quality can be hit and miss, but if you keep an eye on this subreddit you will almost certainly stumble across some gems (detailed case studies that companies share are especially valuable).
Reddit allows you to sort posts by popularity over a certain time period, which is a handy feature if you want to quickly check the most upvoted posts of the day, week, month, or year (or even of all time).
Shopify, one of the most popular ecommerce platforms out there, has its own official forum called Shopify Community.
You can ask questions on a variety of ecommerce topics, from the technical stuff to store design to marketing to payments to selling internationally.
There is even a subforum focused on the social impact of ecommerce where people can discuss how to grow sustainable and socially conscious brands.
Plus, there’s also a subforum specifically dedicated to feedback requests, so if you want feedback on a Shopify store, that’s the place to go to.
Shopify Community is an active online forum. At the time of writing, the latest messages in quite a few subforums were posted less than half an hour ago, in some cases as little as 3 minutes ago.
So if you want to get answers to your Shopify questions, you should definitely check out this ecommerce community.
Gorgias Community is an official group created and managed by the team at Gorgias. It is a closed group that only existing Gorgias customers can join.
The group is a place where customer support teams can collaborate and share ideas on training, strategy, tactics and more. Being an active member of this Facebook group will help you take your ecommerce store’s customer support to the next level.
Since it and covers all types of customer support topics, it is a great place where you can share your successes and help others in the ecommerce community solve their problems too.
Ecommerce communities are places where you can find inspiration, learn the latest tactics, and network with other ecommerce professionals.
They are an ideal place where online merchants will find invaluable information that will help them take their ecommerce store to the next level.
We recommend that you not only join ecommerce communities, but be active in them. You won’t regret it.