How to Start an Ecommerce Business: 7 Steps to Follow

Entering the ecommerce world can be as easy and quick as anything. The internet is accessible to anyone, so what you need is just some determination. If you have an idea of what you want to do, then you need to follow a few simple steps and get the business going. Here is a small guide on how to start an ecommerce business. With their help, everything should be fully operational in a short period of time.

Two hands getting out of two laptops, holding a card and a bag

What is ecommerce?

Ecommerce represents any kind of transaction that takes place on the internet. Most people might think about buying and selling online, but ecommerce is actually an umbrella term for more types of activities. Apart from online shopping, any kind of electronic payment is also ecommerce. It also includes regular internet banking activities, ticket reservations, or online auctions. Therefore, not only physical goods are involved.

Ecommerce comes with plenty of benefits. First of all, it is quick, as you can make a payment from one part of the world to another in a matter of seconds. Also, you get rid of all the distance and time limitations which came by using the postal service, or even a bank. In the end, you might end up paying less in an online transaction.

Types of ecommerce

Ecommerce is a rather broad term, and there are some specialized types of this business. Mcommerce represents all transactions that one can do by using a mobile phone. Fcommerce is a term which describes all the businesses going on on Facebook. However, people have come to use the general term of ecommerce for online shopping in general.

How to start an ecommerce business

1.      Find a product with high demand on the market

The first step for any commercial activity is to find something to sell. For your business to be profitable, you have to find something that people like to buy. This way, your business has more chances to grow rapidly. Also, this product needs to be something that you can easily supply and store.

In other words, the key to success is to find the current trend. The best places to research the market are eBay Top Products, Amazon Best Sellers, or Google Trends. However, don’t pick anything that is profitable at the moment. You should also enjoy the product, as dealing with it will occupy a big part of your time.

Buying something while using a mobile ecommerce app

2.      Find a trustworthy manufacturer

Let’s say you have a lot of success and receive a huge amount of orders for a certain product. However, this cannot go well if the manufacturer cannot supply you with the necessary number of products. This can mean the demise of your ecommerce business, so you have to be extremely careful.

Whenever you contact a manufacturer, make sure he can deal with your orders. Ask specific questions before striking a deal, and see how he reacts under pressure. If you can get some recommendations from other companies, it would be perfect.

3.      Choose an appealing brand name

Before starting the business, you need a name. Most importantly, this name shouldn’t be already taken or trademarked. Then, it should be clever and convincing. Customers are more likely to trust a brand that sounds empowering and creative.

The next step is to prepare for the online environment. This means you have to secure a domain. Although it might cost a little more, it’s better to opt for a dot-com. Also, don’t forget to prepare pages on all major social media platforms.

4.      Create the website

The most important thing for an ecommerce business is its website. After purchasing the domain, the next step is the development. You will need a logo, which should also be appealing and creative. If you don’t have the skills to make it yourself, you can hire a designer to turn your ideas into reality.

However, if you don’t have too much money to spare, there are other solutions as well. There are plenty of specialized platforms where you get all the help you need to build a website.

5.      Deal with the shipping details

Once you have a website, it means your ecommerce business is closer to being ready. However, before that, you still have to manage the shipping problem. People who purchase products online do it to avoid getting out of the house and going to a shop. Therefore, you have to find the best way for you to deliver the products.

The easiest option would be for you to work as a third-party collaborator between the buyer and the manufacturer. This means you send the order to the manufacturer, and he has to deal with shipping. However, to avoid negative reviews in case something goes wrong, you should take care of the delivery. Sending orders via post allows you to send them with priority. Also, you can purchase a service which lets you track the orders.

Holding a card in front of a laptop

6.      Be careful with the financing

Before launching into the ecommerce business, take a look at numbers. Try to make some estimates on your future costs, involving both website design, manufacturing costs, shipping costs, and everything you might need.

Make sure you don’t spend money on unnecessary things, so you won’t start with a loss. Also, judging from the expenses, you can set a goal for the profit you want to make.

7.      Set up your marketing strategies

The last step in developing an ecommerce business is to find out how to promote it. To begin selling, you have to make your business visible to potential customers. One of the easiest ways to do it is to create ads on social media platforms. As your business progresses, you can start implementing other marketing campaigns as well. However, you first need to acquire your first sales.

Shopping cart on a computer screen

Conclusion

By learning how to start an ecommerce business, you can prepare your strategy and launch your online shop in no time. You don’t need sophisticated strategies or endless resources to succeed in this business. All you have to do is pay attention to the market, listen to the needs of the customers, and make sure you offer them quality services.

Image sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

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