The internet is an extremely powerful tool that revolutionized many aspects of our lives, including the way we do business. Every year, online retail sales increase as more and more consumers purchase from the comfort of their home. Nowadays, all it takes is a computer or mobile device with a stable internet connection to avail a product or service.
You might initially think that starting an e-commerce website is only for large companies with huge capital. However, it is actually not as hard as you think. In this article, we will discuss the necessary steps on how to start your e-commerce website. To explain things further, I’ve placed the photos of our recently-finished project with glove-story.com.
Choose a Niche or Industry
The first step in establishing your own e-commerce business is choosing an industry or niche. For some entrepreneurs, this is the most difficult step in the entire process. It is important to note that the niche you choose or the products you decide to sell will have a significant effect on whether your project will be a successful one.
With millions or even billions of different goods that can be made available on your e-commerce website, how do you decide which of these to sell?
Some of the factors that you need to take into consideration include:
Price of the product
If the price of the goods you sell is too low, you may find it difficult to achieve a positive return on investment (ROI). On the other hand, if the products that you want to sell are high-end or the price is too high, you may need to invest time and money in additional customer service. Of course, before purchasing something that costs a lot, your clients will most likely want to talk to a representative of your company over the phone or at least through live chat.
Hence, it is important to strike just the right balance. Generally, consumers are comfortable placing online orders that costs USD 50 to USD 200 for starters.
Basically, margin refers to your cut on each product sale and varies depending on the industry. For instance, electronic products have a thinner margin compared to phone accessories. Contact a manufacturer or supplier to know the margins before deciding on products to sell.
Availability of the Product
Goods which are difficult to purchase locally can lead to greater sales. The logic here is simple—if a product can’t be purchased in local stores, consumers have no other choice but to look for it on e-commerce websites and place an order online.
If you are passionate about the industry or niche, you will be more motivated to do everything to make your e-commerce website a success. When choosing products, consider your hobbies and the things that you love.
Find a Manufacturer
Once you have decided on the products to sell, it’s time to find a manufacturer. Looking for suppliers in online directories is one of the most widely implemented methods because it can save you time. Furthermore, you can also use Google Shopping—a search engine for physical products sold over the internet. Through Google Shopping, you will be able to find both suppliers and re-sellers.
Create a list of suppliers and reach out to them. Choose the one which offers the best deal, and who is willing to work with someone who is just starting out.
Setting up the e-commerce website
The next step that you need to take to finally have your e-commerce business running is to set up the website. Here are the things that you need to consider:
E-Commerce Website Platform
The e-commerce platform or e-commerce cart is what will make your website functional for this kind of business, as this will manage the goods that you will sell, the various categories, and the checkout.
Some of the most popular e-commerce platforms include:
This platform handles the hosting, processing of customers’ credit card, and even security. Although Shopify somewhat limits webmasters in terms of modifying the functionality and appearance of the website, there are available applications and templates that you can add.
This user-friendly platform has numerous features and allows webmasters to change the way the site functions and the way it looks. Furthermore, there are also a lot of extensions that you can integrate into your website for easy customization. However, the downside is that you need to set up the hosting and security manually.
Hosting, Domain Name, SSL Certificate
If you’re not using a hosted platform, you need a domain name and hosting for your e-commerce website. The domain name is important for the branding of your business, while the SSL or secure sockets layer certificate is used for the encryption of sensitive information including your personal information and credit card details.
There are countless web hosting companies out there which can take care of all these three. Choose the one that does not only offers a great quality of service but also have exceptional customer support. In addition, it would be wiser to choose a service that can allow you to install your preferred e-commerce platform easily.
Web Design and Marketing
Your e-commerce website’s design, branding, and marketing can greatly affect your business. A poorly designed website can drive away visitors and hurt your business, while a professional-looking website that is easy to use can attract more customers.
Because you operate your business online, you need to establish a solid online presence through effective branding and digital marketing strategies. No matter how good your website looks or how awesome your products are, your efforts would be useless if customers cannot find you. To learn some digital marketing techniques that really work, you may want to read this article. In addition, our previous article on here’s why your business needs a website, may also help you gain additional insights on how to outperform your competitors.
Anyone can have their own e-commerce website by doing the simple steps provided in this article. However, more than simply following this procedure, you also need to possess the willingness to learn, patience, and dedication.
Without these things, chances are high that you will not be successful in the business even though you already have your e-commerce website. If you want to make things a lot easier for you, it is a great idea to hire a team of professionals who don’t only have the ability to build an e-commerce website for you but can also establish your online presence and market your business.
By working with Infinit3solutions, you will gain access to its team of professional web developers and designers, digital marketers, and SEO specialists who can help you earn hundreds or even thousands every month through your e-commerce business. The advantage of hiring professionals who will be on your side and always ready to assist you, instead of going solo is that you will gain a competitive edge over your competitors.