It is said people buy from the people they like, not from the ones who just sell, but the flip side of it, people buy from the one who flaunts it well. Today, to transfer big amounts- use internet banking, if you want to read- just get e-books, for education & skills - go to various online free courses and also paid once. Not limited here, if found someone really appealing, you quickly approach them on social handles without waiting for next meeting, if looking for business deals and high paying jobs- you approach strong profiles on LinkedIn and much more with a mere click.
And this click-game is thriving high when every time you like a nice looking jacket, stylish sling bag, dapper looks of your favorite stars, perfect lip shade, that perfect unique color you were looking for, the most awaited smart gadgets, and that everything you can name today is available online. Even, before you make the choice to buy it either offline or online, you slip your fingers on your smartphone screen to scroll a thousand similar brands of the products you like with several price variations and payment options.
Not only millennial or one specific kind of customers, but everyone is hitting online to buy their favorite items in huge numbers that it is also making the retailers and sellers tighten their seat belts against this business idea as every offline shopkeeper these days, think of selling online to be more accessible by customers.
Selling and buying online is booming today, this vertical is addressed as e-commerce. Fortunately, it is benefiting everyone, bringing the interest of many traders and magnets from small business owners to big and even individuals show up on e-commerce sites with their chosen niche of products. Even the key players of the offline market are investing. And transforming the idea of shopping.
If you are the one who is also considering it as a lucrative business but thinking about how to sell products online then it is a perfect time, to begin with. Many established business people, event settled at job individuals, also some fresher are benefiting from online stores even some have decided to do it as part-time, on the other hand some have left their 9-5 conventional work duties to be full fledge available. To start e-commerce first of all you need to decide upon the choice of the products you want to sell, Brands, Industry, Medium of payments, taxes, documents, and the complete guide to begin with, from establishing a website, choosing an existing partner with well-established website, your displays on site like do you want to take models to advertise, going without it or a general but a good product photography.
Since in 1994 when first online sale happened also called a web sale by Kohn who sold a CD of Sting’s Ten Summoner’s Tales album to his friend in Philadelphia it sounded like one of the most amusing ideas but late became popular globally and the rest of the story, we all know. Here are some ready to pick steps and know how to start your e-commerce business.
1. Choosing the products
Before you start your e-commerce if you can spare time thinking about the products you actually want to sell is a wise time investment to avoid future mistakes. Not just that you also need to decide upon the products you want to sell or the services you want to get paid off. You can decide the product selling by two ways like ff you are good at something like handicrafts, mobile covers, DIY, small or big interior pieces, painting, art and second is if you are already trading something, you can choose the same product to sell online to boost your income, in case you are new and first time selling something then decide on the products you carry good knowledge about, in terms of quality, retail resources, profit, and margins etc.
2. Research and viability
once you are done with the choice of products that interests you to trade online spare some time to research upon the viability of the items you want to sell in terms of shipping, transport, places, for instance, you want to sell something that is available in one country or state only then you need to bring the extra cost into consideration before moving. In case if items are too big, too delicate or need to assemble and does it need some other person to assemble there, also if these items are coming with limited manufacturing or life dates like flowers and milk, all of these if pre-planned will let you breathe stress-free.
3. Budget and Platform to begin with
A refined research, wise thought on viability have cleared the air, for you, now the major step to choose the platform is crucial. It may vary on your budget, your knowledge, Risk taking ability, amount of the products, a variety of brands or also depend upon on your own personal choice. In all of the case you can choose either of the two major options available for online selling is establishing a full fledge complete e-commerce website to start selling your products online and have your own online store and another one is to sell at existing e-commerce marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, Etsy or Rakuten etc. which is one of the most tangible options to start quickly.
A) To start with existing e-commerce market
You need to complete the registration process as asked by the platform company, it requires you to submit your documents which can also be scanned and sent and that includes your identity, address proof and some other business related document, verification processes in a couple of days and you are updated about it.
It requires no marketing cost and time, no promotional activities, you do not need to build the clients directly from any part of the globe you want to target. It Saves your website maintenance cost and initial investment to launch the website too. One of the drawbacks is, it takes away the share of 15-20% from your sale but in the less and simple process, you can start your e-commerce business.
b) Own a Website
It also offers two options whether you chose to host your own website or opt to create a website using store creators but it requires patience to get it popular and known, needs marketing and more investment.
Plan for good inventory software
It is difficult to remember all in and outs on tips so it is wise to decide upon an inventory software to manage your stock well.
Eventually, before you start selling online, let's calculate: These are the foundations to start your e-commerce business:
a) Display via Product photography
No matter how loudly it is said not to judge the book by its cover but your product quality is often perceived by its looks, so it is important to invest on good photography preferably by professional photographers like product photographers that makes your product display so captivating and get attracting. This is a show business so what looks better sells better. And you can also add the cost of it but this is worth spending and you can find many agencies with feasible prices.
b) Shipping cost
Need to visit nearest Courier company, add on to the actual cost calculate your margins and negotiate if requires. Crucially examine it state-wise or place-wise, wisely.
c) Payment gateway
In case of your own website, you need to pay for annually or as per the plans to different partners, these days some payment gateways are offering a very low fees. Before choosing a payment gateway, make sure to research everything about them. Some payments getaways only accepts payments locally so if you’re selling globally then consider PayPal, Stripe, Braintree, 2CheckOut or Skrill etc.
d) Packaging cost
Equally vital to consider as this goes with every piece of item you sell and depends upon the size and type of the product. Be sure that you choose the best packaging material that fits your product’s nature to prevent damages from stack weight, water, heat etc.
e)Storage cost: if you do not have a space to store, you may need to invest or you need to forget about the neat and clean home as initially, you can choose this option too.
f) Marketing cost
Vital in case of having your own online store. It is very necessary to market your product over different online and offline channels. If a potential buyer is not able to engage with your brand or product, your sales figures are going nowhere. Even though marketing online cost very little, you need to include this factor in your business plan.
How can you make your product look better and get benefit with some agencies?
As cited before this business works on tempting looks because the customer cannot feel the product by touch but only through eyes so it is important to use good quality pictures and especially for your initial business. If you have got some good pictures but not very technical with photo editing and want to enhance those pictures, with touching, editing, background removal or add-ons like advance makeups, clipping path or color corrections there are many renowned agencies who offer these services specific to your needs and the happiest part is they are available online to ease your comfort and with flexible packs that you can acquire to hone your product looks better.
Online business is less risky with minimum to highest investment and many flexible options for a different range of people to do with current business, job or do it full time, free from brick and mortar, a new era, 24/7 business that is worth giving a try.