5 Steps To Starting An Online Store

One of the best ways to make money in keeping with the global growth of e-commerce and the ease of implementation is to sell products and services online.

An online store is a simple, cheap and profitable option to generate a monthly income.

5 Steps To Starting An Online Store

There are many advantages of e-commerce over a physical store or an office job:

  • There’s no rent to pay. Though there are some costs these are small enough to afford.
  • You can reach millions of customers from the comfort of your home. Social media sites and google search have made this possible.
  • Your store is open all the time. Your customers can buy from you as soon as they decide to regardless of your location or time zone.
  • You don’t have to be physically present to make money. You can sleep happily knowing your store makes money without you.
  • Every feature you need in your store is already available. There are ready made e-commerce solutions like Shopify that give you the freedom of features and design.

You can create and launch your website without any prior web design or coding knowledge.

  • You work on your schedule and from anywhere you wish
  • If you already have a physical store, then having an online store can set you apart from your competitors in a big way.
  • You can sell your products to busy people and to people that would otherwise not come to the physical store.
  • You can create a freebie report and collect contact details of potential customers. You can funnel them into an auto-responder email series and get them into buying mood.
  • An online store needs less staff in comparison to its physical counterpart. You can instead focus on your supply chain to gain more profits.

I could go on and on about the benefits, but you get the point. The best part is that it is a lot easier to start an online store now than ever.

With a few clicks you can have it completed.

How to Start A Business: Be Inspired & Informed. Real Stories, Information and Advice from online entrepreneurs.

Here Are 5 Steps to Start an Online Store Today:

1. Decide Your Business Plan

The first step is to decide your business plan. There are several online store business options available.

  • Traditional Way (Branded Products): You purchase products at wholesale price and fulfill the orders yourself.
  • Drop-Shipping: Customer orders from you, you pass the order details to the distributor. You don’t have to handle products or shipping and you obtain a passive income.
  • You Own Products: Create your own products from scratch and sell them. You obtain a manufacturer and you are the retail seller. It’s more responsibility but with greater returns. Alternatively, you can improve a product that’s already selling on Amazon or Ebay, have it branded and sold as your own.
  • White Labeling: If you don’t want to create your own products, you may buy products with white label license. These products allow you to sell them with your brand name.
  • Affiliate Marketing: This is similar to drop-shipping since you carry no responsibility. All you do is refer your potential customers to the website of the vendor’s product. Totally passive income.

Choose a business plan that fits your goals.

You will want to decide if you’ll sell only on your Personal Online Store, or on Amazon, Facebook and Pinterest also. Selling on Amazon provides available monthly traffic in the millions but has its setbacks due to their regulations.

The most recommended option is to use Amazon, Facebook and Pinterest to build and establish Your Personal Online Store in the long-term.  You gain exposure and high traffic volume. This way you reap the benefits while growing your business.

2. Decide What You Want to Sell

You next need to figure out what you want to sell. This takes research to ensure there’s a market. A great starting point is to determine what’s selling on Amazon. This can be done using Jungle Scout or manually get the information using Amazon Bestsellers.

Additionally, you want to do research and reading on how to find a product to sell online or Get Product Ideas

This process is simplified by Shopify apps which provide products
& customization options so you do not have to source products, and can set-up your store and start selling in 1 day to a global market;

Oberlo DropShipping

Pillow Profits

Modalyst

Printify

Printful

teelaunch

Qstomizer

Gooten

Art of Where

Shopify - Printify

e.g  Printify provides customizations for 100+ unique printable products (T-shirts, phone cases, mugs, canvas…).

Delivery is provided directly to your customer. Pay only after selling for product printing fulfillment and shipping – the technology is for free. No need for inventory or storage space. Simply print on demand with Printify.

How To Start A T-Shirt Business

3. Choose You Brand Name, Domain Name and Hosting

Once you know your business plan and products create your brand name. When deciding the business name, you want to leave some room for expansion. Don’t know what I mean?

For example: If you are starting with fashion clothing for women, don’t choose “Women’s Choice”, choose “Absolute Choice” or “Absolute Fashion”. We are doing it so that later on you can expand and include men’s fashion and kid’s fashion as well without creating a new brand.

We want to plan the expansion from the start. Otherwise, it feels uncomfortable when your brand is “Women’s Choice” but you want to expand to men’s fashion clothing.

In the internet world, the name of your business is your business address (Absolute Fashion = absolutefashion.com). Choose a .com name, a name that is easy to remember and easy to spell for your customers.

Sometimes creativity just hits the bottom and you can’t find a good business name. Don’t worry, there are many “Business Name Generator” tools available online.

Shopify offers one such great tool here.

You can use Name Check to ensure both the domain name is available and corresponding social media names.

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Once you have a business name ready, register the domain name and hosting. You can either do this independently or utilize an e-commerce platform which will provide all the facilities required for hosting, launching and operating an online store.

N.B If you reside in a country/region without Postal Codes, registering a domain with Shopify will require the domain to be registered externally (third-party domain) then connected to Shopify.
This process is straight-forward and a guide is offered by Shopify.

For the registering of an external domain, Bluehost is the best in the business. They provide fast and reliable servers. A fast website helps in SEO and creates a great user experience.

Assistance for the connecting of your Bluehost domain with Shopify can also be obtained from Bluehost’s chat support.

Let’s create a website!

Shopify- 14 days free trial

4. Create Your Site With the Right E-Commerce Solution

Here is the most important step. There are several e-commerce solutions available and choosing one among them is the hardest part. Let me make it simple!

First of all, you need a solution that is easy to setup, it should not require any coding skills and it should be easily customized. The management of the store should be systematic so that you can track everything and optimize your business.

You need a beautiful design that compliments your store’s USP (Unique Selling Point) and creates a great customer experience. If you want to sell your products on Amazon as well, you should have a solution that integrates with Amazon easily.

Designed by Freepik

You will need to market your products online, so easy integration with social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, etc is necessary. The available markets here are global and in the millions.

Next is payment processing. Since you have an international market at your disposal, you need to take advantage of it. You need an international payment processor that accepts all forms of payments.

Security of your online store and payments is also important. You also want to give your customers better deals on Holiday and festival seasons with coupon codes.

That brings us to recommend the all in one e-commerce platform for creating, launching and growing your online store. With Shopify you get all these features, information and support for your online store.

Shopify provides a single Dashboard to manage all your business – that is your website, sales channels, products, orders, customers and reports.

Watch Webinar – Setup Your Online Store

5. Have a Marketing Strategy

At this point you have your business up and running, all you need are customers. Depending on your products you may want to do;

☑ Guest Posting- such as with Street ArticlesEzine Articles or with other established sites in your niche which allow guest writers

☑ Advertising – this can be in the form of social media or google, bing, yahoo etc.

Social Media Marketing

☑ Email Marketing

☑ Blogging

☑ SEO (Search Engine Optimization

Shopify Social Media Apps - The Bread & Butter Hub

The good news is that if you have chosen Shopify, integration with their marketing and social media apps is readily available. Additionally, there are dozens of articles by other business owners providing techniques on enhancing marketing strategies.

N.B Even with different marketing channels you can manage and track your business on Shopify’s Dashboard.

Parting Thoughts…

These steps will ensure you are on the path to your business’ success and that you will be able to achieve financial freedom. There is no great science to opening an online store, it is just about knowing and having the right steps and tools.

An online store has very few geographical limits, needs less inventory, and has few employee challenges. There are no limits on your ability to sell.

You can sell in huge volumes and reach an international market.

Another great thing is that e-commerce is on the boom presently with physical stores on the decline.

Increasingly, people shop from the comfort of their homes. For consumers, it is cheaper and more convenient. For business owners, it is cheaper and easier to implement and therefore more profitable.

Just follow these simple 5 steps and start making money from your brand new online store. Starting a business and generating a monthly income has never been easier.

Have A Great Start!

Be Informed. Be Inspired. Be Motivated.

5 Steps To Starting An Online Store
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