Think back to a time when we used to go into a store, find a product we wanted to purchase, and we went to the sales clerk to purchase. That may not be something from far ago, it is something we do everyday, however with the prevalence of online shopping, e-commerce is a new business form that prospective proprietors are looking to as a cheaper alternative to building a brick-and-mortar shop. However, while making an e-commerce shop is a lot easier than having a physical shop, it does come with its own stresses and responsibilities. Today, we will take a look at the steps toward building your very own e-commerce shop.
Step 1: Create a Concept
The first thing you should do is thinking of a concept for your store. While you may think that being available to sell just about anything will bring in the money. However, you’re not a Wal-Mart, you can’t sell everything when going into the e-commerce business and think that you’ll be remarkable. The stores online that specialize in a sector, like technology or music parts, that will not only bring more customers, but will also bring customers who are more likely to have larger orders when they do shop at your specialty store. When you think of your specialty store, put into mind the ease of getting the products you’re selling. For example, selling gadgets are more expensive and difficult for you to sell than clothes, due to supply.
Step 2: Shop The Idea Around
Can’t think of an idea, or still sitting on the fence about your choice? Your best bet is to go in and look around online yourself to see how your chosen concept is profitable. This will allow you to plan out what you will get in, how much you’ll have to spend, and in the end, a good plan of what you need to do each month in terms of money.
Step 3: Choose Your Platform
When having a store online, you now are presented with many websites to provide your products. The top choices are eBay and Amazon. Both have their own advantages and disadvantages. With eBay, the advantages include that it’s free and relatively easy to set up shop on the website. However, the heavy emphasis on PayPal can throw some people off from the website and bring added restrictions. Amazon is more organized and great for individuals selling books, however the heavy fees and restrictions can turn cause some to go to other stores.
Step 4: Monetize, Monetize, Monetize
So, once your store is set up, how do you make money? On eBay, it’s pretty simple. You post your item and pay any fees that are required from you. From there, after you add information and set the time frame you want the item to be for sale, you can receive bids or instant sales. Once the item is sold, the buyer sends payment and you must send the item before receiving payment through PayPal. On Amazon, after your item is posted, sellers receive their payment through their bank account. This can be a bit easier, and more tangible. If this is something you like, then Amazon is a choice you should consider more than eBay.
Step 5: Create That Competitive Edge
Finally, we will look at how you can get the sales that others on Amazon or eBay are loosing. The way to do this is to have an edge over the other stores. You can have your post feature multimedia. This means, have high quality, non-distractible, photos that show every detail of what you are selling. You may also want to look into adding video to the post. This is better than photos because it allows you to better explain the item. Once the item is sold, being available by your email for answering questions will provide customer service that keeps buyers coming back. Social networking can also be a great customer service tool, allowing you to answer questions.