E-commerce is an attractive field of business for many reasons: you do not need any special training or a big budget to join the game. However, the newcomers are often guilty of making basic mistakes, which eventually prevent them from succeeding. To start an online store and one day develop it into a successful business, you first of all need a good plan. Here are the most important things to include in your planning:
The two most important questions, which you need to ask yourself before you set up an online store, are: what kind of products you want to sell? And is there a demand for these kinds of products? These questions should not be answered in theory, but through practical experience: set up an eBay account to check whether your products are popular among customers. If this experience brings positive results, consider the following: how much money can you spend on your online business? You will need to spend at least $50 a month to run an online store, but the number can easily grow to $500 and more, depending on the scope of your business and services required to run the store. How much time do you plan to spend on your online business? If you want to quit your job and focus only on your store, you need to be sure that you can support yourself for at least a few months, before your online store becomes popular.
We encourage all online entrepreneurs to start from the most basic e-commerce solutions, such as Shopify or BigCommerce. These services have a few advantages for beginners: first of all, they are inexpensive. Furthermore, they require no programming skills – you can design your online store and add products to your catalog in just a few clicks. Last, but not least, they are securely hosted – no need to concern yourself with advanced security means and hosting matters. At this stage of the process your online store can be just a side project of yours and you do not need to quit your job to run it. Limit your product catalog to the most unique and popular items in your offer, instead of trying to sell everything to everyone and end up selling nothing.
And grow big…
When your online start bringing the expected revenues and you are able to attract both new and returning customers, it is time to think about the next stage. There is a limit to how far you can go relying on the word of mouth as your only marketing strategy. The best way to ensure that your online store is visible to new customers is to try search engine optimization. Find an online marketing company, which offers such services. The more you sell through your online store, the more limited you will feel, if you stick to the hosted shopping cart. We strongly recommend all medium size and big online retailers to try Magento Community or even better – to find a Magento website development company and order professional shopping cart solutions with unlimited options for growing your business.
Marta Gromadzka is a writer and editor with a wide variety of experience, including writing for websites internationally and editing books on many different subjects and in a variety of formats. Magecom Twitter
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