10 Steps to Creating an E-Commerce Website Quickly and Inexpensively
If you’re ready to leave the daily routine of a typical nine to five job, going into business for yourself may be exactly what you need to do. Many aspiring entrepreneurs can get started easily by building their own online store. If you don’t have a large budget to start off with, you can still create something great that could potentially see a profit very quickly. Here are 10 steps to get started with an online business.
1. Think of a Specific Concept
Before you do anything, you’ve got to decide what your company concept is going to be. Make a choice about what kind of products you want to sell and what industry you want to be part of. Go with something you feel passionate about or an industry where you have a bit of experience. You should also name your business with a memorable title.
2. Choose a Structure
Next, you must get started on filling out the paperwork to make your business official. Along with this step, you will need to choose a corporate structure. If you plan to be the only person involved in the company, a sole proprietorship may make the most sense. As you grow, you may want to consider incorporating your business.
3. Create a Website
Then, it’s time to create your online presence. If you’re lucky, your business name will be available as a website address. You’ll need to register your new online address and choose a web hosting company. You’ll also need to spend time building your website from scratch. There are plenty of web building tools that make this step easy for beginners.
4. Select a Product Line
The next step is to make decisions about your product line. Some companies focus on offering services instead of a specific product. If you’re not sure what you should sell, try to put yourself into your customer’s shoes. Think about what the public needs, and see if your product meets that need.
5. Partner With a Manufacturer
For companies planning to sell a specific product, they will need to pair up with a manufacturer or supplier. Sometimes, you can get a deep discount on your product line’s first initial order, so be sure to negotiate your rates. Make sure you calculate the potential profit you could make after your expenses to evaluate each manufacturer’s offer.
6. Develop a Marketing Plan
A successful business can’t simply set up shop and wait for the customers to start rolling in. Marketing is an essential piece to making a profit. For an online business, marketing goes beyond typical advertising. Your company can be successful if you focus on search engine strategies that help get your website to show up on the top of the search results lists.
7. Hire Additional Support Staff
While many online businesses can be successfully run by one individual, it’s sometimes necessary to start off with a few employees if your organization is more elaborate. Take your time recruiting essential team members who can help your business start off strong.
8. Design Your E-Commerce Software
One of the most important steps in opening a new online store is designing your e-commerce software. If you don’t have any software development experience, it may seem cost prohibitive to hire a developer for this process. A solution that could work is to choose an offshore software development company like Redwerk. Find out more about what they offer at https://redwerk.com/industries/e-commerce.
9. Stock Your Store
Then it’s time to get started with stocking your store. Some companies may be able to order supplies in bulk if there is adequate storage. Other organizations may find ordering on demand to be better for their particular system.
10. Focus on Customer Service
The final step in getting your store up and running is to develop your customer service strategy. Remember, your customers are your bread and butter, so you’ll need to create sound policies that focus on service and product quality. Make decisions about your return policy and other important aspects of outstanding service. If you ignore this step, you could potentially lose your first customers and never gain any back.
Getting started in e-commerce can be an exciting venture for the new entrepreneur. If you want to be successful in your first online business, follow these steps for best results.