Buying and selling a variety of products or services through the internet has never been more popular. And it is no wonder everyone wants to learn more about this phenomenon. These purchases and transactions are safe, comfortable, and time-saving. So, if you’re one of those who want to know how to start an eCommerce business, this might be the right time and place.
Why do people find electronic commerce this appealing in the first place? The web is an endless space packed with infinite opportunities. And this particular field is just a promising area worth looking into. Brick and mortar stores unquestionably have their perks. However, trading and offering stuff and services for sale on the web is the simplest and most efficient way – for both parties. Let’s see how it’s done.
What Are the 3 Types of Ecommerce?
Jump starting a business isn’t possible without learning about some basic terms, facts, and requirements. Although successful eCommerce business examples can be found all over the world wide web, there are still some key terminological questions that often require a once over. Even though people speak about the three primary types of online stores and businesses, there are, in fact, six types of eCommerce business models:
- Business to business (B2B)
- Business to consumer (B2C)
- Consumer to consumer (C2C)
- Consumer to business (C2B)
- Business-to-Administration (B2A)
- Consumer-to-Administration (C2A)
However, most people are interested in learning about the most widespread models: B2B, B2C, and C2C – and in that precise order. And if you need statistics to showcase how huge B2B currently is, the increase in value of transactions through these websites shifted to $9.92 trillion in 2020, which is over 9% more than in 2019.
Still, you can’t choose the right eCommerce business model based on these figures alone. The revenue depends on many factors. And in addition, your budget will have a say in it. Diving into the B2B world will require some capital to invest right from the start. Explore each option carefully before taking a pick.
How Do I Start an Ecommerce Business?
If you want to start a successful eCommerce business, you will need to follow certain steps and rules. Building, launching, and sustaining an online store can be simple if you do it correctly.
- Start by choosing a product or service you will sell. Then, evaluate the idea, and find the most reliable (and affordable) way to get the goods you plan to distribute.
- Do a thorough background search on your competition and get to know the market trends, prices, offers, issues, and space to improve.
- Write a business plan by encompassing all your ideas and connecting the dots.
- Select a name and think about a logo. Make sure that both match your personal tone, style, and your target audience. Research their preferences to nail this step!
- Optimize your page and learn how SEO works to attract customers. Use keywords wisely, and be transparent from the start.
- Be careful with product descriptions – make them specific yet captivating.
- Use clear and high-resolution photos to showcase the goods (from various angles).
- Choose a sales channel like eBay or Shopify.
- Define your KPIs before you launch,
- Acquire your customers and advertise your store.
This is a basic guide on how to start an eCommerce business step by step. Take your time and plan each step meticulously. Explore the market and research your options. Find the tools, means, and platforms that match your necessities, lead to fulfilling your aims, and save you money.
Is Ecommerce Profitable?
This sort of business is unquestionably profitable. Nowadays, most prefer to buy and sell stuff online. And by engaging in it, you can succeed quite swiftly if you play your cards just right.
How much can you make from eCommerce? Since the whole industry has seen a year-on-year increase of 7% for the last 10 years, the whole market has finally reached $4 billion in revenue. What’s more, small retailers have obtained a 30% growth over the past year.
And dropshipping turned out to be thriving. This area has seen the most positive outcomes and profits. If this is the option you’d like to select, beware of these potential issues:
- Speed up the shipping process and cut the overall duration of the procedures,
- Make sure that the prices aren’t too high and explore the competition,
- Enable excellent customer service and provide the much-needed support timely and professionally,
- Ensure the quality of goods or services you sell,
- Come up with an efficient plan for refunds and shorten the time they might take.
If you take good care of these crucial aspects, there is no shadow of doubt – your eCommerce will prosper.
How Much Does it Cost to Start an Ecommerce Business?
The precise answer to this question depends on your aims. The truth is – it doesn’t really take much to cover the basics. For starters, these are the things you must have:
- Domain name and hosting,
- Payment processor.
In addition, you should have a proficient designer who will take care of the visual aspect. If you can’t manage your website immediately, at least make sure to hire a knowledgeable graphic designer and get your logo done. Then, you will also want to invest more in marketing. And at some point, you could also need to rent a warehouse.
Still, until you proceed with these important assignments (and their costs), get to know about the essentials:
- A domain name can cost up to $15 a year, and hosting ranges up to $250 a month (with $30 being an average price for this service),
- Inventory can cost up to several thousands of dollars, but it also depends on your budget and the goods you intend to sell,
- Payment processing usually takes about 3% of your earnings per transaction.
Keep these ranges in mind when selecting your methods and allies. Consider your finances and give it an extra minute before setting your eCommerce business ideas in motion.
How Do I Start an Ecommerce Business With No Money?
Coming up with a good eCommerce business plan while being low on cash is actually possible. How so?
- Be careful with the area you choose – select a niche and a type of goods that you can easily acquire (and sell later on),
- Create a simple strategy and be sure to stick to the patterns and schedules,
- Get your hand on some DIY tutorials to enhance the impressions,
- Avoid risks and be well-informed about everything going on in the market,
- Target your audience rightly to speed up the process,
- Prepare stocks of products you’ll be selling online.
If you want to start an online shop while having a limited amount of resources, go for dropshipping. This is the simplest way to avoid piling up enormous amounts of inventory (and renting a warehouse). Your prime task would be to advertise this business properly.
And if you’d rather sell specific services online, there are quite a few profitable options to explore. Online tutoring is just one alternative. Assess your skills, time, and aims before starting and create a realistic agenda.
What Skills Do You Need for Ecommerce?
Regardless of your line of work, promoting some essential skills is unavoidable to succeed. When running an online business, it is crucial to be mindful throughout each point of communication and through the entire sales funnel. You are bound to understand the people and their precise needs. That way, you can adjust your approach to suit different types of customers.
Still, aside from these fundamental communication and listening skills (and a bit of industry knowledge and gut feeling known as mojo estimations), there are other important areas of expertise you need to master:
- SEO and content marketing,
- Data analysis, collecting, and interpretation,
- Graphic and web design,
- Web development,
- Email marketing (and automation),
- Project management.
Since it can be tough to gather an entire in-house crew of people with these skills, many people choose to outsource. They rely on remote teams, BPO companies, or individuals who perform specific tasks on their behalf. That way, business owners get to speed up the processes, enhance customer experience, ensure to entice returning customers, boost their brand awareness, and save a lot of time and money in the meantime.
Outsourcing as the Best Strategy
There are countless benefits of outsourcing eCommerce business owners should keep in mind. Firstly, by choosing to collaborate with a third-party expert team, you would see the results faster. These people will enhance delivery and shorten the processes instantly. And even though outsourcing used to be perceived as a practice that suits large organizations and enterprises, the practice has shown that small firms and startups obtain even more advantages when employing this business model.
So, what are the benefits of outsourcing in eCommerce?
- More focus on core business functions,
- Guaranteed expertise and relevant knowledge,
- Less time invested in training and onboarding,
- More coverage,
- Multi-language support,
- Omni-channel support,
- Long-term success and profits.
By choosing to outsource web development, data entry, graphic design, or customer support – you will have excellent results pretty quickly. That is – if you do the research correctly and find the best outsourcing company that meets your requirements.
Choose a BPO Company for Web Development and Customer Service
Spotting the advantages of outsourcing when it comes to online businesses is super easy. In fact, when you get to know more about these virtual stores, you will immediately grasp the significance of finding a reputable BPO partner.
These are the leading roles to outsource with eCommerce:
- Sales and order processing,
- Content writing, SEO, and digital marketing,
- Web development and a variety of other tech-related roles (such as data entry, testing, security, and more),
- Graphic and Web Design,
- Customer support and call center.
Still, web development and customer service outsourcing will undoubtedly bring the best results. These are the vital parts of your business-to-be. And as such, they demand special attention. Nevertheless, hiring qualified individuals who will manage these assignments is expensive and time-consuming. And that is why you should find the right firm and outsource web development, design, and various customer services.
By boosting these two segments, your overall customer experience will skyrocket. Nothing is more of a buzz-killer than waiting an entire eternity for a website to load. And since most of your buyers will be reviewing the products from their phones – you can’t just let them scroll through a page that’s not mobile-friendly and responsive.
Find a skillful third-party team of web developers and build a memorable experience to ensure profits.
Follow These Tips and Learn How to Start an Ecommerce Business
While exploring the eCommerce business models and designing your path, be sure to follow the necessary steps. That way, you will build an online store that will succeed. Start by evaluating your ideas and writing them down. Break them into tiny bits to understand how each of these parts will work. It would be best to boost your savings before commencing this journey. And if that’s not an option – follow the proven tips that will help you build an internet store with very little money.
If you need additional advice on how to start an eCommerce business, consider outsourcing. By doing so, you will get to see the results sooner. Just let us know when you’re ready.