Starting and running an online store
What are you going to sell? Starting an Online Store is super hot!
Online shopping is booming! Blogs and Newspapers are full of online shopping businesses. Physical retail stores are often struggling or have disappeared already. On the other hand, the number of web shops continues to grow, as well as the total turnover. This also means that the percentage of population that’s buying online is increasing which is all super great news, right? Starting a web shop is super-hot? (didn’t we tell you?) ?
So, let us invite you to follow us in a series of posts about the amazing e-commerce world. We’re going to our best to help you challenge yourself and find your success!
To start, we’ll ask a couple of simple questions…
- What are you going to sell?
- How is your online customer going to find your web shop?
- How do you ship the order to them?
In this series of posts, we’re going to develop these questions, helping you in the decision-making process along the way.
Ready? Let’s start!
What kind of online entrepreneur are you?
Some of you will start a ecommerce business as an extension of a hobby; others will actively look for products to sell online without any kind of particular link or bond to them. And that’s fine! There is no right or wrong here, one option is no better than the other. What is important is to remember and consider what the pitfalls are of choosing one or the other.
Pros and Cons
If you are a hobbyist, we’re pretty sure you have a huge passion for the products you’re going to sell online.
Pro: You have a strong knowledge and you can fully support your customer based on your skills and experience
Con: Probably, as a hobbyist, you may run your shop on a part time basis. Chances are that you manage your company as a hobby and not as a professional business and that is dangerous. Business make money and hobbies cost money. Make sure you pay a lot of attention to sales and marketing.
Tip: Face your web shop as a business as soon as possible and try to let go the hobbyist mindset
If you’re looking for specific combination of products without a particular link to them, probably you have a very rational approach about their characteristics and usability.
Pro: You’re flexible and you can analyze which products to sell online and which combinations suits your customer best.
Con: with this approach, you’ll probably lack some knowledge and passion on all the ins and outs of those products. Transferring and demonstrating a real enthusiasm and knowledge can become tricky.
Tip: Try to learn the ins and outs of ‘your’ products, the moment you decide you’re going to sell them. Also imagine yourself in your customers ‘shoes’ and feel their need for these products, this will help you connect and achieve that ownership bound.
Which market are you aiming at?
It may sound like common sense what we’re going to say but…, we’ll do it anyway: do not sell something that everyone else is selling!
Most often we see highly motivated people with the ambition to start an online business based on products like baby clothes and accessories, clothing, sex items, and so on. One thing is sure; the competition is fierce and it will be very difficult to distinguish yourself.
Tip: Consider Niche markets!
Also, to get your visitors converting and buying from you, it’s critical to provide some added value to them. You know what we mean, right? Distinguish yourself from the competitors with, for example, a unique combination of product range or an extensive (and enthusiastic) product knowledge.
You already found what you want to sell and which market to aim for? And you have that Whoa! factor that will get you out there? Great job!
In the next post, we’ll talk about the web shop platforms and how they can help your online business.