Before I started my business, I spent a few years drifting on the entrepreneurial ocean with only a vague idea of what I want to implement from the many ideas in my head. But my main idea was this: “I want to sell products over the Internet.”
If you’re in the same boat as me, so to speak, then I have some basic, actionable, groundbreaking advice that I hope will help you achieve your desired outcome and goal.
There are a number of things you should probably do before starting an online business. For example, you should give serious thought and consideration to writing a business plan; you can also appoint a responsible person – a person who will manage your business. There are many things you may need to do before starting your own ecommerce business that are far beyond the scope of this article.
However, in terms of selling online, I can tell you from experience that there are at least four things you will definitely need:
Table of Contents
1. Products you are going to sell
Although it seems obvious, you will need to have “products” in stock that you will be selling. You should also remember that some things are better for selling online than others. Many articles have already been written on this topic, but in general, you should look for products that will either be available only to you, i.e., will be exclusive or not widely distributed and available in other online stores. Also, your warehouse should have an all in one epos for tracking on inventory and supply chain management.
Also keep in mind that your success will depend on people who can find your site using the search function of the products they are interested in on major search engines such as Yandex, Google and Bing. Therefore, before choosing your product, you should do some keyword research – you can do this using the Keyword planner feature on Google AdWords.
Ideally, you should find a product that can be described very accurately in a few words, a key phrase that a significant number of people regularly search the internet for. It’s easiest to categorize search engine results based on a specific product. For example, it’s easier to search for “French tablecloths” or “Provencal tablecloths” than just “tablecloths”.
2. High quality images
Internet sales is the art of selling your products to people who are sitting (or standing, or walking somewhere) in front of monitors and gadgets, looking at digital images. So, image quality is extremely important, if you don’t have good quality photos of your products, you will fail.
If you are lucky and your products are presented with clear, high-quality images. If not, then you need to take the photos yourself (if you have the necessary photography equipment and skills) or hire a professional photographer to do it for you.
3. E-commerce site
An e-commerce site is a site where you actually sell your stuff and is more than just a “regular” site. In addition to giving, you good results for showcasing your products, it will help you manage your business, products, take orders, accept credit card payments, and more.
If you want to have your own ecommerce site, you need to sign up with an ecommerce web service like Shopify, BigCommerce, or Volusion. Luckily, all of these services make building a website a breeze—they have a variety of attractive templates for mobile site designs, free trial periods, and a low-cost monthly subscription plan designed for newbies to e-commerce.
4. Internet marketing plan
If you want to sell your products online, people should be able to easily find your offerings online. There are a billion pages of information on how to use tools such as organic search, paid search, social media, email marketing, blogging, and more. In order to sell your products or services online, you should definitely be willing to spend some time and learn all the important details about it. But in the end, you will most likely be doing the following two things:
- Fight for the “original” (unpaid) search result.
- Using some combination of paid advertising services such as Google AdWords, Google Merchant, Bing, Facebook, Pinterest and others.
You will also need to learn how to monitor the effectiveness of your online marketing campaigns using tools such as Google Analytics.
Other than that, the best advice I can give you is to go ahead and start your own business. Choose one of the offered e-commerce platform services and sign up for a free trial. Take a few catchy and worthwhile products that you are going to sell. Post them on your site and voila! You have become part of an online retail business.
Stop loitering around, start rowing and steer your boat forward and only forward, and before you know it, you will already be selling on the Internet!