How to start an e-commerce business

Entrepreneur creating her e-commerce website

Digital evolution has made it easier for people to start their own business and e-commerce is a vivid example. However, starting an e-commerce, like any other business, takes patience, effort, time, and it is not a surprise that it might get overwhelming to think where exactly to start. 

For this reason, it is important to create an action plan that lets you prioritize your resources and figure out an organized way in which you can achieve the set objectives. 

Keep reading to find out how to build a successful e-commerce in 8 easy steps. 

Step 1: Do your research

Think about what kind of e-commerce you want to build and do your research.

Who is your competition?

Are people already selling those products in the location you want to sell?

What will be your differentiator?

What are the laws regulating e-commerce in your country?

Maybe by doing your research you may realise that you love the idea of selling online but e-commerce is not the selling point you are looking for.

If this is your case, you might be interested in learning how to sell online for non-e-commerce. 

Businesswoman doing her business research

Step 2: Make a business plan

A business plan is a written document in which you identify, describe and analyse a business opportunity. This plan covers all the procedures that you have to make in order to transform a business opportunity into an actual business project. 

This is an amazing tool to know where you are starting and with which resources. Also, it provides you with an economical and financial projection which is really important to see if the business is feasible.

Remember that this plan will help you to manage your business in the long run. 

What you need to cover in your business plan is the following:

  • Who you are? – Analysis of the situation.
  • What do you want to do? – Your objectives.
  • How do you want to do it? – The strategic plan.

Step 3: Choose an e-commerce platform 

There are several e-commerce platforms out there for you to choose and start building your website. Remember that you need to make the best decision from here as changing platforms in the future may be costly and of course, will take a lot of effort and time. 

Choose one of these platforms based on how much you are willing to invest and what it has to offer. 

Step 4: Source your products

You will need to think about who will supply you with the products you will sell. Maybe you are planning to do handcrafts so you will be your own product source or any other product made by you.

Or maybe you will need external suppliers for which you have two options.

Firstly, stock the products at home, customise them and in this way, be the one that will send the products to the customer through a courier.

Secondly, the other option is to negotiate with your supplier for them to do direct delivery to the customers.

All of these options are available for you and it doesn’t matter which one you choose; the most important thing is to have the logistics of your business clear in your mind before launching it. 

Couple doing their product inventory

Step 5: Create a branding strategy

Branding is not only what causes your customers to create a memorable impression of your e-commerce, but it also allows them to know what to expect from you.

It is not a secret that e-commerce that manages their branding well has the highest profit margins. 

This means you will need to create a logo that stands out, design a beautiful website, brand your products and write outstanding descriptions. But what it’s more important is to communicate who you are to the people out there wondering why to buy from you and not from the competition. 

Step 6: List your products

Enter all the products with its price and proper description, remember to put high definition pictures as this will give your e-commerce a clean look and you will be able to make good first impressions.  

Remember that after finishing posting your products you are ready to make sales, so everything needs to be perfectly set up to receive your first visitors. 

Woman entrepreneur stocking her products

Step 7: Create a social media strategy

Social media is important for any kind of business. You will need to choose the one that will help you grow your e-commerce based on your target personas, thinking about which platforms you will find them.

We have some tricks that may be useful to drive more traffic to your e-commerce from your social media. 

Sharing, not selling

It is true that most people start their buyer journey on social media, however, they don’t go there specifically to buy.

Build a relationship with your potential customers first and focus on sharing helpful information and useful content for them before promoting your business. 

Use shoppable posts

Shoppable posts give you the opportunity to showcase your store within social media. You can use them in standard images and stories.

Keep in mind that this is a huge help for you to sell your e-commerce products so don’t waste the opportunity to do it.

Woman buying online

Invest in social media ads

Keep in mind that social media ads allow you to target ideal customers as ad platforms like Facebook ads have sophisticated target capabilities. This is the best way to take advantage of your social media and drive more traffic to your website. 

Step 8: Advertise your e-commerce

You probably should know this, but customers will not just arrive out of nowhere, you will need to advertise your products.

Depending on what you sell you can advertise on social media using Facebook ads, Instagram ads, Pinterest ads or Google ads. 

After doing this you will be able to retarget the audience that already had some interaction with your business. This means you will be able to approach the people that already shown some kind of interest in your products or services.

Keep in mind that if you need any help creating an outstanding E-commerce we can work with you from the beginning to deliver the website of your dreams.

E-commerce-website

This post is also available in: Español

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