How To Start Your Own Ecommerce Business- A Detailed Roadmap

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Shopping online used to be a convenience and a luxury, now – it’s a necessity. Online shopping is just one of many areas that have seen extensive growth over the past five years. According to a report from the U.S. Census Bureau, in the third quarter of 2019, U.S. ecommerce sales occupied 11.2% of all retail sales in the nation. Whereas, the Indian ecommerce industry is expected to be the second largest E-commerce market, reaching $ 99 billion by 2024.

ecommerce sale

This blog illustrates every process in detail to help you to kickstart your ecommerce business. Further, you will also find tips that are essential for beginners planning to start an online business from scratch.

Step-By Step Guide to Kickstart Your Ecommerce Business

Research Ecommerce Business Models
The first thing you have to do is narrow down on the perfect ecommerce business plan or a business model.

There are two types of business models that you can opt for- single vendor or a multi-vendor ecommerce store.

  • Single-vendor marketplace: It only involves two entities – single seller selling to multiple customers. This way you can keep a track of the transactions between two entities and administrative costs are lower when you have to pay just one supplier. You also have more control over the inventory at hand.
  • Multi-vendor marketplace: This kind of business model calls for multiple vendors and customers, with the vendors all being required to be registered with your site. The advantage is that it gives you security in terms of making a sale. For instance, if one of your suppliers is unavailable to sell his or her products, you have others to fall back on. This not only helps you deal with demand fluctuations but also helps prevent a disruption in the supply process.

Pick Your Niche and Validate Target Market
A niche is a defined group of target customers who are willing to buy what you’re selling. The key now is narrowing down on your ideal customer base, and then understanding their needs.
Pick a product category with a minimum of 1000 keywords and focus on a niche that does well in social media, There are various keywords tools available online to simplify this process. If you provide a seed term or keyword, it will suggest related keywords and show you how often each of these related keywords is searched.

Now that you’ve identified a niche and business model, you might be tempted to start selling products online. But before you think about product ideas, think about personas.

Who are you? What does the store represent? Who are your ideal customers? You need to project a consistent brand image. Once you’ve identified the image you want to project and the customer you are catering to, it’s time to come up with product ideas.

Register Your Business
Choose a business name and register your company. There are legal protections and tax benefits for incorporating, so don’t skip it.

  • Get Your Employer Identification Number
    You’ll need an Employer Identification Number (EIN) to open a business bank account and file your business taxes, even if you don’t plan on having any employees. Your EIN is a bit like your business’ social security number that identifies your business and helps you file important paperwork.
  • Apply For Business Licenses And Permits
    Check with your city or state for more insights into sales tax licenses or home business licenses you need, and get those approved before you start operating.

Choose an Ecommerce Platform and Create Your Website
You can either choose a pre-built platform or make it from scratch both have distinct advantages. But building a website from scratch is the more favoured option. PrestaShop, WooCommerce, and Magento are some brilliant tools to create websites for their ecommerce business.

Your website represents your brand visually. Hence, no amount of detail is too little – from the colour to the font and images – everything should be topnotch.

You need to decide whether you wish to self-host it or hire a professional to oversee and run it. You can contact us for hiring certified Prestashop experts who have immense experience in developing high-end websites.

Payment Gateways
In order to be granted a payment gateway for your ecommerce business, you need to submit certain documents. Once you have submitted all these documents, you will be provided with a payment gateway for your online business, using which you can enable online payments. Some of the popular payment gateways are PayPal, PayU and RazorPay.
Logistics

Logistics refers to the process of shipping an order to a customer or transporting an inventory to a merchant. This process also keeps track of the shipped goods which are in transit, until they are delivered to the customer. Most ecommerce business owners prefer to outsource their logistics to a third-party transport and storage company.

Usually applicable when your online business becomes slightly bigger and you gather enough resources to tie-up with a distribution company in the first place. However, if you are running your website from home or a separate office then just send the package directly to the buyer. This will save you the extra cost of having to outsource your delivery process to a third party.
Promote Your Business

SEO Marketing
Grabbing the attention of potential online customers is paramount for the success of your ecommerce business. This is where SEO strategies come in. SEO helps put you on the search engine map. And with 44 percent of online shoppers beginning their search with a search engine, you need to be on their radar.

Advertising
Advertisements are one of the essential routes you need to go to grab the customer eyeball. You can opt for the ‘paid ad’ option on platforms like Facebook and Instagram and pay a certain amount of money, for these platforms to promote your advertisement on users’ daily feeds. Once these users click on the ad and are directed to your website, it is your job to convert them into a potential customer.

Content Marketing
Retargeting Retargeting is a process where a cookie is placed on the computers of those who have visited your site once but have exited without purchasing anything. Once the cookie is placed and when these online users visit another website that shows advertisements from the retargeting network, your ad will then be shown to them.

Start simple, share your business across multiple channels and invest in multi-channel selling.

Ready to Start Your Online Business?
To sum up, starting an ecommerce business in the current scenario is a great idea, considering that the market for it is blooming. Nothing comes easy, so start by taking it one step at a time, as shown in the blog, you can make the process more manageable and easily run your online store.

All you need is vision, plan, and patience to see it through till the end. Jump in and learn by doing. Once you begin turning a profit, invest the funds into an ecommerce marketing plan to continue growing your business.

At PrestaWeb Developer, you can connect with PrestaShop Certified Developers who provide amazing Web Development Solutions. They create easily navigable online stores that drive traffic, engage customers, and offer pleasing shopping experience. Further converting site visitors into customers while promoting repeat buying. Hire PrestaShop Expert today to start your ecommerce business from scratch and make it a success.

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