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How to Start an Ecommerce Business in 2024
Its never been a better time to start an ecommerce store or brand. Since Covid-19, Ecommerce has moved ahead around 5 years. You can see a massive shift to working from home and buying online. Now the buying online is here to stay. Lets face it, some bricks and mortar businesses really struggled through the pandemic. Many Online stores flourished and those businesses continue to grow. In this article we’ll go into detail on How to Start an Ecommerce Business and give you a better understanding so you can get selling online.
You need to move fast as these businesses are becoming more and more common. In 2019, ecommerce had a 14.1% share in the global retail marketplace. Statista has estimated that by 2023, 22% of all retail transactions will take place online. If this isn’t a sign, I don’t know what is.
In our beginner’s guide of how to Start an Ecommerce Business, we’ll cover how to set up and launch a booming ecommerce business.
We’ll outline the steps needed to start your own ecommerce business, and even better still we have an ecommerce basics online course dedicated to the basics in getting an online store up and running cheaply and smoothly. lets not only talk about the best online businesses to start, but lets go into more detail as per the below list:
- How to research products to sell online
- Should I consider Drop Shipping
- Validating your product idea
- How to source your own products
- Launching your store
- Driving traffic to your ecommerce business
Many people are worried that they wont have enough money to be secure in retirement, this is another reason why having your own eCommerce business is absolutely a good option.
Our aim is to help you understand the ecommerce industry and help you wet your feet so to speak so you to can build a successful and profitable online store.
Research products to sell online.
We want this store to be successful right? So we need a couple of products that are A high-demand product in a growing niche and a product that the market really needs.
How to Choose Your Products
Some of us are lucky enough to have a unique idea or invented / patent protected a product. For those of you that this applies to, we’ll you’re already on the right track. For the rest of us without that head start, no need to worry you don’t need this to create a successful ecommerce store.
You need to think of a product that customers want, you don’t always need to be the best. Hey, if the product you’re selling has the top competitor doing 10 Million a year, you don’t need to instantly beat them as you know a market exists for this product. That means you’ve got a good shot at getting this ecommerce store to a point which creates success.
Here’s some things to consider when looking for your product to sell online.
- Solve a customer pain point.
- Appeal to passionate hobbyists.
- Go with your personal enthusiasm.
- Consider your professional knowledge.
- Capitalise on trends early. Yeah this is a good point right?
- Read customer reviews on current successful products.
- Find product opportunities in keywords.
- Test before you launch.
- Browse what’s trending on online marketplaces
- Research products with higher profit margins
- Start your search with related products
- Always be on the watch for good products
Should I Consider Dropshipping?
If you’ve heard of ecommerce you should have heard of the buzzword Dropshipping by now. This business model is interesting for a few reasons. You don’t need to have the stock on hand which can save heaps of money in investing in stock. However this means lack of control over the product and distribution. While dropshipping is still a viable business, you need to understand the market properly and not rush into this. Also do your own research, ask the right questions and get legal advice. However, Dropshipping is a good way to test out new product ideas while cutting shipping costs and money spent on storing inventory.
Many years ago when dropshipping was new, this was the best online businesses to start, however times have changed and there’s many options now.
Validate your product idea and focus on your target market
Starting an ecommerce business can be a daunting task. It is not just about coming up with a product idea, but also about validating it. You need to know if this product will sell or not, and you need to know that before you start investing time and money into it.
The first step of validating your ecommerce product idea is to ask yourself: “Do people want this?” If the answer is no, then it’s time to move on. You should validate your idea by going through the following steps:
– Define your target customer
– Collect feedback from a sample of potential customers – Come up with a price point
– Determine your profit margin
– Find out if there are any other similar products on the market – Find out what the competition is, and come up with a way to stand out.
Determine your target customer: This is important because you need to know who you’re selling to and how they will benefit from your product. How will they feel after using the product? What problems are they trying to solve? Who’s going to buy this product
How to source your own products
The first step is to find a niche or product category that you know a lot about and that people are willing to buy. If you are not sure what niche or product category, then browse through the top trending products on Amazon.com and find something that interests you, lets of people will refer to this as amazon ecommerce.
Next, search for suppliers of these products on Alibaba.com and contact them via email, Skype, or WhatsApp (if they have it). Tell them what type of products you are looking for and ask if they can send some samples of the items they sell. You can also tell them what price range you want to work in so they don’t waste time sending samples out that won’t be useful to you.
The process of releasing a product can be smooth. Until you realise you can’t find a good and trustworthy supplier for your product. It might leave you asking, how do you source a product to sell on Amazon?
What Makes a Successful Product to Source from Amazon
Selling price under $50, even as low as $25
Monthly keyword search volume over 10,000
Gross profit margin over 25%
Average number of customer reviews should be at least 400
A product that’s not sold by Amazon is ideal but not always a deal breaker
Strong year-round demand
No selling restrictions
FBA eligibility is really helpful (Fulfilled by Amazon)
Finding Suppliers in Australia for Your Small Business
Another source to finding winning products is Reddit, here you’ll be able find manufacturers in Australia. There are plenty of subreddits with reliable supplier recommendations that you have a look at. If you really want to intense dive into your research online directories are your best options. The AU region has several dedicated databases for connecting with local suppliers. Here are some options:
Australian Trade and Investment Commission (ATIC) – Get access to 1000+ listings in any industry. The ATIC is fully government maintained so you never have to worry about dealing with dishonest suppliers. All you need to do is select your niche and state and the website’s search engine does the rest.
Private Label Manufacturers Association of Australia and New Zealand – They connect you with over 3000 suppliers in home care, personal care, pet care, baby food, car care, and industrial cleaning sector.
Australian Private Label – An exclusive database of personal care item manufacturers. Whether you want to launch a skin care product, hair care supplement, or protein shake, APL will help you find a lifestyle supplier that best matches your needs.
Can I Buy Products from China and Sell on Amazon?
Yep you sure can. Amazon ECommerce can be great business and a lot Amazon private label sellers source their supply from China. Find a reliable supplier on Alibaba.com, 1688, Global Sources, DHgate, Trillion Source, or other similar Chinese B2B websites. Here you can get your product manufactured and have it shipped directly to Amazon FBA warehouses of course while you’re at your home.
how to start an ecommerce business on amazon
We’ve gone into heaps of detail on how you can utilise Amazon ecommerce to get selling online. If the demand is high enough, we’ll do a dedicated article starting an ecommerce business on amazon.
Launching your store
You’ve done heaps of work, now to the fun part. Building your own website! Most online stores and suppliers choose sales as a service (SaaS) platform. They are straightforward to use and offer “easy” website building tools and ecommerce platforms.
What is the Best Ecommerce Platform?
There’s a long list of SaaS providers. Before choosing one, start with a free trial to test out its features to see how it fits our needs. Here’s some things to think about when testing your platform:
Website speed and uptime
Ease of use of the website builder
Free, user-friendly themes
Responsive website design
An extensive app store full of reliable plugins
Built-in SEO tools and fully customisable URLs
Promotions, discounts, analytics, and other ecommerce marketing features
Customer support via phone, email and live chat
An unlimited product catalog
Low transaction fees and low credit card processing fees.
Shopify (Our Recommended Pick).
Shopify is an ecommerce monster. Shopify ecommerce solution is also good for dropshipping stores because integrations and store setup is fast and easy. Shopify ecommerce launched in 2004 and became a leading SaaS provider pretty quickly. This platform has many benefits which include abandoned cart recovery, free website SSL, marketing tools and great customer service.
We actually have put together an eCommerce courses online that is designed to help business owners start their own online business and grow their businesses.
Overall, they’re a great, easy to use ecommerce website tool best for small sellers and drop shippers.
Lets get you started with a free trial of Shopify.
User interface website building – the Wix editor shows you how your edits are affecting the design of your storefront.
Huge app market – choose from 250+ free and paid apps to seamlessly add extra functionality to your online store
Multichannel selling – use Wix’s built-in ability to sell on Instagram to expose your brand to millions of new potential customers
Beginner friendly – As the interface is easy to use, with a drag-and-drop editor and mobile responsive templates
Advanced ecommerce tools – including abandoned cart recovery to catch customers who have left items in their checkout
Multilingual sites – grow your business globally by creating multiple sites for different countries
No stock management alerts – Wix won’t automatically tell you when levels are running low.
Wix eCommerce uses the same easy and intuitive drag-and-drop editor you see in their advertising. This allows you to build your very own ecommerce website. There’s no need for coding, hosting, or getting stressing with complex setups. This as simple as picking your template, customising it by dragging and dropping elements like text boxes and images around your pages, and then hit publish button. All of Wix’s ecommerce plans come with a range of great sales tools built-in.
Wix is one of the best overall ecommerce platform on the market.
Driving traffic to your online store.
Launching an ecommerce site is the easy part. The hard part is getting people aware of this website and driving some serious traffic to it.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
SEO is a great way to drive traffic to your new online store. Its best to Perform Keyword Research to understand what your top search terms are.
To perform keyword research, you can use tools like Rankwatch, Moz, Ahrefs and SEMrush. These sites great and show what keywords competitors are using, how often people search for keywords, how costly the keyword is for pay-per-click ads, related keywords and much more valuable information to guide keyword strategy. Another way is to hire an SEO agency as they can offer experienced and valuable insights and perform audits to identify issues that may be keeping your site from being shown in search engines.
Write Guest Posts
Guest posting from other websites is an effective way to generate backlinks, boost referral traffic, and increase search engine results page (SERP) rankings. Its important this is done in a proper strategy where you use the correct high domain authority domain names accordingly.
To start off look at a website’s content and make sure it’s high quality, check its domain authority and study their guest posting guidelines. Also, ask the publication if they’ll promote the post on social media and if they’ll tag you.
Create Great Content
Content writing can be very difficult and time consuming. This can even get costly depending on how you’re creating that content. 98 % of all marketing teams say written content is their most-used content type, yet one in three marketers admit their content writing is only “somewhat” or “not so” effective.
In the end when you care about the content that you produce, post regularly and research what your audience wants to see, web traffic should improve.
Using Social Media on all platforms
We recommend using the COPE method. This stands for “create once, publish everywhere.” It is a technique used to publish messages across all communication channels simultaneously. All you have to do is write a message, select which channels to send to (email, text, phone, app, website, social media, etc.) and click publish
Social media is huge for attracting visitors. Here are some ways it should be used to increase website traffic:
Post content (blogs, e-books, white papers, infographics, videos, etc.) across your social media platforms
Interact with followers by replying to them, reposting their content and tagging them
Use relevant hashtags
Update the link in your bio to promote new content when it comes out
Change a cover photo to promote new content
Tag influencers who may be interested in the content
Include enticing information from the content to encourage people to click the link to it
Reply to other people looking for answers with links to your content
If it was my store, I would first create a strong SEO strategy. This includes conducting keyword research around terms that have high search volume and could bring in your target audience.
Next, you’d want to develop a strong link building strategy and partner with other blogs in your niche to get backlinks. This will increase your website’s Domain Authority (DA) and make it easier to rank all of your pages on search engines.
Conclusion and Final Words
It takes determination and commitment to set up a successful ecommerce store or any business for that matter. You also need a great product in a expanding niche, the right ecommerce platform, and a well-examined marketing strategy.
Yes, it’s a lot of work but if you don’t put in this effort no one else is going to do it for you. And they you’ll create an ecommerce business you can be proud of if you follow the right steps, do the right research and push forward with the business.
Online stores and shopping is here to stay. Don’t forget the 24/7 availability of online shopping being the number one reason people buy online, setting up your ecommerce store might just be one of the best decisions you can make.