Traditional brick-and-mortar businesses have to pay rent on the storefront, hire employees, and maintain a building from which to operate from.
This week I am talking about How do I do online business work?
For online-only organizations all they have to do is find a way to connect with customers and turn them into customers by collecting their contact information and billing details for future orders.
Traditional brick-and-mortar businesses have to set up an inventory system that allows them to keep track of their available products without going out of business or running out in close proximity deals in time in order to stay in business, but in the case of an online store these are much simpler types of operations because you only need to know how much stock you have and your customers want.
Even if an online business does get a physical location, such as a site like Amazon which has warehouses all over the world, they do not need to pay rent or hire employees on that location for its sole purpose is the storage of products and distribution in a nearby area in order to keep shipping costs down.
With so many establishments starting up in this modern day and age it seems only right that more would start their own online businesses in addition to already having a brick-and-mortar store.
Many people feel lost when trying to figure out how exactly these types of sites work but it is actually fairly easy with just a little bit of research into the topic. If you follow the following steps you will be able to set up your own store and sell products online in no time at all.
Step 1: Decide on a business plan
this is probably the most important thing you should do when trying to start an online store because it will determine how much money your business can make as well as what kind of strategy for advertising and marketing that you should partake in. A good way to come up with ideas about what type of site to create is by looking at existing successful sites such as Amazon or eBay and coming up with something similar but different enough that it stands out from the competition and catches the attention of customers.
Step 2: Decide what to sell
Once you have figured out what type of products you want to sell you need to decide where you are going to find them. If you are looking to find new items then you will need to go out and actually purchase them yourself, but if you are simply looking to act as a middleman that buys wholesale products for people then you can easily find suppliers by searching on Google or contacting your local Chamber of Commerce.
Step 3: Find a way to connect with customers
this is what makes an online business so great because it gives the owner the opportunity to market their products without having to advertise locally or make any physical contact whatsoever. You can advertise your site using free places like Craigslist or eBay Classifieds, paid advertising on sites such as Facebook Ads and Google Adwords which both charge per click of advertisements, press release services such as PRLog where your advertisement will be featured on multiple services for one low price, or you can even pay for ads on existing online stores that are well established in your niche.
Step 4: Create a website
this can be done via free services such as WordPress or Tumblr but if you plan to make the site successful then it is recommended that you purchase a domain name and hosting package from a reputable web host. This will give you complete control over the look of your site plus the ability to expand with more features later down the road without having to switch providers.
You will need to create at least 2 pages after registering your domain name which is about page which tells people who you are and what exactly your business does, and an order page where customers enter their contact information and purchase the items they want.
To make your site appeal to customers you should make it look as professional as possible without having to spend a lot of money on the graphic design since there are already plenty of options available online, but if you are really serious about making your business successful then you will need to invest some money into creating a professional logo for your company.
Step 5: Get sales
this is obviously what every business owner wants to achieve when setting up their website but how does an online store actually get these orders in the first place?
There are many things to take into consideration when setting up a website including designing, marketing and hosting but the most important factor is having a good product. This doesn’t mean that all products have to be unique – there are a lot of good designs on sites such as cafepress.com – it simply means that your product needs to solve a problem for your consumers.