When starting an E-commerce business we often find people do not realise there are a number of elements you need to consider and implement just the same as you would any any business start up.
The following gives you a short sharp summary and some of the main considerations to plan for when embarking on your E-commerce business journey:
- You will be required to have an ABN – most online software providers will prompt you to enter one
- Research your market carefully for trending products, consideration needs to be given to your supplier, will you be drop shipping, ie supplier ships directly to your customer, pro’s no inventory costs, pay only when you receive an order, con’s shipping times may take up to 60 days, packaging may not be to your desired standards. Will you be white labelling, ie buying a product and rebranding as your own, pro’s control quality and shipping times. Con’s supplier can disappear especially if you are dealing with Chinese market, language barrier and cultures differences.
- One good alternative is print on demand. Shopify has free connections with POD suppliers where you upload your design to Teeshirts, stationery, tote bags. Customers order your design and the item is shipped directly to your customer once it is printed. Fast however as most POD are in US, international shipping costs may be a barrier outside of US/Canada
- Initial outlay. Many online courses spruik, you can start up with very little investment however the are often more ongoing subscriptions, upgrades and other add on subscriptions to make your store more efficient.
- Domain registration, email setup, customer service terms and conditions, return policy – need to be considered
- Which ecommerce platform, Wix, Shopify, Woo-commerce and BigCommerce are very popular however all need time and some expertise to set-up and customise
- Advertising and marketing your e-commerce shop. The cost can escalate if you are not familiar with online advertising and marketing. Research and target marketing and testing is a necessity.
- Payment gateways, how will you accept payment. At a minimum, you will need a PayPal account or other online payment system. if operating as a business, Paypal account verification will be required and cause potential issues if not completed
- Etsy, Ebay are two platforms where you can upload products for resale without the need to host your own online ecommerce shop, however you do not have control over your business and they have to power to shut you down.
- Which ever method you choose, it takes time, consistency and a willingness to adapt to the ever changing environment of online retail selling.
- Make a 3-6 month plan to roll out all of these steps
The team at EASE are here to help when it comes to the intricacies of starting a business – contact us for an obligation free chat today!