If you’re planning right now to start an online business or service, then you’re going on a journey to the world of ecommerce. The best part about this type of business is that you can invest just a minimal amount of money to let people know your products are available. Compared to building your own actual store, ecommerce is way cheaper when it comes to investment.
More about Ecommerce
Ecommerce is a shorter and more popular term for electronic commerce. It refers to any type of business or service that uses the internet for communicating with customers and selling products. Under ecommerce, we have retail, music, auction and trade websites as examples. Ecommerce is considered as one of the most important breakthroughs the internet has offered.
The internet can be confusing to both avid users and newbies. Why? There’s a lot going on out there. You might be unsure where to start your business. You’re probably confused in choosing the right website to work with. Making a lot of mistakes during startup can lead to more expenses. I know I said investing in ecommerce can be cheap. But, that is only possible when you know what to do.
I used to work as a marketer for an Amazon business years ago. Here are lessons and realizations I’ve learned as I went through the obstacles of ecommerce:
Choose the right products to sell.
I have to admit, not all products are effective to be sold online. This step can actually be the make or break of your ecommerce business. You don’t have to spend anything in this part of the process. You just have to research before deciding what to sell. Now, the factors you have to consider when it comes to choosing products are availability, level of demand and their disadvantages. Knowing the flaws of a popular product enables you to give a better alternative for it. That’s why competitors emerge, which is a good thing for new businesses.
For example, my client from Amazon wanted to start selling harnesses for dogs. But, he needed to be different from most sellers of this type of product. So, I researched in the negative Amazon reviews of the most popular products. The most common complaints were overly thick harnesses that make dogs uncomfortable because of intense heat. Researching deeper, polyester mesh is a good alternative for a lighter yet still durable material. So, I contacted a supplier to manufacture polyester mesh dog harnesses and package them according to our brand’s logo and image.
Of course, the $100 investment I was talking about doesn’t include the products. You should not start an ecommerce vehicle if you still don’t have the actual products. Manufacturing can take months or years. You don’t want to give your potential customers false hope.
Other ways to research for the right products are getting opinions from your family and friends about what they currently need that is still not popular in the market. You can also ask them about their usual complaints or pet peeves on daily products. You can even research in forums found in Reddit and comments in Facebook pages or groups.
Sell the product with catchy words.
This is also another free process in starting an ecommerce business. You just need your creativity with words. The offer must address directly the product’s special features that are not usually found in its category. In our previous step, you have to research for common complaints in one specific product category. Now, apply it on your own product through catchy yet realistic statements.
Don’t claim “Check out the best dog harness ever!” or “You will never regret buying this dog harness!” These statements are too exaggerated that they seem to appear like clickbait spams. The right statement is “Check out our lightweight and durable pet harness to keep your dog comfortable and cool!”
Buy a domain and create your own ecommerce website.
This time, you need to start spending your $100 budget. Creating a website is either free or not. But, the downside of free sites is that they don’t look convincing enough for the consumers. You can’t mention the company or brand name alone on the site URL. Free URLs usually include the name of the website builder you used after the brand name.
Don’t worry because the only thing you have to spend for is the domain. For less than $50, you can already purchase one. The price depends on the package the site builder offers. The $50 budget for the domain also depends. If you want to hire a web designer, then you would spend extra money.
Good thing that some websites such as Weebly and Wix offer beautiful templates for you to use. I used Wix several times already and remained satisfied because it is so user-friendly. You just have to follow a simple design for your products. What matters most anyway is the content. To achieve effective website content:
- Make sure to be specific and engaging in your words.
- Paragraphs must be short.
- Letters should not be too small and hard to read because of mismatched colors to the background.
- Use high-definition pictures for a more eye-candy site.
- Include links or detailed information to ensure that customers can actually buy your products for real.
Create pay-per-click ads.
How can people see your website and product pages though? For less than $50, you can avail online advertisements though Google AdWords. It seems complex but tutorials in making Google Ad campaigns are easy enough to understand. One ad text is composed of a short title, a link and a short description – just like the ads you see when you search something on Google. Just set a price that’s not too high for each ad text. I usually set only a maximum of $1 for each ad. Fifty dollars can already give you at least 50 views on your website and other pages.
You can also use these free options for better results. Visit Reddit and search a subreddit which is relevant to your brand or product. Simply create a post under that subreddit and leave it up until you get customers. Again, stay catchy with the title of the post. You can also make your own Facebook page and share it with your friends. Convince them to share it as well.
The beauty of ecommerce is that business thrives under your fingertips. It may be easy to start an online business, but you also have to make sure to maintain it. Don’t expect to earn when you start an ecommerce business and just wait for customers afterwards. Do continuous research, find ways to gain extra investment, make more connections, and create additional websites or ads online.