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Why an e-Commerce Business Could Be Your Future
  Posted on June 8th, 2015
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Posted On: June 8th, 2015
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Selling products is a sound business model as long as there is a market for your goods. The traditional way of starting a small retail business was to sell in markets and other temporary locations, and when an established customer base was formed, it was time to open a bricks and mortar store. There is nothing wrong with this approach, but with the advent of internet shopping, the opportunities for developing a successful e-commerce business are endless. So, what are the advantages of selling online and where do you begin?

Low Start-Up Costs

The biggest advantage of opening an online store is that the entry costs are very low. Anyone can start selling on established websites such as eBay and Etsy. You don’t even need to invest in much stock to begin with: start off small and see if you can make a profit. The risk factor is also extremely low and if you subsequently decide selling is not for you, you haven’t lost much other than time.

Market Research

Before investing in stock, think carefully about what market you are targeting and whether there is a demand for your products. Some niches are very much in demand, but the market is saturated and profit margins are so close to the wire it is hard to make a living without gleaning more information about your target customer. Other niches are less in demand, but as long as you don’t have much competition, you can make a decent living. Good research will pay dividends in this regard so don’t be tempted to skip this step.

Begin on an Established Platform

eBay, Gumtree, Etsy, Amazon and the like are all an ideal platform for novice sellers to start selling online and building a business. Established sales platforms such as eBay and Amazon take care of the back office stuff such as payment gateways and customer service, in return for a fee of course. They also give you access to a vast marketplace, so sales are pretty much guaranteed.

Create an Online Store

Eventually the limitations and frustrations of operating on platforms such as eBay and Amazon will probably make the notion of opening your own online store a lot more attractive. It’s really not that difficult. You can try an established e-commerce platform such as Shopify, or have a go at building a self-hosted online store using a platform such as Magento.

Market Your Online Store

Once your store has been built and you have filled its virtual shelves with stock, you need customers. Website SEO is obviously very important, however, so do make sure your new online store is optimized for web traffic. Once you have this bit cracked, it is time to have a go at online marketing.  There are dozens of ways to market an online store: social media, PPC, and email marketing to name but three. Try a few on for size to help you find the most effective strategies and one thing doesn’t work so well, move on to the next method. Online sales are increasing by the day, so now is an excellent time to build a successful e-commerce business. The possibilities are endless!
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