Starting an e-commerce business can be a challenging venture, but it doesn’t have to be. In this article, we’ll walk you through the 7 steps you need to take in order to launch your own e-commerce business. These will be the key concepts that will aid you as you build your start-up and help you set up your own shop sooner rather than later.
Before we get into the details, it’s important that you understand the ins and outs of launching an e-commerce business so that you don’t waste precious time and money. Read on to discover more about how starting an e-commerce business can help grow your brand, drive revenue, and create a steady income stream for your future.
What is an E-commerce Business?
E-commerce is the term for online shopping, similar to what you might find at a physical store. E-commerce businesses typically sell products or services and have a web page that can be found through search engines. These companies often enlist the help of a digital marketing agency in order to help them reach their target audience as efficiently as possible. If you’re wondering what it takes to start an e-commerce business, here are 7 key steps:
1) Understand Your Goals – First of all, it’s important that you understand your goals when starting an e-commerce business. Why do you want to start your own store? What is your target market? What are your main objectives? If you know these critical points before moving forward, you’ll be able to laser-focus your efforts on reaching those goals.
2) Research Your Target Audience – Once you know your goals, it’s time to research your target audience. You should also understand how they shop and what they like to buy so that you can create the perfect product for them. This will help maximize revenue and ensure that the most people see your product.
3) Create Product Ideas – Once you understand who would be interested in buying from your company, it’s time to figure out what kind of products would interest them the most and come up with product ideas based off of this information.
4) Plan Your Marketing Strategy – You need a plan if (note from Dan: the sentence ends here…?!)
How to Start an Ecommerce Business
Step 1: Create a business plan Before you launch your business, it’s important that you create a business plan. This will lay out all the key goals for your e-commerce business and what steps need to be taken in order to reach those goals. It’s also a great way to ensure that you are on the right track before spending any money or getting too far into the process.
Step 2: Develop a website Next, develop a website that is designed specifically for your e-commerce business. This will give your customers an idea of what they can expect when they shop with you. It’s important that this page is engaging and easy to use so that visitors stay on the site longer and purchase more products.
Step 3: Create social media accounts Social media is another key cog in online marketing for e-commerce businesses, but it is also one of the most difficult things to get started with. You need talented people who understand how to leverage these channels effectively if you want them to work for your company. Regardless of whether you hire someone or do it yourself, creating social media accounts will help you engage with potential customers on different platforms and build brand awareness in new ways.
Step 4: Set up shop on Shopify If you don’t have an established domain name, Shopify offers unlimited domains at no cost. With this service, setting up your start-up store won’t take much time at all! Plus (note from Dan: abruptly ends again!!!)
Step 1: Research and understand your market
The first step to starting an e-commerce business is doing your research. Find out what products and services are already in demand among your target audience. What’s the most popular item? What are their demographics? What are their tastes and preferences? Who are your competitors like? These questions help you get a better understanding of your market and which path you want to follow.
Next, figure out which other resources you need in order to launch your business. Do you need a website for your e-commerce store, or will you be using a platform such as Shopify or Bigcommerce? Do you need social media accounts, insurance, or storage space for products that will be sent from suppliers to buyers? For now, just focus on one step at a time without worrying about all the moving pieces.
Step 2: Build a solid foundation
Starting an e-commerce business is all about building a solid foundation. This includes setting up your website, coming up with a strong business name, and developing your brand identity. After you’ve figured out the basics, it’s time to start building your product line and getting the word out about your new venture. Keep in mind that at the beginning of your journey, you won’t make a lot of money. You’ll be investing quite a bit of time and effort into launching an e-commerce business before you see any return on investment (ROI). But remember: if you’re going to put in the work now, you could reap benefits down the road. It’s important to set realistic goals for yourself so that you can build momentum over time.
Step 3: Establish your brand voice and aesthetic
In order to stand out from the other e-commerce start-ups, you need to establish your brand voice and aesthetic. This means you have to be mindful of what people want, who your target audience is, and where they are located. If you are able to establish a strong brand message with a clear aesthetic, this will help increase revenue for your business. Your brand voice and aesthetic should also align with your brand values and mission statement so that there is no confusion in how you wish to portray yourself. If it doesn’t fit, then it won’t work!
Step 4: Design your site’s layout and platform
Designing your site’s layout and platform should be a top priority. You should think about how you want your store to look and function before beginning any coding or design work. For example, you might decide that you want your website to have a clean, minimalist aesthetic that uses white space and contrasting colours to draw the customer’s eye in, or you might want it to be bright and colourful with cartoon-like graphics.
You need to decide what kind of e-commerce experience you want your customers to have on your site. This will help determine the type of platform your site needs to use, such as an online store that lets customers browse products with a menu on one side and a checkout process on the other, or an e-commerce platform like Amazon where everything is on one screen.
After deciding what style you want for your website, create wireframes (or mockups) of how it will look when it’s finished. These mockups give designers a sense of what the final product will look like without having to build it from scratch. Once you have these approved by those in charge of designing your site, move into prototyping so that they can visualise the end product even better. Once you get all of this done, start building!
Step 5: Add products to your store
This is arguably the most important step in the process. It’s also the easiest. All you have to do is decide on a product, determine your price, and upload it to your store. Once that’s done, you can start driving traffic to your new e-commerce business. If you’re not sure where to start, try looking at items similar to what you want to sell and consider how they are priced.
You may be wondering how much money this will make for you when it comes to income. This all depends on how much time and effort you put into building your e-commerce business. But it’s safe to say that if you invest some time and energy into building up your website, social media presence, and learning about online marketing, then investing a little bit of money into creating products can be rewarding in the long run.
Step 6: Optimize your site for search and display ads
Next, you’ll have to decide what type of advertising campaigns you want to run on your website. You’ll need both search ads and display ads to generate revenue.
Display ads are banner advertisements, text links, or video advertisements that are shown on the web page. Because they are seen by customers who do not reach the site directly from a search engine result, they offer a high-quality CPC (cost-per-click) rate while providing a low CPM (cost-per-thousand impressions) cost. These ads show up more often than search ads on the same webpage because they can be targeted to specific audiences.
Search ad campaigns are very similar in nature to display ad campaigns but with one major difference: they appear in search engine results pages (SERPs). Since these particular ads are always visible on the SERP, they command a higher CPM cost than display ads.
Step 7: Track performance and make adjustments
Understanding the performance of your e-commerce business is vital. You will be able to see how well your business is performing and make adjustments if necessary. In order to track your performance, you’ll need to be able to track traffic, sales, inventory, and more. To learn more about tracking these metrics in Google Analytics or another tool tool of your choosing, check out our blog post on how to use Google Analytics for e-commerce.
As you continue to grow your business, we recommend that you set up a plan with key milestones that establish objectives for each quarter. These milestones should be specific and measurable goals that will provide you with insight into what worked and what didn’t work, allowing you to make changes as needed.
Ready? Let’s get started! (Note from Dan: Engage CTA needed here?)