There are a few things that you have to do apart from starting an online store
Getting started can be a difficult step. There seems to be so much to do and learn. But if you take a step at a time and do some home work you will find that it is easy to start selling online. We are always available to help you.
Having a viable and well thought through business plan is really important to help keep you on the right track. You can develop your own business plan easily and then share it with your advisers or partners. You can find more information about what is in a eCommerce Business Plan here.
General Business Requirements
When you are selling online you still are running a business. Every business has the core issues that you need to handle. The objective is to make a profit and grow the business.
You will need products and services that that you will be selling. You might make your own products or you might source them from a supplier (manufacturer or distributor). If you are getting your products from a 3rd party then you need to know the buy price and the cost of products delivered to you. This will help you decide your sale price and set the margin that you will make on each sale. When determining the sale price you need to factor in all your costs such as your outgoing expenses. Looking at the competitors price can often indicate if you are selling at a price that is too low or too high.
Unique Sales Proposition
Price is one deternining factor in the sale but there are other factors as well. These combined can make up the Unique Sales Proposition (USP) that makes your business stand out from others. These factors may be issues like after sales service, delivery time, delivery cost, returns, warranty, packaging, setup assistance, location, availability, options and accessories.
Some times the simplest additional item will set you apart from other competitive companies.
One of the most important is just being online if you are selling a unique or long-tail product not readily found online you may be more successful. It is estimated that by 2014 more than 53% of all sales will be influnced by online search and research.
When you are ready you can move on to Step 2 - Software and Hosting
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