Start an online business, still dreaming…?
To start an online business is a great opportunity for many people, this is something to focus your mind on, as it allows you to be your own boss and work from home.
You will be able to fit work around other work or family commitments.
Whether you want to make a bit of extra money on the side or plan to work full time, this article will give you all the details you need to know about when starting an online business …!
Research and planning
The first step would be to identify a gap in the market and decide what type of products or service you plan to sell.
Many people make the mistake of finding a product that they love and thinking that it will be easy to sell.
This is not always the case however. It is a better idea to do research on the internet and find a gap in the market.
There may be a specific problem that people often have, but they can’t find a solution to it?
If you can then come up with a useful solution it’s most likey you will have sales.
By looking at forums and comments on websites or blogs you can identify what consumers are looking for.
You can also use the internet to look at what your competitors are selling with the aim of doing better than they are.
You could sell products at a cheaper rate or stock a larger selection of products than your competitor.
The next step would be to write great copy for your future website.
This would include a description of your business and what you do.
Each product that you are planning to sell will need a product description.
Sell your Business
The trick here is to sell your business, making items seem as appealing as possible to encourage customers to purchase them.
Talk about how the product will be of benefit to users lives. You could also include reviews or testimonials from people who have bought the items.
If you are just starting out give friends, family or neighbours some products to try and ask them to write a review for your site.
When starting an online business it is also important that you consider the logistics of delivering the products to customers.
Will you use a delivery service or post items?
What will the cost of that be? What type of packaging will you use for each product to make sure that it arrives safely.
It’s also a good idea to give customers an estimated delivery date so that they know when to expect their order.
Building your website
Building your website is an important and exciting step for anyone starting an online business.
It’s important to keep your web page looking modern and uncluttered.
Choose simple fonts and include a nice image to help promote your business.
People are unlikely to spend long looking at a website if the homepage doesn’t grab their attention so it’s important to get this right.
You can design your site using a web platform like WordPress that is easy to use and setup, with a good theme that is free to start with, from WordPress.org you can be up and running in a very short time.
Next you need a hosting service form Bluehost or Hostgator, these are only two examples of many out there to choose from!
Or you could pay a web designer to make you a professional looking site, the choice is all yours.
It’s also very important to create a simple checkout process; if someone has to spend too long inputting details when trying to buy something they will get bored and look elsewhere.
Use Social Media
Using social media to help spread the word about your business is also a great way to get you noticed.
By writing about your products on social media sites you will help generate interest in your followers, where you can also include a link back to your website.
This will help to encourage sales.
You can also include a ‘send to a friend‘ button on your website to encourage people to recommend your business.
This form of communition is proven to be cheaper and more effective than any other types of marketing.
Build up a subscription list by asking your customers to opt in.
You can then send them weekly or monthly emails updates detailing new products that you have in stock or telling them about your most popular items.
This will help to encourage customers to return to your site again and again.
Research shows that about 36 per cent of people will make repeat purchases..?
If a customer has purchased from you once they may buy from you again.
However it is important to follow up any sales that you have made to encourage this to happen.
By using upselling tactics you can encourage customers to buy from you again.
You may consider offering customers products that complement their original purchase.
This can be done by email or on a ‘Thank you’ page after they make a purchase.
It is also possible to send out electronic loyalty coupons or point that can be redeemed on their next visit.
By rewarding customers for their loyalty they will become even more loyal.
Good luck with setting up and running your on-line business, for further help with this Click Here