A Guide to Launching Your Ecommerce Business – Part 1By James Barnes, February 11th 2020
Ever wanted to start your own online store? Well, with the ecommerce industry seeing the biggest increase of new businesses in the UK out of all other industries; there is no better time than now. In this series, we’ll be exploring the steps you should take to launch your new ecommerce business.
How to Find Products to Sell Online
We're starting our first blog in this series from the very beginning – choosing your business model and finding your niche in the saturated market of ecommerce. Choosing these aspects is very important, it's the base of your business for the foreseeable future.
Find Your Niche
The key to being successful is addressing peoples' pain points. When people realise they need something, they'll search for it – just like the customer buying process states.
However, you also need to find a gap in the industry. This way you won't be competing against hundreds of other businesses, and you will have one focus so you can meet your customer's expectations.
So, where do you start?
- Write down a list of your interests e.g. home decor, car parts or animal accessories. You will be more likely to succeed if you follow your passion. It will certainly make the day-to-day running of your business much easier if you're enjoying it.
- Find out if you can solve problems by offering ecommerce products in your area of interest. Google's Keyword Planner will be able to assist you with this. It provides keywords, phrases and monthly search volumes.
- Knowing what your keywords are gives you the ability to research your competition. How many other people offer a similar product relating to your interest? Are there any events that specialise in your area of interest that you can attend and gather intel?
Choose a Business Model
There are many different ecommerce business models available, some of one of which could be the perfect opportunity for you, some, perhaps not quite the right match. Take the time to understand each model and choose the right one for you. Below, we have touched on just a few:
Private Labeling is when a manufacturer makes an unbranded product and sells it to resellers. This could be the best choice for you if you don't have the resources to create your own product.
If you don't want to handle your products directly, dropshipping could be an ideal choice. You purchase items from your suppliers once you have received an order, and your supplier will then arrange the delivery on your behalf.
An option that's quickly becoming more popular, you could send your customers a box of products at regular intervals; for example, every month or quarterly. You will need to ensure that your customers see the value of your products to continue their payment.
Find The Right Suppliers
From the get-go, you need to find the best quality products or materials at an affordable price for your business. Not only will this help you stand out from your competitors, it will leave a positive, lasting impression in your customer's minds.
Get To Know Your Customers
You've started this by identifying and hopefully addressing pain points. Now, it's time to create customer personas. This will help you find out and understand who your ideal customers are.
Suppliers don't just stop at your products either, think about delivery partners too – there are platforms out there that will help make your life easier – Despatch Bay is one. We touch on this later on in our series of articles.
Initially this will be time consuming, but it will help you in the long run. Once you have a customer persona, you will use them frequently, particularly during your sales and marketing activities. People can't buy from you without knowing who you are, and you can't contact those people if you don't know who they are.
Deciding on your business model and the products you're going to sell will define your business's success. If it is one that fits within a niche and one you're passionate about, we're sure you'll be onto a winner. To make sure your brand becomes a winner, read our second blog.