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Have it in mind to setup an online store great one, now is the right time we would be looking at ten steps to starting and setting up your online store also note that if you are not really technical person it’s best you employ a Web developer to get it all running for you.

Choose what too sell.

A crucial element to starting an online store is choosing what to sell. One way to do this is based on your target audience.

What product or service can you offer this population that isn’t yet on the market? What pain points can you solve? What service already exists but can be offered better? What can you sell that can help or excite your customers?

However you choose your product to sell and whatever the product is, check that it fulfills a need.

Choose your target audience

One of the first things to consider when opening an online store is who you’ll be selling to. This is important for determining products to sell, website design, marketing techniques and shipping needs.

If you already have a product idea, use that to determine who the ideal customer of the item would be. If you’re starting an online store from scratch though, consider the audience you want to target. Ask yourself: How old are they? Where do they live? What interests do they have?

Now’s a good time to create buyer personas to nail down exactly who you are aiming to target with your store.

When choosing a target audience, a good idea is to choose one you’re familiar with. In order to successfully create, sell and market products, you’ll need to really get to know and understand your customer base. So if you set out targeting a specific community that you’re already a part of, this process will be easier.

Find a supplier.

Getting a supplier to source your products from is also a very important factor as it helps order fulfillment and improves credibility.

Get a domain name and hosting.

Once you know what you’re selling, who you’re selling to and how you’re selling it, it’s time to work on creating a memorable name for your business.

Brainstorm words associated with your product, industry, values or what makes your brand unique. Use this word bank to put together your brand name. You can also use a business name generator to gain some more ideas.

To guide your business name choice, consider SEO. Find terms shoppers are using by checking related online searches and Google Trends. For more tips on keyword research, use this SEO Guide.

Include your product category or a specific product in your name so shoppers know what you offer right away. For example, if you’re selling hats, you can include the word “accessories,” “fedoras” or “caps”.

A hosting is very vital to your store as it stores your database and website files.

Pick an e-commerce platform.

There are lots of ecommerce platforms out there ranging from WordPress(woocommerce), shopify, magneto and so on.

Here are some factors to consider when choosing an eCommerce platform:
  • Tools: Does the platform offer you everything you need to turn your business into a success? Can you use it to create marketing campaigns, manage inventory, sell on multiple channels and get paid? Can you automate sales tax, customize your checkout experience or add online chat? Basically, can the platform grow alongside your business?
  • Specialty businesses: Do you plan on selling CBD, are you looking to create a subscription box business or do you have a different specific niche business idea? Does the platform offer you the capabilities you’ll need to create your ideal store?
  • Pricing: Does the platform have a pricing package that meets your eCommerce needs while making sense financially? Will you be able to upgrade your plan to make use of more professional tools as your business grows? Are the necessary marketing capabilities and business management resources included in the plan?.

Connect a payment provider.

When it comes to starting an online store, what matters most is how you’ll get paid. This is an important step to make sure your business can smoothly and securely accept payments online.

First, decide what payment methods you’ll want to accept. It’s a good idea to offer your customers multiple payment methods so they have the payment option they like and use most. Depending on your location, you can usually choose one or multiple payment methods, such as:

  • Credit/debit cards
  • Digital wallets (like PayPal)
  • Bank transfers
  • In-person payment

Optimize for sales.

Now’s a good time to really get into designing your online storefront and making sure that the design is optimized for conversions. While it’s important that your eCommerce website looks good, you also want it to guide customers seamlessly through the buying and checkout process.

Branding.

Make your eCommerce store unforgettable with strong eCommerce branding. Branding includes everything from your business’ name, logo, color palette and tone of voice. Your business’ brand should strongly relate to the type of company you are and who your target audience is.

Create a logo for your business with simple shapes and clearly legible words. You’ll want to create an image that’s instantly recognizable, whether it’s on a small social icon or a part of your packaging. Your logo will define your business in a glance, so take your time with this and try to create something special.

Business Structure.

This aspect at times might require some legal consultation so i would advise you seek some consultation before determining this but in most cases it’s usually a sole-propietorship.

Here are four of the most common business structures:
  • Sole Proprietorship: This means you and your business are linked legally and financially. If you’re just starting out with your online store, this is most likely what you want. It’s the easiest form of business to start and makes it easier to register your business.
  • Limited Liability Company (LLC): This option lets you keep your personal and business assets separate, making starting a business a little less risky. LLCs are relatively quick to set up and offer various business tax benefits.
  • Partnership: If you’re starting your business with a partner, you’ll need to sign a partner agreement when launching. This’ll track what each partner’s roles, responsibilities, investments and rights.
  • Corporation: A corporation usually refers to an established business that includes shareholders and employees. There are various types of corporations you can create.
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