Starting an E-commerce business
Starting an E-commerce business is easy yet starting a successful e-commerce business requires strategic planning and sales tactics. Today, I am going to give you some useful tips of starting a successful e-commerce business and sell your products online.
First and foremost, you need to answer yourself this question: am I going to use a self hosted website to run my e-commerce business, or hosted e-commerce business like Amazon or Alibaba?
Second, you need to have a clear strategic plan, and figure out:
A) Who are your customers and the end-users in the market you plan to sell your products to? And what are their consumer behaviors?
B) Who are your main competitors in the market?
C) What is your online pricing strategy? How will it fit with your offline pricing strategy?
D) How and who will promote your new e-commerce activities, and who will provide customer service, what are your social media and mobile content management plan?
E) Do you need to hire any new staff in the market?
F) Do you have the resources to store, pack ship and handle returns? Do you need to rent or buy new premises? How do you deliver your products?
G) Do you need to register your business overseas? Are your sales still below the distance selling VAT threshold in the new country?
If you have clear answers to the 7 questions I asked, then you are all set to go to start your e commerce business.
Third, if you choose to use hosted e-commerce business, here are a few points for you to consider:
✓Agree your requirements first and make sure you get the right package: some package offers different options and features that may not be relevant or crucial indeed.
✓Fees: some suppliers charge a variety of fees such as set-up fee, package fee, transaction fee, support fee. Make sure you add all the costs
✓Storage allowance: this is about how much data, images etc. you can store online.
✓Hosting location: first check which country your website will be hosted in. This may impact on your website performance, SEO. Check also where the support and maintenance team are based, whether they provide 24-hour support to ensure your website is not down during your peak selling time.