Would you like to make 1000’s or even millions of dollars of extra income every month? Well, who doesn’t? With the ongoing trend in online shopping year after year, now is the perfect time to start your own eCommerce website and start making a decent income.
MixedMade.com started their eCommerce business selling their delightful hot sauce that was solely made out of “Honey + Chili Peppers”. In their first year of operations, they had their revenues skyrocket up to $170,000 with $100,000 coming in from the holiday month alone. How cool is that?
PixieFaire.com was founded by full-time parents through their baby daugheter’s doll admiration. That interest influenced the mother, Cinnamon, in running a doll clothing online business thanks to her interest in designing. The business soon enough grew to generate a hefty total revenue of $50,000 a month toalling up to $600,000 a year.
Luxyhair.com was founded by Alex Ikonn and his wife Mimi after realizing how it was extremely hard to find good hair extensions online. They knew that they have stumbled on a market gap and an extremely promising business opportunity. After contacting several hair extension suppliers in China, their website was launched and their simply idea turned into a million dollar business that was marketed through their own YouTube channel.
NationalParksDepot.us was founded by Robert Nava. While Robert lacked the required experience in sales or marketing as he stated, he was able to launch an eCommerce dropshipping website that brought in around $80,000 of sales in less than 2 months after launching.
Now let’s not get caught up with more success stories and get started with how to start your own eCommerce business and hopefully become the next million dollar business.
Starting an eCommerce business might sound like a tedious task but it is not as hard as you may think. Let me shed some light on basically all the steps required to start your own eCommerce business within a few days along with all the tools you need to get started. No worries, you will not need a huge fortune to start! In fact, most successful business online were started with only a domain name and hosting service provider that cost less than $10/month.
Just remember that you need dedication and willingness to learn and expand in order to become the next eCommerce millionaire.
This is considered to be the most important step in determining the success of your eCommerce business. I personally consider this as the hardest step as two different decisions may diffrentiate between a total fail and a multi-million-dollar business idea.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing an industry and product:
What is the cost price of the product?
If it’s too low (Less than $20), it may be very challenging to reach a good income.
If it’s too high (Over $1,000), customers will probably need to speak with someone through live chat or the phone prior to placing their $1,000+ order. This additional support requires more time, effort, money and dedication, however you will be making a very decent profit as you are going to be more flexible in setting your profit margin.
Many studies have found the ideal price range for online products to be between $100 and $200. So keep that in mind when choosing your product.
Profit margin is basically the percentage of profit you will be making above the original product price you will be paying. Electronics may have a profit margin of 5-15% while phone accessories may have a profit margin of 200%+. So before settling on the product, keep that mind and make sure you are getting the best price from the manufacturer or distributer. This normally required direct contact whether via email or telephone.
Is the Product Available Locally?
If the product is widely available locally in most stores, it will be hard to drive sales since the product can easily be purchased offline. That is not the case though if you can get that product at a much lower price, thus be able to sell it with a decent profit at prices that are lower than local stores. There are many products though that are hard to purchase locally such as 3D printers, car accessories, phone accessories, etc… that would make a very good product to sell online.
If your target product is heavy, it will have high shipping costs which can have a bad effect on your sales. Keep in mind that customers prefer to see “Free Shipping” advertised and that will be hard to meet with a heft shipping fee. Many online vendors combat this issue by adding the shipping price to the product’s price tag and advertising the product as “Free Shipping”. While this may seem as a smart way to overcome this problem, it will be a burden for your or the customer to deal with returns and/or product exchanging.
Passion to that product/industry:
Many webmasters may overlook this but having a passion for the industry you are working/dealing with will make you more aware of the new products, troubleshooting, etc.. Unless you have a brilliant mindset that can research and completely understand the concept of every product you are selling, it is always advisable to start with the thing you like most.
Now that you are settles with the product you want to sell on your eCommerce business, it is the perfect time to search for the manufacturers that provide those products at the best price. Here a few methods to save you tons of time:
Google shopping is a powerful product search engine that ONLY searches for tangible products sold online. It also gives you an idea of who the re-sellers and suppliers are which is a great way to know the profit margin of your competition so that you can set competitive pricing for your products.
There are literally hundreds of online directories of suppliers that make it a piece-of-cake to locate manufacturers. Some directories are outdated while some are worth looking into. Here are a few examples of good ones:
Worldwide Brands – Thousands of wholesalers and over 14 million products. ($299 membership fee)
Wholesale Central – Around 1,500 suppliers and over 700,000 products (Free)
Once you have your list of manufacturers ready, now is the perfect time to reach out to those manufacturers to resell their products. While many manufacturers will prefer to work with big names or companies with a good sales volume history, you will find manufacturers and distributors that will welcome you as a new business.
eCommerce platforms usually manage everything from product/category listings to the final checkout process. There are 100’s of eCommerce platforms available online but I tried nearly all of them and to save your sweat, here are the 2 eCommerce platforms worth trying out as they have the best functionality and are extremely easy to set up:
1) Shopify (Starting at $14/month – Shopify takes care of everything from setting up and running your eCommerce website to processing your customers’ checkout in a very secure enviroment.
2) OpenCart (Free) – OpenCart is an open source solution and is very easy to setup, however it requires some technical knowledge as many elements need to be setup manually.
If you want to get started immediately, Shopify is definitely your best option. If you have a basic understanding of some coding or have a web developer partner, then OpenCart is the way you go since you will have total control over the look and functionality of your eCommerce store.
If you will be using Shopify or any other siimlar hosted eCommerce solution, you will keep this section as Shopify takes care of hosting for you. If you plan on using OpenCart or another open source eCommerce platform, continue reading.
All websites online need a domain name (In our case, it is joefares.com) and a hosting account to store all the files/images on servers to get your website working.
We have a post on our website with the list of the top hosting providers that you will probably find very useful in determining the ideal hosting provider to go for. We personally recommend Siteground, BlueHost, InMotion, iPage, Arvixe for their awesome customer support and ease to your website up and running in a few minutes.
Now if you are new to this and you’re launching your first website, I am pretty sure you are worrying about the design of your website. As many of us are aware that web designers may charge anything from $1,000 to $10,000 to get a decent design done.
No fear, ThemeForest is here! ThemeForest is a theme marketplace where you can buy professional ready made themes/designs anywhere between $20-$59. You will also have access to a control panel to easily change your website’s content, add products, change colors, etc… Do not be fooled by the price tag, in many cases a $59 theme would be 100 times better than a custom made $10,000 website.
Depending on your budget, you can get a professional logo from 99Designs ($299+), 19 Dollar Logos ($19+) or even Fiverr ($5+). I have personally used all three and have had a good experience with all of them.
Search Engine Optimization
Now this step is optional but is very important to consider to have your website succeed fast. Search engine optimization is basically a service that gets your website ranking on page 1 of Google for your target keywords. So if you’re selling baby clothes, you will probably want your website to appear on page 1 of Google whenever someone searches for the term “Baby Clothes”. I would personally recommend you give UltraSEOSolutions.com a shot as they are professional SEOers and they have helped over 8,000 clients achieve top 3 positions for their keywords over the course of the past 8 years of their business. UltraSEOSolutions also provides awesome support and free keyword analysis if you are not sure which keywords to target.
Wondering what’s next? It is time to implement all of the above and get your eCommerce website launced. With all of the above information, you are ready to get started with your eCommerce website and become a step ahead of becoming the next multi-million dollar business on the web. Welcome to the world of eCommerce, you’ll thank me later