How to Start an e-Commerce Business From Home
One of the best things about e-Commerce is its global reach, flexibility, and convenience. You could sell products in Japan from your couch in New York. And for models like dropshipping, you don’t even have to worry about inventory or shipping. It’s no wonder a lot of people flock to e-Commerce as a source of livelihood. But even with the influx of new players, the industry is still lucrative and easy to set up. Here’s how:
What You Need
A Wireless router: The internet is an extremely important element of your e-Commerce business hence, your internet connection should not be compromised on. We’re not talking about going to the cafe nearby that offers free wifi or piggybacking on your neighbor’s Wi-Fi because its always on. You’ll need a strong, stable, connection that you can count on being available when you need it—you need your own wifi. One thing that people don’t always take into consideration is the type of router they use. High-quality routers boost the speed of connection and security. You can purchase a wireless router from trusted online stores like NewEgg.
Product supply: There are two major e-Commerce revenue models you can adopt—warehousing, and dropshipping. The warehousing model requires that you store products in a warehouse or other storage facility until an order is placed online, you then ship. The dropshipping model does not require you to store any inventory. You partner with manufacturers or wholesalers and list their products on your website. When someone places an order, you forward that order along with other necessary details like address, and the manufacturer ships to the customer directly. Your profit is your markup from the manufacturer’s price. More on this later.
A domain: You’ll require a place to host your website. Alternatively, you could leverage consumer-to-consumer platforms like eBay, Etsy, etc.
A business name: You’ll need this for identification and legal purposes. A business name is also important for branding and marketing.
EIN, licenses, and permits: These are legal requirements
How To Begin
Decide what to sell: One of the most important decisions you’ll make is the market you venture into. The right decision is rewarded with growth. The wrong decision could cost you your business, so before deciding what to sell, you should carry out market research. A rule of thumb is that your product should solve a problem, but that doesn’t always have to be the case. With proper marketing and brand positioning, you can make money selling even leisure products.
Register your business: You’ll need to register your business with the government in order to be recognized, to avoid infringing on other businesses, and to receive tax identification numbers and other necessary licenses.
Setup your business model and structure: Like we previously mentioned, there are a few business models you can adopt: B2B, B2C, C2C, C2B, subscription, etc. Each model has its merits and drawbacks.
Set up your website: You have two options: you can set up your own website, or you can set up a store on a platform like Amazon or eBay. C2C platforms offer exposure but may also come with rules and constrictions. If you require total freedom to operate as you wish then a native site is the most optimal option.
Set up supply and logistics: Many e-Commerce businesses have failed because they were unable to provide on-time delivery. Some have run into problems due to a supplier shutting down. So before starting, make sure you have a supply and delivery structure ready. If you are running a dropshipping store it is paramount that your suppliers be quick and ever-available. Thankfully, the industry is not short of services capable of fulfilling WIX dropshipping which is a term that refers to the fulfillment of orders from dropshipping stores on WIX. But these services are not limited to WIX, they fulfill orders from major stores worldwide.