Ecommerce is an ever-growing industry designed with the everyday seller in mind. Without independent merchants, sites like Amazon may not be in the position they are today as global e-tail behemoths.
Every day, thousands of people are setting up shop online as a means to escape the 9-5 lifestyle. This post will run through the various ways in which e-commerce can help you retire early.
You Can Develop Your Skills In Branding
If you’re looking to start an online brand, you must think about why you want to go it alone in the first place.
Do you have a specialized skill you can translate into a product line? You may, for instance, have a talent for art.
Through e-commerce, you can set up a t-shirt printing store with no website development experience. Sign up and start building with an easy-to-use a host like Shopify or Squarespace.
There are lots of professional-looking templates that you can customize with branded logos and imagery. Enlist the help of a graphic designer, or consider outsourcing the task to a freelancer from Fiverr.
The idea is to use your site as a place to experiment with products and audience demographics until you find a profitable business model that works.
Purchase a domain name that sounds authoritative and, if this is your first ever store, something that is also quite generic. This will allow you to ‘chop and change’ inventory without compromising too much on the direction of your brand.
You Can Choose A Business Model That Works For You
Once you’re on the way to getting your store up and running, it’s time to start thinking about your business structure.
For most online sellers, you will have the choice of two inventory models:
- You buy a range of items wholesale and resell them through your dedicated store.
- You choose a dropshipping model where your supply and distribution is handled by a third party. This allows you to set your pricing and get your chosen products listed on your site in seconds.
Both business models have strengths and weaknesses. For example, if you are buying in bulk there is the obvious inventory price to cover. However, if your costs are low (e.g. you’re upcycling thrifted items), you will have a higher profit margin.
Dropship models, on the other hand, rely on you selecting the right supplier. You are looking for a company that has five-star reviews and an easy way to track and communicate with their team.
Once you have found a supplier you can trust, you can leave them to handle the shipping and storage of your goods. You can also set requirements on packaging appearances and marketing inserts.
This will give you more opportunity to provide an excellent service for your customers – even if you’re not the one processing the orders.
Selecting Profitable Products To Sell Is Straightforward
For your general storefront, you will need to look at your passions in life and come up with a unique and viable online store idea. Use competitor sites as inspiration and identify a core demographic of customers who will buy your goods.
Make your customer segments detailed and collect insights from social media analysis sites, such as SEMrush, Google Trends, Amazon’s Keyword Tool, and other competitive analysis programs. These will help you calculate the size and spending power of your target audience.
Head to sites like eBay, Amazon, and Etsy and take a look at the sellers on this marketplace. Alongside your eCommerce site, you can also make a lot of money selling on marketplaces that bring in millions of visitors per day.
Find the products that interest you and take note of their titles, descriptive text, imagery, etc. Look for indicators of the types of products and brand messages that translate into good sales figures.
Choose a selection of around 10-20 products to start testing in your store and through social media advertising.
Unlock The Secrets Of Creating Online Buzz
Once you have a great-looking site and a range of products to sell, its time to start building traffic. Set up on Facebook and Instagram, as these offer paid ads that generate a lot of traffic to your new online store.
As well as offering you a chance to list your site, Facebook and Instagram also allow shoppers to buy directly from the platform. This is great for brands looking to test viable product options before committing them to their site.
Traditional content marketing will also help you build a core list of fans. Use your content to help solve your customer’s problems, as well as present your brand in a unique and personable way.
Create an email list that allows you a certain number of free signups before you will need to pay for hosting. You need to ensure that you are doing your best to boost your site’s organic and paid-for traffic.
Informative and entertaining email newsletters help build brand loyalty with existing customers, as well as provide social proof to those who have just happened to stumble across your site.
Review And Reevaluate Your Business Goals
When you’re starting to generate sales and noticing traffic, be ruthless about the products and advertisements that are not working. Track your posts through Google Analytics and test your headlines and images through an automated platform.
In some cases, you may just have to cut your losses and move onto a new product or ad campaign that brings in significant attention.
In planning your marketing budgets more efficiently, also consider the cost of acquisition and ensure that the lead price aligns with the profit margins you’re hoping to make through sales.
For instance, your t-shirt printing company may give you an outlet for your artistic talents. However, on the road to making $1 million, you would only have to sell 10,000 $100 items rather than 100,000 t-shirts at $10 each. Concentrate on two or three high-ticket items and sell these products hard.
Make An Exit Plan So You Can Repeat The Pattern
Sites like Exchange allow you to turn your online store into a business asset you can sell. In some cases, sales can go for twice the revenue the store generated over one or two years.
Set up a listing for your fully functioning store and be prepared to offer your buyer guidance and administrative support in the early stages.
With the profits generated, you could choose to invest and build up another e-commerce brand. Alternatively, use the money to invest in a new business venture or early retirement! Because as we know, money is not the goal, time is.
The barriers and costs of becoming a multinational seller are falling. Seek legal and financial advice before you start and you could be on the road to success through online selling.