It is very simple to set up and build an online store. I have seen many people and more importantly, websites that ask you for money in return for a guide on how to build online stores or ecommerce businesses. Do not fall for such websites. Let me explain to you in simple words as to how you can easily set up and build an online store complete with shopping carts and a complete inventory of products just for your shop in a couple of really simple steps and guess what, it is for free. You will get whatever you get from some of those websites that claim to tell you how you can make your online store successful except that this is for free. Just make sure that you follow the steps carefully.
Ok, before we begin with this discussion, let me briefly explain to you how this process works and what it really means to start an online shop and what all the steps that I am going to list below mean and how the process really works. It is simple. There is much demand among people who shop regularly on the internet for certain products that they really want. This, in economic terms, is called as demand. For certain niches, such as the “personal computer” niche, there are many suppliers who are selling those products either on their online stores/shops or the manufacturers (such as Dell, HP, Toshiba, Acer etc.) themselves on their websites. For other niches, where there is a lot of demand but not as much as in the PC industry, there are lesser suppliers who are selling products that are hand-to-hand with what the customers really want. So, this is where you and your online shop fit into the picture. By selling products that are potentially big earners for your shop and those that have not yet been recognized as potential niches by your competitors, you are having an upper hand over your competition. So once you have set up a website in the niche, you start marketing it by selling products and then making a profit on your sales. Since you are not manufacturing anything, the expense of building an online store is practically nil. Okay, now for the steps.
First up, you will have to make sure that you have the right interface on your blog. If you have had any experience with web designing, you will realize that this is almost the same as templates that you use for your website. The only difference is that in this case, it is more than just for aesthetic purposes and it is also for things like shopping carts, affiliation with courier companies such as FedEx, DHL, usage of accounting systems and many other features that are imperative for the success of your online shop. There are many such interfaces you can choose from. There are some paid ones and free ones. Make sure that you also check out the free ones such as Cafepress. Now, among the paid ones, there are different types. There are some that require you to pay a monthly fee for their services and there are some that give it to you for a fixed onetime fee. Just make sure you check each of them properly and read a review of it at the very bottom of this article.
Though Cafe Press is a good free service, it lacks in some important features that are very much essential for building an online store. This is where some of the other interfaces come into picture. There are websites such as eBay’s Prostores which is an excellent ecommerce solution from eBay, the giant of all online stores. Prostores is a pretty good website because it comes with a nice package consisting of a very good customer service along with features like inventory management and things like accounting software that can prove to be very useful for your online store in the long run.
Another useful ecommerce solution that can be used and that I use a lot is Vendio. It is a very nice ecommerce site which you can very easily use to build an online store. It does take a bit more time to set up and open your online shop because there are more details that the vendio software wants to know. It costs a bit of money. But guess what, with the kind of services you get with it, you won’t be disappointed. Another useful ecommerce website that you could consider using would be software like FlyingCart or 3dCart etc. Though I have bothered to use any other ecommerce site other than Prostores or vendio to build online stores, I have heard from other people that websites like Veracart, 3DCart, Flyingcart, BigCommerce are really good contenders for opening an online shop. I will just summarize what facilities you will get as an overall measure from these websites. If you choose to ship your own inventory, you get to ship with FedEx and you get a really really cool accounting system which I personally, like a lot.
This is basically all the information you need to build an online store. One big advantage of all these websites is that you do not have to download any software whatsoever. You do everything directly on the website itself. This makes it easier since there is no hassle with respect to OS compatibility or any such compatibility issues. Now that you know how to select an interface for your newly opened online shop, if you do not already have inventory to sell as products on your online store. When I started out, I did not already have an inventory to sell on your online shop. But that is no problem. You may ot want to refer to my other article on how to find products to sell online. That has some very useful information regarding where on the internet you can find products to sell on your ecommerce store. Just use the information listed in this article and the other article and you should have absolutely no problems building a very good online store.