eCommerce business has been rising for the last few years. During COVID-19 Pandemic when people work remotely eCommerce is the best mode of business today. Business owners with offline businesses are also migrating or adding an online shop to be competitive in the market. Following 15 key steps to start an eCommerce business can become your guide if you wonder how to start an eCommerce business.
1. Do Market Survey
Market surveys are important as they give you the right information about customers. Knowing about customers, market trends and competitors is crucial for planning a business model. The product line, features of the product, price range, target customers, and many important decisions depend on the market survey.
So, the market survey should be your first step to start an eCommerce business.
2. Find Target Customers
Based on the market survey you need to decide on target customers, know who are they, what are they, what is their needs and expectation, whom they buy it from, and so on. Detailed analysis about target customers at micro-level can provide better solutions and decision-making.
3. Know your Competitors
Know your competitors, their strengths and weaknesses. Analyze their strategies and gaps in the process.
4. Know the Problem You’re Solving
As you have understood your customers and competitors the next step is to know what problem customers have, what expectations are not being met by current service providers. Further, analyze and make plans how your product or service can solve this problem.
5. Find a Brand Name
The brand name is key for your business, it needs to be unique, and should represent your business model. Finding the right brand name can be the first step forward to putting your business idea into action.
6. Do Trademark Registration
Register your brand name. Without the registered trademark its not possible to build brand image among customers. Trademark provides enhanced protection against counterfeiters, cybersquatters, and importers of infringing products.
7. Find a Website or Domain Name
Some people have a brand name as a domain name but if you choose to keep a separate domain name then you need to find a unique domain name and register the same. Having short names like 3 to 4 letters is easy to remember by people but depending on availability and nature of the business there is no harm in bigger names. You need to ensure that the selected domain name is not a registered business name of anyone.
8. Make Your Website Live
9. Do Business Registration
Business registration is crucial for starting any business transaction. All legal documents must be prepared prior to launch and any transactions. Below are the lists of documents required to start a business in India:
- Certificate of incorporation.
- Digital Signature
- Company’s PAN card
10. Open a Business Bank Account
Open a business bank account that will be used for all business transactions. You may need to provide more documents for opening a new bank account like ID proofs, address proofs, personal PAN card, and board resolution.
11. Get a Payment Gateway
Getting a payment gateway from a renowned company is very crucial for the success of the business as you don’t want your payment or funds to get stuck when your business is operational. You need to check the charges, interest payment cycles, and all terms and conditions. Once you have acquired a payment gateway you need to integrate into your website ensuring the right payment mode for your target customer.
12. Plan and Setup Delivery Method
Planning a delivery is very important especially for new startups who can not afford to have their own delivery service. These businesses are dependent on 3rd party service providers like courier service. A clear understanding of delivery terms can make you operate your business efficiently.
13. Make Appearance on Social Media
Create business accounts on social media. Promote your business and let people know what special you have to offer.
14. Get Honest Feedback
Having honest feedbacks is base. You can get to know positive things about your service. At the same time, negative feedbacks give you an opportunity to improve drawback if any. Be open for it, check with your family, friends, and colleagues for their honest views.
15. Retain Your Customers and Increase Followers
No business can be successful without having loyal customers. It is important that you retain your existing customers and always plan to expand your customer group. Stay connected, provide offers, reward them whenever, it may keep your customers loyal.
Hope the above 15 steps to start an Ecommerce business can help you to venture your business plan. Please do write your feedback and suggestions in the below comment section.