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How can Small Businesses Start Their own eCommerce Store?

02 Mar 2020

The E-commerce industry has seen tremendous growth in a very short span of time. The growth is not just limited to big brands but small business owners are also taking advantage of this rapid change. 

Through the means of the internet, small businesses can reach global heights and scale their business limits up and smart use of advertising and business options can help you get much better responses. 

Strategies used by small businesses help them grow and expand. But it’s necessary to understand the techniques of creating growth plans. Below is the detailed information of two of the main techniques which are used by small business owners for starting their e-commerce stores.

1. Marketplaces – Online marketplaces and 3rd party platforms are widely used by sellers for their e-commerce store setups. Websites like Amazon or eBay allow sellers to list their products under different categories and sell to the buyers living far across their areas. 

Marketplaces like these help building brand awareness and overall market growth of the businesses. Amazon Marketplace’s gross revenue for 2017 was $239Billion and with more than a 50million customers this number is predicted to grow. Using the marketplace as a platform for its eCommerce sales and brand growth has tons of benefits. Many small businesses are relying on just the marketplaces for their future prospects.  

These stores are built on-premises that charges a commission fee on every item sold from the sellers. Amazon and eBay are big funded seller integrators who are working to provide the best products to their customers worldwide and small businesses can always take advantage of their ultimate goal. 

Making an Amazon or eBay account is absolutely free and sellers are only charged if they sell something. Anybody can open up a store on Amazon or eBay and can leverage their brand with the world-wide audience network these brands have. 

You just need to list the product, by writing a good title, make an intriguing product description, and add quality images to your product. This would not take more than 20minutes of your time and you can showcase your product to more than 150million people worldwide. 

Marketing is again a key aspect to power your e-commerce store on marketplaces. With 25000 sellers registering on the stores every day, it is difficult to target your potential customers organically. So, it is important to strategize your marketplace based advertising needs. 

Advertising on marketplaces works well when you have planned things in a correct manner. Amazon advertising works on and off the marketplaces. Traditionally Amazon and eBay used promotions and adverts to promote on their website only but with technology advancements, you can run and promote your product off the marketplaces as well. Amazon has recently launched its Demand Side Platform and through that, you can programmatically run your marketplace product campaigns to marketplaces, amazon acquired websites like IMDB, fire tv stick and thousands of partnered websites. Traffic on all of those networks will be directed to your marketplace page and you can enjoy some gigabytes of store traffic without actually buying any ad server. 

There are a ton of seller provider networks available to choose that has the expertise to grow your seller account on these marketplaces. SPNs work and deliver you all types of requirements from account creation to product listings and ad management. They work with high flexibility and in a way that gives you the utmost control over your seller central so that you can just focus on your growth and keeping all the operational parts aside.

2. E-commerce development platforms – Small businesses have largely counted on e-commerce website development platforms like Magento, Shopify, WordPress which helps them create an eCommerce website from the very scratch without having any CSS, HTML, PHP knowledge. 

These platform takes your cybersecurity and SEO into consideration which would help you create a secure and SEO friendly and dynamic website. 

Using these creators helps when you want to create your brand name and want to have the highest flexibility over your website. The hosts give you the luxury to choose a template for your website where-in you can set-up and customize your products. Choosing this technique for your e-commerce store creation would not limit your expansions as you can choose what additional features you want to add on your website. Unlike the marketplace stores, you can change your system settings according to your convenience through this approach. 

Using this method would consume some time and money out of you but the options it provides are worth working and investing. It also looks good on the goodwill part, as when you are selling your products on your own website, it gives you a great brand reach. Creating your eCommerce website is easy because of the technological advancements, but marketing and promoting the products on your e-commerce stores is not as easy as it seems.

Marketplace gives you the luxury to sell the product across different parts of the country without a lot of marketing efforts because of the audience network they have but advertising and managing the products through your own website will be a daunting task.  

You have to carefully choose and use your advertising options where it is social media or search media and need to make sure that you target the right audience for your growth. Marketing and promoting your products on your own website is a challenging task but once you grow the correct size of the audience, nothing would limit your growth exploitation. 

An eCommerce website helps you get closer to your visitors, you can take their data for email and content marketing which would help your brand to grow future, these services are not available when you are running a marketplace store. You can also track the type of audience and visitors your page has and improvements can be done basis to that. Remarketing and Dynamic ads can be shown to your visitors to retarget the users who bounced off your website without actually making a purchase. 

This platform would let you control your visitors and let you optimize your content according to what is best for your website.

A proper delivery and payment channels need to be attached when you are using for own website, which would ensure that your customers get their purchases on time and you are ensured about your cash inflows.

To sum up, 

Marketplaces can help your e-commerce store grow at the initial stage, using platforms like Amazon or eBay can help you grow and reach a million people because of the audience network it holds, but staying just with the marketplaces would limit your prospects and would confine control over the reach. But, setting up a website should be supported by a lot of marketing inputs, otherwise, it would just be a website on the internet. 

It is considered the best when you are simultaneously running your marketplace store with your website, In order to get the best result and growth, you need to take advantage of all the options available.

If you imagine it, Jola Interactive can design it. Contact us today and learn how our eCommerce website development services can take your business to the next level.