Beginner’s Guide To Building An Online Store
It may be surprising to know, but there are literally thousands of e-commerce stores popping up on the web every month, if not every single week.
So it is incredibly vital to know what you are getting yourself into before you are four months in to an e-commerce store that is losing money, and you have no idea what to do.
This article won’t focus too much on this aspect; it will be more about finding good software, but a few things to know before you jump in are:
Have a plan; if you aren't ready to start a business online, or you won’t have the resources for another couple of months, do not spread yourself thin because that isn’t going to help you get ahead; it is only going to hurt your chances at success.
Be sure that your product supplier is reliable; you don’t want to receive your first big order only to learn that your supplier wasn’t ready for it.
Know your limits; there are commerce platforms out there that cost thousands in a given month to run your store, but start slow and don’t go for broke.
Which Platform to Use
For the absolute beginner I would recommend one of the following:
The Yahoo Small Business e-commerce web platform has a lot to offer a new user; it has all the amenities that you could want in an e-commerce platform. The software is great and amazingly affordable, but beware, if you use Yahoo, many users have complained about losing many hours trying to figure out how to use the software at first.
Something that you should know about ProStores is that they are an eBay company, which is nice, because it has a familiar look and feel, and is trusted. The only downfall with this is that you may end up with your website seeming very generic, so you will have to compensate with good advertising and great products. Their prices range from under $50 to just about $250, affordable for a startup.
Microsoft Small Business
What is really nice about this platform is that it is from a name that you can trust. Microsoft has been around for a really long time, so if you do decide to use this platform you know what the company you are getting involved in is like. The downside is that because they are an established name, they are completely willing to charge you a little extra for their services.
The Final Decision
When it comes down to it, you need to take a look around to decide what you can afford to build an online store. If you can afford top notch e-commerce stores, then go with the best package you can comfortably handle on your budget.
But realize that everyone had to start somewhere, and the absolute best way for you to get customers is not your website, or your online store, it will be your products and your service.
Your e-commerce platform is like the window in the front of the store, so use it to show off what you have to offer.