Starting An eCommerce Business? Here Are The Key Steps To Follow

eCommerce Business where online shopping is happening.

By 2025, the online business is expected to account for 24.5% of worldwide retail, and global eCommerce sales are expected to reach about $7.3 trillion. Brick-and-mortar stores that have temporarily closed their doors due to the pandemic may never reopen. Therefore, there has never been a better time to launch an online store.

However, getting eCommerce businesses off the ground takes a lot of effort. To take the essential steps to start an eCommerce business to put your concept out there, you must have business acumen, creativity, and discipline.

So if you are looking for a guide on how to start an eCommerce business, you are in the right place. This guide will provide a step-by-step process to ensure you launch a successful business.

Step 1: Research and outline your eCommerce business model

It is critical to have a solid eCommerce business plan in place when launching an eCommerce business online. Your business strategy influences how you will attract and keep consumers, stand out in the marketplace – and how customers will obtain your products.

An e-commerce business model is the conceptual framework of your new online store to reach customers and increase revenues.

Several e-commerce business models allow various types of enterprises to position themselves effectively in the market and reach their clients.

Finding the best eCommerce company strategy involves two steps. The first layer dictates how you’re going to set up your company — it defines who you’re selling to and how you will position your own products.

Then comes determining your real e-commerce business strategy – how your company intends to discover and acquire potential customers and how they will engage with your product or services.

Step 2: Determine your target market and come up with a business plan

After you’ve laid the groundwork for your own online store, you’re ready to create your own eCommerce store plan.

This written document outlines your financial, operational, and marketing strategy. It helps to organize your strategies and to attract possible investors.

Conduct research to learn about your products or services, present competitors, eCommerce business industry, and customer base.

Decide on your target audience and how you intend to sell to them. Plan the logistics for the coming months, including when, where, and how you will proceed.

Step 3: Choose a business name and build your brand

Your business will then require a name and a brand identity. The brand name is crucial for people who are beginning white-label eCommerce stores.

Choosing a name may be enjoyable, but it also needs some strategic consideration.

You’ll want to verify if the web domain, social media handles, and legal name are accessible, in addition to a distinctive yet simple name that properly defines your product.

Make sure it communicates effectively across cultures, especially if you desire to expand worldwide.

Step 4: Register your business

Once you’ve decided on a business name, check the websites of your local secretary of state and the United States Patent and Trademark Office to see whether it’s available.

You must select your legal structure specific to your business niche—typically, you can choose from a general partnership, LLC, corporation, or sole proprietorship.

Consult with a legal professional to help you make the best decision for your company.

After that, you can file for an EIN (Employer Identification Number). The IRS website lets you register for this business tax ID free. This nine-digit number helps you to separate your personal and business finances.

Upon receiving your EIN, determine what other business licenses and permits you will require to sell online in your city and state. However, if you file a DBA (“doing business as”), you will not need to register your business with your state if it is a general partnership or sole proprietorship.

Because many e-commerce businesses operate from home, they do not require as many licenses as a brick-and-mortar business. Still, you may need a home occupancy permit stating that your company does not contribute to traffic or noise to be able to sell products online.

Your state, industry, and business type will have different business registration criteria.

Step 5: Create your eCommerce business website

After signing the paperwork and formally registering your eCommerce store, the next step is to construct an eCommerce website.

The website serves as your company’s “storefront,” where customers may come to browse and add things to their shopping carts. Your company’s website and its functioning are essential to its success.

To begin, you’ll need a domain name similar to your company name. Then, for developing and running your own eCommerce business, you’ll choose an eCommerce platform that fits your bandwidth.

The two most frequent types are easy to set up your business website (such as Shopify) and open-source platforms (such as Magento), on which you will execute business operations such as inventory management, order fulfillment, and more.

Step 6: Source your products

After you’ve created a website prototype, you can start adding product names, descriptions, and images.

You’ll also need to get your products, whether you produce them yourself or buy them from a wholesaler.

After that, you’ll need to plan logistics like branded packaging, warehousing, inventory management, and shipping costs.

You can also outsource your order fulfillment to companies such as Rakuten eCommerce fulfillment services to ensure customer purchases are delivered on time.

Step 7: Launch your eCommerce store.

Once your new business has been successfully launched, you can begin tracking your metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) as it expands.

Experiment with various digital marketing methods to generate visitors to your brand and have a successful eCommerce business.

Among inventory management, logistics, and marketing strategies, you’ll want to ensure that shipment and fulfillment move as easy as possible for each customer.

Prepare contingency plans in case something goes wrong.

Step 8: Market your products online

For marketing your products, you have numerous online advertising possibilities. Most people use search engines when shopping online.

Social media channels, search engine optimization, email campaigns, Facebook ads, Google Ads, Instagram, etc., are great e-commerce platforms for selling products online.

There are already many merchants selling the same products. Ensure you have USPs (Unique Selling Points) to attract clients’ attention.

About Carson Derrow

My name is Carson Derrow I'm an entrepreneur, professional blogger, and marketer from Arkansas. I've been writing for startups and small businesses since 2012. I share the latest business news, tools, resources, and marketing tips to help startups and small businesses to grow their business.