E-commerce industry is the new normal and popular way of doing business in the present age. If the aim of one’s business is to grow and expand then it is necessary to operate and promote business online so as to get noticed and connect with the audience world wide.
If we look at our own lifestyle we will get to know that from listening to music, watching series and movies, or online shopping is all happening under the ecommerce roof.
In contemporary day and age, consumers demand ease and convenience in trade and transaction. Consequently it’s the most reliable business option for aspiring entrepreneurs to start their own enterprise. It costs much less to start an online business than a traditional one where the entrepreneur does not need to have a physical space or interaction.
“We will continue to see a convergence of the digital and physical world. Those who conquer that trend will be market leaders.” – John Philips (Senior vice president of customer supply chain and logistics for Pepsico. Inc)
According to the 2017-18 economic survey, the Indian ecommerce market was estimated at 33 Billion Dollars and has been growing at a tremendous rate since then.
So Here is a step wise guide on how to start your own Ecommerce Business:
1. Prepare a business model
The promoter should comprehensively explore the market of the product in which they want to trade. Competitors’ approach should be observed and a different and more authentic approach should be proposed. Prudential analysis on consumer tendency must be examined. And a business model should be prepared according to the conclusion of the study. Feasible sources of supply ought to be chosen for the business.
Then a promotional strategy should be prepared on the basis of market research. The entrepreneur has to focus on creating a competent and functional administration so that once the business is launched, the consumer does not fluster with the management.
2. Create a brand
Once you are convinced with your business model, you will have to choose a name and prepare a logo for your company. A company name should be short and easy to remember and should also be innovative and classy. Remember that the name and logo will create an image of the company in people’s mind so it should be adopted carefully.
3. E-commerce platform & website
Setting up an ecommerce website is the most critical step in starting up your ecommerce business. The website has to be attractive, less complex, and impactful. A website creates a cogent impression in the minds of the audience which works as a steady marketing merchandiser. One can either hire a professional or charter to a pre-designed website. When a website is to be prepared entirely new, according to the entrepreneur’s vision, it could be attainable by hiring a professional. In a pre-designed website maker, the entrepreneur can choose from multiple templates and designs which saves a relevant piece of time, effort, and money. Most entrepreneurs prefer building a website square and fresh with professional help to make the website look more exclusive and original. A website is required to manifest pages which will lead the audience from the introduction to the sale of the product (from About to Payment Gateway). Along with that, a customer support based website builds customer satisfaction and loyalty. This website should be regularly managed by the entrepreneur, or he can also hire a professional to do so.
4. Delivery Process
When a customer orders the product, the packing and shipment have to be arranged. And that can be done by the promoter on its own when the business has just been started by fetching a courier facility or else can outsource a logistics company who will deliver the product for the promoter. Giant ecommerce companies outsource logistic companies for their deliveries. It also saves time and effort by making the logistic process more prompt and organised. However during initial times, the entrepreneur may not have enough resources to reserve an outsourcing facility thus many entrepreneurs chose to deliver the product by themselves.
Any company should be legally registered to possess legitimacy. The above steps should be structured and arranged preliminarily whence the business is registered, the company can launch and start its operation right off.
The promoter of the company has to apply for DIN (Director’s Identification Number) and PAN (Permanent Account Number).The company will have to register under an entity based on various options. It will be registered depending upon the promoters and operations of the company. For instance, if the company is promoted and managed by a single person then, it can be registered under Sole proprietorship, if there are partners, then they can register under Limited liability partnership (LLP). Other than that, Private limited company is one of the most preferred form of entity, if the business wants to expand and have more members in future. And Public limited company for large businesses who wish to raise capital from the general public. Once your DIN and PAN is approved and received, the company should get registered under ROC (Registrar of Companies) and Incorporate the company. The company should also get GST certification to authorise the Payment Gateway. The logo and name should be trademark registered to avoid fraudulent impressions.
Once they are done with the legal formalities, the promoter can publish its website and start its business operation.
6. Promotion & Marketing
“Stopping advertising to save money is like stopping your watch to save time” – Henry Ford (Founder of the Ford Motor Company)
Promotion and Marketing is the most eminent factor to foster any business. Promotion will be critical for any startup to notify the audience about the emergence of a new brand. Online marketing and management is the most contemporary form of marketing in the modern age. The business can be promoted on various social media platforms and directed to the ecommerce website. And also applying SEO (Search engine optimization) keywords in the website to help create more traffic on the website. Marketing will help the spectators remember your brand and create a corporate identity.
In a nutshell, setting up an ecommerce business may not be any complicated or troublesome, if you have the right guidance and determination. In the current scenario, online business will be the most opt proposition for a startup and a tremendous opportunity to flourish in the commercial market.