Starting up your own online business may seem like an overwhelming task. It doesn't have to be. This beginner's guide is all you need to start your e-commerce business in India in 2022.
The e-commerce business industry has seen explosive growth in the recent decade. People have grown more accustomed to shopping online from the comfort of their homes. The E-commerce industry has completely revolutionised the way people engage in buying things.
This shift in buying culture has affected the thought process of traditional store owners. Following in the footsteps of the likes of Amazon and Flipkart, they too have started to go online.
The rapid changes in the market have made Ecommerce a very profitable industry. This is the best time to become part of the industry.
This short guide will help you to start your own e-commerce business in India. You will find all the information you need in a short and crisp manner. So without further ado, let's dive in.
Table Of Contents:-
- Get your business registered
- Set up an online store
- Set up marketing strategies
- Customer care
Research is an important aspect of starting any business. You will need to figure out the proper location and the right demographics to target. Based on this initial analysis, you will then have to figure out the business that will be most suitable for you. And create a proper strategy for it.
There are two business models you can choose from. These are a single-vendor marketplace and a multi-vendor marketplace.
The single-vendor marketplace is an online store. It is for people who like to work alone i.e. without any other vendor. The buyer and the seller are the only two concerned parties. This reduces the cost of operations and provides more control over the inventory. It does come with its cons and one of its major cons is that there is not a huge variety of products for the customers.
The multi-vendor marketplace is where many vendors work together and sell their products. This results in higher profit as compared to the single-vendor marketplace. You can choose to sell your product yourself and allow others to sell their goods on your website as well.
After your research, you can then create a roadmap for your future endeavours. A good business plan will help you reach tons of customers and help you take the right actions. Remember, if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.
2. Get your business registered
After you have selected the best model for your business, it is time to get your business registered.
You have to first give a name to your e-commerce store. A good name can have a huge impact on your business. Pick a name that is catchy and easy to remember. You can choose online business name generators like Shopify, Oberlo, etc. to come up with the name. You will also have to pick an appropriate domain name for your website before registering it.
You will then have to design a logo for your business. You don't have to get too technical about the logo. The logo should be simple and be able to convey the theme or motto of your business. People often complicate things too much when it comes to an appropriate logo design. You can choose to create your logo through websites like Logo Maker and Canva. You may also choose to hire a professional designer.
You will have to get a GST number to run your business. A TIN (Tax Identification Number) number is also necessary for registration. Make sure you get all the licenses and permissions covered.
3. Set up an online store
To set up an online store, you will need to create a website. Your website will be what your customers interact with when buying from you. Your website will be doing all the necessary hard work for you. This means that your website has to be handy and easy to navigate.
You can either hire a professional to build the website for you or you can do it yourself. Make sure that when you hire a professional that you don't have to depend on them after they have set up your website. You should be able to edit your website and control the inventory of your store.
You will also have to set up proper online payment methods for your customers. To run an e-commerce store, you will have to set up payment options. These include credit/debit cards, E-wallets, net banking, UPI payment, and cash payment. A proper channel for payments can be a huge factor in the success of your business.
You can also use various platforms available online to set up the store yourself. Some popular platforms that are easy to use are Shopify, Magneto, Squarespace, and Wix.
It is one of the most popular platforms available online and is very easy to use for a beginner. It offers a wide range of customizable themes for your requirements. There are over 3.6 million stores that are set up through Shopify.
If you are tech-savvy, you can opt for Magneto. It offers complete control over your online store. You can take advantage of all the features available and customize your site for your needs. It is free to download and offers the most features of any open-source solution on the market.
It has some great templates and offers a lot of flexibility when it comes to designing your website. You can control the placement of texts, images, and graphics on the website. The only downside of Squarespace is that it doesn't let you sell in more than one currency.
Wix is a cloud-based platform and comes with various features. It offers a lot of customization to the users. It offers a free version as well as a paid version to the users. You get tons of features with the free version as well as with the paid ones.
4. Set up marketing strategies:-
You will now need some proper marketing techniques. These will result in higher traffic and more people buying from your store. There are various marketing techniques you will need for your online business. Some of the important techniques are SEO, social media marketing, and email marketing.
Search Engine Optimisation is what brings your website to the top of the search result. It helps your website to rank at the top of the search results in Google. SEO is an essential strategy for the visibility of your website on Google. This increases the number of visitors to your store.
2) Social media marketing:-
Almost every one of your users will have a social media account. It is an important strategy to target social media channels and market your website. Social media platforms will result in more people clicking on your website's link. A good social media marketing campaign will result in a huge sales margin.
3) Email marketing:-
This is another platform that you can use to market your business. An email is a powerful tool. You can get insights into user behaviour and target the users with your better services. Email marketing builds relationships with existing users. It can also bring in some new customers.
5. Logistics Partner:-
It is very important to choose the right logistics partner for your business. The logistics partner handles the delivery of products to customers. Thus it is very important to take your time when picking the right partner.
Your logistics partner should be reliable. You have to check their reputation and what people are saying about their services. A logistics partner from a reputable firm will be able to adhere to your company's standards. When picking the right partner, you have to consider the following key points:-
a) Freight Management:-
It is the use of technology, human resources, and knowledge. Combined, it results in effective and efficient coordination between carriers and suppliers. This ensures that the goods get delivered within budget and on time.
You should opt for a logistics partner who is using the latest technology. They will be able to find solutions and provide a better service.
The ideal logistics partner is someone who will stay with you for a long time. They will grow with you and be able to meet the demands of your growing business.
6. Customer Service:-
It is important to have good communication with your logistics partner. They should provide you with proper customer service. They should also be mindful of their duties as it is your company whose reputation is at stake.
We have shown you all the tools and knowledge you will need before starting your business. It may get overwhelming to start your own e-commerce business at first. You may follow this guide to set up your business.
There are some major benefits of e-commerce business to the traditional brick-and-mortar one. It has a higher reach, more profit, low investment, and ease of business.
For any further queries, you can comment below or write to us.