Since the digitalization, everyone is looking forward to utilizing it in their respective fields. Similarly, the retail business has adopted technological advancement wisely. Almost all the big retailers have already shifted to the online platform setting up an e-commerce business, and the remaining are planning to.
Apart from already existing retailers who have moved their business to an online platform, many new companies are started online. It is because people are more convenient shopping through the internet. They do not need to move around physical stores to cope with their need.
If you are one of those, who have plans to start their online business and set up an e-commerce store. However, due to financial instability, you have never discussed your plans with anyone and are demotivated. Then there is no need to worry anymore. I’ll provide you a complete guide on how you can start your store online without spending money.
1. Research E-commerce Business
When you have decided you are going to start an e-commerce store, firstly you will need to understand what it is, what it offers, and how it runs. You must be well aware of the e-commerce business model to incorporate it to your ideas and get benefits.
You will have an idea that without initial investment, it is best to develop a B2C model targeting customers to fulfill their requirements. You may also look for the B2B model, but it will require an abundant supply of your product or services, and you might need a complete team for it. However, to offer your services to customers, you do not require any external resources.
2. Decide What Will You Sell
I’ve seen many e-commerce businesses failing just because they have not decided what they will sell. They seem to sell products of different niches. You need to realize that, initially you should stick with any one product that you offer best in the market. It will help people to know what you actually provide.
If you provide several services and products, people will get confused about what to buy, and it will also be difficult for you to manage so many products without money.
“Deciding your product for your e-commerce business is just like determining your career in studies. You need to focus at one point rather than trying to master all skills.” Mrs. Joe Wilson – Career Counselor at CrowdWriter
a. Check For The Need
To increase the value of your product, make sure that people need it. It is not necessary that you should target all of the people. You may focus on a particular group of people. Based on your expertise, you can target people who love tourism, students, or art lovers. Search for different niches and decide whom will you offer your services. Once you are done selecting a particular group, research what is their need. For example, if you are focusing students for your services, check if they need career counseling, writing assistance, or any other help.
b. Sell Your Skills
You can provide self-produced products like wooden tables, chairs, and other home decors. You may also provide travel guide, assignment writing assistance, and 40 more business products. The best product to sell is what you are best capable of producing yourself. If you are well aware of travel destination in your town and can manage events, you must provide them travel assistance. If you are best at helping students, you may open a career counseling and writing assistance store.
c. Be A Middle Man
You have another option, which is to be a supplier. You will need to talk to vendors, put their products on your online store, get an order, and supply it to your customers. Initially, you will have to pick it yourself from the vendors and provide it to customers. Later you will build your team.
3. Choose The Correct Platform To Build Your Website
Be very careful while selecting a platform to develop your website. It will affect your business very much. I will recommend you to use WordPress as it one of the most popular website builders and almost 33% of business websites are using it. I’m talking about WordPress.org as all the features are free with it. It is more compatible then WordPress.com. You can quickly build your website here without spending any money. The main features of WordPress.org are,
- Responsive Pages
- Social Media Integration
- Auto Update
- Customized Themes
- Numerous Widgets
- SEO Optimization
4. Give Your Store An Appealing Name
Selecting a suitable name is very crucial as it will be your identity. Choose the title based on your product and services. Your name should reflect your products. It will help people to get an idea of your product through your store’s name.
Many customers will be attracted by your name, and when they start spending time on your site, they will make a purchase. You can try several name generators on the internet for an idea.
5. Market Your Business Smartly
Thanks to digital marketing that has overcome the traditional marketing era. Now you do not need to spend a lot of money with the old methods of marketing. You, on your own, can market your e-commerce store through different channels and platforms.
a. Social Media Marketing
According to Statista, social media has around 2.77 billion users. Think of how big is this market. Using the trending features like Instagram stories, Facebook business pages, you can market your e-commerce store. It will take time to grow your organic reach, but it works.
b. Email Marketing
The basic for email marketing is getting the emails of your potential buyers. Create an opt-in list and different forms on social media platforms to get the emails. Once you have a list of emails, start your marketing through it.
- Use a signature in your email that describes your e-commerce store.
- Focus on the subject area
- Personalize your email.
- Keep them short.
c. Content Marketing
Content is the key to your success. You need to cope with the trending content first approach. Be dynamic with your content. Use visuals to describe your business and attract more people. Give some personal touch to your content, adding your experience, and behind the scenes story to your social media platforms.
d. Affiliate Marketing
For an e-commerce store, affiliate marketing will work for you more. You will need to pay the referrers only when the buyer purchases the product using their referral link. Get connected with some skilled affiliate marketers and pay them their sales commission once you get money from the buyers.
6. Optimize Search Engine
SEO is very essential to grow your online business. Google has made it a bit difficult to boost the SEO of your website. However, it has also provided the developers with some amazing tools that can help you to grow your site high on google search engine.
- Use Google Keyword Planner to analyze the trending keywords. Look for long tail keywords and use them in your marketing content and website landing pages.
- Google PageSpeed Insight will analyze the performance of your website.
- Google Analytics will let you know the complete insight of your website. What keywords do people use to reach your site? Your website’s daily visits and other characteristics can be analyzed easily.
- Apart from these, there are more software like Moz Local Listing, Yoast SEO, Schema Creator that enables you to boost your search engine optimization.
7. Utilize FOMO To Boost Your Conversions
People are more attracted to the things which they think will not be reachable after some time. This is because of FOMO. It is a psychology term which means fear of missing out. You can utilize it to increase your conversion rate. Use phrases like 24 Hour Sale, Only One Product Left, etc. This will create scarcity and will build anxiety among the people to buy your product as soon as possible.
Author Bio: Amanda Jerelyn is a travel lover and is interested in arts and music. Professionally, she is working as a marketing executive at AcademistHelp. Amanda also owns a website Guide2Write, where she guides students regarding referencing.