How To Start A Small Online Business – 7 Steps

How To Start A Small Online Business

With the impact of Covid-19, the offline sales channel seems to be losing its appeal, and the online one has become more attractive. Although an online business currently has excellent potential, applying this business model can be pretty tricky for those approaching it for the first time. You are having a similar problem? Scroll down to learn how to start a small online business!

how to start an online small business

Why Choose Online Channel For Your Business?

1. Wide customer reach

Once you have an online store, it will be placed on popular platforms like Google. That’s why customer accessibility is one of eCommerce’s biggest and most important strengths. Once you know how to start your own small online business and make a good enough SEO strategy, you can reach tens of thousands (or even hundreds of thousands) of potential customers every day. This number is more extensive than any crowded neighborhood in America!

Besides search engines, you can also find your buyers through social media. You can share your eCommerce site on those social sites and then reach new consumers through ads, KOLs, etc.

2. Open 24/7

Closing time is unnecessary for an online store because you do not need staff to look after the store. The customer ordering and payment process are fully automated. All you need to do is check the orders, send them to the customer and get the money back.

In addition, inventory activities are not necessary since the management feature of the website will automatically do it for you. You can quickly know the number of sold goods and the remaining goods with a single glance.

how to start your own small online business

3. Easy technology integration

There are more and more extensions to support online business activities that are highly applicable and reasonably priced. For example, tools help diversify payment gateways, stimulate sales, support sending mail, etc. 

Innovative technology also helps websites’ performance become more and more outstanding, even bringing experiences as close as possible to native apps.

4. Rapid growth

Ultimately, the growth potential of eCommerce remains vast. Due to many reasons, customers are shifting to online shopping, plus further rocketing the share of this commerce model.

According to research, eCommerce has a growth rate of up to 14.2% in 2021. This number can grow even more prominent in the future when there are no more risks in online purchasing and cashless payments completely replace cash ones.

What Can You Earn With A Small Business?

A stable source of income

Increasing income is the primary goal of most start-up owners. If you are too, then here is good news for you: eCommerce store can generate a highly stable amount of revenue after a period of operation.

According to studies, in three months, an average eCommerce website can generate more than $150,000 in monthly revenue.

A business that has run for three years can earn up to $1 million monthly, 230% more than the first year. Such an extremely desirable number. However, to get this figure, you must know how to start an online small business and expand it.

how to start a small online retail business

A quality customer data file

People often think huge revenue is the only thing an online business can bring. But that is not the case.

Besides the financial benefits, you can also get a list of quality customer data. Thanks to the development of online technology, you can use the data for remarketing purposes.

And when your business is big enough and you decide to expand your business line, you can reduce development time by communicating to the customers on this data file.

A large amount of knowledge and experience

Running an online business will gradually help expand your knowledge and experience.

Starting an online store will help you understand administration, business operations, supply chain, or even website technology.

Whether your business is successful or not, this knowledge will be advantageous to you later. If you intend to expand your business or start over, the starting time will certainly be shortened a lot.

How To Start A Small Online Business Successfully

Opening an online store is quite challenging if you have never had business experience. If you’re having the same problem, don’t worry! Here’s the answer for those who are wondering how to start a small online business.

1. Find a big enough niche market

The first thing you need is to find the right niche market. Although the growth potential of eCommerce is high, there are already numerous retailers here. Therefore, if you want to place a foot in the market, you should be different.

Nowadays, finding a huge niche can be quite challenging. What to do is to find a few moderate-sized markets to create a premise for later development.

find niche market

2. Conduct market research

Once you’ve completed your niche selection, it’s time for market research. This is a critical step that determines the success of the business. The research results are the foundation that defines how to start a small online business

First, check the SERPs, thereby finding out which products people are most interested in and when they want them the most. From the results of this research, decide on a product category.

Next, research your competitors. Find out how many direct competitors and indirect competitors are in the market. Remember to pay attention to the general price level. This will help you quickly decide the product cost later. 

3. Identify target customers

Sit back, think and draw a portrait of the target. Try to imagine as realistically as possible.

To have the most practical and detailed customer portrait, you should fully list demographic factors such as age, gender, income, job, marital status, etc. Next, list psychological factors such as beliefs, desires, interests, life pressures, etc.

A complete customer portrait will help you a lot, don’t be afraid to spend time and effort painting it.

4. Looking for product sources

Now that you’ve got a list of potential items, it’s time to find them. Try to find at least five suppliers for each item, learn about their policies, and based on that, prioritize each supplier. This will help you choose the best supplier in the market. Moreover, your cooperation will be less risky since you always have a second choice.

Here are some little tips on starting a small online business for you: order as many items as possible on the first import. This variety will help you test the product’s potential and find the best seller on the first sale.

5. Build your brand identity

Brand identity is what helps customers identify you. It will stay in the customer’s mind every time they think of you. Try to design it so that customers can’t mistake you for any other brand.

Also, develop your brand image based on the target customer portrait you created in step three.

For example, your customer is male and your product is an energy drink, your brand should have a robust, masculine, and assertive voice. On the other hand, if your target customer is a woman, a student, and is away from home for the first time, the brand’s voice should be caring, gentle, and understanding.

build brand identity

6. Develop your website

This is the most crucial important but hard-to-be-done in the 7 steps to starting a small online business.  

If in the face-to-face business environment, the store is your brand face that determines whether customers visit and buy from your goods not, then the website is the decisive factor in the online environment.

Specifically, a website that is beautiful, suitable for users’ preferences, high-speed, and error-free will have a higher conversion rate than a website without the above characteristics. Therefore, don’t be afraid to invest in your website. There’s no answer to questions like “how to start a small business online with no money and effort”. If you have no technical knowledge, hiring a web development agency is the best choice.

There are too many web design companies so you might wonder who is your suitable companion, consider Tigren. We have all the ingredients that make a great companion:

  • We have 10 years of experience providing online technology solutions
  • Our team of developers and customer care are highly dedicated and skilled.
  • We have developed an optimized workflow that minimizes the time and cost of your website.
e-commerce website development for business

#7. Make a marketing plan

Here’s the last step: Design a marketing plan for promoting the product to the target customer. You can’t just sit back and wait for customers to come. Find a way to bring them to you.

There are many ways to find customers, but currently, there are three most popular and effective ways: blogging, driving traffic from social media, and email marketing. That’s how to open a small online business and reach lots of customers.

Bottom Line

Ecommerce has been a hot trend in recent years. This is understandable when it can bring hundreds of benefits to its owners while the initial capital is not high. However, to really achieve success in this area, you need to have a clear and specific starting plan.

Above is all information about “How To Start A Small Online Business?”. We hope it helps. Thanks for reading!

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