Do you want to start an online retail store in India? Find here a step-by-step guide on starting an online eCommerce store and start selling products online.
Today starting a small online store is not so difficult. E-commerce technology has improved a lot. It is far easy and simple to start an online store of your own and start selling. However, understanding the basics of eCommerce is a must if you are interested in entering into a small online store business.
According to a recent estimate, India’s eCommerce business is set to grow at 40% per annum. This is on the heels of the large-scale rollout of 5G broadband services, the National Broadband Plan, and the much-expected opening of the Retail sector. For a newcomer, it is better to start a small online store.
Here are a few things you must consider before starting a niche online store.
Table of Contents
10 Steps to Start an Online Retail Store/ Shop
1. Write a Business Plan
As in traditional business, an online store business needs a well-thought-out business plan. You must take some time and write down the important aspects of your business.
2. Choose Products
If you are already a manufacturer and want to sell online by creating your own store, you can skip this chapter. However, if you want to sell products of other companies, you need to do in-depth research on products that people are searching for online. Here tools like Google Adwords come in handy. You need to sign up for a Google Adwords account to use this tool.
3. Choose a Perfect Domain Name
Choosing a proper domain name is critical to the success of the online selling business. The domain you select must carry relevance with the products that you aim to sell.
4. Choose Online Store Builder
This is the most important aspect of starting an online retail store business. There are many options at present in India to create your own online store. Check our article on 10 Best eCommerce Platforms for Startups in India for Small Businesses to learn more.
5. Find a Suitable Theme
If you are a manufacturer of your own products and using WordPress + Woocommerce to create your online store, you need to select a theme that suits most of your products. If you are using readymade plug-and-play store platforms like Shopify, you will find plenty of themes to choose from.
6. Add Products
The next step after selecting your online store builder is time to add products. While uploading products, ensure the images are of good quality and optimized. The main things you need to add to a product are name, price, and category. If you selling physical products do mention the weight too.
7. Set Up Payment Gateway & Terms
There are several payment gateways in India at present. Check Top Payment Gateway Service Providers in India for Small Businesses to learn more. In addition to this, provide the buyer with the option of buying your product in more ways as possible. The most popular options are C.O.D. (cash on delivery), direct payment to the bank, and payment gateways using debit/ credit cards.
8. Set Shipping Terms
You can offer several shipping terms to your buyers. These are free delivery, flat rate, and customized rates for each product. Free return of products, if products are found defective, is a great way of providing confidence to buyers.
9. Make the Business Legally Compliant
If you are starting as a beginner on a less budget, registering your business as a sole proprietorship is the most popular choice. However, when your business grows, it is wise to convert it into LLP or Private Limited Company. Finally, you must have a GST number to carry out business operations.
10. Promote Your Online Store
Promotion is the key to success for an online store business as with any other online business. Create profiles on social media platforms like Facebook. Google Plus. Write viral posts to generate traffic to your online store. Set up a blog and write quality content relevant to your products.