eCommerce Platforms Web Design

Using eCommerce Platforms To Start Your Online Business

The internet has given the world many benefits and one of the most significant is to make it easier for anyone wanting to start their own eCommerce business to do so.

Just 30 years ago, if you wanted to start a business selling physical products your only option was to acquire premises, purchase stock, pay for advertising, employ staff, and then open the doors hoping to turn a profit. Often this could take months or even years to achieve. Unfortunately, in many cases the returns proved insufficient to cover the large outlay already invested and the business folded.

With eCommerce today, the risks and upfront investment required are minimal compared to what was previously required and incredibly the time taken to get started can be as little as 24 hours.

Firstly, there is no need for premises or at least physical ones. With eCommerce, your store is hosted online on platforms that cost just a few dollars per month. Some of these even offer free trials when you start so your first month costs you nothing.

Platforms such as Shopify and WooCommerce are more than just places to host your business. They give you a range of functions and applications which help you to run, organise and analyse your eCommerce business from day one.

One of the most important advantages an eCommerce platform gives you, is the ability to take payments by credit or debit card without the need to have your own merchant account. Setting up a merchant account can be troublesome, especially if you are a new business. This headache is removed by using the merchant facilities an eCommerce platform already has in place.

Another advantage of using an eCommerce platform is that all your products can be displayed and categorised by type, niche or category so that your customer can easily browse through your store. Each product will normally have its own page where you can enhance its appeal using high-quality images and an effective description which sells the product.

Your products do not even have to be purchased in advance by you or stored in costly warehouses. The increasing number of companies who will dropship products for you directly to your customers means you never need to pay for a product in advance ever again. Your customers simply buy from your web store and pay for the product. You then pay your dropshipper and arrange delivery to your customer with them. The difference in price is your profit.

A further benefit of running a business on an eCommerce platform is the use of applications which either make your business easier to run or increase your profits. Examples of these are reminders sent to customers who have abandoned their shopping cart, the ability to email existing customers about new offers and promotions or apps which produce branded receipts to help build customer loyalty.

Finally, with an eCommerce platform you have a wide range of data and reports which assist with understanding how well your business is running. They can highlight products that are performing well or poorly, generate spreadsheets for accounting purposes, and even allow you to see where you could increase profit margins within your eCommerce business.