How to Start an Online Store

guide_featured_photo

Table of contents

  1. Empty
  2. Step 1: Plan Your Online Store
  3. Step 2: Choose Your Online Store Builder
  4. Step 3: Set up Your Online Store
  5. Step 4: Add Your Products and Content
  6. Step 5: Use Facebook Ads to Promote Your Store
  7. Step 6: Use Instagram for Marketing
  8. Conclusion

Empty

{"blocks":[{"key":"6qru0","text":"Around 20 or 30 years ago, starting a business was a real hassle. You needed a place, a lot of workers, and capital. That’s aside from the traditional marketing methods that didn’t help much. Now, if you have a laptop and an internet connection, you can start your online store in the blink of an eye.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":301,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":301,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":301,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":301,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"8614h","text":"Granted, it’s not as easy as it seems, but anyone can probably do it. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":70,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":70,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":70,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":70,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"17n82","text":"If you want to learn how to start an online store, this beginner’s guide will put you on the right track. Then, the rest will follow.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":133,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":133,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":133,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":133,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Step 1: Plan Your Online Store

{"blocks":[{"key":"4ecjb","text":"To plan the online store, you need to consider every little detail and plan how you’ll get it done. If you already have the products, then you need to prepare the following for each product:","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":190,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":190,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":190,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":190,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"5luj","text":"Name","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":4,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":4,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":4,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":4,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"khcl","text":"Description","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":11,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":11,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":11,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":11,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"cplr0","text":"Price","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":5,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":5,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":5,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":5,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"b86qi","text":"Photos","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":6,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":6,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":6,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":6,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"1713n","text":"After that, you’ll need to plan the user’s experience. How many collections will you include? What theme will best suit your idea? ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"ui4c","text":"You also need to consider your refund and exchange policy and how many payment options you’ll include. Will you offer credit card payment or only cash on delivery?","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":163,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":163,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":163,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":163,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"bi0bd","text":"For this step, grab a paper and a pen and write down all the questions that come to your mind. Then, answer them yourself and start planning the layout of your store.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":166,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":166,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":166,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":166,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Step 2: Choose Your Online Store Builder

{"blocks":[{"key":"d31as","text":"Choosing your website builder may be the most critical decision you take after deciding to create an online store in the first place. It’ll determine the features and functionality of your store, and it may make or break the user experience. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":242,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":242,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":242,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":242,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"9ha7r","text":"For online stores, the two most popular builders are Shopify and WordPress. Shopify is a pretty solid option, and it offers an affordable hosting plan that only costs $29 per month. It’s also pretty easy to use, and virtually anyone can learn how to create an online store on it.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":279,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":279,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":279,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":279,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"7rkrr","text":"The only downside to Shopify is the limited payment options. If you want to add credit card payment or other payment methods, you’ll need to pay extra fees for a third-party app.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":178,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"5s1mr","text":"As for WordPress, it’s currently the most popular website builder across the globe. It offers endless themes, and it’s affordable in the long term. That said, WordPress needs some setup, and you may need coding skills to use it. It’s worth the effort in the long run, though.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":275,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":275,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":275,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":275,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Step 3: Set up Your Online Store

{"blocks":[{"key":"dcls1","text":"To set up your online store, you need web hosting, a domain name, and an SSL certificate. Web hosting is basically the rented place for your website on the internet. All websites on the internet need web hosting to exist.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":221,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":221,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":221,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":221,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"b6b02","text":"The domain name is the website’s address that shows in the URL. For example, the domain name of Facebook is facebook.com. You’ll need to pay for your domain name, and you may find it already sold, so you’ll need to think of another name.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":237,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":237,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":237,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":237,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"8d5nj","text":"As for the SSL certificate, it’s a security layer on your website that allows it to accept the users’ sensitive data. For the users to log in their data, such as credit card numbers and personal info, you need to have an SSL certificate, which your website builder will provide.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":278,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":278,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":278,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":278,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"4caku","text":"If you want to know how much you’ll need to pay on average, you’ll pay around $10 a month for the web hosting, $15 a year for the domain name, and $70 a year for the SSL certificate. Of course, these numbers will differ according to the website builder of your choice.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":268,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":268,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":268,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":268,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Step 4: Add Your Products and Content

{"blocks":[{"key":"6vpcd","text":"After you choose your website builder, select a theme for your store, and buy the domain name, it’s time to add your products. For this, you’ll need their photos, names, and descriptions.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":187,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":187,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":187,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":187,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"15n50","text":"Your product descriptions should be SEO-optimized, and they should answer all of the user’s questions without the need to ask them.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"4oc1d","text":"As a rule of thumb: the more details provided, the better. That’s especially if your products are complicated or have a lot of features. If you’re selling something that needs assembly, it’d be good to include the steps in the description.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":239,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":239,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":239,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":239,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Step 5: Use Facebook Ads to Promote Your Store

{"blocks":[{"key":"24ii8","text":"Compared to all the other popular marketing methods, Facebook ads are considered affordable. They also allow you to reach a whole of people, so they’re an excellent way to market for your online store.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":201,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":201,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":201,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":201,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"6ffdr","text":"You can run ads for as low as $5 per day, so they’re convenient if you’re on a tight budget.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":92,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":92,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":92,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":92,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"cl5a7","text":"The thing about Facebook ads is, you’ll be able to target specific users, so your online store only reaches those interested in the product. You can also adjust your target audience according to the town, age, or gender.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":220,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":220,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":220,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":220,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"54u5p","text":"To start using Facebook ads, you’ll need to create a business account. After that, you’ll have to create your ads, adjust their goals and target audience, and run them.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":168,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":168,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":168,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":168,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Step 6: Use Instagram for Marketing

{"blocks":[{"key":"1taip","text":"Although Facebook is more affordable than Instagram to use for promotion, Instagram helps you reach a younger audience. It also has a bunch of influencers that you may benefit from.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":181,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":181,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":181,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":181,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"al70j","text":"You can choose influencers with huge followers lists and have them promote your product. You may need to pay money or send a gift in exchange, but it’ll show great results.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":172,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":172,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":172,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":172,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"60pv1","text":"Most online retailers nowadays use Instagram for similar purposes, thanks to the abundance of influencers on it. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":113,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":113,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":113,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":113,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"fbb68","text":"Moreover, on Instagram, you can create shoppable posts, so your followers can buy the products instantly and without a hassle. Generally, Instagram is perfect for promoting online stores.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":187,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":187,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":187,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":187,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Conclusion

{"blocks":[{"key":"60gnf","text":"Creating an online store requires a lot of patience because it may take a lot of time. However, once you start implementing your plan, matters will get much easier. Remember to choose the right website builder for your purpose and budget. And, make sure to promote your store on the right social media platforms.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":312,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":312,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":312,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":312,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}