How to Start an Online Business: The Ultimate Guide

How cool is it to be your own boss? Many people dream of being self-employed. In fact, there are 582 million entrepreneurs around the globe!
As awesome as it is to play by your own rules, starting an online business can be a pretty long process that requires thorough planning, extensive research, and some serious brainstorming.
So we’ve created a step-by-step guide that tackles all your questions and concerns.
Buckle up and let’s get started!

Reasons to Start an Online Business

In today’s modern world, where the internet controls production, entertainment, and social activity, starting a business is considered easier than ever. Here’s why:
Fairly Inexpensive
Online businesses usually have a lower startup cost. Not to mention, omitting factors such as utility bills makes it less costly than brick-and-mortar stores.
Only a Click Away
No need to put on shoes and stop for gas. All you and your customers need is the internet to visit your website! Unlike physical stores, e-commerce stores are much easier to access and manage.
Flexible Schedule
Don’t feel like working the usual 9-5? You don’t have to! Working remotely gives you the freedom to choose your own hours and location.

Things to Consider Before Starting Your Online Business

Before booting up your computer and getting started right away, there are a couple of things you should consider first.
What You Like to Do
Do you have any talents? Skills? You’d be surprised at the number of online businesses that peaked purely from small everyday hobbies!
What Kind of Business You’re Looking to Start
Whether it’s an online clothing store, freelance writing, or selling your art, It’s crucial to establish what type of business you want to build.
How You’ll Deliver Your Products
You can deliver your products yourself or you can drop ship them to your customers. As for packaging, you can either DIY or have a packaging company do it for you.
Determining your shipping fees depends on shipping point and origin, package weight, package dimensions, and estimated delivery timeframes.
Where You’ll Store Your Products
It’s pretty normal for your home to be your warehouse at first. However, as your business progresses, you might need bigger storage. Drop shippers can also take care of that for you. Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get right into the actual steps of how to start an online business.

How to Start an Online Business

With so many tutorials and how-to guides out there, it can get difficult to know where to begin. We’ve got you covered with the most crucial steps. Let’s get into it.
Know Your Niche and Business Idea
A business niche is a distinct sector of marketing with its own set of criteria, consumers, and products. So, in other words, know which category you want your business to be in. To do that, you need three things.
  • Find your target audience.
  • Research and identify your target audience's requirements, objectives, motivations, complaints, and expectations.
  • Advertise your business to that specific clientele.
Deep Dive into the World of Research
When you conduct product research, you'll learn if your product will be a hit on the market, what other goods are comparable to yours, and the best approach to create and promote the item.
According to the Edmonton Journal, companies that conduct frequent product research have an edge over their competition.
Keep It 100% Legal
To avoid any complications, learn about online business laws. Be sure your business is legitimate and that you have all the required permits and licenses.
Establish Your Brand Image and Domain Name
Your brand image and domain name will influence your success in the long run. They will also encourage your capacity to sell, become more prominent, cooperate with other businesses, and create an impression.
Build and Design a Website
According to Sweor, 38% of viewers will immediately exit a website with poor design and layout. Also, a mobile-friendly website, according to business web design companies, is essential for internet marketing success.
If you’re wondering how to build and design a website, don’t worry, we got you!
We’ve listed the current top three website building services along with the top three web design tools below.
  • Top 3 website building services:
  1. Wix
  2. HostGator
  3. Squarespace
  • Top 3 web design tools:
  1. Invision
  2. Sketch
  3. Adobe XD

The Big Launch!

Knowing your company’s specialty, doing research, learning about online business rules, and choosing a domain name are all steps in the right direction. You’re officially ready to launch!
Woo-hoo! Now that you've launched your business, you’re officially on the road to being a successful entrepreneur.

4 Things to Do After Launching

Well, launching your business and bringing it to life will provide a new set of challenges: how to attract traffic to your site now that it's up and running, and what type of content to publish.
Spread the Word and Get Exposure
The fastest and easiest way to promote your business is through social media. This is a good time to connect with friends and other business owners to help you market your business by promoting you on their website.
Mingle on the Socials
Create accounts on top platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest. Start posting, sharing, liking, and engaging with your audience.
Protect Your Website
Not backing up your site data risks losing all the effort you've made. Having to develop a new website from the ground up wastes time and money. The material you worked so hard to develop may not be recoverable if your website has many pages or a blog.
CodeGuard, SpiderOak One, and IDrive are online services that create regular backups so you don’t lose your content.
Study the Stats
The amount of daily, weekly, and monthly active users, as well as the source of those users, is always something you want to know. Key performance indicators (KPIs) to track include conversion rates, website hits, site speed, and more.
Google Analytics is a great tool for figuring out what's working and what needs to be changed.


Starting an online business may be a little daunting, with so many steps, challenges, studies, and even guidelines available.
This is why we've created this short, easy guide that highlights the most critical aspects you need to get started. Each of these steps is indispensable, so make sure you pay close attention.
Once you’ve learned how to recognize your specialty, perform research, in addition to learning all about marketing, legal issues, and securing your business, you’re now ready to roll up your sleeves and get to work!