Online selling hit it big in 2020. Amid the virus and lockdowns, online transactions became one of the best options to get one’s wants and needs. Online selling has become the norm, and if you want to sell your products to a wider market, you’ll need to get connected.
Social media platforms will take a chunk of your profits as a service fee. Using them also makes your business seem less professional as any amateur can use these platforms. Creating your online shop is a better alternative — and most serious businesses will already have one. Your online shop should be easy to access and navigate. Your products or services should be clearly highlighted, and potential customers should be provided with enough information to make quick decisions. Build your online shop to make it more attractive to your target market. Link products together or offer discounts on special occasions. Of course, don’t skimp on security because you’ll be responsible for your company’s and your customers’ data. Even large corporations like Verizon and Facebook have been breached by hackers — so a bit of investment in security is only prudent.
In 2019, online purchases routinely exceeded retail transactions — accounting for more than $3.5 trillion in sales around the globe. To facilitate online transactions, your store needs the right software and the proper systems. It should allow potential customers to browse your online store easily, facilitate purchases, and link with logistics. Credit card transactions are the most common — however, your store’s software should also recognize alternative payment options (Paypal, Payoneer, Venmo, Stripe, etc.), as well as bitcoin. Shopify is one of the most popular options for online merchants. It works on a subscriber model, so you’ll pay a monthly fee instead of a percentage of all sales. It is simple and easy to understand — however, add-ons can be a bit pricey.
Aside from providing an avenue for customers to buy your goods, your online store should also have the capacity to bring those goods to their doorstep. While a casual meet-up is fine when selling an item or two, it becomes untenable if your store sells three or more items a day or if your buyers are located outside of your state. You’ll need some sort of warehouse to store your goods safely and logistic service to move them. The United States Postal Service (USPS) is a good option if you’re just starting out. It charges by the pound, but your rates can go down through USPS’ cubic option once you reach a certain amount of transactions. USPS delivers to 190 countries — allowing your products to reach almost every point in the world. Of course, you’ll also need proper packaging to ensure your products reach their destinations intact.
Recent events put online stores in the limelight. More Americans learned about and experienced online transactions, opening floodgates that changed the way they bought goods permanently. Eventually, online transactions will be the first option when buying or selling — making it essential to every serious business.