3 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Diving into Ecommerce
Earning a full-time living working from home may seem like the dream to end all dreams for many of us, but if you’re thinking about getting involved in the world of e-commerce, it’s important that you know what you’re in for and that you are able to approach things with the proper perspective.
Here are three questions that you need to ask yourself before getting started in e-commerce.
- Do I have access to the right resources to do this right now?
Every business endeavour will require an initial financial investment from you. The investment may not be big, but as the saying goes, “you’ve got to spend some money to make some money”.
When it comes to e-commerce, the first question to ask yourself is whether you have enough money available to spend on the requisite online services. Are you able to pay someone for e-commerce website design? Can you afford to hire a photographer to take a professional headshot of you for an “about” page?
These things may seem petty, and you may be tempted to just try your luck with a selfie from your Instagram profile and a template website from a free host.
Beware, though. If you’re not able to create a thoroughly professional web image by yourself, you must hire someone who can. In the absence of a physical storefront, your success in e-commerce depends entirely on how well you’re able to market yourself online.
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- Do I have something to sell, or do I want to sell other people’s products?
E-commerce can roughly be divided between “true e-commerce” and affiliate marketing.
Before beginning your foray into the world of e-commerce, you need to have a clear idea of whether you have a physical product to sell (and the means to produce, store, and ship that product reliably) or whether you’re interested in maintaining a “no-stock” structure, and “selling” other people’s goods instead.
The benefit of affiliate marketing is that the entire operation is digital. You essentially “advertise” someone else’s goods, and get a commission fee when customers buy through you.
The downside of affiliate marketing is that it can be extremely tricky trying to “sell” enough to make even a small amount of money.
With “true e-commerce”, you keep all of your profits, and so can afford to “sell” less, but also have to worry about producing, storing, and shipping your own goods.
- Do I want to do this to “get rich quick”, or because I genuinely like the idea?
E-commerce is many things, but you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who knows what they’re talking about who’d go on record calling it a “get rich quick” system.
Often, when starting out in e-commerce, you’ll have to work long and hard for little or no payback, for a good deal of time — and maybe forever. Most businesses simply don’t get off the ground.
Ask yourself, are you interested in e-commerce for the whole experience, or just to get rich quick? If it’s the latter, better not bother.
Image via Pixabay
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