How does one go about starting a web business? It is a simple question many people are asking these days. Unfortunately, the answer to it is not quite as simple. There are many issues to consider when starting a web business. I'll cover a few of them here while using my own experience as an example.
For most people, starting a web business means selling a product on the web. However, it could also mean selling a service or setting up an affiliate site. For this discussion, I'll cover the option of starting a web business by selling a product. Of course the first step is finding a product and evaluating its potential for starting a web business with.
Find the Right Product
It is always best if you can sell a product you know something about. For example, I know very little about women's hair products. It seems foolhardy for me to attempt starting a web business with them. On the other hand, I could sell computers since I know a lot about computers (Although there is no profit for me in selling computers thanks to Dell).
Ok, so you have a product in mind you know something about. The next step is to look on the web for others selling that product. If there are hundreds of others selling your exact same product, maybe it is not such a great idea. For example, take a look at how many people are selling Advocare products on the web. I would not want any part of that. That many people selling the product means there would be cut-rate pricing going on. This equates to little or no profit for me.
Expect to have a little competition out there. If there are no sites selling your product, this could be bad news too. Maybe there is a problem with selling the product on the Internet you have not discovered yet. In fact, I would rather see a few other sites out there selling the product. That would tell me there is a market for it, and it is a viable product for starting a web business.
Also, it is best if you can find a niche product. For example, it would be better for the person just starting a web business to sell a unique style of women's straw hats than to sell "women's hats" in general. Starting a web business is inexpensive compared to a brick and mortar store, but it is usually wise to limit start-up inventory at first. Additionally, it is much easier to perform search engine optimization on niche products.
Purchase Wholesale In Case Lots
Next you need to take a look at how available the product is to you at wholesale prices. You'll need at least a little cash to invest in order to get bulk pricing by purchasing the product in case lots. Or you may be able to produce the product in someway itself which would be even better. How about starting a web business selling Gourmet Fudge? By the way, "fudge" has a 571 per day count in Word Tracker! Yes, if I knew anything about fudge making, I think I could find my niche there!
You simply have to find a reliable supply of your product at a price low enough that you can be competitive and still make a profit. Do not forget you have to add the shipping costs in too. Usually you'll have to pay the shipping to you for the product and then you have to charge your customers the shipping cost to them. If you happen to be lucky enough to find an item you can drop-ship, you will eliminate the former.
Make sure you can still be competitive after taking into account these shipping fees. Starting a web business selling cement bird baths probably is not going to work due to the high shipping costs. Even if you produce them yourself, the shipping to your customers would probably price them out of reach compared to buying the locally.
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