How to start an Ecommerce Business in 2023

September 23, 2021
Reading time32 minutes
Jaqueline Corradi
Jaqueline Corradi
Content Manager

Are you an entrepreneur wondering how to start an ecommerce business? The ecommerce industry is a growing market and the prospects for the next years are optimistic, it tends to expand even more. You don't want to get behind it, right?

Creating an ecommerce business from scratch is simpler than it may seem, you will find several tools to help you navigate through the online world of business, and understand how you can profit. According to Statista, 2.14 billion people around the world are expected buy goods and services online this year. 

There is a market that you can reach not only inside your city, or country but in many different regions of the globe. That's one of the ecommerce business advantages, enabling you to go beyond the local market.

How to Start an Ecommerce Business: Step by Step

Define What You Are Going to Sell

The image shows to computers inf front fo one another, in the one on the left side a hand is going out of the screen with a credit card, on the right site, a hand is going out of the other screen holding a paperbag

What products do you want to sell online? That's the first question to answer to understand how to start an ecommerce business. The number of products and services you can commercialize is enormous so are the different types of online stores and the kinds of public. 

You can sell directly to the consumer on a B2C (business-to-consumer) model, for example when someone buys a watch online. But there is also the possibility to sell for other companies in a B2B (business to business) model, where you are going to negotiate with other companies, for example by supplying raw materials. 

An ecommerce business can be focused on selling physical products like furniture or electronics, but there are other options, such as providing services or selling digital goods, like software, and ebooks. 

On the internet, you are going to find specific markets for each of these types, but to decide which one to opt for, you need to consider your business ideas, and what is more viable.  What type of ecommerce business do you want to focus on B2C or B2B? Digital goods, physical items, or services? This is going to depend on your area of expertise as well. 

Analyze the Market You Want to Get Into

If you have an idea of the kind of products or services you desire to sell, the initial movement is to study the market, research if there is a demand for it, and understand what is the initial investment to start in the niche you have selected. Knowing the market is going to be very useful to mitigate the risks and validate your idea. 

Use tools like Google Trends, to comprehend if there is a demand, and also if you are dealing with a trending market. Searching on social media is also very useful.

To help you expand your vision of the market you are about to invest in, analyze your competitors, and pay attention to what strategies they are using, what sales channels they are, and which are their marketing actions. The existence of concurrence is a confirmation of an existent market for your product. 

By getting to know them, you can identify what aspects of your products or services are unique and how you can distinguish yourself from them. That can be a starting point to think about an effective marketing plan.

Study your Potential Customers' Profile

After validating your idea, aware that there is a market for your product, it's time to go deeper into knowing your potential customers’ behaviors. An essential part of understanding how to start an ecommerce business and reduce error risk involves studying the profile of your target audience.

How are you going to set what sales channels to use, create effective ad campaigns, use social media to engage, and turn users into customers if you don't know your possible buyers? 

It's not necessary to have all the answers when starting. On the contrary, you are going to understand your audience more and more, as your business grows, but you should have the main idea of who they are.

For example, try to answer the following questions:

  • What is their age range?
  • Where are they mainly located?
  • What social media do they use?
  • Where do they buy their products or services?

If you had previous experiences in the market you want to get into, probably you have a general idea of the customer profile. In case you already own a physical store, you can start by drawing your target audience behavior from the data you have of your local customers. 

Other useful tools are market studies, focused on your sector. You can also create a form to discover more about your customers’ preferences. But, remember, this is just a draft to help you start.

Decide which Sales Channels You are Going to Use

Understanding customer behavior is going to help you a lot when it comes to deciding on which online channels to sell. Because you are going to be able to identify where your target audience buys. 

But, what are these sales channels? You may ask. The main ones are the ecommerce websites, marketplaces (multi-seller platforms focused on several sectors or in just one), and social media platforms that have become a place to close sales directly. 

Amazon and eBay are two of the most famous marketplaces nowadays, while Instagram has been seen by many as the main social media network to sell. But, once more, it depends on who your customers are, and your business model. 

Define the Payment and Shipping Methods

You also need to set up which payment methods your store will accept, and decide how the products will be shipped as well. 

Credit and debit cards are the most popular payment methods for ecommerce stores. All the customer needs to do is insert the card information and finalize the purchase with just a few clicks. 

You can also enable them to use digital wallets like Apple Pay, and payment gateways such as PayPal, and Stripe. And, there are many other options depending on the region you are selling to, study what is best for your customers and your business. 

When it comes to shipment, your company can deliver the orders, but you will need to invest in vehicles and hire more employees, which may cost a lot. Therefore, most businesses prefer to partner up with courier companies. 

Offering more than one shipping method is great because it allows customers to choose the price and delivery time that is best for them. Many ecommerce website builders already offer partnerships with couriers, you can enjoy that too. 

Build an Ecommerce Business Plan

On the left side of the image, it's written "innovation, sales, performance, opportunities, marketing, plan, ideas, competition, and business. In the middle there is a man with arms pointing to the words on each side. On the right side of the image is written "customer, venture, teamwork, team, support, strategy, and goals".

Validate your idea, study the market and competitors, analyze your potential customer’s behavior, and define which sales channels to use: all of this is part of an essential item to have success on how to start an ecommerce business: your business plan

Before building your online store, create a plan to sketch how you are going to develop your idea, define your sales and marketing strategies, identify your business model, and set short and long-term goals. 

The business plan will give you a broader vision of the paths to follow to succeed, it's like a roadmap, where you can even predict possible problems and prevent them.

You may feel more compelled to start putting things into practice, but taking time to study and write a plan will be very useful, including, if you need to present your ecommerce to investors, hire new employees, or make partnerships. 

A business plan should include:

  • Business concept
  • Goals and vision
  • What you are going to sell
  • The highlights of your products or services
  • Target market
  • Potential customers profile
  • Marketing plan
  • Financial plan

Keep in mind that your business plan is going to suffer a lot of alterations along the way after you launch your ecommerce. That's not a bad thing, as you learn with experience, you can adapt and develop even more precise strategies. 

Create Your Brand's Visual Identity

With your business plan ready, you already have a good idea of how your business will function, who your target audience is, and which values and mission are at the core of your brand. This will help you to begin developing its visual identity, which is essential for communicating with your public. 

Create the logo, and choose the color palette and font of your brand, along with a guideline about how to apply those elements on ads, social media posts, your website, and other materials. 

It's very important to have a strong visual identity, which is aligned with your company's main characteristics. Just take a look at big companies like Apple, and Coke, their logos are easily recognizable without even the need to see the name of the brand.

Choose an Ecommerce Website Builder

The advantage of having an ecommerce website, even when you will use social media platforms and marketplaces to sell, is having a space that you can fully customize, according to your company needs. 

You will be able to create your domain, develop as many pages as you find necessary, and include marketing strategies such as adding a blog or integrating the website with an automated email marketing tool, to keep in contact with your customers, build loyalty, but also to reach users who may turn into clients. 

To develop your ecommerce website there is no need to have coding or design skills. On the internet, you are going to find many website builders that provide solutions to create an online store with pre-built templates.  

Get Ready to Launch Your Ecommerce Business

After you have followed all the steps, with your business plan on hand,  the ecommerce website, and other sales channels set, it's time to launch your ecommerce business.

Being prepared is going to help you enter the market with some guidelines, but, don't forget, launching is when you dive in, so don't wait for the perfect conditions to do it.

Review your website, make sure all the tasks that enable you to start selling online are complete, and it's time to get into the market. Don't be afraid to make changes on the way. If there is any problem, the most important is how you are going to deal with it, don't let it stop you. 

Mainly, in the beginning, it may seem harder, but surviving this moment distinguishes many successful entrepreneurs from others. 

Promote Your Ecommerce Business

Starting an ecommerce business is just the beginning of your journey as an entrepreneur in the digital world. It's necessary to make your ecommerce store known and attract potential buyers. Therefore, you will need to develop marketing strategies.

To do that, consider the main characteristics of your target audience. You must be where they are, and drive their attention to your brand and products. Create a page or profile on the social media platforms they use, and post high-quality content that is related to your business area, but also talks directly to your customers' demands. 

It may be interesting to invest in ads too. You can create pay-per-click campaigns to be shown on Google search result pages, Instagram, Facebook, and websites that are often visited by your target audience.

Follow up on Your Ecommerce Business Closely 

The image show a hand pointing on a screen where is a play button, going out of the screen there are many icons of a speaker, a musical note, coins, movie, and others

Launching the ecommerce business is only the start. To achieve your goals and have revenue, you must follow up on each process of your ecommerce business. For example, the marketing actions. 

If you have created social media pages to advertise your products or services, engage with your public, and sell, there must be a posting schedule. But, it's not only about keeping the pages updated, you should check the comments and the direct messages, answer them, or select someone from your team to do it.

People are looking for unique and personalized experiences, sometimes not having an answer when they send a message to a store, is what prevents users from becoming customers. 

Also, make sure all your communication channels are aligned to your brand’s visual identity and develop a tone of voice that has to do with your company's vision. Those may seem like small details but can conquer many clients. 

Another essential task to control is if the number of sales isn't bigger than the number of products available.  With an automated and centralized inventory system, which many ecommerce website builders include, it's easier to always be updated. Follow the order status, and certify that the products have properly been delivered.

Keep in mind the work isn't finished after concluding the sales, stimulating customer loyalty is very important. You can do that by creating actions that encourage the customer to go back to your store, for example, a thank you note page with a discount for the next purchase or offering a fidelity program. 

21 Ecommerce Website Builders You Should Know

To help you choose which ecommerce website builder to use, we have separated three of them, which present some of the best features you will encounter. Take a look at their main advantages. 

1. Wix

Create your own Ecommerce with Wix today

Undoubtedly, one of the best platforms available nowadays to sell online is Wix. With a user-friendly interface, you are going to see that creating an online store is simpler than you have ever imagined. 

No design or coding skills are required, you will start by creating your account and choosing one of the business plans offered: Basic, Unlimited, or Vip. But, no worries about making the wrong choice, in all of them you will have the 14-day trial, so you can test everything you need. 

Wix offers more than 500 free pre-built templates, divided into categories such as product landing pages, accessories stores, beauty shops, supermarkets, and electronics stores. After defining the one you want to use, it's up to you to customize the entire store, to turn it into your brand's face. 

Then, you will add the products, choose the payment and shipping methods, create your domain name, and you are ready to launch. To help in this process, tWix has some very useful features, for example, Wix Payments where you can set up payment methods without having to add third parties. 

Wix also has an automated sales tax calculator, making it easier to define the prices. Beyond that, you will have a mobile-friendly ecommerce,  where you can set multi-channels to make your sales, like using social media, and manage everything from one dashboard. 

Highlighted features: 

  • More than 500 free templates
  • Wix payments
  • Automated sales tax
  • Free SSL Certificate
  • Currency converter
  • Express Checkout
  • Abandoned cart recovery
  • Multichannel inventory management
  • Built-in SEO tools
  • Wix Owner app

2. Shopify

Shopify logo

When the subject is the best platform to sell online, there is no way not to mention Shopify, one of the most popular shopping solutions online. Creating your store is simple and fast. 

You can choose among more than 70 customizable, responsive themes, and adjust everything according to your business needs with the drag-and-drop builder. To offer the main payment option, such as credit cards, there is no need to add third parties, you can use Shopify Payments. 

Regarding managing your online store, you will have access to a dashboard that is easy to navigate through. You can see valuable data about the sales and your audience, using it to improve your business plan

The management area is accessible by Shopify mobile app too, you can control everything wherever you are. Besides, you will be able to add more than 6 thousand apps to help you grow your business, including marketing and social media tools. 

Highlighted features:

  • Drag-and-drop store builder
  • Shopify Payments system
  • Mobile-friendly design
  • Built-in SEO tools
  • Easy-to-use dashboard
  • Shopify mobile app
  • Synced inventory across all your sales channels
  • More than 6.000 apps

3. Bluehost

Unlimited hosting services by Bluehost

With Bluehost, the process to learn how to sell online becomes much simpler. You can have the ecommerce website of your dreams. Choose your domain name and the hosting plan that best suits your needs, then select the pre-built template you prefer. You can customize all the pages, change the colors, add pictures, texts, graphic elements, and much more. 

To guarantee the quality of your website, Bluehost offers automated security updates, backup data protection, and 24/7 customer support. If there is any problem, you can count on specialized assistance. 

To enhance user experience and make it easier to manage your online store, you can install multiple plugins to the website too. To help you increase organic traffic, the platform provides SEO tools, and you can check the performance of the pages with the analytics dashboard. 

Highlighted features:

  • Free domain
  • Free SSL
  • Free CDN
  • Pre-built templates
  • Insightful analytics
  • Automated security updates
  • Backup data protection
  • 24/7 support
  • SEO tools
  • Powerful plugins

4. SITE123

Site123 logo

Site123 offers many features to build a complete online store and facilitate the management process. Focused on small businesses, your ecommerce store will be quickly ready, you choose a template, customize it, establish the type of your store, add your products and define taxes and shipping rates. 

After launching, you can easily manage your online store at the Site123 dashboard, which can be accessed on your computer, tablet, or smartphone.  As payment methods, you will be able to add the main credit cards, PayPal, and other major payment gateways. 

In case of any doubt, you can count on 24/7  live chat support, and, to ensure your customers’ security, you will have SSL certificates.  

Highlighted features:

  • Many types of payment platforms
  • Manage shipping and tax rates inside the system
  • Automated store inventory
  • Choose the accepted currencies
  • SSL Certificates
  • Sell from any device
  • 24/7 live support

5. Webnode

Webnode logo

To create an online store at Webnode, you can connect to a website that you already have or create a new one. You will find several templates to opt for the one that suits you best and customize it, including choosing the idiom. The system has 24 language versions, offers an unlimited number of pages, and allows you to edit on any device.

You can add new products in a few minutes, just upload the pictures, write the description, set prices, and click to publish. Every time there is an order at your store, you receive a notification, you can manage the status order, notify your clients, and archive the fulfilled orders. 

Regardless of the template you choose, all of them are mobile-friendly, improving customer experience. Also, you can set different payment methods, credit cards, wire transfers, Stripe, and PayPal, among others. 

Highlighted features: 

  • Responsive store templates
  • Store statistics
  • Quick and simple checkout
  • Import products in bulk
  • Export to price comparison sites
  • GDPR friendly
  • Cookie consent bar
  • Integrates with Google Analytics

6. Shoplazza

Shoplazza logo

Shoplazza offers you an easy-to-use platform to create your ecommerce. You can choose a pre-built theme, then use the drag-and-drop online store builder to customize the pages as you wish. 

You will count on an inventory management system to make it simpler when it comes to organizing the stock and the orders. It stops sales when the inventory reaches zero, avoiding selling out-of-stock items. You can upload an unlimited number of products and customize up to 300 product variants.

You even have the option to add the buy button on other websites and blogs, which weren't created by Shoplazza, so you can sell in more places. Improve the checkout process using the platform AI (artificial intelligence) suggestions. 

Highlighted features:

  • Pre-built templates
  • Drag-and-drop online store button
  • Inventory management system
  • Marketing tools
  • SEO tools
  • Staff accounts
  • Multiple payment options
  • Shipping partners

7. BigCommerce

BigCommerce logo

BigCommerce offers solutions for small to big companies that want to develop their online store websites. If you are just starting your business or already have a well-established brand in your market sector, you will find the right features that align with your business objectives. 

BigCommerce Essential is focused on entrepreneurs who are starting their businesses and allows you to create a website store with no complications. Before launching your ecommerce you can start a trial and develop your website with customizable templates. 

You can set your domain, install plugins to leading page providers, and sell at other platforms by integrating channels, such as Amazon, eBay, and Google, and manage everything from BigCommerce. 

Another feature is the possibility to easily manage your inventory and integrate it with online and offline channels. To help you improve, you can count on 24/7 support, including advice from BigCommerce experts. They also have webinars, tutorials, and guides. 

BigCommerce Enterprise has all those advantages, but also offers tools for companies who desire to design with more freedom, has flexible API, allows you to use any front-end, and has specific tools for companies focused on business-to-business (B2B) sales. 

Highlighted features:

  • Customizable URLs
  • Plugin POS integration to leading providers
  • Channels integration
  • Optimized one-page checkout 
  • Shopping cart recovery
  • Inventory management tools
  • 24/7 support
  • Product filtering for searches
  • Built-in coupons and discounting

8. Ecwid

Ecwid page

Are you looking for a free ecommerce website builder? Ecwid allows you to create your store without having to pay anything and upgrade to a paid plan only if you want it. The free plan allows you to sell on different channels, like Facebook, Instagram, or Amazon, and simply manage everything with a centralized inventory. 

You can develop and control your marketing strategies on the same dashboard, for example, by creating and following up on Google and Facebook ads performance, sending automated messages to your clients, and integrating with Mailchimp.

Ecwid enables you to include several payment methods, more than 50 options, in a fast and safe way. Besides, you can choose as many shipping options as you want.

Highlighted features:

  • Create your online store for free
  • Customizable design tools
  • Sell on social media
  • Centralized inventory
  • Manage your marketing actions in one place
  • Integrates with Mailchimp
  • Real-time shipping rates

9. WooCommerce

WooCommerce logo

Are you looking for an ecommerce builder that works perfectly for WordPress websites? No doubt, WooCommerce is the best solution for that, because it was built on WordPress, which means considering all the necessary features to perfectly sync with it.

If you already have a website WordPress, what you are going to do is to add the WooCommerce plugin and customize your store with pre-built templates. But, if you don't have it, you can start by creating your account and setting up the site along with your online store. 

One of the greatest advantages of WooCommerce is that you can add several extensions such as TaxJar, Google Ads, Mailchimp, ShipStation, Jetpack, and Facebook. They are going to help you manage your strategies in a more centralized way, and also improve the customer experience. 

Built with a REST API, Woo Commerce was thought to be a scalable tool, which means it is able to adapt according to your business needs, as you grow. To enhance your performance and learn from others, you will count on a  huge global community and be able to participate in several meetups. 

Highlighted features:

  • Built on WordPress
  • Customizable, open-source ecommerce platform
  • 140 specific payment gateways
  • Live shipping rates
  • Marketing integrations
  • Support forum
  • Set prices in multiple currencies
  • Create multilingual content
  • Scalable platform 
  • Hundreds of extensions
  • Manage the store from your mobile device
  • Track your stats
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

10. Jumpseller

Jumpseller logo

When you create your online store it must have your brand’s visual identity. To do that, having customizable mobile-friendly templates will make that task much easier, and JumpSeller offers it. You can edit all the pages the way you wish, including the checkout, and have your store set up in different languages. 

Jumpseller is partnered with shipping companies, allowing you to save money by using the discounts offered, and other facilities like print labels. Besides, you can expand your business by accepting payments from different currencies and using local payment methods. 

The ecommerce builder has an all-in-one platform where you can manage different sales channels on the same dashboard, and create marketing strategies too.

Highlighted features:

  • Customizable theme
  • Mobile-friendly
  • Translate your store into several languages
  • Create your domain
  • Discounts with partnered shipping carriers
  • Accept various currencies
  • Connect to social media
  • Sell in several channels

11. Strikingly

Strikingly logo

Strikingly isn't only a website builder, but also enables you to easily create your online store. You will find a big amount of customizable templates, which are easy to edit and all of them have a responsive design. 

The platform offers 4 different plans, Free, Limited, Pro, and VIP, all of which have the possibility to include an online store. You should pay attention, though, to the number of products each plan allows you to add. For example, in the free plan, you can sell only one product.

On the ecommerce management dashboard, you can connect to PayPal or Stripe, easily set shipping methods, and add coupons. Besides, Strikingly has tools to help you create membership logins, and forms, set up email marketing, and direct your customers to your social media pages. 

Highlighted features: 

  • Register a new domain or use one you already have
  • Analytics built-in
  • HTTPS built-in
  • Easily customizable templates
  • Add links to your social media pages
  • 24/7 support
  • Create and manage forms
  • Register memberships

12. Weebly

Weebly logo

Enabling entrepreneurs for developing professional ecommerce websites has become much simpler through Weebly features. With customizable themes, you can edit the one you choose and easily create a unique store by using the drag-and-drop builder. 

Weebly also offers several marketing tools, for example, you can send a welcome email to new customers or a special discount when you see an abandoned cart. You can also analyze your ecommerce performance through SEO tools and install a huge variety of apps to make the customer experience even better. 

You can launch and manage your store from anywhere, using the mobile app on your smartphone or tablet. The inventory is easily tracked, and, in case of needing to add a big number of products at the same time, you can bulk import.

Highlighted features:

  • Customizable themes
  • Marketing tools
  • SEO tools
  • Several apps to install
  • Real-time shipping rates
  • Bulk import
  • Coupon builder
  • Product search
  • Automatic tax calculator

13. WiziShop

WiziShop logo

WiziShop enables you to build an ecommerce site that is technically ready for SEO, which helps to get your pages to rank better in search engines like Google. You will have the flexibility to develop your website as you wish, starting by selecting a professionally designed pre-built template that suits your needs. Customize it to align with your brand's identity.

The ecommerce platform has all the tools you need not only to design the pages, but also to promote your online store, and manage it.  To enhance customer experience, you can include banners, customer reviews, abandoned cart follow-ups, and much more. 

You will also count on Wizishop's CMS (Content Management System) to create a personalized sales funnel and develop marketing strategies as well. You can choose the payment system that suits your company best, set the delivery methods, create a domain name, and start selling. 

Highlighted features:

  • Pre-built templates
  • Responsive design
  • SEO tools
  • CMS
  • Website hosting
  • Analytical tools
  • Email marketing

14. Shift4Shop

Shift4Shop logo

Shift4Shop is a free website builder which offers many resources, starting from giving you a big variety of professionally designed, industry-specific, and mobile-friendly templates. They have a web design tool to help you customize everything, but you can edit directly the HTML and CSS too. 

The free plan includes unlimited products, features, and bandwidth. You will also count on migration assistance and fraud protection. Shift4Shop provides marketing tools, as well, like built-in e-mail marketing, and the possibility to include group deals, daily deals, coupons, and discounts, among others.

It also has cart abandonment recovery tools, focused on automatically engaging users, and motivating them to finish their purchase. Another benefit is that each part of your website is pre-optimized for SEO.

Highlighted features:

  • Inventory management tools
  • Product management software
  • Analytical tools
  • Cart abandonment recovery tools
  • SEO optimization
  • Visa CPI Certified Security
  • Real-time shipping rates
  • Integrated with PayPal
  • Centralized inventory to sell in different channels

15. Volusion

Volusion logo

Developing your online store without knowing how to code, and being able to set up everything by choosing a pre-built responsive theme: Volusion makes it possible and also provides a 14-day trial.   

After customizing your website design, you can add several tools such as shipping methods, other selling channels, automated email, payment gateways, and stats about your store performance. Besides, the built-in SEO management will help you to gain more visibility.

When adding your products, you have the opportunity to use some tools that will make it even simpler and more effective, like variant pricing, import products via CSV, and rich text product descriptions. 

Highlighted features:

  • Responsive themes
  • Add site search
  • Built-in SEO
  • Integration with marketplaces
  • Secure checkout
  • Comprehensive management system
  • Search friendly URLs
  • Admin Social Management
  • Reporting tools

16. Magento

Magento logo

Magento is the ecommerce website builder from Adobe, and it's driven to help companies to develop a great shopping experience, with several features. In the page builder, you are going to encounter an intuitive interface and content editor that allow you to customize everything, using the drag-and-drop tool.

The platform was created to help businesses of all sizes, small to big companies according to their needs. You can integrate the store with other selling channels, use B2B solutions, and easily manage your inventory.

Adobe also has a global community where you can find different partners to help you grow and find exactly what you were expecting. For example, you can have technology partners that will give you directions to optimize the way you use Magento. Community insiders, and certified Magento developers, can guide you through creating a better design. 

Highlighted features: 

  • B2B ecommerce
  • Customer segmentation and personalization
  • Integrates with other sales channels
  • Cloud-based services
  • Mobile-friendly
  • Live search
  • Instant purchase
  • Connected Enterprise Resource Planning

17. Squarespace

Squarespace logo

Squarespace is an ecommerce website builder that will enable you to create pages that better suit your business needs. Focusing on growing and expanding, before creating your account, you will choose which template has more to do with your brand visual identity, and customize it, the images, the color palette, and fonts. 

Each online store sector has its specificities, taking that into consideration Square Space includes many tools to add to your choice and also has marketing features. This way, you can implement actions such as email campaigns, through the platform. 

They provide solutions not only to sell physical products, but also digital content, like ebooks and music, subscriptions, or services. Besides, if you sell online or in-person, you can use the Squarespace inventory to keep everything synced. 

Highlighted features: 

  • Customizable templates
  • Mobile optimized design
  • Easy-to-use interface
  • Centralized inventory
  • Real-time shipping estimates for US customers
  • Simple payment and checkout
  • 24/7 support
  • Automate sales tax filing
  • Built-in SEO tools

18. PrestaShop

PrestaShop logo

With PrestaShop, you can count on a highly scalable and flexible option to have an online store that suits your client's needs. You can fully personalize the website pages by choosing a pre-built theme, adding useful features, selecting the color palette, font, inserting images, and much more. 

The platform has an intuitive interface, which means you and your team can easily learn how to navigate through its tools and make the most of it to offer the customer experience. You can manage everything from a single platform, including controlling the inventory, the payment process, and shipping. 

You also can enjoy the marketing tools to launch campaigns and promote your brand. Another advantage is the option to sell internationally, by having a multilingual store and adding multi-currency options.

Highlighted features: 

  • Pre-built themes
  • Easy-to-use
  • All-in-one-platform
  • Sell internationally
  • Marketing tools
  • Analytics tools
  • Customer support

19. Sellfy

Sellfy logo

Sellfy is an easy-to-use ecommerce platform that allows you to create your online store with just a few clicks. It was developed focusing on helping creators to sell their digital products and merchandise online. 

To begin, all you need to do is sign up for the platform, add your products, then customize every page to have your brand's identity. You can also use Sellfy to commercialize your products on social media like Facebook and Instagram and manage everything in one place. Enjoy the built-in marketing features to promote your store and enhance your revenue. 

You can sell a huge variety of digital products, such as ebooks, videos, audio, and other files in multiple formats. It's also possible to create digital subscriptions and charge your customers periodically, another possibility is offering video streaming services on demand. 

Highlighted features: 

  • Easy-to-use
  • Sell products and subscriptions
  • Responsive design
  • Customization tools
  • Built-in marketing features
  • Sell from social media
  • Multiple payment options

20. BigCartel

BigCartel logo

The BigCartel platform is recommended for artists who want to sell their products online. You will find the proper tool to make it easier to run a creative business. To begin building your online store, select one of the pre-built themes, and customize it according to your brand's visual identity.

Then, add the products, and set up important configurations such as the payment and shipping methods. You can count on very useful tools to manage your store, fulfill orders, update products, check stats, and run promotions from any device. 

Highlighted features: 

  • Developed for artists by artists
  • Easy-to-use
  • Pre-built themes
  • Personalization tools
  • Management tools

21. ShopWired

Shopwired logo

ShopWired is considered the best ecommerce platform in the United Kingdom. It offers you beautiful and responsive themes, so you can build your online store without having to design it yourself, but still be able to customize the details to be aligned with your brand's visual identity. 

The platform integrates the most important features for managing an online business, so you can centralize all your tasks in a single place. You will be able to keep track of all the orders, update the product catalog, and create promotions. If you already use another platform, you can fully migrate to ShopWired in 7 days or less.

Highlighted features: 

  • Responsive design
  • Pre-built themes
  • Customization tools
  • No coding or software installation required
  • All-in-one platform
  • Sell on social media
  • Customer support
  • Insightful reports
  • Advanced b2b features

FAQ about how to start an ecommerce business

Having doubts about how to start an ecommerce business is more than normal, it's a new area for you, and you are discovering its particularities. Studying the ecommerce industry is a way to feel safer to develop your new enterprise. 

How much does it cost to start an ecommerce business?

It isn't possible to say one specific value for all ecommerce businesses. It depends on the size of your company, the business model, the website builder, and other sales channels you choose. 

For example, if you opt for being a reseller using the dropship model you won't have to spend money on building a warehouse for your company or developing a packaging system. The company, whose products you will be selling, is responsible for all the logistics. This considerably reduces the initial investment. 

If your company makes the products that will be sold at your online store, then it's necessary to include the production costs, and the processes it entails until the item is delivered.

However, when we are talking about digital products or services, the cost is also different. With an ebook, you don't have to spend on shipping, for instance. 

How to choose the best ecommerce website builder?

The best website builder has to offer you some basic features, such as an easy-to-use interface, customizable templates, SEO and marketing tools, and a centralized dashboard that enables you to manage all your sales. 

Observe if the platform you are hosting your website is stable, has a good load speed, allows you to scale your business, create your domain, and offers support to solve technical issues. 

Also, pay attention to what plan suits your business needs. Each online store has its specific aspects, there isn't one plan that fits all. You have to research deeply, and you can test different ecommerce website builders since many of them provide a free trial period. 

How to start a dropshipping ecommerce business?

In the dropshipping system, the product goes directly from the supplier to the customer, and your store will intermediate the sales, but you don't have to worry about renting a place to create a warehouse, for example.  

You can focus all your business plan on improving marketing and sales strategies, and how to make the best use of each sales channel. That's what has been attracting so many entrepreneurs to this model, along with the reduced capital investment.

To start, besides selecting the sector and kind of products you want to work with, you will have to search for the best supplier. Do deep research, find the ones that offer the dropshipping system, get in contact, and analyze the prices.   

With this settled, you can follow the same tips we have listed here on how to start an ecommerce business. 

Is an ecommerce business profitable?

Yes, it can be very profitable, and the financial market predicts the ecommerce industry will keep expanding and increasing revenue. According to eMarketer, by 2024 the ecommerce market will have achieved $6 trillion on sales. 

But, of course, to have a profitable company, you need to create a viable business and dedicate yourself from building and validating your idea to everyday sales management. 

Learn the steps on how to start an ecommerce business and begin your journey to success

Now you have understood how to start an ecommerce business, what about taking that idea you kept on the back of your mind and begin developing it? You have the guideline, and many resources to research, build reports, and test your products and services at your fingertips, in the vast world of the internet. Give your first step.

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