Almost everyone spends most, if not all, of their time on the internet doing everything from buying a product to using a service, playing or reading, or for entertainment. The online world continues to transform the way people connect, share information, and do business. Because of the amount of time people spend on the internet, most companies have also moved online.
Starting an online selling business can be exciting. But once you start selling your products online, it can also be overwhelming. Online selling is not just about posting your products and waiting for people to find and buy them. It needs a lot of considerations and research. And, of course, there’s a proper process to follow if you want your business to become successful. So before you fully decide on starting your online business, you must know these eight easy steps to sell your products online.
1- Create your website
Websites are essential in the growth of any business. One of the significant advantages of having your website is that your products can be accessible to anyone, anywhere, anytime, with just one click. Compared to renting a booth inside the mall where customers can only see your products within mall hours, having your website can give your clients access to your products even during non-business hours. Customers can quickly get the information they request about your product without having to speak to you face-to-face. Your website can be your showroom at a very minimal cost.
By setting up your website, information exchange is also easier. Customers can be updated with your latest products or with your latest deals or discounts by simply posting on your website. You can also use your website as a tool where customers can sign up for a newsletter about any upcoming news or events. And most importantly, your website can be an easy tool in answering all your customer’s queries by setting up contact forms and inviting questions or requests from customers.
Here are two of the most used online platform in creating a website for your products:
Shopify is an e-commerce platform that everyone can use to set up an online store. Shopify is a subscription-based software solution that allows business owners or sellers to build an online store quickly. For a monthly subscription of $29, you can design your shop, post your products online, track your inventory, accept payments from customers, easily calculate shipping as well as tax fees, and a lot more. However, Shopify can only be your online showroom or store, but you should still do all the back office work like shipping and marketing as the shop owner.
To sign up for Shopify, go to Shopify.com and use the signup form to create an account. By signing up, you can also get a free 14-day trial. Make your store name unique and something that will stand out, choose your preferred theme and layout and customize your website. Put your products and fill out all other needed information like payment gateways and card types. Once done, you already have your online store.
WordPress, unlikely Shopify, is merely for creating websites. It doesn’t have the function of calculating taxes and shipping fees. However, WordPress is best for small businesses as it is free to use but is also customizable. You can easily set up your website through its user-friendly interface and a wide variety of themes. You can also choose your online store name, put your logo, and post your products. Some of the famous brands that use WordPress are Walt Disney, MTV News, and Vogue.
2- Use local free classified websites.
Classified ads are no longer seen in just newspapers only as there are already many online classified ads websites available. These sites allow you to post an ad for free and locally so you can easily reach your potential customers within your city or community. Here are some of the famous local classified ads website you can use:
Craigslist is one of the most used classified sites and is currently among the top 10 most popular websites in the USA. Craigslist is famous for its text-based layout, which makes it easy to navigate. It allows you to post your product and link it to your website, which gives you more online traffic.
FreeAdsTime is one of the fastest-growing free classified ads sites. It allows you to post an ad for a specific city, giving you the advantage if you want your customers to be easily reachable.
If you are selling second-hand items, then Gumtree is a good alternative for you. Posting an ad on Gumtree is free, but a minimal fee needs to be paid if you want to list your items for wider results.
FinderMaster is available in more than 100 countries around the world. Its layout is user-friendly and allows you to post an ad quickly.
With over 15 million monthly users across seven countries, Oodle is one of the largest ad networks. If you have listed your products on eBay, MySpace, and other local websites, Oodle allows users to find your listing all on a single platform.
H1Ad is also one of the fastest-growing classified ads today. Aside from listings your products, the site also allows you to view articles about helpful business tips online.
OLX, which means OnLine eXchange, is a site that allows users to create classified ads for free. It has over 200 million active users around the world every month.
The AdvertiseEra website allows you to create an ad for all various products. Whether it be make-ups, dresses, computer hardware, or toys, aside from these, if you are also engaged in other businesses like baby-sitting, real estate, repairs, you can also list them here.
It is important to take advantage of these free and easy-to-use local classified ads websites so you can reach more potential buyers for your products and earn more traffic on your website.
3- Use other online selling platforms.
Selling on online platforms can also help drastically increase your sales. If you’re not sure what online platforms you can use to sell your products for the most money, here’s some of them:
Amazon is an excellent platform for selling almost everything brand new for a broad reach.
eBay is already a trusted name when it comes to selling online. This is where customers usually go to buy something for a lower price.
Shopolop is an online marketplace that is famous for gadgets.
With over 26 million active users, Etsy is one of the best online places to sell anything handmade or any craft-related items.
Poshmark is an online platform popular for selling used clothes.
Discogs is specifically built for those who sell products related to music like Vinyl, albums, etc.
RedBubble is one of the best print-on-demand websites to sell art. Suppose you’re an artist who decides to sell your artwork online. In that case, you can use RedBubble to upload your artwork and have it printed on several types of materials and reproduction prints like stationery, stickers, and apparel.
Swappa is an online marketplace for buying and selling mobile devices like mobile phones and tablets.
Choosing the best online platform where you can sell your products can be crucial as most of these websites incur a fee so you can use them fully, and some are built for specific products. So you need to choose the best online platform for your products.
4- Use your Social Media platforms.
Social Media Marketing is one of the effective strategies any seller can use. Using your Social Media accounts to connect with your audience, find potential buyers, build your brand, increase your sales, and drive website traffic. Marketing your products through Social Media allows you to engage with your potential clients in whatever social media platform they are present in, like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and even some new platforms like TikTok.
Through Social Media, you are able to create engaging content like videos, news, or exciting trends about your products to drive potential buyers to your website. Or you can directly post photos of your products with descriptions on your account.
Use Facebook marketplace
One of the most successful and most used Social Media platforms nowadays is Facebook. It has a total of 2.4 billion active users. Originally, Facebook is famous for connecting with friends and family. But it has already expanded from socializing to also business making. In 2016, Facebook had launched its Marketplace and has, since then, been one of the most popular online selling platforms.
It will cost you zero to sell on Facebook because all you need is a valid Facebook account. If you don’t have a Facebook account, you can sign up using a valid email or mobile number. Selling on Facebook is very convenient to use. You can do it with any of your devices like your mobile phone, tablet, or laptop. This means you can manage your shop, sell your products, or talk to your customers everywhere.
If you think of selling through Facebook Marketplace, here’s how:
● Create a valid Facebook account if you don’t have one. Put your complete name and do not use an alias, or you might not be able to attract buyers. Make sure to have your email address verified as well so you can use all the functions available.
● Create a listing for each of your products. You can do this by selecting Marketplace from Facebook’s dropdown menu and then clicking the “Create New Listing” button. Choose the correct Listing Types on the provided options.
● Add all needed details like photos, descriptions, and prices. Upload at least one photo of your products. You can also choose to upload up to 10 images. Put a title for your products and the selling price, then select which category your product is under. You must also opt to disclose the condition of your products if it is new or used. Put a little description about your products and choose your correct location.
● Once the information is complete, click “Publish” to finish listing your item. Once published, your listing is now live and can be seen by everyone.
Facebook Marketplace provides sellers ratings that are visible to everyone. Speaking with your buyers is done through Facebook Messenger, and payment can be made through Facebook Pay. On the other hand, you can also choose other payment methods like Paypal.
5- Decide on your Pricing
When doing business online, you have to always keep in mind that you’re not the only one who uses the online platform to sell; other business owners and even big brands sell online. So in pricing your products, you have to consider your competitors. Do a little research from the different businesses that sell products similar to yours, and base your pricing. If you’re not sure if your products will sell online or not, gather helpful information about what price usually sells and what doesn’t. This will help you in creating a pricing strategy for your online business.
And when you choose to sell online, always be transparent and consistent with your price. Make sure to put the correct cost on your website or on the online platform you choose to use so buyers can easily see it. Remember, buyers are going online for convenience, so you must give them the comfort they want by putting all the information they need to see at one glance, including the price.
6- Increase organic traffic to your website by SEO
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is the process of increasing the visibility of your website when people search for products related to your business in search engines like Google, Bing, and others. Put, if you are selling make-ups in California, the goal is when buyers search for make-ups for sale in California, your product listing will be at the top of the search results. The better visibility your website or a listing has in search results, the more likely you are to attract customers to your business. SEO is not easy, and it requires some knowledge. But the good news is there is already a lot of SEO courses available online. Or, if you have the extra money, you can also hire your SEO Specialist.
7- Have a quality customer support
Doing business or selling your products online should be convenient for you and your buyers. You should be easy to be contact and quick to respond to queries. These buyers are expecting quality customer service from you, which means you always have to be professional. Building a rapport with your customer is one of the top priorities when selling online. If you have good customer support, these customers will be coming back to your store.
Selling online is not easy, and it requires knowledge, patience, and perseverance. So if you’re determined about selling your products online, keep these tips in mind and watch your online business grow.