February 17, 2023
How to Start an E-Commerce Business With Bang - Beginner's Guide
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Richard Wu
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Six Months back, I heard from my pseudo-millionaire college friend that he was starting an ecommerce business.

“It's easy, my friend. 10K BUCKS and some Asian freelancers, you are good to make a million dollars annually!”

Guess What? He is looking for a job now.

Creating an e-commerce business account and learning how to start an e-commerce business is one thing, but turning it into profit is a BIG GIANT hassle that most don't undertake and fail miserably.

But don’t worry. I have come across a TIME-TESTED & PROVEN method that helps in learning how to start an ecommerce business with great chances of success.

I call it: “8 Steps to create a profitable ecommerce business”

Here it goes:

1. Analysing Market

After starting an ecommerce business for a product, the first step is understanding the market.


The market always needs more. It always craves something new. A new product that fills the gap.

Analysing Market.jpg

Thus, you must ensure that your product satisfies the market's needs. You must conduct market research to check whether your product is suitable for the market.

So, Here are some steps to help you conduct market research for your e-commerce business:

  • Identify your target market: The first step is identifying your target customers. It includes understanding their demographics, buying habits, pain points, and preferences.

  • Conduct competitor research: Research your competitors to see what they offer, their strengths and weaknesses, and what makes them successful. It will give you an idea of what to do to stand out in the market.

  • Gather market data: Collect data on market size, growth, trends, and consumer behavior. This information can be found through secondary sources such as industry reports, market research firms, and government agencies, as well as through primary sources such as surveys and focus groups.

By researching and analyzing market trends, you can better understand your target market, consumer needs, and competition. This information can inform your business strategy and make data-driven decisions to drive growth and success for your e-commerce business.

Learn Unit Economics

After you have decided what product to market, you need to learn its unit economics.

*Unit economics is about analysing the cost of manufacturing a single unit of your product, how much you spend on its marketing and supply, and how much is left as a margin.*

So, like if you sell a t-shirt at $50, its unit may look as

  • Manufacturing Cost: $10

  • Branding:$5

  • Shipping:$8

  • Margin:$27

By doing this maths, you can learn how to optimise your business and give it a competitive edge over others.

Use Google Trends

You can also use Google Trends, an effective tool to analyse the market.

Here’s everything you need to know about it.

“Google Trends is a free tool provided by Google that allows you to see how frequently a particular search term is entered relative to the total search volume across various regions of the world, and in various languages. It can be useful for market research as it can provide insights into consumer behaviour, market trends, and competition.”

Here's how to start an ecommerce business with the use of Google Trends:

  • Choose a search term: Start by deciding what you want to research. It could be a product, service, industry, brand, or any other term related to your market.

  • Enter the search term into Google Trends: Once you've chosen your search term, enter it into the Google Trends search bar.

  • Review the search volume: Google Trends will display a graph showing the search term's relative popularity over time. You can use this information to see if there has been a recent increase or decrease in interest and determine if it's a good time to enter the market.

2. Sourcing Your Product

After analysing the market, you need to source your product from a vendor.

Sourcing Your Product.jpg

Well, it may be a challenging task to do. Like, there are thousands of vendors out there.

But, still, there are several ways to find a source for your product.

For Instance;

  • Networking: Reach out to your network of friends, family, and acquaintances to see if they know of any potential suppliers. You can also attend trade shows and events to meet new suppliers and manufacturers.

  • Online directories: Use online directories, such as Alibaba and ThomasNet, to search for suppliers and manufacturers. These directories allow you to search for suppliers based on specific product categories, locations, and other criteria.

  • Trade organisations: Join your industry to meet potential suppliers and manufacturers. These organisations can also provide information about industry standards and best practices.

  • Direct outreach: Contact companies that manufacture similar products and ask if they would be willing to work with you. You can also reach out to companies that provide raw materials for your product and ask if they have any recommendations for suppliers.

When choosing a supplier, it's important to consider factors such as quality, price, delivery time, and customer service.

You may also want to request samples and research the supplier's reputation before entering a long-term agreement.

3. Choosing a Name for Your Business

After sourcing products, the next step is to name your business.

Choosing a Name for Your Business.jpg

It is an easy process. After all, you have to give your business a name.

But, for your information, while learning how to start an e-commerce business, Choosing a name for your ecommerce business is an important decision, as it can greatly impact the success of your brand.

“Lays wouldnt be a success, if it was called Xlays. That’s because Xlays sound like a software agency or a stock brokerage.”

But, Here are some tips to help you choose a killer name for your ecommerce business:

  • Keep it simple: Choose a name that is easy to spell and remember. Avoid names that are too complex or hard to pronounce.

  • Make it memorable: Your name should stick in the minds of your customers, so choose something memorable and catchy.

  • Avoid using abbreviations or numbers: Names that are too complex or contain abbreviations or numbers can confuse your customers.

  • Test it out: Get feedback on your name from friends, family, and potential customers to see if they find it appealing and memorable.

Want Some Examples?

  • Amazon (One of the largest and most successful ecommerce companies, Amazon's name is simple, memorable, and easy to spell).

  • Etsy (A popular marketplace for handmade and vintage items, Etsy's name is a play on the word establishment).

These names are memorable, easy to spell, and relevant to the businesses they represent. They also help to establish the brand and set the tone for the company.

4. Selecting an E-commerce Platform

After choosing a name, you need to select an e-commerce platform for your business.

Selecting an E-commerce Platform.jpg

Choosing an ecommerce platform is critical for your online business as it can impact your ability to grow and scale. Here are some factors to consider when choosing an ecommerce platform:

  • Scalability: Choose a platform that can grow with your business and handle increased traffic and sales as your business expands.

  • Customization: Look for a platform that offers customization options to create a unique and professional online store that matches your brand and business needs.

  • SEO Optimised Platform: SEO Optimization is a major advantage you should look for in a platform. It enables you to optimise your product to appear in better search ranking and ultimately sell better.

  • Payment options: Make sure the platform you choose integrates with the payment options you want to offer, such as credit cards, PayPal, and other payment gateways.

  • Customer service and support: Choose a platform with good customer service and support, as this can be crucial in case you encounter any issues or have questions.

Ultimately, the best ecommerce platform for your business will depend on your specific needs and goals.

It's a good idea to research, compare different options, and try out a few platforms to see which works best for you.

Best Ecommerce Platforms Out there

Many great ecommerce platforms are available today, each with features and benefits. Here are some of the best ecommerce platforms:

  • Shopify: Shopify is a popular ecommerce platform that allows you to build an online store quickly and easily. It offers many features, including customizable templates, payment processing, and inventory management.

  • WooCommerce: WooCommerce is an open-source ecommerce plugin for WordPress that allows you to create an online store using WordPress. It's free to use and offers many flexibility and customization options.

  • BigCommerce: BigCommerce is a powerful ecommerce platform that offers a wide range of features, including payment processing, shipping, and inventory management. It's also highly customizable, making it a good choice for businesses of all sizes.

You can select the platform that suits your budget and other factors.

However, you can select multiple platforms at one time to increase your visibility. It is an important technique to sell more.

5. Choosing the Best Shipping Service:

Selecting an e-commerce platform without selecting shipping services is half the job.


Because the right shipping method for your e-commerce business is important for customer satisfaction and your bottom line.

Choosing the Best Shipping Service.jpg

Here are some factors to consider while learning how to start an e-commerce business and when selecting a shipping method:

  • Shipping speed: Consider the shipping speed that your customers need. If you sell time-sensitive items, you may need to offer expedited shipping options.

  • Cost: The cost of shipping can impact your profit margins, so it's important to compare shipping rates from different carriers and choose the best balance of cost and speed.

  • Carrier reliability: Choose a reliable carrier with a good reputation for delivering packages on time. It will help to minimise customer complaints and reduce the risk of lost or damaged packages.

  • Delivery options: Consider offering different delivery options, such as standard shipping, express shipping, and local delivery. It will give your customers more options and increase their satisfaction.

Some Best Shipping Services

  • FedEx: Offers a range of shipping options, including FedEx Ground, FedEx Express Saver, and FedEx Overnight.

  • UPS: Offers a range of shipping options, including UPS Ground, UPS Next Day Air, and UPS Worldwide Express.

6. Marketing Your Business

There are several effective ways to market your business, including:

Marketing Your Business.jpg

  • Content marketing: Content marketing allows you to create valuable and shareable content that engages readers and promotes your business.

  • Social media marketing: Social media marketing allows you to produce brand posts that create awareness and engage customers.

  • Search engine optimization: SEO optimization helps rank your website above the rank in Google. That way, you get more visitors from Google.

  • Email marketing: Sending targeted, personalised emails to a list of subscribers to build relationships and drive sales. Determining the needs of your customers and approaching them with personalised solutions. You can also take the help of events to generate special discounts and reach your target customers. Lastly, start a royalty subscription for your customers interested in buying your services for the long term.

7. Getting Help from Virtual Assistants

Virtual assistants (VAs) can play a significant role in helping e-commerce businesses run smoothly and efficiently. Here are some ways virtual assistants can help:

Getting Help from Virtual Assistants.jpg

  • Customer Service: Virtual assistants can handle your business inquiries. They can look for customer issues and help them in tracking their orders.

  • Order Processing and Management: VAs can help process orders, update inventory levels, and generate shipping labels. It can allow business owners to focus on other tasks and improve the overall customer experience.

  • Marketing and Social Media Management: With virtual assistants, you can start social media marketing by creating and scheduling posts, managing paid advertising campaigns, and monitoring social media mentions.

  • Data Entry and Management: VAs can assist with data entry, database management, and product catalog updates, which can help keep the e-commerce business running smoothly and efficiently.

  • Email Management: Email management is a great task. With Virtual assistants, you can handle a high volume of emails, such as order confirmations, shipping updates, and customer inquiries. It can reduce the burden on the business owner and improve response times.

Virtual assistants can help e-commerce businesses improve efficiency, reduce workload, and provide better customer experiences.

8. Evaluating Business Strategies

After launching a business, spending on marketing, and doing sales, what’s left is evaluating the business.

Evaluating Business Strategies.jpg

It's essential to learn how to start an e-commerce business.

You must evaluate your business strategies to get maximum output with minimum spending. It is called business optimization.

Here are some key metrics you can use to evaluate your e-commerce business:

  • Traffic: Track the number of visitors to your website and the source of that traffic (e.g., organic search, referrals, paid to advertise).

  • Conversion Rate: The conversion rate measures the number of visitors who make a purchase compared to the total number of visitors to your site. Improving the conversion rate is critical to growing your business.

  • Gross Margin: You need to consider optimising your business to have maximum gross margin over its sales.

  • Customer Satisfaction: Track customer satisfaction through surveys, reviews, and other metrics to understand how well you are meeting the needs and expectations of your customers.

  • Inventory Management: Track inventory levels and turn rates (the number of times inventory is sold and replaced in a given period) to ensure you have the right products in stock and minimise the risk of stockouts.

By regularly monitoring these metrics, you can make data-driven decisions to improve your e-commerce business and achieve your goals.


As I said earlier, it's easy to TALK, TALK, and TALK about business — just like my friend looking for a job now — but a lot harder when it is about making it profitable. I hope that what I have written as “Steps for Making a Profitable Business” will help you to turn your business into a profitable one.