Starting an Online Business

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kasjaws
Posts: 18
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2011 4:37 pm

Starting an Online Business

Post by kasjaws »

How do you go about starting an online business? If you have done so care to share your ideas? I began a website many years ago on web.com when I was selling animal communication services. I also had stores on ebay and bonanzle to sell discount pet supplies.

I researched for a dropshipper in pet supplies and was lucky enough to find a very reasonable one. They provide me with pictures and descriptions of items for my stores and when I make a sale they ship the item directly to my customer. I never have to worry about inventory or shipping. The trick is to find a good dropshipper with items your customers want at prices that are reasonable for your customers and still allow you to make a profit. Be sure to check for any extra charges such as a minimum order charge. Some wholesalers will ship to your customers but charge you a fee upwards of $5-6 if the order does not meet a minimum set dollar amount.

I then purchased business cards, brochures, and mailing items from Vista Print. If you are just starting out Vista Print offers very high quality items at extremely reasonable prices and many are even free in small quantities. I have been very satisfied with the quality. So much so that when they came out with their own web hosting I closed my site at web.com and opened one with Vista Print. I also purchased email marketing services from them.

The next thing I did was to incorporate as a limited liability corporation with myself as the sole owner and employee. I registered it with the state so I could take the losses off my income tax. Then I laid out a very simple business plan. Where was I? Where did I want to go? How was I going to get there? It is very important I think to do this even if it is just a simple couple paragraphs. Lay out a roadmap.

You will want to advertise but again you have to be careful. Google ad words is the best way to start but if you know how to use them, traffic exchange sites can really boost the number of hits your site gets. So if you are using google ad words a lot of hits will push your site up on the first page so more customers will see you.

I have been at this several years now without making an annual profit but I am hoping this will be the year that changes. Care to share what has worked for you?

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