Having the right plan can help a business stand out in a crowded field

The global ecommerce market has been growing rapidly ever since the turn of the millennium when internet usage really started to take off. In 2017 worldwide retail ecommerce sales reached $2.3 trillion and are expected to more than double to $4.8 trillion by 2021. That demonstrates a lot of potential for any business wanting to enter the ecommerce market, but also plenty of established competition. To successfully start your journey into the world of ecommerce, there are a few essential steps to follow.

Choose a Niche

Amazon dominates the ecommerce market, eBay has the second-hand sector cornered and the likes of Etsy champion handmade and vintage ecommerce. It would take years to get anywhere near close to challenging any of them and there’s no point starting an ecommerce company that already has lots of established competition. Instead, find a niche by focusing on a particular product or industry. It could just be selling lots of variation of the same product but positioning yourself as an expert.

Do Your Research

Whether you have direct competition or not, researching what other ecommerce companies are doing is vital. This way you can see what they’re doing well, what they’re not doing well and find a way to differentiate your business. It’s also important to research suppliers, to get the best deals, and your target audience to see what their wants and needs are. This can highlight a gap in the market your competitors may be missing.

Prepare a Business Plan

Whatever type of company you run, a business plan is required. This is where all your ideas and ambitions will be brought together. It should lead the direction of your business, outlining ways to reach new customers, avoid risk and grow. Using competitor research, supplier information and more, you should be well on the way. Don’t forget to choose an appropriate business name, domain, website and logo, then register your business and apply for any required licences.

Outsource Logistics

In order to be successful you need to keep customers happy. One of the most important ways to do this is by ensuring they have plenty of delivery choice and that the products they order arrive on time and in top condition. From tracked to large parcel delivery, the easiest way to achieve this is by outsourcing to a professional courier and/or delivery firm.

Review and Improve

When your new ecommerce company has been in business for a month or so, it’s time to review the performance. You should have outlined goals in your business plan and can compare these against where your firm is at. Where there are successes, use these to build on, while where there are areas of concern you will need to make improvements to avoid further trouble.

Despite its size and competitiveness, with proper planning, a strong idea and hard work, it’s possible to successfully crack the ecommerce market.