You are ready to sell your products online and want to get started, but where to begin? Are you the manufacturer of your products or are you planning to resell someone else’s products?
Creating Your Own Brand
If you have your own product that you manufacture it’s much easier to get started selling online. For example if you create custom jewelry and want to sell that through your online store, you are able to set your own price because you know how much it costs you in time and materials to make each piece. With your own product not only can you control pricing, but you control inventory. If you are the manufacturer, you know how much product you need (or have a good idea) during your busy seasons so you can stock up and be prepared when the rush hits. When you manage your own brand, there is no limit to the different types of advertising you can try, all of the following could be appropriate and work well: newsletters, pay per click advertising, content marketing, email outreach and much more.
Becoming a Reseller
You can resell another manufacturer’s products online, but you have to understand the rules of their wholesale arrangement. There can be a number of stipulations/rules with a wholesale agreement, here are some examples:
- You are only allowed to use certain photos on your site
- You are limited to certain types of advertising
- There are pricing restrictions, both floors and ceilings that you must abide by
- Inventory restrictions, you may be limited on how much product you can sell
If you can successfully navigate the rules for a reseller there is plenty of money to be made. It’s worth testing out a few different manufacturers to see which ones stand behind their product and do what they say they’re going to do. After a while if you develop a level of trust, being a reseller is a great way to create a business online.
Don’t Send Your Traffic to a 3rd Party
I got a call yesterday from someone that was just getting started with selling online. They had a created an account at a popular t-shirt site, TeeSpring and were starting to send traffic to their Teespring.com/store URL. They had created a Facebook advertising account and were sending Facebook traffic directly to their TeeSpring URL. This person asked me why did I think the traffic they were sending wasn’t converting? I told them the number one issue was that they were sending traffic to a 3rd party site and not to their own brand. Why is that an issue? I could see on the top of the landing page, there were plenty of links to the main TeeSpring site and once a customer is off your landing page, they are going to navigate the store and buy shirts from other sellers. You are helping TeeSpring by driving sales to their main site and doing very little to build your own brand.
Use Your Own Domain Name for Your Online Store
If you are creating your own product or plan to be a reseller, it’s an absolute must that you register your own URL. We recommend using GoDaddy as a registrar, they are easy to work with and have a simple interface for controlling your domain name.
Where can you find Dropshippers?
Looking for a product to sell? The first place to start is by using Google, searching for products you like and then clicking on the company website to find out if they offer wholesale arrangements. There are also 3rd party sites that specialize in aggregating dropshipper information, here are a couple:
Looking for Excess Inventory or Liquidation Sites?
Another option is for you to purchase excess inventory or find inventory that a retailer no longer wants and purchase it at pennies on the dollar. There a number of sites that have sprung up to accommodate the excess inventory market, here are a couple that we like:
Any questions on how to get started, drop us an email or give us a call and we can help!