Ecommerce - A Basic Outline to Selling Goods and Services Online

Marilynn Dawson By Marilynn Dawson, 4th Feb 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/2utyuqq5/
Posted in Wikinut>Business>IT & Ecommerce

What is eCommerce?! In a nutshell, eCommerce is the act of selling goods or services over the Internet, delivering those goods or services either via the Internet, or offline means, and then collecting payment in some form. Each of the subjects touched on here have so much more that could be delved into. But this should be a good introduction to help you consider all that is necessary to take your dream and sell it online.

Introduction

What is eCommerce?! In a nutshell, eCommerce is the act of selling goods or services over the Internet, delivering those goods or services either via the Internet, or offline means, and then collecting payment in some form.

Selling over the Internet

In order to sell your product or service online, you need a website. You've probably visited sites for Amazon.com, eBay.com, Walmart.com, iTunes, etc. While their systems are quite refined and very complex, your website can be as simple or as complicated as you desire. One of the myths of eCommerce is that it costs money to get going online. There are actually several sites out there that will let you set up a shop with as many as 10 items, for free! A few other sites will let you sell as many items as you want for free. The cost comes in when you want your own hosting account, your own domain, and your own website. But even then costs can be kept to a minimum with the myriad of free shopping cart software available.

Delivering goods and services

Once you have your website or store set up online, you need a way to get what you sell, to your customers. Ebooks can be delivered by email. However, fancy Valentine's cards need to be sent through the mail. Deciding how your customers will receive your item is important. If shipping costs are involved, you'll need to pass that on to the customer or include it in the cost of your item. Some services such as resume writing or graphics creation can be delivered by email or ftp download. But other services such as car repair, need to be done on site at the person's home or business.

Collecting payment

Ensuring you get paid for the goods or services that you sell, is extremely important. Failure to ensure customers pay you ends up with freebies you might not intend to give. Accepting payment via cash or cheque is possible when your customer pays in person, but online it's best to accept credit card or PayPal. Paypal is almost free, with charges only taking place on completed sales, similar to that of a credit card merchant account, without the merchant account fees tacked onto it. However if you plan to accept creditcard offline as well as online, a merchant account may be better suited to your needs.

Marketing

The last thing to consider when breaking into eCommerce, is getting the word out. With so many businesses online, you need to have a marketing plan in place that you will implement when your store goes live. If you already have an offline customer base, you can begin telling them about your online store months before you go live, so that they are able to visit the day you launch your store.

Conclusion

Each of the subjects touched on here have so much more that could be delved into. But this should be a good introduction to help you consider all that is necessary to take your dream and sell it online.

Tags

Ecommerce, Estore, Online Store, Selling Online

Meet the author

author avatar Marilynn Dawson
I am a computer tech by trade, as well as a Christian author and freelancer. Topics range from devotionals and online safety, to how-to's, family finances, product reviews, and more.

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