The internet has revolutionized the world of retail. What used to require a high upfront cost to build out a store now requires as little as a few clicks and some nice photos to get yourself up and running. Of course selling online is never quite that simple and does require investment in promotion. If you’re ready to dive in as an online retailer there are a handful of solutions at your disposal. Here are a few to help you decide which path you would like to take.
Here are our top 5 online store solutions for small retailers:
Shopify is one of the newest store solutions on the market. This is a good solution for a business who is looking to sell primarily online. Depending on the level you sign up for, Shopify will handle everything from marketing and payments to providing secure checkout and shipping! Shopify allows you to have your store on Facebook, on your website and in person. You can select a theme to match your brand from the hundreds provided.
If you are a maker Etsy may be just what you’re looking for. Opening a Etsy store is free, however you pay $.20 to list a product in the Etsy marketplace. This puts your products in a worldwide store frequented by many, many hipsters on a daily basis. To be successful on Etsy you will likely need to put a small amount of money towards promoting your items in Etsy’s marketplace. There are thousands of sellers on Etsy so it can take some time to get found.
If you are using Square as your credit card processor you can also use them to open an online store. There is no monthly membership fee, but the credit card fees for online sales are a bit higher than in person sales, coming in at 2.9% + $.30/sale. The Square store allows you to select a theme to match your brand and you can manage inventory and products from the Square dashboard. Unfortunately this solution does not allow you to embed the store on your website.
A drag and drop website builder can be a perfect fit for many small businesses. This tool makes it easy to edit your whole website, and offers an affordable ecommerce solution so your store is right on your website. If you’re interested in a drag and drop website, schedule a consultation today and we can get you setup!
For tech-savvy business owners you can choose to build your store on WordPress. This allows you the most room for customization, but also comes with some hidden price tags. WordPress sites require a variety of plugins to run ecommerce and many of them have monthly fees, not including credit card processing fees. You will also need to set up hosting and a custom domain for yourself. However, if you are willing to do the work, a WordPress store can offer a wide range of options and be an excellent solution! (Psst if you’re feeling stuck we would love to help you with your WordPress needs!)
If you have any questions getting your store set up, schedule a consultation today!