- By Derik Mansfield
- Published 09/11/2010
Step 1: You need to ask yourself some questions, such as: How much capital can I devote to this business? How much time can I commit to this business? Do you possess all the knowledge that is necessary to run a profitable, or will you have to hire or outsource to meet your needs? How you answered these questions will determine what type of business you can get into. I had just quit my job to go back to school full time, moving across the country in the process. So I didn’t have a lot of money I could risk, I didn’t have a lot of time to commit, and I’ve never ran a business before. Step 2: Decide one what type of business you are going to run, based on your own unique circumstances. Remember the goal is to be profitable, don’t get married to any particular idea for a business. Because of my situation, I decided the best option for me would be to set up a e-commerce website selling drop shipped products. It cost very little capital to start one, I didn’t have the overhead costs of a brick and mortar store, it could be nearly automated once it was set up, and I didn’t have to handle any inventory. Drop shipping has it’s downside of course, this is just what was best for my situation and may not be best for you. Step 3: Research! Research the products you are selling, research your competition, research your target market. You want to make sure your business idea going to be profitable before you spend a lot of money trying to make your business a reality. I spent a lot of time researching different suppliers, demand for the products and the competition before I would decide to sell something. Step 4: Become a legal entity. This is an important step if you want to work with other legitimate business. I formed an Limited Liability Company (LLC). This allows me to work with real drop ship suppliers. Step 5: Set up shop. Whether this is a brick and mortar store, an office, or a website. I set up a website using Shopify.com, as I didn’t possess the knowledge to do this on my own, and I didn’t have the money to pay to have one built for me. Step 6: Market your store/services to increase your business. You may offer the best products, but how will anyone know if you don’t advertise? I used social media, pay per click, email and some other methods to drive traffic to my website. Step 7: Continually improve your business. This is an ongoing process that will never be completed. Building relationships with your customers takes time. To be a truly successful business takes some time and effort. I do A/B testing on my advertising campaigns to improve effectiveness. I analyze data on visitors to improve my site layout, products offerings etc. I try and give my customers a bunch of cool and useful tools or gifts to build goodwill and relationships with them. Tips: Be honest; with you customers, with other businesses, and of course with yourself. Know what you are getting yourself into before you commit a lot of money only to find out it won’t be successful. Emulate those who are successful. Don’t rip off their ideas, but see what they do successfully, and try to incorporate that into your business with your own twist. Resources: DropShip – Learn how to start your own drop shipping business.
Entrepreneur with experience in both the drop shipping and internet marketing industries. My goal now is to help people get started with their own drop shipping business.
by Derik Mansfield
This article has been added to your ‘Articles to Read’ list.