Do you want to sell products online? You can set up an online store, but these days you don’t necessarily have to. Whether you are selling through Instagram, eBay, or Depop, there is an endless amount of online marketplaces available to start retailing today.
Selling in online marketplaces
Selling products online is easier than ever. You don’t need a physical store or a large warehouse full of inventory. You don’t even need an online store to sell products anymore, if that’s not your ambition. Used items such as clothes, toys and furniture can easily be sold through online auctions or marketplaces.
You don’t need a physical store. You don’t even need an online store to sell products online!
Not having your own store relieves you of the many laws surrounding e-commerce. You probably don’t have a strict price for your product either, which is why you can let buyers outbid. In addition, online marketplaces and sales platforms are quickly reaching millions of people. So you don’t need to think about marketing strategies when selling on eBay or Facebook Marketplace.
Sell in your online store
You don’t need an online store, but you might want one anyway. Even if your own store is more labor-intensive, it can be more profitable once you gain loyal customers and build your brand. You also don’t have to worry about Amazon or Depop asking for a percentage of the profit.
Starting your own online store might seem difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. For example, you don’t even have to create your own inventory. If you find a dropshipping supplier, they will ship orders directly from their warehouse to your customers.
Building your online store website is also a lot easier than you might think. Of course, you can let a web designer create it for you. But if you don’t want to spend a lot of money, there are several web design platforms that are extremely user-friendly and require no coding.
What products can you sell online?
The type of products you want to sell is completely up to you. Anything is possible, really. Just take a look around your house. Do you have old furniture or other household items in your garage or attic? Or maybe your friends and family have a lot of gifts that they don’t want to sell themselves. Selling them can be a great way to earn pocket money.
You can sell just about anything online.
If you really want to make a living selling products online, you will need more than just old stuff from your attic. So ask yourself: is there something that you are an expert or that you are passionate about? You might know a lot about drones, or people always ask you about makeup. If you know what products you want to sell, it’s time to find a wholesale supplier from whom you can purchase your stock. There are a ton of online wholesale platforms out there, such as BigBuy, Orderchamp, and AliExpress. But you can also go the traditional route and start chatting with wholesale suppliers at trade shows.
Third-party platform outside of your own store
If you’re an entrepreneur at heart, you probably want your own online store. And if you want to earn more than a few extra bucks, this is definitely the way to go. But have you considered selling in your store as well as on third party platforms?
Online marketplaces aren’t just filled with people who don’t want to have to run their own online store. In fact, most of the sellers on these platforms already have their own brands. Why, you will ask me? Because sales platforms attract millions of visitors. It is virtually impossible to get this type of reach in your own online store. You would need to spend almost all of your funds on marketing. And even then it may never happen.
While your own store is aimed at loyal customers, sales platforms are the perfect place to find new audiences. Because online marketplaces have a wide reach, you will be casting a bigger net. Potential customers can find your products more easily on a platform like eBay. And if you use your own packaging or put a discount flyer in your package, they might come to your own store next time. In this way, online marketplaces can attract new customers to your store.
The challenges of selling on platforms like Facebook and Instagram
Third-party sales platforms like Instagram Shopping often operate on a commission basis. This is typically between 1 and 15 percent of the purchase price, depending on the platform. Keep in mind that these selling costs can drastically reduce your profits. But in return, you have a better chance that the item will actually sell.
Even so, selling on online platforms can be more difficult than you think. Facebook Marketplace and eBay, for example, have a huge range of products. You can really find everything on these sites, from second-hand clothes to furniture and appliances. As a result, your item may be lost in the sea of products that these platforms have to offer.
Additionally, customers love to browse online marketplaces. In real life, you probably don’t visit ten different stores for just one product. But online, that can easily be the case. Customers can go to tons of different stores without buying anything. Even though thousands of customers see your product every day, this may not be reflected in the number of orders. So, when you are selling on Facebook and Instagram, you will always have to invest a lot of time in marketing.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Some frequently asked questions about selling products online:
Are you licensed to sell anything online?
Online you can sell anything that you can also sell on the street. It is therefore not a good idea to start an online store selling weapons or endangered animals. In addition, there are certain laws and requirements for online stores in particular. For example: the customer has the right to cancel his order within 14 days.
Can I sell used products?
Of course, millions of people sell second-hand items online. Second-hand clothes are very popular and furniture can also easily find a new owner. As long as the customer knows that what they are buying is used and that you are honest about the faults, there is no problem.
Can I make a lot of money selling products online?
It’s possible, but starting an online store is harder than it looks. Therefore, it is not the fastest or easiest way to make money online. Selling in online marketplaces can be easier, but it has its own unique challenges.