How to Start Online Business in India with Minimum Investment
What if we tell you that you can start an online business in India even you have limited resources?
There are multiple online business sites existing in the present business-scape. Yet, only a few of them can attract buyers.
There is a gamut of online business opportunities in the present business-scape and the growth rate is envious.
Since the scope is super-colossal, we are here to give you the best of the best ideas to start an e-commerce business and grow online.
In order to have a successful online retail business, here are some tested and trusted rules that you need to follow.
Firstly, you need to find a business idea which is suitable for your business requirements and profitable together. You need to work hard to implement the ideas.
The future of E-Commerce in India could be the next big market shift based on the evolving user behavioral pattern.
India is one of the fastest-growing E-Commerce and the revenue from the sector is expected to touch US$ 120 million marks in 2020.
The increasing number of smartphone users and internet users (in particular) is showing some great prospects for online marketers in India.
These are some proven steps that you need to follow while setting up your business online-
- Get a business plan and model
- Curate attractive copy with the saleable
- Develop a user-friendly website
- Hire an SEO professional to drive traffic to your site
- Connect and follow-up with your customers via email
- Boost your earning through back-end sales and upselling
Setting up an online business can be advantageous in many ways. You never know how the business will profit you unless you start it.
Coming up with a unique business idea is easy but the execution involves a lot of hard work. Here are some advantageous facts of having an E-Commerce business in India:
a) Increasing demand: You can’t deny the fact that the model buying-selling is no longer the same as it used to be before 5-6 years. The e-commerce market is rapidly pacing at the rate of 51% Y-O-Y basis in India- that’s the highest in the world.
b) Bigger investment: The recent upsurge in the digital marketing landscape has acquired a healthy investment flow into the E-commerce sector. Many new players have made their mark with innovative business approaches thereby defying the traditional marketing module.
c) Numerous opportunities: India is quickly developing into a leading global hub for a start-up In response to flexible FDI policies, governmental initiatives like Digital India, Start-up India, and most importantly easy internet access fed by Reliance Jio.
An in-depth market analysis is strongly recommended before you dive into this highly competitive market. Before starting your career as an individual entrepreneur a proper marketing understanding and consumer analysis will always give you an upper hand.
Take a look at the do’s and don’ts of digital marketing for E-commerce
At an initial stage, don’t aim to sell oodles of products with a newly developed E-commerce platform.
Without a rock-solid plan don’t just jump into building a website.
Customers do get distracted by multiple pop-ups. Don’t just spam them.
There should be no place for assumptions while developing a business strategy.
Things you must do for developing an E-Commerce store
As per the Research Marketers, the global E-commerce market likely to grow at a CAGR of 19.42% during the period of 2016-2020.
Develop an E-commerce site to showcase a unique set of products.
The site should be easy to navigate
Prepare a quickly accessible email list.
Provide quality product image and showcase relevant product info (price, features, etc.)
Focus on consumer-oriented offers rather than competition-oriented offers.
10 Steps to start an E-Commerce business in India
Here are the 10 Steps to start an e-commerce business in India even with a narrow budget.
1) Sketch a compact E-Commerce business model
Much before setting up an E-Commerce store, you should draft a business model base on market research, audience analysis, and competitor analysis. Accordingly, you need to figure out the marketing strategy, execution plan, and financial plan in tandem.
Chalk out a value proposition
Creating a smart and detailed value proposition is a good measure to identify the accuracy of your business idea. You must write it in a way so that the potential business audience/investors can understand the whole idea even within a minute. Once you are satisfied with your approach, take a step forward towards developing a website.
Know your product well before featuring them online
The choice of product is really important along with the platform you chose to sell it out. Platform plays a key role because either you sell our product/services on your website or on the market place. Surprisingly, selling the products on the marketplace soars in popularity as sellers can list their respective products on multiple marketplaces at the same point in time.
There are multiple popular marketplaces such as Flipkart, Amazon, Snapdeal, Shopclues, PayTM available in the market. The seller has to be equipped with the terms and conditions of these given platforms in order to make the best out of them. Always remember, a successful E-commerce business should essentially have a good blend of the right ingredients.
However, there are multiple varieties of E-commerce websites-
Business to Business.
Business to Customer.
Business to Admin.
Without a proper understanding of the business type and its proposition setting-up, an E-Commerce store will lead you nowhere.
More than anything your choice of product needs to be high-on-demand from the Indian market perspective.
Market research can only get you the true inside knowledge
The market analysis gets you the bird’s eye view of your competitors’ activities. It gets you the real industry insight based on your target audience demographics. Use market research tools like SimilarWeb, Ahrefs, SEMrush, Ubersuggest, Spyfu to make the research easier.
Again, the million-dollar question is where you should start? Here’s the quick checklist-
Choose the product/service that you plan to offer.
Have a close look at the market demand for the product.
Analyze your competitors and track their performances.
Find out the market need which has not been fulfilled yet.
Know your customer’s psyche through surveys either via phone or personal visits.
Follow the dynamics of leading online business model
Apart from the capital invested in the core business areas, there are multiple other related costs that you need to consider before setting up an online business in India. However, the cost varies from product to product. Here are some common costs incurred by online business in India-
Market analysis cost
Website design-development cost
Email Marketing Service
Product manufacturing cost
Warehouse operating cost
Accountant and financial fees
Rent and utilities
In order to operate a smooth inflow, you should make different provisions for money.
Legal formalities related to business set-up
Check whether all the required legal formalities are duly fulfilled before you start running an E-Commerce business in India. Determine the structure of your business such as sole proprietorship, Joint Venture, Limited Liability Partnership (LLP), or a Company format.
Make sure your business has a unique tax identity
Once you are done with the business structure, the next important step is to inquire about tax return details. Whether it’s a co-op proprietorship or partnership filing an I-T return on time and having a tax ID number is necessary. While sole proprietors can file I-T returns with the social security numbers despite having tax ID numbers.
Get the essential permits and licenses to run an online business
Whether it’s a general or an online business you need to have the necessary license and permission from the respective authorities. Again, it varies from city to city. For example to run a property portal you need to have a license from the state real estate regulatory authority.
Now you are all set to build your online E-commerce website
1. Before you set-up, your own online E-commerce store decides upon whether you want a self-hosting site or you want to outsource it.
It all depends on the pattern of your business. For example, a self-hosting website is profitable for the elementary forms of E-commerce business in India. For example- any article posting or to be precise content related websites can be run on self-hosting.
Whereas for a complex E-commerce business outsourcing is the best bet. For an E-commerce store hiring professionals will help you out with a smooth-operative, high-performing website. With a limited resource adopting the former option would be a real buy.
Once you know what the website is all about, choose the domain and a suitable hosting plan from sites like Hostgator, GoDaddy, etc. From these sites, you will get the option to directly install the CMS (Content Management System) which serves as a good base to manage a website for beginners.
You can also get options from WordPress (free). For complex options choose Magento or Shopify (paid). The latter option has more in-built tools supporting E-commerce requisites. You need to hire a professional for customizing and maintaining these sites in the future.
2. Once the website hosting is done the next step is to upload the products and service details. Make sure you are uploading relevant content against your product/s:
Provide exact details and specifications about India’s quick-selling products including the pictures.
Add ‘Mission and Vision’ of the company and its difference from the adversaries.
Include business history and personal info of the company.
Keep space for adding more options such as blogs, portfolios, features, pricing, etc. in the ‘menu’ category.
Provide an engaging and fast operating cart with details defined check-out gateway.
- It’s essential to work on the SEO part of your business website.
A full-stack E-commerce website is incomplete without a professional SEO service. Both on-page and off-page SEO is vital. The choice of keywords determines the searching prospect and the search relevance of the website. SEO professionals embed keywords with tools like- Google keyword planner, SEMrush, Workstream, etc.
Keep inbound and outbound links on the website. Make sure out-links are directed to authoritative websites. If the website has a similar business proposition it can give you a strong backlink. Most importantly, Google loves those websites and gets them a good SERP ranking that has strong backlinks.
Wait, have you drafted your marketing strategy?
Whether it’s online/offline- business promotional needs a full-proof marketing strategy. Without promotion, people won’t know about it. Here are some essential elements to have a successful online marketing strategy-
- Eye-catching design
- Advertisement approaches
- Email marketing techniques
- Website optimization
- Analytic and online traffic analysis
- PR management
- On the page, Off-page SEO
- Social Media Marketing
From the said elements here have highlighted upon 2 important activities-
Social Media promotion: These days visitors mostly seek a strong social media presence after the business website. Social Media doles out the biggest interactive platform from both the buyer and the seller standpoint; make the best out of it.
Reach out to your prospective buyers with an active Facebook business page.
Identify the right platform to promote your product. If you belong to the following industries such as Fashion, Tourism, Food you must have an active Instagram and Pinterest account.
YouTube is another effective social platform for generating awareness and building connections through audio-visual interaction.
Utilize these platforms to keep your customers updated with the offers, new launches, and any other business info which you think they should know.
Earn from AdSense
Running ads on a website is always a good idea to generate money for your online business in India. Here are the steps that you should follow to generate revenue from Adsense.
Join an affiliate network.
Apply for multiple affiliate member programs in particular. (ShareASale, Commission Junction, ClickBank, etc.)
Push for the affiliate program that holds a decent reputation and offers a maximum payout. (e.g., Web Hosting or Payday Loans)
Open an account in Google AdWords. (Use free coupons)
Make sure that your promotion campaign has been framed around relevant keywords. (Using longtail keywords has add-on advantages)
Your ads will show up on leading PPC search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo, etc.
Your targeted audience will click on those ads and cracks the deal.
In this course, you will learn how to make money from Google AdWords as well as earn commission by means of affiliate networks that guarantees the deal of best-selling online products in India.
Test and Up the website
Now that you are done with all these parts, time to have a test run of your website to check out the loopholes. Once you fix these issues, you are all set to launch your website.
These are the proven rules to follow while setting-up and operating an E-commerce site in India.
Again, nothing can guarantee success. At the end of the day, it’s your business and you have to work hard to implement these ideas.