Congratulations, you’ve decided on launching an online shop!
The appeal is surely unquestionable: operating a virtual store you can run from anywhere in the world…café, a tropical beach, your home office? But are you still confused regarding the difference between a website and an online shop?
On websites, users consume information and make requests, such as subscribing to the newsletter, sending requests on forms, or making other contact. The online shop is also a website, but with different functionalities, as it allows people to shop and make payments online.
Why Is It Important to Have an Online Shop?
Charmaine sold specialty cakes in her town and the surrounding areas. She often traveled to craft fairs and local stores to sell her products. While she was earning a nice income, Charmaine was exhausted from the pace that was required to keep up with selling.
A friend suggested that she try to set up an online shop instead. This would make it easier for Charmaine to get her cakes in front of more people and if it was successful, she could stop traveling locally.
Charmaine was nervous about the new adventure, but she decided to give it a try. With help from her teenage daughter who was good with technology, Charmaine started a virtual shop and advertised it online.
Within a few weeks, Charmaine began to see a return on the time she’d invested and within six months, she was able to stop traveling. No longer was she out at craft fairs in the elements or worried about running from store to store to make sure her goods were stocked.
Now, she could focus on what she did best – baking her specialty cakes while she let her shop do the heavy lifting and process the transactions.
Advantages to Launching An Online Shop
Yet, we are mindful that eCommerce success depends on four factors — product relevance and quality, eCommerce website performance, pricing strategy, and targeted marketing campaigns.
Nevertheless, whether you sell tangible items like Charmaine did or virtual items like planners, eBooks, or printables you can probably benefit from having an online shop.
Here are a few advantages to setting one up…
Advantage #1: Adopt A Flexible Schedule
Having an online shop means that if a customer wants to make a purchase in the middle of the night, they can. Meanwhile, you’ll continue to sleep soundly and when you do wake up the next morning, you’ll have a new payment notification.
Your new flexible schedule means you can work on your business around your life. If you prefer to work in the evenings and like to spend the afternoons with your preschoolers, then you have that option. If you prefer working first thing in the morning, then you can do that.
With an online shop, you can upload your products at any time and schedule them to go live later. This gives you the ultimate in flexibility when it comes to your schedule.
Advantage #2: Unleashes Your Creativity
An online shop can be a great outlet for creating art. It can also give you a reason to get back into an old hobby you once loved. Maybe you’ve always missed keeping a daily journal and you’d love to try it again. Consider starting a shop for journaling.
Perhaps you have an interest in creating printables. You could create your own adult coloring pages, checklists, or calendars and sell them through your shop.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to your online shop. You can turn your passion into cash and sell almost anything that you like. You can even experiment by putting up just a few items to see what happens.
Once you have the shop set up with some products, you can even expand your offerings. Maybe you started your shop by offering printable stickers, but you have a sudden desire to start designing planners. Since you already have a shop, it’s easy to add a new product or listing and start making sales right away.
Advantage #3: Make Money Online
Another big advantage of having an online shop is that it can allow you to create an additional income stream. Often, building a virtual shop will allow you to experience a small trickle of income. As time goes on, you can grow that trickle into a mighty river of income if you want.
Many people have used earnings from their online shop to achieve goals in other areas of their lives. For example, you might choose to use your earnings to fund a Bahamas vacation for your family. Perhaps you’ll use your earnings to start a college fund for your child or remodel your home. The possibilities really are endless, and it all comes down to is what you want to do with your income.
Advantage #4: Build Your Dream Business
Some people create an online shop with the goal of growing it into a full-scale business complete with employees and a warehouse filled with inventory. Others just want a simple shop that they can keep updated themselves and spend only a few hours working on each week.
There is no wrong or right way to build your dream business. It all comes down to what works best for you and your lifestyle. You might even find that your goals for your business change as you enter different life seasons. For example, if you’re raising small children, then you may not have time to make your business your primary focus. But if your kids go away to school in a few years, you may decide that it’s time to expand your little shop in new ways.
Advantage #5: Finally Enjoy Your Passion
Many people find that building an online shop gives them new focus and energy. They wake up with enthusiasm, ready to tackle each new day because they’re once again feeling fulfilled and passionate about what they do.
If you feel like you’ve just been going through the motions in your life or you’re bored with your current routine, it might be time to consider starting a shop that lets you find your passion again.
For some, having an online business is the one thing they get to do for themselves. For example, if you’re a busy mom and wife, you might feel as if everything you do is for someone else. But your online shop can be something that’s just about something you want to do.
Advantage #6: Hey, You’re The Boss
One of the biggest advantages of creating an online shop is that you become an entrepreneur and get to embrace total control in your business. If you’ve worked a traditional job, then you already know that your options can at times be limited by your boss’ whims, company policy, or client expectations.
But with running your own business, you’re free to make decisions and create policies that benefit you and reflect what you want. This means that you are ultimately responsible for what happens to your shop.
You also don’t have to run your decisions by anyone else. You don’t have to ask a boss for permission when you want to add a new product, adjust prices, or take the day off. When you’re running an online shop, all decisions are in your total control.
Advantage #7: You Can Change Direction
So, you’re working on your shop, and you decide you want to experiment and try something new. You can easily add additional products to your shop without a lot of fuss or without purchasing a lot of inventory. That’s because an online shop allows you to take risks in small ways that can still benefit your business in big ways.
You might even find that you want to totally change the direction of your shop if you find your customer base wants something different than what you originally started to sell. For example, maybe you started selling jewelry but found what customers really want was hand-painted wooden jewelry, a more manageable niche. Having an online shop allows you to pivot and quickly meet this need in the market.
Building An Online Shop Is Fun and Easy
In this article, we identified 7 advantages of creating a virtual store that will allow you to sell your products and build a business you love. The cost of building an eCommerce store is usually low which means that you have the space to experiment and try new things as you go. This means that building your own shop can be fun and enjoyable.
Now is the perfect time to launch an online shop quickly and easily! It truly has never been easier. Learn the steps necessary to successfully start an online store (with our practical guide below).
I would love to know: Are you thinking of starting an online store? Tell us about it!