A Guide on How You Can Use Websites to Pay the Bills

8th, November 2017
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In the golden age of ecommerce, it has never been easier to set up and start generating a profit online. If you have a product to sell, or you’re looking to make money from your blog, this post will tell you how you can use websites to help you pay the bills.

Step One: Choose a Niche

As the range of goods and services available online is extensive, you should start off approaching your home business idea with your interests at the forefront. If you have a passion for dance, for example, consider setting up an online store for dancewear and accessories. This will help you solidify your brand messages, as you will already know the kinds of products and ads your audience wants to see.

If you have no particular hobby or interest in mind, and you just want to make a profit as quickly as possible, set up a general store with a generic name. Buy a .com domain name, as these sites carry the most authority with consumers.

Step Two: Research Your Audience

This is arguably the most crucial stage in making money online. You need to make sure you have the market for your business idea. There are many tools you can use to research things like audience demographics, preferred social media networks, even the types of posts audiences prefer.

Collect insights such as the influencers people follow, the publications they read, the products they buy, how much income they have, etc.

Collate this data into one large document and divide your customers into suitable segments. This exercise is essential because not all customers are created equal. Some audience sections will spend more with you than others. Therefore, you must be able to differentiate and encourage buying behaviors that meet your customers where they are in the buying cycle.

Step Three: Set Up Your Site

The number of channels you can sell through is ever-expanding, so you should consider your customers’ needs and your ability to deliver. For example, if you are selling digital products, you can set up on Etsy, or you can self-host through your own store – or both!

You will also need to consider your abilities when setting up. ‘Plug and play’ ecommerce hosts like Shopify can help you get up and running quickly. Platforms like Magento can also be a good option for those with web development skills who may be looking for more customization.

Step Four: Choose Your Products

Once you’re all set up, it’s time to get your shop stocked. You can use a wholesaler (where you buy in bulk and resell), or you can use a drop shipping model. Drop shipping is an excellent option for those starting a business from home. Under these plans, you make a subsequent order, and your supplier handles the inventory and shipping.

With a few clicks, you can import goods into your store to start selling. Make sure you provide detailed descriptions with all of the benefits listed. Use keywords to help you optimize for the search terms your audience will be using to find you.

Don’t forget: it’s worth going to the effort of shooting original product photos. You need to make your shop unique from the rest, so give this step some thorough consideration.

Step Five: Advertise to Your Segments

Regardless of what you’re selling and on what channel, you will need to invest in some paid advertising. Facebook is a great place to start, as the engagement figures are enormous. From your research, refine your ad targeting. Instagram is another excellent platform to use.

With both Facebook and Instagram, you can find apps that allow you sell directly from your social media account. You can also take advantage of the top influencers on these sites and approach them with a personalized pitch and sponsorship opportunity.

The more effort you put into getting the word out, the better off you’ll be. Set a daily budget for paid advertising, research your channels, and look for forums and guest blogging opportunities in your niche.

Step Six: Automate Your Processes

You want to make money as quickly as possible, so make sure you automate things like sales tax collection, record keeping and social media posting using whatever apps and plugins are available through your ecommerce host.

Alternatively, you can choose to hire a virtual assistant to help you post and process orders from your store. Take advantage of the automated help available and concentrate on making engaging marketing content to draw in buyers.

Making money online can be easy, provided you take some time to research your niche thoroughly. Automate the processes as much as you can, and you could start generating a healthy profit in no time.

Victoria Greene

Victoria Greene is a branding expert and writer. She runs a blog called Victoriaecommerce. Here, she likes to share tips to wannabe entrepreneurs looking to start a business from home.