What You Need to Know Before Starting an eCommerce Business

Launching an eCommerce business is very affordable. Even though you still need to deal with issues like storage and delivery, and properly automate your website, at least you don’t have to lease an actual store and hire people to run it. This being said, it is more than clear that running an eCommerce business is logistically easier than starting a traditional resale business. Still, this doesn’t mean it is easy. On the contrary, there are so many things you need to pay attention to and here are some of them.

1. The right name

First things first, the choice of your business name and your domain name can be vital for your company’s success. People who ended up on your page because they followed some link might not even notice your company or domain name. However, you need to think about those people who will actually look you up online. That is why your domain name (preferably even company name), needs to be short, memorable and free of spelling errors.

2. Adequate platform

The next thing you need to do is find the adequate platform for your business. Your options are numerous, but you should still stick to something that is optimized for eCommerce i.e. something that primarily focuses on online retail. The safest choice here would be to go with something like Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento or even WordPress (WP).

3. Learn more about the field

Another thing you need to keep in mind is that eCommerce tends to be quite a specific field. Even though one can benefit from their previous retail experience, these two fields don’t always necessarily intertwine. Because of this, it is vital that you try and learn as much as you can about some of the most important industry-specific terms which will help you get ready for all the challenges ahead.

4. Choose your business structure

Once you cover the basics, take a closer look at your company structure. Based on your funds, your company will probably have one, two or several owners. This alone will determine your company’s business structure and you will be able to register as a sole proprietor, partnership, LLC or a corporation. This will determine the future of your personal assets, as well as the way in which the IRS will treat your business. Going as a sole proprietor gives you more control but it also makes you directly responsible.

5. Focus on post-launch activities

Finally, you need to keep in mind that your post-launch activities are equally as important as the pre-launch ones. Obtaining your first customer, marketing your store, email marketing, ways of driving traffic and of course using analytics tools need to become the backbone of your business. Furthermore, creating a loyal base of return customers can be crucial for your profit margin, which is yet again where analytics and post-purchase follow-up (in the form of email marketing) come in.


While the above-listed five may seem quite overwhelming to some, they are still just the tip of the iceberg. Some other honorable mentions are finding the right software, stocking your inventory and even finding adequate vendors. Keep in mind that success always comes at a cost and that running a lucrative eCommerce business was never supposed to be simple in the first place. Still, those with enough will and determination will always find a way.

StarterPad Staff

One of the lovely StarterPad staff members has toiled away into the wee hours of the night to write this amazing piece of literature :)