Selling online can be tricky, but not if you follow the right steps.
Have you ever wondered how people make their own products?
Or even launch their own brand?
Yes? I was in the same boat. Thinking wow!
Until i learnt, that it’s not as difficult as my mind makes it sound.
But HOW was my big question.
Well let me tell you a secret, I am a product owner of 2 products in the market today, all designed and manufactured under me!
And to be honest, it’s not rocket science.
Trust me. You can do it too.
I’m no rich person – However, I didn’t break the bank whilst launching my own brand product either.
This is how I did it (probably how majority of business owners do so to)
Keep on reading…
What Is Needed To Design Your Own Product – How To Sell Online
Learning how to sell online can be daunting. It’s actually not.
We will lay out the guidelines required to start selling anything online.
Whether that’s your own product, or a ready manufactured product. The steps are similar.
What To Sell Online
First and foremost, you need to decide what you want to sell online.
The best way to do this is by finding the right product for your customer.
You could make an amazing product but if there is no demand for it in the market, who will buy it?
This is why you need to see what your customers want. From there build or wholesale purchase the product/products.
Products can include:
- Physical Products
- Digital products
How To Find Products To Sell Online
With the aaialbility of several platforms in todays digital world, it can help make the search alittle easier.
- Use Google Trends – This shows what products are being purchased the most and why has been trending for a while. From here you can source that product or add a spin to it and find a supply chain to brand it for you.
- Keyword Research – This can help show what people are actually searching for when finding a product they want.
- Spy on your competitors (such as the big stores) and see what they outsell the most.
- Sell your passion – There is always room for passion, that’s because passion sell’s itself. If you believe in a product yourself, it will be 100x easier to sell it onwards.
How To Source Or Design A Product
Source A Product To Sell Online
The easiest option is to source a product from a wholesale manufacturer.
It’s quicker than designing and running through the production checks, as that part is already done for you.
You can source a product at a wholesale cost or dropship cost.
Wholesale means agreeing with your supplier to purchase in a large bulk.
Dropship means purchasing one item at a time with the manufacturer handling the shipping and handling costs too.
You can use outsourcing sites such as Aliexpress or Alibaba to purchase your items from.
Here are some top sites you can dropship from too.
Design A Product To Sell Online
There are 2 ways you can design your own product.
You either need a manufacturing company, someone who can make it for you, ideally a factory warehouse.
Or you can design and manufacture the product yourself. (paintings, wall art, hand made designs etc.)
Think of your brand product and a name to go with it.
Get a logo designed for your soon to be company and set out some targets.
In the past I sold face masks on Ebay.
From there I got the idea to make my own, brand it and sell it!
I sourced my items from Alibaba.
Alibaba is a wholesale website where you can bulk buy items at a wholesale price. I then would sell them on eBay for some profit.
Once I found a trusted supplier, I contacted them to see if they would be willing to make a facemask product with my brand name on it.
I told them to send me samples so I could test them out and choose which one I wanted my brand name to be on.
Do note, I chose a pretty simple route to becoming an entrepreneur.
It’s easier when a product is already produced, tested and certified, rather than making a product from scratch, which would involve choosing ingredients, getting the product lab tested and even authenticating the product just before it can lawfully be sold, (now that’s some serious business).
What I realised is, you don’t have to spend a fortune to make money in return.
Things To Consider When Selling Online
- China is quiet a few hours ahead of the UK, so when we wake up, it’s their afternoon and in our evening it’s there midnight, so you have to work out a time in between which is best for you both to connect.
- Always ask your supplier if they are willing to put your brand name on the product first MENTIONING your quantity. Sometimes suppliers are not willing to brand a low quantity order.
- Consider your costs such as packaging and delivery before setting a selling price.
Choose Where To Sell Online
The TOP four ways to sell online are:
- Ecommerce – Shopify, BigCommerce or Wix
- Marketplace Platforms – Amazon, eBay or Etsy
- Social Media – Facebook selling and Instagram
- WordPress – via the Woocommerce selling plugin.
You can either sell on one of these platforms or on a variety, the choice is yours.
Things to calculate when working out the retail price for your product before you start selling online.
When ordering products from abroad, bare in mind there is also a shipping fee and a taxes charge.
Calculate the charges you would have to pay the selling platform your using.
I would sell mine on eBay so a 10% charge would go to them every time I sold a product. Any top ups are extra, for example if you wish to advertise your product on eBay too, they take an extra fee out from the final monthly bill.
Also calculate the charges your online wallet provider will take.
I used Paypal who also take a percentage fee from the final amount deposited.
Along with that I had to calculate my shipping charges to the customer once an item was sold and how much that would cost. Should I offer first class or second class, you decide then deduct.
Il break it down for you with my example.
I retailed my product at $12,99, so….
- My branded product cost $3
- Shipping for that item to the UK cost me around $1
- eBay fees – $1.30
- Paypal fees $0.65
- 1st class royal mail delivery – $1
- In total costing me $6.95, meaning my profit was around $5.
NOT FORGETTING to deduct the cost to buy some envelopes to ship my product in, however that wasn’t much, as I bulk bought at a discounted price, costing me some pennies each only.
Anything around a $5 dollars profit margin is a great product to start with and you can slowly slowly increase that by building a trusted relationship with the supplier or simply just buying bigger bulks.
If your first timers, (like me) I know it can be hard to dive in to the deep end by cashing out on 1000pc of your chosen product. That could be because your on a budget, or simply just don’t know whether your product will sell. The only way to know is by ordering a smaller sample (costing you higher) and if it sells well then placing a larger second time round order (will be cheaper).
How to check if the suppliers are not fake on Alibaba
Always check the suppliers star ratings when going forward to check their items. Its located in there profile. I’d always recommend doing business or just buying items from either a 4 or 5 star rated supplier. If your still skeptical, you can pay Alibaba directly for the items and until you don’t recieve the items the funds will not be released to the supplier. So ofcourse you have the guarantee that your money is safe.
What to do after your item is manufactured?
So once you receive your item, quality check it one more time.
Get the item listed on your chosen platforms for selling.
Overall making a product of your own, is not rocket science. However it’s the advertising you have to do after to get those sales. OBVIOUSLY without sales there’s no profit.
Build Your Selling Online Strategy
Sketch some ideas on how you want your products to sell.
You can consider:
- What you want to achieve in the first year and profit aims.
- Who are your competitors and how you can outbeat them.
- How can customers find your products and come to you directly. You can consider audience focused ads on social media platforms to bring the right customers in.
- Write keyword focused product descriptions. You have one shot at impressing the buyer.
- Take attractive pictures of your product.
- Trust your product and capture as much positive feedback you can.
Hope this little guide shed some light if you do wish to get your own brand up and running.
Most importantly building trust and rapport is a number one factor in any business.
Leave me a comment below if you have any questions.
18 thoughts on “Selling Online – How To Start Selling Online”
I love your unicorn glitter brushes! And thank you for sharing your insider knowledge with us. Really interesting and helpful!
Aww thank you Karletta! I appreciate your support. X
Honestly I have been really unlucky with some sellers on Alibaba, and it took me too much time and energy to find the right ones that I can trust. Your unicorn brushes are really cute !
Hi Elana:) I totally agree, Alibaba can be hit and miss without the right connections established. Im glad you found some you can trust. Xxx
P.s thankyou 🙂
First of all great product and congratulations of taking the leap to create your own product line.
Hey Jen, Thankyou for your kind words:)
Yours is an inspiring story, and your brushes are so cute. I love hearing success stories like yours and you’ve given us a great ‘how to’ with this post. Now, if I could just come up with a product… 😉
This a great and useful information that can be turned into a course, you know?
aww thanks Ellen. x
Great job! I have always wanted to launch my own product but never knew where to start.
Start here Heather, you’ll smash it. xx
I’ve been curious about ways to go about launching a product, but just didn’t know where to start. Your blog makes it seem less scary and like I could take that next step if I wanted to!
You definitely could Kayla, its not too scary, wishing you every success if you ever do .xx
I had no idea you could launch a product this way!
What an interesting concept. Thanks for sharing. 🙂
Aww thank you 🙂 And yes you can launch a product this way too, how awesome right!
That is so neat! You go girl. Thanks for sharing the steps for how you did this. It may be something so many people are looking into!
Thanks lovely for your kind words. x
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