Opening an eshop for selling imported products is more likely to succeed than those that sell domestic products. The reason for this is that foreign products are generally easier to sell online than domestic ones. Apart from offering a wider range of products at lower prices, eCommerce platforms that sell foreign products also benefit from being able to source products from different countries.
We will present the essential steps you should go through on how to open an eCommerce store to sell imported items. Keep reading!
- Product research
- Evaluation of your product ideas
- Opening an eshop for selling: Amazon FBA or Dropshipping
- Place your importing orders
- Steps to start opening an eshop for selling
- Choose an eCommerce platform
- Create a layout for your online store
- Take product photos and create product listings
- Connect your online store to social media sites
- Improve the SEO of your online store
- Set up safe payments and personalize the checkout process
- Organize your online inventory
- Arrange for delivery, pickup, and shipment.
- Create a marketing strategy
- To conclude,
What is currently trending
Taking advantage of emerging trends is a wise method to earn money while opening an eCommerce store, especially if you do so at the beginning of the trend. So, how can you ever learn what is prevalent?
If you use social media frequently, particularly on applications like TikTok, you might get a decent concept of the goods that others are discussing. Which categories are popular? What recent products are people raving about?
Visit the Google Trends “Shopping Trends” site for another option to explore current trends. This is a free interactive tool that displays the top retail categories that are currently trending as well as the top search terms associated with those categories.
Search on Amazon
To obtain inspiration for opening an eshop for selling, you might browse through Amazon’s several “best selling” lists. The Amazon listings like New Releases, Movers & Shakers, Most Wished For, and Gift Suggestions are what you should be looking at. The items mentioned here will be popular and sell well, but they will be easier to compete with than the top 100 best sellers.
Now, look through each of these lists to find new items you would never have considered selling!
These lists include goods that are becoming more and more popular as well as what consumers are currently purchasing. Every hour, this useful information is updated. Once more, the first thing you will notice is the “major categories.” We advise digging further into subcategories to find products with little competition.
Search on Alibaba
Alibaba is a B2B marketplace that many companies and sellers use to identify distinctive products they can private label and sell under their own brands. Alibaba operates in a manner comparable to that of Amazon. You might find a lot of results when you search for any kind of goods you’re interested in.
In order to provide you with some original ideas, they also showcase top products and recent arrivals. Explore the categories and subcategories slowly, just like you would while looking up products on Amazon.
Also, you can search on Aliexpress, which is similar to Alibaba but targeted more at individual consumers than wholesale purchasers.
Attend wholesale trade shows
A great approach to meeting suppliers and manufacturers in person is at trade shows. Also, they are the places where you can physically approach various products, get a firsthand experience with them, and learn about recent market advancements.
Seeing suppliers face-to-face rather than contacting them online through platforms like Alibaba provides you a significant competitive advantage. When you negotiate in person, you may create genuine connections and typically receive the greatest deals.
Evaluation of your product ideas
How do you determine whether certain markets are suitable for selling in once you have found certain goods you are interested in selling? This section will demonstrate how to assess your product ideas and identify prospective competitors.
While selecting a product to sell online, you should take into account the following important factors:
Are clients looking for and buying the item you’re trying to sell? Be sure there is sufficient demand before you enter the market.
- Examine Amazon’s Top Selling Rank
You can still utilize Amazon’s statistics to determine the demand for your product even if you aren’t going to sell it there. A product will typically sell well on other marketplaces if it sells well on Amazon.
Find the “product details” area by scrolling down to a random product page on Amazon. The BSR indicates how well or poorly a product is selling. A BSR this high indicates low sales.
- Look at Google Trends.
By searching for a product’s keywords in Google Trends, you can get an idea of its popularity over time. In this case, I looked up “boat compass.”
The level of interest over the last 12 months may have fluctuated, indicating that it is not a consistently sought-after product.
- Consider the product review dates.
Viewing product reviews — specifically, the dates of the reviews — can give you a good idea of how frequently that type of product is purchased. Since few customers actually leave reviews, those that are recent suggest that there is a respectable level of demand for it.
- Search Engine Keyword Planner
Google Keyword Planner is an additional free Google tool you can use to check how many people are looking for keywords associated with your product. Choose a few keywords that are relevant with your product idea to see what the tool suggests.
The Keyword Planner will display anticipated monthly search volume, competition, and other information.
Although there may be a market for your goods, you also need to take the level of market competition into account. Making your product or online store stand out will be challenging if you have a lot of competition.
- Google Keyword Planner
Use this tool to check the level of competition for a specific keyword in Google AdWords. Together with the predicted keyword bid, Google Keyword Planner will show you how competitive your keywords are.
- Do a search on Walmart.com and Amazon.com.
Look at what’s available on Amazon or Walmart. Do they have numerous reviews? Exist multiple brands for the same product? What do customers have to say about the commodities? Is there still room for development? Do you see opportunities that merit seizing?
Offering an evergreen product is good because there is constant need for it. And certainly, making a profit on a seasonal product is achievable. Simply be cautious about how much product you order for the season and when to order it.
You may use Google Trends once again to discover what times of the year people are searching for a specific item or keyword in order to assess seasonality.
If consumer demand for this product is stable throughout the year, it should continue to sell well in each of the four seasons. If you observe a significant increase during a specific time frame and a flat line for the remainder of the year, this demonstrates seasonality or suggests that it was a passing trend.
When opening an online shop, you must be certain that the product you want to sell will be profitable after evaluating its demand, competition, and seasonality. This includes sourcing your product at a reasonable price and properly pricing the product.
You must consider various fees, such as subscription fees, selling fees, advertising fees, storage fees, and shipping fees, depending on the platform or marketplace you will be selling on.
There is no specific profit margin you should aim for because it varies by business, but we recommend at least a 30-40% gross margin. This will leave some room for a marketing budget, as you will almost certainly need to advertise your products in order to stand out and attract sales.
All of the other aspects we discussed are as crucial, but this is even more so. In relation to your competitors, how would you sell your product? What enhancements can you make to the product itself, your product pictures, and your listing copy?
Also, think about your product’s social media strategy and assess whether it might aid in business growth. To see how other companies in your area are marketing their products, look up their strategies on various social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Tik Tok.
Even if your product is the greatest in its category, how would people find it if you do not market it effectively?
Opening an eshop for selling: Amazon FBA or Dropshipping
The choice of which business strategy to use while selling on Amazon is entirely up to you.
- Dropshipping. If you are looking for how to start an online shop for free, dropshipping seems to be an inexpensive initial investment. But it comes with longer delivery times and limited control over the quality of your products. With FBA, Amazon manages all customer care and fulfillment tasks, and your listings will also receive the Prime Shipping badge!
- FBA. With FBA, Amazon manages all customer care and fulfillment tasks, and your listings will also receive the Prime Shipping badge.
Place your importing orders
Place the first order
When everything is set up, you may make plans for a down payment and place your first order. Without it, the majority of providers won’t start fulfilling an order. Make shipping arrangements as well. Remember that shipping by air will cost you almost six times as much as shipping by ocean, but it will deliver your goods more quickly.
Certain vendors may provide free on-board freight shipping, in which case the vendor will cover all transportation costs for loading and the buyer will be responsible for all costs associated with discharging. You will be responsible for paying for the insurance, transportation, and costs associated with actually unloading and storing the goods.
When the shipment comes, Customs will need the following paperwork, so make sure the supplier gives them to you: Commercial invoice, Packing list, Detail sheet, Bill of Lading.
Except for certain products, you do not need an import license, but you will need a customs broker for your first shipment. The customs broker will handle all of the paperwork required by US Customs and Border Protection for the shipment’s entry, as well as provide you with information on import duties and arrange for the required Customs Single Entry Bond if you fail to pay customs duties.
Unless you or the supplier have already taken care of it, the customs broker may also file the Import Security filing, which is required 24 hours before your shipment leaves the port of origin. Unless you have arranged for the shipping company to deliver the products directly to you, you may need to hire a freight-forwarding company to deliver the products to you when they arrive.
Steps to start opening an eshop for selling
Choose an eCommerce platform
An online store isn’t just for the technically savvy. Many eCommerce platforms are simple to use and will assist you in building, customizing, and using your store for your specific needs — no coding, technical, or design knowledge is required. There are great shopping cart migration tools available when it is needed, but you had better take time to choose the best solution at the beginning.
Create a layout for your online store
Whether opening an eshop for selling, a restaurant, or a business that offers professional services, it’s critical to build a website that represents your brand and makes sense for your company. Customizations will draw in new buyers, highlight special items, and promote your brand and company history.
Take product photos and create product listings
High-quality photographs are crucial for your website because they are one of the first things people see when they visit your online store.
After that, include your images in your web shop. This stage ought to be simple thanks to your website builder. Be sure to write product descriptions after you’ve generated item listings and attached product photographs.
Connect your online store to social media sites
Integrate your online store with social media networks to increase the reach of your business. Consumers browse and buy through social media channels, so having your items available on these platforms may boost visibility, brand recognition, and sales.
Improve the SEO of your online store
Aside from social platforms, you should ensure that your online business is SEO-optimized so that more buyers can find you online. Syncing your business with platforms like Google Product Listings allows customers to find your store and goods in Google Search, Shopping, and Pictures.
Set up safe payments and personalize the checkout process
Accepting online payments is a crucial feature for every online company, and most eCommerce systems support online payments with built-in, PCI-compliant payment processing. Because many clients prefer to pay digitally, having digital payment methods available helps increase your chances of making an online transaction.
Organize your online inventory
Make sure your inventory management is synchronized across channels once you’ve set up shop online to avoid accidentally selling out-of-stock products.
Arrange for delivery, pickup, and shipment.
Customers will need a way to receive the products they buy, whether it be shipping, pickup, or delivery, if you offer physical goods through your online business.
Create a marketing strategy
With a marketing strategy in place, the work you put into your online business will be much more fruitful. You may communicate and engage with consumers more easily by using tools like email and text message marketing to inform them of your promotions and offers, remind them when they have left goods in their basket, and notify them when an item they are looking for is back in stock.
The most important step in opening an eshop for selling your imports is knowing how to find potential buyers. Everyone has different tastes and desires. If you are selling the same product in other locations you can get a better price.
The best way to do this is to take a good inventory of your product and see what similar products are available. Then see how you can make your product stand out from the rest.
At the end of the day, the goal is to get your customers to buy your product. Once they have bought your product, you need to make sure that they are happy with their purchase and that they will continue to buy from you in the future.