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How To Create an Ecommerce Online Store with Ecwid

Ecwid gives you the power to make profits online. Whether you have a business or a side project you want to expand, building an online presence does nothing but help your work. Unfortunately, creating a website for your products can definitely be daunting. Let us help you sell your products and services online.

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Get to market quickly
Start selling online the same day. Ecwid lets you create an online store in minutes.
Reach more customers
While selling locally is great, you will be able to reach more people from all over the world when you sell online.
Focus on growth
Figuring out how to work a website is difficult enough, especially when you’re running a business. Using Ecwid, you can focus on growing your business rather than learning computer science.

Why Create an Online Store?

E-commerce is on the rise

More customers are moving their purchases online every year. In 2020, over two billion consumers bought products or services online globally. Global retail Ecommerce sales increased by more than 25% during the pandemic!

Online shopping is one of the most profitable virtual activities worldwide

Even before the pandemic, people were moving their shopping online. Then in 2020, worldwide retail Ecommerce sales reached $4.28 trillion as people were stuck at home due to the pandemic. Even as the pandemic loosens its hold, online sales are anticipated to reach $5.4 trillion by 2022!

Everyone is shopping online

People love convenience, and there’s nothing more convenient than buying products from the comfort of your home. In fact, the number of online customers is expected to increase to 4.9 million by 2025.

How To Create An Online Store And Launch A Profitable Online Business

Whether you already own a business and want to expand it online, or if you’re just getting started with your side-project-turned-venture, this tutorial will guide you through the process of setting up an online shop from beginning to end.

To create your online store and launch an online business follow these 9 simple steps:

  1. Conduct market research
  2. Choose the right platform for your store
  3. Create a basic online store
  4. Choose an eye-catching domain
  5. Add products to your inventory
  6. Customize your online store
  7. Set up shipping and taxes
  8. Set up payment options
  9. Launch your online store

Looks simple enough! Let’s explore what each step entails.

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Step 1_ Conducting market research

Step 1: Conducting market research

First, you will want to figure out the viability of your products. This is where market research comes in. When you begin to research, you are trying to gather information to assess the feasibility of your product, whether it’s a new musical instrument or a canned cure for sleepiness. Market research allows businesses to identify their target market and obtain feedback on their product or service from consumers.

Market research will help you unlock a niche where you will:

  • Stand out among competitors
  • Find loyal customers
  • Spend less on advertising
  • Grow faster

The main steps of any market research are:

  • Conduct a SWOT analysis. This means finding the positives (Strengths, Opportunities) and negatives (Weaknesses, Threats) surrounding your company. Learn more about SWOT here.
  • Find a gap in the market. In order to have a successful online presence, you need to uncover unfulfilled customer needs that you and your business can provide. This doesn’t mean being a monopoly — more, you want to be able to fill a niche. Learn more about searching for a niche.
  • Figure out your potential customers. Customer profiles help identify who your target customers are, what they care about, why they buy products, and where to find them. Learn more about buyer personas.

Step 2_ Choosing a platform

Step 2: Choosing a platform

Unfortunately, there isn’t one answer to choosing your platform. You might start selling through social media, or take the steps to create your own website. The best platform for Ecommerce depends on your product, how you want to sell your product, and how much work you want to do on said website.

Here are 9 things to consider when choosing an Ecommerce platform for your online store:

  1. Pricing. How much will the net cost be when using this platform?
  2. Integrability. Does this platform get along with other tools you’re going to use?
  3. Templates. Are templates available to make your products easier to buy?
  4. Analytics. Is there an analytics feature that provides information about your customers and sales?
  5. Google Search friendliness. Does this platform have built-in SEO tools to get your business in the search spotlight?
  6. Mobile-friendliness. What mobile features do you need based on your products or services?
  7. Customer support. Is there a store platform with 24/7 support in case of emergencies?
  8. Transaction safety. Does the platform provide a safe Ecommerce platform for your consumers?
  9. Growth opportunities. Does it have built-in tools and scale well? Or are there weird limits to what you can do? Will the platform help you grow or pull you back?

Learn more about choosing the right platform for your online store here.

Step 3_ Creating a storefront

Step 3: Creating a storefront

When you begin the process of creating an online store, you have two basic options: 1, building a store from scratch as a separate asset; or 2, embedding a store to your existing website.

Most Ecommerce platforms enable you to create online stores as separate websites. You can create pages on that platform, and edit all of the features in place. These platforms have global settings that influence the entire website look and feel.

But sometimes, you don’t need a separate website because you already have one that gets a lot of traffic. To monetize this traffic without creating another website on a separate domain (or subdomain), some platforms offer an embedment feature. Embedding will allow you to add a shopping cart to any website using almost any website builder. Thus, you’ll save days and weeks on generating traffic and start selling to the people that already visit your website.

Step 4_ Choosing a domain name

Step 4: Choosing a domain name

Your online store’s digital property is everything. Your store name is how customers will find products on the internet — search engines like Google and other sites like Facebook will list your products based on how people are looking for them.

Names like “Amazon” and “Etsy” will be at the top of these listings, so if you’re looking to sell online, make sure your domain name is short, unique, and recognizable. Choose a name that you know your market audience will enjoy and remember.

Step 5_ Adding products to your online store

Step 5: Adding products to your online store

When creating a website for your store, you need to create engaging product pages. You will have to set up your product category pages, write excellent descriptions, and post pictures that will sell to make shopping at your store enjoyable and easy.

Product page
Make sure your product pages are clearly labeled, with consistent keywords that help people find your products while searching online. You want to make sure your product page pulls consumers in, using organization, clear descriptions, and attractive photos. Learn more about how to create good product pages.

Product descriptions
You should make sure to provide detailed descriptions for customers as they consider buying one of your products. Never feel like you’ll bore your consumers with too much information, even if the pictures show the answer. You want to give details in multiple places so that if customers miss information in one place, they can find it in another. Learn more about product descriptions.

Product images
As a merchant, your products (and selling your products) are the key to your success. How you visually showcase them online can make all the difference in turning visitors into customers. Well-thought-out photography should be your first step. This is even easier nowadays, with cell phones that take better pictures than most cameras. Making sure to take high-quality photos that showcase your products is easy. Learn more about product photography.

Step 6_ Customize the look of your online store

Step 6: Customize the look of your online store

Ecommerce website platforms come with a broad selection of themes, organized by market (or product) verticals. Verticals are content that appeals directly to your business niche. Choose a template that best matches your needs and then adjust it to fit your business’ branding.

Here is a list of some aspects you can customize in your online store:

  • Navigation around your site
  • Use pleasing fonts and text sizes
  • Add high-quality visuals and branded assets
  • Configure your color scheme 
  • Embed social media accounts and branded content
  • Experiment with different page layouts and product listing types
  • Highlighting products on different static content pages
  • Distribute banners across online store
  • Add Legal pages
  • Add About us page

Step 7_ Setting up shipping and taxes

Step 7: Setting up shipping and taxes

In order to get your product to your customers, you have to deal with shipping and taxes. Make sure you’re choosing shipping options that are best for both you and your customers. First, you’ll select your preferred shipping, then choose how you’ll handle shipping costs — free, flat-rate, live carrier rates, or a mix. Don’t forget to make your shipping policy as clear as possible to set the best expectations among customers. You need to include terms, costs, and limitations.

As for taxes, that will depend on the region where your business is located. But finding out how to pay taxes on your products is one of the most important things you need to do when doing business, especially online. While accounting is probably the last thing on your mind on a day-to-day basis, you want to keep on it. Don’t ignore it until it’s the end of the quarter, and then madly find all the tax sheets under your bed before any filing deadlines.

Learn more about filing your taxes here.

Step 8_ Setting up payment methods

Step 8: Setting up payment methods

When you start an Ecommerce business, you want to give your online shoppers payment options that are both safe and convenient.

Therefore, you should think carefully about how to accept payments online. You need to both meet customer needs and manage the cash flow of your business effectively. Payment methods will also determine the facilities your business will need.

Typical payment methods used in a modern business context include cash, checks, credit or debit cards, money orders, bank transfers, and online payment gateways such as PayPal. Learn more about payment methods for your online store here.

Step 9_ Launching your online store

Step 9: Launching your online store

When you complete setting up your online store, go through the checklist below to make sure you have everything in order. Once you do, your store is ready for the launch!

  • Test your checkout and payment system
  • Check product pages for images and descriptions
  • Inspect your main navigation
  • Test your support emailing
  • Check transactional and marketing emails automation
  • Check your inventory for stock availability
  • Test coupons
  • Look through all pages for the design and layout issues

Here are more things to check before launching an online store.

How to Set Up an Online Store With Ecwid in Minutes

While you can set up your online store on a multitude of platforms, you can also do it right here on Ecwid! Ecwid’s online store can be installed on any new or existing website and is designed to integrate seamlessly into your web design. Within a few minutes, you can have a free shopping cart added to all major Content Management Systems (CMS), such as WordPress, Joomla, or Drupal, as well as any custom-built website. You can even add a store to your business’s Facebook page!

There are multiple ways to add your Ecwid store on your website, either through a plugin, extension, widget or by using our short integration code.

Why Ecwid?

Creating an online store with Ecwid (step-by-step)

  1. Create a free Ecwid account. You can log in with your email, Google, or Facebook profile.
  2. Create a separate online store (Instant site) or embed Ecwid to any existing website
  3. Connect your domain. You’ll get one for free, but you can connect a custom one at any time.
  4. Upload your products. With Ecwid, you can sell physical goods, digital files, services, or resell products of other suppliers.
  5. Make a unique design. Create your ideal website by changing size images, product card layout, website organization, and more!
  6. Set up shipping. You can combine several shipping strategies in your Ecwid store to cover all of your products and delivery locations.
  7. Set up taxes. As an online merchant, you may need to collect taxes and periodically forward them to appropriate tax authorities.
  8. Set up payments. When customers add your products to their carts and head to checkout, they can choose how they want to pay for their order.
  9. Connect sales channels. Sell on your website, on social media, on Google, or live in person.
  10. It’s time to launch! All set? Let’s push that “Publish” button and start selling online.

Why Create an Online Store with Ecwid

With Ecwid, you don’t need any experience with coding or web design. We make it simple for you to create the business website of your dreams.

Plus, we help you deal with the hard and boring aspects of the business. Our easy-to-use shipping, payment, and tax options make selling online a piece of cake. We are excited to help you and your business grow!

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Create an online store

Ecwid Makes Online Selling a Breeze

Ready to sell online? Get started by registering for your free Ecwid account. You’ll be able to create, customize, and add products in minutes. So what are you waiting for?

Your Ecommerce journey awaits.

Sell Anything

Do you want to start an online business? We’ve gathered all of the best product ideas in one place.

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How to Sell Online

So you want to start selling your products online. But… where do you start?

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Create A Storefront Or Add Ecommerce To Your Website

Create a new website from scratch in just 5 minutes with simple, customizable design tools, or quickly add an online store to your existing website with technology that instantly mimics your current design. No coding or software installation is required.

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From Social Sharing to Social Selling

Reach billions of social media users from one control panel. Ecwid will help you distribute your products across major social networks:

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Marketplaces — Connected

Get your products sold across all major marketplaces:

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Sell on Google

Conquer the Internet when you sell your products through Google Shopping.

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Add a Shopping Cart To Your Website

Add an Ecwid shopping cart to your existing website to start selling online and monetize your traffic:

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Accept Payments In-person

Connect a Point-of-Sale system to an Ecwid store to accept payments from anywhere.

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Build Your Ecommerce Empire On the Go

Create a full website, add products, manage orders and inventory, and more — right from your smartphone!

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Create an online store

Your Online Store is One Click Away

Create a FREE online store with Ecwid and start selling online today.

Users Say about Ecwid by Lightspeed

Betsy Enzensberger
Betsy Enzensberger
Several years ago I was in need of a shop site to make selling my artwork easier. Ecwid has provided me with a very comprehensive program. I was able to connect my Ecwid shop to my website, Facebook, and Instagram. I connected my USPS account for seemless shipping. I also began using the Google shopping tools as well as the Kliken advertising option. For someone who is a creator not a tech expert, I found Ecwid to give me an easy-to-use, visually appealing, customizable shop.
Emma Orton
Everything is taken care of, from inventory to orders, so I can concentrate on running my business. Plus the assistance I have received by everyone is just amazing! Thank you!
Kat Johnson
Kat Johnson
Ecwid has been a great solution for our e-commerce needs. We often have restaurant guests who miss out on buying our merchandise in-person, so our online store gives them a second chance! The best part is that Ecwid integrates seamlessly with our restaurants’ websites, making e-commerce a natural extension of our brands.
Erich Durr
Extremely dynamic! With minimal effort building my web, I can focus on sales and marketing and still have a world class e-commerce website. And a special thanks for your free plan. It has allowed me to learn, grow and experiment. Ecwid by Lightspeed, you are truly the best.
Malcolm Dewey
Creating paintings is something I enjoy doing, but selling them is where I need help. I use Ecwid because their ecommerce solution makes selling online much simpler. From creating a shop, adding products to secure payment options Ecwid covers every aspect.
Melissa LeGresley
Melissa LeGresley
I’m so glad I chose Ecwid! My customers love that they can choose e-transfer as a payment option, and I love that I can give instructions for local pick up and so many other customized options to really make the website your own!successfully and in record time, integrate without difficulty or additional payments what our store needed.
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