Launch an Online Store: You have observed (or likely heard about) the industrialists on Shark Tank. About half of them walk right in front of the sharks discussing about the hundreds of thousands, or maybe millions of dollars they have invested within their startup, just to be in a condition where they require more funds from the billionaire investors to keep their business hopes going and alive.
It might offer you a tumbling sensation in your belly, knowing that you might never be able to put together such amount of cash or have the collateral to backup such kind of loan from an investor or financial institution.
Matter of fact; do you even require all of that in order to kick-start any business?
I simply mean, can it possibly be conceivable to launch a thriving online business – for instance, an ecommerce store, without any much cash or say very little of starting capital?
Though your expenditures are likely to grow as your sales improve, I want to jog your memory that several of these entrepreneurs started off with close to nothing more than a basic ecommerce website, expending small amounts of cash to progressively expand & make cash to pay for future upgrades.
Well for the moment, you require the cheapest likely method to launch an ecommerce site. It is either you have little cash within your pocket, or some zero amount to start selling/marketing, thus we want to reveal to you a few ways that will keep money within your pocket for investing in other areas of your online business. So keep reading on to start saving your way to the big picture!
Method one – WordPress
WordPress has for a long time been the go-to solution for 30 percent of all website proprietors on the internet. Or, to mention this in another direction, more than one in 4 websites function within the WordPress platform.
And fortunately for majority of us, WordPress is also impeccably capable of running an ecommerce site. More than this, essentially over 45 percent of all ecommerce websites (most current data indicates) operates within WordPress.
The advantages of going that way & launching your shop on WordPress are really appealing:
- WordPress in its totality is a free & open source platform. Meaning that you can not only get it at free cost, but also even tweak its inward workings to suit your requirements – 100 percent.
- The ultimate ecommerce tool for WordPress, an eCommerce plugin known as WooCommerce also comes free and is an open source.
- Users can get an outstanding & reliable hosting plan that’s been fully WordPress optimized for as low as $4 per month. (Much later on, as your site improves and expands, you might decide to switch to a much higher-tier plan at $12 per month).
Running through with that last thing for a second – the hosting – yes, utilizing WordPress as the center of your online store necessitates you getting a hosting account on your own cost. This might seem complex, but it’s essentially a fairly straightforward thing to attain. All you require to do is sign up with one of the common hosting providers & provide them some basic contact and business info about your website.
With regards to particular hosting providers that we can recommend, I would say SiteGround is one of the top-rated & most optimized solutions for WordPress on the marketplace. Their top quality service has been confirmed by several customer reviews & hosting survey results.
And the great part of it, as I mentioned above, is that you can get a WordPress ready hosting account for as low as $4 per month. Just click here to start.
At the point of sign-up, you can mention to SiteGround to generate a blank WordPress site for you. SiteGround will handle this for free, thus you won’t have to get your hands working with the technical setup. The company will also offer you a free domain name (hence you don’t require going to seek for it with any 3rd-party registrar – which makes the setup much even quicker).
Some other feature of your ecommerce setup is WooCommerce – which is the free WordPress plugin that will offer you all the ecommerce store functionality that you require. It can be installed just as like any other WordPress plugin & there are no costs connected with procuring it.
The last feature of our WordPress plus ecommerce brainteaser is your WordPress theme, which is the website design that you will show to your clients/customers.
There’s a ton of choices available on the web, there really is – though if you do not desire getting flooded with all the prospects, you can check out this short-list right here. The entire themes exhibited on that page have been pre-selected due to their optimization & structure for ecommerce sites & WooCommerce in specific.
Let me simply highlight that it’s really critical to operate with a WordPress theme that has been optimized for ecommerce sites. Or else, you are risking your products/items not displaying correctly & hence costing you sales.
So now, all that I’m saying here might seem like some loads of work initially, though it really isn’t like that. Once you begin going thru the phases, you will quickly notice that all of them can be done in less than 60 minutes, and that everything is quite simple to grasp as you move on.
That’s the entire capability of WordPress, as you can launch essentially any kind of site with it (including ecommerce or some other online business venture), and do so at a really minimal cost & with small time investment.
To sum it all up, setting up an online store on WordPress will cost you the following:
- $4 per month for web hosting
- $0 fee for WordPress
- $0 fee for a WordPress theme/template
- $0 fee for WooCommerce, the main ecommerce plugin
Method two – BigCartel (For Shops that have no Many Products)
If you consider selling up to 5 products/items, the BigCartel system provides a plan that’s totally free, ever. The only issue with this is that you are limited to 5 products & the features are rather to some degree. To mention further, if you begin upgrading to other plans, you would be better off taking up a solution such as Shopify, as the feature base is much better.
On the other hand, the BigCartel Gold plan looks just like this below:
- Discount codes
- Free for up to products/items
- Digital products
- Order management
- 5 images per product/item
- Inventory tracking
- Selling on Facebook
In case you would like to upgrade your account within BigCartel, below are the plans to select from:
- Titanium at $29.99 for only 300 products
- Diamond at $19.99 for only 100 products
- Platinum at $9.99 for only 25 products
Method 3 – Shopify (Fastest Way with Simple & Robust Tools)
The last technique for creating a cheap store is to ride with Shopify. This is by far the simplest & fastest way out of the 3 options, and I highly recommend it for newbie developers.
You begin with a 14-day free trial for testing stuffs out & the Lite Plan is just $9 every month. This is an awesome price considering you also get a domain name & hosting, and you can select a free theme/template.
This plan does not have an online shop, though you get limitless products/items & a Shopify Buy button to begin selling.
Even when you begin upgrading, the costs are quite reasonable:
- Basic Shopify Plan at $29
- Shopify Plan at $79
- Advanced Shopify Plan at $299
Now up to you…
Now that you have had an opportunity to check out the most affordable methods to launch an ecommerce store, please let us know in the comments section below if you have had a chance to work with any of such providers/platforms. Were you able to keep expenditures minimal all through the process?
Feature image curtsey of Isaac