First of all kudos to all of you and my special thanks to Mr.Alok for this initiative,although this is my first post I keep a follow up on all the activities and discussions happening on Rodinhood.
After listening and getting shared by so many innumerable journeys of members over here..
I am taking a plunge to start a E-Store of mine.
Let me introduce myself..I am Ashish Baharani an alumnus of 2010 batch of MBA...From the first day itself enrolling into MBA I made up my mind of starting something of my own..So as the blessings of friends and family..I started my own retail store in 2010 of Tees in the most reputed mall..Initially I was retailing only Tantra tees (A bombay brand) as an EBO and lately added more brands of tees in store which got a tremendous response..Right now most of our customers are either NRI's or People based in other cities but belonging to hometown..
Now I am looking forward to start my E store as I am already having the stocks and all the other requirements (VAT,Tin No.etc) which are needed ready..I really want to build a website of repute to cater the younger audience as our major clientele is of that age group..
How can I go about it ?? I have seen many E stores starting and closing up soon as sales dint pick up much...??Where should be my main focus??Initially I want a trial run before spending much on the webstore as to test run the response..??
You guys are really doing a good job...."RESPECT" is the right word..
good to hear that. integrate it on your site. make it interactive, give options( design, colour,etc). basically if i come on the site, i should be able to get a particular sentence, in a font, colour, pic, design and size of my own choice delivered at my doorstep. Wish you all the best and more importantly - send me one as a sample.
Ashish, there are a few people offering hosted ecommerce in India. Don't invest in your own ecommerce platform (say like self hosted magento) till you iron out the kinks and understand it. The question is not if it is viable, but how to make it viable with as little cost as possible.
See this link. Should be helpful: http://ankitkumar.in/how-to-setup-an-ecommerce-store-in-india/
thanks for ankitkumar link. just went to it and read through. amazing chap. i m thoroughly impressed. have tried to contact him now over mail for some business proposition.
do u have his mobile number by any chancea and if its ok to have it over email?
Thanks ashish..I am in talks with Zepo guys
i guess you need the following:
1. lots of patience.. something like no sales for weeks or months
2. lots of money. you would still need to run ur family
3. alternate source of income. refer 2 above
4. Good knowledge of online markets.... whats selling, what prices, hows the competition
5. VVV good knowledge of sourcing. if you cant get cheap, you can sell cheap. and then you wont sell!!!
6. Its a v v hard business i must share and admit. what you would do well is to first check out other sites, not the flipkarts or snapdeals but much smaller ones, which would still be much bigger than yours and see where they are going...
Thanks for the reply..You are bang on target on many aspects which you mentioned..
I know one thing for sure and that is E-Commerce is the future it takes sometime to get the orders pouring but once you figure it out you can just have it all by itself..
Cheap sourcing is what I am looking around as well but the quantities what the manufacturers mention puts me into thinking..
I am already running 2 stores from last 2 years so One thing I know for sure that the rentals kill most of the margins in a typical brick and mortar business..
Many of our customers are based outside Lucknow and abroad as well and they recommend us many times to start a online thing so they can buy from comfort of their home as well..
Hope to solve this trivia soon !!
You can check my comment on an earlier post here. That post also dealt with starting an E-Commerce Portal.
hey ashish, good to know u are adding online presence to ur biz model. I hail from a company - Avenir Labs, which itself is a digital media lab based out of India and UK & help people build their websites & e-commerce businesses and also run our e-comm business - www.vouchersmate.com
so even if u use our services or u decide not to... I would advise u not to go for any B-Grade logistics partner. it's ok to pay 50rs extra but definitely v. imp to deliver orders. ur offline stores & existing customers would definitely help bring more audience to ur e-store.
very importantly pl remember, paisa jala ke jo paise aaye vo ROI nai deta...
In case you wish to use our services, u can contact me at email@example.com or at 7838951900.
all the best, Kamna
In my opinion you should launch an online store only if you wish to evolve as a brand in the future. Choosing any established platform like ebay, tradus etc. may bring you business but customers wont even care as to who delivers the product and you may not be able to engage these new customers.
However, patience (not necessarily money) is what you would need to go through with it. Regarding money, you can easily keep the costs low. Choose any open source platform like Magento CE(free) a good hosting(still very cheap) and a simple one or two word domain. This way you can promote your brand at your own pace.
Regarding development you can proceed in increments. I am a web developer and you can contact me at www.webdesigndeveloplearn.com.
So Ashish, what have you decided finally and how is it going?