Many independent individuals looking for a way to earn money from home find the answer in e-commerce, an industry that has grown exponentially in just the past few years. Even just a few years ago, only the largest companies with online storefronts could have a profitable internet-based business due to the technical complexities that were involved in developing a website, creating a workable online catalog, controlling the purchasing process, and dealing with product management. But with the recent advent of a wide variety of online store software, or “shopping carts,” today anyone can easily begin selling products or services online.
There are a number of considerations when starting an e-commerce business, such as pricing, website design, the uniqueness of your product, and range of products being offered. However, one of the most important decisions in starting up an online business is the online store software that you select to run it. Shopping cart software, depending upon its quality and customizability, can impact the entire client experience.
The type of online store software seen most often on small business e-commerce sites is the pre-configured “hosted” online shopping cart that is made available by a platform company at a monthly rate. This is often the less expensive option as opposed to custom built online stores. The low cost to the business and ease with which the shopping cart can be installed and maintained are positive aspects of pre-configured shopping carts. The primary negative aspect of such an online store solution is that the business itself has little control over the specifics of the shopping process, so businesses with unique needs often have their online stores “built” by a website design company to their exact specifications.
Whether planning to start up a new e-commerce business or expand sales, anyone expecting to earn income from home with online sales should carefully consider which online store software or service will best meet the needs of the business.