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Friday, April 27, 2012

If you're starting a new business online, or if you want to add an online branch, you need to do some preparation. These ten questions will help you determine if an e-commerce solution is right for you.

1. Is it unique?

Your business needs to have a unique selling point to succeed in the saturated online market. Do you have a unique niche to sell or a unique business model to draw customers? Why buy from you rather than your competitors?

2. Is the market large enough?

To succeed online you're subject to the whims of your customers. You need enough customers online to support your business. Without sustainable demand, your online business will end up costing more money than it brings in.

3. How will you make money?

You need to know how you'll make money. If you're already selling a product, you need an incentive to sell it online. If you're charging a subscription service or something exotic, you need to make sure you're making enough money to cover costs.

4. How are your prices?

Do a little research before you leap into an e-commerce solution. Are there existing competitors that will undercut your prices and make it hard to sell? Can you sustain prices low enough to compete?

5. Will you be copied?

What's to stop a larger corporation from swooping in and copying your business, cutting costs, and driving you out of the market? You need excellent customer service and, if at all possible, patents and legal protections for your intellectual property.

6. Who are your customers?

Marketing online is a science that is constantly changing. You need to know how to navigate these waters and reach your desired customers with your advertising. In order to do that, you need to know who your customers are, what they like, and how to reach them.

7. Will you make money?

Even before you buy web hosting for your business site you need to calculate your profits. Factor in the costs of hosting, web building and advertising. Estimate how much you will need to sell to turn a profit, and see if that's a reasonable estimate. Don't count on being a sudden superstar.

8. Do you have funding?

Once you know how much it will cost, make sure you have the revenue to support it. If you're going into debt to get your site off the ground, you need to be very certain you'll make the profits to pay back that debt.

9. Can you do it?

It takes perseverance, willpower, and fortitude to survive in the online business world. It also takes a robust set of skills and experience. If you don't have those yourself, you'll need to be able to hire someone who does.

10. Can you grow?

It's all very good to establish an online presence for your business, but you can't let it stagnate. You need to be able to grow. Analyze your business and your customers, and estimate if you have room to improve from where you start. Growth turns into profits, which are more important than ever in the online business world.

Bluepark e-commerce software helps you build an online shop providing fast and reliable network. Find your e-commerce solution in one place by visiting www.bluepark.co.uk.

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