CryptoCurrency and E-commerce

CryptoCurrency and E-commerce

Crypto-currency is any form of currency that is virtual or exists digitally. It secures online transactions using cryptography. Unlike traditional banking systems, crypto doesn’t have a central regulating authority such as a bank. Instead, it is a decentralized system that issues new currency units and records transactions.

Why use crypto?

The underlying technology makes transactions secure, scalable, and verifiable, as they are recorded in a digital public ledger, making them more transparent. Unlike traditional transaction channels, cryptocurrencies employ layers of encryption which makes them incorruptible.
This encryption only allows the intended receiver to view and receive digital currency from the sender, making it easy and seamless to make anonymous purchases using encrypted wallet addresses.

It’s safe and Seamless.

Customers buying from eCommerce sites find it convenient and safe to use crypto, as they won’t compromise their personal information. Likewise, the eCommerce company can do business with its customers without worrying about privacy regulations.

Faster Payments.

Unlike traditional banking systems, Crypto-currencies give eCommerce businesses instant access to funds. Crypto transactions help to streamline your business cash flow since they are direct and super-fast.

It has Lower transaction fees.

By using digital currencies, you bypass the central intermediary (banks). And this dramatically reduces your transaction fees. Crypto use also protects the merchants from any fraudulent chargebacks. Since the digital currency is decentralized, transactions are final, making it impossible for third parties to reverse charges.

Broader market.

Most countries in the world are rapidly accepting digital cash. And you can use crypto anywhere in the world without having to adapt to the currencies of that region. As a result, this has broadened the market reach of merchants to other potential customers across the world.
Top Cryptocurrencies you can integrate into eCommerce

• Bitcoin (BTC)

Created in 2009, Bitcoin is the first cryptocurrency. BTC is also the most popular crypto. And just like other cryptocurrencies, it runs on a blockchain, that is, a ledger that logs transactions across a network of multiple computers (decentralized system). Bitcoin is relatively safe and secure from fraudsters.

• Ethereum (ETH)

Ethereum is both a blockchain platform and a cryptocurrency, making it a favorite of developers due to its potential applications. Among these is the “Smart Contracts,” which execute automatically once transaction conditions meet.

• Tether (USDT)

Tether is stable compared to some other digital currencies as it has the backing of fiat currencies like the Euro and USD. And its value remains almost equal to one of these denominations. Investors prefer this coin as it’s relatively less volatile and more stable than some crypto coins.

• Binance Coin (BNB)

While Binance was initially started as a currency to facilitate trades on its exchange platform, you can now use it to trade and process online payments. You can also exchange Binance coins for another crypto such as Bitcoin or Ethereum.

• U.S. Dollar Coin (USDC)

USDC is a stable coin backed by the U.S. Dollar; it runs on Ethereum. And just like Tether, USDC aims to achieve a ratio of 1 USDC to 1 USD. You can use USDC for global transactions.

• XRP

XRP facilitates the exchange of different currencies online. These include fiat currencies like the USD and Euro. XRP also supports cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, among others.
How to accept crypto in your eCommerce store
You can accept digital currencies in your online store through 3rd party payment processors or personal crypto wallets.

• Crypto Wallet

A cryptocurrency wallet is an application that allows users to store and retrieve their digital assets. It’s also proof of ownership of your digital assets, and it helps to keep all your cryptocurrencies securely in one place.
The cryptocurrency exists on a blockchain and not in the wallet. And a customer can interact with the balances in a particular blockchain when purchasing in an online store. Simply put, a crypto wallet provides access to your digital assets that are in a given blockchain, such as Bitcoin.
Apart from letting the owners move coins elsewhere, the wallet software also stores addresses and allows others to see balances at any given address.

There are two types of wallets: Hardware wallets and Software Wallets.

Hardware Wallet

This wallet looks similar to a USB stick, and in it is a set of private keys you will need to access your cryptocurrency on a blockchain. Since these keys are offline, they are inaccessible to digital threats, making this wallet the safest and most secure way to store and access cryptocurrencies.

Software Wallet

This is software installed on your smartphone, personal computer, or the cloud. Similar to the hardware wallet, this software generates access keys to your crypto so you can transfer your digital currency during a transaction. However, it’s more vulnerable to digital threats like hacking or data loss.
Experts recommend users invest in different wallets for extra safety. This is especially handy when dealing with multiple types of crypto, with varying features and value. Examples of wallets include Coinbase Wallet, Trezor Model T, Ledger Nano X, Exodus, and Mycelium.

3rd Party-Payment Processors

Crypto payment getaways or third-party payment processors allow businesses to accept cryptocurrency transactions from online buyers in exchange for goods and services. They feature highly customizable tools and native dashboards that make it easy to track all online payments.
When an online buyer purchases products using crypto, this transaction goes through the payment processor at a fixed exchange rate. Finally, this payment getaway converts this currency into traditionally recognized fiat currency to save the merchant from the volatility of cryptocurrencies.
Some, however, do not automatically transfer it to fiat currency but instead allow the merchant to hold onto the digital currency within their crypto wallet.

Generally, these systems accept transactions from any country. But to qualify for inclusion in this category, a product must meet the conditions below:

– Accept and process the crypto payments
– Connect eCommerce solutions with the transaction systems
– Store the crypto-currencies securely or else convert them into fiat currencies
– Encrypt all transaction information using blockchain technology
Third-party payment processors can integrate with point-of-sale systems, e-commerce platforms, billing & accounting solutions, and shopping cart software. And they tend to offer significantly lower fees than credit card payment systems.
These getaway systems support different Cryptocurrencies, with Bitcoin being the most popular.
Here are some popular cryptocurrency payment apps which you can integrate into an eCommerce store.

• Paytomat Wallet

It’s easy to use and supports most cryptocurrencies, allowing anyone to send and receive digital currency across the globe. Some features include multi-currency support, backup, and recovery, including a 24-word backup phrase, dynamic fees, a 6-digit pin, and instant pay using a QR code.

• Blockonomics

This payment getaway has tools that enhance Bitcoin transactions. With Blockonomics, you can access utility features like creating P2P invoices and tracking wallet addresses.

• BitBucks

This Bitcoin Wallet supports integration into iOS and Android systems. It features simple functionality and easy integration into a store’s POS. It’s a cost-effective way of transacting using Bitcoin.

• Prodoge

Users of Prodoge can connect their digital currency wallets, PayPal, and Stripe and start sending payments, invoices, and POS checkouts. Prodoge is a handy payment getaway to help an online business thrive by enabling merchants to connect with their clients worldwide.

• Coinomi

This multi-asset wallet is safe and secure to use. And it provides native support for a total of 1770 coins, available in 168 fiat currencies.

• BitPay

BitPay features a robust API, 22 eCommerce plugin solutions, seven ready-to-use libraries, and instant integration into some of the best eCommerce services.

• CoinGate

CoinGate supports Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, and 50 other virtual currencies. You can withdraw at a flat rate of a 1% fee without hidden cost and access integration tools like shopping cart plugins, API, payment buttons, and web Point-of-Sale. Users also enjoy a sleek user interface using CoinGate.

Frequently Asked Questions

– Why should eCommerce businesses adopt crypto transactions?
While cryptocurrencies are different from credit card transactions, they share a similarity. They both offer convenience to customers by allowing them to pay electronically for products, which significantly boosts the business’ online sales.
– How are cryptocurrencies likely to affect eCommerce?
Digital currencies give you instant access to funds, helping streamline the business’ cash flow. They are also more secure than credit card transactions, helping reduce eCommerce fraud. And also increase the customers’ trust and make it more convenient to shop.
– What are the benefits of using crypto for merchants and buyers?
By accepting digital currencies, merchants are protected against fraudulent chargebacks, thanks to the decentralized setup of cryptocurrencies. On the other hand, customers enjoy reduced transaction rates compared to credit card charges.
– Can you use crypto on Shopify?
Yes. Shopify accepts most cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum, using third-party payment processors like BitPay, Coinbase Commerce, and CoinPayments.net.

In Conclusion, ecommerce and cryptocurrencies are rapidly transforming the way retailers and consumers transact business.
And while some consumers remain skeptical about crypto as a viable currency, it’s no doubt that digital currencies will impact eCommerce businesses significantly in the future, albeit positively.

As more businesses consider integrating blockchain technology and crypto use into their business models, it will be interesting to watch this space.

How to fund an e-commerce business?

How to fund an e-commerce business?

An e-commerce business is a lot like any other business in that it requires the owner to have an idea, commit time and money, and take risks. All good ideas will require sizeable funding.

E-commerce is no different. It requires a sizeable amount of initial funding to get started. In an e-commerce setup, funding can be used for product inventory costs, transaction costs, and marketing. This guide will give you a step-by-step method to fund your e-commerce business.

How to Fund an E-commerce Business

You can use the following means to kickstart your e-commerce business financially:

1. Get Funding From Friends and Family

Friends and family are usually the first places you will look for funding. They already know you and trust that you can run a successful business.
You will have to convince them that what you are doing will work, especially if you don’t have any previous experience with e-commerce.
You will also need to assure them that you understand the risks involved and how much time and effort you are willing to put in.
For friends and family to provide you with the funds, you may need to give them a substantial return on their investment.

2. Find a Appropriate Lender

A reputable lender will offer you an interest rate that is not too high or too low. There are various types of lenders: banks, credit unions, and pawnshops.
The first question you need to ask yourself is, “How will I repay the loan?” It is a viable option if you can repay the loan with scheduled payments over two years or less. If not, please refrain. It may choke your business in the long run.
The lender will also very likely ask for collateral.
Collateral does not have to be physical. It can be stock certificates or the share of stock.
When you choose a lender, make sure they understand your business model and the risks involved with starting an e-commerce business.
The lender should also have a good idea of the value of what you have to offer as collateral.

3. Get a Small Business Loan

Applying for small business loans can be your best bet for getting funding for marketing, inventory, and other expenses involved in starting an e-commerce business.
Small business loans are available from community banks, credit unions, and even online lenders like Kabbage.
You will have to go through a process to get a small business loan from a bank. Usually, the bank will ask to see the starting capital, collateral, and maybe a guarantor.
As an owner of an e-commerce business, you may want to consider getting a loan from a good ecommerce bank like Chase. Chase is arguably the best bank for ecommerce business.

4. Get an SBA Loan

If you are looking for a long-term funding option, the SBA may be a great avenue to explore.
It offers loans that range from $50,000 to $5 million.
The SBA offers many different loan types, including startup business, business expansion, working capital loans, real estate acquisition or construction loans, and disaster loans. Loans can take anywhere from 10 days to six months to get approval. The SBA insures and guarantees loans to a certain percentage so that if you cannot repay the loan, the bank or lender will not lose as much money as they would have.
The cost of an SBA loan is based on the amount of money being borrowed, your credit score, and your assets.

5. Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is the best way to get your funding. It is the process of raising money from many people or organizations through the electronic use of social media sites, crowdfunding platforms, such as Kickstarter and IndieGoGo, websites, and email. It is different from advertising, but it also attracts attention to a product or service.
In crowdfunding, people use social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter to raise awareness of their business. Crowdfunding on these channels can help reach the right people at the right time to fund your business.
Crowdfunding sites are free to use, and you can scroll through thousands of people who have used their platform for crowdfunding campaigns. You can also see how much they have raised for their businesses.

How Crowdfunding Works

To understand how crowdfunding works, you must understand the agreement terms between the business owner and the crowd funders. Here are the two most common terms used in crowdfunding:

Reward-Based Crowdfunding

Reward-based crowdfunding refers to all donation or equity-based forms of crowdfunding where the return on investment is not made. Instead, campaigners offer a suitable reward to those who pledge money towards their campaign.

Rewards can be anything from an exclusive T-shirt to dinner with the creators or even an original painting. The idea behind reward-based crowdfunding is that the incentive of ownership in a product that hasn’t been released yet, or supporting a cause you believe in, is enough to motivate people to invest their money.

Equity Crowdfunding

Equity crowdfunding is a form of donation-based crowdfunding where investors receive shares in the companies being promoted or financed. Investors have the right to dividends if the company is profitable after the closing of the investment period.

Equity crowdfunding is considered the pure form of crowdfunding and the most effective in raising funding. However, equity-based projects rarely reach seed funding targets because they require commitment from those who invest, which potential investors see as a hurdle.

Crowdfunding is by far the best way to raise funds for small, new businesses.
You’ll need to promote your project using social media most of the time, but then you’ll find other people who have great projects doing the same thing as you.

The Potential Benefits of Using a Crowdfunding Platform

  • It gives you exposure to many different types of people: As it involves reaching out to people, crowdfunding will give you access to people from all walks of life. Some of them may even end up becoming investors in your startup or even customers.
  • Gets your name out there: Crowdfunding can be beneficial to small businesses and startups. It can be challenging for these businesses to raise awareness and gain exposure without any existing connections in the industry. However, crowdfunding can help change the narrative.
  • Rewards may be used as a marketing tool: In reward-based crowdfunding, the money you raise for your project is mainly used as investment capital to pay for the rewards you have offered.
  • Expands your network: The people who invest in your business will not just be customers. They will become a part of your network.
  • Inexpensive: It doesn’t require any advertising and press release distribution costs. Crowdfunding can be very affordable for any small business.
  • No middlemen involved: Crowdfunding platforms are used by startups or established businesses to get in touch with potential investors. There is no broker or middleman involved, so the transaction costs are lower.

The Potential Risks of Using Online Crowdfunding

  • Not reaching your target: A business may fail to reach its target investors with crowdfunding. This is because of inclusivity. Failure to reach a target can be devastating for any fundraiser. After all, if you don’t reach your goal, what’s the point in going ahead with the project?
  • Legalities of crowdfunding: Crowdfundings are emerging as a new way to raise money. Due to this, it involves many legal obstacles. For instance, it is illegal to get money from investors without incentives in most countries. In the USA, crowdfunding only became legal in 2016.
  • Negative reputation: Resorting to crowdfunding as a funding source could send the wrong message. Potential customers may view you as incapable of meeting their demands.

6. Product

The unique thing about e-commerce is that you need to have a product to sell. If you are starting and don’t have enough capital, you may consider starting with a few products to earn money until your business is established.
Start with a business plan or proposal and make sure that your start-up products meet the following criteria:

  • Good quality of material
  • Low production cost
  • Low risk of new technology
  • Unique when compared to competitors’ products
  • Easy to sell
  • Able to sell at a profit

You can sell such a good product online to get funding.

Conclusion

There are many ways to get startup funding for your e-commerce business. They range from donations from friends and relatives to loans from financial institutions. But without a doubt, crowdfunding stands out above the rest. It is the best way to get startup funding for your business. The main reason is that you get all the money from multiple people. All you need is a good idea that supports a cause. You would be amazed by how easy it is to get funding for a business using crowdfunding.

Best products for e-commerce

Best products for e-commerce

E-commerce, also known as electronic commerce, is the purchase of products and services over the internet and transferring finances and data to complete sales. These transactions occur between business-to-business, business-to-consumer, consumer-to-consumer, or consumer-to-business. Most recently, a new model called Direct to consumer (DTC) has been adopted by most businesses.

Background information

It’s not an easy assignment to find the ideal merchandise to sell online. A new consumer data that shows multiple trends in purchase behavior is an essential tool that might expand the customer base for emerging and existing online business ventures. A functional website is essential, even if you’re starting a new business. A landing page, available checkouts, and product catalogs are requisite for a continuous buying experience. To get your sales pipeline in place, it is important to look into what your opposition is doing. If you sell beauty products, make sure your website echoes your client’s interest. Also, a concrete social media strategy engages potential buyers at every step of the purchasing sequence. Clients will visit your online store and make persistent purchases if you have perfectly enhanced your website and items since you have the most trending and magnetic products.

Another vital niche is the nature of the products, space requirements, and shipment cost. Your electronic commerce forecast could suffer significantly if you mainly deal with perishable and fragile goods. If you cannot sell all your goods before the purchasing agitation ends, you are left with a lot of backstock that puts a lot of pressure on your storage facilities. With numerous products to explore, your primary focus in E-commerce products that ensure consistent business are timeless items, require scant storage resources, and are simple to accomplish. The next area to be sensitive to is discovering specific products you might capitalize on. With the Covid-19 epidemic, there have been tremendous changes to the marketplace, thus creating a significant challenge to the existing E-commerce businesses.

Products to sell

Most E-commerce stores fail since they fail to grasp and understand accurate information about the products to sell online. With so many available items in the market, finding one that vends the finest becomes a demanding task. The endless competition and every store are trying to follow similar strategies. Being unique, knowledgeable, alert, setting the pace, and promoting a product effectively will bring you more profit. In such a scenario, some of the best products to sell for E-commerce are:

1. Home décor items

Home decorative materials and equipment are forecasted to go up by 4.8% YOY through 2027. The global home décor market stretched up to a value of US$681 billion in 2021. Consumers prefer an atmosphere that is comfortable and serene; also, with the real estate showing absolutely no signs of slowing down and so attracting a sharp increase in demand for certain items such as carpets, beddings, tapestries, blankets, household storage containers; towels, washcloths and other bath linen.

2. Health and beauty products

According to World Advertising Research Center reports, with health and beauty products not being exclusively purchased by women and men, the online share of sales made in this sector is forecasted to rise 23.3% by 2025. With stress levels increasing, people purchase products like All-natural skincare, Detox tea and juices, Nail extensions, and Wigs to improve their internal well-being and physical appearance.

3. Pet products

Surprisingly, pet ownership is one of the leading causes of electronic commerce spending. By 2025 the global pet care market is projected to surpass $280B. These days, pets are an essential part of their owner’s home. They are no longer viewed as ‘just animals’ but are part of the family, which has led to a sharp increase in purchasing products related to these pets. Products like Slow feeder bowls, pet selfie tools, electronic cat toys, and pet beds are in high demand in America, Europe, and Asia. Purchasing products for their pets is a habit pattern, just as buying food or other items for the household. Most buyers are motivated by several factors: maintaining the health of their pets, enjoying time off with their pets, and ensuring pets are cozy in the home.

4. Sports products

Most people have adopted an increasingly healthy and athletic lifestyle in the recent past. Consumers are looking for pleasant attire to wear around the homestead or physical exercise. Sportswear is also transpiring as one of 2022’s blazing buys. Substitute habits around the world have improved the market investment in fitness-related products. While there is so much activewear for the male gender, female athleisure fashion is increasing worldwide. Suppose you consider platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram that assist buyers in deciding specific styles to stock and the type of trends that help partner with an influencer that helps an individual stand out in the crowd. Products like High-waisted leggings, customized activewear, hoodies, and lofty fashion activewear are in high demand daily.

5. Technology products

There is rarely any aspect within any industry that technology has not influenced. Most notably, data and machine learning are graveling the way for robotics automation and data transfer. When it comes to taking precedence in technology, markets are forced to adopt chatbots, Artificial intelligence (AI), and voice assistance. The reasons vary, but it’s evident that this technology helps provide an efficient customer experience through instant communication, issuing help without the help of personnel. These services also help businesses to have proper data management and improve data security. This is one of the many ways that technology has even helped e-commerce ventures improve their services, which should inspire them to look for unique technology products to sell to the already wide customer base. Products such as car phone holders, wearable devices, wireless charging stations, and USB port extensions are always in high demand. Also, e-commerce ventures could take advantage of email marketing which helps understand specific products for specific clients.

Marketing and pricing strategy

While marketing products, it is essential to note and advertise unique products or Eye-Catching products that are difficult to find. Pricing is also an important aspect of e-commerce. It is mostly regarded as the “sweet spot” for e-commerce buyers. The pricing range is ideal for impulse buyers and abreast sales alike. For instance, your product is cataloged in the range of US$10-40, it is vital to offer flexible deals and flexible prices to discourage would-be contenders. Notably, products priced above fifty dollars are likely to prevent a potential client and look elsewhere for a better offer. Most notably, items in the US$1-10 area are not worth the cost of transportation, making consumers buy these products in-store, but lower-budget products could buttress your appurtenance strategy.

Concluding Remarks

Before selling trending items and products in high demand, it is crucial to identify the products that are performing best and identify specific categories with a lot of profit. Another vital question to ask is how trending items complement site buyer behavior. Despite being tempted by online trends, maintaining a solid supply of things that always sell is essential. Try not to be viewed by clients as “trying too hard” and avoid having many products in your store taking up valuable space. Another critical area is to watch trends on suppliers’ websites and social media platforms and analyze consumer blogs. After finding a trending item that has the potential to elevate your current list, target a segment of clients and learn how trending items can inspire them to make buying choices.

How to start an e-commerce business?

How to start an e-commerce business?

Starting an e-commerce business can be quite lucrative as it involves all the benefits of having a business without the added setup costs of a brick-and-mortar store. Some people love the idea of spending hours behind the counter displaying products to customers, while others want to spend their time elsewhere.

What is an e-commerce business?

E-commerce businesses are online stores that sell products or services to customers. As an e-commerce business owner, you can choose the platform you want to use to run your business. You can also customize your website using themes and plugins, which help you add features like payment processing, inventory management, shipping, and more. Steps to starting an e-commerce business:

Find your e-commerce business niche

The first step to starting an e-commerce business is to find a niche. Whether you want to sell beauty products, handmade items, or clothes, your niche is your area of expertise.

What is a Niche?

A niche is a market segment that you can target with your products and services. Your niche includes the people who are likely to buy from you. But it’s also so much more than that.

Niches are essentially a subset of the entire market. So you’re selling something that appeals to a smaller group of people than the entire market. For example, if you sell kids’ clothing, your niche is children, but your market could be anyone who has kids or buys clothes for kids.

People who are in niches are more passionate about what they do and buy. They’re more likely to spend money on what they want because they feel strongly about it instead of just buying something because they need it. Think about how many people watch sports regularly versus how many people only watch when their favorite team is playing in the Super Bowl or World Series. That’s passion versus interest — which audience would be easier to sell to?

Choose a business name and a business structure

Business name

Your business name must be unique so no one else can use it. Your name should be simple and easy to remember. You can use your own name, or you can choose a name that describes what your business does.

For example, if you want to sell bikes and accessories, you could call your business ‘Zippy Bikes.’ You need to register your business name if you trade with a business name that is different from your own (first and last) names.

Business structure

You need to decide what legal structure best suits the needs of your business. The most common structures are:

Sole traders – this is the easiest structure for a small business with one owner. Owners are personally liable for all debts and other liabilities of the business.

Partnerships – two or more people who carry on a business in common with a view to making a profit. Partners are personally liable for all debts and other liabilities of the partnership.

Companies – are separate legal entities owned by shareholders and managed by directors. The company structure provides limited liability protection for its owners (shareholders). Each state has its own rules governing how companies operate, which must be followed by directors and shareholders (owners).

Get EIN (employer identification number)

An employer identification number (EIN) is a tax identification number that’s required for your business to pay employees and file business tax returns. It’s also known as a federal tax ID number.

The IRS issues EINs and uses them to identify the tax accounts of employers and certain others who have no employees. The IRS uses EINs to identify taxpayers who are required to file various business tax returns, e.g., employment, excise, alcohol, tobacco, and firearms.

EINs are used by employers, sole proprietors, corporations, partnerships, nonprofit associations, trusts, estates of decedents, government agencies, certain individuals, and other business entities.

Business permits and licenses are required to start an e-commerce business. They are usually issued by the government. Business permits and licenses are important because they help the government know what type of businesses are operating in their jurisdiction and also to ensure that certain standards and rules are met.

Get business permits and licenses

A business license is a permit that allows a company or individual to conduct business within a certain jurisdiction. The license is most often issued by the local government but can also be issued state or federal level. Most licenses require renewal on an annual basis, though some licenses can be valid for up to five years.

In order to obtain a business license, an application must be submitted to the local governing authority, such as a city hall or county courthouse. Some of the information that may need to be included on the application include:

  • The name or names of the individuals who own the business
  • The address of the business
  • The type of business (for example, an e-commerce business)
  • Whether or not you plan on hiring employees

You can create a website or use an e-commerce platform

You can create an online store in two ways: build your own website or use the services of a third-party e-commerce platform. If you want to do it yourself, you should find out how to make a website and get yourself familiar with web design and coding languages. You can also hire a web developer or designer to build your website for you.

Create your website

A website is a great way to showcase your products, connect with your customers and learn about their needs. It can also help you reach more people, grow your business and work more efficiently.

Your website should include:
Useful information about the products or services you sell– make sure it’s easy for customers to find what they’re looking for, including prices, photos, and descriptions.

Contact information– so customers can easily get in touch with you by phone, email, or social media. You may want to include a contact form.

Details about any special offers, discounts, or promotions you’re running – Information about how a customer can pay (for example, credit card, direct debit, or cash). Privacy policies and other important legal information (for example, terms and conditions).

When you create a website, there are four steps you should follow:

  • Choose a domain name
  • Register this domain name
  • Choose your web hosting package
  • Install the WordPress on your website

If you follow these steps, it will be easy for you to create a website for your business.

If you decide to use an e-commerce platform, there are several different services you can use. Some of them are more flexible than others, and some have different features that may be useful for your business. Here are some of the best e-commerce platforms:

Shopify – Recommended for beginners
WooCommerce – Recommended if you’re using WordPress
Volusion – Great features, but not the most beginner-friendly platform
Ecwid – Recommended for beginners and small businesses
Squarespace – Not an e-commerce focused platform, but it has powerful features for selling online
Magento – Highly customizable but not recommended for beginners

Source or develop your products

When you’re developing your own products, you’ll need to do a lot of research and product development, and you may want to hire employees to help with this. If you’re selling someone else’s stuff, you’ll still need to design a website, set up marketing tools, and deal with customers. But you won’t have to worry about inventories or shipping products.

Where can you source your product?

Sourcing products can be difficult when you’re first starting out, but there are options from all over the world available to entrepreneurs. Here are a few:

Overseas manufacturers: You can find thousands of manufacturers that specialize in all kinds of products online. Trade sites like Alibaba and Global Sources are good places for finding suppliers. The downside is that it’s hard to know if the manufacturer is legitimate or if the quality is any good before you buy samples or place an order.

Domestic wholesalers: If the thought of dealing with an overseas company makes you nervous, there are plenty of domestic suppliers that sell products wholesale that they manufacture themselves or import from abroad and then sell on at wholesale prices. Look for ones that specialize in wholesale drop shipping — where they provide all the inventory and shipping services for their customers — so that you don’t have to.

Market your business

Marketing your e-commerce business doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. Effective marketing strategies for e-commerce businesses don’t require a big budget or even a lot of time — and that’s great news for bootstrapping entrepreneurs who are short on both.

To get started, try these free and low-cost marketing ideas:

Start a blog (or revamp your existing one)

Blogging regularly can help you improve your SEO, build trust with customers and get new visitors to your site. And it’s pretty easy to get started. If you already have a blog, take some time to rework the categories so people can find your posts more easily.

Build an email list

Email is still one of the most effective marketing tools out there, and it’s easy to start building a list if you haven’t already. Use an app like Hello Bar or OptinMonster to collect emails from visitors directly on your site so you can follow up with them later. Existing customers also make excellent targets for email marketing campaigns. You can offer them special discounts or other rewards in exchange for their contact information — just make sure you’re complying with all anti-spam regulations in the process.

Use social media to promote your e-commerce business

Posting on social media can help you connect with customers and learn more about who they are and what they want from your business. You can also use social media to create a conversation around your brand and show off new products or promotions.

Build relationships with influencers in your industry

Influencers with a large following can play a big role in promoting your products or services. They may have their own blog where they talk about their favorite products or their own YouTube channel where they do product reviews (called “unboxing videos”). Look for the influencers in your industry who seem to be most popular with your target customers — those are the ones you could partner with most effectively.

Starting an e-commerce store can be a very lucrative business opportunity. It’s time to think outside the box, but if you are thinking about starting your own online store, then follow the above steps to start an e-commerce business.

Where does e-commerce come from?

Where does e-commerce come from?

The emergence of e-commerce from a small beginning to its present-day dominance has radically changed business. It has also made fundamental changes in the ways consumers interact with companies. The pandemic has accelerated the business of e-commerce, but it was on a fast track before that defining event. 

DEFINITION

The letter “e” in e-commerce refers to electronic. That means that the business, or commerce, is conducted electronically. It can be performed by a computer, laptop, or smartphone over the internet. That is the fundamental concept. Anyone with one of the electronic devices mentioned can be involved in e-commerce from anywhere in the world as long as they have internet access.

The definition covers virtually any product or service imaginable. Consumers can purchase products from any store that maintains a brick-and-mortar location. They can also shop from a virtual store that exists only on the internet.

The concept of e-commerce involves businesses interacting with other companies as well as consumers buying from other consumers on sites where anyone can sell a product or just an item in their home,

As is evident from the above discussion above, e-commerce is everywhere. The question is how it developed to become such a large part of everyone’s life.

ORIGINS

E-commerce was made possible by the convergence of personal electronic devices, the internet, and the common usage of credit and debit cards instead of checks and cash. The simple answer to where did e-commerce come from is the existence of all three factors at around the same time.

It all began with a straightforward transaction in 1994. All new inventions or innovations start slowly and then gather strength. E-commerce was no exception. In the beginning, few people had access to the internet. They did not see a reason to spend the time and money. There were not many sites to access, and shopping did not seem like a good idea. People were reluctant to buy items remotely without seeing the products in person. 

Soon businesses realized the benefits of having a website. They also saw the potential to sell products to individuals who did not live near their stores. It was all about supply and demand. The more demand for virtual services, the more supply caught up.

E-commerce was suddenly everywhere. Every consumer purchased an electronic device which led to the prices dropping so today, most people have at least a smartphone. They see the ease of using a card instead of cash or checks. 

The pandemic has made e-commerce permanent. A person can sit at home, shop for anything and everything online through the internet, pay with a card, and then the product arrives on the doorstep. No one has to leave their home.

In summary, e-commerce comes from a total shift in how business is done. The change is irreversible. It will only expand in time. It came literally out of nowhere and has changed the world forever.

INTERNET

There could be no e-commerce without the internet. It is the modern-day equivalent of a never-ending shopping mall. A person accesses the internet and then indulges their every desire. The websites and stores are endless. E-commerce is the natural end product of this invention. 

A simple example demonstrates how the internet produced e-commerce. An individual in Wisconsin loves to bake. People rave about the cookies and cakes. They are a hit at local fairs and events. The person decides to venture out further from home. Why wouldn’t customers in New York or Montana buy the cookies and cakes if locals like my products?

Before the internet, reaching a broad audience would have been cost-prohibitive. That has all changed. The internet has transformed commerce by creating e-commerce. The baker in Wisconsin makes a website. They list their products and show examples. They post costs and explain how the items can be shipped.

The buyer in New York, Montana, or anywhere else can now engage in e-commerce. They place the order online, pay by card, and wait for the shipment to arrive.

An innovative seller can offer discounts, free shipping, or even samples to be sent to generate sales. They can offer moneyback guarantees for their cookies. There is no end to the ways a seller can utilize e-commerce to grow a business. They can also solicit comments and testimonials from satisfied buyers.

This is just one small example of the origins of e-commerce. Of course, large companies have joined to market their diverse offerings. They have noticed that consumers are more and more willing to buy without ever entering a store. 

In many ways, e-commerce has helped level the playing field for startups with established and large corporations. It is all part of a new world of doing business.

ELECTRONIC DEVICES

The e-commerce described above could not function without buyers possessing affordable electronic devices. At one time, computers were large pieces of equipment that were expensive. They usually were put on a desk and could not be moved easily due to their weight and the need for electrical outlets.

That all changed with laptops and then smartphones. Suddenly, consumers desiring to participate in e-commerce could get on the internet virtually anywhere and were not tied to wires. Sit in a park and use a smartphone to order those cookies from Wisconsin. It became all too easy.

Pick up a smartphone and “surf” the internet. That is how e-commerce came to be what it is today. The faster the electronic devices and the more extensive storage, the easier it is to enjoy e-commerce. No one can participate in e-commerce without the right electronic device.

One other factor powering e-commerce is that as electronic devices become more powerful and easier to use, they generally have dropped in price. This is due to advances in manufacturing and increased demand and competition among producers. It all makes for the perfect storm to produce e-commerce.

CARDS

The final puzzle piece explains where e-commerce came from cards, whether debit or credit. If a consumer made their purchase over the internet from an electronic device but then had to mail a check or money order, it would greatly hinder the whole point of e-commerce.

Websites had to be set up to take card purchases. They also had to provide secure payment methods. Consumers were naturally cautious about giving their card numbers. The security feature is tied together with the internet, electronic devices, and cards. Once that was accomplished, then e-commerce could flourish. 

Consumers who wanted to join e-commerce needed to get a card. A debit card is an easy way to subtract the payment from the customer’s bank account. It avoids the issue of credit and fees. It is an electronic check. One more way that e-commerce came into being.

The seller was now assured that payment had been made so shipment could occur without worrying about not being paid. When the whole concept of e-commerce is examined, it is clear that cards are just as important as the internet and electronic devices.

The article has shown that e-commerce came from a convergence of the internet, electronic devices, and cards for payment online. All three are the answer to the question. E-commerce could not have happened and continue to occur without all three.

It is pretty simple. No internet and e-commerce has come to a halt. Failure of a person’s smartphone or laptop has the same effect. Finally, without the finances to back up a debit or credit card, e-commerce comes to a stop. This is where e-commerce comes from and stays a vital part of the economy.

History of Online Banking

History of Online Banking

Technology has made it easy for many industries to operate a business online. With banking, even the slightest thing like money withdrawal or checking account balance required one to visit the physical location. Today, most digital banking tools are offered online; therefore, it’s easy to access using your personal phone or computer.

What is online banking?

Like the term itself, this is a process of accessing financial transactions using the internet. It is conducted by using electronics like phones and computers to withdraw money, deposit, pay bills, etc. It is also called web or internet banking. Consumers can do this at their own convenience, so there is no need to visit any bank branch.

The history of internet banking

It started back in 1980 when technology started to rise and later became famous around 1990. in the past, most people used to make trips to the physical bank location for their financial needs. It has become easily accessible to many since almost everyone owns a computer or phone that they can use for transactions. Its evolution has grown, making online banking the most reliable method of depositing and withdrawing money. Below is the development of internet banking throughout time.

Test at home banking in New York City

It began in 1981 in New York City, which is considered the first place to experience internet banking. The services were provided remotely by visiting homes. Chemical Bank and Citibank Chase are the banks that ensured their customers benefited from the new banking version. They are also considered the first banks to understand and provide internet banking to people.

Banking services in Scotland

During this period, the UK invented a method by which clients can access online banking easily. The process was to use phones and TVs through internet connection then send money or pay bills through the devices. Since it was an analog method, it took time to do transactions compared to modern days.

Presidential bank leads

In 1994 the US was able to provide online banking to its people through the help of Stanford Federal Credit Union. It was the first bank to come up with online accounts that every person could own financially. Since then, internet banking has become so popular that most banks worldwide have started implementing the same.

The founding of the Bank of Internet in the USA

In 1999 the Bank of Internet USA was founded and officially started doing business in 2000. It was the biggest bank at the time with a massive number of clients. However, higher rates were applied when banking online. It also had other benefits like sending and withdrawing money from any location without visiting the bank’s physical site. The bank also provided an easy way for people to invest and quickly request loans.

The growth of Bank of America

During the year 2000, most people started to understand more about online banking. During this time, the Bank of America gained many customers over millions, which made it recognized as the best. Many people started investing and applying for online banking after realizing its advantages. The bank’s popularity spread the word through regions about the easiest ways to manage their finance online.

Evolution of Internet banking

In 2006, online banking had become so common that many banks invested in it. Many banks began to offer online services to their clients, which increased the number of customers at a tremendous rate. It was now obvious how popular internet banking was, and many people relied on such services to pay their bills and save their investments.

The breakthrough of online banking

In 2010, online banking was growing faster than the internet itself. This is due to the collaboration of many banks and the provision of online services to customers. Due to the rapid increase of technology use, many people owned devices like cell phones that allowed connection to online bank accounts. This made it easy for everyone to access, making it even more popular. Every person that had a phone and access to the internet owned an online banking account that played the same purpose as the physical one.

Online banking in 2018

at this time, the idea of banking online was worldwide, and almost every person was using the services. Through accessing apps and other online platforms, people can now pay their bills send money and other financial things at a cheaper rate. It became easy for entrepreneurs to do business worldwide using online platforms that allowed them to send money fast and efficiently. Online banking continues to upgrade each day by providing easy financial solutions to people.

How to secure online banking

There are many ways people can secure their online banking accounts. And since it has become so popular, people are looking for ways to hack or steal money from these accounts. As a person with an online account, you should put a strong password that is hard to crack. Also, you can enable two-factor authentication from the bank you are using. Another thing is to avoid disclosing your information like pins to other people to secure the account. When using the public internet, always log out when done to avoid leaving your information to other users. The bank itself provides encryption technology that secures the user’s account. Such features warn the user about any malicious activities happening to the account without their consent. Such ensures that they confirm with you first to block any fraud activities. 

How to avoid attacks

There are various ways online banking users can prevent attacks from frauds. One of the ways is to ensure that the operating system well attaches the account. Another method is using a security process that consists of the user double-checking the data against any attacks from outside. This will prevent any outside activities from entering the account, making it secure and safe.  

Online banking features

These are features included in internet banking to make it easy for people to operate and use. Apart from depositing and withdrawing money, these features make the online banking process easy to follow and keep track of money. It also prevents one from making unaccountable transactions from the bank. They include balance and transaction viewing, ordering checkbooks, downloading applications, account statements, and others. 

Customers can also benefit from services like money transfer, paying bills, investing, applying for credit cards, and loan applications. Financial institutes offer other services like financial management support that allows clients to access their account information from any location without logging in. It also applies when dealing with other institutes, enabling easy monitoring of all the online accounts.

Even with the slow evolution of internet banking, it has proven that more upgrades are coming in the future. Online banking services have played a significant role in improving technology and making the financial industry more accessible to people. Its only by its upgrade that there is no more usage of landlines, making trips to banks, and other analog ways of accessing money. Today, you can deposit and withdraw money from any location by clicking on your mobile phone. It’s also easy to invest and do business with online banking. In the future, internet banking will likely be more advanced and easier to use, just like it has been upgrading over time.