BlogEcommerce Basics
how-to-create-an-ecommerce-business-plan
December 14, 2022
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8
min read
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Written by: 
Nikolaus Hilgenfeldt
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Category:
Ecommerce Basics

6 Steps To Create An Ecommerce Business Plan

Trying to figure out how to begin a business plan for your new online store?

You are at the right place, then.

While it's true that anyone can launch an ecommerce business, doing so well requires a well-thought-out plan. 

And, even though creating a strategy for a business might seem overwhelming, it doesn't have to be.

This article will explain why you should and how to create an ecommerce business plan for your business.

Besides that, we will discover a method that can ensure the viability and success of a strategy you develop.

Let's start!

Why Do You Need A Business Plan?

Did you know that roughly 70% of businesses that last at least 5 years stay true to a properly planned out strategic business plan?

A business can only succeed with a well-thought-out plan. What’s more, statistics also show that 71% of fast-growing companies have a business plan.

Thus, a solid business plan serves as a road map for the company's actions and decisions, keeping you focused on the objectives. 

You can use it as a guide to make strategic decisions, keep your operations aligned with your goals, entice investors or acquire financing from banks. 

In the end, having a detailed and well-thought-out plan helps a business succeed by providing direction and structure.

Now that we know why it is mandatory for success, let’s discover how to create an ecommerce business plan on your own.

How To Create An Ecommerce Business Plan 

1. Conduct market research

Market research is essential for businesses to understand their customer base and identify potential opportunities. 

And its primary goal is to understand your target customers, the industry's competition, and growth opportunities.

Market research helps companies make informed decisions about product development, marketing strategies, pricing structures, and more. 

To conduct market research you need to:

🎯Gather data from relevant sources — This includes information from sources such as surveys, focus groups and interviews with customers or industry experts. For example, you can use platforms such as SurveyMonkey and SimilarWeb to get a fresh perspective and insights on various data sets.

survey-monkey-overview

🎯Analyze trends in the market — Current trends in your industry can help you to better understand customer needs and preferences. To gauge consumer demand for a specific item or set of services, you can use tools like Google Trends.

google-trends-analytics

This information can be used to design efficient advertising campaigns that speak to particular target markets and increase overall success rates.

Additionally, it can guide business decisions concerning goods or services provided by competitors to maintain competition in the market.

2. Outline a business model 

A business model is the company's blueprint for producing and distributing value to its clientele. It includes everything from the company's value proposition to its essential resources and activities, costs, revenue streams, and marketing plan.

A business model's goal is to reveal the critical success factors for a given business.

It's a tool for gauging a company's potential for success and pinpointing where entrepreneurs need to concentrate their efforts.

The first steps are as follows:

1. Describe how you will start making money from selling products online

The most common way is to sell products through an online store or marketplace, such as Amazon, eBay, or Etsy

best-sellers-amazon

Other ways include setting up a subscription service, selling digital products, or providing consulting services.

Subscription services allow readers to access exclusive content not available on your regular blog. This could be premium articles, videos, audio content, or even physical products. 

You can charge a monthly or annual fee for access to this content.

2. Define the type of product you want to sell

Depending on the kind of product you're selling online, there are different ways to make money.

For instance, if you're selling physical goods, you'll need to think about shipping expenses and how to set competitive prices.

You can sell your products directly to your customers if you're selling digital goods using a platform like Gumroad or Selz.

Using Shopify or another ecommerce platform, you can also create an online store.

shopify-store

Alternatively, you could use an affiliate marketing program to sell goods.

You can market other people's products on your website or blog through affiliate marketing and get paid when a customer makes a purchase.

One well-liked method for selling goods online is through Amazon's affiliate program

amazon-affiliate-program-fees

You can begin promoting products on your website or blog as an Amazon affiliate.

3. Set your financial goals

Setting clear objectives for profitability, cash flow management, and budgeting is essential for any business. 

However, ensuring that these objectives are attainable within your timeline is essential. Otherwise, you'll likely end up disappointed and frustrated.

Here are some personal tips to keep in mind when setting achievable objectives:

💡Start small and gradually increase your goals as you become more comfortable with the process.

💡Be realistic about your expectations. Don't try to accomplish too much too quickly.

💡Create a detailed action plan outlining how you will achieve each objective.

Other, more professional-based pieces of advice for establishing financial goals include:

🎯Establish Revenue Goals — Determine the amount of revenue you want to generate from your ecommerce business and set a timeline for achieving it. 

🎯Set Costs Goals — Decide how much money you are willing to invest in operating expenses like website hosting, advertising, customer service, etc.. This can help you stay within budget while still running a successful online store. 

🎯Monitor Profitability — Track key metrics such as gross margin percentage and net profit margin on an ongoing basis to ensure your business is profitable over time. 

🎯Automate Accounting Tasks — Invest in accounting software that will help automate tasks such as invoicing customers, tracking inventory levels, and generating financial reports.

By including financing goals in your business plan you can determine how much you should save, borrow and invest to meet your financial goals. 

In addition, they can help you carefully monitor your cash flow and make sure that you have enough money on hand to cover unexpected expenses.

4. Develop an overall marketing strategy

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this step, as the best marketing strategy will vary depending on the products or services you offer, the target market, and the available resources. 

However, there are some general principles that should be followed in developing an effective marketing strategy.

First, it is important to have a clear understanding of what products or services are being offered and who the target market is. 

This will help to determine what kind of marketing activities will be most effective in reaching potential customers. 

Some of the best practices include the following steps for developing an effective marketing strategy:

🎯 Identify Your Target Audience — One of the most important aspects of creating campaigns that successfully turn prospects into clients or customers is knowing your audience. Think about demographic details like age, gender, location, income, interests, and hobbies, etc., to craft a message that will resonate with the target audience.

🎯 Establish Your Brand Identity — Building a distinct identity for your brand is crucial if you want to separate yourself from the competition and reach your demographic. Establishing a brand identity encompasses things like designing a logo, crafting a visual style, and delivering consistent messaging across all platforms in order to win over customers and win their trust.

coffee-banner

🎯Choose Your Channels — Consider your audience and objectives to determine the best marketing channels to use. Depending on your needs, you can choose from various methods, such as social media, email campaigns, SEO, blogging, etc.

email-active-ads

🎯Create Content That Resonates With Your Audience — Once you know where to find your target audience, you can start making content that will actually interest them. Consider the most popular search queries used by your target audience to find answers to the problems you can help them solve.

By creating an effective marketing strategy you can effectively raise awareness about your business and establish authority in your industry.

5. Establish a customer service plan

When it comes to providing excellent customer service, you should outline how you will deal with customers, your expectations, and your actions if things go wrong.

Here are some tips for creating an effective customer service plan:

1. Define your customer service goals — What do you want to achieve with your customer service? For example, do you want to increase customer satisfaction? Reduce complaints? Improve loyalty? 

2. Train your team — Make sure that everyone on your customer service team is properly trained and knows how to handle customer inquiries and complaints.

3. Set up systems and processes — Having well-defined systems and procedures in place will help to ensure that your customer service runs smoothly and efficiently.

4. Monitor and measure — Keep track of your customer service metrics and review your performance regularly. This will help you to identify areas that need improvement.

5. Be responsive — Make sure your customers feel their concerns are being heard and addressed on time.

6. Be proactive — Try to anticipate customer needs and address them before they even have a chance. Describe how you handle customer inquiries, returns/exchanges, and shipping processes. 

Having a good customer service plan can help you become a better customer service representative, which in turn can help you keep more customers rather than lose them.

6. Secure funding sources

Last but not least, a reliable stream of funds is essential for realizing all of this as a business

And choosing the best source of funding for your business can be crucial for your growth.

You may already be aware that, for instance, asset-based financing is just one of many alternatives to traditional bank loans.

Why asset-based financing?

Asset-based financing is an excellent option for businesses that need quick access to capital without taking on debt. 

It allows enterprises to leverage the value of their assets (such as inventory, accounts receivable, machinery, and equipment) to obtain short-term or long-term funding. 

For example, Myos enables you to increase product orders, launch brand-new products, and invest in marketing without exposing yourself to liability (products serve as collateral).

myos-financing-process-in-three-steps

Whether you sell your good on a market place or directly to your customers, we can finance you with a flexible repayment schedule within 24 months

Furthermore, the interest rate and financing amount are determined by an AI, and the total amount of a loan from Myos can be anywhere from £10,000 to £2,500,000.

duration-of-a-financing-project-myos-information

Asset-based financing can provide cash when needed, help cover operational expenses, or fund expansion projects. 

Additionally, it offers more flexible repayment terms than traditional bank loans and typically requires less paperwork and fewer qualifications for approval.

Wrapping Up

While the business plan is just the first step, if you make a good one and keep it going strong by staying up to date on ecommerce trends, you should be able to launch a successful business with ease.

We hope that these steps on how to create an ecommerce business plan can help you start your online store in no time.

And, whether you're just getting started or already have a thriving business, Myos can help you set up a reliable source of cash flow that can scale with it.

Why Myos?

As a merchant's growth partner, Myos offers loans backed solely by goods.

As a bonus, you only have to pay interest for the time that you actually use the money, and you can pay it back whenever you like as long as they make sales.

Myos’ Basic Requirements?

To get an asset-based loan from Myos, your ecommerce business needs to fulfill the following requirements:

  • It is registered in the UK or the EU.
  • It is operational for at least 6 months.
  • It was selling online for at least 50 days (e.g., on Amazon, eBay, online shop, etc.).
  • Your products have at least a one-year shelf life.
  • A product's minimum price is 5 EUR (EU) or 5 GBP (UK).
  • Your merchandise is available.
  • COVID-19, branded watches, ammunition, and weapons aren't included in your project.

What does Myos offer?

  • AI evaluation of your products
  • Financing solutions for D2C and marketplace sellers
  • Loan range £10,000-£2,500,000
  • Only goods as collateral
  • No personal guarantee or liability
  • Online application in 3 steps
  • Fast financing (24h-72h)

Sounds tempting?

Sign up with Myos today and get your business plan off the ground with reliable funding and zero sweat equity

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