In this blog I have tried to compile the things that you need to go online in India.  Before we start  you need to know there are multiple online marketplace which lets you have a seller account example flipkart, snapdeal, and amazon where you can simply register and list your products on these sites and start selling, however these site will charge a certain percentage on sales. Here in this blog I will be talking about how to setup your own market place.

Domain name

Whenever we start some business we always ensure it to give it a name so that it is easy for the people to find it, similarly when we go online we have to book a domain name for your business. Example, www.amazon.in, this is a domain, amazon is the domain name and .in is the domain extension.

There are various domain extensions based on the industry, country, etc. for example industry specific, .biz – small business, .edu-educational institutes, .org – non-profits groups or trade associations, .info – resource website., .in – India, .uk – United Kingdom, .us – USA, .com is a universal extension.

For our website, I would suggest a .com or an .in extension and try to keep the domain name less than 3 words. You can buy the domains on BigRock and GoDaddy.

Web hosting space

You’ll need a space to host the data of your site on the web server, hence we need to buy host spacing. The best hosting space in the market is Hostgator, however there are many more service provider like godaddy, bigrock, etc. This hosting space is linked to your domain through the name servers in the domain console. The Name servers are provided by the service provider.

Based on your requirements i.e. you have a single or multiple domains choose a suitable plan. On hostgator, there are 2 popular plan

  • Hatchling Plan – lets you host single domain and gives u unlimited hosting space. It costs around ₹ 375/-month for a year.
  • Baby Plan  – lets you host multiple domain on the same hosting space and gives u unlimited hosting space. It costs around ₹ 455/-month for a year.

Here is a trick to save some money hunt for coupons on google you will get up to 30% off. On special occasions like Independence Day, republic day you do get 50% off but that’s on your luck!

For a people planning to build their sites on WordPress, I would advise buy a Linux hosting.

Content and conceptualizing your site

 Plan your content in detail, your content will be the key to earn customers, you need to clearly define whether you are selling or just displaying information of your business. Another important step is to Conceptualize, that is the look and feel of the website, the content on the homepage, the process of buying. Plan your site in detail, avoid a hooch pooch content on your homepage. Think like a customer!

Development of your site

Also remember there are 2 ways of doing things, one is you learn and do it yourself or get it outsourced. Getting your website built on WordPress is always a good option as development & updating the site is easy. Remember WordPress is just a platform to build and edit a site. The theme is the thing that makes it visible to the customers when they log on to your site. These themes are available for free and paid, free theme are restricted when it comes to customisation. Paid theme lets to customise the site to a greater extent.

U can buy themes on Theme Forest, usually most of the developers buy themes from this portal and simply integrate it on WordPress and charge you a bomb. If the developer develops the site using HTML coding then it is like building the site from scratch.

Payment Gateway

A payment gateway is a medium which enables u to do transactions online. You need to subscribe for these services which is a third party vendor and customers coming to your site will make payments to these sites and the payments are redirected to you into your subscribed bank account. Some of the payment gateway providers are – CCAvenue, PayU, PayPal, AirPay, CitrusPayments, etc.

I would advise you to a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate. What is SSL certificate? A SSL certificate verifies the authenticity and identity of a website owner, it uses https protocol and displays a padlock in the browser to indicate that it is trusted. This is issued by authorities like VeriSign and Thwate. This is a method to keep the data safe, the server passes encrypted data to the web browser, which is reconstructed by the browser.This certificate is provided by your Hosting space service provider which is provided by subscription costs around ₹1,350 – ₹ 2,760 based on the warranty levels on Hostgator.

Ecommerce Platforms


If you don’t want to get into the hassle of booking a domain and development and all the above mentioned steps you can simply go to platforms like Shopify, zepo, etc. These platforms take care of all these hassles and you simply start listing your products n start selling! However these companies charge quite a bomb, but based on your product and sales you can decide.

I would recommendWooCommerce, it integrates seamlessly with WordPress, and also covers Payment Gateways and shipments.

Shipment

You can subscribe from a number of shipment providers like Fedex, DTDC, Bluedart, Gati to name a few. Usually these service provide offer a wide range of services for ecommerce and prices vary based on weight and distance of the shipment. You also need to keep in mind whether the service provider offer u to have Cash on Delivery option along with the delivery. In order to track shipments you can simply subscribe to Aftership, ShipRocket and Mypacco.

Taxation

 It’s not required to set up a company to do ecommerce, in India, but I would recommend you to register as a sole proprietor. However some payment gateways asks for Business ownership documentation, so it’s better to just register an LLP. I have been a partner in LLP and its very easy to setup. You can also consult a CA or a Lawyer for better details or check out  MyOnlineCA.

You can read about marketing your sites here.

Shiv Mamadapur
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Shiv Mamadapur

Shiv Mamadapur, a passionate Marketing & Brand Management Professional. The blog shares a variety of Case Studies, Marketing Tips and a reflection of his thoughts social and political affairs.
Shiv Mamadapur
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