How to Start an Online Shoe Business

How To Start An Online Shoe Business

11/25/2022 12:36:51 +0000
So, you want to set up a shoe business online. Great idea! The footwear market, globally, has grown over the last few years and estimates suggest it will continue to do so for the next 5 years or more.
However, just because the online shoe market is doing well doesn't make setting up an online shoe business an easy task. You still need to put the hard work in and follow the recommended steps to ensure that your business is successful.
Here's what you need to know if you're going to run a shoe business online, from choosing your niche to building up your customer base.
1. Figure Out The Basics
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2. Develop A Plan For Marketing
It is recommended to start thinking about your marketing strategy before you start building your website or sourcing products.
That's because it's best to have a plan of action rather than ending up with a website and products to sell, but no clear path forward for bringing in customers.
You might decide that you're going to pay for advertising, or you might simply want to rely on search engine optimization for the time being.
Many brands will choose to create social media platforms to promote themselves, and email marketing campaigns continue to be very successful.
We recommend implementing a range of the above techniques if you want your shoe business to be successful.
Research has shown that combining a social media presence with impactful email marketing is one of the best ways to build a loyal customer base quickly.
Once you know which marketing approach you'll be taking, you can start working on ideas for your email content or social media pages, or start looking for the best advertising opportunities so that you can launch your marketing campaign along with your site.
3. Build Your Website
It's now time to build your website. You can do this yourself if you have web development and coding experience, but if not, there's nothing wrong with hiring someone to build the website according to your vision. In fact, most business owners do this.
Of course, you want your website to look great and have an intuitive user interface. Customers want to use a website that is easy to navigate, looks aesthetically pleasing, displays products clearly, and is mobile-friendly.
However, you also need to think practically about which ecommerce platforms you'll be integrating into your website.
If you want more customizability here, you should opt for open-source ecommerce platforms, but if you want to keep the technical side of things to a minimum, it's best to opt for SaaS.
Your site also needs to be optimized using SEO strategy (you can consult a specialist if you're not familiar with SEO) and you need to have both analytics and security in place for the benefit of your own business strategy and your customers' financial safety.
4. Source Your Products
If you have the skills (or a team with the skills) to make your own shoes for your online store, that's great!
However, most people don't have this resource, especially when they first start an online shoe business.
Therefore, most first-time shoe business owners will either choose to hire a wholesaler or manufacturer, or they'll hire a dropshipping service.
When you hire a manufacturer, you'll still have a say in what the product looks like and the materials used in its construction.
However, you won't have to do the work when it comes to actually making the product.
Alternatively, you can choose to buy your products from an established vendor and sell them on your website.
Obviously, this means the products are not your own so you'll be competing with other businesses who sell the same products, but it does cut down on time spent designing products and waiting for them to be finished.
You shouldn't just base this decision on how much work you feel like doing, though. There are other important factors to consider, such as how much each method would cost and the turnaround time you can expect.
Designing your own products and having a manufacturer make them for you sounds great, but if it means you're always out of stock, then that's a problem.
Similarly, dropshipping might sound like the easiest option, but it could mean that you don't get as many sales, particularly if your website isn't optimized correctly or your marketing strategy is lacking.
Final Thoughts
Starting a shoe business online is a process that requires careful planning and strategy when it comes to SEO and marketing.
Once you have the formalities like your brand name, logo, and business license out of the way, you need to build a website, devise a marketing plan, and figure out how you're going to source your products.
Your decisions should all fit into a carefully calculated budget to ensure that you're making sustainable and profitable business decisions
If you do all of the above and keep track of your analytics, you should have a thriving online shoe business in a matter of months.
About the Host
Sophie Howard is the founder of Aspiring Entrepreneurs, a community designed to help people develop the skills and confidence to build a business and a life that serves them. Sophie began online in 2013 with an Amazon firm, which she sold for more than $1 million in 2015.

Sophie has lectured on stages all around the world, encouraging and teaching other ambitious entrepreneurs. She has established instructional programs educating thousands of students how to sell online, in addition to releasing over 1000 products.

Sophie has also written a book titled "Aspiring Entrepreneurs: A Guide to Finding Your Best Path to Financial Freedom."
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