Ever since the idea of online auctions came into existence, the online selling market has been on the rise. Many are interested but don’t know how to get started. There are still all kinds of ways to make money by selling online, whether you’re selling what you already have or buying and selling a store. Before we get started, here are a few general tips when selling anything online:
- Get a PayPal account. If you don’t have a PayPal account, you’ll want to get one if you’re doing business online. It’s the standard in online business for receiving payment and paying others.
- Take good pictures. Some of the options below don’t require you to actually take the picture and sell the product, but for the ones that do, make sure you take a clear picture that makes your product stand out from the others. If you’re going to be taking a lot of pictures, set up a small “studio-like” area in your home with a backdrop and proper lighting to really make your pictures come across as professional. And of course, you’ll want a good camera too.
- Be honest. If you’re selling used items, be honest about every dent, scratch, blemish, etc.. This will reduce many issues you could run into and keep your reviews positive.
- Do good business. Plain and simple. Whether you’re selling on a small site or opening an online store, your customer service matters. You’ll want to get those positive reviews and make a good name for yourself. Respond to questions, concerns, and complaints. Offer a guarantee if available.
Follow those guidelines and you will do well in online sales. When you’re ready to start selling, here’s where you go:
- Amazon – Have you heard of FBA? It stands for “Fulfilled by Amazon” and it’s getting pretty popular. Basically, you buy products (in bulk is best) and ship them to Amazon for them to store. When your products sell, Amazon packs them up, ships them out and sends you the money (after taking their cut). There are people making a full-time living from FBA, while others just do it for some extra money.
- CraigsList – Some things don’t ship very well. Other things may make you feel uncomfortable to sell to someone across the country. Anytime you’re selling a large item or something you just don’t want to ship, Craigslist is a great place to go. It’s simple to list your item (again, take good pictures!). If you don’t like the idea of putting your phone number out there, the interested individual can send you a message to your inbox without even getting your email address.
- eBay – Of course you can’t read an article about making money online that doesn’t mention eBay. You can start an eBay store and get serious about it or you can just sell some stuff to declutter your home. Either way, I’ve made my fair share from selling on eBay and it’s still a popular way to earn money. If you decide to start an actual eBay store, you’ll want to find a drop-ship business like Doba that will store and ship items straight to your customers so you don’t have to deal with an inventory.
- Etsy – If you like to create arts and crafts, you can sell them on Etsy. It’s completely free to open an Etsy store. You simply sign up, post pictures of your creations and starting selling. You can choose your payment option, but PayPal is generally the easiest. Etsy makes it easy to sell and keep track of your inventory. There is a small listing fee and they take 3.5% of every sale you make.
- Facebook – Facebook swap shops are great for selling things locally. It’s like CraigsList, but a little easier. You simply search for swap shops in your area and ask to join the group. Once you’re in, take a picture of the item, write a quick description of the price and post it. It doesn’t get much easier than that. You can generally expect to get about what you would get at a yard sale, maybe a little more.
- Masoko – The world around us is changing fast and all around the call to action to participate, engage, share and buy. We as consumers are becoming more sophisticated in our needs and we have increasingly become interested in the conveniences we can afford with the quality of goods and services taking precedence over quantity. Lifestyle brands, technology brands, innovations, and trends are coming out of Africa, and as you have noticed, the world is turning to Africa for inspiration. Nobody understands this space better than Safaricom and they have played a big role in putting Africa and specifically Kenya, on the innovations map. Masoko is one such innovation that is going to change the way Africa shops! Get ready to experience the convenience of shopping the best deals in an online shop and marketplace offering tech, fashion, the latest trends and everyday essentials.
- Shopify – Establish your brand online with a custom domain name and online store. With instant access to hundreds of the best looking themes, and complete control over the look and feel, you finally have a gorgeous store of your own that reflects the personality of your business.
- Jumia – Jumia, Kenya’s no. 1 online retailer was established in May 2013 with the aim and vision to become the one-stop shop for retail in Kenya with the implementation of best practices both online and offline. Jumia is the largest online retail store in Kenya. At inception they did an average delivery time of a week, today they do, on average, delivery in 1-5 days.
- rakuten – In Japanese, Rakuten stands for ‘optimism.’ It means they believe in the future. It’s an understanding that, with the right mindset, we can make the future better by what we do today. So they challenge themselves to evolve, innovate and experiment, to create a better, happier future for everyone. Today, their 70+ businesses span e-commerce, digital content, communications, and fintech, bringing the joy of discovery to more than 1.2 billion members across the world.
- Alibaba – They enable businesses to transform the way they market, sell and operate. They provide the fundamental technology infrastructure and marketing reach to help merchants, brands and other businesses to leverage the power of the Internet to engage with their users and customers. The businesses are comprised of core commerce, cloud computing, digital media and entertainment, innovation initiatives and others. Through their subsidiary Cainiao Network and investee affiliate Koubei, respectively, they participate in the logistics and local services sectors. In addition, they have a strategic relationship with Ant Financial Services, the financial services group that operates mainly through Alipay, the leading third-party online payment platform in China.