The US economy has been showing some improvements in the last couple of years, but the recorded growth is not fast enough to keep up with growing pool of labour force.

The job market is still tough, especially for fresh college graduates.

As a result, many college students are coming up with ways to protect themselves from the harsh economic realities that await them upon graduation.

They are doing this by starting an e-commerce site and launching their own companies.

6 tips for starting an eCommerce site while in college

With 191.1 million online shoppers in the US alone, the eCommerce is really showing a lot of prospects.

Despite the fact that most of these students understand the internet and online business from a consumer’s perspective, most of them lack the expertise to integrate available infrastructure, protections, strategies, and backend operations to maintain a successful online business.

Here are a few tips every college student should take a look at before they launch an e-commerce business.

alphagamma 6 tips for starting an eCommerce site while in college entrepreneurship eCommerce

1. Choose a business that has low start-up costs

As a young aspiring entrepreneur, you’ll be tempted to start and set your sights high and go for a business that requires external funding.

This is not your best move since VC firms are careful where they put their money and will only fund ideas from experienced entrepreneurs; people who have built successful businesses in the past.

Start small and build your way up, you’ll get there.

2. Come up with a product or a service with a definite market

When it comes to online business and eCommerce, you don’t have to come up with a ground-breaking idea to run a successful company.

Just be creative and think of a simple product or service that will fetch a ready market wherever you are.

alphagamma 6 tips for starting an eCommerce site while in college entrepreneurship social media

3. Take advantage of social media

Social media can be a very effective marketing tool. Incorporate social media tools into your business strategy to expand your market and address customer service issues.

There is a new generation of consumers that utilize social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest as their primary mode of communication.

4. Take the necessary legal measures

Familiarize yourself with injury law in case your business is involved in a civil lawsuit. Protect yourself by setting the limit of your liability to conceivable levels.

Make sure that your eCommerce site has terms of use and a privacy policy.

For instance, you can disclaim any responsibility if the consumer uses one of your products the wrong way, resulting in an injury.

5. Strive to deliver a personalized experience

Develop an eCommerce platform that facilitates the delivery of a hyper-personalized experience to your customers.

Large eCommerce businesses such as Amazon use a customer browsing and purchasing trends to suggest relevant products/services and drive sales.

This way, these sites are able to give a personalized experience to a customer and increase the likelihood of them becoming a repeat customer.

6. Embrace big data

Big data isn’t a reserve of big corporations anymore. Don’t miss out since big data is revolutionizing the way businesses of all sizes create strategies and conduct their activities.

Enable real-time resource planning and seamless inventory management by integrating your eCommerce site with data analytics solutions.

Data analytic solutions will give your online business relevant insight to manage your resources efficiently and amplify sales.

The future of e-commerce

By 2018, eCommerce is expected to constitute 8.8 percent of the total retail market in the world.

At the moment, starting an online business while still in college is definitely a good idea.

The risks are minimized in case things don’t go as planned. You also stand to gain a lot of valuable experience and offers a myriad of benefits over conventional internships.

Are you running an eCommerce website yourself? How do you find these tips? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

For more business tips, check our entrepreneurship section and subscribe to our weekly newsletters.


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