10 things you need to start selling online

  • Starting a business online is not as difficult as it looks. To begin with, you may think that you need a lot of  time and money to start selling online. But the truth is that building an online Store is rather easy and cheap if you count with appropriate partners and you are clear about the priorities. 

    If you have been considering to build an online store, but do not dare to do it, I am sure that you will Love to know which are the 10 things you need to start selling online. There are only 10 essentials, it's easier than it looks! 
  • 1. The product

  • What do you want to sell? That is the first thing you have to be clear about. 

    The choice of the product to sell determines aspects as important as the storage space you needd or the costs of packaging and shipping. The thing is that, the more bulky your product is, more expensive it will be to store, package and send it. You must consider all these costs when you calculate the profitability of your business. 

    In this sense, a good idea is to specialize in selling a product for particular small market niche, easy to store and send,and which does not suppose a huge initial investment if you have it in stock. In other words: it will be easier for you to start selling underwear big sizes online, a more specific product, than  trying to be Zalando. 
  • 2. The eCommerce platform

  • To start selling online, it is clear that you need a commercial platform, a place where your customers can buy your products and you can put them on sale. But you don't need an airplane! There are eCommerce platforms that will allow you to have a fully professional online - as for example Oleoshop for a small amount of money and very easily

    If before jumping in the deep and sell online on your own domain, you want to test your business model, you can also start creating a small online shop  on marketplaces such as eBay or Amazon, where you generally don't pay for using the platform but only a commission for every sale. 
  • 3. Logistics

  • Logistics is much more than just shipping the product to the customer, and is you should study the different possibilities and compare lots of information

    Let´s start with the warehouse: Is is worth paying for it? Or, is it better to outsource the logistics warehouse and leave the preparation of packages in your courier service hands? 

    Second, the delivery options you want to offer. The most common are deliveries in 24 h, 48 h or 72 h. But depending on the kind of audience you have, you may want to offer shipping that takes longer but are cheaper (Correos). Or even sending on Saturday, by time zones or same day delivery. 

    And third, it is also advisable to count at the same time with several courier services. You will realice how important it is especially in high seasons, like Christmas. 

    A very important point to take into account is the level of integration of the courier chosen with your eCommerce platform

    • Does the chosen courier offer ease of integration with your platform? 
    • Are there any plugins or integration modules, or custom made (and pay for them)? 
    • What extra work will generate working with one or another courier? 

    For example, in Oleoshop we offer complete with Shipius, a specialist in eCommerce, a smart courier integration so you can focus only on your business and leave logistics in experts hands.
  • 4. Suppliers policy

  • Something that we tend not to bear in mind when we begin tosell online is that there is no formula to supply with product ourselves As an alternative to the classic stock purchase, we can bet on dropshipping or adopt a purchase model supplier on demand or through pre-sales

    You must also take into account that each supplier has its requirements: there are those that ask for minimum purchases; others require crossed purchase or certain anual rotations; and others do not impose any condition. 

    In this sense, it is advisable to compare prices, delivery speed, purchase conditions of different types of suppliers that are able to supply you with the same product. For example, manufacturers, national wholesalers and foreign wholesalers, since they tend to offer very different prices and services. 

    Search, compare and... keep the best deal! 
  • 5. Packaging

  • It is clear that you cannot send any package without boxes .But it is also important not to  go bankrupt buying kilos of cardboard. that you don't know if you'll end up using because you do not know how your business will work,

    Luckily, today you can invest in packaging as you go selling: services such as Selfpackaging or Kartox allow you to buy easy to assemble cardboard boxes in small shipmens to go investing in packaging as your business grows. 

    The same with stickers and labels: try to have a look to Moo or the new service of custom labels of Kartox service. And if you are planning to outsource the warehouse and the handling of your packages. Courier could provide you with boxes and charge you only for those you use. 
  • 6. Content

  • At this point, it is time to add the content of your online shop. Of course, it is important that you take care of writing, grammar,and spelling of your descriptions. Also, use nice potos so that the product´s details and features can be seen clearly. But it is also important that your descriptions 

    Include details that the customer will need to convert their interest into purchase. 

    • A good product description must include: 
    • The benefit of the product: in what sense will it make the client's life better? 
    • The USP (Unique Selling Point): what does this product differ from other similar or being part of the same product category? 
    • Additional benefits: in what other aspects (in addition to the main one) will improve the life of thecustomer? 
    • Detailed product description: a detailed description of the characteristics of the product, including information abput what it is made of, and its features.  
    • Technical data: size, sizes, materials, maintenance, cleaning and conservation tips , weight, size of packages... The relevant technical data are different in each business. 
    • Extra bonus: it is an accelerator of the conversion and it is recommended to use it because it creates urgency. It may be a notice of free shipping, free samples with order, last units ,exclusive discount, etc… 
  • 7. Payment methods

  • For those who do not want to get complicated with payment methods, PayPal is a very good solution. It allows customer to choose between paying by bank transfer or credit/debit card, and you, as business, don´t have to set up and install the virtual POS of a bank. 

    When your business has already taken off, you will see that it is advisable to offer a wide flexibility and variety payment methods. In Spain, there are still people reluctant to give their card data in online shopping, and for this reason, cash on delivery and bank transfer payments. work very well . In this sense, Oleoshop gives you the option of payment by direct transfer with Sofort, a payment method full of advantages

    If you manage to combine cash on delivery and transfer with PayPal and a virtual POS, you will have the best combination of payment methods for your customers. And, if you choose Oleoshop, you can set up your shop with the following: 

    • Redsys (any Bank of Spain) 
    • CECA (some banks, like Caixa Galicia) 
    • PayPal 
    • PAYU (for Latin America and Central America) 
    • Sofort (payment by direct online transfer) 
    • TefPay (Centralized TPV for online and physical shops) 
    • Cash on delivery
    • Payment in store 
  • 8. Communication

  • You have just started and nobody knows you, but don't worry: you are lucky to live in the 21st century, the century of social networks!  Social networks and brand blogs are the best way to be known with a minimal investment. 

    When your business begins to move, you can assess to start with email marketing, develop a link building strategy, or promote your appearance in the media through an outsourced press office . 

    But don´t think about doing it all at once, because you will have thousand of commitments and you will not be able run the shop. In communication, slowly but surely, and hire external help if you cannot do everything by yourself. 
  • 9. Refund policy

  • One of the things that scares to an online entrepreneur more are refunds. First of all, we fear that people get crazy and take their purchases back their purchases, leading us to bankrupt due to shipments. But as soon as we starte selling, we realize that refunds are very unusual and, there is a reason when they happen: nobody asks for a refund just for fun. 

    And on the other hand, it is known that offering free refunds is one of the things that most encourages a customer willing to buy. Although at the beginning you are relunctant, having a generous and flexible refund policy will benefit you in the long run. And even if your policy is not extremely generous, keep in mind that you must always comply with what the law stipulates. 
  • 10. One consultant/ accountant

  • You don't need to hire anyone to start selling online. But it will be of big help having the support of a good consultant, tax consultant or accountant who deal with figures: 

    billing, calculate taxes, warn you of the existence of subsidies and tax incentives, and generally help you to move forward and make your business grow

    A consultant taking care of figures doesn't have to cost you an arm and a leg: for what you spend on mobile or electricity, you can have a good ally to save you from a lot of work off. 

    As you can see, it is possible to start selling online having only these 10 points tied, not too many. We encourage you to create your online shop, it is easier than you might think. 

    Images | Fotolia.

Laia Ordoñez

Laia Ordóñez is a copywriting & eCommerce content marketing expert. She is Content & Marketing Manager at DueHome, a copywriting & content independent advisor, and Oleoshop's blog's editor-in-chief.

search posts

Last posts

This website stores data as cookies to enable the necessary functionality of the site, including analytics and personalization. You can change your settings at any time or accept the default settings.

cookies policy


Necessary cookies help make a web page usable by activating basic functions such as page navigation and access to secure areas of the web page. The website cannot function properly without these cookies.


Personalization cookies allow the website to remember information that changes the way the page behaves or the way it looks, such as your preferred language or the region in which you are located.


Statistical cookies help web page owners understand how visitors interact with web pages by collecting and providing information anonymously.


Marketing cookies are used to track visitors on web pages. The intention is to show ads relevant and attractive to the individual user, and therefore more valuable to publishers and third-party advertisers.