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Business Plan for Starting an SMB

E-Commerce

 
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E-Commerce for Small Business


Over 60 percent of U.S. households are online, and more than half of these households shop from home on a weekly basis. In fact, according to Ipsos-Reid, a leading research company, of the 100 million Americans who use the Internet, half of them will spend at least $500 shopping online this year. This means that if you’re not selling online, you’re missing a significant revenue opportunity. And with advances in technology, selling online has never been easier, safer, or more cost-effective.

An online store allows you to be open for business 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Not only is this an important convenience for your customers, it also means more revenue for you. An online store also helps you to reduce your overhead costs since you don’t need to hire reception staff and people to take orders. With the right payment processing tools, these functions are all done automatically for you. And lastly, an online store helps you to reach new markets—across the country or even outside the United States. A secure online store is no longer an option for a successful business, it’s a critical step in managing and growing your business.

The most important part of selling online is accepting payments from your customers for a single transaction (i.e., the purchase of an item from your Web site) or for a series of transactions (i.e., the payment of membership fees or installment payments via your Web site). Online payment processing offers customers the convenience of submitting their credit card or other form of payment on your Web site, and for you to actually receive the money from this transaction. Recurring payment processing allows you to set up regularly scheduled payments for your customers for a series of transactions.

 
 

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