An eCommerce business is an ideal choice for budding entrepreneurs who wish to start their venture with low investment. But the most important question that needs to be answered by them is – ‘what do I sell?’
We’ve decided to help answer that question by coming up with some interesting eCommerce business ideas for you. We’ve created this list by analyzing the latest trends and the present competition in the industry.
So let’s dig straight into it.
How to start an eCommerce business in India?
People can start by identifying their business niche with proper market research. Here are the required steps to start an eCommerce business:
- Find the niche
- Do an extensive market research
- Do a competitor’s research
- Choose an eCommerce business name. The best eCommerce business name ideas are always short, catchy, and easily spelled by the customers.
- Work on all the required licenses, valid permits, and legal procedures
- Apply for EIN (Employer Identification Number)
- Based on the business requirements, select an eCommerce platform
- Launch the eCommerce store and market the business
The platforms and tools you choose have a very important role to play in your success. Pick the platforms based on your needs and budgets. In the initial days, you might need a platform to build a website and to maintain accounts.
WordPress, Shopify, and Wix are some of the popular names that you can try while building your website. These are no-code/low-code platforms that let you build a fully functioning eCommerce store even without any programming knowledge.
As far as cost is concerned, it is typically determined by the number of products you intend to sell and the number of unique services you wish to offer. For example, WordPress and WooCommerce charge a nominal fee for a shared server, whereas Magneto charges much more since their services necessitate a 4GB VPS server, which is costly.
Many platforms offer free trials to test the platform and its interface. You can make use of it to ensure your money is well spent.
For maintaining your finances and customer details, your search will end with a platform like Lio. Lio offers an array of pre-created templates that lets you manage all the details in your smartphone.
Some of the popular templates loved by our customers include Profit and Loss Account Register, Order Book Register, Payment Received, Customer Details to name a few.
On that note, let us look into the top 10 eCommerce business ideas that you can implement right away.
Best eCommerce Business Ideas
Niche Jewelry Store
Niche products always sell. Period. They will always be in high demand regardless of the category you choose. But when you combine uniqueness with a high-selling category like jewellery, you are in for 100% success.
Niche jewellery works on a very simple concept – everyone loves to look good and different. Pick up segments that are hardly explored. On the check, for instance, is an eCommerce jewellery business that offers tribal designs from Africa to the rest of the world.
Specialty Fashion Store
Like jewellery, people cannot live without clothes. Big players like Myntra, Ajio, Nush have already established successful online fashion stores and are reaping the rewards.
They offer every kind of apparel and accessories for men, women, and kids. At the same time, they offer tremendous deals, discounts, and offers to the customers, which cannot be matched by a new entrant.
However, if there is one area where you can actually beat them, it is by offering unmatched variety in a special category. Select a segment and drill down to a level that is not serviced to a great extent in the online shopping world.
For example, pick a segment like eco-friendly maternity clothes for women in India and offer a wide variety of designs and sizes. Slowly, you will witness visitor count building for your website.
Online Food and Grocery Business
In recent years, the online food and grocery market have continued to grow exponentially with the advent of mobile apps.
Billions of people have started using apps like Zomato, Swiggy, Big Basket to order food and grocery products online. The pandemic increased the sales of these platforms even further, thanks to nationwide lockdown. You should know the grocery list to cover all the items in your store.
But even with the pandemic reaching its tail end (hopefully!), the food and grocery sector is far from saturation as everyone has to eat.
The online food and grocery industry will keep booming till there are people on earth. You can either choose to be a cloud kitchen or a food and grocery aggregator.
If you plan to become the latter, you can start at a small scale with local vendors and producers. Once your profit increases, you can easily scale up your business by establishing relationships with more vendors.
Apart from the online grocery and food business, you can also try your hand in the online bakery business.
Travel Agency Business
A large fraction of GenZ and Millennials love to travel. Currently, most travel agencies you find online offer travel solutions to all the popular places in the country, but most people of today wish to travel to ‘off-beat and ‘non-touristy places’. This is the gap you can fill.
Even though you can find everything on the internet today, people still find it hard to book transportation, lodging, and good food in such areas, primarily due to a lack of reliable and verified information.
As an online travel agency, you can not only book the hotels and transportation; you can even offer curated content about the destination, making the life of the traveller much easier!
Also, everyone loves a bit of personalization in travel. You can tailor the entire journey for such customers based on their special requirements. For example, a candlelight dinner on a boat.
Also Read: Best Business Ideas in India
Online Healthcare Business
Surprisingly, even a highly regulated industry like healthcare into the eCommerce sector. Not only did they enter, but they have succeeded tremendously. Your doctor, Practo, and Doctor2U are popular examples.
Though each of these brands operates under a different business model, the underlying concept is the same – offer medicines, virtual consultation with doctors and book physical appointments with the doctors at their clinics, etc.
The goal of these businesses is simple – save time for both patients and doctors. Luckily, this sector is still not a red ocean yet, and there is still room for more players to enter, especially if you offer something unique over and above the existing ones.
For example, you can start a 15 minutes medicine delivery business in your local area by partnering with different pharmacies.
An online store that caters to an international audience
Many people living outside India wish to purchase local products but are unable to do so due to a lack of enough shipping services for international audiences. Also, the existing businesses that offer international shipping often charge a shipping fee that is higher than the product value itself.
This presents a lot of opportunities for entrepreneurs who want to start an eCommerce store that can sell locally-produced products and ship them at an affordable rate to other countries.
Popular products that you can try include food items, festival-specific products, handicrafts, etc. But remember – it is important to partner with international shipping companies and negotiate a good deal with them for their transport services.
Online interior designer
Who doesn’t love to live in a house that is artfully and tastefully decorated? However, most cannot afford to hire an interior designer (even the less popular ones).
The usual practice is for an interior designer to visit the home multiple times, take measurements, create a visual representation of the space, procure raw materials, build the area according to agreed designs and hand it over.
All these cost a lot for the interior designer, and they transfer most of these costs to the customers. This makes them unreachable for most people.
Now an online interior designer can avoid most of these charges. They can just provide the imagination, skills, and knowledge necessary to create a functional and aesthetically pleasing space. The rest of the tasks can be arranged by the customer locally at a much lower price.
You can even use the help of technology like video conferencing, augmented reality, virtual reality to understand the structure and design of the house without even having to visit it.
To add to it, you can create an eCommerce store selling one-of-a-kind decorative things to people all over the world. You can take the help of popular eCommerce platforms that can help you build an eCommerce website in hours and help you manage the transactions from a single admin dashboard.
The platforms are simple to use and integrated with most websites and payment gateway providers, allowing the business owners to spend more time doing what they love — designing and selling their products and services.
Pet Care Products
Nowadays, a considerable percentage of the population owns a pet. Also, the trend to treat pets as members of the family has increased drastically.
The best part about this business is – pet owners are willing to spend money to get the highest quality of food products, treats, and toys for their pets.
As a newbie, you can sell these products to the customers. To be unique, you can offer add ons like recipes for the pets, tips to take care of them, treats, etc., on an eCommerce platform to reach a wider audience.
Once you expand, you can even offer customized subscription boxes of treat supplies or cross-sell them white-label pet food and kennels. Petsworld, Petshopindia, etc., are a few successful eCommerce businesses in this sector.
Online Education Services
Though not technically eCommerce, we will still add this to the industry as you are selling courses to customers.
Also, this is one of the most promising sectors as people want to upgrade their knowledge continuously to compete in the job market.
According to research, the online education service business is expected to increase to $286 billion by the year 2023. That is an increase of 80% over the numbers recorded in 2017.
Apart from selling courses, you can also partner with local bookshops and sell books to students in your locality. You can charge a small delivery fee for picking up and delivering the books at the doorsteps of the customers.
Beauty and Health Products Business
According to a recent report, the beauty and health products e-commerce business is expected to generate around $22 billion by 2024 at a steady yearly growth of 10%.
This industry is one of the most profitable sectors in not only India but also in the entire world. Again there are two ways to run this business.
You can either partner with the manufacturers or wholesalers of multiple brands or simply start a manufacturing business of your own and sell them to the customers only online.
If you are picking the latter option, you can always start with simple soaps and creams that are made naturally.
There is always a market for hand-made natural cosmetics as it is safe on the skin. If you do not know how to manufacture such products, you have hundreds of videos on YouTube teaching the same.
Also Read: Difference Between eCommerce and eBusiness
An eCommerce business is easier to start (as compared to a brick and mortar store) as it requires a comparatively smaller initial investment.
Also, one can sell almost anything online, from toys to beauty products. Being able to open and run an online store is one of the great delights and benefits of living in the internet era. So make the best use of it!
I hope with this article you have understood all about e-commerce and have a few ideas to run your own business.