Starting a website soon - Your tips and guidance needed!

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stuckeytabitha
Posts: 59
Joined: 26 Nov 07
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15 Apr 12 05:26:15 pm
I sell on CL and eBay on a small scale and am now doing Flea Market/Swap Meet/Mega Garage Sale type events. I have discovered a great product that will bring tons of attention to my booth and has a nice profit potential too. I buy liquidated items, shelf pulls, returns, etc and sell some online, some at the events. I now want to start a website that I can put on business cards and give out with the items I sell, especially my "attention getting item". They are called Water Beads and are super fun and eye grabbing. People can't help but to come and touch and ask what they are. I want people to be able to order more and get them to my site that way. On my site I will have my "attention item" as well as a huge variety of items that will change. Almost like an online garage sale/Craigslist type place as some items will be used but most likely new. A lot of the items will not be ones that do so well individually on eBay as shipping may not be worth it, but I would really push shipping deals for multiple purchases. Maybe "stuff a flat rate box" with smaller items or free shipping on additional items if they order something larger and I can just combine it.

Anyways, I am looking at different options for starting a website. I have a friend that has mentioned using a Wordpress site, but I'm not sure about how that will look. I of course need to be able to constantly update inventory and have good checkout features (PayPal? Google Checkout?). I've also heard of ".info" sites as being free? Salehoo site is an option too, but I need to research if the price is fair.

Venturing from local "garage sale" type venues to my own website, will I need to establish a business license, etc? My state doesn't issue a tax ID number but says to use the business registry number. I haven't registered my business name yet. That's another area I that I am conflicted about. Because my items vary, my business name and website name isn't as easy to come up with. I was going to use Tabitha's Treasures, but I'm thinking it would be great to incorporate the item that will be a constant for me (the water beads) in my website name in case people google looking for it, but then what about the other items?

Any advice on web hosting, business name, website name, and do I need a business license now????

Thanks!

Full Member
fm1234
Posts: 838
Joined: 14 Dec 05
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15 Apr 12 07:03:41 pm
Lots of questions, and some will no doubt get multiple answers, many of which are conflicting. For the record, .info domains are not free. They are typically very affordable to register, then run up to normal domain prices when it comes time to renew -- but also, from a brandability point of you they are garbage. Get the closest .com to what you want that you can. The reason is not because .coms are magic or anything, but because of how you are mixing off- and online presence and promotion. It is essential that people can remember and spread the word about your online store after they've been through your booth (attaching a card is great too, but many if not most cards are going to make it past the parking lot.)

So, get a name that passes what domainers call "the radio test" -- ie. if the name is spoken out loud, does it need spelling or any other clarification? If so, trash it and find another one. And by extension, particularly in American markets, despite decades of other TLDs being available, consumers still "think .com." Any website name they hear, they will automatically check the .com in a huge number of cases. For purposes of brand-building I would never go for a .net or other alternative TLD, unless it tied into the name (ie. if the name rhymed with "net" or the site was a video site, in which case I'd grab a .tv if a good one was available, etc.)


Frank


"Failure is not when you fall down. Failure is when you don't get back up."

--J.J. Luna
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fudjj
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Joined: 27 Jul 07
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15 Apr 12 10:16:49 pm
Frank has given you some solid advice in regards to domains, however I'm a little more liberal in my thinking. Dot coms are of course the most widely used and preferred, but I personally like .CO as well.

Dot TV is a killer domain for anything video related. I've use that in the past and found it to be easy to market. Domains like, .info and so on, stay well clear of. They are not seen as a serious domain and won't give you any value whatsoever in building an online brand.

It also comes down to where your market is and how you are marketing to them really.

In regards to picking your business name. I wouldn't be too concerned about linking your niche product to your business name, unless that is your speciality. Linking your name to one product can serve to focus customer's attention on that product, at the expense of marketing other products where other products are of course involved.

Don't worry about ensuring your domain matches your eBay name, it's probably better that you don't if you are developing your own site as well. Using eBay as a sales funnel for your own site can be very beneficial, however eBay should only ever be used as a sales funnel, not to be then marketed in reverse by directing traffic from your other site/s back to eBay.

Why?

Costs!!

If you have your own site then you are not having to pay eBay fees, so the last thing you want is people using your eBay store when you already have them using your site where your margins are greater.

I would suggest using a completely different eBay name to any domain you register, so people can't make the link between your site and your eBay site personally.

Finally, no, you do not need to be a registered business to have an eBay shop or your own website.


Mark (fudjj)

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SaleHoo.com

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richelle_salehoo
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Joined: 20 Oct 08
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16 Apr 12 01:45:05 am
Hi stuckeytabitha,

You might want to consider SaleHoo Stores our very own easy-to-use webstore builder.

Most sellers who do set up their own webstore find that they pull in a whole new market of buyers. Plus, unlike on eBay, when you sell on your own website, you have the opportunity to increase your prices because you are not selling alongside other sellers offering the exact same items. In addition, because there are no eBay or marketplace fees, you can save a lot of money!

With all these benefits to be enjoyed by owning your own webstore, we wanted to make it easy for sellers like you to get your own one setup and that’s why we built SaleHoo Stores.

SaleHoo Stores is our own easy-to-use webstore builder that makes it fast and easy get your own website and manage all your sales.

To learn more about SaleHoo Stores, please visit Link hidden: Login to view

To help you come up with a brand effective or traffic targetted domain name, you might find this post on Link hidden: Login to view helpful!

The process of registering your business may depending on your location since each state has their own procedure and policies. But this guide on Link hidden: Login to view shoud provide you a general idea of how to register your business.

Also, please check you inbox as I sent you a PM, more about SaleHoo Stores :)

Cheers!


Richelle

Customer Support Manager
SaleHoo Group Limited
Sell more with your own professionally designed and search optimized e-commerce website. Check out Link hidden: Login to view now!
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adislcs
Posts: 1
Joined: 06 Sep 11
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16 Apr 12 07:10:18 pm
Congratulation on your success. Operating own websites opens many doors and possibilities.

A website should not just look nice but has to convert for you and has to be easily found in the search engines. After all a website will be your representative to potentially millions of people. You need a partner that understands not just how to make pretty websites but also functional, easy to manage and marketable.

If you want I can recommend a great company out of San Jose ( 20 min away from EBay, Google, Apple, PayPal ).

We have been working with Link hidden: Login to view for the past couple years and great experience.

as far as hosting you may want to go with worlds largest hosting provider.
Here is a special link - Try their hosting for 1 cent. Yes 1 cent.

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good luck

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richelle_salehoo
Posts: 5226
Joined: 20 Oct 08
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17 Apr 12 02:14:14 am
Welcome to the forums adislcs :)

Thanks for sharing the information. Hope to see more of you around the forums!

All the best


Richelle

Customer Support Manager
SaleHoo Group Limited
Sell more with your own professionally designed and search optimized e-commerce website. Check out Link hidden: Login to view now!

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