Ecommerce has been making a splash ever since Amazon made it big in the late 90s. But with an estimated 12-24 million ecommerce stores active online, you might be wondering whether it’s a business venture worth pursuing. After all, with so much competition, can you expect to make an impressive profit from selling products online?

The answer is a resounding yes.

Ecommerce is not just proving to be profitable in 2021, as predictions show that it’s destined to grow over the next few years.

So, if you’re still on the fence about opening up an online store, the following are the top reasons you should start an ecommerce business in the next six months.

Consumers Are Becoming More Comfortable with Shopping Online

One of the leading reasons to consider starting an ecommerce business is that there are more and more ecommerce users worldwide.

For example, Statista predicts that there will be 4,934.6 million ecommerce users by 2025. That’s more than half of the world’s population.

And, if you’re looking for something more than predictions to push you towards pursuing this type of venture, consider consumer behavior statistics.

A 2021 report by Raydiant observed that 40.3% of respondents decreased their number of visits to physical stores during the Covid-19 pandemic. Google found that 66% of buyers turn to online shopping to discover products. And Nielsen observed that in 2020, 45% of buyers chose to shop online because it felt safer than in-store visits.

As you can see, there is no question about the role of ecommerce in the present and future of shopping. While it may not have reached its full potential yet, it will become, without a doubt, a substantially important part of all industries.

Ecommerce Is Universally Available

Another excellent reason to consider starting an ecommerce business is that convenience-oriented consumers simply prefer it. A recent study by Linnworks discovered that:

  • 3 in 4 shoppers planned on buying more online than before the pandemic.
  • 76% of consumers chose online purchases due to convenience.
  • 45% of people prioritized convenience over price when making purchasing decisions.

So what is it that makes ecommerce so attractive for consumers?

Well, one thing is that it allows for a seamless shopping experience regardless of their location or preferred device. Note that more than half of all online traffic came from mobile devices in 2021.

Furthermore, shopping online doesn’t have to deal with space and time limitations. Anyone can visit and buy from an online store, regardless of their current location or local time. SaleCycle, for example, found that the peak shopping hours for ecommerce were between 8 pm and 9 pm, a time when most physical locations are already closed.

Finally, don’t forget that people love the convenience of having items delivered to their doors. Growing numbers of merchants are offering next-day and free shipping. This means that consumers can now receive their items more quickly without the hassle of having to go to a physical location to pick them up.

Running an Ecommerce Business Offers Freedom

OK, so it’s clear that ecommerce is here to stay, as well as that people are becoming increasingly comfortable with shopping online.

But what does running an ecommerce business offer to entrepreneurs?

Well, one of the most significant benefits of selling online is that it can allow you to be your own boss.

Always wanted a better work-life balance? An online business may be the answer.

Want to move to an exotic country and spend most of your workday at the beach? Ecommerce could allow you that.

Hope to build a successful business in your 20s and 30s then secure a profitable exit? Ecommerce is an excellent choice for this strategy as well.

It Doesn’t Have to Be a Full-Time Job

Depending on the type of store you decide to start, you’ll see that running a successful ecommerce business doesn’t have to take all day.

For example, if you outsource some of the tasks of keeping the store running, you can turn it into a passive source of income. That way, you’ll have to do only a couple of hours of maintenance per week.

You’ll also find that certain goods lend themselves quite well to running an online store with limited time. Consider selling digital products like:

  • online courses
  • website templates
  • stock photography & video
  • audio files
  • artwork, etc.

All of these options allow you to do the hard work once, then profit from people buying them for years to come.

It’s Easy to Get Started

Finally, if you’re still on the fence about whether starting an ecommerce business is the right decision for you, consider the fact that it is relatively easy to get started.

Yes, you have to come up with a solid business strategy. (Most importantly, this means identifying an unaddressed consumer need you can solve with your products and services). But, from there on, it’s smooth sailing.

Just make sure that you:

  • Choose the best platform for your specific requirements.
  • Adopt a consumer-oriented company culture.
  • Commit to keeping up-to-date on current trends.

With these three simple steps, your chances of landing on success will be greatly improved.

But to save yourself from a lot of disappointment, keep in mind that ecommerce isn’t a get-rich-quick business opportunity. More likely than not, it will take between two and three years to see profits from your venture. This means that you’ll either have to hold on to your job for a couple of more years or come up with a comfortable starting capital.

Furthermore, remember that people’s shopping habits tend to be seasonal, which means that certain types of products won’t see much interest for long stretches of time. If your priorities include consistency over quick profits, your best bet will be to focus on selling necessities.

Final Thoughts

For many people, starting an ecommerce business is the best way to accomplish their business goals, all the while retaining control over their work-life balance.

For others, running an online store presents an opportunity to make money on their own terms. Or even break into a competitive or niche industry.

Nonetheless, long-term success in the ecommerce industry isn’t as simple as just getting started. Yes, the industry offers great potential and is a superb playing ground for digital nomads. But, it also comes with a considerable failure rate, mainly due to poor research and inadequate business policies.

So, if you’re considering starting an ecommerce business, rest assured that it’s definitely a venture worth your time. But don’t forget that, like any other project, it will require a good amount of preparation, some starting capital, and constant research into how you can make your company work better for you and your customers.