How to Choose Your First E-Commerce Product

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Nov 10, 2016
How to Choose Your First E-Commerce Product
by Aimee Tariq,
Sept 29, 2019

If you’ve been wondering when to get into e-commerce, the answer is now. E-commerce is huge, and getting bigger every year. According to Statista, in 2014 the global e-commerce market was 1.3 trillion dollars. In 2023, it’s projected to be a whopping $6.5 trillion. The best time to get in was when it was still nascent. The second best time is right now.

“Okay,” you say. “But I have no idea what I’m getting into. How do I even choose what to sell?” A great question, and one that’s easier to answer than you might think, but it’s important that you get it right. The products you sell are fundamental to everything you do. They’ll affect your marketing, your profit margins and the design you use. Logistics and legal restrictions come into play, too.

Look for a Niche
The e-commerce field is saturated, but people are still finding profitable niches where they can turn a profit. Everyone wants to find the maximum audience and would love to be the next Apple, Google or Microsoft, but you’re often better off staking your claim on the niches.

Noted marketing thinker Seth Godin is one of the chief proponents of this. “Stake out the smallest market you can imagine,” he says in one of his personal blog posts. “The smallest market that can sustain you, the smallest market you can adequately serve. This goes against everything you learned in capitalism school, but in fact, it’s the simplest way to matter.”

Instead of just being one more wine provider, corner the market on Merlot from the Canadian Okanagan Valley. Or instead of just selling dice for tabletop gamers, produce specialized custom dice with die-cut carry cases for Warhammer 40K. If you can find a niche large enough to sustain you but small enough that you can be a major player, you’re in business.

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