How to Start Your Own Online Business

If the idea of running a business from the comfort of your own bedroom appeals to you, then creating an online store may be just what you need. It’s a simple way to make extra income.

Recently, I’ve flocked to online sites to earn a little money on the side. Here and there, I’ve been selling my heels (that I’ve worn once the whole three years I’ve owned them), old books, and technology.

Since my father passed away, I decided to sell some of his leftover textiles and designs online to continue his legacy.

Online shopping is extremely popular. Many people prefer it because they can compare prices easily at multiple stores from the comfort of their own home.

Amazon is great to purchase things at a low price. You can find almost anything from grass (seriously) to a Mac on Amazon and it gives you different price options to the product that you’re buying so you can buy the one that caters to you.

In addition to scanning the site for deals, you can sell items that you don’t care for any longer- used clothes, CD’s, Movies, etc.

By selling back some of the things you’ve bought online, you can regenerate some of the money that you’ve spent.

Many college students are flocking to sites like Etsy, Ebay, Poshmark and more to sell their lightly used goods and original creations as a means of extra income.

On Etsy you can create your own store and sell anything that you’ve created or designed. It has a vintage feel and is perfect for selling pottery or paintings that you’ve made in one of your fine art classes.

“A lot of the products on the sites are a one time deal and can’t be found in stores so not a lot of people will have the same thing as you,” Angelie Baez (Sophomore from Iona College) said.

If you’re good at making jewelry, get a surplus of tools and accessories from a craft store like Michael’s and start creating pieces to sell.

“I love using Etsy,” Baez continued. “You can find unique things that will make for great gifts and it’s really cool because the products are handmade and most of them can’t be found in stores.”

If you have a great idea, but lack the skill to execute it, there’s a site called 99Designs where you can sign up and submit your own designs for clothing, logos, brochures, books, bags and much more.

You’ll work closely with people listing their products and you can get paid if they like and use your design!

Sites like Copius, Threadflip and Unclutter Your Closet are especially designed to help sell your clothes and accessories. On Quirky you can sell an invention of your own that doesn’t exist yet.

Poshmark is a popular Pinterest inspired online store where anyone can put a closet online. The site provides the shipping labels and lets you keep 80% of the selling price.

With any online store, the secret to being successful and getting a steady client base is being active on social media. Make sure to add your store link to your social biographies on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Whenever you can, create posts to promote the products that you’re selling. Once your business becomes more popular, you can then create a specific Facebook, Twitter or Instagram page to promote it as a brand.

If you’re a Pinterest user, pin your product, its price and link to buy it. The more places you can generate views, the greater the chance your product will have of selling.

Using hashtags is a also great tool because you can have your products come up on virtually any search engine under that specific topic.

Try using tags like #clothes, #fashion or #jewelry when selling clothing and accessories are simple ways people can find your brand or product. Keep the hashtags generic and don’t over-do them by adding more than 10 hashtags for one product.

Before making an online store or placing items on Amazon or Ebay, be sure to check the online store commission prices under their policy page.

Most sites will take a small commission from each of your sales or they will charge a flat rate.

If you don’t want to worry about losing that extra money to a site, you can simply create a PayPal account and set up your own website by using a web host like Wix or another private company.

It may take time to build and maintain, but creating an online business could lead to great success or at the very least, a few extra dollars in your pocket.

For any questions feel free to comment below!

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