Selling goods on the Internet has many advantages. With online store fronts offering a low cost to get started, and a number of easy to use online selling services, almost anyone with a product can set up shop with a home startup of their own. Unlike a traditional storefront, an online store can open with close to zero overhead (other than some space in your apartment to store that merchandise).
ShopifyShopify is one of the newer offerings available in the DIY ecommerce space, and offers highly customizable and professional online stores. With various pricing tiers to cater to businesses large or small, and a free tier to get you started, Shopify is geared towards the serious seller while still offering entry level options for your home business. From their website:
Shopify provides you with an ecommerce website, an easy to use administration area, and secure hosting — everything you need to sell your products online. Start by choosing from over 100 ecommerce templates in the Shopify Theme Store. Customize your site's design: Upload a logo, change colors, fonts and more. You have full control of your website design, HTML & CSS.
Here at Apartment Therapy we often cover the unique items found over at the fantastic DIY seller community at Etsy. With their mission to be "the world's handmade marketplace", the goods available on Etsy are incredibly unique and eclectic. From their website:
Our mission is to empower people to change the way the global economy works. We see a world in which very-very small businesses have much-much more sway in shaping the economy, local living economies are thriving everywhere, and people value authorship and provenance as much as price and convenience. We are bringing heart to commerce and making the world more fair, more sustainable, and more fun.
Even if you're not the creative type, you can even make a few bucks on Etsy just by having a unique eye for great finds. My partner made quite a few sales here, picking up vintage women's clothing from a retail vintage store, and reselling her unique finds in her Etsy store.
Society6Society6 offers a really remarkable service for selling your work online. Setting up an account with the service allows you to upload high quality images of your work, which can than be sold online as prints of various sizes, t-shirts, canvases, and even skins for your iPhone or laptop. What makes Society6 unique is the offering of a truly zero overhead business. Since you're simply supplying the artwork, while they handle all the manufacturing, selling and shipping, Society6 is a fantastic way for artists and designers working from space-limited apartments to make and sell hard goods and profit from their creative work.
If you're looking to bring in some extra cash, or looking to push your home manufactured goods online full time, picking the right online marketplace is key. Luckily, there is a space for home business at all scales, whether it be reselling antique or vintage finds, DIY crafts, or prints of your own creative artwork. If you're considering starting a home business, take a look at some of the great services available to you and take a chance on your own online store today.
(Images: Screenshots as linked, lead image by Sean Rioux)