HOW TO SET UP AN ONLINE PET SHOP?
Although e-commerce was introduced long back in the 1960s it was until the 2000s that it wasn’t as popular. Once normal people got access to the internet, it became more and more popular and looks like there is no going back from the online market. This popularity has also hyped the hopes of innovative ideas too such as having an online pet shop. It sounds astonishing to many people about how the business would function as it is not something inanimate. To have a platform for animals can be as difficult and interesting and kudos to those who are ready to invest in this business.
If you are one of them, let’s have a look at how you can set up an online pet shop:
Create a Plan
Decide beforehand what kind of online pet shop you want to open and what will be its size. With that decide what will be your reach. From where will you get the pet animals that are you interested to sell. Where will you keep them till the time they are being adopted or bought by the customer and do you have enough resources to take care of them. Along with that decide what will be your area of service.
Make a plan for what is going to be the size of your business at first. The growth will only follow if you thrive in the market and the online pet shop needs investment and time as animals need to be taken care of till the time they are with you and should be healthy and well.
Decide on the size of business
The online pet shop has a lot of scopes to grow but keeping in mind that you are starting an online store, it will demand a lot of screen time and awareness about how the e-commerce market works so, decide on the size of the business as arranging resources for it can be a task in itself, it is better to start small and develop as your customer base develops.
Decide your range
Time has become more interesting than ever and you must know that people have started to adopt a variety of pets. From birds to cats to fishes to dogs to tortoises and what not. Along with sorting the legal permission to sell animals, you also have to decide what will be your niche. Are you going to sell one species of animal or multiple and will there be more than one kind of animal? The business will expand and the list can always increase but decide first what is your introductory range and how influential it is and will it get enough attention.
License and Permit
To start any business in India, you need to have legal permission sorted beforehand to avoid any hassles with government officials. You’ll need to get yourself registered as a business person, get storage approvals, get a trade license, get yourself a GST registration, and get all the documentation handy.
If you are making your new brand, make sure you get a patent by your brand name so no one can copy your products.
Storage space and equipment
It is very important to take care of the pets and animals who are not sold and are with you in your inventory. Make sure you are equipped with all the resources to maintain their health and happiness. They should be fed regular and proper hygiene should be maintained to avoid any risks of infection amongst them.
Have the right supplier
It is important to have the right person or organization that will enable you access to those animals that you are going to sell. There might be some breeds that have to be imported from abroad and you have to take care of charges and arrange everything accordingly. If you want to run an online pet shop, you should know that it depends a lot on the demand of people what kind of breed or animal they want. You must do thorough research about how to ship animals without them getting affected. Getting the right distributor is one of the most important things for this business.
This is amongst the first things to do. The online pet shop demands a lot of equipment and arrangement of resources for the animal so the cost of setting this business can be a bit high. It will require a principal investment. Get yourself sponsors who are willing to support a local business and have your back.
Create a brand name and logo
Although this sounds very common before starting an e-commerce site, understand that a site name is very important to any site. All the catchy or direct names are usually taken for the online pet shops, so you must be creative with the domain name. Decide for yourself a brand name that people find appealing. If you are rescuing animals from the street, you can have a name describing that. You can also look for a name that has your personal story behind it. Make sure once you decide the name and logo of the site and company, get a patent.
Find a delivery system
The shipment of animals is the backbone of any online pet shop business. Make sure you choose a reliable one. It is important that the animals reach their new owners safely and are taken good care of during the journey. It’s so crucial that it can make or break your business. The delivery service you choose should be prompt and should have a strict contract and punctuality regime to follow. Customers will prefer to buy from you only when there is a seamless delivery system. Your investment is based on this.
Create an e-commerce platform
It is of prime importance! To set up an online pet shop online, you need to set up a user-friendly glitch-free website or an app. Appoint a technician who would be available at all times to prevent any probability of site going down as it is a big turn off for users. Make the online interface easy to use as it’ll be used by people of all age groups who are not tech-savvy. The easier and smooth the handle is the better will be the inclination of customers in using the site, creatively categorize the animals you have with you with fun descriptions and give a brief history of the health of animals and their breed.
Social Media presence and Marketing
Be ready to do a lot of marketing. Social Media is used by almost everyone around the globe. It is almost certain that at least one person in a household must be using any social media platform. Putting up pages on Facebook and Instagram, developing a strong SEO, and investing in marketing online can bring great audience attraction to your store. Putting up ads with discounts and amazing offers are always a plus. Along with online, spending on offline methods to propagate business is necessary. Go old school and hand out pamphlets in local markets. If you keep the quality of your products high, people are more likely to save your numbers to do business with you in the future so, you can invest in WhatsApp Business and use its marketing tools to propagate your business. It is convenient to use and digitally provides a personal touch as the medium is one-to-one messaging which has become one of the best provisions of converting prospects to customers.
To open any business, one should be ready to work hard and show a lot of perseverance and determination. Any business will have good and bad days but it depends on the owner how they want to go about it. Your online pet shop is going to be the same. It depends a lot on your style and quality and how the world reacts to it. Give your business time to grow and settle in this huge industry. You will definitely make it big with your talent so don’t get overwhelmed and enjoy the process. All the best!