You go through similar steps whether you open an online or offline business, and the only difference is what to prepare.
Let's compare the differences below.
for an ecommerce solution
In ecommerce, your website itself serves as store space.
Subscribing to a web hosting service and renting a web server is similar to the process of leasing a retail unit for offline stores.
In simple language, a web server is a virtual space where you can store any information needed for running your online store.
Once you create an admin account at Cafe24, you can get a free server.
for your store
Choosing a theme for your store is equivalent to decorating the store interior for offline stores.
For offline stores, you cannot change the interior easily once they are done, and it costs a lot to change them.
On online stores, however, you can easily edit your theme and choose whether to employ a professional designer or design a theme on your own depending on your budget.
product layout settings
You can easily display products or remove them from the shelves at offline store, but selling online requires more work to do, from shooting product photos, writing descriptions to adding prices and product names.
However, online stores can accommodate an unlimited number of products while physical stores have limited space to display products.
For a physical store, the storefront sign is where the store name is first seen.
Once installed, the sign is fixed in the same place and may lose its impact over time.
Domains play the same role as store signs for online businesses.
Customers use your domain to locate your store, so it is crucial to make a simple and memorable domain that showcases the identity of your store.
Make sure you put some thought into your domain name because you cannot change it once it is created.
Customers at a physical store pay for their items at the counter by cash or credit card, whereas online shoppers typically use payment gateway or money transfer services.
Online stores used to have basic payment options such as bank transfer, but advances in e-commerce have made a wide range of payment methods available to online shoppers.
Add various payment methods to your store to enhance customer convenience.
While offline customers do not need shipping services as they take their items right after they pay, online stores must deliver products to their customers; therefore, e-business owners need to find a reliable shipping carrier for fast and safe delivery.
Thoroughly compare a variety of shipping methods and carriers to choose the perfect one for your customers' needs.
If you open a store offline, you would conduct various promotional events, such as handing out fliers.
Likewise, you can also increase the visibility of your online store by implementing marketing and PR campaigns.
To learn more about successful campaigns leading to the first sale, go to [Getting Started > Starting Your Business > Making your first sale].