Opening a Free Online Store – Easier than You Think?
Many people think of opening a retail store if they are considering starting their own business. Traditionally, you would need to lease floor space, purchase $1,000’s of product inventory, hire staff and buy store furnishings and supplies – among other things.
Now entrepreneurs can start online shops which cost significantly less money, but there is still a long list of tasks to be done, such as finding website hosting, building an e-commerce site, setting up a merchant account and more. The project can quickly get overwhelming.
Some people would not open an online store because of the time and cost involved. However, there are even more people who didn’t care about time or cost – but would get confused with the overwhelming process and simply give up.
Now, entrepreneurs have the option to open a free online store.
In fact, there are several different ways to go about it. You can sell your own products, sell other people’s products or put your designs on 100’s of customizable items.
Below, we have listed 13 different services that can help you open your own store for free. It’s a great way to make extra money during the holiday season or run a part-time business year round – without having to work 7 days a week!
Key Point: You don’t really have to know how to start an online store. There are platforms, software and tools that basically help do it for you…
You don’t have to know confusing HTML code, and you can use their professional design templates to create a cool-looking shop without a lot of work. They do have paid upgrades for special features, if you want them. However, it’s not required, and you can run you store completely free.
Storenvy provides quick and easy fully-customizable sites, as you’ll be able to see from looking at some of their stores. However, in addition to making a professional store for free, you can become part of their online marketplace which can get you a ton of new customers.
This is a full-featured service, including capabilities like being able to integrate your Facebook page with your store, access website stats and analytics, sell digital products, print invoices, track orders and more. The catch with this site, though, is that the free option allows only 100 visitors per day.
FreeWebStore is super simple, but also customizable. You can add your own company branding to make your shop stand out. You can also translate your site into different languages and integrate social media – including a free Facebook storefront.
Unlike many other free online store services, eCrater has its own community. This is where you can interact with other eCrater shop owners and get answers to questions and ideas for increasing your profit margin. Being able to network easily with other entrepreneurs in your same field can play a big role in any entrepreneur’s success. Another cool feature – you can import products that you are selling on eBay into your eCrater store.
Yokaboo was designed with the creative entrepreneur in mind. They provide lots of stylish store designs and are very easy to set up. You can use their free plan forever – with no strings attached. However, you can only list 6 products at a time. If you have less than 6 products to sell, well, this may be your store!
As of this writing, Muncom is new in Beta stage. However, it is already available in lots of different languages and enables free store owners to sell an unlimited number of products, with no set up frees, transaction fees or visitor limits. Designs are basic, nothing fancy – but you can connect your PayPal account to your site and you’re ready to sell!
Mystore not only lets you sell your own stuff, but you can sell items from other people’s stores as well. There is also a cool feature that lets shop owners donate a portion of their sales to a charity.
Jimdo has been known for years for its free websites. Now, free site owners can add the “Store” element to their account and turn their website into a store! If you are new to entrepreneurship, this can be a great way to get your toes wet as a business owner and start an online store business even while you still work at your regular day job. So, sign up for a free site account to get started.
If you specifically want to sell other people’s products or upload your designs to sell on 100’s of customizable products, check out these sites:
Connect your free site with affiliate platforms like Commission Junction, eJunkie, Amazon and Clickbank and get paid selling both physical and digital products. Free sites are supported with ads, so if you don’t want ads on your site, upgrade to one of their paid options as low as $49.95/year or choose another service.
Cafepress offers creative, artistic and humorous individuals to upload their designs and have them printed on a variety of different product – and then list them for sale. You can make money selling your products through your own store – and other people can sell your products for you – which generates even more income. Check out their site to get ideas of what you can do – free!
Similar to CafePress above, people can upload their artwork and have it printed on a variety of merchandise. And, of course, you can open your own free online shop.
As you might imagine, this is a very low-risk way to make money online. As long as you are going to use one service, it makes sense to use both, because you can upload your designs to both and double your exposure without working any harder.
And yes, same as the two above.