This blog is about Graphic Design, Vector Art, and Cartoon Illustration

How to start selling on the web

The web is a great place to buy and sell. If you have a product that you would like to sell, chances are that you have considered ecommerce. It can be extremely complicated to set up correctly, and remember that you are dealing with real live people out there and their real money, so it's more important to get it right than to be too fancy. If you want to avoid making a mess of things, I recommend taking these baby steps -

• Start with Amazon. If you have never purchased anything on Amazon, start there. If you are a regular Amazon buyer, sign up to be an Amazon seller. You can only sell things on Amazon that are already for sale there, so look for the "sell yours here" button on every page. Remember that this is a baby step. From here you are going to learn how to package and ship your items. I recommend selling old books that you don't plan on reading anymore, that's how I started. You will be surprised at how much you have to learn just about packing boxes, purchasing postage (which you can do online) and other logistics issues.

• Sell on eBay. If you have never purchased anything on eBay, do so. If you have purchased things there, and are familiar with the process of buying, learn how to be an eBay seller. On eBay, you can sell anything. You will have to be able to take photos, write descriptions, and of course, pack and ship your product.

• Use Paypal. Before you even start thinking about getting fancy with credit cards, use Paypal. It costs nothing to set up, they take their money on the side. Paypal has to be linked to your bank account, and you do have a business account set up, don't you? If not, set one up at your bank specifically for this purpose.

• Allow your customers to contact you. If you are nervous about giving out an email address, get over it. You are in business. And it should be a real business email account, not a Yahoo one. When you got your web site, you probably got a dozen email addresses that you can use from the host. If you don't even have a web site yet, start there. If you want to reduce email spam, have your webmaster set up a PHP contact page like this.

If your website just has a picture, description and contact information, even a telephone number, people can at least buy your product. You can get fancy later.

If you would like to get personal on-site software training in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator or Dreamweaver in the greater Phoenix, Arizona area, please contact me. Paypal accepted, morning appointments only.