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5 steps to build an ecommerce business model

What is an Ecommerce Business Model?

An ecommerce business model is a way to generate revenue from online sales. It can involve selling products and services directly to consumers, or providing these products and services as part of a subscription service. In either case, the goal is for the ecommerce business to earn a profit by charging customers for its goods and services.

Ecommerce Business Model

Why Should Your Online Store Have a Business Model?

A business model is important for two reasons. First, it determines how much money your store will make. Second, it affects the way you spend your time and resources developing your online store.

If you want to make a lot of money from your online store, you need to find a business model that generates significant revenue. There are many different types of ecommerce models available, but some of the most common include selling products and services directly. Here are a few points to note while making an ecommerce business model.

1. Have an in-depth understanding of your business.

In order to create the right business model for your online store, you need to first understand what it is and why people would want to buy from it. This requires hard analysis of your market, customer base and competition.

Your business model will also influence how much you charge for products and services. Be sure to consider whether high prices are a good strategy for generating revenue in your niche market

2. Pinpoint resources needed to operate your business.

You also need to decide which resources you will need to operate your online store effectively. This includes things like web hosting and domain name registration, as well as marketing tools such as an email list or social media presence.

3. Build a revenue plan for the future.

You also need to create a plan for how you will grow your business over the long term. This includes identifying potential strategic partnerships and product lines that could further drive revenue growth.

4. Understand what your competitors are doing.

Finally, it is important to understand what your competitors are doing and how they are marketing their products. This will help you identify areas where you can improve upon your own online store strategy.

5. Spot opportunities.

Keep an eye out for any potential opportunities that could improve your business model. This may include new product lines, marketing campaigns or partnerships that could enhance your overall profitability.

Who Needs an Ecommerce Business Model?

Anyone operating an ecommerce business needs to have a business plan in place. This includes any individual or company that is investing time, money or resources into their online presence.

Why Is a Business Model Necessary?

A business model is essential for any ecommerce business because it provides investors, customers and team members with assurances about the viability of your venture. A well-executed business model can also help you secure loans, attract new employees and more.

What Should Be the key elements in a Business Model?

A business model should include the following key elements:

1. Mission statement: This describes your online store's overall purpose, including what it is meant to accomplish and who its target audience is.

2. Market analysis: This section identifies your market segmentation, demographic information and buying behavior patterns.

3. Competitor analysis: It looks at how your competitors and similar businesses are currently marketing their products and how this might affect your online store.

4. Revenue forecasts: This section outlines your expectations for annual sales, income and expenses (both direct and indirect) over the course of the business plan period.

5. Financial analysis: This section details how you will fund your stated objectives, including assumptions about cash flow, debt levels and other financial variables.

Getting Started With Your Ecommerce Business Model

The best way to develop a ecommerce business model is to start with an overview of your company and its goals. Once you have a good understanding of what you want your online store to achieve, it's time to begin outlining the overall strategy. Use market research and analysis as guidelines for developing your plans and keep in mind that changes in industry trends can rapidly impact how successful ecommerce businesses operate. Finally, make sure that all financial projections are realistic based on historical data and current market conditions.

Getting started with your ecommerce business

1. What are you selling?

Start by thinking about what you would buy if you were shopping online. This will help identify your product niche and the types of customers that are likely to be interested in what you have to offer.

2. What is your company's competitive advantage?

Be sure to focus on highlighting any unique selling propositions (USPs) or advantages that set your business apart from its competitors. This can include features, pricing, delivery times or customer service support.

3. Who is your target customer?

Next, identify the demographic groups that are most likely to be interested in what you have to offer. Consider age, income level, location and lifestyle preferences. This information will help you focus your marketing efforts and create content that is specifically tailored to these audiences.

4. What do your customers want?

Once you know who your target customer is, it's important to understand what they want from online shopping experience. In particular, consider how they would like to be approached and what types of content would appeal to them.

5. What are your product propositions?

Now it's time to lay out all of the different products and services that you offer. Make sure that each one has a clear USP, price point and delivery time so potential customers can make an informed buying decision.

6. How do you plan on reaching your target market?

This is where things can get a little icky. You'll need to come up with a plan for reaching your target market, including paid and organic marketing campaigns as well as social media engagement.

7. What are the costs associated with starting and running your business?

Finally, be sure to factor in the costs of setting up your business (includes hardware, software, web hosting), hiring employees (staffing expenses) and marketing activities (print advertising fees, online ads).

10 Parts of an Ecommerce Business Model

There are several important steps that you need to take before launching your ecommerce business. Here are the seven essential components:

1. Identity and branding

Your first step is to create a strong identity for your business. This can be done through developing a logo, creating informative content and designing an attractive website. You'll also need to think about how you'll differentiate yourself from other businesses in your niche market.

2. Competitive analysis

Before launching your business, it's important to do some competitive research. This will help you identify the key areas in which you need to improve if you want to achieve success.

3. Crowdfunding and Partnering

In order not to hit financial barriers right from the start, many ecommerce businesses turn to crowdfunding platforms or partnerships with other businesses as a way of securing initial funding. Additionally, these strategies can help spread awareness about your product and build trust

4. Business Model

Once you've determined your goals and developed a strong marketing strategy, it's important to create a sound business model that will enable you to generate consistent profits. There are many different models that businesses can use, so make sure to research each one carefully before settling on the option that is right for you

5. Ecommerce Platform and Ecommerce software

If you plan on selling products online, then it's crucial to select the right ecommerce platform. There are a variety of options available, so it's important to comparison shop before making any decisions

6. Inventory Management

One of the most challenging aspects of running an ecommerce business is ensuring that you have enough stock on hand to meet customer demand. This involves managing your inventory carefully and ensuring that you're always in compliance with local laws and regulations

7. Social Media Marketing

Social media platforms are an essential part of any online marketing strategy, and businesses that don't take advantage of them risk falling behind their competitors. Make sure to set up a social media account, establish effective content strategies, and keep monitoring your results regularly

8. Website Design and Development

A well-designed website is key to attracting customers and generating leads. If you're not familiar with the ins and outs of website design, it's worth considering outsourcing the designing to a professional agency.

9. Shipping and Fulfillment

Shipping and fulfillment can be a major headache for businesses, but it's important to get it right if you want to succeed online. Make sure to research the various options available before making any decisions

10. Ecommerce Marketing Analytics

If you want to know how your ecommerce business is performing, it's important to have a solid understanding of marketing analytics. This involves tracking key metrics such as website traffic and conversion rates.

Market Analysis

The ecommerce market is growing rapidly, and there are a variety of opportunities available to entrepreneurs who want to start their own business.

Market analysis of ecommerce business

1. Competition

There are a number of competitive advantages that businesses with an online presence can enjoy. These include the ability to reach more people through various channels, as well as greater exposure for your products and services.

2. Location

One of the most important factors when it comes to starting an e commerce business is where you start it. Different regions have different market opportunities, and it's important to research which areas are most promising before making any decisions.

3. Business Structure

There are a variety of different business structures that can be used for ecommerce ventures. These include sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, and LLCs. It's important to decide on the structure that best suits your needs before launching your business online

4. Ecommerce Marketing Strategy

A good ecommerce marketing strategy should be designed to reach specific target audiences. This involves understanding the needs and wants of your customers, as well as targeting the right media channels.

5. Product Development

One of the most important aspects of running an successful ecommerce business is developing quality products that appeal to consumers. This involves taking into account user feedback when designing new products, as well as continuously improving existing ones.

There are many considerations that need to be made when starting an ecommerce business model. However, with the right strategies in place, entrepreneurs can successfully launch their own online businesses.

Methods of Marketing

1. Paid marketing

-Google Ads: Used to target interest areas, demographics, and search terms

-Facebook Ads: Used to reach a wider audience through targeted ads

-Twitter Advertising: Used to attract attention from potential customers who are following relevant accounts

-LinkedIn Ads: Used to target professionals and business owners

- Google Adsense: Used to generate income through displaying ads on websites

Operating Costs

● Web Hosting and Domain Registration: $8/month for a basic hosting plan with no ads, or $10/month for a more advanced hosting plan with ad support ● Ecommerce Platforms (Shopify, Wix, BigCommerce): This will vary depending on the platform.

2. Organic marketing

Organic marketing channels include content creation, social media outreach, and email marketing. These channels can be used to build relationships with potential customers and promote your products.

Content Marketing: Content marketing is a strategy used to create and distribute informational articles about your business. This can be done through blogs, social media posts, or email newsletters.

Social Media Outreach: Social media outreach involves using platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook to connect with potential customers. This can be done in an effort to build relationships and promote your brands.

Email Marketing: Email marketing is an effective way to reach and speak to potential customers. Emails can be sent out regularly (weekly, for example) with promotional content about your products or services.

Logistics and Operations Plan

Ecommerce has turned into a significant part of the retail market and is continuing to grow at a steady pace. To drive your business forward, it is important to have a solid logistics and operations plan in place. The plan should contain everything you need to know about your supply chain, business processes, inventory management, customer service, warehouse management, and order fulfillment.

Logistics Management is the process of coordinating the activities and resources required to move an organization's products, services or information from a point of origin to a point of consumption.

Logistics management is a part of supply chain management that plans, implements, and controls the efficient, effective forward and backward movement and storage of goods, services, and related data between the source of origin and the source of consumption.

Logistics can play an important role during periods of energy shortages.

The increasing use of complex product lines has led to increased scrutiny of marketing considerations in product line decisions rather than logistics considerations only.

Increased emphasis on effective inventory management has led to increased pressures on managers to achieve wide swings in business cycles with varying rates of increase in labor costs, fluctuating interest costs, and changing rates of sale

Logistics management is the process of organizing and directing the flow of materials and products to meet customer requirement.

Logistics managers are responsible for ensuring that products reach their destinations on time, in the correct condition, and at an affordable cost.

There are three primary areas of responsibility for a logistics manager: operations, distribution, and supply chain management.

Operations encompass activities such as scheduling deliveries, managing inventory levels, and resolving customer complaints.

Distribution focuses on getting products to customers by coordinating with suppliers and shipping companies. It also includes setting up delivery routes and determining which suppliers or carriers should be used to deliver products to customers.

Supply chain management determines how products are acquired (by buying or producing them), processed (by shipping, warehousing, or stocking them), and delivered to clients.

A logistics manager must have a strong knowledge of business operations and an understanding of the supply chain in order to optimize it for the company's needs.

Financial Plan for an Ecommerce Business Model

While there are several ecommerce business models, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of the different options available before selecting a model that works for you and allows you to generate enough revenue and profit to give you financial freedom and independence.

Your experience with online marketing, online business and general business know-how will help you make the right decision for your next big ecommerce business model.

1. Income statement

The income statement (also called the profit and loss statement) is a financial report that summarizes how much money a company earned or lost during a certain period of time, such as a month or a year. It also identifies where revenue came from, which expenses were incurred, and ultimately shows whether a company was profitable or not.

2. Balance sheet

Ecommerce businesses vary in terms of product and service mix, number of employees and owner, quality of operations and degree of automation. They differ from one another also by their sources of financing - cash and debt – including debt arrangements with investors or lenders.

Balance sheets for ecommerce companies also vary depending on the sources of financing, but if you know the basics of accounting and financial statements, you can easily understand what all is needed in a balance sheet and how they are used by accounting persons.

3. Cash-flow statement

There are many things to consider when it comes to a business's financial planning. One of the most important aspects is cash flow management, which will determine how much money can be spent on a daily basis.

Many ecommerce businesses have a slower cash flow due to the long paybacks of various types of investments, including online advertising, website design and development costs, inventory financing costs etc.


With globalization and rapid urbanization, the ecommerce industry has managed to leave a strong impact on several markets around the world. In India, the ecommerce landscape is still evolving as companies strive to increase their share of the market and find innovative ways to integrate payments across multiple platforms. Understanding the ecommerce business model in India should help businesses gain insight into how to adapt and improve their current business strategies.

India is one of the largest market for ecommerce globally with a considerable level of growth projected for the coming years. India’s spends of the second quarter of 2021 across the most popular ecommerce apps stood at Rs.450 crore. India’s ecommerce industry is set to grow by 84% to 8300 crores by 2024.

So, grab this opportunity, build a successful ecommerce business model and get selling online.

Here are some links where you can get more statistical information on the ecommerce business model.

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