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    3 Replies Latest reply on Nov 15, 2009 11:57 AM by visuals4u

    Starting up my very own Online Business for the first time.

    Hansmid Newbie

      Hello all!
      I am Hans i live in Miami, FL and i am truly motivated in starting up my very own online cigar store. I know lots about ciagrs,
      but i do not know much about actually opening up a online business. I figure that an online business will save me start up costs from a actual store location. I Honestly do not know where to begin and i am open to any tips and suggestions. What ia a projected cost i am looking at to start up? who should i speak to get things rolling with my business?
      What permits and or liscences do i need? i look forward to recieving all the knowledge and information anyone can provide.
        • Re: Starting up my very own Online Business for the first time.
          Tradebuilder Newbie

          Answer the following Questions before you start selling Online

          • How about buying Cigar within 20 Miles Radius of where I live. Will I find the Cigar that you want to sell online.
          • If the answer is yes, why should I buy from you online? Is it because you have a major Product differentiation in terms of Quality, Price, Brand etc.
          • If Yes, how often do you think people really like to change Brands therefore having a variety might make some appeal to your Customers
          • Are your Customers Web friendly or if you can really narrow down to the Age Group and then see if they would be computer Savy to look for Cigar on the Web
          • Are you Target Customers Geographically divided so much so that you need a Web Store
          • Do Customers that you target have an alternative today if they had to look online and buy
          • Do you have any idea of Cigar Sales in % that are sold online out of the Total Cigar Sold in the Geography which would have your target Customers
          • What is the Quantity and Value you are looking at if you think you eventually started selling online and does it look attractive business proposition
          • Is there any Legal issues in Delivering such products online. You may end up selling to children and therefore have legal issues.

          If you are able to answer all of this to your satisfaction, you may write to me to help you setup one. Thanks. Hope it helps.

          RJ
          • Re: Starting up my very own Online Business for the first time.
            Hymesdesign Adventurer
            Okay that list of questions is amazing, and I really think you should pay attention to it, however I have to point out that this is the internet, while it may not be easy, or replace your current job, enough hard work and virtually any product can find an audience...An online store is really not a big investment at all if you talk to people willing to help you out rather than people looking to profit off of your naivete. Point in case, two years back my mother, without consulting me, spent almost $7000 to start up an online candle company, the company she was going through charged enormous rates on every service, and pulled all "business side help" within three months of my mothers start date in their program...At roughly the same time, I started an online store for exactly $100, bear in mind I am a designer so those costs were negated, and within 30 days of startup I had my first sale...six months later I had to devote myself to helping my mother get out of the bind the disreputable guaranteed business left her in causing me to have to shut down my own moderately sucessful venture in the mean time...needless to say even deals that make sense and don't sound too good to be true can just be smarter scams...So basically if you want to open an online cigar shop then do so, but make sure you don't fall for one of these people that tell you it's nessecary to pay thousands to get started. Ramble done.
            • Re: Starting up my very own Online Business for the first time.
              visuals4u Adventurer
              Some of the costs you would incur would be:
              • Web hosting service ($5 - 20 per month)
              • Registered domain name ($8 - 20 per year)
              • Credit card processing service (PayPal or Google Checkout; expense depends on the number of transactions)
              • Cigar distributor (not familiar with the price of these products)
              • Packaging to ship your merchandise (can be purchased in bulk)

              You could not create a store under another company, such as eBay or Amazon, due to strict government regulations.

              In regard to licensing, every state has business license requirements. Check the website of the department of revenue in your area and look information on Business Licenses. Then, scroll for the type of business you are interested in starting - home business. There should be detailed information on costs, requirements, and the amount of time it takes to process. One website to check is http://www.business.gov/register/licenses-and-permits