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New online business - need mentor?

edited 30 November -1 at 12:00AM in Small Biz & Charities' MoneySaving
31 replies 3.5K views
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  • soolin wrote: »
    Without tracking any payment method that buyers are likely to want to use will not be safe for you. PayPal for instance will need tracking to the address given on the PayPal invoice if buyer claims item was not received. Not only is tracking needed it must be viewable online in a simple format .

    Thanks. I need to rethink the payment aspect it seems!
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  • Savvy_SueSavvy_Sue Forumite
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    It is not a Tesco type shop I am setting up. It is gift bundles: romantic package, new mothers, new babies, boarding school packages. Nobody is offering this at the moment.
    I suspect that all of these are easily available for purchase and delivery within the UK. If those companies aren't offering what you are offering, I'd wonder why. And I suspect it will boil down to the payment issues.
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  • Mistral001Mistral001 Forumite
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    Savvy_Sue wrote: »
    I suspect that all of these are easily available for purchase and delivery within the UK. If those companies aren't offering what you are offering, I'd wonder why. And I suspect it will boil down to the payment issues.

    I tend to a agree. The OP should perhaps do research on how to order and pay for gift packages sent from the usual gift outlets. They probably all do it. Christmas hampers come to mind.
  • seatbeltnoobseatbeltnoob Forumite
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    It is not a Tesco type shop I am setting up. It is gift bundles: romantic package, new mothers, new babies, boarding school packages. Nobody is offering this at the moment.
    So they're experiences? That would make credit card scams unlikely than physical items that can be sold on easily like electronics.
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    Savvy_Sue wrote: »
    I suspect that all of these are easily available for purchase and delivery within the UK. If those companies aren't offering what you are offering, I'd wonder why. And I suspect it will boil down to the payment issues.

    This is cross border though so people in the U.K. And US for instance will be able to buy goods in the country wher OP resides and have them sent locally to the OP. Like you I've seen this the other way, where people buy gifts for relatives and friends overseas and have them sent to remind them of home. I'm not sure why local people would want local items but the OP does say she has done her research so hopefully there is a market.
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  • martindowmartindow Forumite
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    Low cost and high margin. What adds value to the products is the time taken to package them nicely. Customers can also write a note/card which will be personalised and included.
    In any business you need to have a good margin because it has to cover all of the running costs and hopefully provide some profit.

    I think your OP raised some alarm bells as your questions suggest that you are not aware of many of these costs. Assuming you are correct that there is a gap in the market, you can't know if there is a profitable business until you know all of the expenses.
  • Thank you all. I spoke with the web designer and he can include 1, 2 and 4 at a fee. I am so happy :-).
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  • martindow wrote: »
    In any business you need to have a good margin because it has to cover all of the running costs and hopefully provide some profit.

    I think your OP raised some alarm bells as your questions suggest that you are not aware of many of these costs. Assuming you are correct that there is a gap in the market, you can't know if there is a profitable business until you know all of the expenses.

    No I don't know all the costs hence my questions.
    QUIDCO £2827 paid out since October 2007:D
  • Mistral001Mistral001 Forumite
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    The problem of getting advice on this forum is that few people have any experience of actually ordering something from abroad and getting it delivered to a UK address.

    A day in any foreign country might help the OP to find out how the online business would work from the customer's point of view. By ordering small value goods from various stores in the UK and UK-based websites and having them delivered to the OP's address in the UK from say Berlin might prove every educational. Return flights can be obtained for only a few tens of pounds. You might never have to leave the airport so the whole day might take less than £100 including meals, and travel to and from the airport in the UK.
  • Mistral001 wrote: »
    The problem of getting advice on this forum is that few people have any experience of actually ordering something from abroad and getting it delivered to a UK address.

    A day in any foreign country might help the OP to find out how the online business would work from the customer's point of view. By ordering small value goods from various stores in the UK and UK-based websites and having them delivered to the OP's address in the UK from say Berlin might prove every educational. Return flights can be obtained for only a few tens of pounds. You might never have to leave the airport so the whole day might take less than £100 including meals, and travel to and from the airport in the UK.

    I see what you mean. I lived in the UK for decades and just moved to West Africa, where the deliveries will be made. I am doing more research about payment gateways/merchant accounts and delivery couriers etc here. I just found a courier that does online tracking so it is all going well so far. Thank you!
    QUIDCO £2827 paid out since October 2007:D
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