Can You Make a Living Working From Home in E-commerce?

Are you longing to start your own business and wondering if it is really possible to make a living working from home in e-commerce? Do you dream of the day you can walk away from your regular job in favor of working from home?

Would you be more inclined to take the leap into e-commerce and working from home if you felt assured that you could earn a comfortable living?


• Many people want to work from home but are afraid of failure and financial ruin.

• If you want to be sure you can make a living working from home, you need to do the proper research and find out exactly what is involved. Never look before you leap because this is a blueprint for disaster.

• Before deciding whether you can earn a comfortable living from home with an e-commerce endeavor, decide exactly what sort of business you will have.

• The term “e-commerce” means “electronic commerce” and refers to sales of products or services conducted online.

• Choose the type of e-commerce business you believe you can operate successfully.

• Take the time to research your e-commerce idea. Look into it thoroughly and learn all you can about it.

• For example, if you want to sell e-readers online, look to see how these products are performing on sites such as eBay and Amazon.

• If you are in doubt about a product having sufficient demand to ensure plenty of traffic and sales, use the free Google Keyword Tool that will tell you how many global searches are performed for a certain item during a month. If there is a very low demand or number of searches, move on to another idea for a niche.

• Once you have decided on a niche, you will need to decide on a venue to sell your products. You might choose a big marketplace such as eBay or Amazon.

• Alternatively, you might prefer to start your own website. You can also use a turnkey site such as ProStores that allows you to start your own e-commerce store very quickly.

• Now, source your e-commerce products. This is possibly the most important step in the process of starting an online business as far as success or failure.

• You must be able to get your e-commerce products for resale at wholesale prices. If not, you will not have an ample margin of profit and will not be able to keep your home business afloat.

• Check a product supplier’s prices against the average retail market prices and you can see whether you can make enough profit on your sales,.

• Now that you have all your ducks in a row, you must allocate a space within your home for your home office.

• This is a big deal because your livelihood depends on your ability to work there. If you can’t have a separate room for your home office, that is OK, but make sure to choose a corner or space that will afford you enough quiet to focus and work.

• Choose a comfortable office chair and work desk. Have plenty of light. Use shelves or storage cubes to stay organized.

• Plan your work and work your plan. One of the main reasons e-commerce entrepreneurs fail is because they go into the venture willy-nilly, with no clear business plan. This is a mistake.

• A home business is still a business, and like any other, it needs a well-defined and thought-out plan of operation.

• Sit down and lay out your business plan. Include things such as your projected sales, the number of sales you need to make to meet your financial goals, your goals for one year from now and even five years down the track.

• Create a roadmap to success. If you don’t know where you’re going, you won’t have any idea how to get there.

• Treat your e-commerce home business like a real job because it is. Even though working for yourself and being your own boss is vastly preferable to working for somebody else at a regular job, never lose sight of the fact that it is still a job.

• You must be willing to roll up your shirtsleeves and work. Put in the hours and the effort necessary to drive traffic and generate sales.

• Have realistic expectations of your e-commerce business. Don’t expect it to run itself or to make pots full of money for you with no sweat-equity invested.

• Working from home is fabulous, but there are traps for the unwary that can spell disaster for your e-commerce business. Family and friends must be educated about your working time and learn not to encroach upon it or interrupt you for frivolous reasons.

• You must be a stern taskmaster for yourself at times of temptation, resisting the urge to get tied up on a personal phone call or to couch out and watch television during the time you need to be working.

• You must be able to manage your time wisely. Draw up a schedule and for the most part, stick to it.

• If you want to be as successful as possible and make a good living from home in e-commerce, be sure to take advantage of all of the legitimate tax exemptions you can claim. Your office space, a portion of your utility bill, your business expenses such as eBay or Amazon fees, the cost of your products to sell, packaging and shipping expenses, storage space, your office equipment and furniture, even your vehicle if you drive to pick up the products you buy to sell online, health insurance and retirement plans…all of these and more are tax breaks you are entitled to if you have a home business in e-commerce.

The Bottom Line:

There are thousands of people making a living from home with an e-commerce business. You can, too, if you are willing to follow the recommended steps to success.

Always prepare thoroughly for any e-commerce endeavor before jumping in the deep end and you will be more likely to succeed.

Treat your home business as a job and a business instead of some sort of hobby and you will multiply your chances of success in e-commerce.