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Setting Up an Online Store

Thinking about taking your business online? Setting up an online store for your small business can sound like a daunting task, but if you’re a brick-and-mortar business that only sells in person, you’re likely missing out on extra income.

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If you’re worried that you need to know how to code or have to hire an external designer to help you get started, we have good news. If you use Square at your brick-and-mortar shop, you’re already halfway to building a professional-looking online store. Square Online Store does the legwork for you in minutes, with no coding required. What’s more, it’s free to set up.

Here’s a quick, step-by-step guide for setting up a beautiful online store fast.

1. Gather your goods.

Decide what you want to sell online. With Square Online Store you can sell goods, tickets, and services–and even accept donations. The software imports all your business details–like the name, hours and location–into the system, so there’s no need to re-enter any of that information. Use the time that saves you to snap some photos of the items that you want to sell (or ask your suppliers if they have product shots you can use).

2. Choose a template and a web address.

Square has free, ready-to-go templates for attractive, professional e-commerce sites. Choose a theme you like and customize it with your own branding. If you already have a business website, you can keep your online store on that domain. And if you don’t, you can quickly set up a new domain free with Square.

3. Build your store and preview it.

This part is as easy as dragging and dropping those product images into the template and adding descriptions and prices. You can see how your site looks before you release it into the world by previewing it first and then making any last-minute changes you see fit.

4. Decide on a pickup or delivery method.

Square Online Store lets customers buy products for shipping (probably best for goods), electronic delivery (best for tickets), or in-store pickup (best for made-to-order items). You can easily choose the option that makes the most sense for your business–or an array of options (say, if you sell juice cleanses for shipping as well as made-to-order drinks for pickup).

5. Market your store.

Once you have everything up and running (congrats), it’s time to get it out to the right audience. Start by sending your customers an email letting them know about your new online store. Then create an email newsletter that keeps people up to date about what’s happening in-store and online.

6. Watch the sales flow in.

The great thing about Square Online Store software is that it syncs with your Square Dashboard. This lets you manage both your online store and your brick-and-mortar shop in one place. The system automatically reconciles in-store and online merchandise after you make sales, so you can make sure you never oversell an item. And having everything centralized streamlines your operations and helps you make sense of how all your business channels are performing.

Square Online Store is free to launch, and there are no monthly fees or hosting costs. All you pay is a 2.9% + $0.30 processing fee for each transaction. Get started today and watch those sales flow in.