Opening an online shop has never been more affordable

Photo Credit: Wayhome Studio /
Photo Credit: Wayhome Studio /

Did you know that there are companies popping up every day with the single goal of helping you to start your own business? There are many with the primary goal of helping you in the process of starting and running a business. Below is a quick look at how much it may cost you to get the ball rolling with starting your business. Of course, the prices will vary depending on the type of products you are looking to sell, how much it costs to manufacture your products, and how much it costs to have your items shipped.

This is one of the most important aspects of your company. Why? It comprises the face and the look of your company. It is the first impression that your company has on a potential customer or audience. You can pay someone to create the branding for you. This means logos, colors, fonts, mastheads, packaging designs, and how your company is displayed on every medium you’re using. On the less expensive end, you can pay as low as $5 dollars to have someone create a logo for you, or you can pay up to several thousand to have a complete mockup created by a professional graphic designer. Now, since being as frugal as possible, or as some like to call it, lean, is ideal when first starting up, you can also try doing it completely by yourself with a little self-education on key concepts like how to find and buy fonts, creating a logo with a transparent background, using drop shadows and inner shadows, etc., or you can use a combination of hiring someone with a little DIY. For example, you can hire someone to create your logo, and depending on the graphic designer, it can run from 75 dollars to a few hundred dollars. Then, you can use that logo and insert it into the website/ store you create yourself. You can also create a label yourself and attach that logo to the label, or get creative in other ways that can save you some money.

For super cheap options on logo creation:
Fiverr – Just like the name, you’ll find many people willing to create a logo for you for as little as $5 dollars.
99designs – $129 dollars to have a professionally polished logo created for you out of over 62,000 templates within 24 hours (or $299 for something completely original).

Register a domain name for your Company
There are all types of websites nowadays that offer domain registration and website hosting. Domain registration is commonly referred to as the URL for your website. So which do you go with? It can get a bit confusing, and you may be tempted to go one of two ways: be as frugal as possible and go with the cheapest domain and hosting option (a lot of times buying a domain comes with some type of hosting along with it) or, take a higher end option to be on the safe side. When you are just starting out, buying only the domain is enough, however taking on even a minimal hosting package is something to keep in mind for the future just to make sure everything keeps running smoothly for your customers. Here are some options for domain registration along with current costs:

NameCheap ~$11.00/year
GoDaddy – $12.99/year
HostGator – $12.95/year

Online Vendors
When it comes to online vendors, there are so many options today! The great part is that it’s very affordable and cheaper than many of your bills. Once your products are ready to go, it’s simply a matter of choosing which venue you feel best goes with what you are trying to sell. Some have very large communities (e.g. Etsy, StoreEnvy) and some are what you make of it but offer you the ability to create a storefront and sell your products. Some are very customizable with themes that can be bought on other websites or created yourself if you’re tech savvy, and some have a standard look (most are customizable in some form). Here are some options that are good to have a look at and their current pricing structures:

Free. However, the payment options will charge 2.9 percent per transaction, whether it’s Stripe or Paypal. Also, if you use their marketplace, there’s a commission charge of 10%.
Twenty cents to list item for four months plus a 3.5 percent transaction fee for each sale.
Free for up to 5 products; $9.99 monthly for up to 25; $19.99 for up to 100; $29.99 for up to 300.
Five percent, plus 25-cent transaction fee for each sale.

Register your company name for a license
After you have chosen what type of company you are trying to open, it’s time to register it at your local Secretary of State. Often times, if it’s just you, and you are opening an online shop, most people go with registering the company as an LLC, however, you will definitely want to have a look at the different types of companies out there and choose which option is best for you. If you do decide to register as an LLC, the filing fee will cost anywhere from $100-$800 depending on the state. If your state has really high filing fees, you may want to look into registering in another state.

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