Expert tips to build and grow your online business

Feb 14 2022 | PayPal Editorial Staff

Building an online business can be exciting, but overwhelming.
Ecommerce marketplaces offer valuable opportunities to reach millions of new customers across the globe, gather important data, and provide discounts and promotions at scale. Yet competition is also fierce among online merchants and customer expectations are higher than ever.

That's why it's important to have actionable insights to break through the noise and foster small business growth. To help, we've compiled two checklists of expert tips to build and grow your online business.

Checklist for starting your online business
Checklist for reaching new online customers

Here are five pro tips from the experts to get you started with online business.

1. Tap partner resources to get started.
"PayPal has continuously gone above and beyond for us and lots of other small businesses. Not only have we received a lot of useful data from the innovative tools PayPal have built, but we have also been able to grow our international sales a lot quicker thanks to its services. PayPal translated our pages for non-English speakers, took care of the currency conversions and gave us access to advanced business loans and capital. Most amazingly, PayPal picked up on charity work we did during the pandemic and shared us on their social platforms."
— Keval Dattani, Founder and CEO, Mo Bro's Grooming Company

2. Monitor and optimize your site for SEO.
"One of the biggest misconceptions people have is that all you need for online selling is just a website. It is far from that. Anyone can build a website. Getting found and retaining customers is a whole other animal. It's a lot of work. Google algorithms change every day. You have to have the right people in place watching and tweaking in order for those searches and ads to reach the right audiences and to convert those customers."
— Gina Ozhuthual, Founder and CEO, Bohemian Mama

3. Know where your customers are.
"You don't need to sell everywhere. If you're selling custom machined parts for farmers, you probably don't need to be selling on Instagram."
— Tim Osborn, Associate Creative Director, Ecwid

4. Have a plan to communicate and engage with customers.
"If you are upfront to your customers when you make a mistake – and you will make mistakes – then that pretty much closes the door on the idea of you being dishonest. By constantly sticking with this, we have noticed that more often than not our customers will come to bat for us before we even need to touch the keyboard."
— Jason Lively, President, The Glitter Guy, Inc.

5. Don't sweat a lack of IT skills.
"Setting up for launch without technical skills was straightforward for us. Being able to plug into PayPal within a few clicks meant we could take card payments quickly. When we did get stuck, we could find readily available solutions online, which was as simple as following on-screen instructions through a step-by-step process. The biggest challenge was fearing the unknown – human nature! But we did it all ourselves and it was the best decision we made, as we got to learn the processes involved in setting up online."
— Keval Dattani, Founder and CEO, Mo Bro's Grooming Company

Ready to learn more? Download our checklists for reaching new ecommerce customers and growing your business online.  

The content of this article is provided for informational purposes only. You should always obtain independent business, tax, financial, and legal advice before making any business decision.

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