3 steps to start selling online NOW

February 5, 2016
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3 steps to start selling online NOW

Sell Online 101 – Part Two: How should I sell online on a marketplace?

Previously in this series, we talked about how you can decide where to sell products online – in your own store or on a marketplace. If you haven’t checked it, here is the link.

So you’ve decided to sell online. Whether you want to sell items online on Amazon, Flipkart, Paytm, or AskmeBazaar, what follows?

Here we’ve broken down the procedure, into an easy 3 step process you can follow to sell products online:

Step 1: Register your business:

Before selling items online, it is imperative that you begin by registering your business for online sales. There are several types of business registrations one can go for –

  • Sole proprietorship – This type of business registration is required when you are selling as an individual on the marketplace. It is the easiest type of business registration and is as such considered as an extension of the proprietor. An essential document is the PAN card, with which a bank account can be opened for the business.
  • Partnership company – When two or more people partner to start a company together. For a partnership company, a partnership deed is needed. On the basis of this deed, a bank account is opened and the company is registered.
  • LLP (Limited Liability partnership) – Business registration can also be carried out as an LLP. The key difference between an LLP and a partnership company is that an LLP is treated as a different legal entity.
  • Private Limited Company – This is the last type of business registration. A company of this category has its own identity – PAN card, VAT number, and Service Tax registrations (if applicable) are all in the name of the company.

All business registrations further need tax registrations:

  • TAN – TAN or Tax Deduction and Collection Number (TAN) is a mandatory 10 digit alpha number required for all businesses that are responsible for Tax Deduction at Source (TDS) or Tax Collection at Source (TCS). A TDS certificate is generally issued as proof of collection of tax. Find more about your TAN here.
  • VAT – VAT registration is required for any business that sells products or services. It is also known as the TIN (Tax Payer identification number) number and is a must while applying to sell online on any marketplace. Entities without the TIN can sell, but they would be restricted to the categories – books, handicrafts, online education or unstitched fabrics.
    Know more about TIN here.

Step 2: Register as a seller:

Once you have the documents mentioned above in place, you need to register yourself as a seller on the marketplace, before you can actually sell online. The details that are required via registration are:

  • Name
  • Contact details: Email address and phone number
  • Business address
  • Product category
  • Business registration documents:
    You would essentially need an id proof document and an address proof document to be provided at the time of seller registration. However, the permissible documents would change, depending on whether you register yourself as – sole proprietor, LLP/Partnership Company or a private limited company.
  • Tax registration documents:
    The marketplace will then need your tax and bank account details. These would be –

    • PAN card
    • TIN number
    • TAN
    • Bank account number
    • Bank account name
    • Bank IFSC code

Step 3: Listing your product:

Once you have registered in the marketplace, and the details provided by you have been verified, next you need to list your products online. This is important, as the product categories you choose and the details you provide is what draws your customers to you.
This can be done in two ways:

  • Listing one product at a time: This can be done manually, via the seller portal.
  • Listing in bulk: Most major marketplaces allow for volume product listings. Amazon, for instance, has in-built tools wherein spreadsheets containing all desired product information can be uploaded in one go.

Depending on the product category you choose, you will need to fill in details such as size, model, color, etc. Once you complete your process of registering and listing on the marketplace, you can now begin selling!

Next in this series: Sell Online 101 – Part Three

Any tips or questions for us? Leave them in the comments below.

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