How to Start an Online Pet Store in 2023

5/10/2023

How to Start an Online Pet Store in 2023

The pet parenting trend continues to rise. Pet owners love to pamper their pets like no less than their own kids. Not to mention the increasing acceptance of online shopping platforms among the global population.

Numberwise, the global pet care industry, valued at USD 25.94 Billion in 2020, is pegged to reach USD 54.95 Billion at a CAGR of 11.3% from 2020 to 2027. No surprise, there's a sizable space for entrepreneurs looking to penetrate pet-related eCommerce businesses. 

While setting up an online pet store might feel like walking through glue, relevant knowledge and proper tools will help you get a head start and make things a lot easier. 

If you want to launch your eCommerce store in the promising niche of pet care, then we’ve rounded up an easy-to-understand guide for you. 

1. Choose the Category of Products or Services

The versatility of pet businesses will make your head spin. Thus, before taking the plunge, you better zero in on a niche that is large enough to support sustainable cash flow yet allows you to brand yourself as a distinctive store. In fact, specialising in a specific kind of product can help you build a go-to brand for pet owners.

headsupfortails-store

Here are some pet store products and services to draw inspiration from:

  • Basic pet supplies include accessories, toys, food bowls, litter boxes, cages, etc.
  • Custom apparels
  • Pet food and treats
  • Pet grooming products 
  • Pet sitting
  • Dog Walking
  • Pet training

So, how do you settle on an eCommerce niche for your online pet store? 

  • Check out your potential competition using the marketing and SEO tools like Ahrefs or SEMrush to look closely into the challenges you might face to gain market share for different niches. 
  • Dig in keyword research data to search narrower keywords that are fairly competitive but have high search volume.
  • Head to Amazon’s Best Seller Section to learn more about what sort of pet supplies products are popular among shoppers.

amazon-best-seller-pet-category

 

  • Google search to extract sub-niche ideas by entering niche keywords.
  • Find what pain points pet owners might have and see if your potential niche can offer solutions to them.
  • Leverage Statisa’s analytical reports to look for what sort of products are popular or have a large customer base.

statista-data-on-pet-food

  • Define your USP—an intersection between your passion, strength, and market demand. For example: Dog food products made with organic and research-backed formulas with a massive market demand. 

2. Select Suppliers

Once you’ve defined a niche for your online pet store, you need to determine the types of products and the suppliers to source those products.

There are three main supply routes that you can take:

  • Search for your own manufacturers who are willing to produce and supply your products.
  • Rope in a wholesaler or supplier who purchases existing products that you can resell on your site.
  • Dropshipping model wherein a third-party company manages your order fulfilment, storage and shipping needs. It works best for entrepreneurs who want to launch their online pet store without the upfront investment in a large warehouse facility or inventory.

dropshipping-process

You can find suppliers on platforms such as AliExpress, Oberlo, and Doba. There are also online directories like SaleHoo, Worldwide Brands, and Wholesale Central, which list suppliers from across the globe.

It’s always best to work with reliable suppliers who offer wholesale rates and maintain a consistent supply of products. 

P.S. Irrespective of what you will be selling, you will want to do your research for any regulation required to keep your business compliant all the time. Also, it’s equally important to obtain relevant licences as per the laws in your country or state. 

3. Know Which Platform to Launch On

The next step is to ask yourself a crucial question—where do I want to sell my pet supplies?

Because the digital landscape is vast, offering several options to set up and grow your online pet store. While all have their own pros and cons, a combination of them often works well. 

Here are some popular platforms:

  • Social media channels such as Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Pinterest, and WhatsApp. They also pose the opportunity to build a loyal community of pet lovers.
  • Showcase your brand as product listings on the popular marketplace like Amazon, eBay, or Alibaba.com. It’s simple, cheap, and has the broadest possible reach. Nonetheless, because of the fierce competition, it’s a challenging task to stand out from the crowd. 
  • Build your own eCommerce website or app. While it may sound harder than listing on marketplaces, building eye-catching websites doesn’t really involve coding expertise or a huge budget. 
  • Alternatively, you may build and customise your online pet store using eCommerce website builders such as Shopify, Square Shape, WooCommerce, and Magento.

popular-commercial-platforms

popular-commercial-platform

4. Set up the Online Pet Store

While marketplaces and social media totally work, the fact remains that you do not own them. That is why your online pet store needs a website of its own. 

As mentioned earlier, open-source eCommerce platforms are a great way to build an appealing web store for pet products. Though it is absolutely possible to create and launch a website all by yourself, you might also hire a professional developer if the budget permits. 

5. Market Your Brand

Getting the word out about your online pet store requires you to jump through quite a few hoops. While it's easy to gloss over, effective marketing will make all the difference in getting the buzz going and growing your business.

petzone-twitter

We suggest following eCommerce marketing strategies to get real results.  

  • Paid search marketing
  • SEO
  • Content marketing
  • Email marketing
  • Social media marketing

6. Process and Ship Your Orders

Once you go live and start selling, you must have accurate, fast, and cost-efficient courier and shipping methods in place. Appropriate packaging can significantly optimise your shipping options and save your customers money, for instance – master cases for fast-moving pet supplies, kitting for smaller products, etc.

Depending on your order's size and time sensitivity, you can avail of various domestic and overseas shipping and delivery services from third-party logistic solution providers – Standard shipping, Pallet delivery, and Express shipping, to name a few.

The Right Partner: Do You Need Ecommerce Order Fulfilment Solutions?

Appropriate packaging and timely delivery translate into increased sales and repeat business. Plus, scaling an online pet store without investing heavily in additional resources might be a tall order for you.

Thus, it makes sense to invest in third-party logistic services offering cohesive storage, inventory management, and order fulfilment solutions in one comprehensive package.

At PACK & SEND, we offer innovative inventory, packing, freight and shipping solutions for your online pet store so that you can exceed customer expectations without conceding to reduced profits.

Get in touch with us to equip your eCommerce pet business for unhindered expansion.

Post by Topic