Nov 17, 2022 5:21:13 AM | Where Do I Start? Start an Online Business in Canada in 7 Steps: A Definitive Guide

Learn how to start an online business in Canada today! And if you're looking for some inspo, check out our 21 online business ideas.

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If you’re looking to start an online business in Canada, you’ve come to the right place. 

You might not have a clue where to begin or worry that you don’t have a fantastic product to sell yet. Don’t worry! We’re here to help you out. In this guide, you’ll find 21 online business ideas, plus a comprehensive guide on how to start an online business in Canada.

21 ideas to start an online business in Canada

Time to find a great online business idea! To help you in your quest, we’ve made a list of 21 business ideas popular in Canada right now so you can start making money online.

1. Open an online store

Our first idea to start an online business in Canada is one you might have thought of already: launching an online store. What you’ll sell online depends mainly on your interests and skills because the possibilities are limitless. Check out some great ideas for people who are just starting out in the online business world:

  • Clothes. To open your clothing store, you can buy clothes from a supplier or start your clothing line.
  • Jewelry. There are many niches you can invest in, from fine jewelry to fashion pieces. If you’re crafty, you can make your own jewelry, but you can also hire a supplier for your online business.
  • Pet store. Clothes, toys, treats, you name it; there’s a market for every kind of pet product. And if taking care of pets is your calling, you can also provide grooming, pet sitting or training services.
  • Home and decor. Ever since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, people have become increasingly invested in creating a cozy environment at home. In this niche, there are plenty of options to choose from, such as furniture, pottery, posters, and kitchen utensils.
  • Plants. The same logic from the previous item applies here; after all, plants can help brighten up a room. If you have a green thumb, consider transforming this talent into a lucrative online business.
  • Beauty care. Another option is creating your cosmetics store. You can design your own products (such as lip balms and moisturizers) or use the dropshipping business model and sell them with the help of a third-party supplier.

Photo shows a laptop on a table, surrounded by a coffee mug, a phone and a notepad. On the laptop screen, there is a sample online store. This is an example of how to start an online business in Canada.

If you decide to move forward with your online store, make sure to choose the best ecommerce platform for your business. Shoplazza, for instance, is ideal for small business owners who don’t have an IT  team to help them out. As a Shoplazza merchant, you can easily customize your store – no coding required.

💡A quick tip. Don’t know where to begin? Here’s our guide to help you launch an online store with Shoplazza.

2. Start a dropshipping business

You might not have an idea for a new product, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start an online business in Canada. Dropshipping is a business model in which you select products from a supplier and sell them in your online store or an online marketplace.

If you’re envisioning running your own online business from the comfort of your home, then dropshipping might be the right choice for you.

With dropshipping, you don’t have to worry about keeping stock or shipping orders to your customer because the supplier is in charge of inventory and order fulfillment. All you have to do is focus on marketing and customer service, while the third-party supplier takes care of everything else.

While selling on marketplaces is a good place to start and requires little upfront investment, competing against many sellers who offer similar products on the same platform might be challenging. In order to stand out from the crowd, you should consider building a brand and launching your online store.

Shoplazza, for instance, is one of the best ecommerce platforms for dropshipping because it allows you to easily connect your online store to the best dropshipping services in the market. As a Shoplazza merchant, you’ll have access to dozens of themes which allow you to design your store in a way that highlights your brand identity – and you don’t need to know any coding for that.

3. Sell second-hand products online

Photo illustrates blog post on starting an online business in Canada by selling second-hand products. In the photo, there is a person with long blond hair in a used record store, surrounded by shelves with records on display. The person is holding an Elvis Presley record.

Dropshipping may not be your thing, but that’s not your only option to start an online business in Canada.

Do you happen to have some clothes that you don’t wear anymore? Or books that you’re never going to read? Any collectable items just lying around at home and gathering dust? If you said yes to any of those questions, you should consider selling second-hand products.

And why stop there? You don’t have to only sell items you already own. Another option is going treasure hunting: you can hit up all the thrift stores in your area and search for relics that can be flipped for profit.

When you work with second-hand products, you have the advantage of selling something unique or hard to find for a healthy profit margin.

As a curator for vintage or second-hand products, you can sell your finds on social media and marketplaces, or even create an online store.

4. Work as a freelance writer or translator

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It’s never been easier to make money off your writing skills. Thanks to technology, you can start an online business in Canada by offering your services as a writer or translator to clients located anywhere in the world.

A good thing about working as a freelance writer or translator is that you don’t have to quit your day job right away. Instead, you can begin by picking a client here and there until you feel confident enough to turn this side hustle into a primary source of income.

Freelancing platforms like Fiverr and Upwork are good places to find your first projects and build your portfolio. Once you gain more experience, consider creating your own website to showcase your services, attract more high-paying clients and turn it into an even more profitable online business.

5. Sell handmade products

Photo for blog post on starting an online business in canada by selling handmade products shows several decorated Easter eggs from up close. Each egg has a different pattern and carries different colours, and the eggs were all painted by hand.

Artisanal items are often associated with quality and uniqueness, which could be used to your advantage if you start an online business in Canada to sell handmade products. Whether you develop skills you already have or learn to make something from scratch, you have an excellent opportunity to make money with your bare hands, literally.

Check out a few handmade product ideas:

  • Bath and beauty products, such as artisanal soap, bath bombs and lip balms. 
  • Jewelry, either luxury or fashion jewelry.
  • Home decor items, which include magnets, candles, planters, picture frames and sculptures.
  • Woodworking products, from kitchen utensils to furniture.
  • Food and drinks, such as tea bags, chocolate and even pet treats.

Etsy is a go-to website for handmade items in Canada, so you might consider selling your products there to start. But if you intend to scale your business in the future, consider launching your online store, which will allow you to promote your brand from the beginning and give you more control over your business.

6. Write and sell your books

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You don’t need a deal with a major publishing company to become an author. Nowadays, there are numerous resources out there for people who want to self-publish their work.

 Not sure what you can write about? Well, the answer is anything. If you have a knack for creative writing, you can make money off of your short stories, poems and novels. And if there’s a field you excel in or are really passionate about, whether it’s marketing, crochet or astrology, consider writing guides to share everything you know with your readers.

Kindle Direct Publishing, for instance, allows you to self-publish both ebooks and printed copies. Once your book is ready, you get to sell it on Amazon. How cool is that?

It’s worth mentioning that, while Amazon offers you a space to sell your books, all the marketing is up to you. And because the competition can be fierce, you might want to create an author website to help you build and manage your reputation as well as promote your work.

7. Offer online courses

Here’s another incredible option for those who want to start an online business in Canada and are looking for a source of passive income. While you might need to put in considerable effort before making your first dollar, selling online courses requires a low financial investment. Besides, once your lessons are ready and available on your website, you’ll have to do very little to maintain the business.

Whether you’re good at doing your nails, putting together furniture or customizing notebooks, you’re bound to find people willing to learn from you.

Selling recorded webinars and self-paced courses is a good way to keep money coming in because people can enroll at any time, regardless of your availability.

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If you think online courses are right for you, here’s a quick step-by-step guide to follow:

  1. Choose the topic you want to teach. List everything you’re good at or know a lot about. If you have trouble coming up with ideas, ask friends and coworkers what they think you’re good at. That might give you insight into skills you have that others would love to learn from you.
  2. Prepare your course. First, outline all the topics you should cover. Then, write a script and develop supporting materials if necessary (slide presentations, workbooks, etc.).
  3. Get the tools you need. Are you going to record your screen while you teach the course? Then you’ll need screen-recording software. Some of those resources even have built-in tools to help you edit your video. Also, ensure you have a high-quality microphone and a camera; the more professional your course looks, the easier it is to sell.
  4. Host your online course. You can either host your course on platforms such as Udemy and Skillshare or upload them to your own website.

8. Sell on an online marketplace

When you first thought of starting an online business in Canada, there’s a high chance you considered selling products on Amazon or eBay.

Marketplaces tend to be a viable option for first-time entrepreneurs because they are low-risk, affordable investments. Besides, selling on those platforms comes with the benefit of being able to tap into their broad customer base and solid reputation. A lot of consumers go straight to marketplaces when looking for a product and don’t mind buying it from a seller who’s new to the business.

Once you reach a steady conversion rate, it may be a good idea to build your brand and open an online store, which will give you the flexibility and scalability for your business to grow.

9. Start a blog

You’re wrong if you think blogging is a thing of the past. Thanks to Google and other search engines, blogs can drive an incredible amount of traffic and provide many possibilities in terms of monetization.

To start an online business in Canada by running a successful blog, you’ll need to draw and captivate an audience. And one way to attract visitors to your blog is with SEO. You can also use social media to entice users to click on the link to your blog. 

As for cultivating your audience, it’s worth noting that posting for the sake of posting won’t cut it. Your blog needs to provide relevant, valuable content that addresses your target audience’s needs and genuinely helps them. That’s the only way you’ll be able to build a community that trusts you, turning your blog into a profitable online business.

Micki Kosman and Charles Kosman are two Canadians who turned their passion for travelling into a business, all with the help of their blog, The Barefoot Nomad.

Screenshot shows the home page of The Barefoot Nomad, an example of starting an online business in Canada as a blogger.

If you’re not sure how you can make money online from your blog, we’ve listed some of the possibilities below:

  • Publishing sponsored posts: when a brand pays you to write and publish a blog post that promotes their business.
  • Displaying ads: when companies pay you to display ads in your blog, usually banners or pop-up ads.
  • Selling your products and services: once you nurture a loyal audience, you can offer products or services related to your niche.
  • Paid subscriptions: you have the option to offer exclusive content to readers who sign up for a monthly fee.
  • Affiliate marketing: you join an affiliate program and get individual links or promo codes to be included in your blog post, where you can recommend products or services. Then, you receive a commission for every purchase made through those links or codes.

💡A quick tip: if you plan on starting an online business in Canada as a blogger, consider honing your writing skills. Tools like Grammarly can help you get your message across and craft blog posts that look professionally written.

10. Work as a virtual assistant

Photo shows a woman working from home, sitting on the floor and using a laptop. She's holding a notebook and she's looking at the screen. Photo illustrates how a person can start an online business in Canada as a virtual assistant.

If organization is your superpower, why not turn it into a business? A virtual assistant provides administrative services to entrepreneurs and business owners who need a little help coordinating their professional and personal lives.

You can offer a wide array of services, from answering emails and scheduling appointments to basic marketing management, and you can do it all from home.

Not every client will need assistance for 40 hours a week, so you can have more than one client at once. And because all your work is done online, you can find clients anywhere in the world. Once you build a considerable client base, you may have the opportunity to hire other VAs and expand your business, turning it into a VA agency.

11. Start a podcast

Photo shows a person sitting across from a laptop, speaking into a microphone and wearing headphones. This is an example from the section on starting an online business in Canada with a podcast.

Podcasts are here to stay. According to a 2021 survey, 33% of Canadian adults listen to podcasts, and between the ages of 18 and 49, that number rises to 46%. So why not take advantage of this popularity and launch your podcast?

Just like with starting a blog, creating a podcast is an opportunity to monetize content with very little investment. All you need is a high-quality microphone and recording software to ensure your listeners get the best sound possible.

If you have decided to start an online business in Canada, but you’re not sure podcast is the way to go, here’s something that might convince you: when it comes to content monetization, there are multiple paths to take. You can make money by finding sponsors and advertisers, selling merch, or even branching out to other media, such as Instagram, YouTube and your own website.

12. Become an influencer

Before you frown at the idea of becoming an influencer, hear us out. Influencer marketing is an indispensable part of digital marketing nowadays, and there’s a good explanation for it.

Because some influencers have been called out for untrustworthy recommendations, many brands are now turning to micro-influencers to promote their products or services. The truth is that micro-influencers tend to be a safer bet for brands; not only do they boast higher engagement rates but also convey more authenticity and credibility than influencers with millions of followers.

That is excellent news for you because you don’t have to gather millions of followers to make money as an influencer. All you need is a small, close-knit, loyal community that engages with you and your content.

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Not sure where to start? We’ve made a list to guide you:

13. Build an app or a website

Ever felt like saying, “I wish there was an app for that”? With some coding skills (or a friend who can code), you can start an online business in Canada and turn your solution to a problem into a profitable app.

As a developer, you have the opportunity to create mobile apps, websites or software, then sell them as a product or service.

Shoplazza, for instance, is a great example of a place to start from. In our Developer Center, you can build apps or themes and make them available to Shoplazza merchants. And once you learn all things Shoplazza, you’ll be able to work directly with merchants and design bespoke solutions for their ecommerce.

14. Do affiliate marketing

Think of how many services and products you have recommended just because you liked them. Now imagine getting paid for each recommendation. Sounds amazing, doesn’t it?

Here’s how affiliate marketing works: you recommend a product or service and share a link or promotional code so people can buy it, then you get a commission for each purchase made through this referral link or code (which is exclusive to you).

One of the many benefits of becoming an affiliate marketer is that you don’t have to worry about customer service, order fulfillment, payments, etc. All you have to do is curate products or services and promote them to your audience.

Many brands and companies have an affiliate program you can join. To work as an affiliate marketer, make sure you find a product or service that matches your personality, brand and target audience. For example, if ecommerce is your thing, you can join the Shoplazza Affiliate Program.

15. Create and curate subscription boxes

Another way to work with products and brands you already love is by curating subscription boxes.

The subscription business model grew during the Covid-19 pandemic and is about to increase even more: the market size is expected to reach $120 billion in 2022 and an astounding $904 billion by 2026.

You can create subscription boxes of pretty much anything, as long as the theme is well-defined: books, makeup, snacks, wine, stationary, and so on. Hello Fresh, for example, is a meal-prep subscription service in which customers can choose the kind of meals they want and have all the ingredients and recipes sent over to their house on a regular basis.

meal prep box to start an online business in canada

Now you might be asking: what draws consumers to this kind of service? Here are a few reasons people love subscription boxes:

  • Convenience. Your subscribers don’t have to choose products because you do it for them. In fact, once your subscription service becomes popular, customers will trust that you’ll carefully select the best products for their boxes. They don’t have to place orders either because they automatically get the products by paying a monthly subscription.
  • Excitement. Some subscription boxes consist of a surprise selection. Customers know what kind of products they get but don’t learn the box’s contents until it arrives at their home. Also, subscription boxes usually come in beautiful, customized packaging. Offering a memorable unboxing experience adds to the excitement of getting a new box each month.
  • Exclusivity. Often customers sign up for subscription services that provide exclusive products. Those can be either a different edition of an existing product or a product that hasn’t hit the market yet, making subscribers the first people to have access to it.

To start an online business in Canada by launching a subscription service, you’ll have to reach out to the brands and artists you love to negotiate an agreement to buy their products in bulk and resell them.

16. Stream your gaming on Twitch

This picture represents streaming on Twitch as an idea to start an online business in Canada. In the photo, there is a computer monitor, a keyboard, a desktop and headsets on a desk.

If you’re a gaming aficionado, then this idea is for you. Have you ever considered starting an online business in Canada by playing games?

Thanks to Twitch, this idea is attainable. All you have to do is pick a game you think your audience would be interested in, then encourage your viewers to interact with you and each other during your streaming.

Essentially, there are five things you can do to make money with your Twitch account:

  • Promoting brands
  • Receiving donations from viewers
  • Selling products and merch
  • Offering paid subscriptions 
  • Creating ads

Before you start, spend some time working on your identity and what makes you different from everybody else. This way, you won’t get lost in a sea of gaming entrepreneurs and will have a higher chance of creating a profitable online business.

17. Become a social media manager

If you know what it takes to build and grow a successful social media account, you could make money from it. There are a lot of entrepreneurs out there who want to start an online business in Canada and need help with their social media, and you can help them stand out from the crowd and sell online.

This photo represents working as a social media manager to start an online business in Canada. In the photo, there is a person sitting in a bar, and in the foreground there is someone else taking a picture of them with their phone.

But what does a social media manager do?

  • They design a company’s social media marketing strategy;
  • They monitor all activity on a company’s social media accounts, such as posts, comments and messages;
  • They manage content marketing campaigns and often help out in the creative process.

The good news is that you won’t need much upfront investment to launch your social media management business, and getting your first clients can be relatively easy. All you need is social proof, and you can obtain that by either growing your own social media account or offering to help out small online businesses struggling with their social media presence.

Once you achieve noticeable and measurable results, it’s time to promote your work. You can do so through your own social media channels and by creating your own website, where potential clients can easily access your portfolio.

💡A quick tip. If you need to hone your social media skills, check out the following resources:

18. Work as an online coach or mentor

If you enjoy interacting with people and feel capable of helping them out in a particular area, how about turning that into a service? You can start an online business in Canada as a coach or mentor with nothing but your knowledge about a topic and your interpersonal skills.

Picture that illustrates article on starting an online business in Canada shows a laptop on a wooden table, next to a ceramic mug. On the laptop screen, there are several people participating in a video call with their cameras on.

First, you’ll need to think of a topic you are highly familiar with and figure out how to help people with what you know. Once you have that sorted out, consider creating content on Instagram, TikTok or any other social network so you can attract an audience and begin scheduling one-on-one or group sessions.

Coaching and mentoring services are in high demand at the moment, with many people seeking guidance in their personal and professional lives. While most fields don’t require formal training, conducting your business ethically and responsibly is fundamental. Ensure you’re clear about how you can help your clients and the results they can expect from hiring your coaching or mentoring business.

19. Start an online food business

Any master chefs out there? Selling food items can be a profitable opportunity for those eager to start an online business in Canada.

Before you start, we recommend researching your province’s regulations regarding home-based food businesses. Up until 2021, for instance, the Ontario government required that food sold to the public had to be prepared in a commercial kitchen. However, the crisis that ensued from the COVID-19 pandemic forced the government to loosen that requirement. Now Ontarians are allowed to prepare and sell food from their home kitchen. 

While starting a food business may require some investment, you likely already have some of the materials you’ll need to make your first orders.

Like with most online business ideas, social media can be your starting point for promoting your food business. Make sure to take the best photos of your products, and they’ll sell like hotcakes.

20. Sell your art online

Picture that illustrates blog post to start an online business in Canada shows a person from the back, leaning over a table and drawing with pencil and paper. Opposite the drawer, there is another person using a laptop.

Photography, music, painting, designing – whatever your talent is, you can turn your art into a source of income.

To start an online business in Canada as an artist, you’ll need a place to showcase your work, such as social media, marketplaces and/or your own website. Not only can you sell your pieces but also make other products from them. For instance, if your talent is painting, you can print posters, t-shirts and mugs with your artwork.

21. Start an online print-on-demand business

Speaking of printing, why not run a print-on-demand business? If you have a knack for design or just have some cool ideas, you can try designing prints for t-shirts, mugs, pillows, and many other items.

Here’s how a print-on-demand business works: similar to a dropshipping business, you aren’t in charge of inventory or order fulfillment. Your products are printed as orders come in (hence the name “print on demand”), and your white-label supplier is responsible for shipping them to your customers.

If the print-on-demand model is your choice to start an online business in Canada, selecting the right print-on-demand service is of paramount importance. Shoplazza merchants, for instance, can use apps like HugePOD, which allows them to design their products without making any payments upfront.

Screenshot of HugePOD's page on Shoplazza App Store. HugePOD is a resource for people who want to start an online business in Canada by launching a print-on-demand business.

How to start an online business in Canada

Once your heart is set on a business idea, it’s time to begin setting up your business. But there’s no need to panic! We’re here to help you out. Keep reading to find out how to start an online business in Canada in 7 steps.

1. Conduct market research to start an online business in Canada

Is your business idea viable? Is there a market for it? Or, to put it simply, can you actually make money from it?

Carrying out market research is fundamental to ensure you have a good idea in your hands. In order to do so, research everything there is to know about your market. Here are some tips to help you get started:

  • Assess market demand. Are there people out there looking for a product or service like yours? Is your chosen market trending on social media or search engines at the moment?
  • Find your target audience. Who would be interested in your services or products? What characteristics can you use to define them (i.e. age group, location, occupation, hobbies, etc.)?
  • Carry out a competitive analysis. Who are your main competitors? How can you differentiate your online business from theirs?

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2. Plan your business and finances

After you collect all the information you need, write it down. Those notes will allow you to craft your business plan.

There are numerous benefits to writing a business plan:

  • Organize and assess your ideas. Having a clear perception of your business and how the market works will help you keep your goals on track. A business plan can also provide you with a big-picture perspective, making it easier to identify the best business ideas.
  • Keep your business within budget. Even the best business ideas can die without a careful financial plan. Make a list of your business’ income sources, assets, and cash flow projections.
  • Create a more effective strategy. You can’t run a successful business blindly. You need data in order to make strategic decisions for your business. As you craft a business plan, you’ll gather all the information about your market in a single document, which you can use to define your business strategies.
  • Find partnerships and investors. Further down the road, you might need to reach out to other entrepreneurs or online businesses to seek partnerships or investments. For that, you’ll want to have a clear understanding of your market, your audience and your business.

💡A quick tip. Consider opening a business bank account to maintain your personal finances separate from your business.

3. Prepare your products or services

Now that the planning stage is over, it’s time to get your business idea off the ground! And the first thing you need to do is develop what you will sell online.

If you’re offering services, you’ll have to figure out how to present those services online and how much to charge for them.

Most online businesses create packages to make the decision-making process easier for the client. For instance, if you have decided to start an online business in Canada to provide writing services, you can organize packages according to the number of words or the content format.

As for products, your next step will depend on the business model you’ve chosen:

  • If you’re making your own products, you might need to create prototypes, test them, and find suppliers for your materials.
  • If you’re reselling products, you may have to choose suppliers and curate high-quality products to start selling.
  • If you’re dropshipping, you’ll have to select your dropshipping suppliers and ask for sample products.

4. Create your brand to start an online business in Canada

First-time entrepreneurs often overlook this step, but you shouldn’t make the same mistake. A solid, consistent brand can help your business become more memorable and gain your audience’s trust.

While building a brand can be costly, you don’t need to spend much to get started. We’ve listed a few things you can do on your own or with minimal support if you’re on a budget:

  1. Determine your brand’s focus. Who exactly do you want to speak to? What message do you want to convey to them? Remember that a brand cannot speak to everyone at the same time, particularly when it’s still unknown in the market. The more specific your target audience is, the better. Once you define your audience, define your brand voice and value proposition.
  2. Choose a business name. You know it’s a big decision, so spend some time on this one. Make sure to select a name that is easy to pronounce and communicates your brand’s focus and personality. Not feeling inspired? There are some free brand name generators online you can use. After settling on a name, check if other companies have the same name and if the domain name you want is available. We recommend purchasing your domain name right away.
  3. Define the visual identity of your brand. This is where you might need outside help. A freelance designer can help you develop a visual identity and make sure it conveys your brand’s message and personality. If you have a knack for design, however, you can do it independently. Tools like Coolors and Fontpair allow you to find colours and fonts that go well together, and you can also look for free logo generators online.
  4. Apply your branding everywhere. Consistency is the operative word here. Once your brand is ready, use it on your website, social media and communications.

Photo that illustrates blog post on starting an online business in Canada shows a person from behind, sitting at a desk, in front of two monitors. On the monitor screens, they are looking at colour palettes and fonts.

 

5. Register your business

As soon as you pick a business name, you can begin registering your business with the Canadian government. Regulations for obtaining a business number vary according to each province, and you might not have to register your business depending on your annual revenue. 

Take some time to learn more about the business registration process in one of the links below:

Before starting an online business in Canada, you should also learn more about how taxes for business work. Make sure to visit the Canada Revenue Agency website to learn more.

6. Build your online presence

It goes without saying that starting an online business in Canada requires you to find a place to offer your services or sell online. While most online businesses begin operating on social media or an online marketplace, we recommend you create your own business website.

Imagine you’re building your entire business around Instagram, for instance. All your customers, products and marketing campaigns are there. What happens if, one day, Instagram is shut down? That’s right; you’ll lose your business. That’s why it’s essential to invest in a space of your own, one that is entirely under your control.

There are several website builders out there to cater to a variety of business needs. Some are highly customizable but require a web development team to set up your online store. Other e-commerce platforms, on the other hand, make it easier for a small online business to create an online store.

For instance, Shoplazza is a popular choice because it provides merchants with a user-friendly interface, affordable plans and easy integration with major partners to help them promote their online businesses and process orders online (such as Google, Meta and PayPal).

Start your 7-day Shoplazza free trial

But that doesn’t mean you should neglect social media altogether. Creating social media accounts for your business is fundamental to making your company seem legitimate and allowing potential customers to find you.

During this stage, ensure that your brand identity is consistent across your website and social media accounts.

💡A quick tip. Not sure how to set up your online store? We’ve got some resources for you:

7. Promote your business online

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What began as a great online business idea has transformed into a concrete business, ready to start making money online. Time to spread the word and get your first customers!

Here are a few digital marketing strategies you can use to promote your business online:

  • Social media marketing. Many consumers use social media to find products or services. Before you even launch your business, you can create social media posts to build up hype around your brand. After your online store is up and running, social media marketing will be valuable to attract customers and foster a sense of community.
  • Email marketing. It’s never too early to start building an email list and designing email marketing strategies. You can collect customers’ emails through your checkout form and even include a sign-up box on your website. Email marketing tools like MailChimp and ConvertKit offer free plans to help you get started.
  • SEO marketing. You’ll want people to be able to find your website on Google or other search engines. For that, you’ll need to invest in SEO (search engine optimization). Some website builders like Shoplazza offer built-in features to help you optimize your online store.

Ready to start an online business in Canada?

In order to start an online business in Canada, all you need right now is an idea. Once you have that great online business idea, you can work on it step by step: research your market, develop your product or service, create a brand and get your business license with the Canadian government. Then, consider the most popular website builders and choose the one that’s best for your business. As soon as you’re ready to go, focus on promoting your business online and bringing in your first customers.

We know that starting an online business in Canada might seem overwhelming or even scary. That’s alright. Important steps often make us feel unsure. But remember: your new online business doesn’t have to be big. In fact, you don’t even have to do it as a full-time job if you don’t want to. You can always start small and grow your business into something more once you gain confidence – if that’s what you wish to do. The best part of having your own business is that you get to decide what your future looks like.

Bianca Freitas

Written by: Bianca Freitas

Bianca Freitas is a Content Marketing Specialist at Shoplazza. When she's not writing about ecommerce (or reading, or talking about it), she's doing jigsaw puzzles, reading books or spending too much time on Reddit.