Setting up an online shop is now a painless process. You can sign up for a hosted store on a platform like Shopify or BigCommerce and apply a template design in minutes. Even for more complex, custom stores, working with an e-commerce design agency, you could go from just an idea to taking sales in as little as six weeks.
You just need a product.
To get you started with finding something profitable to sell, we’ve listed seven e-commerce niches that we see are growing in 2019.
1. Fashion Rental
The fashion industry has a disastrous impact on the environment. In fact, it’s the second largest polluter in the world, just after the oil industry.
Consider this in the context of increasing environmental concern from customers, coupled with increasing demand for fast fashion.
Fashion rental is the perfect solution.
Rental reduces waste. Also, customers may not have the budget for the latest Prada bag, but they could rent one for a few days.
Fashion rental is a niche that’s already established online and predicted to grow.
The concept is simple; buy designer pieces and put them on a website to be rented out. However, there are potential pitfalls. Designer pieces require considerable investment. You should consider whether you want to rent clothes or accessories, how you will deliver, what kind of contract you will have with customers and how you will clean and repair items.
Fashion rental sites like Girl Meets Dress hold funds in the same way hotels often do to protect against theft or damage. They also offer membership schemes. These are custom e-commerce features which would need to be built into your site.
2. Subscription Boxes
Subscription boxes offer customers convenience, new product discovery and savings. There are subscription schemes for everything from beauty products to books. It’s a retail trend that shows no signs of slowing. It’s a popular segment, but, if you have strong knowledge of a particular group you want to target, there’s great opportunity here.
3. Party Supplies
Parents are generally spending more on traditional party items for children, and in the Instagram age, they’re going above and beyond spending on room décor and extra accessories. Paper hats and a few balloons no longer cut it. Unicorn horn headbands, wings, giant balloons and themed props are all big sellers thanks to Pinterest and other social media.
This is great news for e-commerce entrepreneurs. Not just because there’s demand, but because most of these items are mass produced at low cost.
These items can all be bought cheap online if you are willing to wait 30 days for delivery from China. There is real opportunity for e-commerce entrepreneurs who can offer these products with the convenience of fast shipping.
Going beyond this, you could create pre-packaged birthday in a box with decorations around popular themes and ready stuffed party bags.
Deciding on themes, securing reliable fulfilment if you are not doing it yourself and finding fast and affordable delivery is essential for this niche.
4. Smoking Accessories
Vaping has been a booming e-commerce trend. However, due to legal restrictions and masses of red tape getting a vaping business started, it’s not one we would recommend for anyone not already familiar with this niche.
On the other hand, the legalisation of cannabis in many states has opened a massive new category for e-commerce retailers. Smoking accessories is a wide and diverse category, ranging from matches to bongs, ash trays and rolling papers.
Legalisation has widened this market and retailers are now creating luxury brands targeting groups who were previously un catered for in this niche.
5. CBD Pet Products
With legislation of CBD in many countries, the use of CBD oil products is growing. Not just for people, but pets too. Studies suggest CBD has positive effects on many health conditions in our furry friends. We expect it to become mainstream pet health product soon.
CBD oils are reported to help pets with epilepsy, joint pain and anxiety. It’s important to note the CBD should be THC-free, meaning without the psychotropic and addictive effect of marijuana.
For humans, we’ve seen CBD become a massive trend for topical beauty products as well as in supplements. Pastilles, balms, vape pens, oils and even infused waters are sold as CBD products. This wide range of products is marketed for an equally wide rage of problems. Anxiety, insomnia, sleep issues and skin complaints are all said to be helped by CBD products.
There’s no reason why the range of CBD products for pets could not be just as wide. Toys, edibles, washes and spritzes are all very marketable options.
Pets are family. Therefore, trust would be essential for any site looking to sell CBD pet products. Any entrepreneur looking to move into this niche should be prepared to invest time into building an appealing brand. Further, they should be prepared to work with design specialists to create great packaging and build an e-commerce store that projects trust.
6. Organic Personal Care Products
The organic personal care industry is expected to reach a whopping $716.6 billion by 2026.
Increased reporting on the environmental effects of plastic beads in personal care products and speculation about possible negative health effects of synthetic ingredients has increased interest in this niche.
Raw material costs mean that organic personal care products are not cheap to make. To achieve decent profits, these products need to be sold at high prices. In order to sell at high prices, you need to build a premium brand around the product.
Brand identity, packaging and buyer experience are the biggest concerns for entrepreneurs looking to move into this niche.
Over the past couple of years, personal planners and specialised journals have increased in popularity. Rising hand in hand with the mindfulness trend, journaling is making a comeback as people seek bring back focus and connection to self. Gurus telling their followers to write for 10 minutes a day and chronicle their path to success has created a profitable niche in journals and planners.
The Five-Minute Journal, The Bullet Journal, The Happiness Planner, The Anxiety Journal and The Passion Planner are all hugely successful products. Personal organisation is a growing trend and there’s scope for planners in all niches.
For example, one mother made a successful e-commerce business a selling journal for parents of children with autism. If you have a unique idea for a planner or journaling system, now is the time to get it out there.