More than ever, shoppers are turning towards eCommerce for their needs. After all, it’s far more convenient to order something online and receive a door-to-door delivery. Especially, when you are buying something as discreet as a sex toy, you don’t want any judging eyes laying to you while entering a sex toys shop down the street.
Online sex toys store is a niche eCommerce business. Although like any other business, customers expect an extra layer of direction and anonymity when it comes to buying sex toys, online or offline. That’s what makes online sex toys shop relevant for satisfying some special needs of the customers.
How to start an online sex toy store?
The recent developments in the web-tech solutions and availability of turnkey eCommerce scripts have made it fairly easy to not only build eCommerce stores without coding knowledge but also find products to sell on them from the very first day.
In fact, you need not even manufacture your sex toys. Dozens of reputed drop shipping suppliers are providing product sourcing services to N numbers of online adult stores on the internet. You can simply integrate their APIs in your eCommerce platform and get a pre-populated catalog of thousands of adult products on your store.
xMarketplace is one such turnkey script. It allows you to set up an online sex toys store without any programming knowledge, while you can also use its integrated drop shipping APIs to list over 1000+ products on your store from the first day itself.
It’s a self-hosted script and comes with complete source-code access. That means, you can host your website on a web-server of your choice, and need not pay any recurring fee to keep using it for running your niche adult eCommerce business.
Is it this easy to start an online sex toys store?
Without a doubt! However, the biggest question is not how to start a sex toy business online, but it is rather how to sell sex toys online when building such stores has become a piece of cake these days. You can build an online sex toys shop in no time, but running an online sex shop isn’t always this easy.
From the outside, it’s just like any regular eCommerce business. From the inside, it’s prone to critical ups and downs, cutthroat competition, privacy concerns, and some legal complications, too.
Fortunately, these challenges also make this business “not-everyone’s-cup-of-tea”. I have worked with dozens of adult eCommerce entrepreneurs, and one thing that is common in everyone is, they all possess prompt strategies to deal with each of these challenges, rather than running away from them.
So, how to sell adult toys online without running into the pitfalls?
How to sell sex toys online?
Based on the tips from some of the most successful adult eCommerce store owners, I have prepared this list of best practices you can adopt to run an online sex toys shop successfully:
1. A diverse catalog of adult products
Adult eCommerce may be a niche business idea, but it is not as massive to experiment with micro-niches in it. Besides, the sex tech industry is known for new and exciting products that come from time to time. Instead of focusing on sex toys alone, expand your catalog to accommodate new products for pleasure enhancement.
For example, while you can always list traditional sex toys like Dildos and Cock Rings, you can also sell interesting new inventions. The key is to offer something for everyone but in an organized manner. You don’t want to clutter your catalog but order into distinct categories to make product discovery as easier as possible. For example, you can classify based on fetishes such as Light-play, Hard Core, BDSM, Cosplay.
2. Expand into accessories
While sex toys would remain the primary source of income for your adult sex toys website, a great deal of revenue can come from accessories, too. Sexual wellness products, condoms, tampons, and costumes also demand discreetness. Besides, people purchase sex toys for once and typically use them for a while. In the meantime, you can attract them back to your store by offering accessories such as lubricant, sex toy cleaning supplies, powders, batteries, chargers, beauty, and other products that can go with sex toys for pleasure enhancement.
3. Strategic Marketing
An online sex shop is like any other eCommerce website, and every website needs marketing. The only difference is you might not be able to promote on mainstream TV, newspapers, and websites, but you can still access tons of digital marketing channels to spread your words.
- You can use Display Ads on Adult Ad networks.
- Create in-roll video Ads for porn tube sites.
- Invest in Adult website SEO.
- Build links with other adult websites.
- Partner up for affiliate marketing with:
- Adult Industry bloggers
- Social media influencers
- Adult webcam girls
- OnlyFans models
The key is to target the customers without depending on the mainstream marketing channels. The adult industry ecosystem is now vast enough to have dedicated adult marketing campaigns.
4. Nothing would work without discreetness
By being discreet, you ensure that your customers get a private shopping experience on your platform. You need to ensure that everything from payment methods to product packaging, shipping methods, and delivery mechanisms is not forcing your customers into revealing what they have purchased.
You can ensure that by tweaking a few mechanisms in your regular workflow. For example:
- Use high-risk payment gateways that offer an extra layer of payment security.
- Offer discreet invoicing without revealing the purchase details in credit card statements. You can do this by accepting prepaid gift cards, too.
- Offer discreet packaging of the products that do not reveal the product details in anyways to the delivery personnel.
- Use unmarked plain boxes, and do not reveal the product details on the courier label.
- Let the customer choose if they don’t want to reveal their personal information other than required details for order processing.
If you haven’t done that already, use a reliable eCommerce platform or turnkey script for running your website. Besides, every third-party API and plugin must demonstrate robust security features. Get online safety certifications such as PCI-DSS Compliant payment gateway, SSL certificate, and anti-virus badges. These certifications will help you gain the trust of your consumers. Rest everything is all about efficient marketing, promotions, and advertisements.