Online beauty is booming, and it’s not just big brands that are getting in on the $532 billion dollar industry. Small brands with a focus on a single product (artisanally made soaps or niche lines of makeup) account for more and more of the beauty industry. If you’re a beauty entrepreneur, you need a website to get your beauty supply shop in on this action.
If you’re wondering how to start a beauty supply store, look no further. This guide breaks the process into five easy steps.
As soon as you’ve taken these steps, your beauty supply store business will be ready for launch.
1. Develop your online beauty supply store theme
As you begin your online beauty store journey, start by identifying your store’s unique voice or the specific demand your business will serve. This important step will inform every other decision, from picking a name for your store to designing your logo and site. As a beauty enthusiast, you already have a unique taste. Ask yourself the following questions to envision how you can communicate it to your customers:
- Who is your target audience? Are your products towards Gen Z or Gen X? Are your potential customers excited about Coachella, or about composting your packaging? The look and feel of your store should appeal to your target demographic.
- What’s your brand identity? Do you want your customers to turn to your social media feeds for pure beauty inspiration, irreverent posts, or your authoritative explanation of active ingredients in your beauty products?
- What’s your focus? Are you interested in selling a full line of natural hair or skincare products, a single perfect pink lip gloss, or nail care products and polishes? Keeping your beauty salon product line small, to begin with, can help develop a niche brand, but you want to leave room for growth, too.
As you get a clearer sense of your store’s focus, you’ll be able to come up with a short, catchy name that sums up what you’re offering. With the name in mind, you’ll have developed your brand.
This brand will then influence everything from your selling angle to the logo.
2. Design and build your platform
Even without any coding skills, you can combine your aesthetic taste with website creation tools to create a site that reflects your brand’s unique look and feel.
Using the website builder of your choice, look through potential site templates. Once you’ve found the one you like, try selecting a header image for your homepage. A good header image for your beauty store could include:
- A model made up with your beauty products
- A flat-lay photograph of the products themselves
- A picture of botanical ingredients used in your products
- A photograph that speaks to your brand identity
Customize your template
After you’ve chosen a header image, you can begin customizing your site.
Choose a color scheme
Your logo and header image may give you a clear sense of your color scheme. Build on the colors in these images to customize your template further.
To keep your color scheme clear and easy to read, use the site builder’s tools to experiment with header colors, background colors, textures, and link colors. As a beauty expert, you likely have a good eye for what makes a color “pop,” so pair a bright logo and header image with more neutral text or vice versa.
Choose your fonts
Create page text and navigation text that compliments your logo. If you’re new to designing with type, you can follow a few general rules. Sans-serif fonts are easy on the eyes. This makes them a solid choice for any areas on your website that are text-heavy. It’s also a good idea not to populate your text with too many fonts. Three or fewer is a good amount. From there, you can also use bold, italics, and other formatting to further make titles and text pop.
Create content for your pages
Once you’ve established your site’s appearance, start filling its pages with content.
As you create your website, you’ll start with three central pages before you tackle the task of building your store:
- About page
- Contact page
As your brand grows in the beauty supply industry, you may want to create an FAQ page, a portfolio, and more. To begin with, though, focus on these three pages. You can always add more later.
The first impression: The homepage
Once you’ve chosen your header image, finish designing your homepage. For an online beauty store, be sure to:
- Include a menu – While continuous scroll pages look great on some devices, they’re not ideal for stores, where finding the right product could take a lot of scrolling.
- Incorporate text – Let the reader know what they can expect from your store. Be sure to:
- Include a short description of your brand, or even a few reviews and testimonials. Try to aim for less than 300 words of text, and even less if you’re going for a minimalist approach.
- Make sure all the text appears before a visitor has to scroll.
- Include a “call to action” (CTA): a button or link to show where users can find your newest product or browse your entire line.
See behind “the curtain” with the About page
When you developed your beauty brand, you spent time considering what’s unique about the products and approach you offer. Use your About page to put this into writing, and improve your search rankings in the process.
How? Marketers call the process of boosting your web page in search engine results: search engine optimization (SEO). To optimize your About page:
- Write at least 300 words
- Include keywords or questions your customers might search for, especially if they’re something only your small brand can offer: “handcrafted soap,” “Hawaii-made,” “Sephora alternative small business,” etc.
Let your customers reach out with the Contact page
As your customers shop for cosmetics, hair salon products, and nail care, they may have questions. Potentially about your products and shipping, or they may even have supply distributor or PR inquiries. To make sure interested parties can get in touch with your supply shop, include:
- Social media links (Facebook and Instagram)
- How to get in touch via email (you may choose to include a form directly in your page)
- A contact email
- An address and phone number if appropriate
3. Choose the right domain name for your new website
Your domain name sets the stage for your customers’ experience with your store. To create a successful debut, choose a name closely tied to the text on your logo.
If your store shares its name with other businesses, add a few words related to your location (city or state) at the end of your name. A beauty supply online store called Electric Red, for example, could consider domain names like:
If you’re an ecommerce store without a physical location, you might hesitate to use the above domain tip. There’s another solution: use online domain name searches like Google Domains to search for domain name endings beyond .com, .org, and .net. Great options for your beauty store might be:
Search your desired domain name and view the yearly price for each option. Once you’ve locked down your perfect match, and with your platform built out, all that’s left is to stock your store and start selling.
4. Stock your ecommerce store with your products (or services)
We said there were three essential pages for your new website. And that’s true — but you also need your store page! (This one is so essential we gave it its own section.)
In the days of internet yore, allowing users to shop your site meant having a shopping channel alongside a separate web page. Today, you can often build your store inside your site. If you’ve chosen a platform that doesn’t provide that option, look into linking your website to your Shopify, WooCommerce, or other online stores.
5. Reach out and connect with your customers
As a small business, you need ways to connect with past and future customers to let them know about sales and promotions, new products, and changes to your business. As a beauty brand, you know you need an active Instagram account and may even be considering YouTube MUA tutorials or Twitter for engaging other beauty brands. But don’t sleep on the power of a store newsletter.
Use your website to its fullest by including sign-up forms to grow your email list and expand the ways you can connect with your customers.