Many owners of online storefronts are resellers. Instead of producing their own merchandise, they instead find and source products from other suppliers to sell from their store (or even from platforms like eBay). Though it has its drawbacks, this ecommerce business model offers several advantages.
People who have the drive to start an online business but don't necessarily have the creative spark or the free time to make or manufacture their own products can certainly benefit from being a reseller. While there is still a significant time requirement involved in terms of creating a store and all the activities that entails, far less time will be required in the long run. Store owners will have to source products and find acceptable prices from suppliers like Alibaba, but they won't have to worry about actually making those items. This approach to creating an ecommerce website opens up time and resources that can be applied to other parts of the business, whether it's marketing, management of a store or any number of other considerations.
While being a reseller is a common ecommerce strategy, it's not without its problems. It's tougher for merchants to engage in quality control efforts. Of course they can return merchandise to their suppliers if it's unfit for sale, but that can delay incoming orders or limit available stock. Reselling items also means that other ecommerce stores will likely have some or all of the same products available. This means that other aspects of operation, such as marketing and price, take on a larger role. Finally. store owners have to regularly seek out and negotiate deals with suppliers to get the best possible price.