Giants like Amazon dominate ecommerce. Startups find themselves outgunned, and bigger companies often make easy targets. Whichever you are, you can use these six ecommerce business hacks to explode revenues, minimize costs and thrive in a competitive market:
Ecommerce Business Hacks for Making Money Fast
1. Prioritize CRM
Ecommerce customer relationship management provides mind-bogglingly high returns on investment. Transforming a new customer into a regular provides five times as much income as getting a new visitor to your site. Invest more into keeping your current customers than getting new ones. Learn how here.
2. Sell Multichannel
Too many businesses turn their noses up at selling on sites like eBay or Walmart. They obsess over perfecting their online store or crushing the competition on Amazon. By sticking to one or two sites, they limit their own revenues.
A survey of Amazon sellers asked about their total income from all channels. In addition to selling on Amazon, 71% of sellers making $2 million+ per year made some of that money on eBay. 51% of these multimillion-dollar businesses also sold on their own website.
In contrast, low-revenue sellers were much less likely to sell on additional channels like eBay, at 50%, or their own site, at 29%. This pattern stayed true across almost all selling channels.
In other words, companies that sell multichannel are more likely to make loads of money. So expand! Sell on your own site, but sell on Amazon and eBay too, and anywhere else people will buy from you. Don’t get stuck in a one-site rut.
3. Support Omnichannel
Omnichannel support is not just a buzzword. It can nearly triple your customer retention.
Support your customers everywhere they are—and do it well. That means support as many channels as you can manage effectively: email, social media, live chat, phone, etc. “Effectively” means fast and without forcing customers to repeat themselves if they switch channels.
Get started with our guide to ecommerce customer service.
4. Target Researchers
This gives you another reason to go multichannel. If you dominate the results on all four sites, you’ll seem like the obvious choice even to the most careful researchers. To do this, you’ll have to master not only standard SEO for Google, but site-specific practices as well. See our articles on Amazon SEO and eBay SEO for more.
Many of these researchers are checking prices. If you compete on price, make sure you do it not just for one site, but for all of the big four—at the very least.
For details, see “How Online Retailers Can Turn Pre-purchase Research into an Advantage.”
Streamlining & Simplifying Hacks
Every ecommerce business faces a storm of daily tasks. Between shipping and handling, customer service, bookkeeping and taxes and SEO and, well, a lot of other stuff, everyone who sells online ends up multitasking like crazy. And that is terrible for you. Use these business hacks to reclaim your time and dominate the competition:
5. Condense Customer Service
Going multichannel/omnichannel is fantastic for your business. But dealing with a different customer service system for every channel creates severe inefficiencies. So severe, in fact, that 4 out of 10 support reps “are unable to efficiently resolve customer issues” as a result.
eBay doesn’t exactly go out of its way to help you support Amazon customers at the same time, nor do Twitter and Facebook care to provide a mutually compatible messaging system. They want you to ignore their competitors. So getting everything in one place is normally impossible.
But you can boil it all down to one screen. Helpdesks like Zendesk and Freshdesk combine just about every customer service channel in one program. They can incorporate email, Facebook, Twitter, phone, live chat and more. You can even integrate tricky channels like Amazon, eBay and Walmart using apps like ChannelReply.
The boost to agent efficiency can save you a lot of money and improve customer satisfaction. It enables you to run an omnichannel empire as easily as a one-site business.
6. Automate and Universalize Pricing, Shipping and Inventory Management
Keeping your prices competitive across Amazon, Google, eBay and other sites to snare price researchers can eat up all your time. Consider automating your pricing with a multi-channel repricer. This kind of software is rarely cheap, but many solutions can find the perfect price for you and then adjust it across channels.
Similar systems can simplify your shipping and inventory. You can pull in data from multiple websites, mass print shipping labels or auto-update inventory levels, and generally save yourself a lot of time.
For specific pricing, shipping and inventory management solutions, see our article on multi-channel software.
By acting on these six ecommerce business hacks, you’ll both ensure your business grows rapidly and lay in the infrastructure you need to scale. Go make some money!