The power-packed metrics that will have a big impact on your bottom line
Data is a hot topic lately. If you sell online, you know that order information from your marketplace stores enables the massive big data feeds of Amazon and the like to predict broad consumer behavior and seasonality, manage prices and fees across the channel, and control their interests in the inventory and fulfillment industries globally. While you’re powering someone else’s data, it also seems like every day you’re told to climb aboard the big data bandwagon where you, too, can ride into the sunset of freedom and happiness of higher sales, profit, and success.
But when it comes to practical application of collecting data and understanding the insights they offer, you draw a blank. You’re not alone. Turns out, 94% of companies across all levels have experienced internal challenges when trying to improve their data quality. One could theorize that this dissatisfaction may stem from sheer size and that big data has just become too big. Case in point: The fact is, every second of every day we create new data. To understand the scale, 40,000 Google search queries are performed every second, which makes it 3.5 billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year. Each of those, at a minimum, creates new keyword and search ranking data. On a more relevant note, while it’s wonderful that Amazon has 304 million active customer accounts worldwide, what can you learn about tapping into that fire hose, or more specifically, why does your store suddenly and inexplicable have a following from Stanley, Idaho? Continue reading
Determined to succeed in ecommerce? You aren’t alone.
But if you take the time to properly set up your systems, you’ll have a leg up on the competition, I promise. Here’s my simple but effective checklist for success:
TAKE A DEEPER DIVE
- Define your product catalog. Know what your differentiators are—the uniqueness of your products, competitive prices, free shipping, how your products are bundled—so that you can stand out from similar items.
- Pick the right channels. If you’re selling from your own web site, you’ll need to “pull” customers to your products. If you’re selling on marketplaces like Amazon and eBay, you’ll need to “push” your products, which means paying fees, and competing with pricing and shipping.
- Create streamlined workflows. If you’re not integrating and automating sales information into your accounting, inventory, and shipping systems, you can lose dozens of hours each week on data entry alone.
- Build ironclad fulfillment. A fulfillment system that is well-managed, accurate, and fast is the backbone of any e-commerce business.
- Be accountable. Take steps to properly track, validate, and pay sales tax properly with a proper accounting software and data automation so it’s all timely and accurate.
Tips for setting up workflows that produce more cash and less chaos.
When it comes to selling both B2C and B2B, with every product, price, and customer comes more data complexity. In fact, the pressure selling to these two groups puts on back-end systems is often the cause of unpleasant confusion on both sides of the sales funnel.
Let’s consider the simplest use case—selling products with different price points. If you have different price points for different customer segments, you’ll need to keep track within some system of record, typically in accounting. Instead of creating proper structural rules, most sellers end up creating different SKUs and then tagging a different price for each of them. Or they keep the product at the same SKU but provide different business logic for each customer segment and its corresponding price point. Continue reading
Compliance isn’t complicated with the right tools
Ecommerce sales tax is a moving target these days. It’s a tough one to stay on top of, but every business must deal with it. Just to be perfectly clear—collected sales tax is neither a cost to the seller nor does it belong to the seller once it is collected. But it is the seller’s responsibility to collect the required sales tax from their customers and submit to tax agencies when it is due.
For starters, you need to have your shopping cart set up to collect sales tax. At that point, an automation software like Webgility Unify can grab it and record it in QuickBooks. This is helpful because, at any point in time, you can easily view your Sales Tax Liability in QuickBooks. In other words, you know what money you’re holding for different states and you are not spending that isn’t yours. Continue reading
Now it’s even easier for Amazon sellers to unify their entire ecommerce business
Great things are happening with your favorite ecommerce management company! To be specific, we’ve officially been chosen to participate in the newly formed Amazon Marketplace Developer Council. Sounds big, but what does that mean? Members of the Amazon Marketplace Developer Council have a unique perspective and understanding of the small and medium-sized businesses that sell on Amazon. Through the Marketplace Developer Council, we’ll share valuable insights and feedback to help shape the roadmap and priorities for Marketplace Web Service APIs and associated tools. Continue reading