eBay Open

We're a sponsor at eBay OpenCome learn about the Virutal ERP for e-Commerce

Hey eBay sellers, we’re a bronze sponsor of the 2017 eBay Open conference, which, as you know, will be held July 25-28 in Las Vegas. Whether you’re a current customer, prospective customer, partner, or a superfan, please stop by and see us in person. To make it official and schedule a product demo with sales, email sales@webgility.com.@eBayOpen is coming and @Webgility will be there to help you build a better business. #unify Click To Tweet

On the left of the hall near the Innovation kiosk, we’ll be demonstrating how to build a simple, smart, and scalable online business with the essential e-commerce tech stack. For a little fun, we’re inviting all attendees to stop by and enter our “Guess the LEGOs” game for a chance to win an Amazon Echo or, the grand prize, six free months of the Virtual ERP for e-Commerce. While supplies last, entrants will be awarded with their own bag of LEGOs, and a winner will be chosen daily. Continue reading

Beyond Amazon: The Rise of the Niche Economy

Beyond Amazon: The Rise of the Niche EconomyAn interview with Webgility CEO Parag Mamnani by Ina Steiner for EcommerceBytes 411

Amazon is an important marketplace, but online merchants should not limit themselves to a single channel, according to Parag Mamnani, the founder and CEO Webgility (pictured). He also notes that as Amazon is bringing about commoditization, there is a side effect: The desire on the part of shoppers for quality, unique, and crafted goods. Mamnani says sellers should find creative ways to use Amazon and other marketplaces: “My advice is to sell products on multiple channels, including Amazon,” he told EcommerceBytes. “Some retailers break down their inventory and sell just a specialized sub-section on Amazon to move larger amounts at lower margins. And some sell in bulk on their own website versus moving a single product on Amazon.”

Giants such as Walmart, Jet, Target, Costco, and Rakuten are expanding their footprints, as the Facebook marketplace, the inevitable Google marketplace, and Pinterest Buy It buttons mean social media selling also looms on the horizon. “This gradual disruption will give small businesses more choices from which to sell their products and that will lead to improved experiences for both the buyer and the seller,” according to Mamnani.

That provides not only opportunities, but challenges as well: “That increase in choice will also mean there will be more systems for online merchants to figure out and integrate.” So what are the lessons for merchants – should they be content to rely on Amazon for a majority of sales, or should they be diversifying – and if so, how? “In 2017 there will be plenty of folks who don’t want everything they own to be found on Amazon, and that is why marketplaces like Etsy are booming and custom Shopify stores are being launched every day. The niche economy will be sustained and grow internationally as entrepreneurs are more educated, supported, and empowered by the larger global ecommerce infrastructure that’s found on marketplaces and platforms.”

Where should smaller sellers be focusing their efforts – commodities or niche? “In the coming year, niche products, crafts, and small-batch merchandise are going to continue to accelerate in popularity. In fact, the very commoditization of most goods will cause individuality and quality to rise in value and importance. And since consumers are all buying the same commodity items, those costs will be driven even further down.”

Mamnani’s company services merchants with a wide range of revenue, between $250K to $50M each year. “Their revenue growth usually increases quickly once they add infrastructure efficiencies like automating sales data, inventory, shipping, and accounting,” he said. “We find that ecommerce owners who take steps to get out of the day-to-day minutia of operations and begin to focus on growth and data analysis see very quick returns on their investment in technology.” Continue reading

The Blueprint for e-Commerce in 2017

The Blueprint for e-Commerce in 2017The framework of what’s to come this year and beyond

I’ve been building e-commerce storefronts, platforms, and software for 15 years. And because that in e-commerce time is akin to dog years, that means I’ve been in and around the business for several lifetimes.This unusual perspective gives me special abilities to size up the future, not just because I see the patterns of the e-commerce economy, but because of a well-earned wisdom I’ve acquired by studying our 4000-plus customers for so long. Here’s my list of what e-commerce can expect from 2017 and beyond.

The rising tide against Amazon will grow. Sure, we’ve watched Amazon develop tremendously over the last 10 years and that will continue. But the current of the industry is shifting as we speak and bringing with it different and, yes, even exciting new marketplaces. The giants—Walmart, Jet, Target, Costco, Rakuten—are expanding their footprints with marketplaces from both physical and online stores. Similarly, with the Facebook marketplace, the inevitable Google marketplace, and Pinterest Buy It buttons, social media selling also looms on the horizon. This gradual disruption will give small businesses more choices from which to sell their products and that will lead to improved experiences for both the buyer and the seller. On the flip side, that increase in choice will also mean there will be more systems for online merchants to figure out and integrate. @ParagMamnani shares his Blueprint for #eCommerce in #2017. See what's coming and adjust #Unify Click To Tweet

But we knew this would happen, didn’t we? The big fights that Amazon has been picking with film, TV, music, shipping carriers, delivery, and now grocery were bound to have an effect eventually. Although Google and Walmart are already fighting the behemoth, more resources, resistance, and competitors are finding their positions on the front lines. SMBs and consumers want more choice—and now they won’t have to do battle because the bigger players are doing it for them.

Two categories will emerge: commodities and niche. In the coming year, niche products, crafts, and small-batch merchandise are going to continue to accelerate in popularity. In fact, the very commoditization of most goods will cause individuality and quality to rise in value and importance. And since consumers are all buying the same commodity items, those costs will be driven further down. Even for the newish commodity items—like $20 jeans found on OldNavy.com—there will be markets created by creative SMBs, or even the luxury industry, for consumers who want their jeans to be special. In 2017 there will be plenty of folks who don’t want everything they own to be found on Amazon, and that is why marketplaces like Etsy are booming and custom Shopify stores are being launched every day. The niche economy will be sustained and grow internationally as entrepreneurs are more educated, supported, and empowered by the larger global e-commerce infrastructure.   Continue reading

The ultimate guide to high performing Amazon sponsored ad PPC campaigns

Simple instructions for creating a high performing Amazon Sponsored Ad Campaign, written by Grace Macatangay

You ever hear the saying “traffic is king”? We didn’t either, until Amazon banned incentivized reviews tied to Amazon sellers giving away free or heavily discounted products in exchange for reviews (which artificially increased traffic and sell-through velocity on your Amazon product listings). Now there is a new king in town, and that’s Amazon’s Sponsored Ad platform, which can drive significant traffic to your Amazon listings.

At first glance of Amazon Sponsored Ads seemed intimidating, but the traffic benefits to your Amazon product listings are insane. As Skubana said in this blog post, we’re now entering a pay-to-play Amazon environment in 2017 – you gotta pay, to make money on Amazon and that money is going back into Amazon’s pocket.

Here’s proof of what one of Skubana’s clients shared with us and what Sponsored Ads can do for you:

 The ultimate guide to high performing Amazon sponsored ad PPC campaigns

This Amazon seller generated $200,000 on spend of $35,0000 – meaning, for every $1 of sales generated, Amazon is getting roughly 17 cents. That’s a great deal, and will change depending on what category you sell in.

Let’s now get to gold nuggets of our guide—creating an Amazon Sponsored Ad campaign that works, drives traffic and most importantly, is profitable.  Even if you’re already using Amazon PPC to drive traffic and sales, you can benefit from some of these tips to increase relevance, find new keywords, and lower your ACOS.

We’re going to show you how this is done. Look no further:

The Basics: Why Use Amazon Sponsored Product Ads?
Amazon’s sponsored product ad platform is a tremendously powerful tool for Amazon sellers that is surprisingly underutilized, even by large Amazon retailersDespite that, it is a tool that you can use to increase your traffic and sales with only a small investment, while reaping other benefits that will in turn add value to your entire campaign.
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How to compete with Amazon

IAmazon e-commerce SMBdentifying and capitalizing on Goliath’s weak spots

It’s a classic David versus Goliath story. In 2015 alone Amazon raked in net sales of $107 billion and swallowed up 72% of online users in the U.S., making it both the Goliath we love to hate and the price leader we love to shop. But online retailers often wonder, Am I fighting a losing battle trying to compete with the monster of all monsters? Isn’t Amazon going to eat me alive anyway? I say it’s all in the approach. For those with the smarts, creativity, and fortitude, there are a few ways to save your e-tail village from Goliath and run a thriving e-commerce business. In any battle, it’s best to start with an understanding of your opponent’s strengths and weaknesses. Let’s start with the strengths.Smart strategies for #ecommerce #SMBs to battle @Amazon and live to see the profits. #Unify Click To Tweet

Amazon’s strengths
Captain Obvious would tell us that one of Amazon’s strengths is its massive catalogue of products. Like any business that wants to launch into a new category in a business, Amazon does their market research—and they’ve got some of the brightest people on the planet working for them. These folks are able to identify new and existing markets that have room for opportunity on price optimization. Five years ago, they weren’t selling a ton of custom apparel items and then they started to encroach in that market. Ten years ago they were not selling a lot of golf equipment, but then they figured out how to optimize their catalogue. Take batteries, for example. Amazon recognized that the category of batteries had been dominated by Duracell and Eveready for a very long time. By sheer volume, they figured out the unit economics and profit margins of selling so that they could manufacture, or white label, their own basic office products. With this data, they launched a whole brand called AmazonBasics and now you can buy Amazon-branded batteries, USB cables, and HDMI cables. For Amazon, it’s all about their massive catalogue and tackling massive markets. Continue reading