This is a guest post, and there will be a couple this week, since I am in New York City for BlogWorld.
The ecommerce world is booming, and Amazon isn’t the only ecommerce company that’s making money. Independent ecommerce merchants and ecommerce dropshipping companies are doing quite well. If you’ve decided to become an ecommerce retailer, you’ll definitely have some opportunities to make money, if you play your cards right.
Running an ecommerce business is just like running any other type of business. In order to succeed, you have to market yourself, sell useful products or services, and tightly manage your cash flow. If you’re a beginner ecommerce retailer who wants more of an ROI, here are a few things you can do:
1. Make smarter cash flow management decisions – If you’re in charge of the inventory you sell, you should put forth a good amount of effort and time into managing it. Monitor which products sell well and which don’t. Stop ordering large quantities of slow products or stop ordering slow products completely. Your cash is tied up in inventory until you sell it. If you can’t sell it, put it on sale or get rid of it, and order more of the products that are selling.
In addition to managing your inventory well, find suppliers that get inventory to you when you need it and who have flexible payment policies. In a perfect world, you’d be able to pay your suppliers after you made plenty of money off your inventory. This isn’t always possible, but you should try your best to find a supplier that will allow you to pay during the period of the month that’s most advantageous for you. This is possible. It just requires some shopping around for the right suppliers and some negotiating.
2. Build your credibility – For the first two or so years that you’re selling online, you’ll have to spend time building your reputation. You’ll have to go the extra mile for customers, so they’ll give you good reviews and refer you to their family members and friends. This means that you may have to pay a little bit extra sometimes to make sure something gets shipped to a customer on time. The best way to build credibility is to be good at what you do and provide good products. You can also build your credibility by making your website attractive and staying active on social media sites.
3. Keep an eye on the competition – Unless you’re selling in space with relatively low competition, you’re going to have to pay attention to what your competitors are doing. Keep up on their prices and deals. If you’re an ecommerce merchant who dropships, keep tabs on what other merchants who sell the same things as you are doing. Adjust your prices, offer coupons and other deals, and offer better shipping rates than other online stores. If you do, customers will buy stuff from you and will keep coming back.
Carolyn is a guest blogger on the subjects of entrepreneurship, the ecommerce industry, and order management techniques.