How to Successfully Ensure Online Business Management

Overview

Being associated in the online business management or an e-commerce seller means one needs to give more detailed thought into how the business is going to be managed on a day to day basis. This will invariably depend on individual circumstances, resources, time constraints, overall objectives, preferences as well as service and production needs.

Regardless of the parameters, one thing is certain: online business owners crucially ‘need’ to plan and manage resources effectively, to ensure continued profits, growth and consistent success.

For any online business management, outsourcing and managed services are two online business strategies that play a critical role in the smooth functioning of any online business.

Perception

Most entrepreneurs have great talents but (often) think they can do it all. When managing an online business, however, owners often lack expertise or interest in a specific area. This is not necessarily a bad thing and more often than not, business owners can build a better business with outsourcing.

Over the years, people’s perception of outsourcing has changed dramatically. In the past, outsourcing was seen as something only attainable to ‘big businesses’ that require certain skills but wanted to avoid adding overall headcount. With the internet, however, came global connectivity which has fundamentally changed the way and extent to which both large and small businesses outsource.

Virtual Assistants

There is no doubt that outsourcing to Virtual Assistants and Virtual Assistant Agencies is an attractive online business strategy with plenty of benefits to be had for small businesses and website owners alike. Embedding a well-defined, sustainable outsourced model helps free up management/owner time, which is often better spent working on more strategic elements of the business. In essence, outsourcing helps internet businesses remain agile, whilst contractors benefit from freedom and mobility.

Not only this, but rates for contractors and virtual assistants are often much lower than web owner are able to pay in their home country. In short, well-structured virtual teams can help cut overhead costs.

Striking the Right Balance

That being said, whilst putting together well-structured virtual teams of assistants, creates a level of flexibility and efficiency that is unlikely to be achieved any other way, pulling together the right team with the right skills at the right time requires detailed planning. Finding the right balance takes time, trust and patience.

Hence, therefore Urtasker – a globally renowned New-York based Virtual Assistant Agency believes that the revenue your business makes is for you to keep. But the costs your business incurs are for you to reduce! They go hand in hand, and a successful eCommerce or online business knows that! The benefits of effective outsourcing online business strategies are countless for ensuring successful online business management – consistently!

One of those benefits is pretty obvious to start off: You will not have to pay any sick leave, casual leave, or any other retirement benefit to your virtual assistant. You just pay for the time your virtual assistant works for. No work means no money! Simple!

The Power of Embracing Change

Embracing change and converting your weak areas into strong points is the success formula for any online business management approach. With virtual assistants, you can bridge the skill gap in your small business. Gone are the days when virtual assistants used to be only simple remote workers. Now, they are skilled professionals and can do a wide range of tasks.

Whether you need someone to manage social media or somebody to conduct product research for Amazon, Shopify or eBay, you can easily hire a virtual assistant for the same.

Track, Monitor and Improve

When a virtual assistant is on-boarded, the process doesn’t end. It is important to manage a virtual team effectively, to ensure that pre-agreed milestones are hit and work is to sufficient quality. It is important to organize regular briefings, status reviews as well as screen shares to review work. Keeping in regular contact will not only provide reassurance but will help to strengthen the relationship, paying dividends down the line.

Conclusively, utilizing the unwavering wonders of a Virtual Assistant effectively and proactively in the right manner, via the correct strategic online business management approach can bring innumerable dividends to your small business both in the short and long run of things.

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Omer Riaz October 28, 2018 0 Comments

What to Do When You’re About to Stockout

As an Amazon seller, one of the last things you want to experience is a stockout. After all, the consequences are dire. You risk losing sales, the Buy Box, and SEO rank and your account could be put on hold, or worse, suspended altogether. The result of all of this is lost revenue and slow to no growth while your competitors win all of your business.

Coming back from a stockout takes a lot of time and effort, but thankfully there are ways to prevent one. And even if your inventory levels are nearing zero, you can fulfill every last order so long as you’re prepared. With that, here are 5 things to do when you’re about to stockout:

Order More Inventory

Before you do anything, you need to order more inventory, keeping two important factors in mind: how much to order and when you’ll need it. If an order is already in the works, check the status of it so you know when you’ll actually have the product in-hand. Either way, don’t be surprised if you have to rush the order and, as a result, pay a rush fee.

Slow Your Own Sales

One way to prevent an Amazon stockout is to slow your own sales. While it may seem counterintuitive to inhibit the growth of your business, doing so is only temporary and will decrease your chances of experiencing a stockout (which is arguably more detrimental to your growth than a brief lull in sales).

The two most common ways to slow down sales are pausing promotions and changing the price.

  • Pausing promotions: Do you have an advertising or online marketing, either on Amazon, through your social media accounts, etc.? If so, stop running them until you’re back in stock.
  • Changing price: You may be flying through inventory because you offer the best price. Increasing it should help slow sales. Just don’t forget to readjust once you’ve replenished your stock.

Re-evaluate Your Inventory Management Strategy

Do you have an inventory management strategy? If so, you may need to re-evaluate it. If not, now is the time to put one together.

Your inventory management strategy factors in a variety of data points — such as your sales history and sales velocity — to determine how much inventory you should have on hand at a given time plus when and how much to re-order. You’ll also be able to set alerts so when you hit a certain point, you’ll be reminded to place a new order.

For help figuring out this information, check your inventory reports in Seller Central or consider using a third-party inventory management tool.

Invest in Buffer Stock

Buffer stock is an extra supply of inventory to use in case of emergencies — i.e. if an unexpected surge in sales is emptying your shelves, you’ll have enough “buffer” product to fulfill orders until you’re able to replenish your everyday supply.

So how big should your buffer stock order be? While some sellers opt for 10% of their typical order, some keep a stash of about ~500-1,000 units. Or, you can calculate how many units you sell in the time it takes your supplier to get you a new order. At the end of the day, it really depends on your budget and sales volume.

Increase Cash Flow

Thanks to Amazon’s two-week payment delay, it’s difficult to maintain a steady source of cash. But cash is vital in business, especially when you need to order inventory. To help you achieve reliable and daily access to cash, check out Payability, a financing company for marketplace sellers.

Payability offers two cash flow solutions depending on your needs. With their Instant Advance option, Payability buys a certain amount of your future receivables at a discount, giving you a large lump sum of cash. With Instant Access, they pay you your Amazon income one business day after making a sale; not only that, you could use their new Seller Card to access your funds even sooner.

Payability has helped thousands of marketplace sellers maximize cash flow, stay in stock, and grow their businesses. In fact, this Amazon seller uses Payability to buy more inventory and sell it faster. To see how you can use daily cash access to avoid a stockout, turn inventory more quickly, and grow your business, visit go.payability.com/Urtasker to learn more.

New Payability customers referred by Urtasker will receive a $250 sign-on bonus. Follow the Payability Facebook and Payability Twitter for the latest e-commerce updates. Let them help you during your business stockout.

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Omer Riaz October 24, 2018 0 Comments

How to Reduce Operational Costs of Your Ecommerce Business

Overview

Let’s be honest: we’re all in business to make money. A startup always has a question “What is the operational cost of business?”

E-commerce is one of the best and most effective ways to earn windfall returns on investment. The online platform offers the perfect tool to attract a great number of qualified leads. The digital arena is full of online marketing tools that can be harnessed to generate a large number of online leads. Social media advertising, search engine optimization, online forums, press release sites, and business directories are just some of the few online tools that can be used to funnel the maximum number of visitors to the site.

However, these tools and resources are just one of the many areas necessary to keep fueling your business machine. And you need more than one pair of hands for that!

The Challenge

With rising costs, it’s become more difficult for online e-commerce business owners to boost profits while keeping prices competitive. In this type of situation, it’s easy to focus on generating more revenue, but that’s only half of the profit equation – reducing costs is the other.

In fact, reducing the operational cost of business is the most critical aspect when it comes to maintaining a healthy, self-regulating and growing enterprise.

For e-commerce business owners, the overhead costs are little as compared to running a brick-and-mortar physical store. And the best part is that there are various ways that entrepreneurs can cut online eCommerce operational costs of business, thereby boosting online revenues.

Here are some critical tips to help reduce operational costs on your e-commerce business – consistently:

Hiring Virtual Assistants

Unquestionably virtual assistants are a great way to reduce operating costs for running your business. Why?

Well. Aren’t the operational costs of business one of the biggest things small business owners always worry about? Compared to a regular or full-time employee, a virtual assistant cost less because the business owner does not pay benefits.

A good virtual assistant can be the difference between a productive a non-productive small business. By outsourcing administrative and non-core tasks through a virtual assistant, small businesses free up their time to maximize business efforts – and results!

But the question is what traits you should be found in a VA that perfectly match with your business need? No hassle. Use some Pro Tips that you should keep in mind before hiring a VA.

Streamlining Supply Chain Management

Streamlining supply chain and distribution process is one of the best ways to reduce operational costs.

What does this mean? It means that incorporating supply chain management measures such Just in Time Inventory (stocking just the required products), integrated supply chain methods, vendor managed inventory are some of the ways online e-commerce companies can streamline their supply chain process and earn above-average return on investment.

Overseeing Routine Inventory Checks

Regular tallying of inventory helps in reducing eCommerce operational costs of business. Inventory counting allows firms to determine which products can be offered to the customers at a discount, and which products need to be replaced.

By combining accurate inventory count with sales trend software, eCommerce businesses can also find out sales patterns that will guide them in placing orders in the future.

Getting Rid of Excess Merchandise

Another great way to save eCommerce operational costs of business is to eliminate excess merchandise. Storing inventory takes up additional space that incurs costs. Eliminating excess merchandise can help in reducing storage costs.

Some of the ways that unwanted merchandise can be eliminated include offering the merchandise at a discounted price. Bundling the items together and offering to the physical brick and mortar seller. And donating excess inventory to charity thereby benefiting from a tax write off.

Moreover, Product Research is a must before that can never compromise at any cost, regardless of the current level of your business.

Conclusively, It may indeed be a mission and a half (translation: very difficult) to keep track of merchandise and inventory when you’re trying to run a business, grow and profit – as a business owner. Therefore outsourcing such tasks to a reputed Virtual Assistant Agency is critical.

The goal – for any serious e-commerce business owner – is always growing, flourishing, bolstering and scaling to newer, bigger heights. A business that doesn’t scale, is like a flower that never grows!

It is easy to scale up with virtual assistants managing aspects of your business, including the many we’ve discussed above.

And if you hire a virtual assistant from a different time zone, your business will be 24/7 online. As virtual assistants are skilled professionals, you will spend less/no time for training. Virtual assistants always reduce the operational cost of business and give you relief from long-hours shifting.

Moreover, Virtual Assistants hold no Legal ramifications or Human Resources regulations to abide by, contrary to when you physically hire an employee to work in-house. This means you can simply pay the VA or the VA agency as you go. You can end the contract at any time without any HR regulations or legal consequences to worry about.

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Omer Riaz October 22, 2018 0 Comments

How Amazon Sellers can Sell Successfully in Q4

Overview

As the saying goes in the world of business: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”.
Opportunity is the ‘biggest’ currency (even bigger than the actual revenue made) for any successful Amazon Seller worth their salt. Those that miss out on opportunities by not utilizing the ‘money’ of time, lose out on more in the short and long run of things.
Amazon’s coveted Prime Day came like a thunder and went away like the summer. This leaves Amazon Sellers focusing on 2018’s most vital quarter: Q4
Therefore, more than ever, a successful Amazon business in Q4 will need to leverage the power of Virtual Assistants to delegate work, enhance productivity and skyrocket profits!

Competing by Maximizing Opportunity

The Q4 holiday shopping rush is the open-season for driven and goal-oriented sellers.
This is because Black Friday and Cyber Monday hold strong potential every year for boosting sales and unparalleled revenues – IF the ‘opportunity’ is embraced the right way.
So how does one effectively and successfully competitive marketplace during the most competitive season of the year? Capitalize on the fourth quarter is difficult.

Luckily, there are tools and strategies you can use to do just that.

To make sure you’re prepared and ready for every growth opportunity Q4 has to offer, we’re sharing a few suggestions and tips:

Setting Up Reorder Alerts

Setting up reorder alerts will ensure that the supply is always up to date. This saves undue delay in fulfilling customer orders – particularly during a busy Q4 season.
In addition, you don’t have to refund amounts submitted by the customers due to being out of stock.
It is critical to stock up for high selling seasonal items in Q4; you need to be on top of the game and let your virtual assistant coordinate / oversee and regulate the stocking, merchandising and reorder alerts process.

It will save you a ton of time and enable you to focus on what matters the most for your business i.e. making money in Q4!

Harnessing the Power of Effective Marketing Channels

It often takes a lot of money to market your business online. Whether you’re using PPC, SEO, email, social media (or all of them) to promote your Amazon Product Pages, one of the best ways to save is using web analytics to identify which marketing channels are the most impactful.

To do so, use your web analytics tool to see where traffic is coming from and what visitors do once they get to your site.
For example, if you’re spending a lot on a specific PPC campaign, only to realize that traffic from this campaign never converts, you can use your marketing dollars more efficiently by removing or optimizing this effort. In other words, focus your marketing on what works and train your VAs for social media marketing.

Keep Updated on Future Pricing and Rankings

It is inevitable for sales to increase in Q4, but that shouldn’t be taken for granted because it means you need to stock up on even more inventory.

To ensure that this entire process is effective, smooth and hiccup-free, it is strongly advised that you check and adjust your prices regularly with the help of your Virtual Assistant.

When selecting items for stocking up on, evaluate meticulously as to how these items rank and what their prices entail for Q4.

Seasonable items by their very nature always bolster and hike in their respective prices and rankings during the holiday shopping mayhem!

Remember we talked about the power of embracing ‘opportunities’ earlier in the article above? Well. This is a great opportunity to buy inventory at a low price and sell high.

Moreover, keep in mind that it is critical to reevaluate and readjust your prices regularly throughout Q4. While your competitors stock out and the last-minute demand for holiday gifts rises, you may be able to enjoy higher profit margins.

Retain Current Customers

Acquiring a customer costs 7 times more than it does to keep one, which means you should focus on customer retention through quality customer service and customer communications.

This includes delivering on your promises and keeping customers interested in your business by sending emails and engaging them through social media.
As an added perk, as you build customer loyalty, these fans will begin sharing your business with their networks, which is the most affordable and effective way to drive new business to your store.

Switch to FBA and Polish Your Amazon Product Listings

It is human nature to wait until the last day before jumping on the ‘bandwagon’. Make use of this innate human tendency! Online consumers and shoppers love 2-day shipping, and some wait until last day to order.

To take full advantage of the holiday season, it is a good time for FBM sellers to switch from FBM to FBA. In fact, with its low barrier to entry, Amazon FBA is one of the most popular routes to business ownership.

Moreover, not only will 2-day shipping result in more paying customers, but it will also free up more of your time, so you can concentrate even more on scaling your Amazon business during the biggest quarter of the year Q4.

As for the Product Listing goes, keep in mind that your Amazon Listing is your digital face on the world-wide map! It is the gate to your revenue. If the gate is shut or doesn’t open properly, the money will not pour in!

To maximize the power of your product listing, ensure that the negative reviews or the complete lack of reviews are taken care of on your listing page. Both are equally lethal!

Consequentially, don’t be an ostrich by ignoring the problem. Ensure that you respond to all negative reviews and do what you can to get them removed – as soon as possible. The longer time they stay on your listing page, the more prospective buyers will visibly see them and be dissuaded by them! You can use tools to get higher rankings and more product reviews.

It is critical to use the highest, most potent, popularly searched and best keywords, with strong photos that are compliant with Amazon’s standards. It is imperative to also make sure that your product descriptions are accurate and up-to-date. This can help drive more sales and even prevent returns come January.

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Omer Riaz October 17, 2018 0 Comments