Become an E-commerce Consultant. Scam or Legit Long-Term Career?
In the fast-paced world of business and online opportunities, it is easy to get lost in the noise.
Competition, diverging avenues of income, the bombardment of non-stop advertising and rapidly evolving business landscape; are all factors that can make one feel overwhelmed as a freelancer looking to enter the realm of E-commerce services.
The online paradigm is not the same today as it said 10 years ago. Companies are increasingly going global with a large chunk of their operations, depending on online transactions.
Managing a small, medium, or large-sized business as an entrepreneur today is far more of a challenge than it was years prior; this is where the beauty and power of professional E-commerce Consultant services come into play.
Unfortunately, many people have had bad experiences with independent E-commerce Consultants on websites like saying Freelancer.com, Upwork.com, and even Fiverr.com as some of these independent freelancers lack the professional work ethic and industry-relevant skills that ensures quality work.
They are not regulated, as compared to a consultant working under a recognized agency would. An agency ensures that all its consultants are thoroughly trained, educated, professional, and skilled in every area of necessity.
Such mitigating factors are what set apart an E-commerce Consultant operating as a mere scam from qualified consultant working under a specialist agency of e-commerce consultant.
Here are a few of our personal tips on how to embrace a rewarding and truly lucrative career as a progressive and well-equipped E-commerce Consultant – both as an independent freelancer and as an agency employee – the right way!
Do Your Research
It’s crucial to do your in-depth research before deciding to begin as an E-commerce Consultant. What is the market like? Where is it headed? What are the industry trends? What are the patterns of evolving? What kind of demand exists in various niches and categories? What resonates the most with you in terms of your comfort-level and skillset? Where do you see yourself excelling the most?
The power of the internet is a beautiful thing. It allows you to research ideas at the mere tip of your fingers.
Read up articles, blogs, watch videos and online podcasts, go to your local library and look up books on the subject of E-commerce Consultant Services; join online discussion forums and partake in various communities.
Prospect the Right Customers
Not prospecting the right customers (those who will pay for your services) is like walking shooting darts in a dark room! Knowing what prospective clients will be ‘ideal’ for your services, expertise, and niche of interest; is as essential as the real work you’ll do for them as an E-commerce Consultant.
Not all clients are ‘created equal’; hence, it’s crucial to do your research in understanding, scouting, scoping, and evaluating the ideal avatar or customer demographic for what you have to offer.
A great way is to study companies, entrepreneurs, and small businesses on LinkedIn, various business forums on Facebook and other social media, prospecting at trade shows, seminars, and conferences, etc.
You can’t be a great consultant if you don’t understand your client’s competition.
The highest most successful companies in the world like Coca Cola, Walmart, Apple, and Caterpillar – all spend millions every year in merely research and development. And that includes evaluating + continually evolving with their competitors in the market.
Knowing your strengths and weakness and identifying that of your competitions is a great asset and the strongest of weaponry you can possess as a professional and highly dynamic E-commerce Consultant.
Read up books, articles, online journals, and, most importantly; the official websites of each competitor to get an in-depth understanding of it all. Locations, business models, industry trends, and patterns, these are all important parameters to evaluate when it comes to knowing your competition.
Staying ahead of the competition gives you and your clients the edge that no amount of money can buy!
Freelancers VS Company – Where to Start?
There’s no concrete answer to this, as it depends on your comfort level and preference. However, ideally, the best way to start is via a company.
Being associated with a recognized and professional e-commerce agency allows you to polish your skills; gain the necessary organizational, problem-solving, analytical, communications, technological, and strategic knowledge to prosper as a consultant in a controlled, regulated, and highly dynamic professional environment.
A company will invest in your training and self-development and treat you like an irreplaceable asset because of it. Knowledge is power, and working + learning, while you go, is excellent leverage to have as someone just starting.
Growing as an E-commerce Consultant
A great way to grow is through constant marketing your services via social media and various online + offline channels. Classified sections on newspapers, magazines, websites, local community bulletin boards, paid Facebook advertising, reaching out to prospective clients and professionals on LinkedIn, and so forth.
Networking plays a crucial role in growth as an E-commerce Consultant in the competitive and cut-throat online arena today. As the saying goes, “It’s not what you know; it’s who you know.”
Self-investing in yourself through reading books, learning on new industry trends; adapting to the latest consultant challenges, and refining yourself as a professional are all elements of pristine professionalism that will make you stand out from the rest and attract clients in hiring you.
Touseef Riaz is a technology analyst and provides optimal technology solutions for retail, e-commerce, and health care sectors. He also helps small to midsize e-commerce businesses and brands build a successful online marketplace strategy via technology.