There’s no doubt that now is a great time to be an online seller. Just when people think the industry is saturated, more and more data comes out showing how much MORE online shopping has grown. The growth is still there too. With the growth, online sellers have been consistently increasing their sales. If there’s so much more potential out there, how do you know you’ve reached your limit? You should be able to take on more, grow for scale to see more sales.
You’re clearly selling items that shoppers want. There’s more like who’ve you already sold to out there and the potential is mammoth. That’s because more and more shoppers are beginning to trust and like the convenience of online shopping. It’s become easier too with the convenience of a couple of clicks and automation on mobile phones.
If you’ve been running your operations manually and feel like you’re not capturing enough sales, you’re at the right inflection point. Here’s how to determine that you’re ready for an eCommerce solution.
You’re ready for an eCommerce solution for inventory management when you are:
Running inventory off of Excel
Excel can do a lot and you did invest significant time and resources to build it to work for you. It may be helping you to track your inventory, sales and allow you to create reports, but there is room for human error. With anything from calculation errors to incorrect updates, managing operations from this tool prevents the ability to gain efficiencies. An eCommerce solution takes routine tasks and automates them. It runs calculations and provides a variety of reports quickly that will help you to analyze and make decisions. An eCommerce solution essentially takes your operations’ data and information, including mapping of warehouses and replicates it within the software. It also processes the data and aligns it across different channels within seconds. If you sell in multiple channels, the inventory can sell down in one and automatically, the new quantity available for sale is updated across all listings. Preventing stock outs, and meeting customer expectations. An eCommerce solution can also bulk upload listings and changes, reducing the amount of manual entry required.
Paying out overtime or hiring more staff
Hiring more staff to process more sales is a positive sign. However, hiring more staff or paying overtime to complete manual tasks cuts into your profit. It’s an added expense that you need to have the sales to cover it. It can seem like you’re in a chicken or the egg scenario when you need to hire the staff to build operations to get more sales, or you need more sales to hire the staff. Knowing the better scenario comes from taking a look at your efficiencies and expenses. If manually creating hundreds or thousands of listings is taking a lot of staff, then it’s time to explore eCommerce solutions that automate. Creating listings and populating all the information required is a lot of work. An eCommerce solution helps complete this task quicker so that your item gets launched and is available to be sold. You want to have your staff weighted towards picking orders and shipping them out. Mind you, you need the employees who will manage and work in other departments too.
Experiencing slow monthly sales growth
Undoubtedly, you are selling products that you know there should be demand for. You researched, you’ve seen what your competition does and you know deep down that there should be more sales. A lot of online business owners wait for the sales to come only to find out that they can’t keep up with before exploring an eCommerce solution. Starting with an eCommerce solution to help run your operations will help you generate more sales. That’s due to eCommerce solution not only being able to manage operations but have tools to increase your webstore sales. From professional templates and services, you can gain access to more tools for growth. You’re also not alone in this. An eCommerce solution will provide you with consultations from industry experts who have helped others and will share some tips and tricks that you didn’t have access to before. An eCommerce solution is your software business partner.
Have no spare time
As the owner of the company you have poured in relentless hours of your work and personal time to build this business. You need the work life balance as even small breaks help you re-centre and refocus. If you’re running multiple departments and double/triple checking things, it could be time to invest in an eCommerce solution to help you manage it all. With logins assigned to staff, you can track activities and trace any issues. Instead of manually creating reports, you click a preloaded one and within a few minutes you have all sorts of data at your fingertips. With these reports you’ll be able to build new strategies or modify them. On top of this, information that previously needed to be entered a few times in a few different locations is easily assigned with a click of a button. And you’ll have the time to get in some of the life balance you need.
Entering orders manually to print
It’s exciting when an order comes in, but it is also a rushed time to get that product packed and shipped as well as making sure the inventory spreadsheet is updated! An eCommerce solution coordinates so many activities automatically for you. Once an order is placed, it can automatically be printed for your warehouse staff to go and pick. The order will indicate the exact location in the warehouse that item is located because the eCommerce solution is mapped to your warehouse. The staff just need to pack it and apply the shipping label that was also printed. So much time is saved, this time can be allocated to processing the additional orders you can handle because you’re setting yourself up to scale.
Logging into multiple systems to run everything
More and more sellers are moving to multi-channel selling due to the volume of shoppers that are shopping on ebay and Amazon. You also have an additional source of sales in your store where there are no additional fees, but more profit. There are fees you need to pay to list and operate with leading marketplaces and different logins with different screens to be filled out. You also need to manage inventory within each of these channels. An eCommerce solution merges the marketplaces you sell in along with your own store so that it can all be done within one system. With inventory instantly synchronized across the channels, when an item sells down in one marketplace, the quantity available is updated across all channels. No need to update your spreadsheet as the eCommerce solution will update all your data. In addition, there are many reports you can pull that combines you marketplaces or separates them. From listings, to managing different channels to reports, to managing your staff, an eCommerce solution can provide it from a centralized location.
If you’re tackling a few of these issues, it may be time for you to take on an eCommerce solution for inventory management. You have nothing to lose by exploring it as you’ll be surprised of all the additional features you can benefit from.