4 Questions Every eCommerce Business Should Plan to Address
Updated: Apr 28, 2021
Ecommerce sales were $5 trillion worldwide in 2021 (link). With the right strategy and execution, eCommerce retailers can achieve double-digit year-over-year growth. At Insight Que Solutions, we share deep expertise in end-to-end eCommerce solutions.
Recently one of our team members shared some insights on how to build a successful eCommerce business over an eCommerce podcast. The five questions that were discussed should every eCommerce business leaders consider when building their eCommerce business.
A synopsis of the podcast interview can be found below:
1. In a few sentences, tell us who you are and what you do.
I am an eCommerce marketing professional and marketing analytics thought leader. I have an active interest in eCommerce marketing and building strategic analytics around them. My industry experience is diverse; I have been fortunate to work with great organizations, teams, and professionals across multiple industries, including some of the fortune 500 companies. I have advised and build start-ups to help them grow from a strategy, marketing, and analytics perspective. 15 + years of industry, leadership, strategic implementation, project management, solutions development experience across multiple industry domains: Retail, E-Commerce, Marketing.
2. What’s the best thing about being in the eCommerce industry?
There are two aspects of this: a) personal developmental aspect b) professional and the business developmental aspect.
A) Personal Development
Personal aspect is the access to the state of the art technology, i.e., how to use the technology and how to build strategy with it to make sure that your eCommerce business thrives. I have been fortunate enough to start with the ecommerce industry at my early days. Compared to other industries such as Banking or finance, insurance eCommerce industry is much less regulated, which provides tremendous opportunity to adapt early technologies within eCommerce.
The second aspect about eCommerce industry is that it helps you to think about how to become an inventory manager. What I mean by that it can expose you to do a variety of items such as how to customer acquisition, how to do cross-selling, how to do up-selling, how can you do a better customer service, product marketing, pricing, supply chain, pricing, and profit management, etc.
eCommerce teaches you to think in the perspective of customers’ mindset. Ecommerce can help to teach us a deep appreciation for Brand Experience and Customer Experience. It makes you a better storyteller. It forces you to take a customer-centered view of the world, not only what customers say they’ll do, but to what they actually do.
B) Professional and Business Development
We need to understand that it always revolves around a digital brand and how brands compete with each other. The changes happen are extremely fast and of course you have to be very creative and adaptive. For example, how you can support the delivery quickly, how can you make sure that the shipping price and speed of delivery are aligned with the customers’ expectations? The year over year growth forecast is tremendous and it allows that you do lot of ideas tested in real time, with continuous monitoring with data and analytics.
Definitely ecommerce cheaper to operate compared to physical stores (a blessing) and can be accessed over internet from anywhere in the world. But having said that for ecommerce industry, it comes with nuances. For example, customers sometimes don’t know how to use the site, product values are not clear, navigations are not super accessible. Also, sometimes customers do not understand how your brand is more valuable compared to other brands available in the market (even though your brand/product is great). Even though there are challenges you can always work through these challenges and grow.
3. I hear from other people in the industry that you can hire cheap but you pay for it. Your thoughts?
Ans) There are two lines of thoughts here:
Steve Job often mentioned “You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in the future.” Doing it right from the beginning is definitely important, figuring it out, who is needed and do it accordingly and how can you build this in an appropriate manner is crucial. Does this mean that you have to go with the most expensive hire or do this everything today? Doing it everything at the same time may not be necessary. The caveat is also that expensive is not always good or cheaper is not always bad. However, doing it right from the beginning is very important. The other piece to this is that you build it over time with the right talents. Does this mean do you have to build everything today? Perhaps, no. The caveat is expensive is not always good and cheaper is not always bad. But you have to do this right and you build it up correctly.
4. What piece of advice do you want to share with ecommerce businesses?
There is a certain piece of advice I would add here from a multi dimensional perspective to build an ecommerce business.
o This means that your technology needs to align with customers’ expectation and you need to adapt as you are building your business. For example, if you are building an ecommerce system (website), you need to understand what is the right navigation? Can customers find the right products, is there an easy signup? Is there an easy navigation process when people are adding items to the cart? Are users deleting products after adding the cart or they are moving forward with the check out process? What are the drop-off rates. These are some of the technological aspects of it that needs to be defined clearly and build correctly.
o Building a strong brand. This is extremely important for the start-ups as they are competing with bigger giant such as Amazon or eBay. Building the brand comprehensively with proper logo, proper store name, having them accessible is important.
o You need to have a strong marketing program, build strong affiliate program and strong email program, etc.
o You need to have a great customer service. You need to have a reliable customer service, great customer reviews, etc. These are some of the building block that could help building your business
o Finally, you should be consistency because what you do on a day to day, e.g., having the right product with right promotion and customer service to meet the customers’ needs could help.
5. What other successful people in the ecommerce industry, like yourself, would you like to acknowledge that should be on my podcast?
a.) Nick Swinmurn, founder of Zappos;
b.) Chelsie lee, co founder of shipsi
6. For the final fun question, tell me the oldest technology you remember using?
And) I remember older days I used a program named dBase, another one MS_DOS (during windows 95 pre era)
The original podcast was hosted and broadcasted ecommerce Podcast at the Gretrix | The E-Commerce Business Podcast. We thank Gretrix CEO Jonathan Louis and his team for providing us the opportunity to share our views on eCommerce strategy, optimization and marketing. If you want to know more about ecommerce business or want actual copy of the interview, please reach us: firstname.lastname@example.org