Due to the coronavirus outbreak, the majority of the world is stuck at home. Aside from businesses deemed essential, nothing is open. Conferences have been cancelled and travel has been postponed. While it may feel like life is on hold indefinitely, business is still very much alive online. eCommerce businesses are in a unique position. Unlike millions of businesses that rely on foot traffic and in-person purchases, eCommerce stores are completely virtual. Therefore, you have the opportunity to not only continue to do business, but to grow your business during this time.
Needless to say, this moment in history isn’t without its challenges. Consumers everywhere face uncertainty like never before and supply chain disruptions are more rampant than ever. But, while you’re stuck at home, in quarantine, sheltering in place, or whatever you call it, you can use that time to connect with your business, your suppliers, and your customers in new ways. Here are a few ideas to inspire you:
Revamp Your Product Catalogue
Great products are at the heart of every successful eCommerce business. It’s the quality of your products that will get you the repeat business and positive reviews you want. While fast shipping and the overall customer experience are important, they won’t grow your business unless you have quality products consumers want.
Take some time to evaluate your products, what’s selling, what your margins are, and what you’d like to start selling. When you’ve taken a closer look at your products, you may have a better idea of which products may not be fit for you, which you can raise your margins on, and what inventory you’d like to try selling. Niche products can be very profitable as they stand out on marketplaces and eCommerce websites alike. A niche is a segment of a current market. Think CBD for dogs or organic beard oil. Look for a need that hasn’t been tapped into yet and find a product that solves a problem that has yet to be solved.
Try New Online Marketing Strategies
Staying at home may be boring at times. But, it also presents a ton of new opportunities when it comes to digital marketing. With millions of people stuck at home, you have a captive audience of potential new customers waiting to discover and interact with your brand or products. Now is the time to invest in digital marketing. If Facebook or Google ads are driving sales, it may be the time to invest more in them and test out new audiences and new creative while your audience is stuck at home. On Amazon, you may want to put more money behind the PPC strategies that are working and bidding on some new keywords to expand your audience.
There are also a ton of digital marketing opportunities outside of Facebook ads, Google ads, and Amazon PPC. As consumers remain glued to their screens and eager to consume new content to pass the time, you now have a prime opportunity to experiment with new outside the box channels and create new content. OpenSponsorship, for example, makes it easy and cost-effective for brands to work with athletes and other celebrities. Brands can join for free with no commitment and work with athletes for as little as $100. Getting your product feature on a relevant athlete’s Instagram or other social media pages can drive a ton of traffic to your listing and/or online store. While these campaigns work great for online stores, you don’t have to have an online store to benefit from OpenSponsorship. Many marketplace sellers use these services to point traffic to an Amazon or Walmart listing, for example, as a way to generate sales and traffic from outside the platform.
You can repurpose the content they produce on your social channels, Facebook ads, email campaigns, and more. So not only do you get access to an athlete’s social network, you also get new content you can use to promote your brand moving forward. With sporting events and entire seasons being cancelled or postponed, athletes are more available than ever to do social campaigns with brands like you. Get started here.
Video Conference Your Suppliers
While you can’t actually get face-to-face with really anyone right now, face time with your venders has never been more important. As supply chains become disrupted and some categories experience inventory scarcities, it’s your relationships with your suppliers and venders that are going to keep your business moving forward. If they find themselves in a situation where resources are scarce and they have to prioritize one vendor over another, chances are they are going to prioritize their biggest customers and the customers they have long standing relationships with.
Despite the current standard of social distancing, people are still craving human interaction both in business and their personal lives. Plus, you can get a lot more done and a lot more of your questions answered in a call than over email. If you’re unable to visit your warehouse, fulfillment center, or the factory that produces your goods in person, it’s great to set up a video call with your contact there so you can catch up, see where your inventory is being stored, and more. This is not only great for relationships, it can also give you peace of mind.
Optimize Your Store
Take some time to think about optimizations you can make to your online store or listings. Perhaps, you want to upgrade your photos, add product videos to your listings, redesign your homepage, add review functionality to your online store, set up coupons, etc. You can either use this time to make these changes yourself or to find an expert that can implement them for you. Carson is the leading flat-rate development/graphic design service for Shopify, a trusted development and design partner of over 15,000 Shopify stores and the highest-rated of over 800 officially vetted Shopify expert teams. Check out their task catalogue to get ideas of what they can do to customize and optimize your Shopify store.
Accelerate Your Cash Flow
If you have the opportunity to grow your business now, don’t wait until tomorrow. Things are changing faster than ever now. So it’s important to jump on every growth opportunity as soon as it’s available. After all, the product may not be in demand six months from now or tons more sellers may jump on the same product or niche when they also discover it’s a top seller. Knowing that hot products may not always be so hot and that competition is bound to follow your eCommerce success, it’s important to always have cash on hand to reinvest in inventory, marketing, and more.
You can finance your growth debt-free with Instant Access. Payability can get you paid the next-day, every day for your Amazon or marketplace sales if you’re selling on marketplaces that pay on terms. Getting your own money faster can significantly lower your risk and act as assurance that you don’t get stuck with an Amazon unavailable balance during this vital, yet uncertain time. Approval is based on account health and sales performance. So there are no credit checks and you can get up and running in 24 hours.
For Amazon and Shopify businesses looking for a lump sum of cash to put your growth plans in motion, you can get 75-150% of your monthly payout in 24 hours with an Instant Advance. As with Instant Access, there are no credit checks and the application process is fast. Sell on Shopify? Learn more about Instant Advance for Shopify.
Thanks to the virtual nature of eCommerce, businesses selling online continue to have opportunities to grow despite the national lockdown. These are just a few ways you can innovate and grow while you’re stuck in quarantine. Whether you’re working with athletes to market your products or redesigning your eCommerce store, take some time to focus on growth and reconnect with your business in new ways.