It can be difficult to manage one platform. It can get complicated when you add other platforms to your business, such as WooCommerce, Amazon, Etsy, or eBay. These four principles are key to simplifying store management across multiple channels. Keeping these principles in mind will allow you to stay organized, efficient, profitable, and profitable.
Reduce unnecessary costs and perform tasks
You might need to add new services or engage additional agencies to support platform-specific needs. Or order large quantities of products when growing your brand through sales channels. You should consider ways to reduce costs as growth usually means an increase in expenses before you see a return on your investment.
These are some things you can do that will reduce the strain on your cash flow.
Products that aren’t selling well, or with the lowest profitability, should be retired
You can save time and money by getting rid of underperforming stocks. You can save time and money by reviewing your sales reports. Find items that aren’t very profitable and get rid of them.
Sometimes a product might be a failure on one channel but a success on the other. You don’t have to remove the item completely from your business. Instead, move it to the place where it is selling best. This will free up space in your warehouse and other shops, and it will also allow you to curate your store content to reflect the most profitable and popular items.
Reduce low-performing advertising campaigns and channels
It is more difficult to track marketing campaigns and ad campaigns the more stores you have. For your WooCommerce store, you might use Google Ads, Facebook, and Instagram. You may also run ads on Amazon, eBay, and Etsy for products that are on these platforms.
You should monitor your campaigns and remove any ads that don’t meet your cost-per-acquisition benchmarks. You can drop a channel if it isn’t performing consistently and instead focus on the ones that perform best.
Consolidate or terminate contracted services
You may end up paying for services that your business no longer needs or may have to use redundant service providers. This can not only drain your cash but also requires more coordination. You might consider hiring an agency with enough staff to handle everything. Or perhaps you should hire a few part-time employees.
Look at your records and create reports about expenditures. You can keep track of how much time you spend communicating and collaborating with contractors if you use a time-tracking app. You can compare your expenses and the time you spend in each area, as well as the capabilities of the agencies and contractors you work with. Then, prioritize consolidation according to your goals. You might make different decisions if time savings is your top priority than if you are trying to save money or increase services.
Automate your workflow
Your most valuable resource is time. While you can make more money and make more products, it is not possible to make more time. You will spend more time managing the platforms that you sell on. While some tasks can be done manually, automation is a good option whenever practical.
Sync with your accounting program
This is the first thing to do if you don’t use accounting software. You have many options but Quickbooks or Xero may be the best. QuickBooks sync for WooCommerce and Xero Extension are the best options to connect your WooCommerce store. You can sync products, orders, payments, inventory, and even your payment gateway fees.
One of the best things about some of the most popular accounting systems is their integrations with other eCommerce software or marketplaces. QuickBooks, for example, has an integration with Amazon, eBay, and Walmart.
Sync inventory across all channels
Sellbrite is a one-stop solution for managing product listings and inventory tracking between WooCommerce and other channels. Sellbrite can connect your stores to sync inventory and current products. Sellbrite allows you to create new products and upload them to your shops in bulk. You can add up to 100 products to Sellbrite at once.
WooCommerce allows you to import affiliate products directly into your WooCommerce store
Integrating integrations such as Amazon Product Importer and Affiliate can help you make it easier to set up affiliate products.
It is possible to automatically import product data, such as:
- Name of the product
- Customer reviews
Simplify product fulfillment
ShipStation can integrate with all major marketplaces, allowing you to provide consistent fulfillment across all sales channels. The ShipStation Integration extension allows you to connect your WooCommerce store with ShipStation. This cross-channel order fulfillment software allows you to automatically tag orders with special identifiers such as ‘fragile’ or ‘needs insuring’. Your warehouse will be able to pack and ship your order. Split shipments can be automated, bulk-print shipping labels, and customers can receive SMS messages with tracking updates.
Automated sales tax calculation and payment
Sales tax is not a joke. Although it’s complex, every merchant who sells physical or digital goods must pay sales tax in all US states (but not all), if they meet the nexus requirements. A tax professional can help you navigate the sales tax laws in your region if you are unsure.
When you are involved in multiple channels, things get a little more complicated because you must consider all sales when calculating your tax requirements.
Tools such as TaxJar and Avalara can help you simplify sales tax management. These services can calculate the sales tax rates for your store based on your quarterly sales volume. They can also file and send payment to the states for you. They’ll even automatically combine sales figures across all platforms so you have a complete picture.
Connect to third-party apps
You want to automate a part of your workflow using software that doesn’t already have integrations. Third-party connectors like Zapier are available to automate tasks between WooCommerce stores and other sales channels. The WooCommerce Zapier Integration extension allows you to create complex workflows with if-then statements, and connect with more than 3,000 cloud apps.
Give projects to the most qualified people
You may feel comfortable managing your bookkeeping, marketing calendar, customer service, and logistics, especially if your business is small. You’ll find yourself increasingly stretched as your business expands across more sales channels. This is why you will need to delegate some of your work to another provider. You should think about delegating the following:
Even if your sales channels are connected with accounting software, it’s still necessary to reconcile transactions and prepare tax returns. Bookkeeping is a common task that store owners hate. Outsourcing this task to professionals will ensure that the job is done properly and you can focus on other aspects of your business.
Sales tax management
The operational details of your company change with the tax laws. Perhaps you have an employee who is now based in a different state than you had previously. What’s the best part? Now you have a sales-tax nexus. These changes can be difficult to notice, so it is a good idea to have a professional sales tax review your accounts each year to ensure you are complying with current laws.
Other specialized work
All specialties include web development, copywriting, photography, and graphic design. These are all specialized fields that you should not attempt if you don’t have the experience or time. These projects can be outsourced to professionals to improve their quality and allow you to concentrate on your areas of expertise.
A freelancer may be the best fit for you if you don’t need a lot of work in a particular area but you still have to manage it on your own. You may also need to hire someone if you have deadlines that are tight and daily projects that can take between 20-40 hours per week.
Communicate clearly and openly with your customers
Although you may love to interact with customers, it takes time. If communication is not clear, customers will become bored of you answering the same questions every day.
Be proactive by anticipating customer questions and communicating clearly. Customers will be happier and you’ll have less time.
Create a brand identity guide
No matter where the customer is buying, they should be able to trust that your company will sell genuine products. A brand identity guide will ensure that your company and your team use consistent design and copywriting across all channels. The guide should include information about your company’s colors, logos, imagery, voice, and fonts. It also explains how these elements can be used in different contexts.
Refer to reference guides to determine file dimensions, size limits, layout requirements, and restricted content for your different sales channels. Any additional branding requirements specific to each platform should be included. Clear expectations and rules will help you save time and money, while your brand remains consistent and easily identifiable.
As much as possible, direct customer service to one source.
It doesn’t matter if you are fulfilling your orders yourself, using Fulfillment By Amazon, or contracting with another third-party logistics provider (3PL), it is important to direct your customer to one source for all questions. These are some things you can do to get customers back to your WooCommerce website for customer service regardless of where they purchased their product.
- Add a customer satisfaction card to your product packaging. Encourage customers to leave reviews on your website and to reach out to your customer support team.
- Your WooCommerce store can now have an FAQ page and a knowledge base. Customers can refer to the FAQ page on your WooCommerce website to find answers to their questions in product guides, customer receipts, and social media channels. This allows you to avoid having to update FAQs at multiple locations and ensures that your customers have the most current information.
- Connect all channels of customer inquiry to your CRM. Customers will reach out via avenues that aren’t convenient for them. Your WooCommerce website, social media accounts, and email accounts, as well as your phone number, can be connected to your CRM. All your customer service needs can be managed from one place, regardless of where they originate.
Your team should work efficiently together
Any business that is growing will be governed by its team. Your team is the closest thing to being cloned (entrepreneurs’ dreams). It’s worth investing in the right tools to equip them. While processes and training are important, it is also important to be open to their feedback and learn from them as they grow.
These are some tips for making the most of your team.
Software productivity helps you manage your projects
Software that helps you stay productive is available in many different formats. It can be hard to choose the right tool for you and your team. However, it is important to have a system that organizes your tasks and projects in one place. It will make it easier for everyone to use their time efficiently, and provide you with high-level information about the time spent by employees and areas where you can improve.
You don’t have to buy a productivity tool immediately. Instead, you can explore some alternatives that offer forever-free accounts such as Asana and Trello. Clickup, Wrike, and Wrike.
Time-tracking software is available
Clockify allows you to see where your team is spending their time the most and tracks staff and contractor hours. The cloud-based time tracking application offers both a free and a paid tier depending on how many features you need. Quickbooks and Clockify can be connected to make timesheets payroll-ready.
Listen to your team
Listen to your team. Listen to your team and get feedback on any changes you might make to improve the management of multichannel businesses. Consider their expertise and how they might help you to increase revenue or decrease operational pain points. You may find yourself overwhelmed with great ideas. Organize your thoughts and decide which suggestions you should implement first.
Growing pains are worth it
You’ll see more opportunities as you open your WooCommerce store up to other sales channels. While this will bring additional work, it will also be a good thing to find ways to delegate, automate, communicate, and eliminate. Preparation is key to executing efficiently when it’s right.