Selling your products on various marketplaces like eBay, Amazon, Sears, Bonanza, Etsy etc is one of the hottest trends in the e-commerce industry. The fees of listing products on these marketplaces are little and only acquire additional charges in terms of commission when your product is actually sold.
So, not just for selling but circulating your brand among potential buyers can be achieved through the multi-channel sales marketing system.
Today, instead of highlighting on how you can set up multi-channel sales marketing system and what tools or web application you can use, we are going to focus on key issues that need to be taken care of, prior to setting up multi-channel sales marketing system.
In our next blog, we will describe the methods and apps available to establish multi-channel sales marketing system.
Most Common Things to Tackle Creating Such a System
Preparing Product Data Feed & Uploading Inventory
If you have sold anything on one of the marketplaces, you would probably know how tedious and time consuming it is to add new products to marketplaces and managing it.
Usually, you would need to create products data feed format of each marketplace and upload it as bulk listing or if you have only a few products to sell, you can do it manually and list one by one.
In both cases, you need to take care of unique SKUs and product identifiers used in inventory so you can preserve certain quantity for each marketplace according to the sale it generates.
So, before getting excited about listing your products on each and every possible marketplace, make sure you understand the efforts require managing inventory across all platform including your website.
Product Information & Listing Policy
Selling on marketplaces isn’t sweet as it sounds. Marketplaces like eBay and Amazon have strict rules and regulation and you must prepare product attributes like product title, description and product images on your own or unless you have a person who’s already selling on these marketplaces and providing you ready-made information which Is legal to use.
You must invest money in optimizing product title; preparing nice images and creating descriptive content that provides additional information about your products to buyers.
And most important is, the information you create must be unique and precise to describe the product else you would end up in shipping different products than it is described, resulting in negative customer feedback.
If you are selling products in which you have an advantage of great profit margin, selling on marketplaces may be a good choice as your profit will cover the price of listing products on these marketplaces.
Each platform charges initial listing fees which varies as per no. of products you want to sale, amount of goods you want to sell, your product niche and product quantity. Some platforms may offer you to subscribe the store which is monthly subscriptions and some will charge on an individual listing you create.
So, if you are selling products at very low-profit margin thinking you would outrage the competition, the end profit might be horrible for you and you may never try selling again on these marketplaces.
Before deciding a platform, make sure how much you would require paying for each platform according to your product niche and no. of products you want to list.
If you are a product manufacturer, state-level distributors or suppliers, it won’t be an issue for you but extremely important for small sellers who depend on very low-profit margin.
A good idea is to start with reputed platforms like eBay and Amazon and create some profit and regular cash flow from these platforms before listing products on more platforms.
Also, there are tools available in the market which would allow you to analyze the product trends on these marketplaces and you can actually have some statistics on the success of that particular product on these marketplaces.
Inventory, Shipping & Order Synchronization
Once you list products, you don’t want to manage orders and customer queries individually in each platform.
Each sale generated by different platform should be sent to your warehouse or supplier’s email with correct shipping information to ship to right customers.
Once the product is sold out, if you store real inventory, the product quantity should be reduced from central inventory system and other marketplaces so you don’t end up selling any product which is out of stock.
Instead of logging-in to manage orders of each marketplace individually, you need to develop a system that takes care of customer’s orders and shipping.
Furthermore, if you are drop shipping someone else products, first you need to place orders on your drop shipper’s website and then you can provide your customer’s shipping address to your drop shippers for shipping.
You need to find out a way to automate the entire operation as explained in below steps
- Taking Inventory updates from your drop shipper’s website
- Updating inventory and synchronizing it on all platforms
- Placing orders on your drop shipper’s website when product is sold
- Providing shipping information to your drop shipper’s once payment is confirmed by your customers
Also, you need to calculate the costing of your drop shipper’s services and other shipping charges so you don’t end up losing your profit in additional shipping cost applied by your drop shipper.
It is important to understand all aspects of managing central inventory system for multi-channel sales marketing system and above points pretty much cover the things you should account in your process for the same.
So, before you jump into the fancy world of e-commerce product marketing on various platforms, consider the efforts, time and money you need to invest for a successful store as a listing product isn’t objective but selling it on a price that is profitable to you is.
In our next blog, we will explain how to achieve maximum efficiency in setting up multi-channel sales marketing system for your business. Stay tuned to us and subscribe to our newsletter.