Finding good products and marketing them successfully are what gets a business off the ground, but there’s a lot more to master to stay profitable in the long term.
As a business grows, a whole host of operational challenges emerge. The skills needed to handle them successfully are quite different to those that got the business started – disciplines like inventory management, efficiency and process improvement. They’re less exciting than sourcing and branding, but are absolutely essential to the healthy functioning of the business.
Here’s a roundup of articles from the Web Retailer blog focusing on the operational side of the ecommerce business. They provide a great primer on warehouse management, making use of data, repeatable processes, supply chain management, handling growth, inventory management and optimization, and systems thinking.
6 Challenges to Conquer Ecommerce Operational Efficiency as You Grow
Sam Moses of RetailOps looked at the challenges of warehouse and fulfillment management at scale. The problems can be huge – but not so big that they can’t be comfortably managed.
Build a positive work environment for your warehouse staff to help tackle shrinkage.
Exploit Your Ecommerce Data to Unlock New Business Growth
Data is make or break for ecommerce businesses. It can uncover problems, optimize current sales and guide you down new paths. In this post, Matthew Ferguson of Volo showed how to exploit your data.
He followed the data, not his own belief. He adapted based on what the data told him.
From Hobby to Business: The Magic of Repeatable Processes
Many sellers struggle with making the leap from hobby selling into building a legitimate business. This insightful post by Amazon seller Todd Ryan covered what he learned about ecommerce business processes in taking that path.
Most processes are repeatable – unless they involve divining rods or a sixth sense
Ecommerce Supply Chain Management: Reducing Cost and Inefficiency
A supply chain is the backbone of your retail or wholesale business whether you’re selling online, in stores or doing a little bit of both. In this article Crystal Gilliam and Joyce Lee of TradeGecko looked at six areas and how you can start to cut costs and streamline your supply chain.
Analyze your supply chain to see what’s working and what’s not.
How To Handle Rapid Growth in Your Ecommerce Business
Paul Watson of Volo addressed how to handle rapid growth of your ecommerce business. Many challenges arise as the business develops and scales – some of which can, if unchecked, threaten the very future of the business itself.
Every part of a business must mature and change to meet the challenges of scale.
Ecommerce Inventory Management: The Essential Guide
Vera Lim of TradeGecko looked at everything an ecommerce business needs to know about the science of inventory management, including forecasting, safety stock, reorder points and more.
Efficient inventory management plays a huge role in your business success.
Inventory Optimization: What Is It and Why Do You Need It?
Inventory optimization is the science of when to order stock, and how many units to buy, to make sure you have enough to keep up with orders while minimizing the amount lingering in the warehouse.
There’s a lot to be gained by working on the buying part of the business.
Systems Thinking for Online Sellers
Everything in your business is connected. That’s the essence of Systems Thinking – understanding how your business works as a whole. In this post I explained how to use Systems Thinking in your business to help uncover problems and find new opportunities.
If you want your business to grow, look for a way to create a reinforcing loop.
What else should we cover on this topic? I’d love to hear from you! Get in touch here.