The Future of Distribution Part II: Product Distribution in Emerging Markets

Jake Rheude asks if emerging markets will leap ahead of the developed world, and be the first to implement drone-base distribution networks

This post is by Jake Rheude, the Director of Business Development and Marketing for ecommerce fulfillment company Red Stag Fulfillment (RSF). When the owners of e-retail businesses could not find a high-quality fulfillment partner, the decision was made to build their own, and the result was Red Stag Fulfillment. This post was originally published on the RSF blog as The Future of Distribution Part II.

This is Part II of a series dealing with the Future of Distribution. Part I detailed the history of distribution and how the manufacturing, wholesale and retail segments developed, only to be supplanted with the integrated approach pioneered by online sales companies such as Amazon. Part II applies the same analysis and forecasting to emerging markets.

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Amazon PPC: Why are my Costs High and Sales Low?

Matthew Ferguson tackles Mike B’s question on Amazon Sponsored Products: poor performance and inactive campaigns

This is the first of a new series called Readers’ Questions, in partnership with Emanaged and Online Seller Consulting. Every week a seasoned ecommerce expert takes on one of your biggest business challenges. Kicking things off is Matthew Ferguson from Emanaged, and the question is on Amazon Sponsored Products PPC advertising. Have a question for us? Send it to questions@webretailer.com.

Question

I’ve been selling private label skin creams and treatments on Amazon for a few months. I am new to Amazon. I was a professional accountant in the past so the math doesn’t trouble me. I’ve been trying PPC ads but need help. My ROI is low and many of my campaigns are not performing. Advertising cost of sales [ACoS] seems high, but I don’t really know what to expect. I also don’t know why some are inactive for my own product?

— Mike B., from Ohio.

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Order Management, Shipping and Fulfillment Tools: the Essential Guide

Software and services for efficient order processing, economical shipping, warehouse management, and third-party logistics

A successful ecommerce business has a lot to do: research the market, source products, list onto marketplaces and so on – all before getting a single customer order.

When the orders do start coming in, you get the satisfying buzz of making a sale and all that effort finally seems worthwhile. You just have to send the orders out the door. Should be simple, right? Print off the details, pick the items, pack the boxes, add packing slips, stick on shipping labels, arrange for a pick-up (or drop them off)… and now it doesn’t seem so simple after all.

Many sellers quickly go from waiting for their next sale with a feeling of excitement, to waiting with a feeling of fear. Will they have enough stock? Will they apply the right labels to the right boxes? Will they even be able to ship on time?

So that’s the bad news: shipping is a messy, complex, demanding process. It can be a huge challenge, and has been the downfall of many sellers. The good news? It’s a challenge that businesses have faced before, and there are plenty of solutions out there for making it easier, faster, cheaper and more accurate.

In this post I’ll walk you through the Shipping & Fulfillment category of the Web Retailer directory. It covers order management, shipping automation, fulfillment outsourcing (third-party logistics), shipping consolidators, dropship automation and warehouse management.

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Quantum Networks Interview: It’s all About the Brands

From a tiny cube office in Manhattan to exclusive deals with huge brands, this company has come a long way

Quantum Networks has achieved a huge amount since they launched their ecommerce business in 2010.

The company, which started out selling niche electronics like cell phone signal boosters, has featured multiple times in the Inc. 500 list of the fastest-growing companies in the U.S., reaching $23 million in sales in 2013. They’ve continued to grow since then, selling on five global marketplaces while maintaining a 99% feedback average and shipping 14,000 orders per month.

Which business model have they followed to grow to that size? Well, most of them! Reselling, drop shipping, exclusive brand relationships, managed services, private labeling – they aren’t wedded to any one way of selling online.

But if there is one key to the way Quantum does ecommerce, it’s their focus on finding great brands to work with. They aren’t flipping quick deals or throwing out me-too private label products, Quantum is building long-term relationships with innovative, high-quality manufacturers. They now work with over 200 brands, and the emphasis on quality shows in an average order value of $157.

I caught up with Quantum Networks’ Co-Founder and COO Eytan Wiener, to find out more about this impressive company. He was very open about the business, and generous with his advice for new sellers.

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So, You Got Funded on Kickstarter – Now What?

How to leverage a Kickstarter campaign using Amazon Marketplace, Amazon Launchpad, email marketing and Facebook

This post is by online entrepreneur Ivelin Demirov. Ivelin has been selling full time on eBay and Amazon since 2008, and has successfully funded and delivered nine Kickstarter projects. He is also the founder of River Cleaner, a Chrome extension that enables sellers to automatically optimize Amazon product listings.

For most people who use Kickstarter, getting their idea funded is like reaching the mountaintop.

They hit their goal. Their idea can now become a reality. Life is good.

But the truth is, this is just the start.

Having had numerous Kickstarter projects, nine to be exact, I learned through trial and error how to grow them well beyond the confines of Kickstarter. I’ll cover exactly how to do that in this post.

Or if you create private label products to sell on Amazon, you’ll learn a different approach to product development that begins with Kickstarter instead, and is potentially much more profitable.

Then, I’ll show you how to bring your product to even more platforms and build an email list out of former customers that will make it easy to go back to them again and again for greater profits.

Let’s begin with one of the most important steps to creating a product: market research.

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