Tag Archives: Business

How to Carry Out an Annual Review of Your Chinese Suppliers

Identify key problems, work together on solutions, and grow your business together – or fire them!

This post is by Gary Huang, an American based in Shanghai, China. Gary has been working in sourcing since 2008, and is the creator of 80/20 Sourcing which teaches online sellers and small business importers how to save time and make more money when sourcing from suppliers in China.

When sourcing from suppliers abroad, oftentimes we are so bogged down in the day-to-day communications, fixing problems, placing orders, and handling all other parts of our business, we rarely take a chance to evaluate how the supplier is performing. One of the best ways is to do this is with a performance review.

Does the sound of that make your skin crawl? The thought of meeting with your boss and having him pick apart all the good and bad you’ve done all year. We hate that feeling when someone gives you negative feedback despite the fact it’s “for your own good”. The idea is that this way you recognize your weaknesses, and ideally identify ways to work together to improve upon them.

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Hiring Remote Workers for your Ecommerce Business: a Crash Course

This post is by Connor Gillivan, the Chief Content & Marketing Officer at FreeeUp.com and the Chief Executive Officer at online retailer Portlight LLC. Connor has been running ecommerce businesses since 2009 and has sold over $20 million worth of products. He writes about his own startup philosophies at ConnorGillivan.com and has been featured on many websites focused on entrepreneurship.

As we find ourselves at the start of another new year, it is more important than ever to make sure that you have the right team assembled. As an ecommerce entrepreneur who has been selling online for the past six years, I have witnessed firsthand what happens throughout all retail seasons, especially in the beginning of the year as customers are returning items and it is time to revamp your operations.

If you’re unprepared going into the first months of the year, you may find yourself in a place where your company is not ready to grow at the pace that you would like it to. The beginning of the year is the perfect time to re-evaluate your operations, create new goals, and communicate with your team to make sure that everyone is on the same page.

In this post, I will discuss the importance of having the right team in place for your ecommerce company. I will introduce the concept of a remote workforce and teach how you, as an ecommerce business owner, can hire remote workers to support the operations and growth of your business.

Whether this is your first time learning about remote hiring or if you have performed remote hiring in the past, this is a superb crash course to the best practices I have been using to run multiple ecommerce companies. If you have any questions about the details inside this guide, feel free to leave them in the comments and I will be glad to respond.

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Loans for Amazon and eBay Sellers: Your Questions Answered

Loans for Amazon and eBay Sellers

This post is by Radoslav Albrecht, the founder and CEO of Bitbond. Based in Berlin, Bitbond is a peer-to-peer lending platform that specializes in providing loans to online sellers and small businesses. The platform uses bitcoin as a payment network and is therefore available to everyone who has access to the internet. Previous to starting Bitbond, Radoslav was advising banks at Roland Berger Strategy Consultants and has worked for Deutsche Bank in London.

As a seller on eBay and Amazon you’ve doubtlessly thought about driving the growth of your online business. Whether its financing new inventory, hiring new staff, or keeping up with increasing demand, growing your business can be an expensive endeavor.

At Bitbond, we’ve helped finance 1,400 loans worth more than €740,000 to small businesses and online sellers. We operate globally, and often receive questions from international online sellers unsure whether a loan is the right choice for them. Our community is over 40,000 strong, but we recognize that many eBay and Amazon sellers still have doubts about growing their business with external financing.

Below, I have given detailed answers to the most commonly asked questions. We will cover all important aspects of financing for online sellers located in the US and abroad. With the information in this post, you will be able to decide if external financing is right for you, and what your next step should be.

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Private Labeling Is Dead. Long Live Private Labeling!

Private Labeling is Dead

This post is by Danny McMillan, a survivor of the music industry and serial startup entrepreneur. For the last couple of years Danny has focused on Amazon, and joined forces with Anthony Vaughan last year to co-host the The Amazon Seller Meetup events and Webinars.

As news broke yesterday it seems the internet has gone into meltdown. In case you’ve been hiding under a rock, yesterday Amazon banned incentivized reviews in the US (no UK announcement yet). These are the reviews written in return for giving products away (or at a heavy discount) and they have been the lifeblood for so many Amazon private label sellers.

At this precise moment in time no one truly knows how it will shake out. Sometimes stepping back and looking at the bigger picture and observing the lay of the land can produce dividends. We must remember getting reviews are only part of the equation and not the sole factor for success.

But if you are following the trend of, “product fits in a shoe box, pick it up for for cheap in China, stick a badge on it, do loads of giveaways, turn on PPC, collect cash on the way out”, then you are going to have it tough, especially if you are banking on high volumes.

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The Seller’s Journey: How to Be the Hero Your Business Needs

The Sellers Journey

This post is by Tim Calpin, CMO of multichannel retail platform ChannelApe. Prior to this he worked in brand and content for eBay Partner Network. He also spent several years working in the entertainment world – with credits including South Park and the Bruce Willis indie “Assassination of a High School President”. Tim is a graduate of Syracuse University, an avid writer and a raconteur.

Do you know who Joseph Campbell is?

He’s the foremost authority on journey and myth. Renowned storytellers like Spielberg and Scorsese are all about him.

Campbell believed all truly great stories were, in fact, the same story. He coined something called The Hero’s Journey, a narrative structure that embodies characters ranging from Jesus Christ to Luke Skywalker (as Luke should prove decidedly less controversial, we’ll use him as our example here).

The hero’s journey produces a character with integrity, worth and direction. If a seller can emulate this journey, they’ll create a business with the same characteristics – one that will naturally draw demand and generate a strong brand.

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