How to Scale Your eCommerce Business
Is scalability part of your eCommerce business plan?
If you’re new to eCommerce, your biggest concern is getting off the ground. But it’s never too early to plan for growth. Opportunities may come much faster than you think.
For too many retailers, scaling is about keeping up. Their natural success ends up working against them. Losing control can even hurt existing progress.
Even large companies get caught off-guard. This can cause billions of dollars in setbacks when approaching emerging markets.
You may not have billions at stake. But the stakes are still high on a personal level. You can take steps to ensure your growth leads to success.
Don’t miss out on future growth. Here’s how you can capture a greater share of the market by fitting scaling into your business plan.
What Does It Mean to be Scalable?
Scalability is the agility with which your company can handle growth. In the past, scalability depended on your ability to add to internal resources right away. Most businesses now use third parties to these ends.
That’s because third parties are ready to grow services for your company as needed. Their key line of business is providing you with the tools you need.
Some third-party resources include fulfillment, customer service, and website optimization, among others.
There are internal contributors to scalability as well. You must prepare your brand strategy for new markets. You must be ready to improve internal efficiencies.
Your sudden growth needn’t catch you off-guard. Prepare yourself for growth in your eCommerce business plan.
Why Should Scalability be Part of My eCommerce Business Plan?
It’s never too early to start preparing for growth. That’s because it can happen at a moment’s notice. Handle it well and it can drive long-term success.
Scalability should have a special section in your business plan. Having a growth strategy is another stepping stone toward success. It will give you peace of mind as your business grows as well.
7 Ways to Scale for eCommerce Success
There have never been more tools available for the growth of your business. Take a look at the market for business services. You can build growth support into every aspect of your business.
You must include them as part of your eCommerce business plan. The following seven strategies will prepare you for growth success.
1. Increase Operational Efficiencies
Business growth depends on operational performance. Building on inefficiencies only ingrains the problems.
You’ll need to evaluate efficiencies on a regular basis. Include this in your original business plan. This should be part of regular operations.
You will need to include operational improvements in your growth strategy as well. Establish with your teams what their requirements will be during a growth scenario.
Then, identify the most efficient solutions. Many of these will be scalable third-party services. Make sure you always have the enablement of your teams in mind.
Some efficiency factors to consider during growth periods are:
- Marketing capabilities
- IT infrastructure and support
- Customer service capacity
- Training initiatives
Growth means change. The needs of your teams will change as well. Put a procurement measure in place to support them.
2. Improve Your eCommerce Website
Website optimization and scaling will be part of your growth. You should have measures in place for these needs in your eCommerce business plan.
You should be prepared to optimize your website for new markets and new products. There are online tools available to your team to do this themselves.
Scaling out your website is a huge effort. You can scale out your website with the help of a third party. Visit this site for opportunities to improve the business value of your website.
3. Develop a Scalable Marketing Strategy
Marketing is the vehicle for all growth. Your growth will not continue if your message doesn’t penetrate new markets.
Entrepreneur says, “A deep understanding of inbound marketing best practices is vital to the growth and success of your business. No matter how busy you are, you simply can’t ignore the importance of marketing your brand effectively.”
Include specific growth guidelines in your business plan. You can leverage third parties for resources and capabilities, including:
- Creative execution
- Artworking and design
- Digital services (e.g. ad buying)
4. Increase Customer Service Capacity
You will turn off new customers with poor customer service. Many companies outsource customer service capabilities. Integrating those services increases scalability while driving down costs.
Scaling customer service must still be a part of your eCommerce business plan. You will need specific standards to communicate to third parties. You will need plans for training them on best practices as well.
5. Use Third-Party Fulfillment Options
Fulfillment is an ongoing challenge for all retailers. You’re in business to sell, not manage a warehouse.
Third parties offer the benefits of a professionally managed warehouse with the scalability you need for growth. They save you from a lot of headaches as well.
A fulfillment strategy should be part of your eCommerce business plan. If you’re still packaging at your own kitchen table, you’ll need one the second your business takes off.
6. Choose Scalable Supplier and Manufacturing Agreements
Who is making and supplying your products? Are they ready for your sudden growth?
Ensure you plan in advance for greater inventory needs. Your eCommerce business plan should include criteria for scalability with these companies.
You should explore contingencies if you need to bring on more manufacturers or suppliers as well. This aspect of your plan should focus on continuity under all circumstances.
7. Track Your Progress and Improve
You should establish criteria for success in your eCommerce business plan. You need to determine your KPIs for managing your growth.
Growth will bring opportunities and challenges. Don’t let either go unnoticed.
You’re bound to fail in some areas and succeed in others. During your growth, failures are learning opportunities. Be sure you have the best tools for measuring and learning from them to increase value as your growth continues.
Transform Your eCommerce Website Today
Want to add website services to your eCommerce business plan? Ready to start transforming your website today? Contact Site Report Card for resources and training that drive business success.