Pretty much everyone dreams of escaping the 9-5 treadmill and running their own business. And the Internet opens up opportunities to make money from the comfort of your own bedroom.
With eCommerce platforms such as Shopify, and opportunities open to anyone to sell on Amazon and eBay, launching your own business has never been easier.
Fundamentally, eCommerce is about selling products and shipping them to your customers. If you’re doing this on a regular basis, and turning a profit, then your business is a success.
But as anyone who has launched an eCommerce business knows, this is more tricky than it sounds.
Processing ecommerce orders is one of the most time consuming aspects of running an online business.
Let’s take a look at what’s involved in processing an order.
1. Taking Orders
Before you can process an order, you’ve first got to take the order. The more places you offer your products for sale, the more products you’ll sell. Good places to get started with eCommerce include:
If you’re branching out into eCommerce from a bricks-and-mortar business, you may also have sales to process from telephone orders and face-to-face sales.
2. Check Your Orders
Once you’ve taken your orders, you’ll need to check what’s been ordered. That means logging in to each site you’re selling on and checking the dashboard for sales. You’ll also need to note down data about the sale:
- What’s sold, so you can take it from your warehouse and package it up for shipping.
- The address of the buyer, so you send it to the right place, an put the correct level of postage on the parcel.
- The amount sold, so you can update your central inventory and properly manage your stock.
3. Print The Address Label
Next up is printing address labels and postage stamps. For this stage, you have to take the address data and weight information about the package, then log into the website of your chosen courier to enter the data. They’ll then print the address label for you.
4. Update Your Inventory
After printing the address label you can manually update your central product inventory. You’ll also need to log into all the sites you sell on to update stock levels. This is a time consuming process, but it’s got to be done.
Keeping track of inventory is vital to manage your stock levels properly. Too much stock hits your profit margins. Too little stock, and you’ll miss out on orders. What’s more, if customers place orders and then you discover you’re out of stock, you’ll end up with frustrated customers who’ll take their business elsewhere.
This can be different depending on which platform you use – so make sure to look more into Shopify inventory management, Magento inventory management and inventory management software for other specific platforms.
5. Picking & Dispatching Orders
The final step is to pick your product from your warehouse, package it up, attach the address label and postage and dispatch it.
Does it Need to be This Complicated?
When you’re selling on multiple sites online (as is the best idea to maximise sales), going from taking orders to dispatch is a complex process. It’s a bit like walking through an online maze, logging in and out of various sites to print postage labels and update your inventories.
Fortunately, it doesn’t need to be that difficult. Inventory management apps, such as Veeqo, condense steps 2-4, the most complicated part of the process, into one easy step.
Veeqo manages all your stock in one place. So if you receive an order from Amazon, Veeqo automatically updates stock levels in your eBay and Shopify stores. What’s more, Veeqo lets you print postage labels. With Veeqo, the steps look like this:
- Take Order
- Log into Veeqo to check orders and print postage labels (your inventory is automatically updated)
- Pick and dispatch your order.
Head over to Veeqo.com to start your free trial today.
Written by David Masters
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