If you’re tired of the rat race, starting your own business selling on Amazon is the way to go. Not only will you have no boss to answer to, but you’ll pretty much be in charge of everything. You’ll have command of your own schedule, no rush hour traffic to think about, and you can spend more time with the family. You can run it practically anywhere there’s an internet connection, and earn tons of profits.
What has made selling on Amazon so attractive to entrepreneurs is the number of potential customers you can reach. With the advent of the internet and social media, attracting more people has become easier online than for a brick-and-mortar store. And by leveraging the power of the gig economy, it gets even easier.
Outsource Early On
Outsourcing is by no means an easy decision. It requires careful planning and a ton of research before taking the plunge.
- Do you have the assets to hire additional help?
- Are you capable of managing freelancers and still get your CEO duties done?
- Which tasks will you be needing help with?
There are a lot of things to consider before making the decision to outsource. You don’t just wake up one day and decide that you want to because that will definitely not end up well.
Budget is a huge factor in making this decision. Things are going to be a lot easier naturally when you have money to pay people. If you have more than enough to sustain outsourcing, then there shouldn’t be any problem.
Another question you need to ask yourself is if you really need to hire. Being the business owner, it’s expected that you’ve done all the research you need to prepare you for this undertaking.
You should have a better idea of what inventory management is and how crucial it is to online selling. You should understand how critical a product listing is when it comes to sales or how proper product sourcing can make a difference.
While it’s obvious that selling on Amazon is not a one-man show, knowing which tasks to outsource will goes a long way. You want to fit everything in your budget so if there are tasks you can handle in the early stages, you’re better off doing it yourself for the meantime.
You can always come back to outsourcing as the business grows and expands.
This is probably the biggest question any entrepreneur needs to contend with. Yes, you’ll need all the help you can get but is there more to it than just getting additional assistance?
One of the reasons why online sellers outsource is because of expertise. Sure, you can do some of the basic stuff like customer service or order fulfillment but what about social media management? Do you have enough experience with SEO to pass up the opportunity of hiring an SEO specialist?
You have to take note that selling on Amazon is not just about getting items listed. People should also be aware of your products and be able to easily find them.
Every good leader knows that he or she needs someone better to help out. The good news is that the freelance market today is overflowing with talent. Freelance marketplaces like FreeeUp have such deep talent pools that it’s almost impossible not to get a specialist to perform some of the tasks you need help with.
It’s easy to see that outsourcing is essential for such businesses.
Which Tasks Should You Outsource?
Once you’ve made the decision to outsource, the only question you really need to answer is which tasks will you need help with.
Since you’re still in the early stages of the business, it’s natural for you to try to do everything on your own. This is especially true if you’re familiar with a few of the tasks like we said earlier. You’d want to save as much money as possible which is perfectly understandable.
Hiring a few people isn’t such a bad idea either. Not only will you be getting the best help for your business, but it will also give you more time to plan and come up with strategies to make your business more profitable. Imagine how beneficial it will be for your business when you can do your work as the CEO while freelancers take care of the tasks integral to operations.
Another reason to outsource is readiness for expansion. You know how crazy the internet can be. It only takes one awesome product to go viral for you to see your sales go through the roof. You’d want to have more hands on deck should that happen, wouldn’t you?
Come Up with a List
There are a lot of tasks involved in making selling on Amazon work. Just like when you’re buying a pair of shoes in the department store, there’s a process involved in making a sale.
- It all begins with how the shoes are displayed on the racks and how they caught your attention.
- A sales clerk will then check if there are available stocks in your size
- Once you’re satisfied with the item, you pay for it where the cashier confirms the sale.
- If for some reason you found damage on the shoes when you get home, you can then talk to the store’s customer service department so you can get them replaced or refunded.
There isn’t that much difference when you’re selling online. Just like the example given, you’ll also need people to perform similar tasks. You’ll need someone to make your products look good to attract attention. You’ll also be needing someone to process orders and address customer inquiries and concerns. The only real difference is that in the example above, you’re in a physical store. When you sell on Amazon, you’re using the online space.
With that being said, which tasks will be ideal for outsourcing? Below are some of them:
If your target audience is everyone around the world, you need someone to take care of your customers while you sleep. This is where having a customer service representative from a different timezone works. As much as you would like to be hands-on when it comes to addressing customer concerns, it’s just humanly impossible to be up 24/7.
Customer Service freelancers can assist you in addressing customer questions and complaints. They can also provide assistance in navigating your website, learning more about your products, and guiding customers with other requests like returns or refunds.
A customer service freelancer’s contribution is far more valuable than people give it credit because of the human factor. With years of experience dealing with customers from all over the world, they’d certainly be able to help you build relationships and obtain loyal customers.
When you’re in the business of selling something online, you can’t afford to be complacent. Just because a product sold like pancakes doesn’t mean it will remain hot for a long time. You need to always be on the lookout for your next “blockbuster” which is why product sourcing is essential.
With a freelance product sourcing specialist in the fold, you’ll be getting the services of someone who not only has the nose for a great product but also someone has the ability to communicate and negotiate.
This person would have the knowledge and experience to talk to various suppliers from other countries so you can get the best price for the quantity you desire. They would help you build relationships with these suppliers and develop agreements that will help your business grow and become more profitable in the long run.
Product Listing Optimization
You may have the best product ever invented but if the product listing is poor, it’s not going to sell as you want it to. From the images to the product descriptions, each of a product listing’s elements should do their respective functions for potential customers to take notice.
The good news is there are freelancers who can help you come up with product listings that not only attract attention but also sells.
Though there is always the possibility of getting all the skills you need in one person, you also have the option to hire separately.
There will always be freelancers who can help come up with great photographs, produce great titles and product descriptions, and craft eye-catching page designs that will make your products become more sellable.
The possibilities are endless but make no mistake about it, there’s a freelancer ready for each of the skills mentioned.
Marketing can cover a lot of things when it comes to selling on Amazon. Social media, graphic design, PPC, SEO, and email marketing are just some of the skills you’ll need to market your product and brand.
This is crucial because as good as your product is, it will be useless if no one sees or knows about it.
This is where you can use the help of several competent freelancers. You can have a freelancer help you draft a social media strategy, research, source, and create content, and keep your social media channels engaged.
You can also hire a graphic designer to help in content creation or and get a PPC specialist who can help promote your content to more people through Facebook Ads or Google Adwords among others.
There are also freelancers available who can help improve your searchability through Search Engine Optimization or get the help of an experienced email marketer who can help you get more leads and expand your email list.
Marketing is a huge investment but the returns on such investment can be all worth it with talented freelancers giving you a helping hand.
Selling on Amazon requires that you have just the right amount of stocks sitting in the warehouse. Get overstocked and you’ll be wasting a lot of money. Get short on a stock and your business will suffer from bad reviews.
Striking that balance is crucial yet difficult unless you possess the experience and skill of an able inventory manager, something the freelance marketplace has a lot to offer.
By keeping everything on record and closely monitoring stock availability, a freelance inventory manager will help you avoid embarrassment by making sure that you have available stocks to fulfill orders.
They also help you save money by ensuring that you only purchase the number of stocks you need so you can use the extra money on more important aspects of the business.
While many consider inventory management as boring and repetitive due to the amount of documentation it requires, we can’t deny the fact that it is integral to business success and profitability.
This makes hiring an inventory manager one of the best decisions you can make.
Order fulfillment may be clerical in nature but as simple as it may seem, this task is considered crucial in increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Can you imagine what your customer will feel if they receive the wrong product or if the product gets sent to the wrong address? Instances like these can negatively impact your business in a huge way which is why it requires focus and attention to detail.
By outsourcing this task to a freelancer, you’ll have someone who can ensure that all orders are processed correctly and on time especially when you’re faced with a large volume of orders.
If you want to earn your customers’ trust and help them stay loyal to your brand, hiring freelance order fulfillment specialists will definitely help.
Defining Your Budget
Like we said earlier, having a big enough budget is key when it comes to outsourcing. Though you won’t be paying overhead expenses like you would when hiring regular, in-office employees, freelancers still incur a cost.
Now that you’ve determined which tasks you’ll be outsourcing, it would be wise to identify the duties you’d want a freelancer to cover. This is important because most freelancers are paid for hours worked. You need to make sure that you have enough money in the bank to pay them based on the volume of tasks you would like them to cover.
If the hourly rate is a bit difficult for you to gauge, FreeeUp now supports fixed price payment. This would make it easier for you to set a budget aside if what you’re working with is a bit tight.
If you want to have peace of mind, finding out how long each task takes to complete will be in your best interest. By doing this, you’d be able to maximize your budget without worrying you’ll come up short.
Outsourcing Tasks via FreeeUp
Now that you’ve identified the tasks you’ll outsource and your budget is set, the only thing left to do is to hire freelancers. There are dozens (if not hundreds) of freelance marketplaces scattered all over the internet where you can find the right people. If you want value for your money without the hassles, FreeeUp is the best choice.
FreeeUp only allows the top 1% of freelancers to work through the platform. This means that whoever you’ll hire went through a stringent pre-vetting process. They went through a number of interviews to ensure that the people you’ll be introduced to are guaranteed top quality.
Another advantage of hiring through FreeeUp is that you don’t have to go through countless resumes and schedule several interviews because FreeeUp has already taken care of that. You just conduct a short interview with the top match to confirm if it’s the right fit. This goes a long way if you’ve got a busy schedule or if you have more important things to do.
So how exactly does hiring on FreeeUp work?
Here are the steps:
- Sign up as a client.
- Send FreeeUp your project requirements.
- Wait for FreeeUp to send you a candidate or two who match your requirements – usually within 24 hours.
- Schedule a short interview with the freelancer to see if they’re the right fit.
You can be working with a freelancer within 24 to 48 hours, all things considered.
Make Sure to Onboard Freelancers Properly
It goes without saying that your part doesn’t end as soon as you hire someone. For the relationship to work, make sure to properly onboard freelancers by setting expectations, work schedules, and other requirements you may have.
Give them a run through of how you do things and what you expect from them on a weekly and monthly basis. This will also be the perfect time to introduce them to tools or apps you use within the business. Take the time to provide them all the access they need to perform their functions.
Proper onboarding helps make things clear between both parties. It also gives you the opportunity to answer any questions they may have before you begin working together.
While it’s true that selling on Amazon is no walk in the park, there are ways to increase productivity and improve the quality of work within your business.
Outsourcing is one of those ways and if you play your cards right, it may just be THE best decision you’ll ever make in terms of running an online selling business.
If you’re still on the fence as to whether outsourcing is right for you, this blog post should give you everything you need to come up with a decision.
Get a pen and a paper and start making your task list. Be as specific as you can when it comes to the task you plan to outsource. Once your list is ready and you’ve evaluated your budget, take the first step towards outsourcing by signing up as a client and submitting a freelancer request.
Noel Rosos is a personal development writer, motivational speaker, entrepreneur and founder of Life’s How You Live It, a personal development blog dedicated to helping people live the life they’ve always dreamed of. He is also a writer/contributor for Arianna Huffington’s wellness site, Thrive Global. He is an affiliate marketer, a full-time husband and father, and a self-proclaimed FAILUROLOGIST.