If you are hiring for the first time for your Amazon business, list the most important tasks – the ones that eat up most of your time. From there, you can see what type of virtual assistant for Amazon you will need to hire first. Do you need someone with administrative skills? Or perhaps someone with a customer service background? You may even decide to hire two assistants assigned to different skills set for part-time positions.
Below are 39 tasks of an Amazon business that you may want to hire a virtual assistant for Amazon to take care of for you. The information here is not exhaustive, but certainly is detailed enough to help you understand what you would assign to a newly hired virtual assistant with Amazon experience.
Customer Service Specialist
You may need a VA specialized in customer service to help you send or reply to messages, emails, or reviews. This VA needs to be customer-oriented. That way, the onboarding will only be focused on those appropriate sections and tools in Seller Central. Here is a list of tasks that could be assigned to a customer service specialist:
1. Creating Message Templates
Teach the VA how to create message templates which he/she can simply copy and paste to the message system and send to customers.
2. Answering Questions Asked
Amazon is customer centered. It is important to reply to questions as soon as they arrive. The VA should be quick enough to answer such questions enthusiastically, professionally, and accurately. Hence, product knowledge is also crucial in this particular task.
3. Commenting On Positive Reviews
Commenting on positive reviews by thanking the customer for the kind comments is another area the VA could help with. At the same time, the VA could include a URL or link to another product in the review reply. This will drive internal traffic to your other product pages/listings.
4. Commenting On Negative Reviews
Negative reviews should never be taken for granted. If the VA has a good customer service background, it should be easy for him/her to compose a sincere, honest, and professional comment to address the negative feedback.
5. Matching Orders To Reviews
This process is crucial because it helps you identify customers who are not happy about the product. You need to personally send a message directly to the buyer’s email account, but this will take time. Thus, you need a VA to complete the process.
6. Replying To Positive Customer Feedback
One of the VA’s tasks is to keep and display positive customer feedback on your Amazon product listing then reply to each one of them immediately.
7. Dealing With Negative Customer Feedback
Negative customer feedback need to be removed because they are eyesores on you product listing. Again, this is one of the tasks that will eat up a lot of your time, so get a VA to do this for you.
8. Manually Shipping Out FBA Units
The VA should also learn how to send out units through Seller Central to customer in the standard Amazon fully tracked way.
9. Creating Removal Orders
At times, you may need to remove inventory from FBA for reasons such as removing unfulfillable units, moving inventory from FBA to a non-Amazon warehouse, or shipping out units to someone who does not really want them urgently. This process also needs time and attention so teach the VA to do this as well.
10. Locating Past Orders
A customer service VA can also be tasked to find details of past orders. This is useful if a customer wants to know if he/she can get a refund or a replacement for the product bought.
11. Confirming FBM Orders
Not confirming the orders means Amazon will not pay you for the order and this can greatly affect your seller central metrics. The VA has to be keen and careful in completing the process.
12. Cancelling FBM Orders
FBM orders can be cancelled when you do not have a stock. This is pretty easy to do but for good customer service purposes, the VA should also inform the customer ahead of time that the order cannot be fulfilled.
13. Refunding Orders
In some cases, the product may arrive defective making the customer really unhappy. The VA needs to know how to deal with refunds correctly as this could involve giving a partial refund as well as product replacement. You can also automate this accounting process in whole with a tool called Taxomate.
Unique, unprecedented content for your blogs, Amazon listing, ebook, or course may be the hallmark of an impressive brand. You need someone who is adept in writing a truly original copy that matches the language of your brand and can empathize with your target market. Some of the tasks of a content writer include:
1. Writing Content for Amazon Product Listings
You need a VA who has notable experience in content writing and has basic SEO knowledge. Writing a listing involves sub processes such as: keyword research wherein search volumes, BSR ranks, and number of reviews are researched and listed; researching negative review reasons; and identifying the product’s features and benefits.
2. Product Creation
If you are planning to create an online course or ebook, you need a content writer to produce excellent content for you.
3. Email Marketing Messages
A content writer should be creative enough to think of the best subject lines for email marketing messages to engage your subscribers. Creative subject lines increase email click through rates. Moreover, the content of the email has to be concise and should encourage an action from the recipients.
Sponsored Ads Optimizer
This type of VA should have at least a basic understanding of what sponsored ads are if you are going to hire someone new to do this for you. Keyword research skills is an obvious need here. Tasks of a sponsored ads optimizer include the following:
1. Setting Up A Campaign
The process can be daunting to someone who has not tried it yet, so it is essential to ask a potential hire whether he/she has tried setting up a campaign before using Seller Central tools. If not, you need to set up a VA properly to perfect this process.
2. Analyzing Campaigns
When you are running a campaign, Amazon will give you data with fine detail of what is going on with your campaign. You need the VA to analyse reports that contains everything you need to know about the campaign such as keywords, impressions, click through rate, cost per click, advertising cost of sale, total sales, etc. The VA will tell you whether or not there is a need to adjust the key terms to fine tune your campaign and squeeze more profit from them.
3. Setting Up Negative Key Terms
It is important to input negative key terms into your campaign to make sure that you are not paying for these terms. A sponsored ads VA needs to ensure that your product is not seen for certain key terms.
Search Engine Optimization Specialist
Yes, while we are maximizing on Amazon’s potential, Google search engine traffic creates a massive opportunity for online sellers like you. This type of VA should be able to understand how to play around with keywords to ensure visibility of your web site, product listings, social media posts, and blogs away from Amazon so that your products have a presence non dependent on Amazon.
1. Keyword Research and SEO Optimization
A SEO expert understands how imperative it is to use the most relevant keywords to drive traffic to your site.
2. Link Building
Hire someone who has extensive knowledge in Private Blog Networks (PBN) in relation to building safe links. This is essential for the growth of your site. You must invest on a professional to do this if you are not an expert yourself because Google may penalize your site if link building is not done safely.
3. Social Bookmarking
A SEO expert fully understands how to work with sites such as Reddit and Digg to bookmark your web page at social bookmarking sites. Social bookmarking sites are considered as quality backlinks so this should help optimize your site in search engines such as Google.
Social Media Manager
This type of VA is also assigned for your business’ online presence away from amazon. Your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn pages need to be updated from time to time. Your business needs to be always online to answer customer queries, complaints, suggestions, etc. While it is important for you to personally attend to the needs of your customers, you also need to do other things that are more important than updating a Facebook status, confirming/adding friends, uploading photos of new products, and the like. Get a VA dedicated to do these time-consuming tasks for you.
This VA will be assigned to find products to buy at a wholesale price and sell on Amazon. To make the process of researching products even simpler, you can use a variety of software.
The VA will negotiate with suppliers to secure the best deals that are profitable for your online business. Preferably, hire someone who has a background experience in the same field either online or offline. You may even want to look in China to find this type of VA. Here are some of the responsibilities of a product sourcer:
1. Product Research
A product sourcer must be adept in researching products that actually sell on Amazon by analyzing products from competing brands. This also requires knowledge in keyword research.
2. Negotiating With Suppliers
To negotiate the cost of the product with suppliers. It is important to pay attention to details here and a good common sense is needed because it can be difficult communicating with suppliers who are non English speakers such as Chinese, Indian, etc.
3. Securing Samples
A product sourcer secures samples for products that you are to sell on Amazon. This is subject to your approval, of course, so you need to work closely with this VA.
This is the type of VA who sends products to Amazon. You do not want your stocks to run out in your inventory so you have to assign a VA to monitor it. Here are the tasks of a fulfillment agent:
1. Sending In FBA Inventory
You need to go through a long process to send on a FBA inventory, so you will need a VA to do the task for you.
2. Downloading Amazon Barcodes For Each Unit
After creating a shipment, you may need to apply UPC labels or FNSKU barcodes. To do that, you need to download these barcodes for each unit. Again, this can be time consuming if you do it yourself. A fulfillment agent will make sure each unit has its own Amazon barcode.
3. Downloading A Shipping Label
Details such as return address, address of Amazon FBA, name of shipment, quantity, and how many cases are being sent in are found in a shipping label. The VA will make sure these are all present in the shipping label.
4. Tracking The Shipments
So you will know whether your shipments are along the delivery route.
5. Checking Units Received
To make sure that all units being sent have been accounted for. In case there are missing units, the VA will also send a request to Amazon to conduct an investigation so you will get a reimbursement for units that have not been accounted for.
6. Checking How Many Units Are In FBA
So you know when to send more goods to the FBA inventory.
Graphic Designer And Photographer
A graphic designer is someone who can make your company logo, featured images, site header images, and others. As much as possible, hire someone who has both photography and graphic designing skills. The graphic designer has an important role in terms of branding your online business. Listed here are some of the tasks of this type of VA:
1. Logo Designing
Invest in a professional who can create a timeless logo for your business – something that is of high quality, eye catching, and graphically attractive.
2. Listings Image
One of the most important areas of a listing is its images. Have the right person create the perfect images for you that fit within Amazon’s guidelines.
Great for communicating a complex data to target audiences. A graphic designer should have the skills to make infographics appear easy to understand.
4. Course Covers and Ebook Creation
Eventually, you may want to create an original content that relates to your niche. Ebooks need covers!
Web Designer And Web Developer
This type of VA can be assigned to create a website for presence away from Amazon so you can sell on your own website. As much as possible, hire a VA who can design and also develop your website. A Web designer is someone who can actually make your site look pleasing while a web developer is someone who can make the site work. Here are some of the tasks this type of VA could do:
1. Website Designing
Designing a website is typically done in an image editor such as Photoshop. A web designer should design every page of your website and make it look good. If you have a branding strategy, it should be used as reference.
2. Database Management
If your online database is not properly managed, you will experience site downtime and this will significantly hurt your online business. The Web Developer needs to manage all data on your servers regardless of how your site is being hosted. This VA should keep your site’s up-time going.
3. Site Optimization
You need a professional to optimize your site. This VA will keep your database clean and makes sure your site runs/functions quickly.
Bringing It All Together
That’s 39 different tasks that you may need to hire a virtual assistant to do. And it doesn’t stop there! You may be doing all of these tasks described above yourself – but if you want to grow your business, hire someone to take control of these functions. You can easily hire for all of these tasks through FreeeUp. And when you’ve freed up your time, you should also consider spending some time learning more about selling on Amazon. StartupBros is a great team experienced with Amazon. They are dedicated to helping more people sell more on Amazon. Check out their new beginner’s guide to starting your business.
Of course, there are many other business activities that you could hire for. The list is just far too long to document in one piece! The trick is to know what you want to hire for and have someone focus one that core area.
Many less experienced Amazon Sellers try to hire someone to do everything from customer service, to graphic design, to sourcing products. Yes, you may be doing that as this is your business that you care dearly for, however you will be hard pressed to find a VA who feels the same about your business. Therefore hire a specialist or hire to create a specialist for a certain activity.
This article was contributed by VACentral.co, a FreeeUp partner in the eCommerce space. VA Central is a company that helps you to set up your staff of virtual assistants for the Amazon Marketplace. After you hire well, you have to onboard well. VA Central has got that covered for your Seller Central onboarding. Their online material provides detailed and intensive information for Seller Central and Amazon tools, tasks, and processes. Download their 26 most useful questions to ask while hiring an Amazon FBA assistant.