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The Best Safety Tips for Running an E-Commerce Business

StrategyDriven Risk Management Article |E-Commerce|The Best Safety Tips for Running an E-Commerce BusinessAs a growing volume of retail transactions become ‘etail’ transactions, it’s becoming even more critical that your e-commerce business takes all necessary precautions to protect your business interests, your customers’ interests, and their data.

Here are some important safety tips you should bear in mind if you’re planning to launch an e-commerce business.

Online Security

Without a secure website, there is no e-commerce business that is safe. Not only does your website have to be user-friendly, attractive and built with shopping features for the user, it must be secure. If your website is ever hacked and your data is breached, this could mean a swift end for your business as consumers will no longer trust your brand when shopping online.

An e-commerce site should be hosted by a company who offer back-ups and are operational 24/7. Criminals don’t keep to office hours and neither should your web hosting service provider. A good web host will have maximum uptime and offer data protection and detection services that can quickly detect and fix malware or breaches.

Hypertext transfer protocol secure, or HTTPS, is the secure version of HTTP which is utilised for the secure movement of information on a network. Your e-commerce website should be hosted on HTTPS to avoid hackers gaining valuable information on your website.

Before you can move your website to HTTPS, you will need an SSL or Secure Sockets Layer certificate. SSL is security technology which encrypts links between a website and an internet browser. An SSL certificate can be purchased, installed, activated and updated on your website. SSL certificates do expire so ensure you renew the SSL before the expiration.

Avoid the Fraud

Unfortunately, credit card fraud on e-commerce sites is quite common. To avoid being the victim of credit card fraud, make use of AVS or Address Verification Services, which compares billing addresses supplied by the consumer to the address registered by the bank for that consumer. Add technology that can detect IP or Internet Protocol addresses which may seem bogus in relation to the shipping information as an added security process.

Privacy Concerns

Ensure you use secure payment gateway platforms on your site which releases security patches and provides shipping method extensions for better privacy. Doing this alone is not enough as consumers must be reminded to shop responsibly and safely. Reminders to consumers, preferably through an automated system, to use strong passwords and to change them monthly is a great way to help your consumers protect themselves too.

Never store sensitive financial information such as credit card details on your website. Hackers are particularly fond of gaining this data to commit online crimes with. To avoid this extremely serious data breach, employ the process of Tokenisation. Tokenisation identifies, removes and encrypts the sensitive information for you, such as credit card information, to prevent hackers from gaining access to this data.

Insurance for Your Delivery Service

A growing number of bricks-and-mortar businesses are launching ecommerce solutions, enabling customers to place an order through their website and then have the product couriered to their home or office. While this is a great way for offline businesses to compete in an increasingly online retail environment, it does mean you will need to take out courier insurance alongside your online safety precautions.

Courier insurance can be found through a comparison site like Quotezone.co.uk, and will protect your delivery vehicle as well as the goods that are being transported. There are greater risks attached to courier vehicles because of the potential value of the goods they are transporting, and therefore it is essential to be adequately covered when delivering or collecting goods.

Trademark

The final consideration to implement is the process of trademarking your company or brand name and logo. This will protect your website as well as your brand in the event of domain theft or duplication. Ensure your name and products are protected by trademarking them; often other companies will duplicate your entire site for profit and if you are not protected, you can lose your business. Ensure your copyright notice is clear and visible on your site and related documents.

Taking your business’s cybersecurity, insurance and brand name seriously will protect and safeguard your bottom line in the event of crime. Although the process of establishing an e-commerce website is relatively easy these days, the security and service you provide will set you apart from the competition and ensure your business thrives.

4 Proven Strategies to Boost Income from Amazon FBA

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Articles | Entrepreneur | 4 Proven Strategies to Boost Income from Amazon FBAAmazon FBA is an easy option for entrepreneurs who want to try their hand at e-commerce. You get to enjoy the benefits of running your own business while taking advantage of the conglomerate’s massive network and diverse customer base. Plus, Amazon also houses your stocks for you, so you don’t need to worry about renting a warehouse.

If you’re looking for ways to boost the income of your Amazon FBA business, here are some strategies you must consider:

1. Partner with a Reliable Forwarder

While Amazon may be responsible for storing your products on your behalf, you still need to send them to the retailer’s warehouses. This is where a trustworthy Amazon FBA forwarder and prep center comes in. If you bought goods overseas, a partner like FBABEE could streamline the sourcing and shipping process for you, including picking up the inventory, preparing and labeling the items, and shipping them directly to Amazon.

2. Focus on Fast-Moving Products

After you’ve created a smooth channel for your products to be sent to Amazon fulfillment centers, you should study your current sales and identify which products are popular with consumers. Concentrate on those particular items and eliminate the others from your catalogs. This way, you prevent the e-commerce giant from penalizing you with fees because of long-term storage.

These are the factors that determine highly sellable products:

  • Cost – Your initial capital per item should only be 25% to 35% of your target selling price. For a product that’s $50, find a supplier who can give it to you for $17.50 or less.
  • Price – Consumers are more likely to buy from you if your products are in the $10 to $50 price range.
  • Weight – The goods should weigh a total of around 2 to 3 lbs with the box and packaging so that you can save on shipping costs.
  • Strength – Your products should be sturdy enough to endure the delivery process without damage.
  • Consumable – Focus on selling products that your customers will use up or need to replace. These items should also be used throughout the year for better profitability.
  • Quality – Be sure to sell the items with the best quality so you have the upper hand in the marketplace.

Amazon provides its sellers with valuable tools and information such as the Best Sellers Rank (BSR) and Customer Reviews to identify which products consumers are buying. Do your research and compare prices with stores who sell the same products as you to check if you can improve on the cost of your merchandise to boost sales.

3. Regularly Review Amazon Fees

Examine your bill from Amazon regularly to check if there are any inaccurate charges by the site. There are different shipping fees for various package sizes, but there are times when an incorrect measurement can prompt Amazon to double your fees or provide you with variable shipping costs.

One way to solve this is to contact Amazon and have them remeasure the products. You can also ask for reimbursement for the error because you paid them extra for that particular mistake. Moreover, regularly check the size, weight, and description of your stock keeping units (SKUs) to prevent erroneous charges and increase the profit margin of your Internet-based business.

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Articles | Entrepreneur | 4 Proven Strategies to Boost Income from Amazon FBA4. Check Your Product Titles and Descriptions

Optimizing your product titles and descriptions for Amazon’s search engine will vastly improve your FBA business’ income. Aside from having a competitive price and improving your seller rating, you need to place relevant keywords on your product titles and descriptions so that your items come up first when a customer searches for it.

For example, if you’re selling sunglasses, it’s not enough to put your brand and the word “sunglasses” as a title. You need to think like your shoppers and determine the keywords that they will use when searching for sunglasses such as the color, shape, and lens type.

Some guidelines on how to get your title to rank well on Amazon:

  • Be as specific as possible within 100 to 200 characters for your product title.
  • Make the most of pipes (|) and dashes (-) to improve readability.
  • Place primary keywords at the beginning of the title.
  • Add compelling secondary keywords.
  • Highlight primary and secondary functions through keywords.

Conclusion

Amazon’s FBA business model provides sellers with cost-effective shipping rates as well as excellent support from their team of customer service representatives. This is the perfect setup for individuals who want to start and manage their business in the comfort of their homes. With the right strategies, you can ship your products to Amazon and send them to customers without leaving your personal space.

How to Launch an eCommerce Business

Among the business areas seeing the most success in recent years is eCommerce. People who own their own online store can specialize in anything from fashion to beauty, from health to home. For many, it is a dream come true, but that doesn’t mean it comes without its drawbacks. Starting an eCommerce business requires a lot of time and money, which many people don’t expect before they make the leap. However, it is not an impossible task to begin to see success in your venture, but you must have a great lunch to get you started on the right foot. To help you on your path to success, make sure you make a note of some important tips.

Make a business plan

Every business must have a thorough business plan written before they launch, and eCommerce is no exception. In this plan, you should detail your goals and expected profits in the years to come, as well as information on how you are funding your business endeavor. For many people, funding their eCommerce plans can be done through personal savings, but most need to apply for funding from a bank or seek it from alternative sources.

Don’t forget the paperwork

Owning an eCommerce business is not as easy as just selling a product. There is a lot of paperwork and practical information you must comply with if you are to keep your business legal. For example, adhering to trade finance is the key to success, but this can be a tricky topic to understand if you are not an expert. Thankfully, you can find the Trade Finance guide by TFG online to help.

Assess your market

Every eCommerce business owner must decide on a target market before they begin designing their store and perfecting products. Though some products can reach a universal audience, this is highly unlikely. Instead, you should conduct market research to see who your product will see the most sales with. Over the course of market research sessions and online research, an answer should begin to present itself.

Cover all marketing bases

Marketing cannot start properly until you know your target market inside and out. Only then can you start creating a marketing campaign for both your product and your brand. It is essential for your marketing to cover all bases, such as email marketing, social media marketing, content marketing, and even marketing over instant messenger. Doing this will allow you to promote product awareness over a larger group of people, which will in turn increase sales over time.

Use the right platform

Unfortunately, you can’t just use a simple website hosting platform to sell your products on. There are some platforms designed specifically for eCommerce, where they make it easy for you to design and run your own store, and there is a lot of information around on ecommerce trade. You should remember that the customer experience here is the most important part of choosing a platform. Most customers want a sleek, professional website, where they can see products clearly, and where the checkout process is quick and easy.

The New Economic Revolution

There’s a revolution in full swing that is changing the way ordinary Americans make a living. From internet commerce technology has sprung forth the Bottom-Up Economic Revolution. It’s dramatically altered the way business is conducted by both the seller and consumer. Front and center in this shift is platform businesses – small business cloud-based companies, online marketplaces and crowdfunding sites. They bring buyers and sellers, as well as non-profits and donors together in new ways to interact and do business.

Now the average Joe and Jane can create income, and in many cases a livelihood, with relative ease compared to the offline brick and mortar approach to business. Thanks to websites designed to bring sellers and buyers together in new ways, the possibilities are virtually endless. You can find homeowners in need of your maintenance services sell your own custom made clothing, rent a room on Airbnb, to name just a few opportunities. Need capital? Funding opportunities are also available and could be just a few clicks away at crowdfunding sites for the everyday entrepreneur.

This new group of self-employed individuals who are making part or all of their income online are fueling the Bottom-Up Economic Revolution like never before. As traditional employment opportunities continue to be in flux, these proprietors are increasing at a fast pace. The numbers tell it like it is:


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About the Author

Bill Clerico is CEO and co-founder of WePay, where he drives the company’s vision, strategy and growth. His goal is to make payments easy for the world’s small businesses and the platforms that serve them. Before founding WePay, Bill worked in technology investment banking at Jefferies & Company, where he advised enterprise software, digital media and financial technology companies on M&A and capital market transactions. In 2010, he was named one of Business Insider‘s Silicon Valley 100 and in 2011, as one of BusinessWeek’s 30 under 30 Best Tech Entrepreneurs.