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How to scale an ecommerce business

By Anna Metcalfe | 29 Jan, 2016

Setting up an online business is really very straight forward – and easy. That’s great news for many businesses surely. But the challenge is no longer in setting the business up. The big issue is how to scale an ecommerce business and grow the turnover, sustainably and over time. Not so easy.

Whilst smaller businesses might choose to go it alone in their efforts to scale their online business, others will certainly benefit from harnessing the skills of specialist businesses to help build traffic, optimise the functionality of the website and of course, build conversion.

What’s the formula for growth?

However you choose to scale your ecommerce business, appreciate that it is far from straight forward and there is not a proven formula, even for the largest of organisations. There are however, some key areas to consider carefully and we highlight these here for you.

Cash flow matters

Running out of cash is the biggest killer for small businesses, so get serious about your cash flow and manage it in every way that you can – whether small or large.

Be timely

Pontificators have little place in running an ecommerce business! Everything moves so quickly, you need to get on with it or watch your competitors reap the rewards of your tardiness.

Have the right skills

Within your financial limits, invest in the right skills and knowledge to develop your ecommerce business – you cannot be expected to know everything so stop pretending to. Bring in the skills and enjoy a teamwork approach to scale an ecommerce business.

Manage your costs

You might be able to grow your business “at any cost” in the short run, but this attitude will not reward you with sustainable growth – it will present you with a bankrupt business! Manage your costs carefully from the outset and learn where to spend to make the most difference.

Marketing creativity

Don’t you just love those clever little ideas that some companies come up with? Get serious with your marketing and you might identify some too. Marketing needs to be creative and tuned into your specific business, so ensure that you have the expertise to achieve this.

Don’t be complacent

You might feel that you have identified a niche that is all yours. Don’t expect it to last. Ecommerce races along at a rate of knots and so you’ll soon welcome competition if your idea is a good one. Expect this and get ahead of the game whilst you can. 

Learn every day

Regularly make time to learn and build your knowledge. Learn what your competitors are doing, learn about new ecommerce opportunities, learn more about the leading names in ecommerce, learn new skills that will help you to scale your business. Every piece of new knowledge can become part of your journey in creating a sustainable program to scale an ecommerce business.

Anna Metcalfe
About Anna Metcalfe

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