Mastering your own web domain may not be enough
Let’s say you’ve mastered a particular selling channel and have found your groove. That’s a great spot to be in — you understand the channel, folks are finding your products organically, and your processes are efficient and lean. But what next? Do you expand your product line? Go niche?
Try multi-channel selling. If you’re using a marketplace, add a shopping cart. If a shopping cart, jump on a marketplace. There may be competition on Amazon and eBay, but frankly, it’s worth listing your products on there, especially if — in the case of Amazon — you also use Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) to ship those products out ASAP. With a shipping software like ShipStation, you can actually use FBA to fulfill orders from any of your selling channels. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. First, let’s look at why multi-channel is the right decision.
More Channels, More Orders, More Revenue
The more places you sell and advertise your product, the easier it is for someone to buy it, which means more orders. In late 2015, ShipStation took a look at the number of selling channels our users had connected and compared the amount of orders importing.
The numbers were staggering: users with 2 selling channels had over twice the orders as those users with just 1 channel. But once a user had 4 or more selling channels, they stood to have over 8 times as many orders. That means by just diving into Amazon and/or eBay, you’re exponentially increasing the odds of your product being seen and sold.
Sellers on Amazon tend to have more average orders than on any other channel. Stitch Labs reported on this in July of 2015. They found that e-commerce businesses selling only on Amazon tended to have 4 times as many orders as a retailer with a shopping cart or just eBay. The sheer exposure your products can get on Amazon — especially if you can afford to price it competitively — combined with FBA to handle those products makes Amazon an easy and smart first expansion.
Diversify Your Selling Channels
We touched on this, but if you tend to use only marketplaces (like eBay, Amazon, Rakuten, Etsy) or only shopping carts (like Big Cartel, Shopify, Bigcommerce, WooCommerce, Celery), you should have at least one of each. You stand to make 38% more revenue just by having 1 marketplace and 1 shopping cart. Add another marketplace to the mix (for a total of 2 marketplaces + 1 shopping cart) and you’re looking at 120% more revenue.
By diversifying your selling foundation, you can start planning targeted deals or coupons to your different channels’ customers. Maybe Product A goes on sale on Amazon, where it sells better, but on Etsy, Product C gets a discount. Flash sales and social media come into play here and can help turn unsuspecting browsers to customers, especially with marketplaces like Tanga that allow you to set up daily deals. You can drive traffic to one channel with the flash sale and social media 1-2 punch, exposing that selling channel to a new audience.
Cast that e-commerce net as far and wide as you can. Make sure existing customers know about your expansion and make sure you’re comfortable with the new selling channel. Finding the right fit is as important as adding a new channel.