The proper eCommerce tools are important for every online store if they are to keep up with their competitors. These researchers tried to provide a mathematical method to help retailers choose the best tool for their online trade, according to the various functions and flexibility these allow. In their conclusion, they write that the best platforms are those that offer the most flexibility. However, they conclude that as with all business tools, personal factors are impossible to introduce into a mathematical model.
Therefore, the right tools for eCommerce retailers wanting to have a competitive advantage are those that best suit the business needs and those that offer plenty of flexibility for developing additional functions.
Besides choosing between Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce, or any of the numerous eCommerce platforms available to them, here are the other top 5 essential eCommerce tools required.
Virtual Address Benefits
A virtual address is among the top tools required by a business, according to a trusted resource. Having a physical address without having to go to the expense of hiring a permanent office space is one of the important benefits of a virtual office. Anyone looking for a Wyoming virtual office, Wyoming Trust & LLC Attorney provides several solutions.
Besides a steady address for receiving correspondence and packages, a virtual address offers far more to any eCommerce business. The prohibitive nature of P.O. Boxes do not allow couriers or the postal service to deliver parcels to them, something that a virtual physical address allows. If the online retailer is an LLC, a physical virtual address is ideal for receiving official documents. This address is also used for the LLC formation and its banking accounts.
Most small business and eCommerce owners work from home or in a location nearby. However, they need to separate their professional affairs from their personal ones. A virtual address is the best way to separate the two. Whether the online store owner is in the same city as the virtual address or not, it still allows them to maintain a level of privacy since the company just needs to share its virtual address on registration forms and online.
Saving Time and Money
Renting an office space often leads to unwanted expenses for unnecessary services. With virtual office space, a company can pay for just the services they need, whether it’s a whole office, a meeting room, call service, or an address for mail.
The same applies to the services of employed office staff. Even employing just a receptionist entails paying a salary and benefits, something that is often too expensive for a growing e-store. With a virtual address, business owners and their employees have access to their calls, mail, and other services.
Virtual office spaces allow the business to always keep the same address, even if the company is run from various locations. This ensures communications are always stable for associates, clients, and suppliers. After social media, a call-service is the next most important thing for any business, even eCommerce. People want to know that they can directly contact a company if needed. Call forwarding and special automated answering are important for customers. These services offer convenience and an improved business image.
A virtual address allows a business to have a fixed address, no matter how many times it may move. This enhances productivity because it removes the need to waste any time on changing the address on official documents and sending out notices to everyone else.
Improved Perception and Credibility
The perception of a company’s credibility often relies on its business address. A virtual address can enhance the credibility of a business with no fixed address, especially if it is at a well-known business location. For a fraction of the price of renting at an expensive address, a business can have a virtual address to include in all communications.
The vendor used by a business to manage the backend of accepting payments is the payment processor. As customers pay, this processes their card data to complete the transaction. Every online business requires a payment processor since no hard cash is exchanged during transactions.
These payment processors need to provide secure credit card processing, and some also include point-of-sale systems and hardware. Third-party payment providers allow safe and easy online transactions. Currently PayPal, Stripe, and Square are some of the most popular used today. These are easily integrated into the infrastructure of most eCommerce platforms.
Just like brick-and-mortar businesses, inventory is an important area to watch in an online store. Every business owner needs to ensure products are restocked when sold, and returns must be monitored. Inventory management software allows the syncing that makes an eCommerce store easier to run. Depending on the software, it can ensure customers are notified if something is out of stock, allows backorders, and can sync all selling channels for more flexibility.
Customer Tracking and Relationship Management Tools
Customer satisfaction is vital to a successful online business. Thankfully, there are some excellent customer relationship management (CRM) tools to support these efforts. These tools help a business engage with customers via all means, including live chat, social media, emails, text messages, and calls. Some tools can also help track the customer experience, offering online retailers the competitive edge required today.
Social Media Planning and Management
There are several aspects to good social media planning and management. Besides scheduling and posting things in a timely fashion, the business owner must keep customers engaged in an omnichannel approach.
The right social media management tool allows all social channels to be managed from one platform while also responding to messages. Social media automation and an easy-to-use interface are also important.
The aspects to consider when choosing business tools are costs versus benefits, what tools offer the best solutions according to peer reviews, and their scalability to avoid being penalized if the business needs to upgrade or downgrade.
Any eCommerce business not already incorporating all the above tools, including a virtual address, should consider their benefits. They help to save time and money while ensuring the business is run more efficiently.