What is eCommerce, and can it be a profitable business?

Let’s face it; we want our wallets and bank accounts filled as we venture into the things we love doing. Are you planning to start a business? Do you plan to make it big as a supplier? Find out the basics here.

Table of Contents

What is eCommerce?
What Is a Supplier?
Benefits of Supplier Relationship Management
What Are the Benefits of Operating Online?
How Do Online Operations Go?
How Can I Build My Online Brand?
How to Expand My Business Online?
To Sum It All Up

What is eCommerce?
eCommerce is a business of buying and selling, but the transactions are all done online. The beauty of eCommerce is that you can make money while you sleep! Doesn’t that sound great? It’s one of the few businesses in the world where you can start doing part-time and eventually build it into a full-time business.

Since everything is done online, it is possible to make it a nice side racket while you have a full-time job. If you can find a reliable and good supplier for products, you’re on your way to the first step of making a successful eCommerce business!

What Is a Supplier?

Usually a company, but it may also be an individual or small business – a supplier provides services or products to another business at lower costs per wholesale unit. Suppliers receive products or raw materials from manufacturers and offer these materials at an affordable price to a retailer, distributor, small business, or corporate entity. When you work closely with a supplier, you’ll receive a good set amount and price for the orders you make for your business. Besides lower costs per unit, you will also enjoy direct transactions because there will no longer be a need to pay for middlemen who raise the prices a notch. 

Benefits of Supplier Relations Management
  • Collaborations and Partnerships

    You might think, “what’s so important about building partnerships and forging collaborations?” In case you haven’t noticed, in the business world, when you build partnerships, you build a network of connections. With one connection, you’ll move forward to building another one. Then the rest is history! So, when you can, it would be advisable to collaborate and form partnerships with those you deem trustworthy enough for your business to partner with. Opportunities knock on your door from time to time, but it’s also vital to determine whether or not you should let these knocking opportunities in. Keep the goals of your business at the center, have these goals be the deciding factors on why or why not you should partner or collaborate with a particular company to broaden the horizons of your business.
  • Innovation

    Working with direct suppliers is the dynamo of operating a business. Besides the impact you make by receiving raw materials and products through a straight channel line, your business’ growth is highly guaranteed. How? Simply put, when you work with direct suppliers, you receive the best products from the source, creating and building your business as you increase customer satisfaction. And with excellent customer satisfaction, you’ll carry out your business with bags of smiles and orders, be it products or services you sell. Even if you’re a starter, you’ll eventually find yourself among the rosters of high-rollers in the industry.
  • Speedy Transactions

    It goes like this Manufacturer – Supplier – You; sometimes, it’s even the manufacturer is the supplier, then you. On this two or three-way stream, you’ll already notice how short the distance is from all parties involved. Working with direct suppliers allows your operations to work at a faster pace. There’ll be no need to work with countless middlemen, couriers, and other unnecessary tag-along. Working with direct suppliers for your business fosters a smoother transaction where you communicate directly with the company you are working with. This way, you’ll also avoid the hassle-filled and stressful streaks of working with multiple people. 
  • Reduced Costs

    Even the wealthiest people in the world have spoken about using vouchers or buying at a discount – all because they want to curve their expenses. That’s how these billionaires get even more affluent, and we drop our jaw and fathom how. Working closely with direct suppliers, customize how your orders go. You get what you want at a rate happily agreed upon by both parties. You’re happy with the materials you receive from your supplier, and you’re even happier to receive them at a price that did not go beyond the budget. When you work with direct suppliers, you’ll never have to go under because of countless costs, fees, and the never-ending cycle of inflation here and there. Communicate what you would like to receive as you work together around a deal that will leave both of you delighted

What Are the Benefits of Operating Online?

If you’ve started your business already, or you’re planning to build one, consider working directly with a supplier online. Instead of looking here and there to conduct a trial and error in finding the right supplier for you, the strategy you can work on is negotiating with a credible supplier through an eCommerce platform that filters the best suppliers for your business-to-business endeavors. Besides the foolproof design of this system, you can also vouch for its benefits on your part. Here are some of the perks you ought to know…

  1. Secure and Encrypted Transactions

When you work on your supplier transactions online, say through an eCommerce platform such as Shoppable, you’ll know that you’re conducting your business transactions securely. Websites like Shoppable are encrypted to ensure maximum security. One of the first things you need to ensure is security, so instead of paddling on unsafe waters, venture into something confident and tested.

  1. Direct Communication with Suppliers

Imagine having to communicate with countless people for a single transaction. You’ll grow fine lines on your cheeks and forehead. Instead of losing your mind as you converse with the countless people you’d have to work with when getting your supplies, speak to your supplier directly. Skip the long line and small-talk conversations of “sales talk” from all these people working on commission; that wouldn’t be the most optimal decision you’ll be making for your business. 

  1. Monitored Shipping

Sometimes our orders become compromised and damaged because of courier mishandling, but luckily, with eCommerce platforms like Shoppable, you wouldn’t have to worry about that anymore. Each route for shipping is monitored and handled securely. You don’t have to make a fuss about delays, damaged items, or lost packages either because you’ll be given a guarantee in case you experience any inconvenience with your orders. Each order of yours is protected with secure monitoring by the in-house team of the eCommerce platform. You will also receive updates and can track where your orders are through the application or website. 

  1. Filtered Searches

As a consumer, you can quickly look up the products you need through the eCommerce platform.  With the platform’s user-friendly interface, you may search for what you need on the search bar and immediately be directed to the supplier companies that bring you the products you need. The same goes for supplier companies; you will be directed to the clients who belong to your target market. These filtered searches will narrow your options with just one click. If you would like to search among a pool of suppliers, too, then you may do so and change up the settings with no hassle.

  1. Wide Variety of Options

Platforms like Shoppable have client users who supply raw materials from products to services and users looking to purchase these goods. The sea of users on the platform is vast and diverse, yet despite the population of users, it is still easy for consumers and brands to be directed to each other. With countless varieties of options, you may order everything you need for your business in one place. You wouldn’t need to scout for suppliers for one product and look for another supplier for a different product or service in your business. Say you’re looking for a textile supplier for your apparel product and another supplier for wooden furniture, all of these you can find within the platform – no need for you to go elsewhere. 

  1. Credibility Verified

One of the best characteristics of using an eCommerce platform to find your suppliers and vice versa is the credibility feature of the platform. You are confident that the brands you will work with are curated and verifiedno scammers! Unlike other platforms that welcome anyone, eCommerce platforms like Shoppable have manually selected brands that are thoroughly examined and verified before they are allowed to bring their brand online. This process ensures the safety and quality of products and services offered to clients

Above are just a few cited benefits you will experience when you operate your sales online. You can finally reach your target market, transact with payments, and operate your sales without frustration and hassle. For beginner small business owners and startup companies, working on your brand online will also ease the tension of looking for an effective and secure avenue to showcase your products and services. For consumers, it’s a piece of cake because the platform curates all its users and brings what you need directly to your screen, where you can browse and complete each transaction. One eCommerce platform you can operate your business is Shoppable. It features all the tools and requirements sellers need to easily communicate with their customers and create their listings and shipment. Shoppable also offers one of the safest transaction services, as it is encrypted and has a brand registry program. You can check out their website here

How Do Online Operations Go?

We can’t speak for other brands, specifically for Shoppable; it’s just a 3-way stream. For supplier companies who would like to sell their products and services using the platform, the assigned team from Shoppable will be tasked to verify the authenticity of each product and services an applicant brand would like to sell and will then have the requirements approved. This process is designed to ensure the safety of sellers and buyers on the platform. Only authentic and credible brands will make it through the roster of applicants selling their products and services on the platform. 

Applicant brands who would like to participate as sellers will have to create a page where clients can browse through the products and services they offer. Once all these steps have been accomplished, they may begin transacting with their respective clients. For the security of both parties, each transaction is encrypted with high security to avoid fraudulent incidents. Using advanced technology for online protection, users and sellers are tasked to verify their identities before using the platform. This guarantees that the person purchasing or selling is indeed the same in the profile. Companies may also jump in and verify their corporate identity through verification. Security measures in the platform have raised a notch because users and sellers deserve the best service and quality of products

On the other hand, users will create their profiles and verify their identities during the process. Once the user has completed the verification process, they may use the search engine or the category tab to look up the products or services they want to purchase. Once they add the items they like to their cart, whether there are multiple items from different shops, they may continue with a single purchase using the platform. Payments are made using a secure channel that connects your selected payment method to the respective bank partner. 

The platform also boasts 24/7 customer service that will not have you wait for hours in line. When you have a concern, a customer service representative may respond to your questions and concerns in no time. Say you would like to update your email address; the assigned customer service representative will guide you thoroughly through updating your email address. With seven billion people across the globe and millions of people in the Philippines, you would have an idea of how difficult and time consumer customer service could get. The ballpark is that there would be countless concerns and inquiries about all sorts of things in customer service. Most are related to your business, products, and services, while some are unrelated. This is why it is vital to have a set of trained staff or third-party personnel to address the concerns and questions of the people inquiring about and reaching out to customer service.  

Luckily for the eCommerce platform Shoppable, you can access customer service 24/7. No waiting lines, no need to wait for an eternity of promised working days, and other reminders; for Shoppable, when you need to ask something, you can communicate with the on-page personnel that will respond to your queries. Be it matters of accounts, transactions, shipment, or password reset, feel free to contact the Shoppable support lines, and they’ll be happy to help!

Why Join Shoppable

Earlier, we mentioned the new face in town – Shoppable. And since it’s a startup eCommerce company, we still have to hear who and what Shoppable is. What do they specialize in, and why should we join one of the country’s newest innovative eCommerce startup companies – Shoppable.

  • It’s Free –  It’s free to start selling on the Shoppable platform. As long as you’re a legally registered business, you’ll be able to list products for free on Shoppable. You only pay a commission if an item sells on the platform, and you get paid. 
  • Expand your Customer Base – Through Shoppable, you’ll reach thousands of new customers for free. Think of Shoppable as your marketing arm that you only pay when you have a sale. 
  • Get your eCommerce Store – Increase sales by digitalizing your product catalog and reaching customers worldwide. Print catalogs are dying, costly, and not environment friendly – digital is the future. Sellers can get their eCommerce store on Shoppable Business which can be given to any client. 
  • Procurement Technology – Enable your customers to pay you online through Bank Transfers, Credit Cards, Over-the-Counter Payments, Recurring Payments, and more. Easily track and manage orders, payments, and shipping through the Shoppable platform. 
  • Shipping Technology – Shoppable has integrated directly with multiple shipping couriers, enabling you to provide same-day to next-day delivery to your customers. 
  • Compliance – Sales invoices and 2307’s required? Don’t worry; Shoppable has got you covered! The platform keeps sellers fully compliant, never worrying about missing documents. 
  • 3PL & Fulfilment Services – Need additional manpower? Shoppable can provide you with warehousing and fulfillment solutions to expand your brand to different locations enabling you to get products delivered faster to your customers. 
  • Real Sellers, Real Buyers, and Real Products only – We vet and interview sellers that join the platform, so you will be assured that all of the products and transactions are authentic and legitimate. 
How Can I Build My Online Brand?
First, what is a brand?

A brand is the entirety of the company you are building. A brand comprises your logo, website design, branding colors, vision, mission, company goals, community feel, assets, and the products and services you offer. A brand is the whole of your company’s identity. How you design your branding will contribute to how your clients perceive your company. For example, the well-known brand Apple is seen as a social-status symbol for its users. It is also known as one of the leading gadget brands on a global scale. The brand is so influential that people from different economic statuses flock to their stores each time they release a new product. 

How can you create good branding?
  • Be on the go with your brand identity.

    Be innovative with your branding ideas. Work towards building your branding from the ground up. Feel free to explore different ideas and themes and have these pegs revolve around your company’s goals and ideals. Ask yourself hard-hitting questions and place yourself in the shoes of your clients. After you spend some time fawning over your entire branding, take some time to look at what you have created with your team from a bird’s eye view. Does your branding represent your company’s vision, mission, identity, and community? Make sure that it does!
  • Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box.

    There are a lot of ruckuses about branding colors, fonts, themes, and some blueprint ideas a lot of other people share. There’s no harm in creating your branding according to the population; however, if you think about the downside of this, you would look like everybody else. You should place yourself in the comfort of being unique and unconventional. It’s okay to think out of the box and create your branding according to how you would like it to be. If everybody’s picking the color orange, go with a different color, like pink! If everyone’s using comic sans, then use a different font like Arial. Don’t shrink your potential within a box. 
  • Embrace creativity.

    Explore different ways your business can expand; it could be anything! Say unconventional blogging, commercials, or creating merchandise that advocates for environmental sustainability. Be not afraid of how great your business may grow, be afraid of not taking a chance at growing. When you’ve finally grasped how your market functions and changes, you can begin creating works that spark your market’s attention. You can gather more inspiration from platforms like Pinterest or Behance. 

How to Expand My Business Online?

While there are countless ways you can explore to grow your online business, one proven and tested method will get you up to speed. It’s called eCommerce! Operating your business through an eCommerce platform will narrow your client list by leading you closer to your target market. There are also advertisements you can use on eCommerce platforms that will attract more interest in your online business. Expanding your business may be difficult at first because you will find yourself competing with large-scale brands and longtime established companies. However, despite this, know that there is nothing to fear because you, too, have your equal share in creating a good brand that the people in the market will come to love.  

Operating online has its fair share of pros and cons, such as the difficulty of enticing a market that has been used to interacting with established brands. Despite that, once you get the hang of it, and as long as you continue to evaluate and observe the market that your business is serving, you won’t have much difficulty adjusting. One of the practices that you can make to help your business includes…

  • Optimizing Your Listings – Optimizing your listings corresponds to giving each of your products or service a fighting chance to be witnessed, appreciated, and purchased by the members of your target market. To optimize your listings, you may begin a link-building campaign for your Search Engine Optimization or include more narrowed details for your products or services. There are countless ways that you can explore to optimize your listing. The internet is a tool that will guide you through a sea of people in finding the right buyers for your services or products – which is why you should use it wisely. 
  • Manage Your Publication Materials – Other than optimizing your listings and figuring out how to woo your target market, creating suitable publication materials is also essential in business, especially in generating sales. Create your publication materials (such as posters for online publishing) so that it still supports your branding. Don’t stray away from how you have established your branding. For example, if you’re using the color green, stick with the gradient of green and the spectrum close to it. You wouldn’t want your target market to associate your products and services with another company.
  • Consistently Post on Your Social Media Pages – Broaden your scope of influence by staying inspired with your posts and social engagements. Make your image more known to the public, and don’t be afraid to seek attention. It’s your brand we’re talking about, not you personally. As a small business or supplier company, seeking attention creatively, such as keeping up with your social media status, is essential. Make your target market know that you’re actively working on your products or services. Don’t be afraid to post on different social media platforms. Discover unconventional ways in which you can try to entice your target market. You can try creating pegs or boards to narrow down your options. 
  • Offer Promos and Discounts – If it’s within your means, try offering discounts and promotional goods or freebies! People love the idea of receiving products or services at discounts, and all the more for freebies. If you can spare some amount or stock of supplies, you can excite your clients by giving them a little something. Remember, though, only give within your means. Don’t go all-out, giving away your supplies and profit to please your market. 
  • Have Good Customer Service – Customer service is like the lifeblood of eCommerce. A lot of purchases depend on the reviews a product or service has. For sellers of any sort, be it small businesses or suppliers, customer service is critical in ensuring the transparent service and product quality of what a brand has listed online. Working around obtaining excellent customer service also depends on the honesty within a product’s details. These may include the complete specs of a product or the details of a supply piece. 
  • Systematically Manage Your Logistics – If you haven’t established your brand yet, you will have to devise a plan of action on how to go about your logistics. However, if you have already been in the business for quite some time as a small business or supplier company, you can start by working on your contingency plan. One of the most specific factors about logistics is its chaotic characteristics, which is why it is integral to have contingencies when the going gets tough. You may also want to hire a logistics manager if your business already has the means to do so; this will ease the load on your shoulders as you operate your business. Lastly, for your logistics, it is also helpful to automate your systems. In this digital age, tracking your supply chain through a software system will be easier to refine how your business logistics can function in a better place.
  • Observe Your Courier and Shipment Processes –  Set a staple for your courier and shipment processes. Ensure that all the details of your party and your client’s party are included and inputted correctly. Additionally, make sure that you create a team that handles the delivery and receiving of your business. Have all the details and receipts needed for each transaction. Don’t miss out on the necessary details you and your client need when tracking your deliveries and orders. 

While these are just a few tips you can take to improve your business operations, you need not be limited to these reminders alone. Keep exploring, keep reading about how your industry evolves daily, and keep up the interest in making your business the best version of itself. See to it that you stay anchored in your business’ vision and mission, as well as your business goals – all these will help create a sounder plan of action for your business. Moreover, there are also different platforms that you can explore where you can gather inspiration for your business. 

To Sum It All Up

There’s a lot of business advice and tips out there, and here’s another one too, but to make matters clear, each business is unique – and how you run your company entirely depends on you and your team. How you interact with your suppliers, your clients, and the people who engage with your social media content is part of your target market. Take care of all these people who make up the entirety of your market; they are the collective of individuals who influence each other regarding your products or services. 

Take care of your business traction. Stay engaged with the new advancements on your eCommerce platform so you can utilize your efforts to benefit your business. If you’d like to generate more sales as a small business or supplier company, then, as mentioned above, know how your market functions. It’s all about understanding how to communicate with your target market and leaving a mark on these individuals. When in doubt, research the steps you need to take or whom you should trust with your business supplies. One good point you must never forget is to take precautions when facing difficulties in business and life. 

Lastly, when we look at our business under the microscope, sometimes we focus too much on the teeny-tiny details, but we miss out on the bird’s eye view of how much we have progressed. So, as important as the micro things in business are, it’s essential to keep a close connection with how much impact you create with your market. Have your team in different committees or departments that will be in charge of tasks such as shipment, logistics, social media management, and other areas. Other than selling out the maximum number from your projected sales figures, it is also essential to consider how well you work with your team and engage with your market. Spike the interest of your target market by keeping up with their interests and the trends that go on and around daily. One recommendation we can give is to join Shoppable Business, an eCommerce platform that offers all the tools and features you need to operate your business online. You may need some time to practice how it works, but once you get the hang of it, whatever products or services you sell, you will find your way to creating a motion that works best for your business.  

Now is the time to join Shoppable as a seller, or if you already have a business, it’s time to join Shoppable Business. Reach us at [email protected].

Leave a Comment

Subscribe Now!

Don't miss out.