3 Ecommerce Conversion Killers I Discovered While Answering Calls On Cyber Monday

Sometimes you spend so much time trying to increase your traffic and grow your audience that you lose track of the most important element of your business, your customers. As many of you know from my last post on How Our Store Performed On Cyber Monday, we had so much traffic and sales that day that I had to personally man the phone lines. And to be frank, it was the first time that I’d run customer support in over 5 years. Back when my wife and I first started our online store, we always answered every call and phone...

How We Did On Cyber Monday And A Holiday Gift Guide Of Student Shops

I hope everyone had an incredible Black Friday and Cyber Monday. For our online store, things got so busy on Cyber Monday that I was forced to man the phone lines. So I put on my “customer service agent” hat and headset and proceeded to talk to over 30+ people during the course of the day including one epic 40 minute conversation where I had to teach an 80 year old lady how to surf the web. **sigh** But it was all worth it in the end because we ended up with one of the largest sales days ever besides the...

The Best Way To Find Vendors And Suppliers For Your Online Store

The number one question that I receive from readers who want to open their own online store is how to go about finding vendors and suppliers. Do I purchase wholesale? Should I drop ship or should I contact the manufacturer directly? When my wife and I first started our online store, we faced these exact same questions. But having done a fair amount of research on each of the options above, I’d like to talk about our experiences and our take on each of these ways to stock merchandise for your online business. While our experiences...

How To Approach A New Wholesale Vendor Or Supplier When You Have No Store, No Site And No Sales

Picture this scenario… You’ve put together a list of potential vendors that you want to work with either from a tradeshow or from a manufacturer’s distributor list. You’ve never purchased in bulk before. You don’t have a website or a domain and you are extremely apprehensive about contacting your vendors for the very first time. So what do you do? You stall… A voice inside your head tells you…Maybe I should put up a website first. Maybe I should start a corporation or an LLC. Maybe I need business cards:) But in reality, you should be...

5 Painstaking Lessons Learned From Managing Inventory and Cash Flow The Wrong Way

Recently, my wife and I moved our ecommerce store into a brand new facility and it was one of the most stressful experiences that we’ve gone through in awhile. Now moving is always a pain. But just imagine running a business and trying to fulfill orders while thousands of pounds of inventory are in complete disarray with linens littered all over the office. On top of that, imagine that you have 4 employees who you must manage efficiently in this environment to move product out the door. Now my wife and I didn’t really want to move, but a...

How I Was A Neurotic Mess When Our Business First Launched

One of the reasons I love documenting my online business ventures is that I have the ability to go back in time and re-live some of my experiences as an entrepreneur. And this came in handy the other day when a reader asked me the following question. Steve, it seems like you always know what you are doing. Do you ever get impatient with the progress of your business? Do you ever compare yourself to other entrepreneurs and get frustrated with yourself? Now my first reaction was to respond with something trite like “Don’t give up. It’s completely normal to...

How Long Does It Take To Make Real Profits Or Good Money With An Online Business?

I receive many questions via email every single day but my #1 most asked question is… How long do you think it will take for me to make money with my business? Here’s another common permutation of this same question… I need to be able to make money in 6 months, can it be done? And finally my favorite… Can I expect to make 100K in the first year with my online store like you did? One year ought to be enough runway right? So here’s the truth. Brand new entrepreneurs are horrible at predicting how far they can get with their businesses in...

How To Create A Website For Amazon Brand Registry In Under 10 Minutes For 3 Dollars Per Month

Registering your brand with Amazon is more important today than it has ever been before. Not only does registering your brand allow you to control your listing but it’s also a requirement to get your brand gated so that other sellers can not sell your products on Amazon. At a high level, registering your brand on Amazon is very easy to do. All you need is the following… A Branded Email Address – Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail email addresses are NOT acceptable. In order for Amazon to accept you into the brand registry, you must have your own domain branded email. Branded...
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