Written by Allie Delos Santos
With ecommerce shops gaining more popularity among consumers, some companies are struggling to keep up and maintain smooth operations. The result often includes operational bottlenecks and decreased efficiency. Both of which affect your bottom line.
In the article, we’ll show you how ecommerce customer service outsourcing can be a viable solution for efficiently and affordably accomplishing operational demands.
Benefits of Outsourcing for an Ecommerce Business
Ecommerce companies often outsource certain services or parts of their operations to third-party companies. Some frequently outsourced elements of businesses are email support, IT support, and human resources-related tasks, among others. Many businesses do this to save money on tasks they desperately need but cannot afford.
However, outsourcing for your ecommerce business may provide more benefits than just financial savings. Depending on your organization’s needs, outsourcing can be the answer to several problems that are typically too costly for companies to resolve internally.
Here are six advantages of outsourcing for your ecommerce business.
- Costs Savings
Outsourcing comes with the advantage of massive cost savings. It’s been proven that outsourcing can save you 70% to 90% on overhead expenses. You can replace the costs of managing an internal team, including salary, benefits, recruiting, training, and replacement expenses, with a fixed monthly fee that you can scale depending on your needs.
Outsourcing ecommerce functions is an effective way to manage operational expenses. With outsourcing, ecommerce companies can optimize their Opex and Capex while safeguarding their bottom line per employee.
- Leverage Expertise Fast
Running and maintaining an online store requires various skills, including fulfillment management, technical website maintenance, and customer support. One major reason for ecommerce businesses to outsource is the ability to access skillful expertise fast.
Outsourcing is even more important if you are building an ecommerce shop in multiple locations: Compliance protocols regarding payment security standards vary per region or country. An outsourced ecommerce provider will ensure a proper setup is in place. The provider can also manage multi-lingual and multi-regional customer service to care for shoppers across the globe.
- Alleviate Risk
Outsourcing also means you transfer the liability and associated risk to your provider. They manage all risk reduction programs to ensure your customer’s data are safe.
A reliable and experienced ecommerce outsourcing provider will have a proven track record in managing large projects with major security requirements. Their experience allows them to detect and foresee potential threats to your websites such as credit card fraud or traffic surges and respond accordingly to resolve the issue.
One of our tips for outsourcing customer service is to assess the provider’s security protocols to guarantee the ability to protect you in all situations.
- Flexibility of Resources
Your ecommerce business can maintain financial flexibility by easily scaling outsourced practices up or down depending on demand movements. For example, you can hire more customer support agents during the holidays when sales and demand are high. Similarly, you have the freedom to downscale during the off-season.
When it comes to outsourced employees, third-party providers are flexible enough to supply additional support to respond to urgent demands.
- Drive Innovation
With ever-evolving consumer demands in the ever-changing landscape of ecommerce, companies can use outsourcing to remain up-to-date with the latest changes in the market. They can tap into existing technologies and resources to ensure the best practices in ecommerce are followed to exceed the competition benchmark.
- Gain a Competitive Advantage
Lastly, outsourcing for an ecommerce business fortifies a competitive advantage in the game. By hiring outsourced ecommerce services, companies can concentrate on their core competencies, boosting productivity and efficiently managing in-house resources. With outsourcing, you can surpass your competitors who are not playing the game in a smart way.
Why Do Ecommerce Businesses Outsource?
Ecommerce businesses are outsourcing services to take advantage of existing technology and global talent. They want to have a better competitive advantage and boost customer experience. Even small- to mid-sized enterprises have seen the reliability of outsourcing when they sought to level the playing field in ecommerce.
It is not surprising that ecommerce businesses are outsourcing tasks. The industry is growing rapidly, and businesses must keep up with the growth even though it is costly.
The latest reports show that ecommerce reached $4.9 trillion in sales worldwide in 2021 and is expected to rise by 50% over the next four years. The partnership of retail and technology has paved the way for global companies like Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba.
Outsourcing repetitive and tedious processes could help business owners focus more on other aspects of their business. This helps them operate more efficiently.
Role of Outsourced Call Center in Ecommerce
An outsourced call center is one where ecommerce businesses can delegate the management of customer service functions to external agencies. Ecommerce companies can outsource live chat support, inbound call support, social media support, mobile support, or email support s well as other functions.
In the past few years, we’ve seen more ecommerce companies build larger live chat and social media support teams in conjunction with call center agents. This change is attributed to the strong increase in the number of social media users and other platforms where customers can make inquiries and purchases.
Despite the rise of chatbots, outsourcing customer support remains vital because consumers value human interaction. Chatbots can only handle simple inquiries. Humans, naturally, can listen, sympathize, assess, resolve, and escalate client complaints.
Outsourcing Services for an Ecommerce Business
Outsourcing for an ecommerce business encompasses several functions. Here are services that ecommerce businesses commonly outsource.
- Customer Service
Salesforce reports that almost half of their polled consumers said they would forego doing business with a company if they delivered subpar customer service. One of the most frequent causes of poor customer experience is when service agents fail to promptly attend to the client’s issues.
Generally, customer concerns include order fulfillment issues, exchange or return requests, and product inquiries. You may build an internal team of agents with the necessary knowledge and skills to manage customer service. However, if your in-house team fails to keep up with your customers’ demands and the company’s growth, the implications may not be positive.
Outsourcing customer support is an excellent idea because it gives you access to a team of experts with the necessary skills to accomplish service activities promptly. Outsourcing becomes vital for your ecommerce business because it saves time by taking over the recruitment and training processes. This way, you can concentrate on cost-effectively scaling your business.
- Accounting and Bookkeeping
Bookkeeping and accounting may not directly affect your profit, but they are an important supporting aspect of your ecommerce business.
Cost-effectiveness is one of the top advantages of outsourced bookkeeping and accounting. Outsourcing allows you to save plenty of money for establishing a new bookkeeping process with your organization since you no longer need to rent office space or hire additional employees to manage that function. Outsourcing bookkeeping tasks, for an ecommerce business, is a far more practical response to increased need.
Additionally, outsourcing allows you to save time since bookkeeping is a laborious function. Outsourcing for your ecommerce business enables you to concentrate on core competencies.
- Inventory Management
When your ecommerce business expands, the number of goods in your storage will increase. You have more products to send out and more items to store. As a consequence, you may find it challenging to manage an extensive inventory.
In this case, you may consider inventory management outsourcing. An external logistics partner will assist you in handling the challenges of meeting demands, including delivery due and overload inventory.
By outsourcing this function of your ecommerce business, you can significantly save on costs since you no longer need to employ internal staff for inventory activities. You can thus cut back on labor costs and other infrastructure-related expenses.
- Data Entry
Many small ecommerce businesses find it challenging to manage their data entry activities. Data entry tasks can include invoicing, taxing, product catalog and gallery management, and making website updates. Managing these tasks tends to be cumbersome and repetitive; outsourcing is the next best choice.
If you own a small ecommerce business, hiring full-time employees and building an entire data entry arsenal may not make sense. Ecommerce companies can outsource data entry services to access existing technologies and coding professionals who have long experience in encoding.
Ecommerce marketing activities are crucially important to your company, but managing the function internally may not always make sense. Outsourcing marketing to more proficient professionals in the field might be better for your ecommerce business, especially when you don’t have the necessary skills.
By outsourcing, you can tap into professionals who can design excellent ecommerce marketing strategies for your company. Possible ecommerce marketing activities to outsource include content writing, copywriting, email marketing, product photography, and social media posting.
The Bottom Line
Ecommerce is ever-evolving with constantly growing technologies, updating regulations, and changing consumer preferences. Companies should keep up, and to do that they should focus on building a connected, experience-driven, and innovative service to guarantee success.
Partnering with an outsourcing provider helps you rest assured that while you attend to your primary goals, someone reliable is managing your company’s other business processes for you.
Connect with us now to learn more about Unity Communications’ ecommerce outsourcing services.