Any management position, regardless of level requires fortitude and leadership, playing a key role in departmental and overall business performance. E-commerce management is no different and could be argued to be a more demanding and complex management role due to the cross-overs between human, geographical and technology demands from which critical business decisions must be made. As an e-commerce manager, it is essential that there are certain traits present. Here are 12 attributes which retail experts deem necessary for success in an e-commerce management role.
Number One: Lead by example
If you wish to see certain activities and procedures followed, it is critical that you lead by example. It is no longer appropriate or yielding to say “do this” or “do that” without first showing by example how the task is to be done. Employees are looking for empowerment and motivation, not fear and intimidation.
Number Two: An Understanding of basic IT
IT simply means internet technology. And where there are various levels of IT and an e-commerce manager is not required to understand all the ins and outs of it, they do need to have a basic IT skills and an understanding of how the internet works. Ecommerce sites will inevitably have moments where IT services are required. The goal is to have an e-commerce manager which can handle the small stuff and minimize the site’s down time.
Number Three: Be open and transparent
Businesses which are open and transparent are more apt to have customers who believe in the services and products which are available on that site. E-commerce managers should strive to provide potential clients and investors with a level of transparency in order to secure funding, sales, and avoid the misconception that their site has something to hide.
Number Four: Manger Engagement
E-commerce managers cannot sit by in their offices and expect for the work to get done by other men and women. They must be doers so as to inspire others to do so. Engagement with the workers as well as with the customers they serve is vital to creating the perception of personality which is so desired in online commerce. Should potential clients see that you are engaged in the decisions, the services, and the execution of the sales and day-to-day processes, they will deem the business less as a corporate entity and more as an organization providing something useful.
Number Five: Customer Engagement
A successful e-commerce manager will be able to not only engage with their target market, but also inspire customers to be engaged in their business. According to Forbes, “in order to survive today’s ever-changing landscape, business need to provide real-time, personalized experiences that reach customers just as they need them”. E-commerce managers should try to use notifications, Price compare data, and forums to encourage customer engagement.
Number Six: E-commerce managers must understand SEO
A site’s lifeblood is in the SEO. Managers must understand the current requirements for top SERPs. It is not enough for a manager to type a blog or two, or for the manager to haphazardly create a click ad campaign with the hopes of driving traffic and securing sales. A deep understanding of SEO algorithms for Google, Bing, and Yahoo are required. Without such, your site will not be seen and your sales will plummet.
Number Seven: The ability to present unique solutions
If you were to ask the top marketing percentile how they have become successful in business, many would answer that they found the solution to problem and presented it to the world. It is not that you are selling a product or a service, you are selling a solution. Remember that people want to be empowered. Yes, you have something for sale, but at the end of the day, a person wants to be able to look back and say “I fixed this problem”.
Number Eight: Persuasion
When a person shops online, he or she is interested in a product, they will use Price Comparison Websites (perhaps even Wiser or Automatch) to find the best deals. The successful ecommerce manager will have the ability to persuade the client that the expense is worth the investment. Whether this is through showcasing the product better than the competitor, through training and support, or through just having a superior product, the manager’s job is to secure the sale and win over the customer’s loyalty.
Number Nine: Understanding Logistics
Amazon has really put the strain on online companies to showcase their logistics. While in the past people were not so concerned with the shipping times, the weight of the product, the size of the package, and the various distribution centers that their product may have to go through before arrival, Amazon changed such. Now, customers wish to have next day delivery options, no questions asked returns, package tracking, and know precisely the size, weight, and expected time of arrival. Managers should have a firm grasp on logistics, or at least have a member on their team who does.
Number Ten: Be a native of the country to which you are selling
Bluntly put, if you are selling in an English-speaking country, you need to have a manager which reads, writes, and speaks English well. If you are in a French country the same should apply. What you do not want to have is someone who presents your products with grammatical errors, cannot communicate with the client, or accidently miss-represents the product you are trying to sell.
Number Eleven: The ability to read market data
In order to remain competitive in an ever-growing competitive market, managers need to be able to use price monitoring, price comparison websites, excel sheets, and understand various data formats. The manager should be able to speak in industry lingo to other managers and members of the team as well as present market data to various departments in formats which are standard to the industry.
Number Twelve: Be Socialable
By this it is meant that the e-commerce manager must understand how social media works and can present deals of the day, advertisements, competitive pricing, graphic art, snippets, training videos, etc. via social media platforms. The manager must understand and maximize organic content through such platforms to boost the SERPs of their e-commerce sites and increase sales.