How Small Businesses Can Win at E-Commerce

If you’re a small business trying to establish yourself or grow in e-commerce, you know it can be an uphill battle. Sure, you have a great product, but you can sometimes be overwhelmed by large companies that seem to always find their way to the top of every search engine. Meanwhile, the big boxes offer super-quick shipping that is increasingly free. That doesn’t mean you can’t compete.

Here are three tips from UPS for all businesses, no matter their size or location:

Be global. The recently released UPS Global Pulse of the Online Shopper study captured just how global e-commerce has become. The majority of shoppers in Canada, Brazil, and Mexico make international purchases, while almost half of U.S. shoppers do. If you’re only shipping to one nation, you’re missing a world of opportunity.

Try marketplaces. Nearly every e-commerce shopper reports making a marketplace purchase. If you’re selling on multiple marketplace platforms – and you should be to ensure you reach the most potential customers – it may seem like a challenge to stay organized and fill orders quickly and efficiently. But there are ways to manage multiple sites and still shave time off the cumbersome tasks of navigating orders and printing shipping labels. Putting everything in one place will make it easier to ship more orders.

Get serious about returns. Returns may seem like a giant headache that is difficult to manage and impossible to control, but they are an essential part of business. The good news is that technology is making it easier. Businesses can now pre-authorize returns and keep track of inbound and outbound shipments, allowing customers to feel more aware of the process. If you don’t focus on returns, get on it. A seamless returns process can mean the difference between an angry review on social media and a customer for life.

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