Consumer Returns Management in Cross Border Commerce

Last updated on May 25th, 2018 at 08:45 am

Cross-border commerce does not only rely on successful product delivery. Businesses also need to equally focus on the consumer returns management especially if local geography needs to be addressed. A well-oiled return management process has the power to exceed the customer’s expectations and fuels the business expansion process. This also ensures the brand loyalty. Hence, easy returns policy is the chief concern for any online shopper or consumer before taking a step into the online experience of shopping.

Let us understand why Consumer Returns Management plays a vital role in cross-border commerce.

Consumer Focus

The challenging part for any eCommerce business is providing a seamless shopping experience. There is also a constant challenge to improve the shopping experience keeping a focus on the consumers. This engages and retains the consumers in the chain. One such process in the chain is offering “hassle-free” returns to the consumers. eCommerce businesses should have the ability to offer lenient and flexible returns. This engages more consumers and retains the customer base with a thrust to expand the business. This also helps the businesses to function minimizing the risk of fraud and abuse.

Customer value and satisfaction

Any business whether offline or online should aim at clarifying the return policies to promote strong sales. According to the UPS survey, about 88% of the online shoppers check the return policies first and then proceed to shop. The rest will forgo purchases if they are unable to locate or understand the policies. Thus, it becomes essential to value the customer’s preferences and satisfy their needs.

eCommerce businesses have a variety of products to offer to the millions of customers online. They offer products and services for everything, right from fashion to electronics. Customers have the freedom to purchase from a wide range of the products. These companies can create opportunities in the competitive market with their accessible and easy return policies. This attracts the customers and they can leverage the online stores with the same old traditional touch.

Online shoppers should get the same offline shopping experience with the qualifying purchases. They have the leisure to check the product details before they add the items to the cart. Consumers and buyers can get the chance to check the minutest product details just like the traditional stores. Every product detail should include the product color, material texture, size, pictures and much more. Thus, eCommerce businesses have maintained the decorum that the offline businesses offer. They do offer exciting return policies that encourage the consumers to take a plunge into the wide shopping experience.

Fraud prevention

Fraud detection and prevention is the widest challenge in the eCommerce world. Businesses should keep a watch on the illegal activities if any. Those with the lax return policies might turn out to be great money for the hackers and criminals. To play on a safer side, eCommerce businesses should build definitive eCommerce return processes and policies. Also, they should maintain high-level security to avoid any such risks. Otherwise, they might become indelible marks on the names of reputable brands.

Efficiency in returns management

While returns will always be a crucial part of the business, they do not need to be a liability. To increase the efficiency and foster growth for your business, develop effective reverse logistics processes. This aids as a competitive advantage and can prove beneficial.

Hence, for effective returns policy, make sure you:

  • Create meaningful content about the returns process and policy.
  • Make the returns policy and process more understanding as per local demographics.
  • Offer flexible, convenient and easy options – such as in-store returns.

For businesses to redefine their returns management, here are some important points to focus on.

  • Focus on the global picture: Easy and flexible returns solutions should be available to everyone and everywhere. Businesses ought to focus on their current return logistics to manage the cross-border trade. They should be able to turn the local legends into international successes.
  • Make the returns process simple for online shoppers: Simplify the returns process and policies. This helps the customers to easily initiate the returns through calls or an online returns management portal. Businesses should provide 24/7 access to the customers through a customer service hotline.
  • Track your returns smartly: Know where your returns go when the customers send them. Businesses should aim at establishing cost-effective ways of determining the stocks and maintaining them.

Cross-Border Commerce: Choosing the Right Regional Trends with Payment options

Last updated on May 25th, 2018 at 08:47 am

Cross-border commerce is one of the most challenging ways for the online merchants to develop their presence in the market. The e-commerce merchants have started focusing more on the cross-border markets to grow their business. Today every merchant aims at expanding their business or market employing regional sensibilities and local market flavor for their success. They focus on building strategies that promote their growth in the online market and create a place in the heart of the consumers. To grow faster, they have to build strategies taking into consideration the market trends and key elements. Here are some of the best strategies:

Trust first: Pay locally; offer at a global level

A global offering can never be enough. Consumers demand secure transactions while shopping online. For this, online merchants have to focus on offering the commonly used, trusted and secured payment methods in the local markets. They have to ensure their customer’s safety, confidence along with the market’s conversion rates. Apart from this, the online merchants have to keep up with the pace of technology. The power of technology is undeniable in the expansion of markets in the global and local market. It binds the consumers and the online merchants across all the geographies and various channels giving a great experience to both in all terms.

Merchants need an overview of the market dynamics and the consumer’s behavior for the successful expansion of their online businesses. This way, it helps them to localize the experience. Moreover, businesses have to study the local payment cultures. For instance, in some countries, consumers trust payment modes as credit and debit cards while in some they trust e-Wallets.

Omni-Channel and Social eCommerce – The future

Omni-channel retail and the social eCommerce is the future already. This gives fully-integrated and seamless customer experience. This also helps to understand how the customers interact with the online brands across all the channels. The eCommerce merchants can gather the comprehensive data from various geographies, brands, and stores. This collectively helps to analyze the customers’ behaviors and preferences in a better way. Furthermore, this can help to create great customer offerings and provide loyalty solutions.

In the digital space, millennials prove to be great influencers. They play a vital role in voicing their opinions and sharing information. For instance, 50-60% of the consumers follow brands and products on social media. They browse a plethora of products on the social media. As per online surveys, 33% of the online shoppers utilize social media for potential purchases. Thus, the online and social recommendation of brands and products encourage the significance of cross-border trades and transactions. In future, social eCommerce and omnichannel strategies will become a major source of payment drivers too.

Go cashless and seek new opportunities

The eCommerce field is flourishing at a more accelerated rate. By 2019, it is expected to hit $3.6 trillion. This is the right time for the eCommerce enthusiasts and merchants to invest and expand internationally. To strategize a good expansion, merchants must understand the landscape and seek out new opportunities. They need to seek out effective ways of electronic payments as the global market is turning cashless. Most countries like North America, Europe carry out cashless payments.

In comparison to the domestic eCommerce market, cross-border eCommerce is skyrocketing at an unprecedented rate. Consumers have started trusting international sources to buy products that are unavailable locally. Online merchants can turn these higher demands into high-profit margins. They can grow their businesses effectively. That said, new opportunities arise with the growth of cross-border eCommerce market.

Key points to remember

While choosing the right step with the payment modes, here are some key points every merchant should consider. So, choose the payment partner smartly to grow your online presence and a strong global network.

  • Focus on the regional trends that meet the customers’ demands and expectations
  • Know the online market value of your products in terms of local and global market
  • Follow the customer shopping habits across various geographies, devices, and media
  • Integrate the trusted payment methods to ensure secure customer online shopping experiences
  • Focus on the fast delivery of the products and best return policies
  • Exciting payment cashback offers and coupons
  • Keep a check on the local regulations, exchange rates and policies

To summarise, developing a successful cross-border strategy is not just about best products and services. It is equally necessary to maintain trust, security and provide a great shopping experience for all the customers. Along with this, they also need to retain the customer base, product quality, brand awareness and customer satisfaction values. Thus, for a seamless experience, the online merchants have to focus on developing expansion strategies that are easy and trustworthy.

Shopify Plus: An Effective E-commerce Enterprise Solution that is Feature-Rich and Fantastic!

Last updated on April 22nd, 2018 at 10:49 am

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” – Anaïs Nin

When your business grows you need to find something scalable and stable platform which could handle this growth of yours.

You may find yourself being stretched in new and unknown ways as your online business grows. All growth comes with growing pains; the expansion of a web store is not any exception.

Perhaps your e-commerce platform may get affected by this growth as well, and to be honest, if the platform breaks down you go down with it. So, when the growing pain becomes overwhelming, it’s time to consider a switch.

More than 3,600 businesses trust Shopify Plus to grow bigger and faster in this competitive environment. According to the Shopify’s analysis, Shopify Plus merchants grows at an average of 126 % year-over-year.

However, Shopify’s offer is for small and medium-sized businesses and Shopify Plus is for prime volume stores. Shopify Plus is an enterprise-level platform. It handles all the technical legwork of running a large online store for you.

Now let’s discuss some advantages which you will enjoy as Plus client.

1) Extended Validation SSL Certificate

-You must have seen this many a times

-“Your connection to this site is not secure”.

-After viewing that alert warning what you do?

‘You instantly leave that website.’

The same thing applies to almost all the people across the internet. They would immediately leave the webpage which pops-up that warning.

EV SSL certificates were invented by one of the most prominent certificate vendors to enhance e-commerce security, fight phishing attacks and to create the most trusted SSL Certificate. Visual assurance of security helps e-commerce merchants increase trust, reduce shopping cart abandonment, and build long-term relationships.

Comparision between Simple SSL vs EV SSL
Simple SSL EV SSL
The padlock icon in address bar. Padlock icon and Name of the organization in the address bar.

 

Doesn’t help users cross-check the website’s identity.

 

Verified legal Identity is displayed to the users.
No identity check by a human being. Meticulous Documentation checks to confirm their authenticity and ownership.

 

without EV-SSL

 

with EV-SSL

 

Features of EV SSL:

  • “Green lock” symbol with your Company/Brand name beside the green lock in the address bar which builds the immediate trust of your customers and helps with conversion.
  • Provides the highest strength of 2048-bit signatures with 256-bit
  • Recognized by 99% of browsers and mobile devices.
  • Unlimited server licenses.

What are the advantages you will get as EV SSL certificate holder

source : https://www.shopify.com/enterprise/upgrade-to-shopify-plus

 

As a Shopify Plus client, you will get certified Level 1 PCI DSS compliance, a site-wide EV SSL certificate to redirect traffic from HTTP to encrypted HTTPS, data protection, and risk assessment for each and every order. Setting up your EV SSL takes minutes to complete, one or two weeks at most to confirm, and can make a surprising impact on your bottom line.

 

2) Automate your Business

The human mind is the most powerful tool. Even high-quality machines can’t replicate them. The mind is capable of solving complex problems, which modern technology can just dream of it for now.

That’s why it is important to free and relax your business team from being delayed in repetitive, labor-intensive processes, and to keep them on the stimulating important, and increasingly complex challenges that your business faces.

2 Automation Tools available exclusively to Shopify Plus customers

People are expensive, even when it comes to just pushing buttons, which makes it harder to save money. Therefore Shopify introduced the most effective way to automate real-time alerts and business operating process. Let’s see some examples how Shopify flow can improve your organization’s processes.

Tasks that customers do:

-Customers place an order.

– Customer place an order whose value is over £500.

-Then checkouts to the payment.

How does it work?

Flow combines business processes into 3 simple steps:

  1. The Trigger: When an order is placed.
  2. The Condition: Customer whose order value is over £500.
  3. The Action: It automatically tag customer as VIP and Email customer services to include a thank you note or greetings.
source:https://www.digitaloperative.com/blog/2017/shopify-flow

Workflow initializes when an order is created. It makes sure that your VIP’s (> £500/monthly spending on your store) customers are being properly rewarded.

Rewards high Average Order Value (AOV= Revenue/Number of orders) and longtime customers, track and apply the tag to customers those who convert through targeted marketing campaigns.

 

  • Order risk management:

It sends the email to customer service or finance team when a high risk (fraud) order is placed. Or automatically cancel the order from countries deemed high risk or you simply do not deliver to.

Afterward, another email can be generated for the customer service team to contact the customer and explain why their order was canceled.

 

  • Manage your inventory:

You would never run out of popular products in your store again. Flow sends email to your supplier to restock when inventory levels drop below a chosen number. It also advises marketing team via slack to pause any product based advertising campaigns until the stock is back.

 

 

  • Automate Collections:

Whenever you add a product with a tag, flow will automatically include them in the collection having that tag name. For example, if an item has “t-shirt” in the product description, you can create an automation to include them in ‘t-shirts’ and new collection.

 

 

In the eye of E-commerce, these holidays are like the Super Bowl of shopping. It’s one of those days in which retailers prepare for weeks in advance to make sure they are inclined to compete with millions of other vendors and brands selling their products.

It is really difficult and painful for the merchants managing a growing e-commerce business while waiting around until a specific time (often even after midnight), just to push a button to start a sale or promotion.

With Launchpad you can preplan everything. Launchpad offers a simple way to automate sales campaigns, product releases, and flash sales. It is an outstanding tool for high-energy holiday sales like Black Friday/Cyber Monday and more.

 

It allows you to manage complex events such as:

  • Save your time by scheduling a sale by automatically launching your event checklist.
  • Auto publish selected product at a selected time and date.
  • Lock your store to create a hype and anticipation, before the start of the sale
  • Track the events performance in real-time to understand the consumer behavior.
  • Add a discount offer (BOGO) on the specific collection during the sale.
  • Control every step of the customized sales campaign.

So, as you know how Launchpad can save time and give you peace of mind. You can now go to bed without worrying about anything, and start selling even when you are asleep.

 

3) Customize with Shopify Script      

As a Shopify Plus client, you can make a significant impact on your bottom line by few customizations with Shopify Script.

Whether it is utilizing balance exchange, to fire a coupon, an exit offer, or customizing the look and feel of the checkout, everything is just a few clicks away so it matches your brand style.

To do this Shopify Plus provides you the facility to

  • Customize your checkout directly- both in its look and feel as well as in your customer’s field like shipping methods, and payment option.
  • Customize your checkout dynamically through with Shopify Scripts and the Shopify Script Editor.

For example, after redesigning their website which includes dynamic and live pricing, Merchology observed that their mobile revenue increased by 340%.

What Merchology did was they customized their Shopify Scripts implementation which looks inside the user’s (customer) shopping cart, identifies if any changes have been made by the customer (for example, if they adjust an item’s size or increase/decrease their order quantity) Shopify Script will automatically adjust the checkout price in real-time.

 

4) Build for Growth

As your business grows big, the more time you spend on maintaining and managing your staff and tech infrastructure. When you spend more time on these things, the harder it is to focus on the strategies that made you and your online store successful in the first place.

Then you realize how overwhelming and exhausting managing this type of growth can be. Even if the potential is there it can all be wiped out by an unknowingly wrong significant decision.

Being a merchant on Shopify Plus what you will surely appreciate is the platform’s capabilities for the growth. It is designed and built to accommodate this type of growth.

 

5) Unrivaled Support

In order to make your Shopify Plus experience outstanding, you’ll work closely with various merchant success team. This includes Solutions Engineer and Gurus for the 24/7 support.

Merchant success team not only make you concentrate on features and opportunities applicable to you but also they make sure that you get ahead of the knowledge curve with special access to new feature betas.

Other than this they also offer platform training, assist with third-party integrations, and help find approved Partners to work on a design that you prefer and development projects specific to your business.

 

Final Thoughts

Well-known brands names like Budweiser, Bulova, The Economist, Nestle, and RedBull use Shopify Plus to run their e-commerce business.

With this multi-functional platform, you get free apps that automate tasks, notifications, campaigns and many more, which gives you more time to focus on product development, marketing optimization, and other strategies to further your brand expansion.

What are you waiting for? It’s time to upgrade yourself and your e-commerce business to the most reliable and scalable e-commerce platform Shopify Plus to accelerate your growth at its best.

 

Shopify Gift Cards: A Unique way to boost your bottom line

Last updated on April 21st, 2018 at 03:08 pm

 

Offering physical gifts to your loved ones may not always be adored by the one you are gifting. The reason behind this can be that they didn’t like what you gave, the gift you gave was useless to them and many more.

Therefore it would be preferable if you send them a physical gift card having some value. So that, your loved ones could buy anything of their choice using the gift card.

Well in the same way, if you offer your online store’s customer to buy digital gift cards option it would not solely increase your sales but also make your Shopify store more “gift giver friendly”.

 

Introduction to Shopify Gift-Cards

Shopify introduced the Gift-Cards option for all the Professional and Unlimited plan user in the year 2013.

Gift cards offer a versatile manner for your customers to get a present for somebody from your store, creating it simple for them to share their love for your brand while also maintaining full freedom of choice for the recipient.

As indicated by a study directed by the National Retail Federation, 81% of Americans will buy at least one gift card during the holidays. Indeed, about 70% of the customers who are receiving the gift cards, will spend more than the value on the card. It’s a win-win situation.

Shopify Gift Cards are extremely flexible and allows you to enhance the gift card experience on your site. As an example, you can:

Specify the price values available to your customers ($10,$25, $50, $75, or whatever)

  • Personalize the email notification sent to your customers after purchase
  • You can send your customers their gift card balance and manage gift cards in your Shopify admin.

 

How do they work?

When your online customer is making a purchase in your store they can redeem the value (amount of money or balance) of a gift card by entering its unique code at the time of checkout. A gift card holds a balance which can be used to spend over more than one order.

Shopify gift card offers you as a store owner to view and manage the status of each gift cards in your Shopify admin.

Some Requirements to sell and redeem Shopify gift card:

  • You must have Shopify plan or higher. Basic Shopify plan is not supported to use the gift card.
  • Need to activate the gift card feature in your Shopify admin to start selling.
  • Go to Product > Gift Cards from your Shopify admin panel.
  • Click on ‘Start selling gift cards on my store’.

You are done. Your first gift card is created immediately, but it is hidden from sales channels by default.

Shopify also offer you to sell and redeem physical gift cards, all you need is:

The Retail Package:

The retail package is meant to assist you to create a full retail store experience, so the majority of its features work only with Shopify POS for iPad.

If you use Shopify POS for iPhone, then you will be able to add the retail package to use a Swipe card reader with a supported third-party gateway and physical gift cards.

Physical gift Card Enable:

If your store is in the Shopify plan or higher and you have got the retail package, then you’ll be able to purchase physical gift cards from the Shopify Hardware Store.

Sales Channel that supports gift card

Your online shopper can redeem their gift cards on any of your sales channels that use Shopify’s checkout :

  • Online Store
  • Buy Button
  • Pinterest
  • Facebook (when you use Shopify’s checkout)
  • Messenger (when you use Shopify’s checkout)
  • Shopify POS

For Facebook and Messenger sales channel, your customer won’t be able to use the gift card if you use Facebook’s checkout. They have to use the Shopify’s checkout to make use of gift cards.

 

Benefits to You and Your Customer

Today’s consumer adores digital Gift cards due to their instant deliverability. For the already occupied, last-minute shopper, sending gift cards to favorite local businesses may be a lifesaver for them.

Offering visitors of your online store the alternative to purchase a gift card for their friends and family is a sure fire way to participate in the season of giving and to give your sales a boost at the same time.

Here’s what your customers can do:

  • Use the gift card multiple time.
  • Use more than one gift card for a single purchase.
  • Check their gift card balance by opening the unique link sent via email after purchase.
  • Use gift cards jointly with other discount codes.

Many shoppers are more likely to buy gifts from your store if they know a gift card option is available. This can calm nervous buyers who aren’t quite sure about size, color or which item might be the best for the recipient.

When using gift cards many Shopify stores see a decrease in exchanges and returns. Since it’s difficult to select the right item (or size or color), letting the recipient choose it themselves means it’s less likely to get returned and since returns and exchanges can be very costly and time-consuming, the more you can cut down on those things, the better.

 

Conclusion :

Even if the gift card feature does require the Shopify plan or higher, many store owners see a significant return on this investment with a rise in gift sales. Additionally, the Shopify plan comes with advanced reporting tools and a lower process rate, so those features and the benefits of selling gift cards can often result in a big advantage for your business.

 

Optimizing the Local Market for International Selling

Last updated on May 25th, 2018 at 08:47 am

The cross-border commerce world is booming rapidly. With just a click of a button on smartphones, you can buy and sell anything across the globe. As per the Forrester study, the cross-border commerce is likely to double by 2021. This will bring a phenomenal increase in the outcome of sales and revenues. Thus, a majority of the online shoppers are going global in their search for sales and purchases. This has given a little run for money to the retailers. However, some of them have joined the bandwagon in the global marketplace.

For instance, the cross-border market of China will see a remarkable progress in 2021 with a huge increase in sales and purchases in this market. India and US are also following suit.

Let us understand the major considerations for the success in the global market.

Optimize local markets

As per research, a majority of online shoppers prefer using the globally recognized marketplaces. They focus on gaining a potential profit margin. This gives them a global recognition and a great customer outreach. It is necessary for these merchants to understand the market rates and values. Also, timely analysis of these helps them to increase their market.

Consumers should look out for multiple benefits to shop at marketplaces:

  • Best deals
  • Free shipping and delivery
  • Ease of searching what you what at one click
  • Wide range of products for all categories
  • Faster delivery time
  • Customer Loyalty Points
  • Quality products
  • Great customer experience
  • Brand loyalty

Cross-border market strategies

Marketplaces have crossed international divides. There has been a substantial increase in the purchase of online marketplaces. This ratio is high when compared to retailer websites.

These cross-border market strategies succeed based on a lot of factors:

  • Retailer’s market presence
  • How much risk a retailer has to undertake?
  • What difference lies between a marketplace’s and retailer’s own assortment?
  • Is the retailer fully aware of the cross-border policies and charges?

Be like the locals and pose like a foreigner

The US, China, and India have an astounding cross-border market. Whether it is clothes, cosmetic products, food products and electronic items, they hold their positions in the marketplace.

It is essential for these online shoppers to know the insights of the local markets. They have to be aware of the conditions of the local markets, policies and the tax benefits. They have to understand and analyze the demand and supply of their products in these areas. This is the biggest challenge though. But from the sell-side, it is the most important thing to consider while entering the global markets.

Participation in the national market

The online brands have to actively participate in the national markets. They have to continuously strive to build their presence. This gives a good exposure in terms of markets and the consumers. They have to keep the important things while expanding their business globally.

  • They have to understand the fiscal policies.
  • They have to be well prepared for regulatory challenges.
  • They should do proper calculations of the border taxes and custom duty charges.
  • They should ensure the import/export compliance.
  • They have to do accurate shipping and product costs’ calculations.
  • They have to manage logistics effectively and efficiently.
  • They have to process the data and conduct secured payments.

Focus on the brand and quality

It would be tough to survive in the global market if marketers rely completely on the brand. Product perception has to go hand in hand. As per a survey, 70% of the consumers make at least one cross-border purchase annually. This is because of the attractive pricing and discounts they get as well as the strong perception of the product aligned with local needs and quality expectations. Also because of the variety, they get in the products and its qualities.

It is quintessential to localize the brand. They need to create its online presence to enter the new global market. They have to deliver quality products and create a brand awareness to the local consumers. Thus, they have to look like an outsider but have to behave like the locals. The brand equity and the product quality matter among the consumers in countries such as India, China, and Hong Kong.

Manage the inventories and outlets

There are few of the retail brands that have managed to build empires. They have made the most of both cross-border and the domestic deals. These global brands do not enter the market directly. They have to plan and strategize cautiously. They have to manage the resources and the entire system. They have to be quick and efficient in delivering goods and services to their consumers.

Managing the inventory globally is one of the prime concerns for all the online retailers. They have to look into the challenges such as currencies, language, geographical distance, instant delivery and customer satisfaction. Regardless of the time zones and the cultural differences, they have to manage the inventories most effectively.

Conclusion

Brands have to evaluate the market position before entering into the cross-border commerce. As per the geographical and historical conditions, they might have to face huge challenges. But, they have to equally focus on the local brand perceptions to rise and stand out in this global market. Once they ensure compliance for all sorts of cross-border transactions, they surely can gain maximum success in multiple markets.

 

 

Top 5 Strategies for Harnessing Cross-Border Commerce Success!

Last updated on May 25th, 2018 at 08:48 am

By 2021, the cross-border market will boom up to $1 trillion, as per recent Business Intelligence reports. There has been an exceptional rise in global purchases due to the ample reach, given by cross-border commerce along with its price and quality benefits. The driving force behind cross-border commerce has been the lack of access to goods domestically. Also, the better product pricing and affordable shipping contribute to its success. Thus, most of the consumers are turning to international vendors who are prevalent in local online markets.

Consumers in the countries like China and US import and export several products and services. For instance, people in China tend to everything from baby products to gadgets online owing to their lack of quality in some local markets. In response, merchants aim to expand their businesses to a global level, while making sense of the local sense, language, flavour, and preferences. They target the overseas market and expand their horizons to new global customers for obvious reasons.

Major Strategies that can leverage cross-border commerce benefits

Are you thinking about entering a new cross-border market or are keen to expand your eCommerce business globally? Here are some strategies you need to pay attention to.

  1. Select the market appropriate to your business

Do your homework. Determine who will be your international customers. Understand your product value in terms of their demands and your supplies. You can consider the following factors before finding the best product :

  • What is the condition of your selling product in the market?
  • Will there be a substantial growth of your business with your product?
  • Who are your competitors and your consumers?

Possibly, there is a solution for all your queries.

  • You can search for the most trending products on Reddit, Alibaba and more.
  • You can decide accordingly and refine your selection later.
  • Finally, dive into the data analytics to validate your idea.
  • Check out the competition in the global market on the basis of surveys and reports.
  • Analyze your sales and calculate the profit margin.

  1. Research on the trends in the international markets

A proper and efficient research always helps in providing effective results. For international markets, you have to be keen on the trending strategies and policies. You have to take into consideration the competitors, their product quality and the discounts they offer. You have to analyze your production rates and its corresponding market values. You have to focus on the product quality and its marketing so it can stand out in the international market.

You should not miss out on the data security and customer’s satisfaction. You can hire an international support in that case. These are going to be a real wealth of your company and its market value.

  1. Focus on the payment modes

There are multiple payment options available in the market. Some have global access, while some are limited to local markets. You have to be very careful and precise considering the most secured payment modes in eCommerce. The payment modes vary largely in terms of countries.

In order to successfully scale globally, you have to focus on integrating and accepting all payment options. But again, know what your target market prefers. You can always consider the standard secured payment options such as Visa, MasterCard. Later, as per the market and sales, you can add the appropriate ones. You also need to take account of the local currencies and conversions for cross-border markets. Most importantly, you have to promise the consumers about their money security.

  1. Be aware of the tax rules and regulations

This is the most important point when thinking about expanding your eCommerce across borders. You have to be well aware of the government taxes and how to apply them to your products. You have to investigate the custom duties charges and taxes. You have to inform about the additional charges to your customers.

You have to understand the free trade agreements before venturing to do business across the borders. You should also know the market policies and tax rules. Ultimately, these will be inclusive of the costs, packages, shipment of your product. Hence strategic pricing and quality based on local market conditions and competitions is highly important.

  1. Set up an International returns policy

When you think about the cross-border market, you ought to consider the international returns and policies. You have to understand the local laws and the overhead costs. You have to be transparent about the return fees or the restocking amount. Also, you have to be clear to your consumers about the full refunds or the store credits.

You have to consider the approaches for faster and secured refund options. For this, you can build partnership with the logistic services or set up a local returns center. These can offer a number of return options to the customers. This altogether, helps you manage and simplify the process efficiently.

Apart from all these, one also needs to take the ownership of the business. You have to upscale the entire process not as an individual, but as a team. So, it is better to appoint the right manpower, resources and logistics in the local region too. You should also focus on the technology and services for delivering a standard process. This will help your business get major visibility globally.

That said, to make an impactful start in the cross-border markets, you need to identify the right marketplace. This can help you earn cool profit margins for your global business.

Devising International Payments for Cross-Border Commerce

Devising International Payments for Cross-Border Commerce

Selling internationally can be a thrill and a hassle as one needs to process international payments efficiently. The good news is that e-commerce sellers do have loads of options to make global sales easy enough for buyers and sellers.

Do US Merchants Accept Payments from Abroad?

In most cases, they do not accept international payments since the processing fees are high enough with huge risk of fraud and chargebacks. For working with customers in other countries, one would have to set up an account for those orders specifically.

International Merchant Accounts give owners dealing with cross-border commerce with multiple solutions meant for small businesses. These accounts have the ability to accept money and process varied payments automatically. They also feature fraud prevention and other attributes. These accounts also offer alternatives to payment aggregators like PayPal, and even present buyers a view of an established business along with currency exchange rates as part of fees.

Once you’ve opted for international merchant account for allowing international transactions, here are some things you need to do

  • One needs to pay set-up fee to obtain processing equipment along with relevant software.
  • After installing the software, and set account information, link the account with business bank account.
  • The money received through the merchant account will be converted to U.S. dollars and transferred to bank account.

Instructions to link international payment service with marketplace

To link the payment service with the storefront, follow the rules and create your checkout process. Here are some payment aggregators and services that would aid cross-border ecommerce and international payments.

  • PayPal

Being the most popular payment processor for online sales, PayPal now operates in a staggering 190 international markets and even accepts payment in 24 currencies without one needing a merchant account. Transaction fees are mostly lower than the fees levied by banks, most transactions are also swift and secure. It can be set up with an email account and a credit card only and there are several free tools for shipping and tracking reports.

One does get charged per transaction, withdrawals and currency conversions and one can set out adequate product prices for including those fees.

Set pricing for international customers in relevant currencies that are available for you to accept and the money can get transferred to the local bank account within a couple of days. Consider a dedicated merchant account if there are consistent transactions along with a dedicated chargeback department for the services.

Payment comes in default currency through PayPal based on account preferences. One can convert money at the standard rate to account for any wayward currency fluctuations. PayPal monitors foreign exchange rates and adds its own fee of 2.5 percent to the transaction especially when funds are moved from PayPal to bank account.

  • Individual credit card firms

One can work directly with merchant accounts including the popular Visa, MasterCard, and the like. But these provide limited international buyers’ options and thus limit sales.

  • International money orders

Your customer from another country can purchase money orders from their bank, and are mostly considered secure. Fees are minimal, but payment process takes up 8-10 days. Also these international money orders are liable to frauds!

  • International wire transfers

If one has forged a relationship with an international customer, international wire transfers can be swift although expensive at $35 – $60 per transaction.

  • Google Wallet

This wallet is available in limited countries and the UI is uncluttered and boasts of a good online presence, and many cross-border commerce organizations have started using it.

  • Telegraphic Transfers between banks

These transfers have been used for several decades and now they are losing importance owing to convenient payment options.

  • Personal check

Major marketplaces discourage use of personal checks owing to huge chances of fraud. One can even consider the checks on a case-by-case basis if you are the prime decision-maker and comfortable with varied taxes, currency exchange and ancillary fees.

Conclusion

Payment terms and methods are few and far between that actually work in an online marketplace. Check out the best mode of payment for your cross border commerce strategy although do encourage every channel for hassle-free payment for customers.

Shopify or WooCommerce? A dilemma for most of the E-commerce entrepreneur

Last updated on June 18th, 2018 at 05:59 am

Suppose you have an idea to start an e-commerce business, and you have already planned every little thing that you require for the same.

But then the essential part comes is the decision of choosing ‘Which hosting provider to choose?’, ‘What domain to purchase?’ , ‘Which platform is more secure?’ , ’Which is Cheaper?’ and even more.

In this post we are going discuss about Shopify and Woo-Commerce, and which e-commerce platform to choose based on your individual needs.

Basically, these two Shopify and Woo-Commerce are most popular and easy to use e-commerce platform available in the market.

What is Shopify?

Shopify is an e-commerce platform which makes it easy for you to create an online store and sell your product, customize your storefront, accept payment, organize your products and manage inventory, all from a single platform without worrying about the technical aspects such as web-hosting, caching, security etc.

What is Woo-Commerce?

Woo-Commerce is an open source e-commerce plugin built for WordPress. Because of the open-source nature, you can customize every aspect of your store. It also allows you to leverage the most powerful content management system (CMS) and use it to run an online store.

So let’s compare Shopify vs Woo-Commerce to see which one is appropriate as individual’s need.

 

  • DESIGN

Online customers generally don’t trust a site that doesn’t  have the right visual appearance or doesn’t function well as it should. As for our house architecture and design plays a crucial role, same as in websites look and design is everything.

Shopify Designing:

Shopify has an impressive range of themes and comes with more than 54 different store template, of which 10 are free of cost. And all these themes have their own unique variations, which means technically you’re getting more than 100 separate design.

The good thing is that they are all mobile responsive themes, fashionably sleek and clean aesthetic, which make it perfect for the modern era digital world.

All the Shopify themes (even free themes) are designed by professional web-designer, so if you’re looking for some quality themes for your online store then Shopify is best for you.

Shopify themes can be customized easily, you can quickly adjust colors and styles. You can also take help of a developer to use the platform’s specialized ‘Liquid’ language to make substantial changes and make your brand stand out.

You need to pay as high as $180 for the premium ones, but what you get in exchange is a great design.

Ratings: 4.7/5

 

Woo-Commerce Designing:

When it comes to designing in Woo Commerce, the world is your oyster, you just need to have designing knowledge. As it is built for WordPress, in most cases you are able to select any WordPress theme of your choice and make it work in your WooCommerce.

As Woo-Commerce is open-source many third-party also share their themes, which sometimes may not look that good when compared with Shopify’s theme.

To start with WooCommerce its own default theme called Storefront (free) is a really efficient creation that has a focus on all the important elements of an e-commerce store.

As WooCommerce is open source developers from all over the world sell(or give away) some wonderful themes for all sorts of industries and purpose. It is just like shaping up your pot with your own hand, completely flexible and customizable.

Most of the child theme for Storefront are available at $39/theme, there are also themes with a price tag as high as $119.

Ratings: 4.1/5

 

  • Ease of use

No one would opt for the platform that has complex setups and manages things. Ease of use is a straightforward concept means how easy the final product (website) is to use by the intended users.

How easy to use is Shopify?

As Shopify is a subscription-based online tool, you just need to visit ‘Shopify.com’, click the signup button, go through a basic setup, and you’re done.

Even though along the way through the initial setup wizard, Shopify will ask about the nature/purpose of your store (what you’re planning to sell ), and giving you some overall tips to which design/structure to choose and how to set up everything.

Overall, the whole process is very easy and open, and most importantly, you don’t need any design or site-building skills in order to get through it, with no unexpected interruptions.

Ratings: 4.6/5

How easy to use is Woo-Commerce ?

Since Woo-Commerce is not a subscription-based solution like Shopify, therefore you need to handle a couple of things before you ever get to work with it.

Although working with Woo Commerce on daily basis is just simple as with Shopify, but setting up the store isn’t.

Mainly you need to complete the following :

  • Sign up for a hosting account
  • Get a domain name
  • Install WordPress
  • Install WooCommmerce
  • Find and install a WordPress theme

So if you have good technical skills then WooCommerce is the option you can choose for your e-commerce business.

Ratings: 4.0/5

 

  • Customer Support?

You may never know when suddenly an issue takes a birth. So everyone prefers the platform which gives 24/7 customer support.

Shopify’s Support

Shopify is famous for its high-quality customer care. Their every client gets the benefit of 24/7 access to customer service. In case if any queries or issue arrives then they are solved immediately via (email, open chat).

Besides that, you can also get access to an extensive knowledge base that covers some of the common user questions and problem solutions.

Ratings: 4.6/5

WooCommerce’s Support

On the other hand, WooCommerce is a free WordPress plugin. It relies on its large community of benevolent geeks because it doesn’t have any official support unless you purchase a WooTheme. But there are plenty of forums with guides and technical step-by-steps documentations out there.

Ratings: 3.8/5

 

  • Pricing?

The question everyone’s been curious about; How much does it cost?

Honestly, Shopify’s pricing is very simple and direct. While WooCommerce’s isn’t. On the one hand, WooCommerce is a free open source software plugin, but at the same time, you have to consider the additional costs that go along with making an online store (like hosting, the cost of a theme, a domain name, any additional extensions, and an SSL certificate). Which also include the hours of time you spend to create a store on WooCommerce.

Shopify delivers you a single, out-of-the-box solution with just a few pricing correspondences. You sign up, then you get to use your shiny new e-commerce store right away since everything you need is included from the get-go (hours of time is saved).

 

  Software Hosting Subdomain SSL Certificate Top-level Domain
Shopify                                      $29/ month Included free $9/ year
Woo-Commerce $0 $5-$100 / month (via 3rd party) n/a $100+ / year (via 3rd party) $9+ / year (via 3rd party)

 

As you can see from the above table that the WooCommerce software is free, but running an e-commerce store costs basically the same as Shopify, if not more.

Last but not the least, every e-commerce platform charge you transaction fees. They will always charge you a small fee (for processing the payment, delivering the money to your account, etc.). Usually, the fee sits around 2%-3% per transaction.

Ratings Shopify & WooCommerce:   4.3/5

 

  • SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the online visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s unpaid results—often referred to as “natural”, “organic”, or “earned” results.

It is a discipline of making the content user-friendly and easily understandable by search engines. Any website requires a strong SEO to become popular in the market.

Shopify’s SEO

As Shopify is hosted platform, it offers each of its merchant rapid loading web pages. As a result, online stores stands a better chance of ranking well and leading customers to conversions.

Ratings: 4.0/5

WOO’s SEO

Woo Commerce gives you more SEO-specific option overall, because of the fact that it is built on top of WordPress. But the only problem is that your website’s speed mostly depends on the hosting you go with.

Ratings: 4.0/5

 

  • Payment Gateways

It is a merchant service provided by an e-commerce platform that authorizes credit- card or direct payments.

Shopify Payment

Shopify offers 100+ payment gateways to accept payment from all over the world. It also has its own payment method knows as Shopify Payment, which is powered by Stripe.

Shopify also allows you to get involved with third-party payment gateways, but it will charge an extra 2% fees on each transaction. This extra charge can be reduced to 0.5% by choosing Advanced Shopify plan.

Ratings: 4.1/5

WOO’s Payment

WooCommerce also offers many payment gateways all popular and even has support for many regional and less popular payment service. As there is no restriction on entry, any payment company can create add-ons for WooCommerce and provide support for it. WooCommerce never charges you a transaction fee on your store.

Ratings: 4.0/5

 

  • Uptime & PageSpeed

If your website’s server is down or your website’s page loading speed is not that good enough, then you might face many difficulties like (low search ranking, less traffic).

Shopify

As it is a hosted solution, you don’t need to worry about the uptime of the website. Shopify takes all the responsibility to make sure that your online store is always available. 99.98% guaranteed uptime is delivered by Shopify, and pages-speed of your website depends on the type of theme you choose for your store.

Ratings: 4.4/5

WooCommerce

As WooCommerce is a self-hosted solution its uptime depends entirely on your web hosting service. For maximum uptime, WooCommerce provides a free WordPress theme “Storefront” that offers deep integration.

Page speed of your website varies from the type of theme or template you choose for your online store. Even though there are plugins available in the market to speed up your WooCommerce store.

Ratings: 3.9/5

 

  • Integrations and Add-ons

Whichever platform you use, to grow your e-commerce business you’ll always need third-party tools or services. For example, an accounting software, email marketing tool, analytics tools, currency switcher, etc.

Shopify

Shopify has a collection of many free and premium plugins that extend the functionality of your online store. Shopify’s app store contains both free and paid app.

They have apps for product reviews, discounts, SEO, Multi-country-pricing, edit orders, and more. Pricing for paid add-ons varies and mostly they offer monthly subscriptions.

Ratings: 4.1/5

WooCommerce

As WooCommerce is open source they give you access to more than 50,000 free WordPress plugin. Due to no restriction on entry, there are a lot more integrations and add-ons available for WooCommerce.

They also have paid plugins of the third party to seamlessly integrate with your online store. They have add-ons for performance optimization, payment gateways, lead generation, and many more.

Ratings: 4.5/5

 

  • Scalability

Scalability can make a huge difference for your online store’s profit and growth potential. As your business grows, you may need more resources to handle new challenges and target.

Without scaling, a business can slowly plateau or become outdated — especially in the competitive world of eCommerce.

Shopify

Infrastructure of Shopify can handle your growing business without you having to worry about technical parts, downtimes, backups, updates or security.

Once your business starts growing, you can simply upgrade your Shopify plans. They also offer enterprise services as part of the Shopify Plus plan.

Ratings: 4.3/5

WooCommerce

As WooCommerce is self-hosted platform it makes you responsible for managing and maintaining backups, updates, security of your website. You may run out of resources as your online stores start getting more traffic.

Your WooCommerce hosting costs will increase, but you will have better control of resources, so you can make sure that you’re not paying for resources that you don’t require.

Ratings: 3.9/5

 

  • Security

Security is a major consideration when it comes to running an online store. How secured my data is? Can I securely process credit and debit cards? Can it be hacked easily? Is the platform PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard) complaint? These are some question you must be asking yourself as an online store owner.

Shopify

Shopify provides a level 1 PCI DSS compliant. They are responsible for maintaining the security of payments on the checkouts, which means if something goes wrong then you are not at all blamed for the same. With Shopify, you also get free SSL certificate with all their plans.

Ratings: 4.7/5

WooCommerce

With WooCommerce you’re responsible for hosting the website, and if you get hacked nobody’s there you can blame. As its open source, it doesn’t provide PCI compliant. If you want your online store to be secured, you’ll need to pay for the same.

Ratings: 4.0/5

 

Conclusion

POINTS SHOPIFY WOO-COMMERCE
Design 4.7/5 4.1/5
Ease of use 4.6/5 4.0/5
Support 4.6/5 3.8/5
Pricing 4.3/5 4.3/5
SEO 4.0/5 4.0/5
Payment Gateways 4.1/5 4.0/5
Uptime & Page speed 4.4/5 3.9/5
Integration & Add-ons 4.1/5 4.5/5
Scalability 4.3/5 3.9/5
Security 4.7/5 4.0/5
   
AVERAGE 4.38 4.05

Both Shopify and WooCommerce are great e-commerce platforms – although each of them has their own set of pros and cons.

If you are looking for an economical solution, and you want to have full control of your online store, then WooCommerce is the best platform for you.

If you want something that’s completely easy, that has infinite scalability, which doesn’t require any technical knowledge, then Shopify is the better platform for you.

 

10 Reasons Why Shopify is the best option !!

Last updated on June 27th, 2018 at 10:32 am

In our 21st century, no one has time to physically go shopping, instead of that people are getting more and more attracted towards online shopping or E-commerce(in technical term).

And it’s not at all a bad idea if you are thinking of a startup or small business for selling your product online. All you need is a platform, which help’s you to establish your own brand. Shopify is one of that platform that you must have a look.

 

WHAT IS SHOPIFY??

Shopify is a cool E-commerce platform that allows you to set up an online store to sell your products. It is all-in-one web-based platform that let the entrepreneur run their own online store.

Those days are left far behind when people had to worry about setting up a website from a scratch, just to start an e-commerce business. Because Shopify had made that difficult task a cakewalk for us.

HTML, CSS, JS, etc are the programming languages which are used for appearance and designing your website. Don’t worry if you haven’t yet heard about these names, Shopify still allows you to have full control over the appearance and setup of your store(without having knowledge of those programming languages).

Now let’s know the features that Shopify provides and why anyone should opt for Shopify rather than any other platform.

 

10 Reasons Why Shopify is a better option!!

1)  Hosted Solution

Shopify is completely reliable as it hosts over 500,000 stores. Shopify was the first hosted e-commerce website solution to use a Content Delivery Network (CDN).

A CDN is a large network of servers placed across the world to ensure your customers can get your online store loaded quickly, no matter where they are. While choosing an E-commerce platform one of the aspects you must know is the difference between ‘Self Hosted’ and ‘Hosted’.

 

Self-Hosted

In ‘Self-Hosted’ e-commerce solution you download and run the software yourself.  You need to set up everything from scratch, also managing the hardware infrastructure and operating system on which your e-commerce website is going to work on.

In case if you need help when your website run into an error, there is no centralized support system you can contact. In terms of security, uptime and managing traffic self-hosted is usually less preferred.

Hosted

In ‘Hosted’ you don’t have to worry about managing the server, security, uptime, traffics, etc. Every technical aspect is managed by the platform provider. The hosted application can be deployed easily as compared to the conventional software.

These type of applications are managed by the service provider so, they are updated and patched with the most stable version and is backed by continual technical and customer support.

 

2) Supports Multiple Languages

Suppose you have an online store which is selling its product in Canada whose native language is English or French and you are planning to expand your business in Germany, then it would be preferable if your website appears to Germany folks in their native language (German).

Based on the data of Gallup survey of language preferences[PDF] and  Common Sense Advisory surveyed  2,430 web consumers in eight countries :

  • 9/10 Internet users said that, when given a choice of languages, they always visited a website in their own language.
  • 42% said they never purchase products and services in other languages.
  • 72.1% of consumers spend most or all of their time on websites in their own language.
  • 72.4% of consumers said they would be more likely to buy a product with information in their own language.
  • 56.2% of consumers said that the ability to obtain information in their own language is more important than price.

Reference

In Shopify, there are many plugins available like ‘Langify’ (manual translate), ‘Panda Language Translate’, ‘Multi Lingo’ it allows the merchant to translate their storefront into multiple languages. Although it is preferred to use the manually translation app rather than the auto-translation app to translate your store.

Having the storefront in customers own native language creates a friendly impression, which in future can increase your business rate.

3)  100+ Professional Themes

“First impression is the last impression”

When any user visits your website the first thing that comes up is the design or look and feel of the store. So it would create favorable influence on the user if your store has a nice quality design and a good theme.

Shopify has a number of feature-rich, beautiful themes which are developed by professional web-designers. The design of your website always plays an essential role when it comes to e-commerce.

Thousands of dollars are being spent by the store owner to get their store designed by professionals. But if you are a Shopify user you get most of the themes designed by the professionals for free.

There is a range of free and paid theme in Shopify to find the right look and feel for your online store. Here are some of the examples of Shopify’s themes

  • Narrative (free)
  • Debut (free)
  • Jumpstart (free)
  • Brooklyn (free)
  • Boundless (free)
  • Parallax
  • Empire
  • Canopy
  • Retina

These themes are even categorized according to design or product your store is selling. Shopify makes sure that themes are modern, clean (no bug), easily customizable, responsive design, cross-border compatibility and many more.

 

4)  100+ Payment Gateways

A payment gateway is simply a software application, which conduit between your e-commerce website and the bank that authorizes(or declines) your customer’s credit card payment. It is the final step of the sales process, without it you won’t be able to securely charge your customer when they purchase any items from your online store.

Shopify supports all the well-known payment methods such as

-Credit & Debit Cards              – Cash on Delivery (COD)

-Net Banking                              – Wallets

-Bank Transfer                          – UPI

-EMI’s                                          – PayPal

 

Some of the well-known payment gateways supported by Shopify are:

[Link of all the payment] gateways Shopify supports

You get the ultimate freedom for choosing the right payment gateway options for your customer provided by Shopify. Shopify even has its own built-in payment system powered by Stripe.

Here are some of the reasons provided by Shopify for using their own Payment platform :

  • Shopify plan transaction fee is now free.
  • Lower costs with an online credit card rate of 2.4% + 20p (Basic), 2.1% + 20p (Professional), or 1.8% + 20p (Unlimited), and no hidden charges or extra fees
  • Managing of orders, payments and payouts can be done directly through Shopify.

 

5)  Manage store with your Smartphone

Are you worried about your online store while enjoying your holidays or trip with friends or family?

Not to worry anymore now onwards, because the Shopify mobile app lets you manage your orders, product, staffs, and customers from anywhere just with your smartphone.

Manage Products in-app

→  This mobile app will let you upload your products images.

→  Set the features and pricing details of the product.

→  Adding the products to collections.

Process your orders with few taps

→ Completion of order, refund to customers, or archive orders.

→  Manage tags and notes.

→ Conversion details can be viewed.

Respond to real-time information or queries         

→ See the live sales or visitors traffic

→ Get notified instantly when you receive the order.

→ Get in touch with your staff members.

 

6)  Unlimited Products and Bandwidth

→ There are no restrictions on the number of products you sell on your Shopify store. Which means if you start your store with just 100 products and if you want to add some more 200-300 product items in your store no one will stop you doing that.

→ No one will charge you if your online store is visited by hundreds, thousands or crores of visitors. There is no limitation on the how many online visitors go through your store, and also how many files or photos you upload to the store.

 

7)  Integrate with Dropshippers

Drop shipping is a method in which you don’t have to keep the products in stock. Instead, you directly get in touch with the wholesale supplier that stocks its own inventory.

So whenever you receive an order from the online store, you forward that particular order and shipment details to the supplier and they ship the goods or product directly to the customer.

Oberlo is the app for Shopify users, to easily import and dropship the product.

There are very few platforms like Shopify that provide drop shipping integration. Here are some benefits of drop shipping.

→ Investment is very less as you don’t have to set up an inventory.

→ There is no limitation on items you want to sell, you can offer thousands of items to your customer.

→ Nothing to worry about manpower, as it is all handled by the supplier’s side, which eventually frees up your time to concentrate on your marketing strategy, operations, and customer service.

To know more about drop shipping you can read the blog  “A brief Idea About Drop Shipping”

 

8)  24/7 Support

Shopify will always be there to help you and your customer whenever needed. Here’s how

Open Chat

Team Shopify is available 24/7 on live chat. Isn’t that convincing, if you or your customer get immediate answers to your questions and queries.

E-mail

Suppose you have some questions, but there is no requirement of getting that answer immediately. In that case, you can opt for their e-mail support option, just mention whatever inquiries or issues you have in an e-mail and Shopify will be at your service with all relevant information within 24 hours.

Phone Call

Don’t feel like typing up entire queries or problems?? Not an issue!! The “anytime” helping guys are always there, you can call them whenever you are facing a trouble, even if it’s 3 AM!

 

9)  Gift cards

It is a special type of product, whose value (amount) can be used as payment. You can also issue a gift-card to customers for free as a reward for using your store. Your customer can use the gift card to make a purchase from your store both online and in person.

Your customers can even send the gift-card to other users so that they could attract more users to their store. A gift card holds a balance (paid by the owner of gift-card), which could be spent over more than one order.

When making a purchase in your store, a customer can redeem the value of a gift card by entering its unique code at checkout, and if the payment amount exceeds from the amount in a gift card, then the customer will be prompted to choose a second payment method.

Click the link to learn more about Shopify Gift-Cards and how it can boost up your E-commerce business.

 

10)  14-Days Free Trial

You cannot learn swimming unless you jump into the water and try once yourself. That’s why Shopify gives you 14 days free trial to have a personal experience with them. So one should try Shopify platform at least once if they are planning to start an e-commerce business.

Click this image to get started.

It hardly takes a couple of days to start and set up an online store with Shopify.

So why wait and watch other reaching and achieving heights of success from e-commerce business, get a start now by registering yourself in Shopify.

 

 

 

 

 

Top Considerations While Accessing New Global Markets

It is easier than before to leverage global markets today. Social media scales geographic borders, highlighting brands in international markets more easily than ever. Although gaining visibility is comparatively easy, SMBs need to establish a strong foundation in place for long-term scalability in global ventures.

 Merchandise Products for New Markets

Neglecting merchandising process is a huge mistake for those entering new markets. With local elements in creative visualization, customer service and order processing, merchandising needs to be accorded huge importance too. Investing in people and collaboration tools can help entrepreneurs strike good relationships with the new markets.

When merchandising, the top considerations should be:

  • Climate – Be sure to account for the climate of the target market
  • Competition – Look at how the competition has positioned itself with the products they are selling through different channels
  • Consumer Trends – A product that is popular domestically doesn’t always succeed internationally. Do thorough consumer testing and surveys in the region before launching the product there. Most businesses target regions where they have witnessed sales before they launch the product, specifically in that region.
  • Religious Affiliations– Religion in some markets play a huge role in using some products. The products should not be in way marketed to offend religious sentiments

A Sound Cross-Border Commerce Strategy for Success

Some factors need to be respected and aligned with, for consistent success in cross-border commerce for accessing certain geographies for business. Some of those factors include:

  • Hire International Support

Hire high-value team members, in-house or freelance. Outsource the support work to them for competent international support services. Likewise you might need language support in some countries, especially if the local language is something else than English.

Support your lean business when it goes global, maintaining brand standards elsewhere too. Hire competent freelancers only for your business tasks.

  • Double Check Product Restrictions in each Country

While most products are inherently safe to sell across borders, double-check to see if there are any product restrictions in any country.

Some verticals like apparel, beauty and cosmetics, consumer electronics and health goods have particular restrictions by country.

  • Ensure the Technology is Scalable

Make sure that you have an e-store powered by technology that is scalable and not at all cost-prohibitive. One should select a platform that features out-of-the-box attributes required for standard processes in cross-border commerce without having to incur additional monthly costs.

The technology should be able to incorporate basic functionalities that can process discounts, coupons, emails for abandoned carts, analytics, customer groups, shipping, and payment etc. Going global without having the support of a strong technology platform is the onset of a huge disaster. You may be able to sell products, but rising costs, inefficiency in efforts and even result in lower margins would hinder you consistently.

  • Divide Processes and Hire Resources

For SMBs, going global is a big step and as they grow, the workload grows too. SMBs are usually lean and managed by a handful of stakeholders.

One needs to take ownership of the business but one should also understand it is not a one-person job. Do not restrict bringing on help for scaling processes and one can use assistance where the internal team lacks in terms of skills and resources.

While exploring cross-border opportunities, the right manpower and resources in the local areas are extremely important in getting the business major visibility