Thanks for joining us

Follow up to Online Marketing in Changing Times

Thank you so much for joining us last week for our Meetup on Online Marketing in Changing Times.

Our panelists

Osa Gaius: Founder of Parrotmob

osa@parrotmob.com

Osa is the founder and CEO of ParrotMob, a SMS marketing platform for Shopify stores. Before starting ParrotMob, Osa led engineering teams at Mailchimp and BlackRock.

Jayna Grassel: Senior Director, Marketing Strategy at Bounteous

jayna.grassel@bounteous.com

Jayna Grassel oversees digital marketing programs for enterprise-level clients. As a Senior Director of Marketing Strategy, she works on eCommerce, financial, healthcare and B2B clients to design short and long-term digital strategies with a creative bend. Jayna is a trainer at heart and speaks at local meet-ups and national conferences, including MozCon. Her specialities include Paid Media, SEO, Local Search and holistic web marketing. In her spare time, she likes to go fly fishing, volunteer on local community boards and crochet.

Bob Strachan: Founding Partner of Metacake

bob@metacake.com

Bob started his career in strategy consulting for US and European multinationals all across Asia with the Monitor Group out of their Hong Kong office. Bob started his first ecommerce business in 1997 and since then has been working to help companies leverage technology strategy into real growth. Bob started several businesses and currently co-owns Metacake, a leading ecommerce growth team that helps brands unlock ecommerce opportunities and drive sales growth online. Bob has worked with some of the fastest-growing and most influential brands in the world including - Tony Robbins, P&G, Elvis Presley’s Graceland, Dr. Axe, Groove Rings, Walmart and many more.

Mark Lupton: Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify

mark@amplifycoo.com

Mark Lupton is Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify. He helps small businesses find hidden profits and avoid cash flow problems. Mark also serves as co-host of the Austin Shopify Meetup (1000+ members). He holds an MBA in entrepreneurship and engineering bachelor’s degree.


Discussion notes

How has the marketing atmosphere changed in the last three months?

Osa Gaius:
  • The shift from retail-first to online-first has forced merchants to develop new marketing and sales channels.

    • Grocery stores → online butchers

  • Online brands have the hand up to develop and take away some new shoppers

Jayna Grassel
  • We’ve seen irregular shopping patterns with Black Friday & Cyber Monday-like conversion rates.

    • Increased basket sizes and more demand for essential items and niche products (e.g. at-home nail kits, hair clippers, patio furniture)

  • 3 months into the pandemic, we’re seeing ad fatigue over safety messages.

  • With consumers streaming more online TV and a growth in screen time, brands have more ad options on streaming platforms. More inventory = a wider brand reach and more impressions.

Bob Strachan:

  • A lot of changes and a lot of opportunities

  • Customers are looking for something different with regard to brand messaging

  • Great opportunity for brands to stand out and gain traction

  • You can’t build a brand on a marketplace

    • Simply transactional

  • Multiple channels help diversify your risk

  • DTC channel keeps you closest to your customers

What should we be doing differently right now?

Osa Gaius:
  • We should be making sure to prioritize deep customer relationships over sales.

    • Need to be constantly checking in with them

  • Brands are forced to think about their DTC channel

  • Cut through the noise with authenticity -- be honest

Jayna Grassel
  • According to a Gartner report, 60% of consumers prefer in-store shopping. With limited retail options available, customers will be moving online, many for the first time.

    • Brands should develop strategies that replicate in-store experiences and be intentional with their online storefronts to cater to new online shoppers.

    • This means investing in marketing and on-site development items:

      • strong product visuals

      • decision-making tools

      • user reviews

      • reorganizing site technology to focus on present realities

  • People are questioning everything so you have to stay authentic

    • Zoom comercial vs commercially shot video

  • Segment your users -- don’t hit them with the normal flow

Bob Strachan:
  • Survive then think as long term as you can

  • Listening to customers

  • Be real/authentic

  • Be kind

  • Step back and assess the "health" of your brand

    • Do my customers know why I love serving them

  • Focus on authentic post sale relationships not just acquisition

  • Every action (email, ad, campaign) should add value

What tactics should we be considering when approaching our customers right now?

Osa Gaius
  • We should be approaching customers where they are (at home and on their smartphones).

  • Email needs to be more like content/organic social marketing

    • The reason needs to be clear

  • Try just basic social networking to share your experience

Jayna Grassel:
  • June Week 1, we saw customers have more predictable, consistent shopping patterns. Optimism is returning and people are less worried about stockpiling items.

  • In the “new normal”, brands should focus on being honest and relatable in their marketing.

    • Out of touch brands stick out in a world where priorities for most consumers have shifted drastically from earlier in the year.

  • Companies need to be transparent:

    • Communicate about supply chain, shipping delays, in-stock items and alternative pick-up methods like curbside pickup or Buy Online Pick Up in Store.

    • Brands should strategically plan when and where to inform users.

      • Is that information best served in an ad, on a site banner, or in a thank-you email, post purchase?

      • They just need to be properly informed

  • Be willing to listen and adapt messaging to avoid fatigue

  • Return on investment isn’t the only lens on advertising anymore -- need to take a stand

  • Contests

Bob Strachan:
  • It's ok to sell

  • selling should = helping

  • Be real

  • Prove that you are a brand that matters not just trying to make $$

  • Take the time to get to know them better

  • Do things that don't scale

  • Focus on the customers that you already have first - esp. the ones that really like you!

  • Bring in your team to see what creative things you can do

  • Influencers

What is the most important metric to track?

Osa Gaius:
  • Customer Conversions per month

  • NPS -- What do people think about your brand?

Jayna Grassel
  • Retention

    • Identify, segment, and market to first-time customers who purchased in the last 3 months differently than their typical customer base.

  • Re-engage loyalty audiences

    • Win-back campaigns for lapsed customers who haven’t purchased in 3 to 6 months

    • Extending loyalty point expiration dates and rewarding customers with extra points

    • Providing premium customer service options

  • Every business has different goals so different metrics depending what that goal is

Bob Strachan:
  • Social channels & store engagement (traffic/clicks, video views, time on site, etc.)

  • Customer satisfaction scores

  • Email opens/clicks

  • AOV - can you encourage your best customers to spend more with you

Thanks for joining us

Follow up to Inventory Management

Thank you so much for joining us last week for our Meetup on Inventory management during COVID-19.

Our panelists

Chris Jacobs: Customer Success Lead at Katana

chris.jacobs@katanamrp.com

Chris Jacobs is the Head of Customer Success at Katana MRP, which is an Inventory and Production management software for scaling D2C manufacturing businesses selling online. He previously worked in Pipedrive (Sales CRM software) and also previously owned a direct to consumer brand manufacturing company making products for the extreme sports industry.

Jason Stuckey: GM, North America at Linnworks

With over 10+ years experience in digital branding/marketing, ecommerce strategy, and back office operations, Jason Stuckey has been on the front lines of some of the biggest movements in retail. He has helped launch more than 12 high-profile online businesses with celebrities and influencers such as Kate Hudson, Michael B. Jordan, and Rihanna. As the General Manager at Linnworks, he is focused on delivering a Total Commerce solution to Brands and Retailers looking to thrive in a multichannel world.

Josh Bartel: Co-Founder & CEO at Hydrian

josh@hydrian.com

Josh is the co-founder and CEO of Hydrian. He has successfully managed large teams in order fulfillment, inventory planning, and sales operations for McMaster-Carr and other distributors at the multi-billion dollar scale. He is the co-founder and former CEO of Sanitopia, an e-commerce company catering to home healthcare professionals. Josh graduated from Stanford University.

Cat Fogarty-Nyman: Founder at eCatalyst

cat@ecatalyst.co

Cat Fogarty Nyman has worked with hundreds of eCommerce brands over the last several years from start ups to established brands. She gives her clients a crystal ball into their business allowing them to understand the true impact of proposed changes on performance and cash flow. She has an extensive background in automating back office processes and managing remote teams.

Mark Lupton: Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify

mark@amplifycoo.com

Mark Lupton is Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify. He helps small businesses find hidden profits and avoid cash flow problems. Mark also serves as co-host of the Austin Shopify Meetup (1000+ members). He holds an MBA in entrepreneurship and engineering bachelor’s degree.


Discussion notes

How has this change impacted other businesses?

Chris Jacobs:
  • Digitally transforming and moving online is an essential strategy for survival for small manufacturers

  • Global supply chains experience shortages with suppliers and unpredictable lead times, and forces companies to make pivots in what products they offer, or scale down what products they make.

    • We see a rise in the localization (and in-sourcing) of the small manufacturers who now have less competition against big business, more flexibility, and enormous increases in demand from the direct to consumer markets.

    • Allowing small businesses to take away sales from global corporations reliant on supply chains

  • Pivoting: apparel companies now making face masks, and Distilleries now manufacturing hand Sanitizers

Jason Stuckey:
  • Ecommerce has gone both ways

    • Luxury goods have struggled as funds tighten

    • Brands who pivot have seen increases across the board -- not just on their new items such as PPE

    • 60% of people have said that they are fundamentally changing the way they shop

  • Brick and mortar have been devastated

    • Silver lining: COVID has given them the opportunity to retool towards the new way of commerce which is the direction we were headed anyway

Josh Bartel:
  • Clients with brick and mortar and ecommerce have dramatically shifted online

    • 3 year trend in 3 months

  • Businesses with a drop in sales see an increase in inventory

    • Work with your vendors to get better terms

  • People who have boomed had supply crunches and were missing out on sales

Cat Fogarty-Nyman:
  • We have to think holistically about inventory management

    • Are we still covering advertising and overhead?

  • Production hasn’t been as tampered as delivery

    • Longer lead times means longer cash cycles which mean tighter cash crunches

  • You don’t want to do steep discounts so look in other places for cash

    • Financing from EIDL is so cheap that it makes sense to take it

What does “good” inventory management mean now?

Chris Jacobs:
  • Systems:

    • Integrated inventory management that gives you a live wholistic picture

      • One system that links sales, manufacturing, inventory and purchasing

  • Business:

    • Customers get their products fast

    • Don’t have too much cash tied up in inventory

    • You need to have a plan

Jason Stuckey:
  • Consumers expect to shop where they want to shop (Amazon, facebook, instagram, google, walmart ect)

    • Diversifying where you sell your product so it gets in front of your customer and making sure that inventory is connected to that is essential

    • The different channels are launching marketplaces

  • As a seller you need to have a handle on the inventory that you’re ordering

    • Find ways to unlock it and be creative with bundles

  • There is no set it and let it go with any of the tech platforms that you have

Josh Bartel:
  • Vendor communication is key!

  • For sales that are down reach out to vendors and ask for changes or cancelations

  • You need to be on top of forecasting and doing it more frequently

    • Your forecast should be informed by lead times

  • If you sell apparel there is very little profit left in selling n95 masks -- demand has died off

Cat Fogarty-Nyman:
  • Good inventory management means you are tracking the full cost of every item purchased and sold

    • Cost of goods

    • Shipping & duties

    • Marketing

    • Packaging

    • Print materials

  • Make sure you are making adjustments at least quarterly to make sure you are spending efficiently

What Should I be tracking now?

Chris Jacobs:
  • Sales:

    • Which products are performing and which are not

    • Cut the products that don’t sell

  • Operations:

    • Understand the cost of scarce resources you are purchasing

  • Increase the frequency of checking both

Jason Stuckey:
  • You need to be focusing on your brand and value prop

    • Define your Brand - Brand = Power

    • Build a strategy

      • Pick the right channels over spreading across all channels

      • Focus on new net growth

      • Elevate the customer experience in the channel

      • Authenticity matters

    • Build operational capacity

      • Build capacity by automating

      • Deliver on customer expectations

Josh Bartel:
  • Update your sales forecast and target inventory weekly

Cat Fogarty-Nyman:
  • Total inventory on hand

  • Total vendor deposits

  • Total inventory in transit

  • Work in progress

How should my ordering process change?

Chris Jacobs:
  • Demand based ordering

  • Having a number of suppliers for the same products diversifies your risk.

  • Continually seeking out efficiency in your supply chain

Jason Stuckey:
  • Self test your ordering system through delivery/return to find inefficiencies

    • Automate out inefficiencies

  • Focus on good leadership and find little wins

Josh Bartel:
  • Increase order frequency with smaller quantities

  • Manually adjust lead times in your systems

Cat Fogarty-Nyman:
  • You should be scenario planning

    • How is COVID going to impact the demand for my product?

    • Build a 6-12 month forecast

      • Use three scenarios (Bronze, Silver, Gold)

How Do I know if my systems are off?

Chris Jacobs:
  • You have to delay customer orders

  • You have large pile ups of inventory

Jason Stuckey:
  • You need the combination of humans + tools to ensure you have process integrity

    • You need data quality assurance as well as product quality assurance

Josh Bartel:
  • There are two big risks right now:

    • Recent sales are not indicative of future sales

    • Lead times that are delayed are not indicative of future lead times skewing ordering requirements

  • If there is excess inventory

    • Increase price

Cat Fogarty-Nyman:
  • You need to be reviewing your Gross Profit Margin

    • If it varies wildly it is usually a sign of poor inventory management

What are some good systems options for me?

Chris Jacobs:
  • If you are manufacturing: Katanamrp.com

Jason Stuckey:
  • Every business is unique and there are no systems that can do it all

  • Outline the 3-5 must haves and stack the rest on a “nice-to-have” list

  • Find one that hits your must haves and fits your growth profile

Cat Fogarty-Nyman:
  • Partial to Dear and Cin7

  • Before you move to a software:

    • What are your needs now?

    • What will your needs be in 3 years?

  • Brace yourself for the time and effort it takes to move to a new system

  • An important part of inventory management is where it is stored -- make sure it is the appropriate space

  • Vet your different options

  • Revenue is vanity, profit is sanity, cash is reality

Thanks for joining us

Follow up to Financing and Cash Flow during Covid-19

Thank you so much for joining us last week for our Meetup on Financing and Cash Flow during Covid-19.

Our panelists

Amy Kanzleiter: Small Business Accountant at Acuity

akanzleiter@acuity.co

Founder of Mamie Boutique 11 yrs, a multichannel apparel business, that she sold. She is now an e-commerce accountant, large companies - she works with businesses between $0-100mil in sales annually and has managed teams of accountants in the process.

Mike Deeks: Account Director at Clearbanc

michael.deeks@clearbanc.com

Mike Deeks is an Account Director for Clearbanc, the fastest, most affordable way to fund your business eCommerce. He maintains over 100 companies in his portfolio ranging from $250,000 to $5,000,000, all receiving funding without giving up equity or guarantees.

Joseph Dunne: Assistant Vice President at Guaranty Bank & Trust

jdunne@gnty.com

Assistant VP at Guaranty bank, a relationship bank. Rising star in small business lending. He supports small to mid-sized businesses in Texas and has been boots on the ground with PPP, EIDL and all the other gov’t lending options. He’s passionate about Faith, connecting with people, getting to learn what makes people tick, being in the outdoors, reading, rock climbing, and listening to stories – narratives both from people and businesses.

Mark Lupton: Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify

Mark@amplifycoo.com

Mark Lupton is Partner & Ecommerce Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify. He helps small businesses find hidden profits and avoid cash flow problems. Mark also serves as co-host of the Austin Shopify Meetup (1000+ members). He holds an MBA in entrepreneurship and engineering bachelor’s degree.


Discussion notes

What is the latest on government funding options?

Joseph Dunne
  • The Paycheck protection program is still in effect and is taking applications, there is around $50 billion still unused.

  • Turn around time from application to funding is about 7 days with Guaranty Bank

  • Contact Joseph about getting PPP through Guaranty Bank & Trust

Amy Kanzleiter
  • There could be a possible third round of funding. As of May 8th, there was still funding available in the current round.

  • If you have not gotten PPP, try reapplying with your bank or a different bank. Bank by bank restrictions have been easing as to who they will grant funds.

  • Focus on a paper trail to prove forgiveness

Mark Lupton
  • My clients have seen faster PPP success with smaller banks

  • Ask local banks about their PPP availability for non-customers

What other financing options are available?

Joseph Dunne
  • Alternative Government option: Main Street Lending program, which is catered to bigger companies.

  • The loan size ranges from $1-25 million and the repayment is over 4 years as opposed to the 2 years with the PPP.

  • Local banks that are still looking to make loans at this time.

  • Times are unique so I can’t say banks will always or often extend credit to hold a company over but it’s worth asking

Amy Kanzleiter
Mike Deeks
  • Clearbanc funds core growth functions like:

    • Marketing dollars and software

    • Inventory

    • Product launches

  • Fast turnaround time (record of 6 hrs!)

What is the right financing for me?

Joseph Dunne
  • PPP loan is a good option even if it’s not forgiven. We don’t know how long the recovery is going to take, so even if you have to pay it back over 2 years at 1% interest, that’s better than having no cash at all.

  • The answer really comes down to rate/repayment term/recourse or non-recourse.

Amy Kanzleiter
  • Credit Cards 30 - 60 days - cover short cash cycles

  • Revolving line of credit - smoothly annual seasonality

  • One-time Term Loan - Bridging to new profitable normal

Mike Deeks
  • You can OVER-leverage your business

  • You can never have too much ACCESS to capital

  • There is a relationship component of financing

Mark Lupton
  • Don’t let coronavirus be the first step in a vicious debt cycle. Have a plan.

  • You need a plan to your new, profitable normal.

    • If you don’t currently have the tools to build a plan, it truly is a vital investment in your business.

Where can I find hidden cash in my business?

Amy Kanzleiter
  • Pivot on your core strength.

    • Make a list of pivot ideas, discuss with the team. Make an action plan.

  • You are the best driver of your revenue

    • Delegate non-revenue driving tasks to others or banker or accountant

  • File for your tax refund now

    • If you did not receive funding you are potentially eligible for a tax credit

  • Ask for Deferrals:

    • Federal Social Security tax deferral

    • Debt payments

    • Rent

    • Inventory

    • anything...

  • If you’re doing pay cuts, have a weighted pay cut system where those making the most have larger percentages cut vs lower wage employees.

Mark Lupton
  • There are lasting cuts and temporary cash sources

  • Lasting:

    • No. 1 place to find hidden cash is with your customers.

      • The way customers relate to your brand/product has changed for better or worse.

      • Focus less on optimizing ROAS around past campaign success and more on the new normal

    • Variable costs cuts (COGS, Shipping, etc.) create lasting savings

      • Deep shipping costs / packaging optimization

      • Negotiate down minimum order quantities (MOQ)

    • Overhead

      • Look at every line item on your P&L in quickbooks and review each transaction -- may be thousands hiding

  • Temporary sources (buy you time to get to your new normal. )

    • External financing

    • Deferrals

    • Discounting / Bundling excess stock

Joseph Dunne

We are encouraging people to cut costs as much as possible but also suspending loan payments for at least 90 days, which can free up cash in the present. Partial paycheck cuts instead of complete job cuts are being used to free up cash also.

Mike Deeks

I’ve seen clients completely repurpose facilities and production to make masks and other needed products during this time

What do I need to be tracking?

Amy Kanzleiter
  • Once you receive PPP or EIDL

    • You are on an 8 week clock and it's important to start gathering and keeping track of the expenditures.

    • Focus on the loan forgiveness calculations.

    • Reach out to your bank for guidance.

  • A 12-week cash plan is key right now. monitor cash tightly.

  • Moving forward - plan for uncertainty including resource and supply chain interruptions.

Mark Lupton
  • Top 3 things to track and plan:

    • 1 - Cash Balance (bank account minus outstanding debt)

    • 2 - Cash Flow (withdrawals & deposits on your accounts)

    • 3 - Cash Runway (time until you run out of cash OR want more for growth)

  • Free 13-week cash flow planner at www.amplify.business

Joseph Dunne
  • For the PPP program, we are asking our customers to track where the money is going (payroll, rent, utilities) like your life depending on it.

    • Ultimately the government has to decide what is forgivable.

Financing and Cash Flow during COVID-19

Austin #ShopifyMeetup May 2020

Tuesday, May 12th we're going to meet to discuss Financing & Cash Flow during COVID-19.

Right now, sources of cash are constantly changing. Sales have changed, financing options have changed, payment terms have changed.

So, we’ve gathered a panel of experts and entrepreneurs to discuss managing cash flow and financing options during this season.

We will discuss questions like:

  1. What is the latest on government funding options?

  2. What other financing options are available?

  3. What is the right financing for me?

  4. Where can I find hidden cash in my business?

  5. What do I need to be tracking now?

And we'll be joined by:

  • Mike Deeks Account Director at Clearbanc

  • Amy Kanzleiter Founder at Mamie Boutique and ecommerce accountant and

  • Joseph Dunne Assistant Vice President at Guaranty Bank

  • Mark Lupton Jr. Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify

RSVP


Send us your questions!

You can ask questions during the event, but you can also ask in advance by replying to this message, or by asking in a comment on the Meetup event page.


What I’ve been clicking on this month:

Twenty Bits I Learned About Design Business & Community: a lovely book by Dan Cedarholm, co-founder of Dribbble.

Shopify Compass: live and recorded workshops for merchants by Shopify

Mechanic: a Shopify app of powerful little tasks for your shopify store.

Disabling all apps (GitHub): super helpful snippet for troubleshooting themes. You can disable all apps or one-by-one.

And posters to inspire your #stayathome efforts:

Thank you for joining us

Follow-up to: Ecommerce Shipping in a Pandemic

Thank you so much for joining us last week for our Meetup on Ecommerce Shipping in a Pandemic.

Our panelists

Krish Iyer: Head of Industry Relations & Strategic Partnerships at Shipstation

Krish is the Head of Industry Relations and Strategic Partnerships for ShipStation where he is focused on long-term relationships between e-commerce merchants and e-commerce marketplaces. A respected expert in cross border & marketplace e-commerce, Krish is often quoted in publications such as The Wall Street Journal, DC Velocity, Logistics Management, and Business News Daily. An industry leader with over 18 years of experience, Krish brings perspectives from FedEx, Pitney Bowes, Neopost and ShipStation.

ShipStation is here to offer a helping hand through these challenging times. We’re offering a free 90-day trial for all new customers.

Ryan Zaczynski: Owner / Operator at TAKEITEASYTHURSDAY

His current hustle is BANDLINERS (bandliners.com), a novel product for protecting watch bands that I created, launched, and am currently selling directly to consumers.

I also consult independently for startups in the area of data analysis & strategy, and I'm always on the hunt for new opportunities.

Jay B Sauceda: CEO of Sauceda Industries

Jay B Sauceda is the CEO of Sauceda Industries, services small and mid-market merchants with e-commerce fulfillment solutions that aren't terrible. After a career in advertising, Jay B launched his own store and scaled it to 7 figures. He used his learnings as a merchant to build his 3PL that now services 50+ merchants from around the country.

Benoit des Ligneris: Senior PM of Shipping at Shopify

Benoit has a Ph. D. In physics and a post-doc in distributed computing. He started and sold his computing service company. After working with the acquirer for a few years he launched a new venture in wine and eCommerce in Australia. Deciding to stay in the cold country (Canada) he then joined an eCommerce agency as CTO and joined Shopify later on. An avid reader, writer and learner, lifelong sports enthusiast (marathon, ultra, ironman and other crazy challenges) he is also a focused meditation practitioner and father of three teenagers. He practices daily his awareness, patience and pedagogical skills.

Mark Lupton: Partner & Fractional CFO/COO at Amplify

Mark Lupton serves as Partner & fractional CFO/COO at Amplify. He is an engineer by degree and spent his early career streamlining operations and increasing cash flow for energy businesses. After receiving his MBA from Acton School of Business, he has held various small business consulting roles in ecommerce finance, digital marketing and operational growth strategy. He now resides in Austin, Texas (with his wife, son & dog).


Discussion notes

How should I act?

"Act like you've been here before." - As a store owner, it's important to keep your messaging positive and to create a place of positivity. If you fire sale everything and don't stick to what has made your brand unique, it'll be hard to recover from that when things are all over. (Jay B Suaceda)

The merchant should feel a sense of esprit de corps and that their customers are also feeling that they are in it together with them. You may never have a time ever again where your customer will be as understanding about delivery challenges. (Kirsh Iyer)

How has Government Policy with impacted shipping during COVID19?

You are seeing outbound US Export Services via USPS being suspended indefinitely to about 50 markets, which is forcing merchants/brands to look inward in streamlining their operations to US customers. These countries include Saudi Arabia, South Africa and India. (Krish Iyer)

A lot is changing. What do we need to know about the major carriers (UPS, FedEx, Amazon, etc)

  • Shipping Operations:

    • Domestic seems OK

    • International is chaotic

  • Check your carrier website before shipping

  • Enable local-delivery and find/serve your local customers (Ben des Ligneris)

How has the definition of keeping customers happy with shipping changed?

Over Communicate. Notify your customers of delays to shipments. Offer them an easy ability to cancel an order. Be empathetic that the customer wants to know information more than usual. (Krish Iyer)

BE FORTHCOMING! Don't underestimate customer goodwill in this situation: if they're purchasing, they want to support your business. It's OK to ask them to be patient with respect to potential delays! (Ryan Zaczynski)

Buyers do not expect free and fast shipping anymore. If you have the goods, you have an advantage! (Ben des Ligneris)

"Remember that we're all in this together." - This is a unique situation which we're all experiencing together. Most customers are ok with services slipping. If something is a day or two late, it's going to be ok. (Jay B Sauceda)

Silver Lining: Time for Optimization

"Stop and fix" - If you're in the unique position of having a banner year because of increased sales, it's important to know that the things that worked in your shipping processes when you were small, will 100% break down when you're big. It's better to stop and fix your problems now while goodwill is still high with your customer base. (Jay B Sauceda)

Is my logistics plan optimized? Now might be a good time to reassess things...

  • Is your packaging design optimized for eCommerce?

  • Does your packaging design get as much attention as your product design? As an eCommerce company, it should!!

  • Are you being limited by the locations of your warehouses? The terms of your agreements? (Ryan Zaczynski)

Opportunity is there if you play this time right with sound strategy and the right messaging – we're going to come out of this stronger! (Ryan Zaczynski)

Business survival: (see https://www.shopify.com/covid19 as well when on Shopify) revisit your shipping and delivery strategy

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