The Management Tech You Need to Nail IRCE18
Written by Kelly Gonsalves
IRCE18 is the biggest event for internet retailers this year.
Over 130 information sessions, thousands of presenters, and even more attendees means there’s a lot to do, a lot to learn, and a lot to gain from this year’s Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition.
The goal of the conference is to help internet and ecommerce retailers grow as they encounter new technologies, systems, and methods for running their online business.
But, with so much to do and see, it’ll be hard to catch everything.
Plus, you don’t want to go in blind.
While there’s a ton to learn at IRCE18, you don’t want your business to look underrepresented or unprepared for the next big thing.
That’s where managing technologies come in.
To help the internet retailer on the go, I’ve put together a list of the top managing technologies to help your business run cheaper and smarter.
1. Inventory Management
In today’s made-to-order online shopping space, inventory management tools have never been more valuable.
Retailers large and small need the ability to track, record, and reconcile every good or material that comes along.
Webgility is one of my absolute favorites, and is something my clients use often. The software helps retailers keep track of their multichannel businesses by connecting and integrating all of their sales, accounting, and even manufacturing information in one easy-to-use control panel.
By multichannel, I mean that retailers today have the option to sell their goods and services on as many online platforms as possible. That means you could be on Etsy, Amazon, Shopify, and Walmart all at once. With all those numbers to keep track of, retailers need somewhere just to see it all.
Plus, it’s all automated, and all the information pours right into your accounting software. No manual entry required.
Music to my ears. Check them out at Booth 1513.
2. Customer Service
This might be an even more important facet of internet retail.
Online businesses don’t have an office you can visit, much less a customer service rep you can scream at when you have an issue.
Today’s ecommerce retailers use technologies to manage their customer service needs. Add to that a couple poor souls answering phones, and a social media coordinator answering DMs.
Because online platforms are notoriously considered depersonalized, it’s important for online retailers to ensure the best possible experience for their customers, whether they’re complaining or not.
What you use will depend on how big your business is.
For me, I rely on Slack for all my needs. I simply create private channels for my clients, and I can chat intercompany with my interns. It reminds me a bit of AIM, as it allows me to speak directly with clients instantly from anywhere, giving them the personalized experience they expect from their bookkeeper.
But, for something more customer support based, you need a more client-facing system. For that, Zendesk is where it’s at.
With Zendesk, customers can easily contact your customer support team with any issues, and can even submit support tickets for glitches or problems they find with your website, or any processes around purchasing your products.
Every way a customer can contact you online is managed by Zendesk. That means social media, phone calls, emails, chat, and probably carrier pigeon.
Even Slack uses them for their customer service management. That’s saying something. Check them out at Booth 1668.
3. Accounting and Bookkeeping Software
I might be a little biased here.
My bookkeeping business started, and remains, online. I learned the desktop, manual-entry way, but quickly realized that the way of the future was in the cloud. From that point, I migrated all my efforts to cloud accounting software, and haven’t looked back.
For online retailers, automated and cost-effective financial management is crucial to success. You may think product development and sales are everything. But at the core, you are running a business. That means bookkeeping, and accounting.
Obviously, I’d recommend hiring an accountant or bookkeeper to do everything for you. But, for those who can’t afford it or just want to do it themselves, QuickBooks Online has never done me wrong.
I use QBO to create a financial ecosystem for my clients. I track, send, and receive their transactions, while the software automatically reconciles and keeps track of every penny in or out. No manual entry, no mistakes. It’s a beautiful thing.
From there, I look to other financial integrations for QBO that will help my clients with specific needs.
For international wire transfers, I can’t say enough about Veem.
Veem is a global payments processor built for small businesses. It allows business owners, accountants, and bookkeepers the ability to send fast, cost-efficient, and secure payments to over 90 countries.
There’s no wire fee, the foreign exchange rates are great, and I can even track my clients’ payments in real time on my intuitive dashboard.
Check them out at Booth 1555, and see what I mean.
There you have it, my top 3 managing technologies for internet retailers.
Check out these great companies before you go, and say hi when you get there. You’re sure to get some great information, and even give your business a boost in the process.
Or, you’ll at least get a t-shirt. It’s a win-win.