eCommerce has presented entrepreneurs with the freedom and ease to expand their businesses across the globe. The effects can be summed up by this simple fact- Nearly 25% of the world’s population is shopping online.
Dwell on that for a minute.
1.92 billion people across continents, making up hundreds of demographics with their varying preferences and expectations. Plus, eCommerce sale is expected to cross $4.5 trillion by 2021. It’s needless to point out that every online seller wants a bigger share of that consistently growing pie.
Thanks to the expanding innovative landscape, merchants can nurture the ambition of serving diverse customer expectations. However, navigating this opportunity-rich environment is full of challenges. After all, as an Amazon seller trying to maximize your ROI, you need to focus on the core tasks while taking appropriate care of the non-critical ones.
How do you make that happen? Simple- hire virtual assistants.
Virtual Assistants for Amazon- What’s the Point?
What, in your opinion, is a more business-critical process – marketing strategy development OR data entry for Amazon store?
Anyone with an inkling of eCommerce will pick the first option. But, that doesn’t necessarily mean that data entry is insignificant. It merely reiterates the most common fundamental of Business-“A small share of critical tasks drives a large share of the overall value.” i.e. you and your core team has to be involved in the creative, engaging, and crucial aspects of building and running a profitable Amazon store.
But, other factors can also drive you to hire virtual assistants. For instance,
- Saying no to new clients because of workload
- Losing clients because of an inability to respond to them
- Compromising with the quality
- Spending significant time on maintaining the business & not growing it
In such circumstances, it becomes a natural choice to delegate the tedious, mundane, or time-taking tasks to a third-party. That, in this case, is a virtual assistant.
Advantages of Having Virtual Assistants on Your Team
The decision to hire virtual assistant is a critical step for entrepreneurs trying to build a smarter business model for their Amazon store. By using VAs, you can-
- Off-load time-consuming tasks
- Spend your time on productive tasks
- Increase overall productivity
- Reduce the chances of burnout
- Ensure better utilization of time
It’s possible that a lot of your time is being spent on tasks like Amazon product data upload, keyword research, replying to customer queries/messages, etc. They take time, feel tiresome, and can be emotionally draining for a team that’s qualified to accomplish much more. Delegating them to a virtual assistant for Amazon will leave your team free to focus on the creative and more value-generating tasks. If the initial, smaller jobs are completed, it’ll also give them the time and space to work on the bigger ones.
And, with the obstruction of menial jobs removed, your team feels challenged and is also motivated to do better.
Tasks That Can be Delegated to a Virtual Assistant for Amazon Stores
It is important to remember that there is no limit to VA specialization. You can even delegate high-risk, crucial tasks to virtual assistants if they have the right skills and experience. However, usually, Amazon store owners hire virtual assistants for activities that are time-consuming and tedious yet important.
Have no doubt- all those activities are essential to ensure a genuine and remarkable customer experience. Assigning them to a VA, as opposed to dedicating a team member for that purpose, helps save time while ensuring good results on time.
1. Customer Service: Customer-oriented virtual assistants for Amazon can create templates, formulate situation-specific messages, and quickly respond to queries. They can comment on positive reviews and handle negative reviews with real solutions. They will also be responsible for bringing urgent situations to your notice. They can track and record all requests for returns, refunds, and buyer grievances as well.
2. Data Entry for Amazon Store: Virtual assistants who specialize in Amazon product upload & data entry can help you by creating meaningful and tactical product listings. They can create engaging content, highlight your product USPs, and utilize Amazon’s enhanced content features to engage your subscribers.
3. SEO Optimization: Using a professional VA for SEO tasks like keyword research, link building, bookmarking web pages, etc. is a good practice. They can work on competitor keyword analysis, construct backlinks to valuable websites, and implement the latest updates on your product pages. Meanwhile, your team will be free to create strategies that can strengthen the presence of your Amazon store.
4. Social Media Updates: In addition to updating your social media pages, Virtual assistants can also take care of other time-consuming(but essential) tasks for you. That includes updating statuses, uploading product photos, posting offers, inventory alerts, and updates about your store.
5. Product Research: Instead of using a core team member, you can task a VA with researching products that sell on Amazon. Hiring a virtual assistant for such research work is especially beneficial if they are in an opposite time zone. If you time the requirements correctly, your team will have enough information to produce valuable results every morning.
6. Product Photo Editing: Photo editing is a complicated process, best left to the experts. It’s time-taking and involves procedures like retouching, background removal, etc. Creating several eye-catching, high-quality results in a limited time-frame can be tedious and stressful for a core team member. Using a virtual assistant for photo editing gives you the advantage of time and proper attention to the task.
Do keep in mind that virtual assistants can do much more. That includes inventory management, tracking shipping data, etc. It all depends on your requirements.
Of Course, The Question Arises- Why Hire Virtual Assistants at All?
After all, every part of the tasks laid out here, from Amazon product upload to SEO optimization, needs experienced professionals. Messing with quality just to lessen the workload can have disastrous consequences. So, isn’t it smarter to hire more full-time employees and get them to do the work?
That is a very reasonable doubt that most businesses face when they consider hiring virtual assistants. Depending on varying requirements, it can be challenging to identify the exact point when a VA becomes a necessity for you. However, some common signs include-
- Frequent long work shifts for you & your team
- Delayed response to clients because of workload
- Losing clients due to delayed problem resolution or lack of timely response
- Spending the majority of time on tasks that generate less value
- Spending maximum energy on tedious tasks
- Declining productivity, efficiency, and team morale
Having said that, here’s why hiring a VA for the functions mentioned above is better than hiring full-time employees.
|No need to provide office space or work equipment
|The employer needs to provide appropriate office space and equipment
|Virtual assistants are independent contractors. Employers will only pay for the amount of work done
|The employer will have to provide benefits including payroll, taxes, pension, medical allowances, insurance, etc.
|Hiring VAs from different time-zones ensures that the work goes on, even when your office shift ends
|Full-time employees work in shifts of 8-9 hours and any overtime they take up will increase the employer’s expense
|Minimal soft costs involved
|Soft costs include training employees on regular intervals and retaining them during the off-season, etc.
|Fast turn-around time
|Turn-around time is usually affected by employee availability and workload.
|Employers can pick from a global talent pool
|Employers are limited to a local pool of talent near their physical offices
How to Hire a Virtual Assistant- 5 Steps to Keep in Mind
So far, we’ve clarified the role of virtual assistants in boosting your productivity and efficiency. Here’s a little guide on screening and engaging them effectively.
1. List the Tasks That Will be Outsourced to the Virtual Assistant: Every task has a value. It costs the business a certain amount. It brings a particular revenue in return. Identify the high-value activities that directly contribute to the ROI. Then, mark the remaining low-value tasks, like data entry for Amazon store, to be assigned to the virtual assistant you hire.
2. Define the Position & Its Responsibilities: You need to create an accurate description of the tasks and responsibilities that the VA will be taking up. Distinctly mention the required experience, education, skills, duties, and standards.
3. Prefer Extended Interviews to Resume-Fishing: Candidates may look great on the paper, but the reality widely differs in several cases. An extended interview process helps you gauge their sincerity and skills in a better way. Speaking to them on the phone helps you better assess the candidate. Giving them an exercise or two can show how much they value quality and deadlines.
4. Set Evaluation Parameters: In addition to evaluating the candidates through job-related tasks, you should also test them on other constraints. Verify their experience. Prefer people who’ve worked before in your industry or something similar. Make sure they have the right resources, software, and tools to provide the results you’re seeking.
5. Allow a Training/Probation Period: Even if you hire an experienced and skilled virtual assistant, they still need to be trained on your USPs. They need to understand the product and your organizational ethics. Prepare for this step beforehand.
Amazon Virtual Assistants Can Be Insightful Tools If Utilized Appropriately
When you hire virtual assistants, you take the next step in your journey as an entrepreneur- optimizing the path to success.
Bringing a VA on-board is a big commitment that can pay off well, as long as you watch your step. While the suggested course of action is sure to help you, it’s also important to remember that finding the right virtual assistant for Amazon can get a bit complicated. If you don’t want to spend many resources or time on this, it’s better to hire virtual assistants from a reliable service provider.
We Can Help! Whether you need more assistance in comprehending the benefits of virtual assistants or need one for your Amazon store, we have the answer. Just drop your concerns at firstname.lastname@example.org.