Would you believe that turning your entrepreneurial dreams into reality is now quick and easy? Thanks to Ecommerce platforms like Lazada, Shopee, Shopify, and Zalora, setting up a shop won’t take as much effort, time, and money compared to establishing a brick-and-mortar one. Since you are working with an existing platform, all you need are documentation, your branding ideas, a gadget, and Internet connectivity. In a matter of days, your shop will be up and running. But unlike a traditional store where it’s easy to identify what your expenses will be, online seller newbies will soon find out that there are charges—unwanted fees that may make or break a starting business. Let’s get to the bottom of it, shall we?
Why am I paying for extra charges?
As with any business, you shell out expenses to keep your operations running.
To give you an idea, here are the fees that will be deducted from you as a Shopee store owner according to Moneymax:
- Seller Transaction Fee covers payment transactions costs except for canceled, returned, or refunded orders
- Mall Commission Fee enables access to all the perks and privileges of being part of the Shopee Mall
- Cashback and Free Shipping Program Service Fee are the service fees if you are part of the Cashback Program and/or Free Shipping Program.
Lazada, another popular online marketplace, has its own set of fees such as Commissions (for LazMall sellers), Promotional Charges Vouchers, and Payment Fees for paid lost claim charges. But, there remains another culprit. Your extra charges may be because of an SLA.
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Reading the Fine Print: SLAs
SLA or service-level agreement is the agreed-upon level of service that a customer expects from a store or service.
Why is there no SLA for traditional retail stores you may ask?
Simply because an SLA is inked between a service provider or store owner and its external suppliers. So if you’re an online seller with an existing Shopee or Lazada store, an SLA between you and the Ecommerce platform is to be expected. An SLA lists down all the metrics, duties, and expectations a purchase entails from both parties (Overby, 2017).
What are the benefits of an SLA? It aims to protect both parties.
Sellers know their duties and the buyer’s expectations of their products. Through the SLA, entrepreneurs and the online marketplace being used are on the same page.
But what happens when you fail to follow the SLA?
It goes both ways. From the platform’s perspective, your performance is negatively rated. As for your shoppers, well let’s just say nobody wants a delayed parcel.
One of the most common SLAs pertains to shipping out a customer’s order at a given time.
This agreement goes by many names—Days-To-Ship (DTS) or Ship-On-Time (SOT) are the most common—but whatever the platform, the allocation is in respect with the item availability and distance between you and your customer. And it ranges days—a couple, a week, or a month even.
Another thing about this SLA is that it is the most common reason for a breach. Failure to fulfill your part in the shipping process may result in penalties, or worse, unhappy customers.
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Responsible Seller = Happy Shopper = Good Sales!
We deep-dived into some of the reasons that may possibly bar us from being good SLA-followers. In fact, two of our discoveries pose huge risks and, therefore, losses:
- Missed Order No matter the love and dedication you pour into your venture, the fact remains that life gets in the way. You won’t always be online. You may have an errand. The shipping date went over your head. These reasons are all normal and human. Unlike a well-oiled machine, there’s just a lot going on that may distract the brain. And yet, this human error can cost your business. When you forget to process or mix up orders, you can’t expect customers to be happy with your service. They want your product and they expect you to efficiently send it out to them.
- Poor Inventory Allocations Imagine the horror—you already accepted an order only to find out that you ran out of stock. What happens next? An apology and canceled order. You get no sales; instead, you’ll get a disappointed buyer who may not buy back from you.
If not an out-of-stock problem, you may run into some logistical issues or mix-ups, especially if you operate in multiple warehouses.
Poor inventory allocation doesn’t always mean shortages. An overstock of items that do not sell well does not look good on your books, too.
These two issues may make or break your online store, but they surprisingly come with a relatively easy fix: utilizing a smart and centralized Ecommerce operating system.
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How can Omnirio help improve your day-to-day operations?
Selling everywhere is a good move if you wish to boost your online sales. But managing multiple platforms is a challenge—this practice is prone to missing out on orders and mismanagement of inventory.
Omnirio solves this dilemma by transforming your selling experience from multiplatform to omnipresent. In a nutshell, Omnirio lets you manage all your online stores from one dashboard.
Since it centralizes management, you can process all orders accurately and automate your stock management for efficient allocation. It even comes with other features to make your customers content and happy—loyalty and rewards programs are readily available and customizable to suit your business needs.
And in terms of innovation? You can keep up with the trends using customer insights gathered by Omnirio. Understand your customers’ preferences and shopping behaviors and plan your succeeding strategies accordingly to boost your sales.
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To Sum It Up With just one click, you are able to realize your dreams of owning a shop—Ecommerce transformed and will continue to shake up the way retail works.
But just like any normal business, fees and deductions are to be expected in order to operate. You can minimize it though by being a responsible seller who fulfills orders with crazy efficiency. One way to do it is to sign up for systems designed to help you give your all, everywhere, at once.
Want to learn more about the omnipresent experience? Check out Omnirio now!