Outsourcing. An important strategy many companies are hesitant to build into an overall business plan. Some ecommerce executives believe their teams can manage it all without outside help, and fear consultants won’t perform as well as the in-house team. Or perhaps they’ve experienced horror stories of not finding the right partner or engaging them in the right way, and have been burned by a bad experience.
The truth is, many companies outsource their online business the wrong way — they use multiple partners, each focusing on a separate task without consideration of a holistic strategy. If done right, outsourcing aspects of your ecommerce business will enhance your current capabilities and ensure your team is able to stay focused on the company’s core competencies.
The solution is hiring a virtual organization. Revolutionizing the way companies think about outsourcing, the virtual organization relieves the stress of spreading resources too thin and taps into a team of experts to work on your digital landscape behind the scenes, helping your organization flourish. Everything from online store management, to security, to customer care, and more can be part of this virtual organization.
What should you look for when choosing a virtual organization? At a minimum, I recommend the partner you choose must be able to help with three things:
- Mitigating your risk
- Taking your brand global
- Providing analytics with an end-to-end view to track your successes
There is a lot of risk in global business, and no company wants to end up in the headlines due to a data breach or malpractice of local regulations. Global tax and compliance laws are extremely complex — it can be difficult to keep your business compliant when laws are ever-changing and often require significant updates to business operations. A virtual organization that specializes in global laws and regulations will allow you to rest easy knowing you have a level of expertise that is difficult and costly to build in-house. Ecommerce executives must ask themselves, is it worth risking your company’s reputation and paying expensive fines for non-compliance?
In addition to protecting your company, a virtual organization can help your brand grow and expand around the world. It’s important to understand that the answer for going global does not include dropping your U.S. strategy into a new country and hoping for the best. You must become a relevant, local presence each time you add a new country to your book of business. Offering local payment methods, language display options, and billing and shipping locations are not just a “nice to have” — in many cases it can mean the difference between an expansion fail or growth success.
Outsourcing doesn’t have to be a web of complicated relationships fraught with inefficiency and profit loss.