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Five Factors for Partner Success in Ecommerce

9 min read

Running a business, regardless of its size, is hard work. In the face of constant competition, an increasingly sophisticated marketplace and changing government regulations, many business owners and operators struggle to keep their business open and operating — let alone successful!

This is particularly true for small business owners, who are among the most vulnerable and susceptible to change, be it a loss of revenue, increased operating costs, decreased funding, and so on.

To help alleviate some of the pressure of running a brick-and-mortar-based business, many small business owners have turned to ecommerce and the digital marketplace to reach new and more customers and generate greater revenue.

With that in mind, now is the perfect time to offer ecommerce services to small- and medium-sized businesses and grow your business alongside your customers’. And now that you’ve decided to make the leap into the digital marketplace and start seeking out customers, there are several things you need to consider as you get started — for the sake of your own success as well as that of your future merchants.

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Five Ecommerce Partner Success Factors

  1. Implement strategic alignment with a long-term vision to help SMBs sell more online
  2. Empower sales and support staff with training and onboarding tools
  3. Utilize marketing materials and advertising tools
  4. Create a clear path for customers looking for different economic solutions
  5. Stand out with freemium offers

Implement strategic alignment

One of the most important factors in the success of a company that sells ecommerce — or really anything, for that matter — is the presence of strategic alignment. That is, how lined up are coordinated are the various different parts of the business toward achieving your goals for it? Are they all focused on selling ecommerce? Do they understand what ecommerce is?

Ask yourself: Does your company have a plan? Does it have goals? What is its purpose? Where do you envision it being in five years? What do you want your business to have done in that time?

If your company does have some professed goals, consider how they impact each part of your business — from what you sell to the size and roles of your company’s individual teams to the day-to-day operations of your employees. Is everything and everyone working toward the same thing? If so, your business is likely well strategically aligned; if not, you may want to consider why that is and what you can do to address it.

Empower team members with training tools

It may seem simple and obvious, but another critically important factor in determining how successful your company will be in selling ecommerce is the comfort level your team members have with the concept of “ecommerce.” It’s likely that your employees will have some level of familiarity with ecommerce through the internet as shoppers and customers, but they may not know the ins and outs of the product and platform you’re offering your future merchants.

To help level the playing field and ensure that all of your team members have the same basic understanding of what ecommerce is and what it can do, be sure to provide all of your team members with training tools and onboarding information. Walk them through what ecommerce is and what your platform offers merchants, and see where any knowledge gaps exist within your team.

You’ll want to be sure that your support and sales teams, in particular, have access to these resources, as they’ll need to know all of the minute details about your platform to do their jobs most effectively.

Advertise and market your platform

A key differentiator in business, be it in ecommerce or not, is brand awareness and recognition. Do potential customers know who you are and what you do? Do your current merchants know all of the features and services you offer? What makes your business and your ecommerce platform unique?

As an Ecwid partner, you have access to a wealth of readymade marketing materials through Ecwid’s Partner Portal. These resources — including ebooks, go-to-market playbooks, slide decks, and white-labelled marketing collateral — can help you reach out to and attract new customers with just a little effort on your part.

Make use of these materials in Facebook and Google advertising campaigns to draw in new customers and boost sales, and watch the success of your ecommerce business grow.

Thinking about adding ecommerce? Click here to check out our new ebook, “10 Partner Factors for Ecommerce Readiness”!

Create a clear path for customers

Now that you’ve looked at ecommerce and your platform from your team’s perspective, you’ll want to consider the journey of your potential customers to your business and how you can streamline their experience. Running into roadblocks to reaching and purchasing your ecommerce and other services can quickly drive potential customers away — and to your competitors.

Review and consider what the actual process is like for a potential customer coming to your ecommerce platform to launch an online shop and become a merchant. What are the pain points and bottlenecks? Is the process at all confusing? Are there easily accessible instructions for customers on your website to guide them through the sign-up process?

Taking this step of going down the path that your customers will use to join your platform can help inform how you lay out and design the sign up process, keep potential customers happy, and eliminate a lot of potential headaches for your business.

Provide freemium options

“Freemium” is something of a loaded word these days. The model essentially boils down to offering customers at least two options: a free tier, which gives them limited access to a product or service, as well as a paid or premium tier that grants them access to all of the product’s features.

Whatever your thoughts are on offering something for free, it’s undeniable that it drives customer interest and traffic toward the product or service. Who doesn’t like getting something for nothing? The same is true for your ecommerce platform: freemium helps your business grab the interest of (and hopefully acquire) potential customers who may otherwise not be willing to try your platform’s services.

As such, it benefits your business to offer a freemium option to potential customers. With the freemium tier, you can let these new merchants try out the process of setting up a shop and selling online, but you can limit the features they’ll have access to as a free member. Hopefully, once they’ve seen what your platform can do and how popular selling online is, they’ll want access to your platform’s higher-end features and will become a paid member.

Now that you’ve considered these factors for success in selling ecommerce services, you’ll be able to start working with customers with confidence. And don’t be afraid to refer back to these readiness factors in a few months — they can help you casually audit your operations and guide you in improving your business.

Good luck!

Do you want to learn more about growing business with the Ecwid Partner Program?

Table of contents

Thinking about adding ecommerce?

Check out our new ebook, "Top 10 Factors for Ecommerce Readiness"

About the author

Colin Thompson is a content writer at Ecwid. He writes about marketing, business development, and promotion for our Ecwid Partners. He loves cats, Chicago sports, deep dish pizza and going on hikes.

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