In 2020, the world was close to shut down because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
For eCommerce business owners, though, profits boosted to levels that were not foreseen.
However, this also opened-up some doors to working remotely and with a more skilled team.
An office was no longer necessary and remote working brought serious benefits for both business owners and remote workers.
Building an eCommerce business with a remote team is neither daunting nor easy.
But it is the present and future and something you should take advantage of.
Why Work with a Remote Team
If we were to dig deep on all the reasons, this would become a huge article post.
So we’ll focus on the two main reasons to decide on a remote team.
Not needing an office for your employees’ desks means not paying rent.
Rent plays a significant role in some eCommerce businesses’ bills.
You can take your rent money and invest it in your marketing efforts. Either by upgrading online ad campaigns, or by investing in another person to help you.
Which brings us to benefit number two.
Experts in their fields know they are worth the money they charge.
And sometimes they like to work on their own terms.
As negative as this may sound, being able to hire a team of experts, even when they charge a bit more, will take your online business to the next level.
Also, because you’re working with remote workers, you can hire from anywhere in the world: from the US to Poland. Ensuring you have great professionals at, sometimes, half the cost of hiring in your hometown.
Building an eCommerce business with a remote team
We know you know this, but it never hurts to stress it: hiring people will help you grow.
Knowing when, how and to whom to assign tasks is the next step in growing an eCommerce business.
So how do you start building an eCommerce business with a remote team?
Here’s three simple steps.
Step 1: Find the What
Finding the what is completely related to: what do you need help with?
Is it an advertising expert? A designer?
A programmer? A customer service expert?
You shouldn’t hire without first assessing your needs.
It’s like when you go grocery shopping.
When you have a list, not only is it faster to shop, but you’ll buy only what you need and spend what you need.
However, when there’s no list, you’ll end up roaming the corridors, trying to figure out what you need. It will take twice the time and twice the money (at least).
When finding your what, try to also think and consider which skills are absolutely necessary and which ones would be added bonuses.
For example, when hiring a Facebook Ads expert, you can separate the skills like this:
- ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY: at least 6 months training; having managed at least 15.000€ a month in ad spent; experience in eCommerce strategy;
- ADDED BONUSES: portfolio of clients; design techniques; video editing knowledge.
We’ll stress that this is just an example, but look at what we did: we pointed out that we needed someone who’s experienced in Facebook Ads and that those with some knowledge in design would be better candidates.
Some Facebook Ads experts also take their chance in designing the ads; some don’t.
Make a list.
And don’t skip to step 2 without that list.
Step 2: Find the Who
Who’s the best person for the job?
That list you wrote in Step 1 will help you figure out who will be this person – the one that will help you get to where you want.
You already know you need a Facebook Ads expert. That’s fantastic!
Now: what are the soft and technical skills of this person?
If in doubt between two or three options, what are the skill sets that you look closely at when deciding?
Here’s something that will help: communication.
When you’re building an eCommerce business with a remote team you need your team members to be good communicators.
You need them to be proactive, to know when and how to talk to you or other team members, for that matter.
Another great skill to be on the lookout for is commitment.
People who are committed are always studying, always trying to improve themselves and their skills.
With online businesses, this is an absolute plus! Because things change all the time.
So, more so than technical skills, if you have a team of good communicators and people who are committed, you’ll likely have found a winner of a business team!
A team that you can take to other business ideas of yours when (and if) you decide to sell your current eCommerce business.
Step 3: Find the How
How to build this winning team? How will you be in constant contact?
First and foremost, now that you know what and who you’re looking for, you can now check for possible options in some main platforms and websites.
LinkedIn is a great place to start. A simple search can get you hundreds of possible candidates.
If you’d rather post a job and receive applications, here are some great platforms in Europe:
- Remote Europe: solely for remote jobs throughout Europe. You’ll see several open jobs already.
- remote.co: also completely remote jobs, but for worldwide positions and possibilities.
- WWR – We Work Remotely: works like the other two.
There are many more websites and platforms to choose from! These are just the tip of the iceberg.
Afterwards, with a team assembled, it’s time to start building your communication tools.
You can create channels for specific topics and team members and organize all conversations on the same channel to guarantee information will not be lost.
We also recommend a channel for non-work related chatting to try and come close to an office-like team community.
You can set up a weekly or monthly call with all team members, which will replace office meetings.
Steve Jobs used to organize a 3 hour meeting every week to always be on top of everyone’s projects and developments.
You may not need 3 hours to start with, but having the team meet on a weekly or monthly basis will strengthen your team trust and your business development as well.
As for time tracking?
The beauty of working remotely is that task completion beats working on the clock.
What we mean is that you need to tell your team about what you want to achieve and by when and guarantee they work for it – regardless of how long they need to do it for.
This is the Google and Microsoft way of working.
If you finish your tasks by Wednesday, then that means you’ll have Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday free.
People tend to work better like this and your team productivity will rise to the skies.
Building an eCommerce business with a remote team is not the future: it’s already happening.
Reducing the office costs and employing someone with greater expertise will help in increasing profits and scalability of your business.
If you’re an entrepreneur, you know the value of time over money.
But why shouldn’t you have both?