Outsourcing Tips for Finding Phenomenal Remote Workers

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Finding great outsourcers is hard.  How can you hire great remote workers among the sea of amateurs who will waste your time or, worse, hurt your business? We spoke to one of the first adopters of outsourcing, Katrina McKinnon, who has been outsourcing work since the 90s, before it was the cool – or understood […]

Managing a Virtual Team Across 5 Time Zones

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It’s 7 a.m. in Montana and I’ve just rolled out of bed.  After pouring some coffee, I check-in on my team in Asana. Our programmer in India is wrapping up his day, and just pushed a new set of changes to the website.  Our Content & Community manager, Laura – who’s two hours ahead on the East Coast […]

How to Read a Balance Sheet (The Non-Boring Version)

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Today I’ll be (hopefully) demystifying how to read a balance sheet, a potentially confusing beast for those unfamiliar with it. At it’s simplest, a balance sheet shows what assets your company controls and who owns them. And if you’re concerned with not bankrupting your new store (“I TOLD you selling piranhas online would never work!”), […]

Mastering the Income Statement (Even If You Hate Accounting)

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The income statement seems straightforward enough: revenue at the top, expenses in the middle and profit at the bottom, right? Sadly, the good old profit-and-loss gets botched more than just about any other financial statement. If you’re running your own business, it’s important to know what goes where. And if you’d ever like to buy or […]

Becoming a Niche Expert When Drop Shipping Products

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I know the products and the market I sell in extremely well, yet I’ve only laid hands on a small percentage of the items I offer because I’m drop shipping all my products. Sound impossible?  If you’re willing to get creative and put in a bit of work, you can become a bonafide niche expert […]

Offering Phone Support: The Store Owner’s Dilemma

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Deciding if and how to offer phone support is one of the hardest things I’ve wrestled with as an eCommerce entrepreneur.  I’ve tried half a dozen different approaches and I’m still not 100% satisfied with how I’ve incorporated it in my business.  It’s a really tough issue, especially for small independent merchants with limited staff. […]

How to Boost Sales 25% with Effective Email Marketing

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I’ve never made email a priority in the 5+ years I’ve spent running eCommerce stores. So when expert Ed Hallen, founder of email startup Klaviyo, told me it was possible to see a 25% sales boost from effective email marketing, I could only whimper quietly while thinking of the money I’d left on the table. Don’t […]

Behind the Scenes of a $500,000 eCommerce Business for Sale

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I typically don’t take on eCommerce consulting, but when reader Andy Depperschmidt offered to let me share details of his purchase of a website generating $500,000 in annual revenue, I agreed to advise him at no charge. In this post I’ll be revealing revenue, profitability, traffic stats and the sale price for Andy’s recently purchased […]

Outsourcing from a Virtual Assistant’s Perspective

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After the last post on hiring VAs, I thought it’d be interesting to hear about outsourcing from a different perspective – directly from a virtual assistant!  Specifically, I’m pleased to introduce you to our team member May. May – a VA based in the Philippines – has been with us for more than three years […]

How to Hire a Virtual Assistant in the Philippines – with John Jonas

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If you’ve ever considered hiring a virtual assistant to help with your business you won’t want to miss this interview.  And even if you’re already outsourcing, you’ll learn incredibly valuable techniques for building strong and productive working relationships with your VAs. John Jonas’ team is made up almost exclusively of Filipino VAs and he’s one of the best-known […]