Ecommerce companies are running on thin margins. Yet they're also competing in a global marketplace. This means they have to do everything they can to keep costs down without hurting their level of service. Here our top productivity tips for ecommerce companies.


Use a Managed Mail Service

While email has become the default business communication method, this hasn't eliminated the need for printed correspondence. And ecommerce companies are causing a spike in packages and small parcel deliveries. You can use a managed mail service like The Delivery Group to dramatically simplify operations. For example, they'll apply the exact amount of postage to every outgoing package. They may lower your shipping costs by taking advantage of shipping discounts not available to a smaller ecommerce company or someone selling a few items online in addition to their retail storefront. This could improve your team's efficiency in other ways. Sort out returned materials from customers and received bills from free samples and advertisements. Then each category of received mail could go to the right department for prompt processing.


Multi-Purpose, Not Multi-Task

Multi-tasking is not productive. By bouncing between things, you actually lose time getting up to speed and increasing the rate of mistakes made. The solution is to focus on one thing at a time. However, you can improve productivity by making everything you can multi-purpose. Send emails to customers about the status of their latest purchase that include links to your social media profiles. Thank people for their business and include coupon codes at the same time to minimize the number of messages they get. Include free samples in the shipments they have already requested.


Have a Meeting Policy

A low-tech productivity hack is to have a meeting policy. Be clear on when people are allowed to organize meetings. Don't have status meetings just to have status meetings. Always have a purpose for a meeting and end the meeting when it no longer serves that purpose. Don't invite people to meetings unless they're actually key to solving the problem. Have a standard process for setting up meetings and notifying people of them so that essential people don't miss the meeting. Have agendas to prevent scope-creep and time wasting side debates. Schedule meetings so there is enough time for break-out sessions afterward, so that you don't keep everyone waiting while two or three people have what is best handled as a private discussion. Don't schedule meetings so that everyone in the next meeting is left waiting because the prior one ran over.


Streamline Your Supply Chain

You could save time and money by streamlining your supply chain. Don't rely on a single source for any key product or service. The Wuhan coronavirus shutdown proves how dangerous that is. However, you should only have two to four suppliers for any key product or service. This eliminates the time it takes to place orders for consumables and raw materials. Your team doesn't have to get quotes from five or ten vendors. And there is no time wasted seeking out new suppliers of unknown quality, because you already have approved vendors for everything.