Stories by eCommerce Directors: eCOM360 Roundtable Issues #1-5

To help achieve objectives at eCommerce and make every day more efficient through cooperation, we have supported the creation of eCOM360 Roundtable, an engaged, value-driven community of eCommerce directors. 

Each week within the community, there are unique industry insights and real-life stories shared by eCommerce directors about resolving challenges in their business. 

The stories reach the members of the community in weekly Roundtable issues sent by email. Here is a look into the first five:

1. Ad costs going up, sales going down

told by Gustavs Gotauts, ex-eCommerce director of Velosock.com

“It was October when we started scaling our online store. Sales were around 4,000 EUR per month. Scaling happened rapidly. In just over one month the numbers had jumped over the 100,000 EUR mark already. At the start of January, we were ready to ship out everything sold during December and get back to scaling. This was the moment we noticed ROAS going down exponentially.

Hiring one of the best CRO agencies, changing the Media buying agency, scaling the team with experienced specialists – nothing seemed to fix the issue.

I was desperately searching for WHYs.

Fortunately, once at a random conference, I met an experienced head of eCommerce. 3 beers in, I got the solution. For all this time, the issue was as simple as it gets. I realized I had started to play in the highest league, without doing my homework first. I had to go back to the skipped basics. That meant building my first buyer persona, making changes in the existing brand book, and building my first funnel.

Even though if it was just a sales funnel for Facebook ads, it gave me and my team a detailed understanding of our potential client and the content we must present them, and helped dearly for future use.”

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2. Getting personally involved

told by a source who wanted to stay anonymous, Austin, TX

“Monday, 1 year ago. As per usual, first thing in the morning, I opened my email.

We need to finalize our all-in-one Data Studio report,” a message from the founder of the company read. “I want to see all fulfillment data, marketing costs, and related conversions from all channels, service desk efficiency… EVERYTHING on one screen.”

NP, will unfreeze the project and kick it off,” I answered right away. 

Mapped all data points & connected necessary suppliers. They started work on the integration, as I switched to other tasks and priorities.

A few months passed. 

Dozens of meetings held, yet still, no report delivered. In 2 more months, only a few broken dashboards were there.

Then COVID-19 started. Day-to-day operations turned into 1-day deadlines. In other words, lesson learned:

“Get personally involved, and innovate with urgency.”

Senior managers often start a project and disappear, not joining daily and leaving small things to consultants, or junior staff.

Rather – set the focus and daily deadlines, do not miss day-to-day operations, micromanage where possible! The recent crisis helped to get that missing urgency in day-to-day life for me. That’s the only way any innovation for your eCommerce business will fly.”

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3. Embracing the unprecedented user flow

told by Diana Nikitjuka, Digital Experience Manager at RIMI

“A year before COVID-19 started, Rimi opted for building an eCommerce platform for more convenient grocery shopping, taking the significant step from offline to online while there still was time.

As soon as the pandemic hit, user count sharply increased not only in the eCommerce store, but the app and main website as well. We were faced with the demand for online services, including even more fast-paced quality content, which is my main responsibility, that none here was ready for. 

This opened up a lot of opportunities for future growth. Because of the great demand, we were able to crystallize a strategy for developing this type of content in the future. Bigger traffic = more opportunities for experiments. 

Here are my main takeaways:

– actively and passively monitor customers (analyze analytics data, study the trend: collect reviews, work closely with the customer service department)

– constantly come up with and roll out small tweaks here and there, improving the customer experience

– have several development streams who will support different departments and directions (sales, service, branding, corporate responsibility, etc.)

Be as flexible as possible and able to adapt, because either way, agile wins. And as repetitive & simple it sounds: client first. Important now more than ever.”

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4. Believe in numbers and your customers

Optimizing for native digital people, customer satisfaction as a metric, the importance of feedback, and much more in an interview with Ajit Sivadasan, Global head of Online Sales, Digital Marketing, and Platform at Lenovo.

“Online experience is an irrational and biased process. Let your customers show you what you need to see.”

Watch the full interview here.

5. Why weekly meetings are not enough

told by Jonathan Ribas, CTO at Zadig & Voltaire

“As of recently, we’re holding daily meetings with the whole digital team. Since we’ve had these in place, the internal information flow is much more efficient and reaches the right people in time.

During one of these, we discovered a bug of the order statuses not updating. 

We met several times to take this topic apart. After investigating several cases impacted by this, digging into the logs to see what was happening, soon enough we found what was causing the issue. The team fixed it in one day, and updates were pushed live.

Another time we noticed an insane peak on google analytics, which immediately seemed to be a bug on their side. 

15k people visited the same page within one minute.

The referral was Instagram, but it wasn’t a post from our team. Turned out an influencer with 1,2 million followers posted our product, and the 15k page views were legit.

So just have fluent communication between all the services and departments to learn and tackle whatever comes your way!

Fun fact, we had zero orders on that product during this peak. But, you know, it happens, we sell other products and give Zadig & Voltaire brand visibility – in the end, that’s the most important for us.”

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Interested to join the community and access more exclusive content and network with other members? Go to community.ecom360.io and apply for your invite!

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