What does coronavirus mean for your e-commerce business?
With major sporting events, concerts, and offices closing all around the world – many people might be wondering what covid-19 will mean for their online businesses.
While nobody can predict the impact it will have over the next coming weeks or months, here are a few things to be aware of.
1. You may experience delays in production
Depending on where your products are made, the factories might have to close. The factories in China have reopened – however, if you source your goods elsewhere, there may be some delays.
Make sure you stay in touch with your suppliers so you know if there will be delays and when your orders will be complete. It will help you to predict if, or when, you might run out of stock.
2. If you sell out of your stock, your ranking might take a hit
If you’re selling on Amazon and you run out of stock, you might lose your ranking.
It’s been said that if you’re out of stock for 7+ days, your sales rank will go down; but if you’re out of stock for 30+ days, you’ll lose your ranking completely. That means when you replenish your stock, you’ll have to start from scratch again.
So keep a close eye on your stock-count. If you think you might run out of stock, try to slow your sales as much as possible. Turn off any PPC ads, and stop any social media or word-of-mouth advertising. You could also increase your prices to slow sales too.
Hopefully, if you implement any of the above measures – even if you do run out of stock, it won’t be for too long so you can bounce back quickly.
3. Be mindful of the potential for warehouses to close
It’s unknown yet, to what extent offices and warehouses will close. If other countries follow Italy’s lock-down, then it’s possible that some FBA warehouses and other 3PL warehouses might have to close, too.
At the moment, the Amazon FBA warehouses are still open – however, Amazon is now only accepting new stock of products that fall in certain ‘essential’ categories.
Amazon have introduced a new policy to let workers stay at home (if they are ill) and still be paid in an attempt to restrict the virus spreading.
If you’re planning to send stock into the FBA warehouse, check out our latest post on ‘Covid19 Update: Amazon FBA restrictions’.
There isn’t a huge amount we can do at the moment, other than stay safe and hope that the pandemic will end soon.
If you’re self-isolating or staying home more than normal, there’s the silver lining that you could use it as a time to catch up on training videos or product research, for later in the year. It seems important to be conscious of what’s happening but to keep your brain stimulated as we pass the time.
Finally – our thoughts go out to everyone and we hope that you and your families are ok.