As the owner of a small ecommerce business, there are times when getting hit by an incredibly busy sales weekend is both a blessing and curse. Suddenly inventory is low and even your shipping supplies need to be restocked! When a slew of new customers rush in all at once, it can be overwhelming to say the least. This type of growth is what all ecommerce shops want, yet few rarely anticipate. Spending so much time dreaming about that day in the digital sun, what do you do when the moment finally dawns? The answer is simple: get your business ready to scale.
One of the biggest caveats online retailers often face is the capital necessary for that growth to be fostered. Recently Shopify; identified rising acquisition costs as a determining factor affecting ecommerce businesses, and the trend is only predicted to grow. “As more businesses are online, it’s harder and harder to be found by new customers. Because it’s so easy to start online now, there are definitely rising costs of customer acquisition,” says Mel Ho, the Senior Marketing Product Lead at Shopify;. With more opportunities for fiscal growth, there also comes fervent competition.
An owner ready to scale understands the ins and outs of their niche, product trends, unit economics, and how to continuously expand their audience reach. It remains that this fight to stay on top of a niche or product offering is costly for a growing brand. Along with a myriad of other expenses that continue to build like shipping, hiring and so on, sometimes it’s tough for a growing company to keep afloat financially. Catching issues before they snowball is definitely a make-or-break factor for a business on the rise. Even the most prepared ecommerce companies can use some extra assistance. Thanks to the recent trends, there are more options than ever before to help ecommerce brands thrive in today’s uber competitive marketplaces.
A Market Blazing the Trail
As technology has evolved over the last few decades, consumers have adapted habits to fit the expanding digital economy. A steady and gradual rise over many years, the boom in ecommerce during 2020 skyrocketed the trend and now more than ever there are opportunities available for ‘net-based businesses to capitalize on. According to a recent JP Morgan trend report, 77% of the US population now shops online regularly. Previously, the United States has long lagged behind other world markets in the uptake to online shopping. A very diverse ecommerce market nationally, it’s on an upwards trajectory and showing strong growth fueled mainly by consumers' love of the convenience entailed. After only a decade since inception, digital wallets have risen to be the second most popular payment method. This trend too is expected to rise since about 67% of the global population are now mobile phone users.
Another driving force of the transition is legacy mall brands becoming omnichannel retailers, and ecommerce is expanding like never before. The explosion in uptake of pickup options and app-based shopping during the pandemic has been embraced as the new normal. About 45% of all ecommerce sales are now made via mobile. While dominated in some aspects by giant pure-play ecommerce platforms like Amazon and Walmart, the market is also seeing healthy B2C and C2C trends. Researchers estimate that by 2026 the global ecommerce market will generate over $8bn USD annually.
All this expansion makes it an imperative time for ecommerce brands both big and small to brace for the future and be ready for whatever change that comes. As the ecommerce market itself has grown, customer attention and therefore acquisition is harder to come by. Adding to the competition online retailers are facing, more and more brick and mortar locations are hybridizing their in-person shopping experiences. Not that many years ago, it was also easier to see a return on advertising capital. With about a 15-20% drop off rate in advertising reach on major platforms like Instagram, compounded by obstacles like advanced ad blocking technology, it’s difficult for businesses to navigate the market solo.
What Is An eCommerce Loan?
Part of the broader range of business financing, ecommerce loans exist for small businesses interested in either expanding or offering an internet-based retail platform. Whether a long term or short term loan, they each come with different requirements and qualifications, including varying rates. Just like other types of small business loans, they span from unsecured loans that require no collateral, to secured loans that are backed up with chosen business assets or tied to big equipment purchases.
The exact type of loan necessary for your business structure will depend on many factors. Key needs specific to your model, and areas where growth should be addressed can affect this decision as well. The overall points to consider here are your business’s basic needs, which are the time available, unit economics, and capital. Understanding how this all fits together and just what’s lacking in your model is necessary before actually going through with any type of lending.
Some financing paths for ecommerce businesses include:
- Business Cash Advance
- Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans
- Short-Term Business Loan
- Long Term Business Loan
- Merchant Cash Advance
- Opening a Business Line of Credit
For many ecommerce enterprises, the easiest and most surefire loan structure is a business cash advance. This allows a shop on the move to very quickly meet the demands of a market surging with consumer potential. With the backing of a trustworthy partner, businesses are free to focus on what really matters to their future like improving upon customer acquisition and retention. Within a few days, the finances can be in your bank account and ready to be used on anything your shop needs.
Does My Business Need Financing?
Every small business venture begins with pie-in-the-sky dreams and hopes that, somehow, it will all become a reality. Sometimes success seems so far off that business owners don’t actually plan for it. Of all starting companies that go under, a uniting factor amongst them is failure to anticipate the costs of growth and expansion. With success comes new opportunities, although the capital necessary to seize them is not always close at hand – especially during the beginning phases of a business. Skyrocketing sales on your Amazon or Shopify; platform can have its drawbacks, and expensive ones at that. Without the proper preparations and backing, scaling up too fast is detrimental to any small business.
There are common pitfalls many owners don’t see coming like under estimating expenses accrued by new hires, accounting, legal fees, and taxes. Shipping and storage fees are often pricier in the earlier stages for ecommerce businesses. Even advertising on a minor scale through social media will quickly add up, and these mounting costs can be crippling when they hit a business all at once. Scaling up is truly an exciting and wonderful time for a brand, but it can all be marred without the proper planning. If your shop is thriving yet could use a little help getting to the next level, it might be the perfect time to consider an ecommerce loan.
How Will a Cash Advance Help My eCommerce Shop?
Previously unexpected costs and financial obligations for a small business are inevitable with new growth. There are plenty of fees that crop up without much notice, and with booming sales come pricey shipping bills and storage space. Moves from home business models to renting out full office spaces make a big impact on a company’s growth and wallet alike. For ecommerce entities interested in scaling up, the costs tend to crop up in the initial phases. Both paying existing staff as well as hiring and even potentially training new employees can be one of the most expensive endeavors of all. Every ecommerce store will have different areas where an injection of capital will aid them most in the long run, and identifying the right spot is crucial. A steady cash flow is imperative to keep business going, and you need to keep ahead of any fiscally tumultuous situations.
An eCommerce Loan Can Assist Your Business With:
- Hiring new employees
- Revamping your website
- Ordering more inventory to meet demand
- Investing in digital and social media marketing
- Building a mobile ecommerce app
- Incorporating into a brick and mortar store
- Paying existing staff salaries
- Renting office or warehouse space
It’s important to analyze what your particular brand needs to maintain upwards momentum, and invest in those areas. Does your shop need to spend more on inventory stock to keep up with rising demand? Perhaps it’s time to invest more into shaping brand identity and marketing? Customer acquisition is one thing, but what spending will translate into retaining those buyers over time? Occasional brands have seen enormous success scaling up by building unique mobile ecommerce apps, which can be quite expensive. Along with overhauling a website and improving user experience within a platform, some decisions are more costly than others. After careful evaluation and planning, small business owners can discover which area of their store will benefit from financing the most.
Here When You Need It
Unfortunately, your typical bank and traditional lenders have systems designed to work against ecommerce sellers instead of for them. When finding the right loan for your ecommerce business, turn to those with expertise in the field. Now, there are even faster and easier to access lines that offer what ecommerce businesses actually need. Specializing in partnering only with businesses that operate in ecommerce, we truly know and understand our clients.
With a unique repayment structure that truly works on your terms, Onramp is here to help small businesses achieve their goals. We offer cash advance loans to ecommerce retailers in a form that fits a modern store owner’s needs, and integrate our application easily with all the major platforms like Shopify;, Amazon, BigCommerce and more. Through a quick approval process that includes no personal credit check, your ecommerce platform can get on-demand cash based just on your sales. Contact us to get an offer and see how much cash is available for your business today!