At some point most sellers will need help running their Amazon business. If you’re expanding, the odds are very good you’ll look up one day and find yourself overwhelmed with the day-to-day of selling on Amazon.
That’s probably not the time you want to look at hiring an assistant.
As in, predicting what will be needed before it’s needed. Prediction is a valuable skill. When it comes to assistants (VAs, or Virtual Assistants, as they’re usually called, since they often do not work directly at your side but rather online), prediction can mean the difference between a smooth transfer of workload and continued growth, or a harder transition and perhaps even dropped balls. The idea is to have help when or just before it’s needed.
So … how to predict that moment?
On the one hand, you personally want to be productive at all times. To really grow, however, this personal productivity can’t be dedicated to the routine tasks that merely keep your business running. You’re the business owner. Spending all or the majority of your time on daily operations greatly reduces your ability to create the next phase. If it gets bad enough your business expansion may stop entirely.
As a general rule of thumb, if you’re spending up to 6 or 8 hours a day “running” your business, and that trend is only growing, it may be time to start looking for a VA.
Typically, the whole idea behind a VA is to help with the repetitive tasks that consume time but that don’t necessarily require executive level insight or decision making. By offloading these tasks you free yourself to make more of those executive level decisions and, thereby, create and fulfill your vision of continued growth.
Things like order fulfillment, tracking, inventory management and restock planning can and should be done by a VA when the time is right. Customer service and managing the customer feedback ratings of your listings are biggies, and these are very often some of this first things for which you’ll find yourself in need of a VA.
With more advanced or skilled VAs you can offload additional, higher level items like PPC ads management, listing updates, graphic and marketing design and even oversight of your Seller metrics and Seller Central account. How far you go is up to you, but with a trustworthy, capable VA you can free yourself up from many of the tasks that might otherwise consume you each day.
Leaving you in clean air, with a clear view of the future and the freedom to create the next phases of your expansion.
The key is when. When do you add that first VA? After the first there will of course be others, future hires which also require prediction and planning, but that first assistant can be the most challenging. Seeing the need in advance, knowing when to bring in help and get them trained … that can make all the difference.
Here’s to your expanding success.
All the best,
The Floor Planet Team