At a certain point, the demands of your business will require that you hire someone to help with your ecommerce store. Since hiring full-time employees is expensive, another option is to hire freelancers. Fortunately, you can find a number of sources of quality freelance help. Before you go searching all over the Web for that elusive freelance superstar — both talented and affordable — here are some suggestions to make the process smoother.
Begin by evaluating the tasks you need help with — data entry, content production, operational duties, administrative (virtual) assistants. How technical are they? If you are looking for programming help and have a technical background, this will be relatively straightforward. If not, it could prove more difficult, but it depends on the scope, timeline and desired output.
Hiring the right freelance programmer is critical. This is an increasingly important position due to the rise of mobile computing. Today, users spend more time on mobile media than on desktop media. Your Web development freelancer must be adept at creating a fast, positive customer experience for mobile shoppers.
On the other hand, your ecommerce store will likely require data entry service providers to help enter catalog descriptions and pricing. These low-tech jobs are easier to hire for because the freelancer doesn't need to make any judgment on how the work is performed.
BRANDING AND VOICE
For blogging and social media, you'll want to find somebody who understands your brand and can accurately communicate in your voice. It'll take time to look through different portfolios, and narrow your search down to freelancers who can think on their feet. The freelancer you hire will need to stay on top of trends in social media and contact marketing, and quickly publish social media posts, blog posts, Instagram photos and other content.
As you know, the heart of an ecommerce store is operations — order fulfillment tasks such as order intake, ordering from suppliers, supply chain management product bundling, and shipment preparation. Repetitive tasks can be handled by freelancers specializing in simple fulfillment. However, higher-level tasks must be handled by someone with organizational and communication skills, as these positions require intangible leadership skills such as listening, offering productive feedback, setting goals, and providing relevant updates and information.
FREELANCING SITES AND PORTAL
Once you've settled on the tasks you need help with, start your search for quality freelancers on third-party freelancing sites and portals. Check out their previous work, peruse their portfolios and consider recommendations. Look at well-known freelancing sites such as Upwork, Guru and Outsourcely. Take a look at our step-by-step guide on how to a hire a freelancer on Upwork.
Choose if you are posting a job for part-time or short-term consideration, or if you're looking for a dedicated person for a longer period of time. Describe the task you need help with, providing as much detail as possible. Remember that potential applicants are also evaluating if they want to work with you. The more information you provide, the easier it will be to find top talent.
You can also find good talent by tapping your personal network. Do any of your colleagues, clients or associates know good freelancers? Ask around. Who do they use? You'll be surprised how easy it is to get a good referral.
In the book "The E-Myth," author Michael E. Gerber encourages business owners to create systems so they can work "on" their business rather than "in" it. With these tips, you'll be able to remove yourself from repetitive tasks, freeing you up to work on higher-level challenges like improving your sales process and gaining new customers.
WORKING ON YOUR BUSINESS