E-commerce companies today face the reality of having to chase the ever-evolving consumer experience Amazon has normalized over the past decade, including incredibly short delivery times. Without that level of quality, consumers will shift their business to Amazon or another competitor.
Mimicking that seamless Amazon experience doesn’t come without a price—but fortunately, there are tools today to level the playing field.
Merchant platforms like Pinterest and Shopify are making it easier to open a storefront, while PayPal and Square make it remarkably easy to accept payments and start selling your products faster. Operational elements like delivery are no exception, with shipping software platforms like Shippo working to bring that fast delivery experience to businesses beyond just Amazon. Credit products like Brex enable e-commerce companies to absorb the upfront costs of shipping before they realize those sales, without having to deal with complex, expensive merchant loans.
Tools like these have enabled the rise of e-commerce businesses that have blossomed into nationally-renowned brands. Glossier, Warby Parker, and Rent the Runway have built billion-dollar companies off delivered products—and those are just three examples of dozens that have become wholly-sustainable companies. Just as the proliferation of the Internet created a connected world where we can communicate instantaneously, it has simplified the operational complexities that would break a retailer if not executed perfectly in-house.
If you’re trying to build an e-commerce business, you have to accept that short delivery windows are table stakes now—and consumers expect no less from online shopping. That means that the operational complexities and costs of shipping have become considerably more expensive even though your sales cycles probably haven’t changed. Like many things Amazon has done in online retail, it has once again raised the barrier to entry for e-commerce companies looking to compete with the behemoth.
Instead of losing your mind trying to build your own website, work with credit card companies, or frantically deal with FedEx and UPS, take a step back. Technology has democratized—or is in the process of doing so—many of these seemingly game-breaking tactics Amazon employs.
When it comes to online shopping, consumers have never had a better experience. They can buy a product in seconds and have it show up in front of their door in 24 hours—and sometimes it happens even faster than that. They can decide on their summer wardrobe while sitting in traffic and get it in the mail days later. They can buy products instantly the moment they see them online.
All this is precisely the way it should be. Your customers deserve the best experience. But don’t let that seemingly-herculean task scare you—you already have everything you need, and it’s only a Google search away.
Brex is a corporate card for e-commerce that is financing built for the way you work. It is not a loan and not a cash advance, but rather 60-day interest-free line of credit based on your trailing 30 day sales. Brex is also a trusted partner of Shippo. Earn up to a $500 credit towards your Shippo shipping contract when you sign up with Brex. Learn more about this offer.