It’s no secret that inflation is a concern for merchants and consumers alike. Faced with uncertainty over increasing rates, Shopify merchants are wondering what they can do. This blog will delve into what causes inflation and what Shopify merchants should do to prepare.
What Causes Inflation?
There is no one direct cause for inflation, but there are a few causes that directly impact eCommerce stores.
Supply Chain Issues
While, to some extent, there have been issues with the global supply chain historically, there have been more issues in recent years. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, eCommerce saw an uptick in online sales. In fact, 2020 had a 43% increase in online sales from 2019. This increase in online sales put a demand and drain on merchants and suppliers, who had to produce more to supply this increased demand.
Manufacturers took a hit when the pandemic and lockdowns occurred. Despite the need for increased production, they took a big hit, only returning to pre-pandemic levels this July. However, quick turnarounds in jobs are still an issue for restoring manufacturing levels.
The Great Resignation
Also commonly referred to as the Big Quit, the Great Resignation is an ongoing economic social trend that has been observed in the last few years. In 2021, over 47 million people resigned from their jobs.
This has caused companies to incentive their employees, typically with higher wages. However, there is still the issue of understaffing. This is contributing to issues with the supply chain, as lack of staff makes it more difficult to complete orders.
Increased Production Prices
Due to issues in the supply chain, things like shipping and moving freight have become more expensive for companies.
This causes merchants to have to increase their prices to make up for the additional charges, pricing out consumers.
What Can Merchants Do To Prepare?
Inflation is here, and merchants need to know how to weather the storm. So what can merchants do?
There are things that merchants will have to do to keep afloat. This includes things like price increases and removing underperforming products from their site. Merchants may be concerned about how to do this while maintaining consumer trust. The answer is transparency.
Transparency can take many forms. One way would be to do announcements ahead of time when making a change. This could be sending out an email and/or making a social media post announcing what change you are making and why.
Maintaining your consumer trust is important because this is a time when consumers are limiting their spending. If consumers do not trust you, they are less likely to spend their money at your shop.
Transparency is not just for consumers. Being transparent with your employees is also important. This will keep their trust in you, increasing general employee satisfaction and lower job turnover.
As Shopify merchants, one of the best ways to streamline your store without additional labor costs is automations. There are many different automations that can be used, both through apps and advanced customization.
This automation allows customers to edit, cancel, and reorder products themselves. While there are a few different apps that can do this, we at Fyresite recommend the Orderify app. Merchants can install it via Shopify.
This automation allows customers to edit their shipping address for unfulfilled orders. This saves merchants time, as they do not have to make the edits themselves or cancel and redo the order. Fyresite recommends that merchants install the app Relocate Address Editor from the Shopify app store.
Shopify offers a number of templates for marketing automations. These include abandoned cart emails, customer winback, and new subscribers. Merchants can also custom make their own automation using Shopify. To read more about Shopify’s marketing automations, read our blog Using Shopify’s Marketing Automations To Increase Business Revenue.
Shipping automations can help merchants streamline their shipping process. This includes printing all the shipping labels for a day and updating tracking information. Fyresite recommends using ShipStation, which can be found at the Shopify app store.
Time to Update?
Another good way to prepare for inflation is to make sure your site is up to par. While it may seem counterproductive to spend money on a new design or to migrate, the investment of spending money now to spend less later will pay off. As a Shopify Plus Partner, we can help.
To see if Fyresite is a good match for you, contact us.