The idea of being an entrepreneur is an awesome concept, especially in the remote working community. There are so many different directions you could take, so many different ideas to pursue...But having a successful business where you are the boss and growth is continuous within your field is much easier said than done. One field that has expanded beyond recognition, is the realm of eCommerce. With eCommerce at a continuous high, and no indication of things moving the opposite way anytime soon, we caught up with Tiago to pick his brain on what it's like being a remote eCommerce professional.
POSITION | FUNCTIONAL ROLE:
I manage an eCommerce business (so my job description would probably be "eCommerce Manager"?). I'm basically a jack-of-all-trades, a general specialist. My jobs is to keep the day-to-day of the operation working, delegate/outsource what should be delegated/outsourced, and deal with everything else that isn't. On a typical day I'm answering a few more complex customer support situations, following up on our development agency progress, production/manufacturing, operations/shipments, and working on paid advertising. I also do bi-monthly meetings with our advisory board to discuss strategy and where to grow next.
HOURS | PAY SCALE | BENEFITS:
Since I'm also the business owner, I have no schedule. You might find me laying in the sun at 4pm on a Monday but I might be pulling a 12-hour work session during a Sunday or an all-nighter on any given day.
In terms of payment, with being the business owner, I take whatever is left at the end of the month and doesn't need to be reinvested. It may be range from 5 figures in a good month to absolute 0 in a bad month. Even as an employee, the salary of an eCommerce Manager will be highly dependable on how big the business is.
Benefits is a bit harder to explain/depends on the person. As a business owner/contractor, the fact is that there's no job security. Your upsight on potential higher gains is also higher, so it's always a trade-off. Being from a country with low wages, I can say for sure that I made the right choice, but it took me nearly 5 years to reach where I am now.
ATTRIBUTES FOR SUCCESS:
Most importantly, perseverance, self-awareness, and attention to detail. If you're also managing Customer Support, a high level of compassion/empathy should always be at the forefront of your work.
I don't think there's anything you learn in college that can't be learnt outside of it. Everything valuable that lead me to where I am was mostly learnt by doing. If you're looking specifically at an eCommerce Manager, I'd say you need everything a Project Manager functional role entails, plus the extra technical skills that are very specific to the eCommerce industry (knowledge of web design/functionality, marketing tactics, online presence and familiarity with analytics, budgets and accounting.
How did you get to where you are now?
I always knew I wanted to make a decent amount of money early on so I could build wealth and live off capital investments, but my path has shifted consistently to be honest. Early on when I was just out of high school, my plan was Engineering, so I went to Engineering school for a year. I hated it, so I transferred to Business School, aiming at a career in Investment Banking. In the meantime, I started doing eCommerce, buying stuff from China and selling it in Portugal using Facebook to drive traffic and sales to my eCommerce website. once things started to pickup, I ended up dropping out of Business school altogether to do this full-time.
That was 4 years ago. Everything was built from that base, of course now at a much higher and more professional level, but it's not something I could have just started at the level I am on today. I'm still playing the minor leagues of eCommerce, to be honest, but I'm steadily getting there.
Personally and professionally, considering I'm 23 and a half years old, I wouldn't want to be anywhere else than where I am today, but that also sets everything up for higher and higher expectations (and potential failures) in the future, so the anxiety/pressure never goes away.//
Aside from the advice given above, I've compiled a short resource list that may be helpful while getting all your ducks in a row with taking your job remote, switching fields into eCommerce, or finding a remote opportunity that can potentially give you the freedom to travel at your leisure.
Because you can never know enough (or everything) about the eCommerce industry.
Udemy - eCommerce for Beginners - This course goes deep into the beginnings of having an eCommerce company. It covers everything from the inside out including choosing your product, finding the right supplier, business practices specific to running an eCommerce company and more.
Alison - Regardless of business size, this course helps to bring you an understanding of the basis and foundation of eCommerce and why it's important. It will also teach you, among other things, how to plan and set up your store.
eCommerce Training Academy - Covers the basics of digital marketing and how to grow your online store with more traffic and sales.
Digital Marketing Institute - Develop clear set-up objectives, measure customer outcomes and become knowledgeable of data protection, regulatory and privacy issues with operating an eCommerce system.
Based on a quick SEO search, we found these four job board sites to be the most effective/popular in the online community right now. But don't take our word for it, check them out yourself and see which works best for you (click thumbnail to open page).
Technology is a beautiful thing, why not let it work for you once in a while? A full comprehensive list can be viewed here, but I've listed a few of the most popular to start with.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jessica is a freelance copywriter and OG member of WiFi Tribe. While she is based in Los Angeles, she has been traveling throughout Latin America for over a year, with plans to tackle SE Asia this coming fall after some US explorations set for summer 2k18. She is the principle blogger for WiFi Tribe, but also writes for a few ecommerce companies and non profit organisations based in the US. Aside from work, Jessica has awesome hair (obvi) and is a future NY Times Bestselling Author... as soon as she finishes writing her first novel (it'll be worth the wait, I promise). You can keep up with her via her Instagram if you want to see some cool pix and funny memes :)