In this first episode of our new WordPress Development Corner, we interview developer Marcel Schmitz about the new MultiChannel module for iThemes Sales Accelerator.
Elise: I’m Elise and with me today for iThemes Developer Corner is Marcel, our lead developer for iThemes Sales Accelerator. Thanks for being here with me today, Marcel.
Marcel: Yeah for sure, thank you.
Elise: So we just released an update a new module for iThemes Sales Accelerator called MultiChannel.
Marcel: That’s correct, yeah.
Elise: So why do you think MultiChannel is such an important tool for store owners?
Marcel: Well the first word that comes to my mind is ‘exposure.’ So there’s a lot of attention in many different places when it comes to ecommerce but most of the attention is right now on Amazon and eBay, so if people are looking for products, the first thing they do is they don’t search on Google and on any other search engine, they go directly to Amazon and eBay. You’re free to have your product there, but it’s difficult right, so you’d have to take everything that you already have on your e-commerce site and bring it all up there, upload the photos, descriptions, not to talk about stock and inventory, and not to talk about price changes, etc.
So it is bringing more exposure to your products and grabbing all that attention that isn’t exactly on your website for one place because it is very difficult to bring all those people directly to your website especially if you’re selling products that are not the specific product or niche products out there if they are competing products with other other brands and such.
So the word is exposure, right, so you bring everyone to the same place and you have your products displayed and it is quite a difference, so if you look at the numbers Amazon and eBay, they have millions and millions of visitors per day and it’s quite interesting to have very quickly and very efficiently with very little work all the products up in Amazon and eBay.
Elise: So how can store owners use MultiChannel to leverage their business?
Marcel: Yes, so it depends on the products they’re selling. The good thing about this is you can either sell new goods, so products that are new, and you can also use this for sale for used goods, right. So let’s say, for instance, you have a lot of stuff at the home where you have other products you want to say about their used products and you want to quickly grab a website and spin up a website where you put all those products in, and you can also very quickly configure them to be selling on eBay and Amazon.
If you think a little bit about this, this is mind-blowing right, because if you would have to do that by hand on all those platforms, and there’s a sale on a specific product on eBay and then you would have to go back to the other websites and take the product out because you only have one of them and there are a lot of things that go on around this procedure and having your products there, so inventories for one, so if you sell everything on Amazon, good for you, if you sell everything on eBay, good for you, but if you have to move the channel every other place you have your products selling will have to eventually update their stock quantity there too right so that for one and if you’re selling new goods and if you have competition, it is a good way to put your products next to the other products.
Imagine you have like a very famous store and it’s like just going into that store and there is a very famous brand out there and just take your product and place it beneath it or in near that product so it is almost as simple as that
Elise: Very cool. This only works with the American versions of eBay and Amazon?
Marcel: Correct, yes, but we want to extend that to Europe and other countries, yes, so we will support our MultiChannel module for other countries. We’re working on expanding it too with other features and having other channels available. The thing about the other countries is every other country has a specific rule or have some kind of special needs that need to be added to the to the plugin, so Amazon has the same rules for the United States, Canada and Mexico and so if you want to sell in those three countries you’re good to go with our plugin right now.
For the all the other countries there are special needs and special details that we need to get into the module first so we can expand to those features, and as you can imagine, we will have to open stores and open accounts on those different marketplaces for us to be testing everything and to be compliant. Europe is not a very easy place to sell stuff online so there are a lot of rules going on so we need to be careful about that, yeah so that’s that’s the reason why we were first doing this for the United States.
We’re thinking about bringing into the wagon Google and Facebook – these two are a little bit different than the first two so as Amazon, eBay, you know, you can check out on their website and you can pay on their websites for the product and the order is going to come and synchronize to your WooCommerce store, and you’re gonna get all the information about those sales that happened over there inside your own WooCommerce installation.
But the thing about Google and Facebook is they’re only platforms for exposing your product. So what Google and Facebook will help you is to get on to more platforms, increase even more the exposure that you have, and with that, presenting your products details in images but eventually people wanting to buy that product they will have to check out on your website. So they’re gonna be choosing their products and the cart is going to leave on your e-commerce website, and you’ll be checking out on an e-commerce website which is the cool thing right.
Imagine you’re making an advertisement for your website inside Google and Facebook and although you can also advertise on top of those products that are going to be displayed on Facebook in Google, it actually gets more people. It gets more attention and although right now people don’t go exactly to Facebook to find products, that will eventually be the case and you cannot also let Google outside the equation because Google still has as I were to say in search business, according to products and selling products and selling goods online, so this is where we going to go next and then we’re going to focus on opening these to other countries so that’s that’s our plan for it for the next for the next couple of weeks.
Yeah so our motto over here is to help our customers to make more money, so this is exactly what we are trying to achieve with this, with all this suite, with this plugin. It has these multiple modules attached to it and so right now we are thinking about bringing every one of these modules together. So Inventory has a word to say on a MultiChannel, MultiChannel has a word to say on Reporting, Reporting has a word to say.
So right now we’re gonna work a little bit on getting everyone together in talking to everyone. Right now you can actually go to the Reporting module and see how much sales you made on Amazon and eBay, but we want to make it more specific. We want to make more reports that will give you an idea how good Amazon is doing, how good a Bay is doing, and at the same time if you want to set up a warehouse that is going to deliver only specific goods for Amazon or only specific Goods for eBay, that’s probably also a good idea, and it’s probably also something that you’re very likely to want to have if you’re fulfilling from different zones of the country. So yeah, that’s what we have in store for now, and after that, we’re going to expand our modules a bit, and we’re going to work on things like cart abandonment and other modules that I cannot say. It’s gonna be a little bit of a surprise but the thing is that we want to help really help our customers to make more money, that’s the message.
Elise: Great well thank you for so much for talking with me today, and sure we’ll see you again soon okay thank you.