After 20 years in retail management, and driven by his passion for fishing, Iain Palmer decided to start World of Tackle, an online fishing tackle business. Nearly three years on, Iain and his wife, Sharon, have a successful company that through eBay and Amazon, supplies fishing tackle accessories to over 1,000 customers per week.
Why did you start selling online?
We started an online business because the overheads of a physical shop were too high. And, with the internet at people’s fingertips, it gave us a customer base with enormous potential for growth. The marketplace has changed dramatically over the last decade, and with so many purchases made from phones and computers, the world of e-commerce was too large to ignore.
Now due to our success, we are able to attract the best suppliers to secure better deals for our customers.
What have been your biggest challenges selling online, and how have you overcome them?
Our biggest challenge is keeping up with the constantly changing market, and ensuring that we always have the right product at the right price. Freeing up as much of our time as possible has helped us keep on top of these challenges. Using a system like Zenstores to manage our orders has freed up a lot of hours, and we are able to ensure order cut off times are never missed - poor customer service is the downfall of most businesses.
Why do you use Zenstores?
The main advantages of using Zenstores is that it allows us to easily consolidate our orders from different platforms in one go. The seamless integration saves us precious time, and we have the ability to ad further selling platforms at a later date.
What are your top recommendations for people starting out selling online?
1. We feel that you should treat every order as you would if you were serving a customer face to face, and remember that each and every transaction is as important as your first order. It's important to build a solid reputation from the beginning and then the repeat business will follow.
2 Never undersell your products! Don't be swayed by competitors offering identical products at a cheaper price - people would rather pay a few pence more for a better service and a correctly present listing from a seller with good feedback.
3. Keep optimising and continuously improving, challenge yourself to improve your business. Find the area within your business that needs development and work on making it more successful.