Here are some of the different ways we effectively manage a global brand’s eCommerce project.
Many of our clients are concerned about the myriad of components that make up a global venture. Financial projections, tax implications like VAT, various costs and legal obligations are now our responsibility — and within our range of expertise. It’s our job to address these concerns and keep the process from feeling too complicated.
In the early stages of our partnership with a client, we develop a project roadmap. This allows us to outline our first steps as digital partners, as well as our overall strategy and vision. Building a global brand and business requires a lot of trust from everyone involved — including the client themselves as well as the product partners and suppliers we bring onboard as part of a project. Finding suppliers who have the same attitude and culture towards running businesses allows us to do our best work, together.
What it comes down to is our core values; we want to collaborate with people, and ultimately keep our client — and their customers — at the centre of everything we do.
Develop connections with international partners
One of the first steps we take when first working with a client is to reach out to the key players associated with the brand, including product partners. Many of our clients operate on a global scale. Beginning to develop close connections with their worldwide partners will not only help us understand how managing the project will work logistically, but also gives us an insight into the overall environment that we’ll be working in.
The initial conversations with project partners are also a great opportunity to outline our plans from an operational perspective — as well as communicating our own culture and values as a business. It’s important we really take on board feedback about their unique position and relationship with the brand.
Become the digital arm
At RetroFuzz, we advocate for complete transparency and ownership on our eCommerce projects from the start. Having as much information as possible allows us to make key strategic decisions that benefit our client, and everyone we’ll bring on board as part of the project.
Our favourite way of working is to immerse ourselves in our client’s business and provide expertise as part of their in-house team. As the digital arm for the brand, we manage stakeholders and govern the overall project — becoming responsible for everything including outsourcing fulfillment, development, marketing, PR and accounting. These are some of the areas that traditional creative agencies won’t go near, but are integral to the success that we’ve had at managing large-scale eCommerce projects.
We also recently wrote a piece which goes into some of these areas in more depth, which you can read here: Launching an eCommerce project? Here are our top 10 commercial considerations.
Our role allows us to be agile and make effective recommendations around a project’s specific needs. It’s important that the whole experience feels effortless for our client; we’re good at what we do, and it’s our job to make it happen.
Use smart tools to manage the project
Maintaining a light touch approach to reporting, while also communicating our progress, can be a bit of a balancing act; we want to be there to support our clients on this journey as well as alleviate any apprehensions they may have along the way.
We bring our clients into conversations where necessary, but as digital partners the bulk of the work, including planning and momentum, needs to reside with us. Instead of potentially overwhelming our clients with excess information, we keep our communication focused — highlighting the number one priority at any given time.
Some of the ways we facilitate effective project management include:
- Holding a weekly check-in call
- Using Asana for measuring progress
- Sharing weekly reports on performance
- Getting together for quarterly workshops
Maintain - and cultivate - relationships
Credibility isn’t something you can conjure up overnight; you need to not only maintain, but continuously cultivate the relationships you have with all the players involved in an eCommerce project. It’s important when we’re working at a global level to become a trusted member of our client’s team; we’re clear about our intentions and vision, and share honest opinions - as well as solutions - whenever they’re required.
Managing a successful eCommerce project requires us to be proactive instead of reactive. We set the pace for the project and deliver on the briefs we have created. A big part of our role is recognising, on our client’s behalf, what needs to be done and curating a specialist team around that strategy to make it happen.
I’ve always believed that building business relationships is exactly like building personal ones. You need to be clear with your intentions and receptive to new ideas — as well as aligning yourself with the people that share your values.