We talked about what your first hire should look like to run your web site. Honestly, it’s very easy to hire the wrong person! Because you are partnering with Modern Retail, we will take care of all the complicated items. While this certainly includes all of the technical and programming tasks, it also includes the web site's design. Therefore, if you run an ad for a "web site developer" you're going to get the wrong kind of people answering it. Instead, you need someone who can do the following:
- PHOTOGRAPHY. Many of our apparel and footwear customers find it better if they shoot their photography in-house. While a couple of them have been successful in finding a photographer to come in 1-2 days per week for the shoot, most train an employee to do it. With the right equipment and a little bit of training an internal resource should be able to do it for you as well.
- MERCHANDISING. Just like in-store, how you're presented online makes a big difference. People who have retail experience certainly get this idea and Modern Retail will teach you how to do it online. It starts with setting up and styling the shots for product catalog images but also includes writing good product descriptions, organizing the items in your catalog for maximum effect, cross sell / up sell, etc.
- MARKETING. Modern Retail believes strongly that we must teach our clients how to do very good online marketing. As the old saying goes ... "teach the man how to fish and you'll feed him for life" ... well that's our approach around marketing. Modern Retail will help you figure out where it makes sense for you to spend your ad dollars and then will teach you how to do it.
- CUSTOMER SERVICE. Similar to in-store, you will get customers asking you questions about the products online. Typically, stores will have the "sales floor" answer the questions coming in over the phone and their "web staff" answer the questions coming in over e-mail. You'll want to find someone who's a good retailer, knows your product mix, and can write.
- ORDER FULFILLMENT. I suspect this will NOT be the same person but wanted to document it just in case. Obviously, you'll need someone to pick, pack and ship out the items you sell online.
There's one final role you MAY want to consider:
CONTENT EDITOR. As the site grows you will find it more-and-more important to be constantly changing the content on the web site. This may include a new homepage "editorial image" of a woman wearing the hottest brand, updating a designer's bio, etc. These changes are typically done by someone in-house or the Modern Retail support staff. We have to charge you a small fee if our support staff makes these changes for you. Generally changing homepage slideshow images can easily be changed within your Content Management System (CMS). NOTE: Product Catalog changes like adding new products, uploading product images, changing the price or description, etc. are all done through Store Manager. Store Manager is a wonderful tool because it's easy-to-use but powerful, and we provide all the training you need to run your online store.
This last role is what most job seekers will think if you run an ad for a web site developer, or worse, you'll get a really technical person who will be almost no use to you. As you can see it's much better to have someone that understands retail, is good with people, can write, and has a marketing bent. Probably the most important characteristic is someone who's willing to learn and contribute to your company.
Of course if you have any questions about hiring for your new website, please ask us!