More often than not I am the *second* consultant. Most of my clients come to me broken & burnt looking for a solution to turn their business around or save their position. I do a LOT of rescue missions.
A lot of my clients wish they had known about me before they used XYZ ‘expert’ consultant. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, so is training.
When I want to develop a new skill I train. I find the BEST person in the industry and learn from them. I am currently training in advanced nail art from someone who has competed internationally at over 50 competitions, 12 x UK champion and 15 years experience. Why would I choose from the plethora of other educators when I could learn from the best?
E-commerce & marketplaces are funny though, only experience of running an eCommerce business can give you the skills you need. There are a lot of people out there who claim to be an expert, to the detriment of your business if you let them loose.
I contributed to this article by Web Retailer:
How to Choose an eBay Store and Listing Designer which outlines the process of choosing an eBay designer. You need to be just an thorough with choosing a consultant.
Some tips on choosing your consultant:
1. Did they ever run an ecommerce retail operation?
A good consultant in this industry learnt from the ground up. You need to have run the machine to know the machine.
2. Do they have over 5 years experience helping OTHER businesses online?
Running your own business is one thing, but setting up a different business for success is another. Businesses are NOT the same.
3. Do they have reviews? Like this: http://www.webretailer.com/forum/3698-simply-the-best.asp?
Reviews and case studies are vital. I am going to spend this year building my up my case studies as I have done far too many ‘secret’ projects!!
4. Did you find then just via google or a personal recommendation?
I work with other third party providers, and most give a personal recommendation of my services. I am also present at many networking events & expositions so you can get to know me. I have been here a while and well known to many.
5. Are they telling you they can help you make easy money?
Making money is not easy. Get rich schemes are still very popular and mostly fail. One client I helped raise their game 97% in their first year & 60% in their second year took a lot of effort and time from both sides.
Last year I set up an eBay business from scratch, and it took 1 year with 153 listings (1000 skus) to produce a stable eBay business with an average selling price of £13. Businesses grow, they do not just appear.
Choose your consultant wisely, they can make or break your biz!