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Markku's greetings to the e-retailers

Markku Korkiakoski

Regardless if you have been dreaming about starting your own webshop for years or just a few weeks, my most important advice to you is simply just to get started and take the first step towards your own dream. I have myself been in this business since 1992 and I have seen many stories of success when e-commerce dreams come true.

The risks in e-commerce are much smaller than in other types of business. With a webshop, for example, you don’t need to have a physical place to sell your products and you then avoid paying rent for brick-and-mortar. Instead of one single path of success, there are several ways of succeeding in e-commerce. The will to try new things is always a plus; if one way does not work you can always try new ways by giving better customer service, increase your product selection or streamlining your marketing.

Think about what you specifically can offer to online customers. Be courageous and determined while also have your goal in mind. There is no need to stress, a patient one step at a time is a good method forward when building a webshop. It is important to invest in marketing, but more importantly, you need to take care of your customers. You should define what are the company’s strengths; are you the one amongst your competitors who has the biggest selection, the best customer service or the lowest prices? You can also start and run a webshop on the side of your other employment and if it starts paying off, your own business gives you the opportunity of a more free and independent working life.

Multi-channel and future marketplaces

Mobile and multi-channel is something that became a big part of the e-commerce business a few years back. Multi-channel means that except using their computer the customers also use other channels both online and offline. For example, mobile phones and tablets are used much more when shopping. Many e-retailers also see that the physical shop and the webshop complement rather than compete with each other.

The next step in the e-commerce development is the rise of new marketplaces. When you search for products in the US or Central Europe the results often link to for example Amazon, since many webshops also sell their products in Amazon. In the Nordics, we have not really gone this way yet, but I predict the marketplaces will play a much bigger part within the near future here in the Nordics also. I urge everyone to follow this trend with an open mind, as it seems like the marketplaces and the webshops also complement each other with visibility and marketing.

Social media channels are important, but a webshop needs a home base

Social media is also something that has hugely changed the life of e-retailers. Through social media, it is easier to build up awareness of the webshop, increase sales, handle customer service and network with others in the business. It is important to understand that social media is a good tool, but it is not a good idea to completely rely on that only. One channel which is popular today might not necessarily be popular in the future. Changes to the algorithms can drop the visibility overnight. In the end, the most important activities happen in the actual webshop, i.e. the orders from customers. Moreover, by starting your own webshop you have unlimited possibilities to present your products and tell more about your prices, payment and delivery methods. Activities in social media are definitely a plus, but they can never replace the actual webshop.

The intuitive service is easy to use, but there is also support available

Ever since the beginning, it has always been important to us to offer a webshop solution that each and every one of our 2000 e-retailers can use regardless of age and background. We keep the code jargon between ourselves; with customers, we speak clearly and understandably.

Vilkas’ e-commerce solution is intuitive and easy to use. If you as a customer need customised features and integrations, we have experts who can solve this. We also offer support to all our customers via email or phone. You never have to be alone with potential challenges.

A working e-commerce platform is uncomplicated and secure

Vilkas is constantly working on developing the security and function of the network environment. We never use unsafe technology and never compromise with data security or capacity. As a founder and CEO of Vilkas, the most important thing for me is the success of our e-commerce customers. Vilkas’ e-commerce solution currently contains several hundreds of different features that our customers can use to build their own webshop as well as possible. We are responsible for the administration, development and updating of the features. We make sure our webshops can run 24/7, all days of the week, all year round.

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