What is your strategic ecommerce tactic?
20th April 1 Comment
What? Strategic tactic? Is there a difference? Does it matter? It absolutely amazes me how often I have met people in business that do not know the difference, let alone that they have either one of them.
It’s more the opposite. Loads of business people start running before they know where to run to. Just recently I had the chance to be observer at a little ecommerce project, where I experienced this in fantastic clarity. The client came around the corner with two systems that he thought were the right ones to satisfy its needs (not shop systems, but systems for a special task in ecommerce – and again here we are with Roman’s Shop System Wars…). But since these systems both had their own idea of how to make the job, the vendors tried to sell their solution. There is nothing wrong with that so far. But unfortunately the clients wasn’t listening to the consultant, who tried hard to show him, that both vendors are just doing a part of the job. He tried to convince the client that for this new part of ecommerce activity a strategy is needed to gain the maximum effect. But since the client already fell in love with the marketing blabla and the fancy graphics of the slide desk, the consultant was too late.
So instead of developing an overall strategy (= to know where you have to run), the client will go for a technical solution (yes, here now comes the tactic part) and a concept that only covers part of the whole topic.
This is like making the second step before the first one. I guess some of you made the same experience. I am always amazed, that managers from small to big companies obviously do not know the difference between strategy and tactics. It’s pretty much the same with efficiency and effectiveness. OK, little self test: stop reading here and ask yourself if you know it… 3, 2, 1 time is over… It is effective to do the right things and it’s efficient to do the things right. They both have to link together if you want to achieve anything. If you did not know it, don’t be sad: in fact most people I met in the business context didn’t know the difference and the linking.
But why is it so important? Today’s markets are complex. You have loads of players of all sizes. Niches are filled quickly, concepts are being copied fast. Every customer is valuable. A clear strategy for your company/client helps you to identify the right steps to reach the overall aim. If you have no underlying strategy that helps you to steer towards the overall aim, you will pretty sure make some dumb decisions and get lost on the way.
A chinese proverb says: “If you are in a hurry you will never get there”. Especially if you work in ecommerce which is a high speed industry, that little sentence should be always on your mind. A solid strategic planning is the base for high speed in the later phases. I wish you good luck and confidence, that you can deliver this message to your clients.
(Picture by Anil Jadhav)