Was 2013 a crazy year for your online business? If so, then be prepared to turn the insanity up to 11 in 2014. While that might seem like hyperbole, the ecommerce world (and small business world in general, really) is going to go through some pretty big changes. Here is a small list of some issues you’ll have to deal with at some point in the New Year.
States Sales Tax
If you’re an old school online seller (and yes, there is such a thing these days!), you’ve been blessed so far to not have to worry about sales tax for online transactions outside any states where you have nexus – at least, not until recently. Many states have fought against what they feel is an unfair advantage and instituted various ways of collecting sales tax from online sales. Ecommerce sellers, especially big guys like Amazon, have fought back.
While the fight heated up in 2013, look for some real answers to come in the battle in 2014. Recently the Supreme Court said they would offer no final word and any change to standing federal law would have to go through Congress instead. Is what the states are doing legal and Constitutional? Will every state be able to require eCommerce sellers to collect sales tax from their customers? It remains to be seen.
Businesses got a bit of a break when it came to the Affordable Care Act, as making a decision about offering health care was pushed back to early 2015. But making that heavy decision will weigh on owners throughout 2014, especially as the year winds down.
This is especially true as we will find out how well the ACA works with individuals as the year goes on. We could see the 2015 deadline stand firm, or another pushback. Either way, health care will be a giant deal for every small business owner in the US next year.
Is your website optimized for mobile? If not, it’s time to get on that (Logicblock can help!). Mobile commerce was a force to be reckoned with this year, and 2014 shows no sign of the trend slowing down.
One of the reasons Black Friday and Cyber Monday broke records this year was due to mobile sales. Shoppers like the freedom of buying on the go, further elevated by how it allows them to compare prices and get the best deal possible. 2014 could actually be the first year mobile beats out home computer and laptop sales. Don’t get left behind!
One big change that the mobile revolution mentioned above will bring is even more focus on “Big Data.” Every online seller would love to have real in-depth data about their customers, and the mobile trend will bring it right to your front door.
However, it’s all up to you what you do with this info. Want to nurture your present relationships or find brand new niches to fill? It will all be up to you, which is another issue you’ll face in 2014: becoming the master of your own destiny.
What are some issues you expect to face in the new year?