Working online is typically just like working in an office — but at home, so you may also have a fixed schedule. However it all depends on your employer if they have set a time for you to come to work and usually its around US business hours time — so evening in Philippine time (If your employer is from the US, which in most cases are). This is the most typical setup and they are much different than freelancing, since freelancers have control over their time and are more output oriented. However, you’ll encounter employers who are lenient with time since some employers just needs the output from you or they understand how difficult it is to work in a graveyard shift. For me, I do not have a fixed schedule as long as I do my job and complete about 20 to 40 hours a week.
I really don’t follow a strict work schedule — which is bad. Because aside from my online job, i still do lot of things for our family business and my hobbies. But I always prefer working during the day time than graveyard, but sometimes i get to work on evenings as well depending my mood and how I woke up during that day.
The First Things I Do.
So typical routine for me when I wake up is I say my prayers and make coffee. Then I start my working day by logging in using a time recording software called Clockify. First thing I do is to check my email gmail, slack messages, organizing files and folders, and plotting my tasks for the day using Asana and Trello. My first half of my working day usually consumes about 1 to 2 hours, then once I’m done with my pre-work session, I log out again to take a shower, now depending on my mood and season, I either get back to work or I go straight to the gym first.
Time recording software is most commonly used by employers to track the time and work of their VA’s. There are a lot of time tracking applications out there which employers require their VA’s to use and it has an automatic screenshot feature so employers can monitor your work.( if you are working or not). I have never used a time tracking software that automatically send screenshots to employers, but the concept is pretty much straightforward, there is an interval when it captures a screenshot of your screen. The Time Tracking I use is called Clockify.me, I like the application because it doesn’t record your screen or capture screenshots, which how I wanted to work — no pressure and is all about trust and integrity.
My Primary Role: Listing Management
Listing Management for our Amazon store primarily involves optimizing the front and back end of the listing, checking listings for errors such as description changes, category changes, and everything else that involves changes in the listing. A listing is the other term we call our products that are being offered on Amazon, think of it when you are shopping on Lazada or Shopee and you try to look for a particular product, that product that you click is called a listing for a seller such as us. Optimizing a listing involves researching and adding keywords to the back end of the listing, these keywords will help our products show up on amazon when a buyer searches for our product by typing in keywords or search terms. Aside from that, I also update the technical details in the back end, such as product dimensions, target audience, shipping weight and dimensions, those technical stuff about the item.
More about Listing Management
Now that doesn’t end there, I still have to do the front end of the listing, which is the one you see on the product page. So this includes product description, product title, product bullet points, and images. I also check if the product is in the right category, categories are like sections when you go to SM department store (you have womens, mens, babies, household, kitchen section, and so on). So for example, our product is a kitchen product and Amazon has misplaced our product to women’s category, so I try to fix that on my own. Moreover, working on the front end of the listing also involves having those keywords that I have researched for the back end and incorporate them when I draft my product title and descriptions. So the skill that is needed here is copywriting (which in layman’s term “Salesmanship in writing”), and I need to come up with great copywrites to entice customers to buy our product and differentiate us from the competitors. And how I do it is I try to connect with my customers emotionally through writing the features, benefits, and a possible story for the product.
Documenting the Process
But I’m not done yet, after optimizing both the front and back end of the listing. I need to document the changes and make a report for A/B testing or Split testing. This report is important since I need to know if the changes I made to the listing either improved or crashed it. In other words, I document the before and after changes. I do it by recording the Sales and BSR of the listing — BSR or Best Sellers Rank, is a term on Amazon telling the ranking of the product against all their competitors in their respective categories, and they are driven by the number of items sold and impressions.
Listing Management is my primary duty for my current employer, it basically involves Data Entry, Copywriting, Graphic Editing, Research, and Amazon SEO. It may seem simple and easy but we have about 2,000 listings that I need to optimize and monitor so this is quite a challenging task — But I like it because of all Amazon related tasks, listing management is one of my favorite things to do because my efforts will have a great impact on the success of the business.
But apart from the duties stated above, I still do some adhoc or emergency tasks such as reporting hijackers, fixing product listings variations, fixing suppressed listings, adding new products, tracking daily BSR updates, and so on, but these tasks only happens once in a while. I’ll be discussing more of this in another article. I do hope that you find this blog helpful when you are interested or saw a job posting about listing management, product uploader, or listing optimizer on Amazon.
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