Hiring an Intern for Your Ecommerce Store? Start Here

Running a successful ecommerce business is no small feat. You have to deliver a great product, a great brand, and a high-quality customer experience that brings your audience back again and again.

Between managing fulfillment, inventory, ads, and the host of other day-to-day necessities that keep your operation running smoothly, you might need a little support. And there are plenty of people out there looking for an ecommerce internship.

But hiring someone new to handle even a small part of your processes can be frightening, especially if you’re a founder and this is your first time delegating components of your business to someone less experienced.

What if they don’t get it? What if they mess up? What if they create more work? After all your strategy and planning, your passion and care, you don’t want an intern who’s more hindrance than help.

Good news: By taking a few concrete steps ahead of time, you can increase the ROI from any ecommerce internship by setting both your store and your new hire up for success.



5 Steps to a Great Ecommerce Internship

1. Set and share your vision and strategy.

This doesn’t mean having a clear vision in your own head. Rather, it means making sure your vision is clearly documented and can be easily communicated to your entire team, including interns.

2. Define a framework.

With a new and inexperienced hire coming in, check that all roles and processes in your business are well-defined. Interns need to know where to turn when they have questions.

3. Define the goal of the internship.

Hiring an intern without a clear objective for their position only sets them up for failure. This isn’t related to specific tasks (though that comes next) but to the end goal of this hire. Why did you need an ecommerce intern? What metrics are you looking to improve? What processes are you facilitating?

Defining a goal for their role doesn’t just give your intern a sense of purpose and responsibility; it also ensures that they contribute meaningfully to your business.

4. Define specific tasks for the role.

Rather than allowing a new intern to wander around, looking for ways to contribute on their own, predefine specific tasks for them to attack. These should be tasks the new hire will be capable of handling on Day 1, but at least a few should have the potential to grow and develop into larger responsibilities.

5. Select an experienced mentor.

Be sure to designate an experienced mentor for your intern — someone who can oversee their tasks, provide feedback, and be available to answer questions as they arise.

Bonus Tip: Candidate Selection

As far as vetting inexperienced candidates for an ecommerce internship, the key in this situation is trust and confidence.

Basic skills for helping to run an ecommerce store can be taught, from customer service to managing products to executing social media campaigns. Additional skills will vary depending on the specifics of your particular store and the areas where you need support. In general, though, hiring a person you trust is paramount, especially if your company is in its early stages.

Ecommerce Interns: Final Thoughts

By following the tips above, you’ll design an ecommerce internship that contributes meaningful support to your business. With a trustworthy hire completing well-defined tasks with purpose, vision, and guidance, you can rest easy knowing that your new intern will ease the load, not add to it.



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