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3 Chrome Extensions That Can Boost Your Ecommerce Business Looking for a big year in 2018? (And who isn't?) Consider these Chrome extensions to better outfit your ecommerce platform for success.

By AJ Agrawal Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Google

One of the best routes any entrepreneur can take to grow is by utilizing the right tools. If you can speed up your processes or obtain a deeper understanding of your customer base through data analysis, your business will benefit -- and your investment in those tools will have been a worthwhile endeavor.

Related: How Chrome Won the War of the Browsers

Thankfully, the days of trial and error are becoming a thing of the past. Entrepreneurs are becoming more and more plugged into the dynamics of everything from how to place products onto Amazon to how to identify the most trustworthy factories on Alibaba. The tool? Credit the power of innovative Chrome extensions which enable software tools to be layered over web pages.

Chrome extensions allow users to have more advanced experiences and operations on websites; extensions are how Grammarly, for instance, initially grew to two million daily users -- because it could enable the spell-check function on nearly every web page online.

Entrepreneurs looking for a big year in 2018, then, should consider implementing the following Chrome extension tools to better prepare their ecommerce platforms for success in the new year.

Buffer

One of the hardest things about launching an ecommerce venture is that in addition to all the time you spend optimizing, refining and managing your own website and business, you also have to invest in your social media presence to stay competitive.

Without a regular flow of content to publish, your social media pages look bland, uninviting or even deserted; and that may lower consumers' confidence in your brand. What's more, your business misses out on a wider audience and the user engagement that can drive social proof and increase conversions.

Don't let this be you! Regardless of how crowded the social media space gets in your industry or how insanely busy you are working your business, your social media game has to stay on point.

Here, Buffer can help: It's one of the best ways to share content across Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn from anywhere on the web, directly integrating with your social media platforms for a seamless customer experience.

Buffer can assist you in putting up posts and spreading content out through the day, so that that content doesn't all appear at once (making you look like you managed to dedicate just a few minutes to curating your social media profiles). Enable your Chrome browser extension and give it a go; you'll be surprised how much easier it can be to stay engaged across multiple social media outlets.

Related: Built-In Chrome Ad Blocker Coming Early 2018

And, certainly, time is the point here: As an entrepreneur, it's perhaps your most valuable asset. That means that any tools which promise to save you time, optimize your processes or make your life easier should be at the forefront of your efforts, and that you should always keep an eye out for the latest and greatest enhancements to conducting business.

Factory Confirm

Starting an ecommerce company begins with establishing a relationship with the right factory to source your products, but it can be incredibly difficult for a lone entrepreneur to sift through countless potential manufacturers. Even using a resource like Alibaba, which is designed to facilitate international business and help entrepreneurs find products and suppliers quickly and efficiently, can be a struggle for entrepreneurs aiming to get in touch with the factories they need.

About 80 percent of the manufacturers on Alibaba, in fact, are trading companies or agents, not actual factories equipped to handle the needs of a new ecommerce vendor.

That's why a Chrome extension like Factory Confirm can be an invaluable tool. It analyzes over 20 data points among company pages, external third party searches and its manufacturer's, Sourcify's, own data, to authenticate manufacturer listings on Alibaba, ensuring that entrepreneurs connect to legitimate factories for free.

Jungle Scout

According to Statista, Amazon generated $22.99 billion in third-party seller-service revenues in 2016, and on Cyber Monday alone, sellers themselves received orders for more than 28 million products. Across the globe, the number of third-party sellers successfully operating on Amazon continues to rise, making it an attractive option for ecommerce vendors looking to increase their audience.

But with practically everything imaginable available on Amazon (if it's not on Amazon, do you even need it?), entrepreneurs find themselves wondering if their product can make a big enough impact on the platform to make listing it there worthwhile.

Related: This New Google Chrome Extension Lets Colleagues Share Web Pages Using Beeping Sounds

Jungle Scout is a Chrome extension that enables users to validate product ideas with trustworthy sales data, like product rank, sales, revenue, reviews and ratings. If you're wondering if your product idea will make a splash in such a large market, this tool could help you develop an informed strategy.

AJ Agrawal

CEO of Alumnify; Entrepreneur, Writer, and Marketer

AJ Agrawal is the CEO and co-founder of Alumnify. an alumni-engagement platform.

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