Posted by Drew Melendy on Aug 19, 2019 11:03:50 AM
5 Fundamental Rules for Bringing Your Brick-and-Mortar Online
If your brick-and-mortar is trying to get a foothold in the digital world, it may seem like a formidable task. Luckily technology advances make it easier to get up and running online.
But even with the help of technology, there is a lot to contemplate before its use. In particular, you will want to consider these 5 fundamental rules for bringing your brick-and-mortar into the digital space.
1) Choose Your Ecommerce Provider Wisely
When choosing an ecommerce platform, it’s important to ask yourself a few questions. What tools do you need to run your business? Do you need certain integrations?
An all-in-one ecommerce platform is ideal when you don’t want to pay for extras, but you may need very particular integrations to work with the technology you already have, such as a Shopify website. What's more, you can find integrations, like Sezzle, to increase your customers' average order value!
Another large consideration for brick-and-mortars is whether or not they would like a Buy Online Pick Up In Store (BOPIS) options. When looking for different platforms, think of what tools you need or already use for your business.
Investing in technology that can carry you into the future is possibly the most important consideration of all. Find a platform that will help your operations run smoothly as you grow and scale.
It's not just about getting your business up and running online. Your platform should help you grow your revenue, and then support your business as demand grows. If you outgrow your systems, you're going to be spending more time and money on the next tech solution, so it's wise to consider this sooner rather than later.
And lastly, set up your online presence with a forward-thinking company you trust. If you're not tech-savvy, choose one with a customer support team you can always rely on.
2) Use Multi-channel Marketing to Reach Customers Where They Are
Multi-channel retailing is the practice of selling on multiple channels such as websites, retail stores, social media, mobile, etc. When you’re on many channels, it’s easy to meet your customers anywhere they are.
If they're on your website, add a banner to "join the conversation on Facebook." If they put a dress in their cart from your website, retarget them with social media advertisements to accelerate the check out process.
Don't forget to send a text and email when big sales are going on! Your loyal shoppers will appreciate being in the loop. For new customer acquisition, use existing services like Facebook & Google ads.
These are all excellent tactics to meet customers where they are and to encourage certain customer behavior, such as driving foot traffic to your storefront with a sale advertised on your website.
3) Never Stop Engaging with Your Customers
This should be a golden rule. Going digital should not stop you from engaging with your customer base as you would in your store.
People are loyal to brands because they have an emotional connection with them. Connect with your customers, whether it be social media, through customer support, or a personalized discount (Hello, birthdays!). Building relationships is critical to any business. People buy with those they trust!
4) Make the Shopping Experience as Frictionless as Possible
Today’s brands know they need to deliver a seamless shopping experience across all channels.
Fortunately, technologies have paved the way for faster, easier, and more convenient shopping. It has not only optimized check out, but it also allows for greater speed, personalization, and wow experiences.
Technologies can help you streamline these processes so you can keep a smooth experience for you and your customers.
5) Protect Your Brand with Multiple Ways to Shop
It makes me nervous when I hear, "I just sell on Facebook," or "I only sell on my website." If you put all your effort and resources into selling on a single channel, you risk catastrophic failure.
Social media algorithms can shift and block your customers from seeing new posts. Websites can crash. Brick-and-mortar sales can shrink. Don't rely on one channel to make all of your sales. Integrate ways to shop from mobile apps, social media, websites and even in person. With multiple sales channels, you always have a fail-safe no matter what happens.
Successful retailers understand the need to bring their physical stores online. There is more opportunity than ever to heighten brand awareness, amplify revenue, and improve customer experiences.
However, It’s not without careful consideration of an ecommerce platform that can serve their needs. This requires an understanding of the importance of keeping connected with their customers, how multi-channel retailing fits into that, and making certain they are protecting their brand by spreading their efforts and resources to other channels.