Ka-Ching Kaput? Get an E-Store!
With brick-and-mortar companies facing steep decreases in foot traffic and revenue, finding online business solutions is essential to adapting to our changing world. According to eMarketer’s estimates, “US consumers will spend $709.78 billion on ecommerce in 2020, representing an increase of 18.0%. Brick-and-mortar retail spending, however, is expected to decrease 14.0% to $4.184 trillion.” The benefits of e-commerce are extensive like higher profit margins and better marketing opportunities. So, if your ka-ching’s kaput, get an e-store!
Remind me, what is E-Commerce?
Let’s first go over what exactly e-commerce is. E-commerce is any commercial transaction that involves transfer of information on the Internet. That includes an ecommerce website, Amazon and eBay, mobile apps, Facebook Marketplace, Instagram shoppable ads, and more. Having an e-store allows a business to be open 24/7, sell anywhere, and to anyone. Now let’s dive into the advantages.
It’s significantly less expensive to run an e-store than a physical storefront. If you’re selling on your own website, then you’re only paying hosting fees and perhaps some platform fees (depending on your chosen e-commerce platform). Many times, the store itself is free but you may need to pay a developer to create and setup your e-store. Of course, these fees are miniscule compared to a brick-and-mortar store. Many businesses start off selling online, and as they grow, are able to save up for a physical storefront.
In just a few clicks, your ecommerce store can be live and making sales. Well, if it’s a simple store at least. The fast go-to-market time of e-commerce is one of the reasons it’s so enticing. WooCommerce for WordPress, Shopify, BigCommerce, Squarespace – they all offer branded website e-store solutions that can be setup in a short time. Marketplaces like Amazon and eBay simply require an account. All these solutions empower businesses to start selling online, quickly and effectively.
Capture Shoppers First – Online
87% of shoppers start their search online. They can compare prices easily and quickly across different stores and brands, view reviews, and check availability. Makes sense, no? Even the shoppers that end up buying from physical stores will still start their search online. It’s important for companies to have an online presence so shoppers can come across their products and services when browsing.
Content Marketing Activities
An e-commerce website allows you to display endless information about your product or service: lengthy product descriptions and details, instructions, customer reviews, FAQ, and supporting blogs. This allows you to perform heavy content marketing activities: write blogs to educate people on your industry and offerings, create videos with helpful content (how-to, tips, etc.), and share all these items on social media.
When shoppers do research, they want to make sure that a company’s website and social channels have thorough and adequate information – creating trust between brand and customer. And don’t forget email marketing. Share content in your emails and build a complete strategy around your business. Run a lead generation campaign to collect more emails too.
Digital Marketing Activities
This is a fun one. When you sell online, you have various ways of driving traffic to your store and increasing brand awareness. Social media ads, Google display ads, and paid search ads can all help you reach new audiences and deliver key messages. Offering a discount? Use ads so customers can land directly on the discounted product. Releasing a new product or service? Run an ad campaign to spread the word.
Search engine optimization (SEO) can help your e-store rank on Google through keywords, content, and link-building activities. Visitors can find your website organically and browse your store. And marketing automation can help drive those visitors further down the funnel. If customers view certain products, you can retarget them and deliver ads showing those products. If a user abandons their cart, retargeting them with an ad displaying a special offer can push them to buy.
Gain Customer Data Insights
It’s never been easier to capitalize on customer experience than with an e-commerce. When you sell online, you collect customer data – emails, phone numbers, birthdays, locations. Using this information ethically and within GDRP and privacy laws, businesses can analyze and act upon their findings to offer customers a better experience and to better understand their market.
E-Commerce, Your Business Buddy
So, are you sold? Does e-commerce seem to be like the solution to revitalizing your cashflow? Maybe, or maybe not. If it is, feel free to learn more about e-commerce websites and its various applications. Contact us too and let’s discuss your options.