How To Make The Transition From Brick-And-Mortar To Online?
With the development of the Internet, online stores have become a trend. This article will introduce the advantages of launching an online store, how to make the transition from brick-and-mortar to online, and how to promote your online store.
It is no doubt that online stores can expand your product sales and increase your profit income. After learning the introduction of some strategies in this article, I believe that you will be able to deepen your understanding of online stores and make decisions easily.
What is Brick-And-Mortar?
A brick-and-mortar store refers to a store with a clear physical location that consumers can directly visit. Such stores where consumers can directly perceive products are called brick-and-mortar stores. Brick-and-mortar stores are a so-called traditional way of doing business. This is the limitation of brick-and-mortar stores. For example, we can only sell our products to consumers within a certain distance. With the development of the Internet, many merchants have opened online stores.
7 Reasons to Make the Transition from Brick-And-Mortar to Online
Due to some objective factors, brick-and-mortar store stores in the retail industry have been hit to a certain extent. Coupled with the vigorous development of the Internet, the development of online stores has ushered in opportunities. By opening an online store, we can increase our income. In short, an online store can bring these benefits to merchants:
1. Cost-effective Expansion
The cost of opening a brick-and-mortar store is relatively high, such as rent, renovation costs, employee costs, and so on. Compared with physical stores, online stores are much cheaper, and the prices provided by e-commerce platforms are low, which many people can afford.
2. Increase Brand Awareness
For small and medium-sized sellers, brick-and-mortar stores are geographically constrained, resulting in high expansion costs. However, online stores don’t have to worry about this problem. Merchants can easily sell their products all over the world, so they can easily increase their popularity and expand sales.
3. Increase Customer Reach
Online stores can increase the number of buyers. Because of the removal of geographical restrictions, the number of customers faced has also increased, so merchants have the opportunity to reach new customers, which is also helpful for increasing the sales of merchants.
4. Round-the-clock Sales
Merchants need to be available 24/7 if they want to stay competitive, which is hard to do in a brick-and-mortar store but can be easily achieved if you have an online store. Achieve 24/7 sales and help merchants get customer orders 24 hours a day.
5. Added Brand Value
Opening an online store can help merchants and customers establish a stable and trusting relationship, introduce products in detail, and learn about the use evaluations of customers who have purchased products, which is also conducive to improving the added value of the brand and making it easier for consumers to buy.
6. Increase Customer Engagement
Launching an online store can help merchants and consumers build more connections. In addition, it can provide a variety of contact methods, and it is also convenient for customers to share orders with their friends. So it can improve customer participation and expands influence.
7. Improve Customer Satisfaction
When shopping on an online platform, customers have full freedom to choose, whether it is the delivery time or location of the product, it will give customers enough space to choose. Moreover, online sales are helpful for customers to compare and choose products that can meet their needs completely.
Strategies to Move your Brick and Mortar Store Online
Due to the development of the Internet, many merchants are looking for how to convert brick-and-mortar stores to online sales, which means that we have to learn how to design e-commerce stores, how to do shipping and order fulfillment, and how to do marketing and customer service.
1. Set Up an E-commerce Store
For brick-and-mortar stores, setting up an e-commerce store may be difficult, but many e-commerce platforms are becoming more streamlined, which is more user-friendly. So we can do simple learning. Choose a theme that fits our product, then publish and promote our website. Because everyone has a different aesthetic, don’t expect your store setup to be perfect, just keep up the good work.
Another benefit of an online store is that it sells 24/7, so remember to set your welcome phrase. In addition, e-commerce stores can accumulate customer information for remarketing, so be sure to add remarketing ads to the form, so that customers can continue to visit and bring continuous traffic to our online store.
2. Shipping and Fulfillment
Shipping and fulfillment are challenges we meet when opening an online store. After the customer places an order, we need to be responsible for the transportation and packaging of the product, which increases the logistics level that we do not need to consider when opening a brick-and-mortar store. Therefore, before opening an online store, we need to consider whether to do the packaging and transportation ourselves or outsource it to some professional fulfillment service companies. Although it is said that operating by ourselves will bring higher profits, it often means that we have to bear more risk, so new merchants are advised to choose outsourced fulfillment services.
For the merchants who are new to opening an online store, we recommend choosing 3PL, which means Third Party Logistics. 3PL includes not only order fulfillment, but also storage warehouses and shipping processes around the world. Honest FulPhilment is a professional service provider that provides 3PL. It not only has an experienced team but also has a simple system operation process that anyone can operate. In addition, some task automation and systematization services are provided, which facilitate order fulfillment and logistics tracking.
When a merchant opens an online store, they need to actively recruit customers to increase the number of visits to the store. The traffic of the website is not fixed, so a certain amount of strategy is required. If you have enough budget, you can consider running some auction ads, which can greatly increase our store traffic in a short period of time. If the budget is limited, SEO strategies can also be adopted, although the effect is slow but continuous.
4. Customer Service
Whether it’s a brick-and-mortar store or an online store, customer service needs to be done well. But the content of customer service is different. The customer service of physical stores is more about after-sales service and product quality, while the customer service of online stores is more about logistics and after-sales. Therefore, we can choose reliable logistics service providers and provide alternative online communication methods for customer service.
How to Promote your Online Store: Marketing Strategies you Must Know
In order to maintain the customers we already have and acquire new customers, we can learn strategies to increase traffic for online stores.
1. Create Interesting, Useful Content
Enriching the content of our online store is conducive to increasing customers’ understanding of us. To a certain extent, it can increase the traffic to our store, and it can also help us build our own brand. Many customers tend to choose products they are familiar with, so we must enrich our product content and let customers familiar with our products.
2. Leverage Email Lists
Email is an effective way for merchants to contact customers. Whether it is a brick-and-mortar store or an online store, an email list is helpful for business marketing. Merchants can collect potential customers who are interested in our products for email marketing, and let them know what our products are and what benefits our products can bring them. Therefore, improving the e-mail list is helpful to the marketing of the merchants.
3. Partner with Complementary Brands
Partnerships with complementary brands allow for cross-promotion. For businesses with complementary brands, where the merchant has a common customer base, cross-promotion can help expand the merchant’s potential customer list. So each business partner will have a new set of audiences.
4. SEO-Optimized Online Store
SEO is free promotion, which requires us to pay attention to page content. Promote online stores from three aspects: page title, keywords, and content. It can help search engines understand our page so that when customers search for related products, the content of our online store can be presented to consumers as soon as possible.
5. Advertise on Social Platforms and Search Engines
If the merchant has a limited budget and does not have enough staff to do SEO optimization, then we can also choose to run ads. Whether it is advertising on social media or advertising on Google, merchants can get a lot of traffic in a short period of time.
Although there are specific differences between opening an online store and a physical store, I believe that as long as you take the first step, you will be able to obtain sustained profits. For merchants, it is necessary to have enough patience. Being familiar with our customers, and understanding what customers want, can quickly increase our traffic, thereby increasing the number of orders, so online sales can increase our profit income from another aspect. So let’s start creating an online store now. If you have problems during the process of opening an online store, you can contact us.
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