How to open your online store? 4 reasons why your business needs an online store like air to breath
For the last month I bought things on the Internet 3 times. As the statistics show, I'm not alone - one out of five people regularly makes purchases on online stores. In 2017, people spent on purchases through online stores about 14 billions - imagine what opportunities you are missing right now.
If you have a real store, you are already in a winning position. You already have a cool base, that you do not face problems with the wrong goods selection, warehouse rent and other typical miscalculations of newcomers. You are no longer a beginner, and this is different from hundreds of other entrepreneurs who also want to launch an online store. You have stuffed the bumps, got the experience, understood what people want and what to give them - and it's great!
And you have already chosen a niche - at this stage very many entrepreneurs are hanging out. So the first stage has already been passed.
It's time to move on.
You can do this in different ways. Someone else buys a couple of stores, someone absorbs the competitor's network, someone enters the international markets. Someone starts an online store and develops a business - and this is ideal if you want to expand, develop your brand and get a lot more profit (and do not spend some millions on it).
Let's talk about why you need an online store - let's start with the extension. You want to expand your business and earn more with the same efforts?
The first reason: business expansion
This is a simple way to get more profit - but the word "simple" is probably better quoted. In theory, everything looks simple: work, develop, open stores in other cities, regions and countries. But as you know, in reality everything is much more complicated, and the majority of entrepreneurs will never leave the "work" stage.
With an online store you can go further without investing in it millions. You only need a starting budget (although you can work on dropshipping) and a couple of months to create a site and optimize - investments in this case will be tens of times lower than you would spend on opening even one more real store.
And it's more effective, of course. Another real store will give you buyers from just one more city, and an online store is thousands of customers from all over the world.
You will no longer have regional restrictions. Imagine your own chain of shops in every city, from a million to a regional center - it's breathtaking, right? Online trading is exactly about this.
Of course, a lot of new online stores get a couple of clients a month then close in a few months - but this is already a matter of quality work of programmers and marketers. Just hire professionals to give your work an advantage!
The second reason: savings
The online store will cost much less than your existing business. You will not need to buy a place or pay every month for rent, pay for equipment, such as a cash register, refrigerators (if it's a grocery store), shop windows and shelving. also, about issues payments, the purchase of CCTV cameras and wages for employees too, so you do not have to worry about all these.
For an online store you need a lot less employees. A content manager who will upload new products to the site, another manager who will answer questions from customers, accountant so you can take it all in your hands. In this case, the savings will be even more.
The third reason: online service in the future
Imagine: six months after launch, your online store will overtake the real store for profit. In a year you will compare income from the real and online store, you will give up the real and focus 100% on the online store.
It sounds like incredible, right? But experience shows that everything is possible. Moreover, this situation happens quite often: once the online store starts to bring much more profit than the existing real store. Then you can expand offline or vice versa, close the store to pay all the time to your site - your choice.
And over time, you can switch to fulfillment. Fulfillment: this is when you give the reception and processing of orders, together with the dispatch of goods, to the contractor firm. It's very simple - you develop a store and think through a strategy, and all the routine work is done by specialists on outsourcing.
Of course, this is all possible only if you have high turnover and profit. If you want to come to this, be sure to find a team of professional developers and marketers - your store should be fast, modern, correctly optimized (internal and external optimization) and safe. Without it, your idea, even if it's innovative and cool, just can not be done.
It has its own characteristics. For example, if you have a low rent and goods that customers prefer to touch and twist in their hands before buying - do not aim immediately for a full transition to online. Perhaps the online store will be a pleasant addition for you, and not the main earnings.
Here is an example. If you sell kids toys, you probably saw how mothers with children choose the right toy. They can spend an hour on this - the children will have time to twist in the hands of 30 designers and machines, arrange a couple of scandals and calm down, and then still choose the right product. Most likely, parents will prefer to buy toys in such a store around the corner, than on an unfamiliar site, although another scenario is possible - the mother of such a child writes to the smartphone the article code and searches it through Google, sees the price of the same product 20% less and buys online . If you have such a small shop around the corner for which you do not have to pay a huge lease, it would be logical not to think about a complete transition to the online from the very beginning.
Another thing, if it is not so important for buyers to touch the product before buying. In that case (and even if you have to pay a lot for rent every month), switching to an online platform can be a real rescue. If you do not have a conditional small shop with toys and a conditional large room with, for example, large household appliances (or plumbing) - think about how to go online. This thought can be the beginning of something great - or just much more profitable.
The fourth reason: simplicity and convenience
Let's talk about why online shopping - it's easier than regular stores.
Shortly , with the online store it will be much easier to take orders and sell goods, accept payment, serve several customers at once, communicate with customers, and do repeat sales. And it's easier to advertise. Let's take step by step:
Just accept orders and sell
You do not need to stand behind the counter from morning to night (or hire a person to do). Orders are accepted automatically 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, you (or your manager) will simply answer letters or calls. Well, send the goods, of course.
When things go well and you switch to fulfillment, you will get rid of it too - to take orders and send them to customers will be a special service.
Just accept payment
People often pay for goods in cash after delivery or pay in the warehouse (if there is a self-delivery)also they use Internet banking or other payment systems
Here, too, everything is simple - you need to connect different payment systems to give the buyer a choice. Everything is almost like in a real store.
Just serve a large number of customers
What will you do if a hundred of customers come to you at the same time? To be happy and try to have time to serve everyone, of course. With the online store, you only have the first item, because no one needs to serve, buyers themselves carefully review the photos, read the description, put the goods in the basket and issue obedient orders. Your task is to fill your Internet store with quality content.
Just communicate with customers and do repeat sales
How do you communicate with customers? Just say hello and try to help him.
If so, you miss a very important thing. You can seriously increase sales and the number of customers by sending emails and sms - the addresses of all mails and mobile numbers will be in your database, so it will be incredibly easy to make a newsletter about new promotions or discounts, this is really effective.
There are several simple and effective solutions for automating communication with the client - for example, our "SMS-informer." With it, you can automate the sending of messages to the client (for example, messages about registration, sending and order status). You can also configure the messages that will be sent to the store administrator each time when customers make out new orders. SMS-informing really works and helps to improve the speed of work. And speed is a reputation, positive feedback and image, that is an increase in the number of new customers.
New customers are excellent, but many forget about repeated sales - and very vain. Most likely, your business is not focused on one-time sales, but on loyal customers - in this case, to lose the chance to make them even more loyal will be silly.
When you have an online store, you can very easily use the tools for repeat sales. Discounts for regular customers, savings programs and gift coupons, mailings about especially advantageous offers - tie the buyer to yourself, make him come again and again. With an online store it's pretty simple, the main thing is to just do it!
Easier to advertise
Outdoor advertising is expensive and hits the squares, not the target audience. Leaflets and flyers are cheap, but live to the nearest trash.
Online store advertising is cheaper (but not always), more efficient and easier, and campaign results are easily measured using web analytics tools: Google Analytics and Yandex Metrics. You will be able to find out the portrait of your client, how many pages he viewed, pick and adjust the right advertising for his target audience and, most importantly, show this advertisement only to his target audience. And all this is configured within 14 days, it's enough just to contact our professionals!
It is important to remember: the online store works great for sales and for manufacturers of goods, and will not be superfluous for almost any business. Exceptions are cases if you have a regular store near the house, in which bread-milk is sold, a little bit of home-made goods, a little alcohol and cigarettes - then, yes, most likely, you do not need an online store.
In most other cases, it at least does not hurt. An additional channel for the sale of goods, who will refuse this? Everyone is now looking for products on the Internet, so it's easier, faster and more choices. And, as you can see, there are many advantages to the online store.
And if you take into consideration possible prospects, the question of whether it is worth starting an online store, generally disappears. This is a very profitable business, which can become much more profitable than your existing business. All you need to do is choose the right team of professionals, the team that will help to successfully create and untwist your offspring - it's better if it's an SEO-Store!