The numbers are in for the XMAS season, online shopping is up again. Brick and mortar shopping is down.
So the question is this: why aren’t you selling online?
Now obviously not every business has goods to sell online, but if you are a retailer (or wholesaler for that matter), you are missing the boat without an online component. I hear some people say, we have too many items, it would be too hard to put everything online. Ok, if you don’t want to put everything online, how about a list of special items for the web? Think of items that are reasonable to ship and that are a bargain online. People search online via Google Shopping and other comparison shopping tools. So if your price isn’t competitive, you won’t sell too many items. Can’t think of what to sell, how about offering a gift card for sale online?
eCommerce gets easier and easier to add to your website. If you have a WordPress site for instance, you can use WooCommerce, an excellent eCommerce plugin. Only want to sell one or 2 items? Just add PayPal buy now buttons.
One of the benefits of eCommerce is that it really is inexpensive to sell online. If you already have the items in stock, the cost to run an eCommerce site is only marginally higher than a regular website. You have to have a secure certificate, and be ever vigilant updating software. Other than that costs are few. Now of course if you small business starts selling an inordinate amount of goods you may need to hire fulfillment people. But what a great problem to have!
Online shopping will continue to increase. Stores with no ability to sell online will continue to decline. Companies with a dual strategy will have a chance to survive and flourish. The question is, which will you be?
David & Goliath is one of my favorite stories, the classic underdog tale. The story tells of the smaller David fighting the behemoth Goliath.
It’s funny, when I talk to people about small business websites, one of their goals is to try to compete in the marketplace with companies that are 10 times as big. Luckily, websites are the great equalizer. You (David) can fight them (Goliath) on an even playing field. You do not have to be the little guy in the public’s eye. If your website is top notch, you can compete with anyone. Now they may have a bigger budget, but if your site is done correctly there is no way someone can tell that you are a small company. Perception is a major factor, and even more so when your company is mainly eCommerce with no brick and mortar presence.
I actually met with someone and one of their goals was exactly what I discussed above, that is to not appear like a small company. They deal with a lot of big institutional type customers globally and they want their website to reflect this. They don’t want to look like a mom-and-pop shop with a couple of employees. Well, we will be able to achieve this despite a smaller budget. We will do this by finding alternative methods of getting to the same end point. We will build a great-looking site with an e-commerce component that will allow their customers to order easily and to hopefully improve her percentage of closed business. Anyone can work with a huge budget, but we find solutions that small businesses can afford.
This is why I love the internet-age. This is truly a time is history where the little guy can compete. If you are good at what you do, or have an excellent product, you can get it to the world. And the mechanism to deliver your product or service to the world is your website.
If you need help developing a new website and want to tackle the Goliaths of the world, contact us today.