The rise of e-commerce has changed the way customers shop. Now, more people are shopping online than ever before, with some reports suggesting that sales through mobile devices have increased by almost 100%.
Instead of buying products in-store, they find on the internet, many consumers are now forgoing physical stores altogether and either choosing to purchase online-only or use both channels in tandem.
As a result, many brick-and-mortar businesses struggle to keep up with the growing e-commerce market. To make matters worse, some of these traditional stores may be required to close due to recent decisions made by major retailers because of the increased competition.
However, there is still hope for those who want to maintain their hold on the brick-and-mortar market. There are many ways to successfully market your business online so you can stay ahead of the e-commerce curve. Here are six of the top strategies that will help you do just that:
1) Create a website for your store
The first step to building an online presence is to create a website for the business. For instance, if an entrepreneur runs a heavy haul trucking service, it can be difficult to find customers if they can’t reach the venture because of limited visibility online.
If they don’t have an eye-catching website, the only thing the potential customers will find is competitors. One needs to stand out from the crowd or risk being left behind because this is how they’ll draw in customers.
The website should include information about the store, such as location and operating hours, as well as interesting articles or blog posts related to the services that customers will likely enjoy reading.
2) Increase your number of social media followers
Social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter are increasingly used as a source of information by online shoppers. Make sure to increase your social media following as much as possible so that you can market your products and services to as many potential customers as possible.
Also, remember to update these accounts regularly so your customers know they can return to them to learn about new promotions and upcoming events.
3) Take advantage of Google AdWords
Google AdWords is an excellent way to get your business in front of potential customers when they are searching for products or services similar to yours. You should take the time to learn how these ads work so that you can determine what type of campaign will be most effective. Set up multiple campaigns that target different geographical areas and demographic groups.
4) Get listed on Google Maps
Having your business listed on Google Maps is another way to increase your visibility online. People who are looking for local businesses will often turn to this service, so they can find the best options in their area.
You should consider adding photos, videos, and links to your other online properties (e.g., Facebook, Twitter) to make your profile more interesting and inviting. This way, other potential customers will want to visit your store and learn about your products and services.
5) Offer coupons or discounts
Offering your customers coupons or discounts is a great way to encourage them to shop at your store. You can create an online campaign that allows people with relevant information (e.g., email address) to access special promotions and offers from your business, or you can have these deals printed on paper and sent by postal mail.
By doing so, you can increase the number of people who shop at your store, which is one of the most effective ways to boost sales. And because you are more likely to make a sale if the customer has visited your website first, you should consider implementing some strategies mentioned previously.
6) Take advantage of local listings
If your business is located in a popular shopping district, make sure to work with the owners of these establishments to share relevant information about yourself and your products or services. You can include events and promotions on community boards, suggest that customers “like” you on Facebook, and offer customers coupons or discounts when they visit.
By doing this, you will be working with other businesses in your area. And because shoppers are likely to shop at stores located in proximity to each other, the chances are good that you will see an increase in traffic. At the same time, neighboring businesses also experience an uptick in sales due to the increased foot traffic.
Running a brick-and-mortar business in a predominantly digital world can be difficult. However, by taking advantage of online marketing strategies, you can increase your exposure and visibility to the online shoppers who represent a considerable portion of consumer spending for goods and services.