COST-EFFECTIVE ECOMMERCE SOLUTIONS FOR DORSET RETAILERS
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Even if you already have a thriving business in Poole High Street or Bournemouth Town Centre, there really are many solid reasons for launching an ecommerce website today. Ecommerce can form the perfect solution for both you and your customers. It is so important for any serious business in Dorset like yours to have an online presence in today’s market. We’re here to listen to you, and answer all your questions. We can find the right solution for you, and get you up and running in no time at all.
12 Reasons Why Dorset Businesses Could Grow With An Ecommerce Shop
1. Improved brand awareness
With ecommerce, you can grow your business into a recognisable and well-loved brand. By creating an online presence, you can boost your customers’ experience by including social media pages, so your business can become more than just a mere shop. Your website will become the shopfront for your entire enterprise. From there you can expand your activities and your product ranges, without the need for a relocation of physical address.
2. Lower overheads
When starting out in ecommerce you can avoid most of the expensive upfront costs a traditional bricks-and-mortar Dorset high street shop might incur. Unlike physical shops, ecommerce shops tend to carry fewer overheads and lower operating costs, so expanding your activity by including an online element does not necessarily have to incur a large risky investment. If you are thinking of expanding your company, adding an online component might well be a cheaper option than another physical shop. After the initial setup costs of your ecommerce shop, the ongoing costs for things such as maintenance will be quite low compared to the potential increase in profits and the money saved from paying rent for another bricks-and-mortar shop. Also, unlike a physical shop, an ecommerce shop does not need to be physically staffed by people several hours a day, and helps keep the wage bill down.
3. Cheaper advertising
In comparison to traditional methods of advertising, digital advertising is quite cheap, flexible, and well-suited to different budgets. For most companies a mixture of digital and traditional advertising generally works best, and many now advertise digitally as their principal method. One example of a very simple, cheap and effective way of digital advertising is through the use of email, but there are many other channels available such as Google Ads.
There scalability of ecommerce means you can optimize your budget and expenditure in-line with your overall business strategy. An ecommerce site offers the flexibility to increase your product range, add more lines etc. as your business grows, and to adjust your business to the requirements and demands of your customers. Adjustment of your expenditure in response to your customers purchasing behaviour is relatively easy, so if your customer base grows you can quickly upscale your activity, or vice versa. At the same time you can increase your payment and shipping options with no worry over outgrowing your premises. If your products are seasonal, you can adjust your inventory as and when required with just a few clicks.
5. Content marketing opportunities
Your ecommerce website opens up a goldmine of marketing opportunity. While building your ecommerce shop it can be optimised (SEO) to boost your chances of getting found by search engines and therefore attract new customers. With digital marketing, other techniques such as pay-per-click advertising (PPC), social media marketing and email can all be integrated with your overall strategy. Your online shop will enable you to provide to your customers a great deal of marketing information about your products, for example: in-depth descriptions, product comparisons, and all with an up-to-date inventory of stock and pricing. It all helps your customers to make their purchasing decisions. You can use the web pages of your ecommerce site to tell your customer about your business, the story of your brand, your ethics, and how your products were made, their usage etc. This can be further enhanced by the use of videos and blog posts to engage your customers. As an example, food companies often provide recipes, and ideas to offer inspiration. This develops your brand, fosters a good customer relationship, and differentiates you from the competition.
6. More accurate customer targeting
If you have an ecommerce shop, digital marketing tools such as Google Analytics are your friend. They enable you to gather accurate data on your customers’ behaviour, providing you with the flexibility to adapt and adjust your marketing strategy. With these tools you will be able to harvest customer data and statistics from which you can closely track their movements around your shop, which products attract the most attention, and other factors such as their buying habits, how often they return to your shop and customer loyalty. This allows you to accurately market your promotions with personalised offers to specific or loyal customers.
7. Convenience and a better customer experience
Your ecommerce shop will be open 24/7 and your customers will be able to purchase from you whenever they need without being restricted to their location. People often don’t have the time to pop down to Bournemouth or Poole town centre, so more frequently than ever they are choosing to shop online to find the products they require. So if you can appeal to your customer base with this level of flexibility, you might well be able to expand further towards others looking for the same level of convenience.
Many people find shopping online a more comfortable experience. They find it smoother and less stressful than having to leave home and battle through the traffic to the town centre, possibly only to find the product they need is out of stock. They can also avoid pushy salesmen and suchlike. For people with a disability, shopping online can often be a practical necessity. You can meet this demand, and your ecommerce shop can now even have a ‘chatbot’ that answers your customers’ questions 365/24/7.
8. Increase your reach — a global opportunity
The Internet is now accessible to practically everybody in the developed world. There are literally millions of people around the world who could find your ecommerce website. You have, therefore, the opportunity to reach a global audience. So if you want to increase your reach to a wider market, way beyond that of just the high street, a website custom-built for ecommerce is the way to go. Even if you are a traditional brick-and-mortar Dorset business, there are many opportunities through ecommerce, depending on the nature of your product or service that can boost your revenue. For instance, you may have a locally based business, such as a locksmith providing replacement locks and keys to the local community, but globally you may be able to sell unusual or specialist items that may be hard to locate on a local level. Expanding globally might allow you to develop the breadth and scope of your business in new and innovative ways.
9. Serving Niche Markets
If your business is selling rare or collectable items, it might be difficult to find a local buyer in Dorset. With the global reach of the internet things are different. It is now relatively easy to find purchasers for unusual and highly individual items. Your market may be niche, but the breadth of an internet search allows potential customers to find you, and you will be able to open your business to a deeper consumer reach.
10. Browsing Shoppers
Research continues to show that over 75% of shoppers browse online for product information, especially on the marketplaces such as Ebay and Amazon, even if they end up buying from a physical shop. Shoppers often like to go online to compare prices, brands, customer reviews and a lot more before making a purchase. They might be just browsing to check up on store locations and opening hours, but it’s important that customers can find this information. The only way you can be sure that potential customers find your products is to establish your presence online.
11. You’re Always Open
Your potential customers don’t just browse around online and research products they make purchases online too, and ecommerce makes it very easy for them. The ease with which a consumer can make a purchase online removes a lot of the friction points and barriers that might otherwise stand between you, the seller, and your customer. By making the experience as easy, convenience and enjoyable for them as you possibly can, it becomes very easy for them to click that ‘by its now’ button, wherever they live, in any time zone, and at any time of their day. For them, your shop is always open 365/24/7!
More and more retailing is moving online, and that is a trend that is not going to reverse any time soon! Year after year, high street retail is diminishing and losing out to online trade. The statistics don’t lie, you just have to look at the number of large and previously successful high street retailers in Poole and Bournemouth that have shut up shop due to the decline in high street footfall. For survival in retail today an online shop is not just an option, it has become a necessity.
So as we have seen, ecommerce offers businesses like yours a wide range of marketing opportunities to sell your products and services, boost sales and generate more profit.
Setting up an ecommerce shop on the whole is fairly easy, low-risk and low cost, regardless of whether you already run a physical shop in Poole or Bournemouth. An ecommerce shop offers you the possibility for a steady passive income and a respectable ROI in the long run.
We can build you a well-developed, sturdy and reliable website, which will make these goals easily attainable. For your customers you will be able to offer a 24/7, round the clock service, that is both convenient and a pleasure for them to use. The trick is to sell where your customers are located; if their location is online, then to satisfy your customers’ expectations, online is exactly where you should be selling!
Are you looking for a reliable, secure ecommerce solution? Speak with Colin to find out more
…and meanwhile, if you just want some plain simple facts on the basic principles please check our page: what is e-commerce?