I recently read an article on CBC that stated during the global pandemic online sales surged 99.3%! That's just Canadian consumers.
It's safe to say you need to be online. Even when the pandemic disappears my prediction is these stats are just going to keep going up. Those who would never think to shop online are even taking the plunge where and when they can to minimize interactions. That said, it's slowly becoming a habit.
So let's talk about the first steps and considerations you need to take to successfully move your business online.
Focus on Design Design is one of the most important investments when it comes to moving your business online. This goes for everything from your social posts to your website and even your newsletter. Take time to find a designer who really understands your brand. This is your visual identity which is a large part of your branding. Essentially it can make or break your sale. For example, have you ever landed on a site and thought - I love the product but this site looks a little sketchy. I know I have and generally, I don't purchase from there either.
For your website, you want to ensure it's easy to navigate. A large part of web design is psychological! There are design rules in place that help your website flow with call-to-actions that promote bookings/sales. This is why it’s key to have a designer by your side.
Find a Platform
It's important to do your research and find the platforms you need to focus on. I usually help my clients find the right ones but if you're not there yet, then there is a lot you can consider on your own.
For social media, think about your target demographics, and what each social platform represents. LinkedIn is perfect for anyone in finance and real estate, whereas Pinterest may be perfect for those in the wedding industry and Instagram for those targeting millennials. Now, these are just rough examples, and of course, you can be on more than one platform, but generally, if your target is on LinkedIn you don't need a TikTok page!
For your website, really think about the must-have functionality. Each platform whether it is Shopify, WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, Kajabi or Teachable all have very specific needs they fulfil. It's really about understanding your offer and how you envision your business growing. Don't forget to consider what best fits your lifestyle and knowledge.
Ensure when choosing your platform that it has integrations with a newsletter mailing service, i.e. MailChimp, as the click-through rate to purchase on a newsletter is 2% higher than social media! The same goes for your blog. A simple SEO trick is to blog consistently. This tells Google there is something new on your site which pushes your ranking to the top.
Secure Payment Systems
Taking payments online for your service? Or maybe you're a product-based business? Ensure you've taken the correct steps in using a secure payment system. Look into SSL Certificates with your provider and research payment systems that are well known internationally, like Paypal, Square or Stripe.
Your website needs to be optimized as more consumers are looking to shop/book right from their phones. It's an easy fix that makes the user experience amazing. Plus with things like Instagram and FB shops you know the number of people shopping directly from their phones is only going up!
Moving your business online has many benefits, it's easier to build a brand experience, track your inventory, understand how your users feel, and collaborate with brands around the world - which also means you can have international sales!
Need some help getting started? Book a complimentary consultation today and let's chat!