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How an online shop can boost your brick and mortar sales

You may already have an established high street shop presence, or you may have just started your new business venture, and you may be looking to boost your business’ sales and think that perhaps having an online shop is just the answer you were looking for.

While most business’ today have an online presence, some simply don’t take full advantage of having an online shop and what it can do to help grow your business. When a customer has a need for a particular item or service, one of the first places people look in today’s world is Google. If your business doesn’t have an online presence, you’re missing out on potential sales which could be pivotal in helping your business grow.

In this post, we’re going to walk you through some ways which having an online shop can help boost your brick and mortar sales and can help you to grow your business.

Make it easy for the customer

As mentioned earlier, when someone needs goods or services, one of the first places they look is Google. This is the first place that potential customers may find your business so having a good business profile on Google with up to date information such as your business address, contact information and opening times can help that user find what they’re looking for quicker.

However, having a good business profile won’t help you rank on page 1 of Google. In order to start to rank higher on search engines like Google, you’ll need to set up your own online shop. Our e-commerce experts can help you with this – whatever stage you’re at – and even if you already trade through websites such as Etsy or Ebay.

Once your shop is up and running, Google will be able to crawl your website in order to rank it, which can take up to 4 weeks. This is where making sure that your product descriptions, page titles, alt tags and header tags are created using carefully chosen keywords. This is so that Google can recognise these keywords and serve your website when it best fits the query for the user on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) page, which is where a search engine will display a page of results that match a search query.

Using on-page Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), helps you rank higher in search engines for particular keywords, making it easier for customers to find your website. The higher you rank on a search engine the click-through rate (CTR) will increase, which helps bring in more organic visitors to your website, providing it’s relevant for their search and satisfies their query. If you’re looking for more information on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and how it can benefit your website, why not read our SEO guides.

Target the local area

You can use an online shop to do more than just drive traffic – you can also use it to target users within your area. For example, a user searches on Google for ‘clothing shops near me’ and a list of search engine results appear. If you have a Google My Business profile, the address you listed will mean that if your website is relevant to the users’ query and you’re in the same area, your business listing will rank quite high and may be featured on the ‘places’ (2) result.

You will also notice that there is a section of sponsored shopping at the top of the Search Engine Ranking Page (SERP) example image. This is called ‘Google Shopping’ (1). Once you have products set up on your shop to sell, you can take advantage of this tool to drive visitors to your site and ultimately increase sales. EKM have a team of in-house Google certified experts who can guide you and advise you on the best approach for your business.

Make use of all tools available

Social media should be a part of your business strategy whether you’re a small business or an established one. While social media was primarily used to connect to friends, colleagues and share updates in the past, it has now become another tool in your work belt to reach your audience and connect with customers alike.

Not only does it help connect your audience but it also provides you with another medium in which to share and spread your brand. Instagram for example, is the perfect platform to display your products in a creative way as our most recent blog explains how to create high-quality images for your Instagram. Meanwhile, Facebook is somewhere you can build a deeper connection to your audience and share more detailed updates and news.

Social media isn’t only for keeping up to date with your followers and sharing news; social media now plays a pivotal role in supporting your websites Search Engine Ranking Page (SERP) rankings. If you choose to, social media also allows you to conduct advertising and re-marketing (where you can re-target people with sponsored adverts that have visited your site previously, on sites like Facebook, Instagram and Youtube) that can help influence the buyer journey as another touchpoint in the buying process.

Make it work

Ultimately, you need to make your website work for you. Having particular features available to you such newsletter sign-ups and loyalty points can all help you reach your engaged audience and incentivise them to purchase goods from the store – you can learn more about EKM’s features here.

For example, by asking for consent during the checkout flow, you can encourage repeat custom by offering specific discounts and promotions such as to shop in-store by offering an in-store only discount.

Building an email list can also prove to be quite a valuable tool to drive sales to your brick and mortar store. One benefit from this is being able to offer exclusive in-store discounts to customers who are signed up to receive your newsletter.

You could also give your customers the option of ‘free click and collect’ which not only saves you on shipping costs but may also encourage additional purchases while visiting the store.

There are endless ways in which having an online shop can help not only boost your brick and mortar sales, but also open your business up to the world of online shopping. If you aren’t already selling online you could be missing out on a large share of e-commerce sales for your business – can you really afford that?

If you’d like to learn more about selling online or simply how EKM can help you grow your online business, speak to one of our experts on 0333 004 0333 or get started here.

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