The key to being a successful retailer in the coming years will lie in your ability to connect with the new generation of millennials and even younger people who now hold massive buying power in today’s economy. And, if you aren’t using online marketing tactics, then you’re missing out on this very important demographic. You can leverage online marketing to maximize offline sales — here are some helpful strategies and tangible takeaways.
1. Build an online community.
You’re eventual goal should be to pump out material on a regular basis that highlights your expertise in the type of business you run. For example, think of a big company that offers tax preparation services. It runs a blog that features stories about new tax rules or tips on tax exemptions. Perhaps this company holds a networking event with speakers who can answer questions about taxes.
You can do all this even if you’re new to ecommerce. By building an active community, you’re simultaneously creating an owned media outlet that can then be leveraged to promote your retail experience. The idea is to make sure people know that they can not only turn to you for finding a certain type of product, but also trust you to generate opinion about that subject so they can understand it better.
2. Use Google AdWords (and other paid advertising).
3. Connect the dots with e-mail.
4. Make a web design a priority.
People who put together mobile sites nowadays have it down to a science. Everything from load times to placement of certain items on your smart phone screen heavily influences whether or not someone makes a purchase. Do your homework, hire someone with experience in this area, and put together something strong that helps you transition to the online world.
In the end, the path to success is clear. If brick and mortar stores want to survive the ongoing shift to an ecommerce-based economy, they need to invest in ways of optimizing their online experience. How your site looks and how you communicate with the communities you create is almost as important as how much customers connect with your product. If you leverage the online world right, you’ll keep customers that Amazon is only too eager to snatch away from you.