Changing Your Website to E-commerce Will Help Your Business in Uncertain Times

by | Jul 8, 2020

If you run a small business, you are already aware of the impact that Covid19 is playing.

With many business sectors still closed and some slowly reopening, things have never been more challenging.

Added to this, there remains a reluctance from the public to venture out and keep spending. With many new people realising that online shopping is easy, secure, fast and safe, more are adapting to this way of buying.

Is changing your website to E-commerce worth it now?

According to Thomas Bereton, a retail analyst at GlobalData, he has predicted that this upward trend of shopping online will be with us now forever.

People are getting used to buying online and having their purchases delivered to their door.

Although, plenty of people will continue to shop in store and this market is still much larger than purchasing online however, it is probably inevitable that ecommerce will become much stronger overtime.

Changing your website to E-commerce is something that all businesses should investigate, regardless of sector.

As uncertainty remains with local lockdowns and further suggestions that there will be second or third waves of Covid19, getting your business geared up towards online retail is a must.

Image showing customers buying online through an e-commerce website

Moving from bricks-and-mortar to online

It goes without saying that bricks-and-mortar businesses are dependent on local shoppers. Depending on the products or services you provide many businesses can easily transition to adding online purchasing into the mix.

If done right this can be a great way to tap into this growing market and improve sales and profitability.

Even if you are a serviced based business then ecommerce is also something that you need to consider.

For example, if you are a hairdresser then a great way to use ecommerce would be to have an appointment booking system online, allowing customers to purchase the service and pay through your website.

This would allow you to control the number of customers in your premises at any one time and receive payment prior to the appointment.

We appreciate that you may think, “well they can do this by phone” and that is true. However, as people are getting used to a new way of buying goods and services there is no harm in offering this as an additional way to attract business.

In addition, you could add those ‘extra’ products such as speciality hair items such as hair products and accessories that can be purchased by people that are not just local to you.

Over time you could also increase the number and diversity of products that you offer further making it a great site for shoppers.

Showing how highstreet shops can improve sales by having an e-commerce online shop

What are the costs of changing your website to E-commerce?

If you already have a brochure or shop front website, then many of the costs that you already have such as hosting probably will not increase.

The main cost with changing your website to E-commerce is building the website itself.

Now this can be done using an online builder yourself for free, however it is important to mention that some web building platforms take a commission on a sale.

The other option is to get a web design company in to do this for you.

Obviously, this will cost, although if done right and with the correct marketing strategy it should pay dividends in the long run. Especially with the increase in online sales.

Once up and online the running costs are negligible, it’s a case of allocating someone to run the store and handle the transactions

Conclusion

Common sense would dictate that as uncertainty continues and shopping habits change it may be time to get online with an online shop if you do not already have one.

Generally, they are typically easy to build, low-risk and low-cost to start.

Ecommerce may not be right for every business, or the timing is not right now, but it’s important that you consider an e-commerce-based strategy to keep your business strong for the future.

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Oakham Business Park, Mansfield,
Nottinghamshire NG18 5BR

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