What you need to know about E-Commerce:
Online commerce sales have grown on scale with the World Wide Web for many years now. It has resulted in huge retail giants, such as Amazon, but also millions of smaller online businesses hosted by services like Etsy. In many ways, e-commerce levels the playing field, making it easier to start a retail business compared to launching a brick-and-mortar store. Like any other business model, it has its pros and cons, but launching an online store can be an excellent way to start a business while not having to take a huge financial risk.
So What Is E-Commerce?
Simply put, E-Commerce is the practice of buying and selling things online. Most people have purchased something online at some point and online shopping is only growing. In fact, it has had a huge effect on traditional retail, which has seen a decline in recent years, partly due to the growth of ecommerce. E-commerce has a huge number of benefits, both for business owners, and for consumers. It’s a convenient way to buy and sell, requiring less physical space for businesses and enabling consumers to order whatever they want, straight to their door.
E-Commerce vs. Brick-and-Mortar Retail
When deciding whether to start a retail business, you might weigh up the pros and cons between starting an online store or launching a business with a more traditional model and a physical store or retail space. Each option has its benefits and drawbacks, so it’s worth considering both and how they could work for you. The immediate comparative is the reluctance of a physical space for e-commerce or payroll for people to tend to it, e-commerce has low overhead and often can be created for a fraction of what you would pay in one months rent. E-commerce does lack that physical foot print though where people may just stop in to peruse while they wait for something else or because they are bored at home which will tend to create more revenue through impulse purchasing. Given our current situation with COVID-19 and drastic decline in retail therapy due to public health concerns, opening retail space at this point would still be a far higher risk than e-commerce but that doesn’t mean it will stay like that, but the forecast is gloomy for retail spaces for at least the next few years.
What is the future of E-Commerce?
The COVID pandemic has created unprecedented growth in e-commerce markets which has exponentially increased growth forecasting of the market for 2023, not estimated to total 22% of global purchases. The global pandemic saw national lock-downs and curfews which forced consumers to turn to the internet to resource basic essential items such as food and toilet paper. The increased utilization of these online retailers has forced a streamlining of their logistical chains and increased efficiency thus making the ventures scale larger as the market cap increased. Small businesses that have grown from hobbies into additional income for families due to increased time at home because of COVID now are seeing increased sales which is resulting in increased fees from marketplace hosting platforms. This has created a large market for individuals who want to start their own e-commerce websites that integrate with major online retailers such as Amazon and Walmart. As the world learned during all of the struggles that 2020 presented that transitioning to virtual platforms and conducting virtual office operations actually increased productivity while driving down cost, people around the world also became more comfortable to online shopping and have come to appreciate the convenience more than the in person interaction that they had previously at local retail outlets. The future of e-commerce is growth.
Scaling Your Business
The first thing that you might want to consider is the steps that are involved in scaling your business. The process is going to be different depending on what type of business you decide to launch.
If you want to have a brick-and-mortar store, getting to the point where you have your own retail space can take a while. You might begin by simply selling things to friends and family. After you’ve proven that there is a market for your goods, you could then consider renting a market stall. Once you have outgrown the stall, you might then be ready to start renting a retail space that you can use as a fully developed store.
When starting an online store, things can look a lot different. While it could be friends and family buying your things, to begin with, it’s much easier to reach a wider audience from the very beginning. You can list your products through third-party platforms, such as Amazon or Etsy, launch your own website with an online store, and even use social media to sell your things. Through SEO and other digital marketing techniques, you can immediately start promoting your products.
Of course, even with an online store, it can be necessary to start small. No one is able to launch an internet sensation overnight. New online stores might need to have a smaller range of products or might sell to a smaller market before they start to grow.
One of the major things that online retailers need to consider is where to keep their inventory and how to distribute their orders. Some business owners decide to take care of this themselves, perhaps doing so from home or a self-storage unit on a small scale, then later looking for warehouse space. Others might use a fulfillment service, handing off the storage of their products and the fulfillment of their orders to a third party so that they don’t have to worry about it. There are pros and cons to each of these options, such as more control if you take care of your own fulfillment, but also more to do.
Online businesses are able to sell to just about anywhere. While they have to be careful of any rules for exporting their goods, they could reach customers around the world or even just around the country. Brick-and-mortar businesses, on the other hand, are more limited. Their main customer base will be the local community or visitors to their location. They might also be able to sell further afield, but this would require them to have an additional online store or perhaps all for orders over the phone, or even by mail.
Other differences lie in how brick-and-mortar businesses and online stores interact with and connect to their customers, as well as how they carry out their marketing. Marketing an online store can be carried out completely online. Brick-and-mortar stores might want to consider other options, such as flyering or direct mail.
Ascend SEO Marketing has unique and extensive experience rooted in traditional retail operations and planning and has transitioned that to innovative e-commerce design and hosting. Give us a call today to learn how we will take your business to the next level!
Our e-commerce packages are industry leading, priced and stocked to not only be competetive but provide top tier advantages for our clients. Our clients scaling is the ultimate goal of Ascend SEO Marketing and the first step in that transition is our e-commerce packages combined with our industry leading SEO strategy and implementation. Contact us to learn more!
Why Choose e-Commerce?
Is e-commerce the better choice? Why should you choose it over opening a brick-and-mortar store? The truth is that starting an online business is going to be more attainable for most people. It’s much easier to set up a store online, even when you need to source products and work out how to fulfill your orders, compared to opening a physical store. You can do it more quickly and with less money. In fact, using drop shipping, you don’t even need to buy any stock before you set up your store. You could get started on a very small budget if you wanted to. Reaching new markets and larger pools of customers is far easier and cheaper with use of effective digital marketing techniques. By harnessing SEO with focused direct search SEM strategy and organic local branding an e-commerce store could outpace the growth of a brick-and-mortar location for the fraction of the price spent on rent and utilities.
Of course, that’s not to say that just anyone could launch and grow a successful online store. It still takes work to turn an online store into an e-commerce success. Before starting, it’s important to have a business plan. Although you can get started on a small budget, it’s still important to have the time and money to invest in promoting your store. e-commerce can be a better choice if you’re trying to save money or you want to get your business going faster. However, it’s not an instant path to success.
Some businesses also combine brick-and-mortar stores with online retail. They might start with a physical store and move online too, or they might have success online and decide to open a brick-and-mortar store afterward. Both options could work out if you’ve already shown success through one sales channel.
How Ascend SEO Marketing can help
We offer reliable and affordable e-Commerce models that reduce your risk, grow with you as you scale, and are frankly oozing with SEO goodness that would make Amazon and Macy’s jealous. By hiring the best Small Business SEO Agency you can take your crafts from the garage to full production, we will match the quality of your products with new markets and customer conversions that you just won’t get with other e-Commerce vendors and hosts.
Our SEO packages are designed to get you to the front page of Google through optimizing your Google My Business and Bing Business Places. Give Atlanta’s small business SEO experts a call today and see where we can help you ascend. All of our websites are optimized for desktop, tablet, and most importantly in 2021 mobile. Google’s John Mueller said that Google’s Mobile First Index will exclude all desktop content that does not translate to mobile. Ascend SEO Marketing web designers are experts at transitioning designs that offer continuity to branding and indexing value so that our clients remain on the cutting edge of search engine optimization and on the front page of search engines like Google and Bing.
Contact us today to find out how our Small Business Websites and SEO Packages can take your business to the next level and ascend over your competition.