Have you considered transitioning your brick-and-mortar business to the digital space? With the ongoing health crisis discouraging in-store visits, now is the time to offer your products online.

Taking your store online can help you boost sales and avoid the numerous challenges facing brick-and-mortar businesses currently. More customers can access your products from the comfort of their couch. They don’t need to leave their homes or violate quarantine and social distancing. Moving your store online is the most viable option to survive and even strive in this trying time. Fortunately, transitioning from brick-and-mortar to the digital space it’s easier than you think.

Transitioning your Business to an Online Store

An online store is simply a website that connects your business with the customers. As a small business, visibility is essential for your online store to stand out from the crowd. You’ll need an optimized e-commerce website to transition your brick-and-mortar business to an online store. You can take your business online the long way or the shorter route.

Taking your brick-and-mortar business online the long way

Don’t worry; taking a long way is easy. But, you will need some technical expertise to build a functional and optimized website for your e-commerce store. You will also need a domain name and a web host for your store. You can follow these steps to take your business online the long way:

Step 1: Choosing a domain name for your online store

The first ingredient to enhance visibility online is an optimized domain. Your domain should be catchy, easy to remember, and capture the uniqueness or value proposition of your brand perfectly. With around 2 billion websites online, constructing a unique domain around the name of your business can be challenging. It is easier to buy domains online.

Step 2: Design your e-commerce website

The most important elements during the e-commerce website design include optimized pages, layout, navigation, and aesthetics. Your website should include a homepage, about page, product pages, checkout page, and thank you page. Each page should be optimized with a user-friendly layout and navigation to help customers take the next step and complete their purchase. You can also include buyer reviews feature and a blog section for marketing your online store. An optimized website with a blog section full of SEO-friendly content can increase your online sales significantly.

Step 3: Integrate payment solutions and management tools

You can sell without a payment solution, right? Most online shoppers purchase with credit cards. So, you must integrate payment processors that allow customers to pay using their credit cards. Your website should also support payment options like PayPal, eChecks, and so on. You will need tools to streamline marketing, manage inventory and shipping, and engage your customers.

Step 4: Get Web Hosting

Some website hosting platforms allow you to register your domain name as part of your web hosting application process. Web hosting companies for small online stores are cheap. Ensure to choose a hosting platform that is optimized for search engines like Google and Bing.

With your website hosted successfully, the transition of your brick-and-mortar to the digital space will be complete. You will have to undertake online and social media marketing to attract first-time buyers.

The shorter route to expand your brick-and-mortar business online

There are numerous solutions you can use to build your e-commerce website and set up your store within a short period. Using plug-n-play e-commerce solutions to migrate brick-and-mortar online can cut your transition time significantly. You don’t need to design a website since the platform offers ready-to-use web pages and templates with in-built management tools and payment solutions.

Popular plug-n-play solutions include Shopify, Amazon, WooCommerce, and BigCommerce. They provide everything you need for efficient operations. For instance, Shopify comes with payment solutions and tools for marketing, shipping, inventory management, and customer engagement. The disadvantages of using plug-n-play e-commerce platforms include SEO limitations and lack of uniqueness. It is difficult to stand out from the crowd if you’re all using closely similar website design.

 


 

Transitioning to the digital space can help you overcome the challenges facing brick and mortar businesses globally. You can take your business online using the long web design approach or hire an expert in website design to help you out. The plug-n-play solutions of the short route to the digital space. Regardless of your approach, expanding your small business online is easy.