Will E-commerce Replace Traditional Stores?
Customers love the convenience of shopping online. However online sales only account for around 7% of retail sales. Customers may go online to get the price and specifications of a particular purchase. However, most people still prefer to make purchases offline, where they can sample goods or services before they buy them. But the opposite is true for a growing number of shoppers. Some people go into a store to see what a product looks like or how it works. Some will do comparison shopping for services. And, many of the tech savvy shoppers will make purchases online when the price or tax situation is more favorable.
Though there are stories of business owners striking it rich online, Many more have become wealthy offline. Because of this, the most successful companies have blended offline shopping with online shopping. Internet giants like Amazon and Google can now be seen starting offline or brick and mortar compliments to their online businesses. And, the most successful businesses offline have started e-commerce compliments to boost their sales. Clearly, the key for either is to find as many methods as possible for customers to spend money with them. And, to find as many ways as possible to enhance their customers experiences with them.
A Bricks and Clicks Business Model is the Solution for All Companies
If the goal of all businesses is to maximize opportunities to earn money, combining both may be the answer. Having an e-commerce website allows a business owner the opportunity to make money 24 hours a day. Small companies would have trouble doing that without incurring huge payroll costs. Which contributes to the 9 out of 10 business failure rate offline. But the success rate online is not much better. E-commerce websites, generally take longer to become profitable. Thus, if a small business were to start its offline business and its online business simultaneously, it could be a winner.
Even offline businesses usually take a while to become profitable. But a wise business person would start both together. Customers from his offline business could be sent to his website, while he waited for it to become known online. When the website began to produce revenue he would have money coming in from both sources, with miner changes in overhead. Compare that to an entrepreneur that decided to start one without the other. A website can be the difference for offline operations. Just as offline operations have been the difference for e-commerce operations.
There’s no downside to selling online
People afraid to start small businesses, would increase their chances for success by adding an e-commerce website to their equation. The Bricks and clicks business model is the wave of the future. Why put half a business together only to find it would have worked better with a website. Online you don’t have to keep inventories of the products you sell. All you have to have is pictures, and you could have your products drop shipped. Drop shippers would send the products to your customers under your name. And, your customers would think it came from you.
An e-commerce website is not a second business, it’s a complement to your offline operation no matter how small it may be. Having an online and an offline component to any company increases the probability you will succeed. And, no matter what type of company you have if it’s related you can sell it online. Landscaping companies can sell gardening supplies. Consulting firms can sell publications. Cosmetologists can sell beauty supplies. And, accounting firms can sell accounting supplies, software and computers. These and many other types of companies can have their products drop shipped or become part of affiliate programs. Add a website to your business and watch your revenue grow.