7 Stages of Offline to Online Business Success

Offline Business is increasingly depressed because changes in spending trends are turning to the online world. Digital transactions make it very easier for consumers to get the desired item without having to bother leaving the house. Just at a tap on their cell phone, consumers can find a wide range of options, be it clothing, food or even shelter, without the need to visit shops at far enough distance that will take up time, energy and also transportation cost.

With this significant change in people’s consumption patterns, businesses need to find solutions to deal with it. One way that can be taken is by moving from an offline business to online. This effort inevitably has to be taken so that the business is not left behind. 

In an effort to move an offline business to online there are several stages that must be followed in order to run optimally.

Stage 1 : Do Market Research

Your business may already have customers in the online world and may only need to switch to an online store. But it is not that simple as it sounds, it is totally different situation when you make sales in the offline world in-comparison to the online world . There are procedures and steps to be followed to make these customers know that your business exists in the online world. Therefore it is necessary to do due diligence before entering the online world.

The market base in the online world is also much broader when compared to offline. You certainly want to develop a large-scale business using this. Before you begin, you need to know what choices are best for your business and demographic. Do market research and surveys to find out how far your business can be developed, who can be your potential customers, what exactly they want from your local business and what services you can provide. This research can begin by asking existing customers or visitors to your store. Can be added by making surveys online to get more data. You can offer a reward so that they are interested in filling out your survey.

Build a Website

To build a holistic online presence, a website for your business is literally inevitable. A website works as your online visiting card and should be used to give complete information about your products and services. Take your time to develop a quality website, or you can pay someone else who is an expert in web development. Start by choosing the right domain name depicting your business and an user-friendly platform which is use to handle for you as well. The website that you develop doesn’t have to be complex. Choose a design that is simple but looks attractive so that customers feel at home while they are on your website. Keep updating Complete information about your products and services from time to time. Place the information neatly and avoid writing errors. And make sure all links function properly. Give your best because the website is the face of your business.

Take Advantage of Social Media

While turning to the online world, start with something simple. Social media presence is literally free as creating accounts and posting on the social accounts does not incur any cost.  Take advantage of social media to promote products and services while marketing it. Building a marketing unit on social media is indeed quite effective. This is because social media can be used by anyone, anytime and anywhere. At present almost all levels of society have social media accounts, be it Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, linkedin and so on. As per a survey. People spend an average of 3 hours 26 minutes each day accessing social media for any purpose. Use this to reach your target market by posting and promoting through platforms that they open daily. Social media is well suited to be the initial promotional media because it comes at a fairly low cost. Even if you have enough time, promotion using social media can be done without a penny. But for those of you with limited time or are chasing targets, hiring someone for this part can also be done.

Also Read: Benefits of Turning Your Offline Store to Online Store

Create an Online Consumer Base

Once your business has a functioning social media account and website, then you need to build a potential audience. You can use social media to promote your website and vice versa. Provide a link to the website on social media to generate traffic on your website. But one thing to avoid, even if you want your brand to be everywhere, try to optimize just one or two platforms. This usually applies to social media usage. You don’t need to promote on every platform existing on social media. Choose social media that is your customer base and that is best suited for your type of business. Interact and engage as much as possible so that you are closer to the prospective customer.

Take advantage of E-mail Newsletters

After launching a website  for business, you can start collecting email addresses and prospective customer information. Maximize the opt-in function on your website to help this process. Opt-in is a method used to add prospective customers by asking them to register with name & e-mail . The emails of these potential customers will later enter the email marketing list which can be integrated with email marketing tools like mailchimp, zoho campaigns, constant contact etc. Most of these websites allow you to send emails to upto 2000 emails free. With this method, the promo material that you create will arrive at the right person. Give special promotions, discounts, and free products to attract potential customers to register their e-mail for your newsletter. The more e-mails you have, the more customers you can reach with various special offers and information of your business.

Use an SEO Service Provider

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a marketing method that affects the level of visibility of a website in a search engine. SEO will help your website to be at the top of the list when customers search for keywords related to the content of your website . Try to use SEO services that are able to provide quality services. Always ask for proof of work from the vendor which creates a sense of worthiness for the SEO expert. SEO service providers will usually provide technical advice on developing your website, developing content, campaign management for business development, keyword research used on content and so on.

Prepare Yourself for Facing Consumers

With online activities that are very crowded at almost all times, you need to prepare yourself to deal with it very effectively. You can receive a large list of orders at the beginning. Provide the best service possible to be able to answer every customer request. Stay in s=touch with your customers by making statements or confirmations through websites and social media. Likewise if an online business that is run is not very successful at first. You have to really be able to play the promotion and marketing strategies to invite many potential customers in the future.

The stages mentioned above are still the first steps of moving business from offline to online. After entering the online world, there are still stages that must be done to keep your business going . One of them is maintaining stability and good management. To keep you focused on developing your business, help is needed to do technical things like financial records and managing your human resources etc.

Also Read: The Role of SEO for SMES and Startup