Having an online business linked to your physical store can turn out to be a profitable endeavor for your business. But when it comes to managing the online side of things, it can prove to be a time-consuming and challenging task.
Luckily, there are many different strategies you can use to make the management of your online business much less of a headache, as well as more efficient and effective for your business in the long run.
Develop a Comprehensive Marketing Strategy
One reason managing an online business can be a chore rests in the fact that so much of marketing related activities can be rather scattered, according to Search Engine Journal. This renders your time and effort marketing online a lot less effective when you have to jump from place to place or aren’t organized in how you plan your advertisements or placement of them.
A strategy to employ to avoid this problem is to develop an overall, comprehensive marketing strategy. Not only does having a plan free up more of your time, it will also make your marketing and promotional efforts far more effective. Use a schedule to do social media once a week, blog posts once a month, or other options in a schedule that makes sense for you, and will get you results.
Social Media and Your Online Business
If you are like many online business owners, you take advantage of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to do your marketing, and you are wise to do so. There are a few downsides to relying on social media outlets though, one of the most negative being time constraints. If you find your time is sucked away with checking stats, updating media sites, and responding to comments, you might need to find an alternative. You can always hire out for these types of jobs, and there are many different online analytical tools that can help you keep track of your sites in one place. Check the third party firms you might hire out and make sure that they stick to white-label SEO services.
Maintain a User-Friendly Website
A website that is not customer or client friendly can make the management of it more challenging and a lot more time consuming. If consumers are not able to easily maneuver your website, find your merchandise, or get around the purchasing process quickly, they will be contacting your for assistance, or even worse, abandoning your site altogether. In the worst case scenario, and this happens a lot when a business has a less than desirable website, potential clients and customers simply will bounce from your site and take their business somewhere else. Loss of business in this manner means lost revenue and actually a knock to the reputation of your business.
This can be avoided by ensuring you have a top notch website developer from the start. You also need to engage someone who is capable to make certain that your business website is functioning at all times. Hiring out is often the best choice, though there are places where you can find DIY website and easy management for smaller storefronts.
Integrate Your Inventory and E-Commerce Platforms
There are numerous shopping cart/e-commerce platforms you might use to accept payments from customers online. These include Amazon, Bigcommerce, eBay, LemonStand, Magento, and Shopify, just to name a few. Make sure that your inventory management solution integrates with the e-commerce platform you choose. This will ensure that whenever you make a sale online, it will be instantly recorded in your inventory records, and you’ll reduce the risk of having outdated inventory quantities and other data errors that could prove costly to untangle.
Making the Leap Online
The idea that an online business owner can do it all is not only incorrect, but can even be dangerous for your business. While it is true that many entrepreneurs have broad skill sets, you probably don’t have the time to take over everything. By employing these tactics, and hiring out when necessary, your online business will be better run and more profitable. Moreover, the management of your online business will be far less a chore. Take the time to fix up and plan out your online business. Your customer’s, pocketbook, and even physical store can benefit when you do.
This post comes from Brooke Chaplan in the US, from the Fishbowl Blog.