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Transitioning to Digital: Steps to Make Your Online Debut

November 9, 2017 No Comments

Featured article by Calvin Paige, Independent Technology Author

The potential of the Internet is limitless, and it’s changing every day. If your small business isn’t already online, it should be. Not only can having an online presence increase your sales, but it could also increase your reputation and credibility. Today, consumers need to trust a store before they buy from it, especially if it’s online and they can’t see the physical object for themselves. To make the transition to digital, however, you need to do it right.

1. Create Your Website

When you want to create an online store, it’s best to have the most control over how it looks and operates as possible. Sure, you can use secondary marketplaces like Amazon or Etsy, but having your own website gives you more control and profit. When you build your website, put effort into making it both look great, and work well. You should also consider the SEO possibilities when it comes to building your website, as the better your SEO, the more likely others will find you.

2. Create Your Branding

If you don’t already have a logo for your store, create them here. You need this logo and associated branding to create a unified online presence. You don’t want to have one look on your website, and then change the branding entirely on your social profiles. No, you want the look, theme, and voice you use to be uniform throughout. That way, you will reaffirm who you are and what you well on all platforms, which brings us to the next step:

3. Create Your Social Profiles

Every store should have social media. This isn’t necessarily to make you go viral, but to give people a place where they can contact you. Billions of people around the world use social media to communicate, and missing out on an avenue of communication is a big mistake. Not only can they communicate with you, but they can also review you and validate your store. People trust reviews, and so you need to work on your customer service to ensure that the reviews you get are good. When they aren’t good, that’s okay, all you need to do is respond to them openly and genuinely. How you deal with negative reviews and customer complaints is just another means to advertise to new customers.

4. Know Your Demographic

Your digital demographic will be different than those in your neighborhood. Your online demographic won’t be able to try on your clothes, so you need to cater to their needs. For example, provide clear measurements and sizing; allow them to return the items for free if they do not fit or look right. Your online audience is your largest demographic, so you need to market to them effectively.

5. Market Effectively

Once you have your demographic, you can market more effectively. Using marketing tools from Internet giants like Facebook or Google, you can target your ads directly to the people most likely to buy from you.

Transitioning to the digital with your business requires just as much planning as it took to open your store. The more detailed and prepared you are, the more successful your online store will be.

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