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From Brick-and-Mortar to Online: Creating Your eCommerce Strategy

Updated: Aug 17, 2023

From Brick-and-Mortar to Creating Your eCommerce Strategy

No doubt, the pandemic proved that eCommerce is a way to open new revenue streams. If you’re considering adding eCommerce to your business strategy or expanding your online presence, this blog is for you. We’ll explore the steps you can take to maximize your chances for online growth and success.

Creating a Strong Online Presence

When developing an eCommerce strategy, it’s essential to have a strong digital or online presence. This includes your website, social media platforms, or anywhere else that you can be found online. Consumers can find your website organically (i.e. searching using keywords or by referrals) or through advertising (paid or unpaid). To make it easier to find your company, your website should be Search Engine Optimized (SEO). This helps improve your online visibility. However, consumers find you, when they do, your website needs to clearly represent your company, the products and services you offer, and be user-friendly. More specifically, when visitors come to your website, they should know exactly what you offer, be able to find what they are looking for, and be able to purchase easily.

For social media, your pages should be set up as business, not personal, pages. Social media is a great way to increase brand awareness, tell others about your products and services, or build a community of followers. Therefore, the content you post should always be related or tied back to your company, brand, or products and services. While it may be tempting to post your night out on the town with friends, save that for your personal page. While it’s not recommended that you post personal content on your business page, you can always post your business content on your personal page to let your followers know the exciting things that are happening in your business.

Finally, solicit on-line reviews and testimonials from your customers. Nowadays, it can be hard to decipher who online is real and who is not. So, reviews and testimonials help you build trust, establish credibility, and provide social proof that you are legitimate.

Inventory Management and Logistics

I’ve often heard business owners say that managing both in-store and online inventory can be a challenge. Therefore, you will want to make sure that you have an inventory management system that integrates point of sale purchases with eCommerce sales. This will ensure that when you make sales online (including website, landing pages, and social media shops), it’s automatically synced with your in-store inventory; and vice versa. There’s nothing like making a sale and when you go to fulfill the order, you discover that you’re sold out.

In addition, you will want to establish a process for fulfillment and logistics. Determine who in your company will be responsible for receiving, fulfilling, and shipping online orders. Make sure that you’ve partnered with a reliable shipping company so you can avoid shipping delays, create satisfied customers, and improve your chances for repeat orders or referrals.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

In short, SEO increases the probability that you will be found online when someone is searching for companies that offer the products or service that you do. When consumers use search engines such as Google, Bing, or Yahoo, they type in words, or keywords, to find what they are looking for. You increase your chances of coming up in search results if your website is optimized to include these keywords. But there’s more to SEO than that; more than we have time to cover in this blog. However, some easy things that you can do to boost your SEO include:

  • Having a quick site speed (how quickly your website pages come up when clicked)

  • Ensuring that your website doesn’t have any broken links (links that don’t work)

  • Using meta descriptions, meta tags, and title tags

  • Ensuring that you use your settings to name each image on your website

  • Adding links to other pages or sections of your website

  • Getting backlinks from other websites

  • And much more

SEO is an ongoing exercise. Keywords are ever changing, and search engines like to see fresh content regularly so having a blog, updating photos, or even adding upcoming events to your website will help.

Enhance Customer Experience and Support (Approximately 100 words):

Delivering exceptional customer experience is crucial for ecommerce success. Offer multiple communication channels, such as live chat or email, for prompt customer support. Ensure your website is mobile-friendly and easy to navigate. Personalize the shopping experience by recommending related products or providing tailored offers. Streamline the checkout process to minimize cart abandonment.

Online Marketing

You can try to avoid it, but eventually, in order for you to drive traffic and boost sales, you will have to invest in some type of online marketing. You can develop a strategy that includes pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, social media advertising, or email marketing to reach your target audience. Long-form content such as blogs and podcasts can also engage potential customers and attract them to your website. You can also look into collaborations with influencers or affiliate marketing programs. Remember not to just jump into paid marketing. Do your research first. This will allow you to have more understanding of what each type of online marketing can bring and use the appropriate paid marketing that will help you meet your business goals.

Engaging in eCommerce can add value to your business, but to be successful, you will need a strategy. Having systems and processes will help. Be sure to develop a way to be found online and have a plan on how you will manage inventory, fulfill orders, and have them shipped. Use SEO to supercharge your website. Use paid marketing wisely; identify what works best for your company. Above all, ensure that customers have a user-friendly, satisfying experience.

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