5 benefits of ecommerce for local retail and how to leverage online sales in 2023 to thrive in a recession

Written by Damion Hazael

Posted on: Thursday, Dec 15

As the world continues to shift towards a potential downturn in 2023, eCommerce is becoming an increasingly important part of the business landscape. For local retail shops, this presents both a challenge and an opportunity. On the one hand, competition in the market is fierce, with businesses of all sizes looking to create engaging and user-friendly online shopping experiences. On the other hand, there are still many benefits to maintaining a physical shopfront, and eCommerce doesn’t have to be a threat. In fact, by embracing eCommerce and incorporating it into their business model, local retail shops can not only survive but thrive.

Here are 5 benefits of eCommerce for local retail shops:

  1. Increased reach and exposure. By setting up an online store, local retail stores can extend their reach beyond their physical location, allowing them to sell to customers all over the world. This can be particularly useful for shops that specialise in unique or hard-to-find products.
  2. 24/7 availability. With an online store, local retail businesses can be open for business 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This makes it convenient for customers to shop at their own leisure and can help companies to increase sales and revenue.
  3. Improved customer experience. An online store can provide a more convenient and enjoyable shopping experience for customers. They can browse products and make purchases from the comfort of their own home, without having to deal with crowds or limited shopping hours.
  4. Increased flexibility and control. By managing their own online store, local retail stores can have more control over their pricing, inventory, and marketing efforts. This can help businesses better respond to customer demand and compete in the marketplace.
  5. Enhanced competition with larger retailers. Many consumers are willing to shop online from small, independent retailers, and eCommerce provides local businesses with a level playing field to compete with larger, more established retailers. By offering unique products and a personal touch, local shops can differentiate themselves and win over customers.

In order to be successful in 2023 and beyond with eCommerce, local retailers will also need to incorporate effective marketing strategies into their business plan. Some potential marketing requirements for small online shops looking to compete online include:

  1. A well-designed and user-friendly website. The online store should be easy to navigate, with clear product descriptions and high-quality images. It should also be optimised for mobile, as many customers prefer to shop on their mobile phones and tablets.
  2. A strong online presence. Small business retailers will need to have a strong presence on social media and other online platforms in order to reach and engage with their target audience. This can include regular posts and updates on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as well as customer engagement through comments and messages.
  3. An email marketing campaign. Email marketing can be a powerful tool for local retail stores looking to sell online. By collecting customer email addresses and sending out regular newsletters or promotional emails, businesses can keep customers informed about new products and special offers, and encourage repeat purchases.
  4. Search engine optimisation (SEO). In order for customers to find their online shop, local retail stores will need to optimise their websites for search engines using search engine optimisation. This can include keyword research, meta descriptions, and other techniques to improve the website’s ranking on search engine results pages.
  5. Advertising and paid promotions. Local retail stores may also want to consider advertising and paid promotions in order to reach a wider audience and drive traffic to their online store. This could include paid ads on social media, search engine advertising, or sponsored posts on relevant websites or blogs.

By implementing these marketing requirements and leveraging the benefits of eCommerce, local retail stores can successfully compete in 2023 and continue to thrive. While the digital landscape can seem intimidating, with the right strategies and support, local retail stores can adapt and grow, providing customers with a convenient and enjoyable online and in-store shopping experience.

So what are the benefits of online shopping for retailers in 2023?

  1. Increased reach: Online shopping allows retailers to reach a wider audience than they would be able to through a brick-and-mortar store alone. This means that retailers can sell their products to customers in different parts of the country or even around the world.
  2. Lower overhead costs: Operating an online store typically involves lower overhead costs than running a physical store. This is because retailers do not need to worry about the costs associated with maintaining a physical storefront, such as rent, utilities, and property taxes.
  3. Convenience for customers: Online shopping is convenient for customers because they can shop from the comfort of their own home, at any time of day or night. This means that customers can shop on their own schedule, without needing to worry about the shops opening hours or location.
  4. Easy to compare prices and products: Online shopping makes it easy for customers to compare prices and products from different retailers, which can help them make informed purchasing decisions. This can be especially useful for customers who are looking for the best deal on a particular item.
  5. Ability to offer personalised experiences: Online retailers can use customer data and other information to create personalised shopping experiences for their customers. This can include recommending products based on a customer’s purchase history, providing customised pricing based on a customer’s location, and more.

If you would like to discuss how to get started setting up an online store for your business, you can contact damion@digitalstorm.co.uk or call on 01202 298392

Written by Damion Hazael

Posted on: Thursday, Dec 15