Like anything new, there will always be a learning curve. Transitioning from brick and mortar to e-commerce is no different. There are a lot of new challenges businesses are facing such as website setup, maintenance, content creation, photography, analytics data, etc. While COVID may eventually go away, e-commerce won’t. Shopping behaviors have adapted to the convenience and ease of online shopping. These behaviors will likely continue even after all the bans are lifted. Despite the challenges, there are many benefits to online storefronts.
- Social commerce – A lot of e-commerce platforms have the ability to connect to your social media pages. This allows you to expand your reach and turn your posts into shopping experiences.
- Mobile-friendly – Most of the online shopping platforms are now mobile-friendly which allows for easier transactions and shorter conversion times.
- Location – With e-commerce, you don’t have to wait for people to walk through your doors during operating hours. You can now sell anywhere at any time.
- Overhead – Outside of any initial set-up costs and fees, you can save money on overhead costs like rent and utilities.
The good news is there are a lot of e-commerce platforms available. Each platform has its own benefits and pitfalls. Some of the most popular sites are Shopify, SquareSpace, Wix, and WooCommerce. At Firefly Marketing, our developers have preferred to work with WooCommerce and Shopify. Here’s their own list of the pros and cons of each of the two platforms:
Whichever platform you choose, keep in mind what is going to work best for your business and what will work best for your ideal customer. If all of your customers like to shop on Facebook, then Shopify might be the better option for you. If your audience likes a more in depth experience with your business, then further customization with WooCommerce might be the way to go.
2020 has not been a particularly easy year for business which is why Louisiana Economic Development (LED) has partnered with Shopify to help small businesses transition into e-commerce. They are providing tips to improve existing e-commerce sites as well as easy guides to set up a completely new website. Additionally, every week Shopify will host webinars to continue to help businesses adapt to an online marketplace.