Despite the dominance of online shopping, consumers are still very much reliant on stores. That doesn’t mean one is better than the other - far from it! Rather, you should be using both of them in tandem, as complements to each other.
Businesses that focus on the online space without neglecting retail are becoming the most successful. This is because not every consumer is ready to abandon the high street yet - are all senior really shopping on Amazon?
No, they aren’t, and millions of customers still want to visit you in person. So give them a reason to! Here are five easy ways to convert online traffic into local sales.
1. Advertise an ‘in-store only’ special offer
Customers love special offers and discounts - whether online, or indeed, local. By placing these offers front and center on all your online pages you’re enticing people in the simplest, most effective way.
And as an added bonus, you may even receive extra sales that are tied to that offer. The offer gets them into the store, but while they’re browsing your stock, they may pick up something else they like too.
2. Optimize your SEO strategy for your product
Don’t focus too much on the name of your business. That’s not what most people will search for. Instead, optimize your SEO strategy to target a specific product. That way, when people search for ‘selfie sticks’ they’ll be hit with local stores that sell selfie sticks.
There are several ways to go about this. Make sure you include these keywords in your site’s meta description, image tags and titles/headers. Social media pages are ranked by search engines too, so make use of that keyword space. Outsourced SEO services could help you here if you’re struggling, so carefully assess how effective your strategy is.
3. Provide directions and opening times
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve not visited a store because I can’t find out what time it opens. What if I get there and it’s shut? It would be annoying, and even though it’s not directly the business’s fault, it would reflect badly on them.
So, at all costs, provide plenty of information! Include directions by train, bus, car and legs. Inform people about the parking situation and even tell them about local toilets. Whack these details on your site, social media and any Google business listings that are related to you.
4. Build a virtual tour
A virtual tour acts as a full-3D, free-to-access digital tour of your business. By outsourcing the creation of one of these, people can look around your store from the comfort of their couch. And, if they like what they see, it can build a desire to visit in person.
5. Offer something the online space can’t
This could literally be a thousand things, so pick a couple. Stores that are just that - stores - aren’t giving the customer reason to turn off the laptop and come on down. The most successful stores have cafes, seating areas, vending machines and even kids play areas. Use the space to your advantage!
This post has been contributed on behalf of prettysinglemom.com