Nowadays, almost every business has its own website. This isn’t all too surprising. After all, we do live in an era where most of us spend the majority of our times looking at screens. Whether that’s at work, on our phones, or on laptops or tablets at home. But would taking to e-commerce be the best decision for your business? Or would it be a waste of time and money? Here are a few ways that will help you to decide whether to test the waters of online selling.
If e-commerce is well suited to your business, there are seemingly endless benefits. First off, setting up online gives your brand worldwide reach. Anyone with an internet connection, regardless of the part of the world or timezone they are living in, will be able to access your products. If you offer international shipping, you could see your goods making their way far and wide across the globe in no time. You never know, a country you’ve never visited before could prove to be your best marketplace. Secondly, access to your products exceeds standard store opening hours. Your website will always be online. This means people can purchase from you and make inquiries via email twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. This holds the potential to massively increase your profits, as people in this day and age tend to buy on impulse. If you leave them to mull over their choices for too long, they are likely to leave products that would have been snapped up in an instant if they had the opportunity at the right time.
When it comes to setting up online, you are taking a significantly smaller risk than setting up an extra store in real life. Opening a tangible, physical store means committing to contracts, bills, employing staff members and investing a whole lot more money than setting up a website. The outlay on creating a web page is relatively non-committal. The staff you bring in will mainly be freelance. This means web designers can be hired to create pay monthly websites. If things don’t work out as planned, you can simply stop and end the working relationship without being tied up into a contract.
For every pro, however, there is bound to be a con somewhere along the way. When customers choose to buy with you online, you have a serious obligation to ensure that their details are kept private and secure. This means ensuring that all payment methods that you offer are secure and trustworthy. This can be easily done, but online identity theft and card detail theft is an extra hazard that you will have to worry about.
If things don’t work out, you are liable to lose the money that you put into building a site and purchasing a domain name. However, this isn’t generally a large amount of money, so most people will think that it is worth the gamble.
To settle on whether to set up online or not, you could conduct market research. This will effectively show whether your customer base spends much time online and how likely they are to make online purchases or inquiries.