It’s no news that we live in a very tech-driven world today. It’s the birth of the internet age after all and there is no slowing down by any indication. With a larger number of people gradually becoming more internet and social media-savvy and having more readily available online apps selling various products and services coupled with the desire to carry out these services with a progressive level of ease, it will be a great disservice to your business to miss out on the number of potential customers and business leads that the online world presents daily at very little or no costs. So here’s why you must absolutely sell your products and services online:
The wide reach that the online world presents for businesses today is enormous. Over 3 billion people worldwide are daily accessing vast online content primarily from their mobile phones and other computing devices. From these remote devices and in any part of the world, customers and potential customers can easily access your products and services, make purchases and have their items or services delivered all from your online platform. It is interesting to note that social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook have over 300 million active users and 1.09 billion active users respectively every day with a 57% average engagement rate from its users. A whopping 989 million users are active from their mobile phones! Most businesses are present on social media today helping them maintain closer interactions with their customers and amongst their customers. A new branch of e-commerce, social commerce is helping businesses leverage on these massive social media interactions and accounts to market their service and products and convert their visitors to actual customers.
In addition to being available to a wider range of potential clients around the globe, you have no closing hours as against your traditional physical stores.
In other words, customers are constantly coming in. Being available round the clock not only increases sales as buyers shop more frequently, but they also have the luxury of being able to place orders for your products or services to meet urgent needs or deadlines. It’s a win win situation each time.
Starting an online business is becoming a lot less expensive by the day. Today, platforms like Zoafia bring together manufacturers and vendors with delivery companies, digital marketing companies under one umbrella providing them with a very unique platform to sell their products and services to their target customers while keeping their focus on building and promoting their business brands. As a business owner with products/services to sell, you have a fully integrated e-commerce platform that incorporates all aspects of an online business including how to receive payments, in-depth analytics on your customer visits and conversion rates for individual products all hassle free. While indigenous marketplace platforms offer business owners these sites free of charge, some others charge a monthly or annual premium. In the long run, you are tasked with actually building your brand, advertising and ensuring availability of your products .
It is also a lot easier to maintain an accurate inventory of your products online and categorize product groups into sub units that enable customers navigate your entire store quite easily and shop with ease. You can also upload as many products as you have available without your site looking stuffy and choked up with a lot of goods as it would if I walked into it. A customer who has had a seamless shopping experience on your platform and finds it easy to use will most likely recommend your product/service to a friend or family. He/she is also more likely to pay your online store a return visit.
With the aid of social media platforms, it is also increasingly easy to share information with a wider number of customers within a short time-frame especially when you have new stock, promotions or major discounts on-going, at little or no cost. They are in turn able to share the information with their individual social networks who usually have the same interests boosting your reach at absolutely no cost! Talk about free advertising. Your customers are also able to easily share feedback about your products and services and make recommendations that have ripple effects. In a place like Nigeria, word of mouth advertising especially for online stores is very important. A happy and satisfied customer is very likely going to leave comments on your businesses’s social media accounts and share their experiences with others on social media as they would if their experience is bad. Hence communication is very fast, more effective and can be used to generate more sales, attract new customers and keep your existing ones.
I believe the benefits of an online store are endless. There could be a lot of technicality and specialty involved in starting and running one but even all of that are readily available these days. So if you are a business owner still restricted to your physical store and walk-in customers and your 8am — 5pm opening hours, you must consider an online store. In this time and age, it is imperative that your business is present online and that your customers have access to your products and services at the palm of their hands any time any day. Trust me, in the long run; you are the one smiling to the bank while closing your books for the month.