As a consequence of the coronavirus outbreak, many small businesses are operating behind closed doors and struggling as they try e-commerce for the first time.
Start selling online right now can seem daunting. These tips will help you make sense of the process so your business stays in motion even under unprecedented circumstances.
Review Your Website and Start Selling Online
Your website will be very important over the next weeks. People will use the internet to look up your business and make sure that you are still operating. Post an announcement placed prominently on your website to let your potential customers know that you are aware of the situation and transitioning to e-commerce. Communication is key during a crisis, so make sure to be compassionate and clear, and don’t forget to include a link to your shopping page if you have one already.
Set up an E-Commerce platform
The second step is setting up an e-commerce platform if you don’t have one yet. There are many options available, and you may want to seek guidance from an expert before making your choice. As you weigh the different alternatives, make sure to consider the following:
- How many products do you plan to sell? This may impact the rate you pay. Usually less items to sell translate into a simpler, less expensive plan.
- What features are necessary? Decide whether basic features are enough for you, or if you need more complex options, such as a loyalty program.
- Are transactions secure? It’s essential that the provider you choose is compliant with Payment Card Industry (PCI) standards if you are accepting credit card payments.
Craft a Marketing Strategy
Determine the mix of marketing channels you will use to promote your business. E-mail and social media are attractive, relatively inexpensive options. When it comes to return on investment (ROI) email marketing is almost unbeatable, while social media has unparalleled potential to convey a message at a time when your customers are not able to leave their homes.
Reach Out to Your Local Community
The coronavirus outbreak is strengthening bonds in communities all around the world. People understand that helping each other is the only way to overcome a difficult situation. Look for local partnerships to promote your products or services and don’t forget to stay connected to your most loyal customers
At the Greater Riverside Hispanic Chamber of Commerce we are committed to supporting small businesses and economic development by providing access, advocacy, business referrals, marketing opportunities, training programs, student internships and scholarships.