GLEE | Ending the war on web: 5 ways e-commerce can complement the physical garden centre
In recent years, e-commerce and traditional bricks-and-mortar retail have crossed into one another’s territories, creating a new wave of hybrid shopping. Whether in the form of a website or social media account, in the digital age, it is important for your business to have an online presence. There is, however, flexibility within these retailing formats and you can choose to conduct business in the way that suits your business goals. Even if you’re averse to introducing an e-commerce arm to your business, your potential customers are expecting to see you there, and there are ways to balance both needs. Here are just 5 ways an eCommerce storefront can help you find that balance:
1. Overcome geographical limits
With growing options available in e-commerce, your brick-and-mortar store can overcome geographical limitations and gain new customers through the right online marketing strategy. Having a website, being on social media, or selling on an e-commerce platform allows you to grow your business beyond your physical location. Make sure you clearly display where your physical store is, and how to get there so that new customers are encouraged and able to pay you a visit.
2. Be open 24/7
Having a website allows customers to visit your business 24/7, so when your physical store is shut business is still running! It’s fairly straightforward to integrate an automated order and payment processing function into your online store, which frees our time for other business activities. Neither you nor the customer is restricted by set opening times.
3. The O2O strategy
This stands for “online to offline” and is a strategy designed to bring online customers in-store. You can use your website to promote activities, promotions, and products in-store, and make clear that there is more to see if you come to the physical store. St Peter’s Garden Centre does this very well, clearly displaying the benefits of visiting the physical garden center: more products, activities, and an award-winning restaurant.
4. Quality blogging and SEO
You may be surprised to hear that SEO has the highest ROI of any e-commerce marketing campaign, as very few online stores take this into consideration as they build their website. Adding blogs to your site not only drives organic traffic to your store, but the content can also be used as part of your social media campaign, or even to promote your physical store. A blog also keeps your customers informed about new updates and positions your business as a subject matter expert.
5. Click and Collect
The ‘Click and Collect’ concept has gained much approval from omnichannel retailers. Customers benefit from the convenience of this option, and now with the additional concerns around health and safety, having contactless ways to shop offers customers peace of mind whilst enjoying what local retail locations have to offer. The in-store experience is still a crucial touchpoint here, as ‘Click & Collect’ offers an amazing opportunity for shoppers to browse more and purchase additional items when picking up their online shopping orders.
With thousands of fantastic products on offer, Glee will be taking place from 14 to 16 September 2021 at NEC Birmingham, which is the destination for garden industry inspiration. Compare the latest products on the market and discover the key trends and find out how you can merchandise products within your own retail space.