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Being ready for the digital paradigm

Today, we know that offline and online worlds coexist, and consumers and businesses alike are benefitting from the convergence that this big opportunity presents.

digital paradigm, business online, online business, online store, offline business, brandwagon, in perspective, in perspective with shenaz bapooji, shenaz bapooji
Today, we know that offline and online worlds coexist, and consumers and businesses alike are benefitting from the convergence that this big opportunity presents.
digital paradigm, business online, online business, online store, offline business, brandwagon, in perspective, in perspective with shenaz bapooji, shenaz bapooji
Today, we know that offline and online worlds coexist, and consumers and businesses alike are benefitting from the convergence that this big opportunity presents.

By Shenaz Bapooji

Today, we know that offline and online worlds coexist, and consumers and businesses alike are benefitting from the convergence that this big
opportunity presents. While there are many people taking their businesses online today, their success will truly be dependent on many factors. Here are a few tips for offline businesses going online:

Create an experience, not just an online store: While it is very important to create a great-looking store online that will be attractive to your customers/ stakeholders, you need to ensure that the experience for your customers is equally brilliant! Are your customers able to find you easily — how have you named your webstore? Is the experience as good for them on desktop, as it is on mobile and tablet? Are you giving them easy enough options to pay for your products online? Can they chat with you easily when online?

These appear to be obvious pointers but are often overlooked by many. Make sure you hire an enabler who will aid in your online journey, rather than burden you with stuff you have no clue about. Owners/marketing teams/ key decision-makers need to get equally and passionately involved in the creation of their online presence because it is an extension of what/how they want their brand to be.

Don’t think going online is a destination in itself: Once you have ticked off all the boxes and created a fully working, great-looking webstore, don’t think that magic will happen and customers will discover you automatically! This is just the start of the journey. Use every opportunity to message to people that you have a webstore now. This will require some smart thinking and some smart spending.

Invest in SEO: Investing in search engine optimisation (SEO) is the key as it is what determines whether you will be discovered easily enough when people are searching for you or a product like yours. Identify the most frequently used search words relevant to your business and use them on your site as metatags. These will boost your search engine ranking and help drive traffic to your website.

Leverage social media to the hilt: Make it easy for customers to interact with you and provide a seamless experience by ensuring that your webstore is connected to your social channels. You can also be smart about how you leverage tools like ‘lookalike’ and ‘custom audiences’ to get closer to your audience — beyond just demographic parameters.

Invest in content marketing to drive differentiation and engagement: Keep giving a reason for customers to come back to your site to engage with you. Create frequent blog posts/ messages in any form — text, audio and video — containing most-used keywords and phrases relevant to your business. That way, you will improve your search engine rankings and maximise your conversion rates to ensure your customers not only come back to you but also, recommend you to others.

The author is CMO, Shopmatic Group

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