Yes, you should be selling your stuff online.
Should my restaurant/boutique/furniture store/art gallery/fill-in-the-blank sell online? No matter what your business sells, the answer is YES.
We live in an era where someone can buy a car online. If such a large, expensive, and important purchase can be made online you don’t really have an excuse not to offer your product or service - in at least some fashion - online.
Think of your own web browsing and buying habits. We’re so used to being able to buy things with a click or two while we jump from feed to feed, and to share those items with someone who “would just love this.” While WHAT you sell may not compete with Amazon, the WAY you sell it does.
The good news? The software is easy to use and incredibly affordable. Most website platforms now have tools and widgets for online stores, restaurant menus and reservations, salon appointments, event tickets, digital downloads, paid webinars and more. On top of that, most of these will easily integrate with your accounting software (wait, you ARE using accounting software, right?) So you don’t have any headaches there either.
Once you get rolling, you may even find other product opportunities to enhance your bottom line…For example, if you’ve got a great restaurant, especially if you’re a destination, I’ll bet someone would like to have your name on a t-shirt. Merchandise is an easy addition, but there are so many more.
The best reason to get your stuff online? Data. Yup, good old fashioned get-to-know-your-customers kinds of data. When someone buys online, you now have their name, email address and more. And with THAT info, you can (responsibly) keep in touch with them and turn a one time buyer into a long term, loyal fan of your business. As we all know, it's easier and WAY cheaper to keep a customer than to find a new one.
So go forth and sell online. Give us a shout if you have any questions, or to help you get started.
PECO Arts helps small business do business by providing management, marketing and bookkeeping support. Let us know how we can help you succeed.