It’s 2019 and times have changed, the rules of business are being rewritten thanks to increased competition from new business models, namely shopping online.
Increasingly, browsing the isles of your favourite retail outlet is being replaced by a quick visit to the web from your PC or phone. Within seconds you can have the product purchased, paid for and on its way to your home. Whatever nostalgia there was about the ‘experience’ of shopping is quickly being replaced with the ultra-convenience of Ecommerce.
With an end-to-end system of advertising to digital checkout, digital business have the massive advantage of being able to connect the advertising spend on platforms like Google Adsense, Facebook or similar, to actual sales on their site. This enables the important calculation of the cost of acquisition for new, and existing customers. Once you know that, you really can set a far more accurate budget to achieve the results you desire.
All is not lost for brick and mortar stores, instead those savy businesses will set up their own Ecommerce stores and when done right, could capitalise on the large possible audience. Over time, it is possible to retain a customer and successfully transition them from your physical store to your digital store, but it doesn’t happen automatically.
Problems faced by Business
People cannot afford physical business empires in the way that they used to. For example, a person today cannot afford to have a showroom for a car business, because of the expenses and huge taxes imposed by almost every government around the world.
So what that person faces is loss. As such, their profit margin has been reduced a considerable level. In turn, this makes it harder for potential clients to buy from them, which has resulted in a collapse of the local business market. This situation has come to the attention of the tech world in the last decade or so, and they have helped businesses use loopholes to cash in on this opportunity.
People today are shifting to online working and business. Now, business has the opportunity to leverage social media platforms for free, to introduce and advertise their business. If they choose to accelerate organic growth, they can elect to pull out the credit card and pay for advertising.
For example, a person who has a stock of cars, but does not have the finances to fund a retail showroom, can easily sell and advertise their cars online and can reach millions of people depending on their marketing tactics.
The internet simply offers a more efficient, economical platform to do business. While you may have hosting costs, they’re insignificant compared to the rent, utility and staff costs of a physical store.
If you’re not a web developer, thankfully there’s plenty of online services that will help you develop your own website.
If you plan on selling things (you do), then you’ll need an Ecommerce solution that helps your business list products, handle payments securely and manage customers. Nowadays, many online business owners are migrating from Magento to Shopify Plus in an attempt to roll all of their various online marketing needs into one solution.
The Response of People
In this new era of business, it lowers the barrier to entry, which encourages more small and medium businesses to get started. With lower operational costs, digital metrics, businesses have a far higher chance of making a successful, profitable business.
There are only a few big elephants in the room now.
Firstly, the local market has influence over people, and there has been a number of ‘shop local’ campaigns in an effort to save retail jobs. These campaigns usually attempt to provide a crutch to those who refuse to adapt to changing times and customer demands, so are generally short-sighted. Customers are the big winners and ultimately speak with their dollar, but you have to give them the chance to pay you however they choose, electronically, or over the counter.
To save on costs, home businesses are thriving, saving on the typical office space, distributed employees are the new model, enabled by great connectivity. Because of the lower costs associated with starting a business from your home, your initial startup budget to get your idea up and running and test the market will be dramatically lower.
Another approach online is to outsource work. If you are great at attracting business, perhaps sales, and logistically up to the task of managing multiple projects, you could subcontract the work using online services, tack on some profit and you could be on to a winner.
The same is true with physical products. Many Internet businesses have been made that purchase whitelabelled products from overseas, find creative ways to brand and package it, then sell it for a premium into a new market.
In the past, parents and the vast majority of people used to condemn business and encouraged jobs. But today working for an online business has gathered the same importance as any other field that can be pursued by a new graduate. As such, these digital jobs now have amazing potential to be successful and importantly are available from anywhere to anyone with an internet connection.