The benefits of WooCommerce for retail stores is a pretty long list. Think about the possibilities as people go online more and more. Most consumers are buying online more than they are in person. It is safe, fast, and convenient and with people being busier than ever, they are taking to the convenience. WooCommerce is a platform that is designed to handle the shopping experience of your clients. It is a full shopping cart that will take payments and allow your clients the complete online experience. There are various plugins that can enhance their experience as well as allow you to gather information about your visitors.
WooCommerce is built on WordPress, which is the most common platform for website designs. It is easily built on and you actually own your website and literally sell whatever you’d like without any risk of someone taking it down. There are many platforms out there. But, some will censor your products as well as pricing. Shopify for example is a very large e-commerce platform but they don’t allow certain things to be sold and can freeze your website and assets because of this.
Shopping Carts & E-Commerce
E-Commerce is a little different than having your website up for informational purposes. You will need a shopping cart system as well as a system that handles all the orders and helps you with shipping. There are more components that go into this sort of site design and certainly more thought. You will need to think about:
- How to list categories
- What the categories will be?
- Cross-post in other categories?
- Payment process
- Shopping cart button colors and how it appears
There are so many things to think about and organize before you ever even start to build a website. Take your time and really organize the shop how you think is best. Sometimes, it might take a piece of paper and a pen to draw out a map of what the categories and subcategories will look like. This is the first step to having a successful website design. Remember, people don’t want to click down into several categories before finding what they are looking for. Try to keep the click downs to a minimum.
Think as if you were a client entering your store. What categories would you find necessary and important? This process may take a few days, but it is worth it. This is an important step that should not be taken lightly. It is too difficult to change later, especially if you have a lot of products.
Woocommerce Is Easy To Set Up
While you might think getting all your products online while you run your business seems like an incredibly daunting task. It is not. Setting up an ecommerce store is easy. In fact, you will simply need to make a spreadsheet of your products, which you might have already if this is how you do inventory. Each product will need a description. This description is selling your product to your potential clients. You will also need a SKU number or part number so that you know and the system knows what the product is.
There are even some systems that will work with your retail store and online store to keep track of all inventory. Things have gotten pretty advanced. So, if you have a pet store, for example, and have a certain kind of dog food at a certain size on the shelf. You can go to your inventory and see exactly how much you have. It will go out of stock on your website as soon as someone purchases it in your store. This stops you from overselling and causing an inventory nightmare.
Professional E-Commerce Websites
The benefits of a WooCommerce platform can be enhanced in a variety of manners. In fact, you probably have been on a WooCommerce website and not even known it. Sure, there are some pretty badly made websites out there. But, when done correctly, it can look amazing and professional. Be sure that you have the pages about us, privacy policies, and terms and conditions. Everyone is making e-commerce websites, so it is important that you have yours built in a manner that is easy to navigate with great product images.
Take your time to get the product images just right. You should never use other people’s images unless it is direct from the manufacturer. Taking your images in good lighting is important. You should use software to take out the background of the image or put in a white or professional looking background. The images should be clear and easy to see what it is that you are offering.
Some e-commerce products don’t sell as well using SEO. For example, rings and other jewelry for women is something that certainly is popular. However, many people don’t go searching for women’s rings but see them on their social media and have to have them. This is why you shouldn’t simply rely on one form of advertising. You need to ask yourself where your clients are lurking.
Marketing Your WooCommerce Store
Pinterest and Instagram are great platforms to market on. They are all about imagery and showing off your products in a manner that makes someone want to buy them. You can do paid advertising on these platforms or build up your own following. By building a following you will have people that you can directly market to. Be sure that you have an area on your website that gathers people’s emails so that you can run an effective email marketing campaign.
There are also pixels that you can put on your website from Facebook and Google that will allow your website to gather data about your visitors. These are handy if you plan to run retargeting ads at any given time. While you are in the building process it is just good practice to add these to your website.
You also need to ensure that you have all the proper technical data added to the site. Things such as schema and a sitemap are great for SEO (Search Engine Optimization). You want to have a good layout for your visitors but you also want a good layout for the search engines. There is simply no reason to build a website if nobody can find it!
Create An Additional Income Stream
Woocommerce for retail stores is an additional way for your physical store to make additional income. Think of it as an extension of the store that you already have. There may be a need down the line to hire additional staff to fulfill the orders and ship the products. However, the additional income of the online store will certainly cover its needs. The other added benefit to having a Woocommerce store is that it never closes. You don’t need to man it all the time. There is no need for people to be standing around, waiting for people to enter the store.
In fact, some retail store owners find that they love being online and don’t really want a retail store location and the headache. That’s okay too. Online is a great way to market to not only the locals but to the entire world or even just your country. A Woocommerce retail store is exciting and can be a solid form of income if done properly.
There are other retail store owners that have more than one Woocommerce retail store. You can simply run them from your home and have the inventory in a spare bedroom. Others are using the drop-shipping model and purchasing merchandise from another store after they make a purchase. There are many retail models that can be set up using a Woocommerce retail store.
Branch out from your Woocommerce store.
If you are still on the fence about opening up a Woocommerce retail store, think of it this way, you don’t have a whole lot to lose. Once you have the store open, you can also sell on other platforms from the store. So, you can hook in to sell on eBay or Etsy and all the inventory is tracked for you. There are many ways to add to your store and bring in sales.
If you have a retail location then you have data that you can review about what are some of your hot sellers. Those should be the first things you focus on putting up in your e-commerce store. However, you might be surprised that what sells locally might not be as popular across the country. This is a learning process and the facts will speak for themselves. You might notice some patterns in the sales too. For example, you might be busier during certain months for whatever reason. Many retailers make the most money in the fourth quarter. However, if you are a gardening shop, you will probably be busier in the springtime.
As your business grows you can look to add things that might sell in those slower months. For a garden store, maybe some micro-green kits where people can grow food inside their homes in the winter. This is simply an example, but you get the idea, right?
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