20 years ago, the local high street was the hub of the community, bustling with activity as people went from shop to shop - butchers, bakers, gift shops, clothing retailers, hardware and DIY. Yet in the age of supermarkets, retail parks and the Internet, the high street is in sharp decline - up and down the country retailers are closing their doors, both small independents and also major household names.
At the same time, in 2010 over £100 BILLION was spent online in the UK - online sales are now over 10% of the UKs GDP! Online sales have been growing faster than almost any area of our economy for 10 years and show no signs of slowing, as more and more people are getting Internet access, broadband is getting faster, mobile apps mean shopping from your smartphone or tablet has never been easier and improved online security means our transactions are safer than ever before.
New businesses exist now that could never have existed 15 years ago - starting your own Internet business is available to anyone, anywhere. An online business never closes, it can be run from anywhere, it can sell to customers anywhere in the world at any time of day or night and the set-up costs are TINY in comparison to almost any other business - the possibilities are endless!
So let me ask you a question:
On a scale of 1 to 10, how well are you taking advantage of this opportunity?
If the answer to this is not 9 or 10 - what is this costing you every year? £1000? £10,000? £1m? £10m?
Whether you are looking to start your first online business or have an existing website that isn't working well enough for you, whether your website will be your only source of income or whether it will be an addition to your core business activity - we can help.
JDR have designed, built, optimized and worked with over 100 e-commerce websites, here are 3 things we've learnt:
- It's not all about price - John Lewis achieved more than £500m a year in sales in 2010 from their website, yet most of their products could be found cheaper elsewhere. People want to trust you, have confidence their payment will be secure and they will get a good quality product quickly and that they will be looked after if things go wrong. They also want the buying process to be quick and easy and hassle free; they want wide variety of choice and want recommendations. They want lots of information about the product and to be able to see it in as much detail as possible.
- If your customers can't find you, then you have no chance - opening your online business and waiting for the orders to flood in will not work in today's competitive online marketplace, you have to ensure when your customers start searching for your products, they find your website first.
- You can't just let it gather dust - you wouldn't open a shop and never change the window displays, change products or prices or put on sales would you? It's the same with your e-commerce website, you'll need to update the products and prices, do regular special offers, stay in contact with your customers by e-mail and through social media, use loyalty points, cross selling. This might sound like a lot of work but with the right software and the right support it is easy to keep your e-commerce website up to date and keep customers coming back again and again.
Which of these best describes you?
Your first e-commerce website
If it's your first e-commerce website you'll need advice and support. From technical details like payment gateway, delivery charges and terms and conditions to more fundamental questions like how to market the products successfully, we have a tried and tested process to help you get up and running quickly and successfully. You'll get:
- Advice and guidance - both when setting the website up initially, but also once the site has gone live we provide ongoing reviews and support and guidance.
- Easy to use software - so that it's easy for you to add and remove products, do special offers, change prices, email customers.
- Full training - many business owners struggle with remote support, wading through training manuals and complex software. We believe in personal service and providing full training so your business can hit the ground running.
You want a better, more effective e-commerce website
If you already have an e-commerce business, here's how we can help:
- Design - look at the best online businesses in your industry and compare them to your current website. Our design team can help you develop a site that looks better and works better than your competitors so your potential customers feel 'safe' and feel confident buying from you.
- Copy and layout - our experience in sales and marketing means we can work with you to make your website quick and easy to buy from, well laid out and easy to navigate, well written and convincing.
- Advanced Software - you can use our specialist software JDR Enterprise which has been designed to be easy to use and has an incredible range of features. We can also work with a range of 'off the shelf' products, such as Actinic, Prestahop, Joomla, Cube Cart, Zen Cart, etc.
You want to market your e-commerce website
You could have the best store in the world, but if you were off the beaten track and had only a tiny amount of footfall you would not succeed! Put your shop in the middle of Oxford Street, London though and you will have a different experience! We can promote and market your website online using a combination of:
First, we need to know about your business and what you want to achieve online - you can start by submitting a brief, by speaking to us on the phone on 01332 343281 or we can organise to meet with you either in person or online via a webinar.
How long are you prepared to wait before making your business a 10/10?