There is no denying that the shift to online commerce has been a challenge for some businesses. Those that did not have a strong website and/or delivery infrastructure in place prior to the pandemic were hit with a strong dose of digital reality in a matter of days. And if that weren’t enough, these challenges are even more complex for businesses that operate multiple locations. It has been extremely delicate navigating the balance of keeping physical stores staffed and optimized while managing an online presence that doesn’t cannibalize in-person efforts.
To help multi location businesses in this regard, keep reading to discover 5 best practices for improving profits online.
1. Improve Local SEO Efforts
It is no secret that SEO is critical to an online business’ success. However, few businesses have the correct strategy to truly see results for their SEO efforts.
In 2022, SEO must be highly localized for each of your store locations. Not only does this thin the playing field in a worldwide online marketplace, but it puts the business in contact with much more highly qualified leads ready to make a purchase. In fact, a whopping 78% of local SEO searches result in an offline purchase, demonstrating the power of tailoring your business’ SEO toward local markets. Some ways to help your website rank for local SEO include:
- Creating localized content with specific geographic tags and terms
- Adding top-line store locator software to help leads more easily connect with local vendors
- Including pictures with recognizable local landmarks
- Obtaining reviews and recommendations from local influencers and media personalities
As in any type of business, you have to segment your market to be successful, and using local SEO is one of the best ways to start this process in the world of online commerce.
2. Optimize the Website UX
Hand-in-hand with local SEO is the idea of improving website UX. Generally, websites with a strong UX will rank highly for SEO and websites that rank highly for SEO will have a strong UX. So be aware that ideas such as installing a wordpress store locator and including high quality images will help accomplish both goals.
Nonetheless, UX needs to be given a little extra attention because it is critical to get it correct even before your website starts to rank for SEO. As mentioned, as UX and SEO are so closely related, if you have a poor UX that causes visitors to bounce quickly, you may never emerge from the bottom of search results pages.
In a nutshell, your website’s UX is any and everything that influences how visitors interact with your website. With a strong UX, leads should be able to easily accomplish whatever they came to your website to do, whether that be gathering information, making a purchase, drawing inspiration, or whatever else.
Therefore, some ways to improve your business’ UX include:
- Improving loading time on your website to reduce customer bounce rate
- Creating engaging content that keeps visitors lingering on your site and clicking through to other pages
- Keeping text to a minimum on your homepage while clearly establishing your brand and value
- Embedding easy-to-follow links to social media
When visitors can easily accomplish tasks on your website, they are sure to return and you will see profits soar.
3. Don’t Overlook Email Marketing
It seems like our inboxes are loaded down with spam messages these days. As such, it can be intuitive to believe that your email marketing efforts will get lost in the sea of junk.
While it is true that there is a strong likelihood that customers will never see your emails, the return on investment is undeniable. Statistics show that for every dollar spent on email marketing, businesses can expect to see a $36 return.
This is because email is unmatched in its ability to instantly reach thousands of customers, free of cost.
The key to a successful email marketing campaign is to avoid the pitfalls that snare so many businesses looking to make their mark. Never pay for email lists, avoid spammy language and text in your headlines, and keep your mailing lists up-to-date with clients who have voluntarily furnished their information for the best results.
4. Add Convenience to the Online Checkout Process
Nearly 70% of online shopping carts are abandoned. Therefore, you can make monumental gains in profit just by getting interested customers to finish the checkout process.
Some of the most common reasons for abandoned online shopping carts are:
- Slow loading time
- Complicated checkout procedure that requires account creation
- Not accepting their preferred payment method
- High fees and shipping costs
- Portal that doesn’t seem secure
Therefore, if you can make one-swipe, guest checkout as easy as possible while still guaranteeing user security, you will substantially increase profits simply by closing the deal with customers already on your site.
5. Cultivate Online Reviews
In the social media era, businesses are only as good as their online ratings. People overwhelmingly turn to peer reviews and ratings to make decisions on whether or not to buy from a business. Therefore, the more feedback you can get, the better. Google My Business (GMB) is arguably the most convenient way for curating feedback that is accessible for shoppers, so be sure you set up a GMB account and keep all account information up to date.
Go the Extra Mile a Boost Online Profits Using These 5 Ideas
Achieving a profitable online presence can definitely be a challenge for businesses that operate multiple locations. However, by following the 5 best practices listed above, multi-location companies stand the best chance for success in an increasingly digital business environment!