Using your store to benefit your website

In this episode, we talk about using your physical retail store to benefit your website. Listen to this episode to learn how to grow from 0 to 50,000 in online sales without adding any expenses.

Welcome to the Material Retail Dumps podcast. If you've listened to us before, thanks so much for coming back. If it's your first time listening, welcome Material Retail Dumps is a short form podcast with briefly valuable content for independent retailers. As business owners, we don't have time for a 30 minute lesson with a ton of banter. We get straight to the meat of the topic and aim to give you actionable information and will help you optimize your retail operation and make more money every day. Welcome to Material Retail Dumps, episode 21. This is the first episode in the two episode series. This episode's gonna be about ways to leverage your physical store to benefit your e-commerce business. And the next episode in the series is gonna be about ways to leverage your e-commerce business to benefit your physical store. So let's jump right in. As a brick and mortar retailer, you have a ton of benefits that worked your advantage.

When comparing yourself to someone who just has a website, you already have a store, you have inventory, you have employees, you have customers, those are all things that if you were starting e-commerce from scratch, you would have to build from scratch. So let's talk about all those things and see how they can help you. So first you have a physical store. Well, this one's easy. That just means you have, you know, a place to work, a place to house your inventory, a place to pack your orders, and you don't have to pay for any office space. You don't have to do it outta your house. You have that store, maybe you have a little back room, or maybe you just do it on the sales floor. That's simple, but definitely taken for granted. Um, the next thing I want to talk about is inventory. This is by far the most important.

So as a part of doing business, you undoubtedly buy merchandise and you probably buy merchandise on a regular basis. Maybe it's every week, maybe it's every month, but you're always getting new styles into your store. Um, you always have new items to your customers to choose from, and that's a huge benefit, um, because now you don't have to go out and buy new items for your website. You can take the items that are ready in your store that you're consistently getting, photograph them and put them online. This is a big advantage for two reasons. Number one, you don't have to guess what merchandise is gonna work online because you know what merchandise is working in store. So just start there and see what happens. And secondly, there is no extra cash flow that you have to lay out to purchase more merchandise for your website cuz you have merchandise in store.

So the fact that you have merchandise sitting there gives you a huge advantage cuz you can just go put that product online and start selling. As opposed to someone who doesn't have a store, they're gonna have to buy merchandise. Take the risk that that merchandise not gonna sell and then put it online. Huge advantage. Number two, you have employees. This is a big one. If you run a store, you probably have at least one employee, maybe two, maybe three, maybe 10. Some of these employees are part-time employees, some of them are full-time, maybe it's a store manager or whatever it is, but you have people working for your store. Now, every retail store has slow periods of time, whether that's from 10 to 11:00 AM or whether that's, you know, the three to four o'clock hour or maybe it's just on a rainy Monday. Um, but at the end of the day, there are times where employees are

Not, not necessarily working or they're, you know, they're just not being as productive as they can. Yes, there's always things to do on a sales floor. You can always sweep the floor, you can always change a mannequin, you can always clean up racks, but you do have employees who are sometimes looking for things to do. It's the perfect way to just seed your e-commerce and have them start uploading products to, to your website and other platforms. Um, this is again, a huge advantage versus someone who does not have a store because they might have to hire someone to put up the product, maybe photograph the product, maybe do some social media to drive some people to your website, but you already have those employees. So what I'd say there is maybe just make a little incentive to get them excited about it and then give it to 'em as their job.

Say, Hey, employee number one. I know Mondays are super slow, so I'd love it if you use Monday to get 20 products on our website every Monday. This way, every single Monday you have new products going on your website. Number three, and this one is maybe the most important one, and something that really everybody just takes for granted. It's customers. You have customers, you have a customer base. You are in a community, you're on a street. Customers are walking past your store, customers are coming into your store, customers are buying from your store. Use those customers as your website customers. Now a lot of people will say like, no, I don't want my customers to shop online. I want them to come into the store. There are multiple studies that show that that's not the case. When a customer is loyal to you, they will shop in your store and on your website.

And when a customer is shopping on both channels, they shop more and many times maybe they buy online and return in store. And that's just an opportunity. They come into the store to return your online order. That's a way for you to build a connection with them. Maybe upsell them into something else. Maybe they return one item and they walk outta the store buying three items. Use your customers in your store and get them shopping online. Take their email addresses, take their phone numbers in your store and start emailing them about your website. Put a little sign in your window, put a little sign in your dressing room a little, you know, sticker on the dressing room mirror. You can, you could do so many things in this topic. You put a little note on the back of every price tag that says, shop us online.

You can put a little note on the bottom of your receipt. You can give them a little coupon every time they shop. Staple it to their receipt with, you know, 10% off your first online order. At the end of the day, it's gonna be a huge advantage for someone who has to go out there and build their own customer base from scratch, because guess what? You're ready. Every customer base. So going from zero to 50,000 online is gonna be a hundred times easier when you have a brick and mortar store because you can leverage those assets. And by assets I mean your physical space, your inventory, your employees, and your customers. Well, that's it. I'm looking forward to the next episode where we'll talk about the opposite way how you, how you can use your website to help your physical store. Have a great.

Using your store to benefit your website
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