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Selling online can offer businesses the potential to reach a much wider audience. But it’s important to enhance your operations to make the most of online channels.
Promotions Warehouse knows this only too well. It sells an array of marketing tools and products to which companies can add their own brand – everything from pens to keychains to tote bags. The firm’s online journey started by building a user-friendly website, before rolling out extensive digital
marketing strategies to engage its audience and win market share. Over time, it developed a significant social media presence and invested in search engine optimisation and digital advertising to attract online shoppers. As the company gained traction, it enhanced its website’s features, adding secure payment options, detailed product descriptions and online customer support.
Build a great website
When you want to expand into online channels, the starting point must be your website, says David Walsh, CEO, SEO Web Logistics.
“Building a great website is the first step to take when targeting additional work online. It’s important to have a website that’s user friendly, looks professional and speaks directly to your audience.”
David says another tip is to ask happy customers to write Google reviews. This can be a great way to encourage new customers to buy from you.
Choosing the right market begins with an understanding of what people are searching for online.
When it comes to choosing the right payment gateway, David says working through the costs and contracts of each one should only be part of your research.
“Think about the technical aspects of your decision, such as how the gateway integrates into your website, systems and processes. Great technical support is also vital because it can mean the difference between an easy setup and a nightmare. Read online reviews of the gateways you’re considering to understand the frustrations of existing users.”
Identify the right markets
Choosing the right market begins with an understanding of what people are searching for online. This starts with thorough research.
“Analyse potential markets based on factors like customer demographics, demand for your products, competition and the regulatory environment. Consider cultural differences and language barriers if you plan to enter international markets,” says Rory.
Don’t forget to tailor your marketing to the jurisdiction you are entering if you’re planning to sell overseas through online channels.
Choose the right online payment gateway
Rory Boyle, managing director of Promotions Warehouse explains choosing the right payment gateway is crucial for online retailers.
“Look for a secure and reputable provider that supports popular payment methods such as credit cards and PayPal. Competitive transaction fees and seamless integration with your e-commerce platform are also must-haves. It is also critical to prioritise safety and data protection to build trust with customers.”
- Localising your website and marketing.
- Using international SEO techniques.
- Collaborating with local influencers.
- Leveraging social media platforms that are popular in the target economy.
“Any decisions you make about the markets you want to enter should be data-led. If you know what people are searching for on Google, you can tailor your website and try to get to page one of the search results, either via Google ads or SEO,” says David.
Understand the insurance implications of selling online
It’s vital to ensure your existing insurance policies cover you if you are planning to expand into online or offshore markets.
“You may need to explore product liability coverage and shipping insurance to protect your business from unforeseen risks and legal issues,” says Rory.
If you’re thinking of selling online, talk to your broker today to make sure you’re covered, no matter where you operate.