demiCouture | VANCOUVER FASHION & STYLE BLOG + VANCOUVER FASHION + GLOBAL FASHION


A Lack Of Web Presence *IS* Hurting Your Retail Business

This is not a usual post for this blog, but I feel it is a very important topic that requires attention.

Let’s start with the basics. As a blogger that focuses often on Vancouver-based retail experiences, if you have an awesome store, I want to link you up.

I’ve seen (albeit 2nd hand) how tough manning a retail space and managing everything on the surface and in the background as well. When I can’t find a web page or blog to link up to one of my favorite stores, it hurts me. It hurts because I know exactly how much free online advertising and easy customer references these places are turning away.

You need the basics. These include:

  • A branded site and/or blog related to your business.
  • A highly visible business address located on your primary page.
  • A list of brands/styles/types of items you carry in store.
  • Photos of clothing in-store, as well as the displays to entice potential shoppers.
  • A press/customer inquiry form or address by which you or your employees can be contacted.
  • An “about us” page. Put a human side to your shop! This does not have to be overly corporate; I find (especially with vintage shops/smaller boutiques) if there is a story as to how this space came to be it encourages me to stop by and see more. It also gives your potential customers a reason to visit your store in lieu of a larger retail chain.
  • Remember:

    Any site is better than nothing.
    If you cannot afford to buy a domain or have someone whip up an extensive web space, sign up for free blog space. WordPress (yoursite.wordpress.com) and Blogger (yoursite.blogger.com) offer free accounts with many pre-configured visual options. These are very easily managed options, and even the least web savvy users can excel using these publishers.

    Domains are REALLY cheap!
    There are many options for those wishing to personalize their domains (yoursite.com). Sites like Godaddy offer domain purchases for$6.95 US. The only downer is that many American-run domain sellers cannot sell .ca domains; so if your .com (etc) version is already purchased, you will need to find a Canadian domain seller. Keep in mind as well that there are requirements for having a .ca domain where you must be a Canadian citizen, etc. This is explained thoroughly on the sellers’ sites before and after purchasing.

    You don’t have to spend hours updating daily.
    You can do weekly or monthly or seasonal stock updates. Of course, if you have time to do trending reports and how they directly related to the stock you sell that will help with readership. While simply having the space will absolutely help you with (at the very least) basic search engine marketing, the more often you update and the more thorough content you provide equals more regular visitors; which in turn converts into more potential sales.

    This site will help you brand your store and help consumers remember its name.
    Every time a person Googles your store, or types in your shop’s URL into their browser’s address bar they are remembering its name. Your store’s brand is very powerful. In a sea of shops who [to the untrained eye] sell very similar wares, this is your ultimate weapon. If you properly associate your style and what is unique abut your items to your shop name; this will be automatically correlated by the consumer every time a person types your keywords, or your URL. If you brand, you will create loyal customers.

    Professional photography isn’t as expensive as you may think.
    I’m not talking about a posh (and very pricey) experience, but professional equipment and a keen eye for angles and arranging can bring exactly what you need to your images. This way you can project the best of what you have to offer and reel customers in with your delicious images; while keeping things relatively inexpensive.

    If you don’t have time to do this yourself; get someone such as myself to do it for you. We can work within your budget, and work out something that gives both parties what they need.

    [CONTACT ME]

    Basically, the bottom line is get on it. The more time you wait the more business you lose.

    A Lack Of Web Presence *IS* Hurting Your Retail Business

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1 Comment so far
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Eric

Cool post. 100% great content everytime. Thanks for sharing.

Trackback by Eric




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