As customers continue to purchase products online more and more, your business must be able to sell and deliver goods bought via the internet as much as those purchased in your physical retail store.
Five Tips for Integrating an Online Store with a Physical Retail Store
But the two entities should work well together. Check out the following five tips for integrating your online store with your brick-and-mortar one.
Create an Online Store That Functions on All Screens and Integrates with Your Physical Store
You need to think of your physical store, your eCommerce store, and any additional apps as pieces of the same puzzle. After all, many customers will browse your online products and deals before purchasing in your physical store.
By integrating all of your shopping channels, your customers have more buying options, which will help to prevent them from turning to a competitor for a specific need. So, make sure your online customers can browse on any device.
That includes making your website and apps optimized for mobile use. When you create a responsive site that functions well on all types of screens, you will gain more business online and in-store.
Use POS Integration Software
When using inventory managing applications, things like manual reconciliation and complex returns processes can lead to disappointed customers and a loss in revenue, so integrating the point of sale with eCommerce is paramount.
Thankfully, you can use an eCommerce POS integration software like Accumula to automatically keep track of your inventory. Simply connect your existing POS with your website for a single distributed truth across your inventory managing apps.
Build a Native App
While you can build your own website where customers can purchase your products, you can also use third-party sites. Even if you decide to do the latter, it is important to have the former as well, as your website should be the first port of call for customers online, where they can view and purchase all of your online and in-store products.
But you should also consider building a native app to enhance the purchasing experience. By integrating your brand into users’ everyday lives via a native app, your products will always be right at your customers’ fingertips, enabling them to easily make repeat purchases. A native app should offer personalized features to facilitate comprehensive and convenient shopping.
Choose the Right Ordering Option for Your Needs
Before you begin setting up an online presence to integrate with your physical retail store, you need to determine how you will receive orders. You can either manage them yourself through your website or app, or you can use an ordering system from a third-party platform.
While the former may be less expensive, it can also be very time-consuming and technically challenging. If you choose to set up an ordering system yourself, there are various plug-in tools available to help. If you decide to go with a third-party ordering system, you pay a monthly fee to use an existing solution that makes it easier to start selling online straight away.
Choose the Right Delivery Option for Your Needs
You also need to consider how you will deliver orders purchased online. Seeing as your products can be bought by anyone in any place via the web, your standard in-store delivery system will have to adapt.
You could still manage the delivery of goods bought online yourself, but processing, packing, and shipping logistics can be very challenging. You will also need to determine the radius of your delivery zone.
Alternatively, you could go with a third party to handle all of the shipping operations for you. The latter is a good option, as all of your products will be picked up, packed, and shipped directly to your customers in an efficient and professional manner.