Digital communication technology has changed the marketplace. With over 1 billion people using Facebook, an online marketing strategy has become just as important as traditional marketing, if not more so. You may think your business doesn't need an online presence, and that you do just fine without digital applications. That may have been true ten years ago, but now a digital presence is essential to maintaining business success and growth. Here are six reasons why online marketing is important to any retail store, including an outdoor sporting goods store.
1. Digital Marketing Increases Profits
You may be wondering how a social media presence can lead to more profits. Take a look at how Hesselson's, a pool and sporting goods store, made over $5,000 in extra profit by using social media. Over a three week period, Hesselson's ran a coupon campaign that gave their Facebook followers a 50% discount on some of their footwear products. At the end of the promotion period, Hesselson's had made over $5,500 in net sales along with a 1,100% increase in ROI. One Facebook campaign had over $5,000 dollars in tangible profit for the business. This shows that a social marketing strategy done right can greatly benefit your store in the way you most desire.
2. Digital Marketing Gets More Exposure for Your Store
Going digital is probably one of the best ways to promote your store. There are now millions upon millions of people using social media every day. People look to a company's social media accounts to put a face to the brand they're interested in. That is quickly becoming the main way people search for and buy products they need. Hikers and other athletes are typically of a younger age, so they are going to have a prominent social media presence. Taking your business to where your customers are spending time online puts your name right in front of them.
3. Digital Marketing Solidifies a Brand for Your Company
Social marketing done right is going to help your store create a solid brand experience. Creating social media accounts will force you to decide on your business identity, as well as what you want your customers to experience from doing business with your store. These intangible qualities in your brand will have tangible benefits. Solid branding entices potential customers to choose your store over a similar business with a less effective brand. This is the reason people flock to Apple and Starbucks over other companies that produce the same quality of products. Read more on the benefits of branding here.
4. Digital Marketing Helps Build Better Relationships With Customers
Social media is a part of your customers' lives, so connecting with them there will foster a better relationship. Listening is the best way to create better communication. This truth extends to digital conversation. You can learn a lot about people from their social media accounts. That knowledge you gain from listening to your customers can help you cater content that will solve problems and delight your customers, turning them into promoters, which breeds even more free advertising.
5. Online Marketing is Cost Effective
Online marketing can be less expensive than traditional marketing with television and radio. Most social media accounts are free to sign up for, and you are generally not restricted in what you put on your pages, unlike the input television or radio studios can have on an advertisement. Running a special promotion on Facebook such as Hesselson's campaign is much cheaper than buying an ad spot on a radio or television station, or a magazine.
6. Online Marketing Makes Your Store More Competitive
Online marketing is going to put your store a giant step ahead of your competitors without an online strategy. According to GE Capital Retail Bank's Second Annual Shopper Study, 81% of consumers research what they want online before they even think about setting foot in a physical store. When consumers search for outdoor sporting goods, only the stores with a solid digital presence are going to be found in the search results. If your brand doesn't have any kind of online presence, then you could be missing out on 81% of people willing to buy from your store.
Traditional marketing is no longer the primary way consumers find out about businesses. Now, online research is how people discover new businesses. A digital marketing strategy will make you more competitive and more visible. It will solidify your brand, help you build better relationships with your customers, keep advertising costs low, and ultimately make you more money.
Social media isn't the only way to create more success. It takes a whole new approach to marketing. Download the free eBook below to find out more about how you can begin to do effective marketing for your store.Unplugged - no computer, no internet, possible? via photopin (license)