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Digitalization of offline retailers in India

In recent times, India has seen a surge in the demand for going digital. While many business owners cashed into this digital move, others were left behind in the race for success and in return, sales. It’s no wonder that digitalization of offline retailers is a matter of debate as many argue about the positives and negatives of this sudden change. But then, nothing is permanent but change, and so should your business tactics evolve with the ever-changing times.

Small and medium-sized business owners are exploring digitalization but some express fear, or doubt as the outlines of going digital are unclear to many. With the change in modern technologies, keeping pace with every technical update may seem a cumbersome task for many business owners. However, if done suitably, digitalization and digital marketing can bring about a positive change to your business. This has the power to propel your product or service straight into the hands of existing and new consumers.

The Benefits of Going Digital for Offline Retailers

1) Expanding your Reach with a Click

Lakshmi was a proud owner of a local boutique. However, with the ever-increasing rate of shop rentals, Lakshmi embraced going digital. She witnessed her sales increase from local buyers to pan India. As customer testimonials came flowing in, she felt this was the best decision ever taken.
Going digital increases the reach of offline retailers. Casual browsers can turn into loyal customers with a sound marketing strategy. It’s easy to showcase your product range or speak about your service online without incurring heavy expenditures. Besides, you can edit and view the content in real time. Advertisements can be targeted to a preferred region of your choice. So, you expand your reach with the simple click of a button. In this impatient world of fast service, busy consumers find it easy when ads are tailored to their requirements. This saves them the hassles of long queues of going to a store, long billing procedures, cash transactions, and more. When information is at the click of a button, it’s easier to grab eyeballs when you go digital. The eCommerce giant ‘Amazon’ has already taken away the task of having billing counters at stores.

2) Going Mobile

Having a responsive website is a must in today’s times. Besides, the average Indian is constantly logged on to their smartphones to read the news, shop for essentials, bill payments and more. Researchers revealed Indians spend XX hours and XX minutes browsing on social media sites, every single day. This presents an opportunity to everyone looking to go digital and widen their reach globally. 62% of the population refers to search engines or popular social media sites for purchase of electronic goods, apparel and more information on their preferred e-tailers. It’s predictable for every consumer to check the reviews of the products/service online before making the final purchase. When such factors dictate and influence buyers, it’s a must for offline retailers to build their presence online. Globally, usage of Internet has surged from X% to XX%. Smartphones are the hub spot for all businesses waiting to tap the right market.

3) Higher Conversions

A sound digital strategy allows small retailers and business owners to improve their campaigns based on the responses received. A casual browser can turn into a loyal reader, subscriber or even a buyer! There are various tools and techniques that form the base to achieve a higher conversion rate for online retailers. For eg.: Effective Facebook campaigns can target the appropriate buyers. This saves time, and money spent otherwise on advertising for an unknown market. Email marketing, making the right use of search engine optimization, correct social media channels act as tools and techniques you can use to improve and build your digital marketing campaign.

4) Building a Brand Presence Online

It’s not enough to have a physical store somewhere in town. Chances are, you’ll probably have loyal customers in the vicinity. With digitalization of offline retailers, it’s easier to improve and build your brand presence as you get to meet your market – directly. While you can target a niche audience, maintaining a sales target is also necessary. And, this is possible with a sound customer service. Digitalization gives you the opportunity to present valuable information about your products, improvements, testimonials, and you can interact with your audience live on any social media platform. A sound customer service will attract new buyers and retain existing ones adding more feathers to your cap in the online business arena. Your loyal customers will automatically boast about their purchases online leading to more queries and purchase.

5) Improve Return on Investment (ROI)

Why does going digital for small retailers matter? Because you can see your investments returning in the form of measurable ROI! Choose a sound strategy, invest right and use the appropriate tactics that will prove their worth. You can watch how people reacted to your advertisement, know the bounce rate, change/improve content and design, and keep the flow of traffic steady. Use appropriate content to convert them into sales and leads. It’s easier to improve your ROI as compared to investing in traditional forms of advertising that do not reach your target audience.

6) Using Design to Your Advantage

Design has the power to attract and influence minds of readers. When a business goes digital, it allows you to use the most powerful button – “call-to-action”. A clever design makes a user perform an action leading to a possible sale. Such buttons entice readers to either ‘download’ (documents, PDFs, white papers, etc.), ‘Buy’, ‘Sign-Up’ (Announcements of discounts), and more. The button and its purpose can be defined by you leading to generate the best results for your business.

7) Embrace New Trends

Content is king and design holds equal weight. The digitalization of your business shall allow you to embrace new trends with an effortless ease. Custom-made content is ideal to target genuine buyers. The availability of new techniques allows business owners to explore new avenues without investing a large amount of money. Experts who can provide a sound digital marketing strategy will allow you to select appropriate tools and solutions that will help to discover new audiences. Technology combined with perfect content is a sure-fire way to gain success online for budding entrepreneurs.

8) Personalized Offers

Going digital offers a business owner the advantage of understanding their customer’s needs and want. It’s certainly not a surprise to see the advent of artificial intelligence and the availability of virtual assistants that predict your needs, and preferences. A continuous effort in marketing gives one the power to know more about a customer. A simple newsletter via email sent before a birthday announcing a ‘discount on purchase’ for that month gives you the chance of building upon your relation with the customer.
Going digital need not send panic waves in your mind. There are leading websites and online directories that allow you to list your business for the tech-savvy generation. While one can’t deny the growing influence of the Internet and the digital media, it’s of utmost importance you work in hand with a responsible agency that will help you achieve maximum results in minimum time.

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