Are you stuck because you do not know whether to open an online or physical store? Can you not decide whether to open a virtual version of your local business?
Here at Doofinder we lend a hand so you can make the best decision. So today we have brought you an analysis of the advantages and disadvantages of both models. If you want to start your business with the peace of mind that your choice was the right one, you just have to keep reading.
Advantages of online stores versus physical stores
It is often said that the numbers speak for themselves.
If we trusted only this criteria, we might say that virtual stores have already won local businesses by KO. According to the company RetailMeNot, sales via internet do nothing but grow . If the growth in Europe lies around 20% , according to the National Commission Markets and Competition, Spain exceeds those numbers. In the first quarter of 2016, sales via e-commerce rose about 22 % from last year. Do you want to know why?
We will tell you the reasons.
1. You are open to the world
One of the main advantages of having an online business is that you break the physical barriers . You do not depend on the number of people passing through your street or the number of brochures you have delivered to mailboxes.
From the Internet you can sell to the world.
2. New Customers
Have you ever been travelling and wished that incredible shop you discovered was in your city?
With a local business you can only attract customers who come to your store . With the Internet, it doesn’t matter where customers are, it only matters how good your product are.
3. New sales options
Dropshipping is an attractive option for starting a new business and for those who already have one established.
If you have a shop, dropshipping allows you to open new lines of products and diversify your revenue streams without making a big investment . Remember that the key is to find a good provider .
4. Lower costs
Here there is no doubt, the costs of opening an online store are much lower than if you had to open a local business .
5. No schedules
One of the major disadvantages of physical stores versus e-commerce is this.
There aren’t any holidays or closing times, your business is operating 365 days a year, 24 hours a day.
Advantages of physical stores versus online stores
As they say, every coin has two sides and this issue would not be an exception. Physical stores continue to excel at several points that the virtual stores have not yet reached.
Let's see what they are.
1. Customers want to see the product
There are still people who need to touch, see and feel the product before buying it .
The online businesses have set the wheels in motion in this regard and are increasingly offering the possibility of a completely free return if the product does not satisfy.
2. The difficulty selling certain products online
There are products that for the price or special nature that seem impossible to sell online. A typical example are cars, although as you commented on one occasion, the online car dealerships are a reality that is becoming closer.
3. Customer loyalty
It is true that to serve customers in person promotes loyalty, but this isn’t a definitive argument in favor of local shops.
Online stores have their own ways to get customer loyalty. If your products and services are competitive, you will earn their trust .
Conclusion: physical stores vs. online stores
Although each business model has its advantages, the trend is that sales through e-commerce is a growing slice of the pie. If you set out now, except in a very strange case, it is best that your first steps are with an online store.
But, all the money you save on rent and other costs, invest it in creating a good digital marketing strategy .
If you think that all you have to do is upload products online to your website, you are very wrong. Do you have a physical store?
The reality is that with every day that passes without you creating the virtual version of your store , you’re losing money. This is a minimum investment for all the benefits it can bring you.
Have you made a decision?
Now that you know all the differences between online stores and physical stores , which one do you prefer? Do you prefer a local business or e-commerce?