4 online sales channels that can help boost business
Sales channels are ways that businesses may use to reach potential customers. Usually, business owners use sales channels to present their products or services to customers. In turn, the customers can buy the products or services through the channels. There are two types of sales channels: offline and online. Offline sales channels are more traditional ones like shops and brand stores. Online sales channels can be of different kinds. They include websites, online marketplaces, social media marketing, and many more. Learn about some of the most popular online sales channels and decide how to utilize them for your business.
Owning an e-commerce website:
You can build a dedicated e-commerce website that will feature your products only. It is the most traditional option. It will take some time and work, but in the end, it will provide extra benefits compared to other options. You can build your website on your own if you have enough knowledge of web development. However, it is best to consult a professional. Backend, data security, and analysis are vital parts of a website that can be best done by a professional. E-commerce websites can provide you with various features. For example, you can customize the pages as you wish. You can ensure safe passage for payments. In addition, you don't have to share the marketplace with competitors. Nowadays, it is rare that a renowned brand does not have an online market platform.
Using other hosted platforms:
Many platforms provide the facility to set up a storefront. The difference with a dedicated website is that hosted platforms already have the domain set up. You only need to design the store and post ads about your products. The hosting party will have set up payment options that are secure most of the time. These platforms give a limited number of options for designing. As a result, you lose some freedom. However, they help you save a lot of time that goes into building and maintaining the website. These platforms, like Shopify or Big Cartel, charge monthly for their service. Long term cost of these can be more than dedicated websites.
Getting into a large marketplace:
Another good option is to get into a large marketplace. These marketplaces also have their setups like hosted platforms. Instead of letting the seller customize their storefront, these platforms use fixed layouts. Sellers can use these platforms for advertising. There are a large number of sellers present here. So, the competition is very high. People typically search by the name of the product rather than the brand. Although small businesses get more reach with these platforms, it is much harder for newcomers to survive in the market. Amazon, Etsy, and eBay are some popular online marketplaces.
Social media marketing has become hugely popular in the last decade. During the lockdown, many small businesses used social media to boost their sales. Social media users increased by nearly 10% between 2021 and 2022. It amounts to more than 376 million additional users overall, giving social media a total reach of 4.62 billion people. Everybody is familiar with the rise of TikTok and Instagram reels during this period. Social media can provide exposure for new businesses. They can also work as a communication bridge between sellers and customers. These platforms have recently begun working with other platforms via external links that direct consumers to shopping websites.