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Don’t Have E-Commerce? How to Get Website Visitors to Come Into Your Store

by aschmidt

get_people_in_your_storeIt seems like e-commerce is the future, but if your business hasn’t quite made the jump to online sales, it doesn’t mean you can’t cash in on online marketing. In fact, businesses are in a better position now than ever before to leverage their online presence in order to drive traffic to their physical stores. What this means is that if you don’t yet have an e-commerce store established, you can still capitalize on opportunities to drive website visitors to your brick-and-mortar locations. Below are some key techniques to help you merge your online and offline efforts in order to increase your in-store foot traffic.

1. Social Media Promotions

This is one of the most tried-and-true methods for bringing people into the doors of your physical locations. Treat fans and followers of your business on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., to exclusive promotions that require a unique “social media only” promo code in order to take advantage of special discounts, first-time customer offers, BOGO sales, etc. You can also use your social media accounts to showcase new products, or items that will only be available for a limited time.

2. Email Marketing

Establish an opt-in email capture on your website that can collect your visitors’ email addresses in return for some type of in-store discount or giveaway. Since more than 90% of consumers check their email on a daily basis, you have a high likelihood of reaching your target audience with emails that highlight various in-store promotions or sales events. Once you have the visitor’s email address, you now have a highly targeted prospect that will more than likely be willing to participate in future events and promotions sent via email as well.

3. Highlight Positive In-Store Customer Experiences

There’s something about a genuine customer review or recommendation that’s worth its weight in gold as far as providing social proof and reinforcing the credibility of your business. Something as simple as showcasing a photo of a customer (with their consent, of course) enjoying a positive in-store experience can act as a magnet to draw other people into your store.

You can post these photos in a prominent place on your website, as well as on all of your social media channels. It’s no secret that people tend to trust peer reviews and recommendations more than ads, so use this important tool to your advantage in order to incentivize and convert your website visitors into foot traffic at your local physical outpost.

4. Include a Store Locator Feature on Your Website

Your customers can’t visit your store if they don’t know where it is! Whether you have one store or 100 stores, be sure to prominently display your store’s physical address on your website, and encourage your web-based traffic to come in and visit. If you have multiple stores, include a “Store Locator” feature that enables web visitors to search for the store closest to them via zip code or mile radius parameters. Google Maps offers businesses the ability to build a “Store Locator” using their API; you can find out more about how to do that here.

5. Create a Smartphone App

A large portion of smartphone users will use some type of app to help them with their purchase decision before they even set foot in a store. Not only that, but nearly 40% of all smartphone users will check product availability by way of a mobile app instead of driving to the store in person to find out if the item is in stock. Creating a mobile app will provide additional accessibility for your target audience by giving customers an easy way to stay up to speed with your available in-store merchandise. It’s also a great way to bring people into your physical locations by way of push notifications that highlight special promotions or sales events.

Now’s the time to start ramping up your online marketing to attract holiday shoppers – catch their attention and make them feel welcome in your store with the above tips.

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