There’s a new wave of young entrepreneurs taking over their parents’ businesses, and they are bringing with them a must-do attitude about e-commerce.
Like Baseer Khudayar of Zelen Shoes (Canada’s Answer to Zappos), today’s guest, Brandon Forder of Canadian Pet Connection, didn’t think twice about opening an online store to complement their bricks ‘n mortar locations. To Brandon, it was like opening a new store, but one with much broader reach than a physical store. Why wouldn’t you do it?
Four years in, the e-commerce store has long been profitable and it now brings in 20 – 30% of the company’s sales.
Key Online Marketing Takeaways
1. Leverage Social Media to Make it Personal
Small companies can compete against mega-corporations by leveraging what the small folks can do best: develop personal relationships with their customers. Social media provides a fantastic opportunity to do this, especially when your target customers are as passionate as pet owners.
It is also important to focus on the right social media for your type of products. Pet owners love pet pictures, so visual social media are best for a company like this one: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest.
2. Add Value
Cute pet pictures will get viewers but pairing those cute pictures with solid information about pet nutrition and care is what helps turn those viewers into customers.
You can also add value in surprising and inexpensive ways, like sending along a cookie for the owner along with the pet food they had ordered. Or even just adding a hand-written thank you note.
3. Be Patient
Building a successful e-commerce store and attracting customers to it takes time. But it is do-able, and once you’ve got a fan base growth can really take off.
Now if only e-commerce pictures were as popular as cute cats!