In light of the various trials and tribulations synonymous with opening traditional stores, many budding entrepreneurs have elected to take their retail enterprises online. Not only is this highly cost-effective, it also enables proprietors to reach a broader customer base than they would have with a brick-and-mortar establishment. Of course, this isn’t to say that online store ownership is a walk in the park. Depending on the type of merchandise you specialize in and the effectiveness of your promotional efforts, keeping an online business afloat can prove consistently challenging. Fortunately, avoiding a number of rookie mistakes can help set the stage for long-term success.
1. Reluctance to Collect Bad Payments
When a customer pays with an expired or revoked car or a bad check, stores often don’t become aware of this until after the fact. Although certain big-name establishments have no problem eating the loss, independently-owned enterprises are generally more affected. However, believing they lack the resources to collect payment, many online store owners make no attempt at doing so. Fortunately, there are many convenient ways to recover bad checks online. Working with a highly-rated company like Global Check Recovery can prevent your business from ever again having to shoulder a bad payment.
2. Infrequent Social Media Updates
Any online business that wishes to remain relevant in the age of social media needs to use popular platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to its full advantage. Social media outlets provide businesses of all types with a convenient – and more importantly, free – way to spread their messages. However, to take proper advantage of this, you can’t allow your store’s social media presence to stagnate. Posting daily updates, interacting with your followers and organizing photo contests can keep your customer base in the know and help your store attract a broader audience.
3. Unresponsive Customer Service
Interacting with customers via email lacks the same sense of urgency and importance as face-to-face interactions. As such, many online store owners take a long time to answer customer communiqués and offer up glib unsatisfying responses to questions and concerns. Not only will this lose your store business in the short term, it practically ensures that you’ll be based on social outlets and consumer feedback message boards, potentially paving the way for long-term consequences.
Even for experienced entrepreneurs, keeping an online store financially solvent can be a tricky proposition. However, this feat is by no means impossible, especially if one is armed with the proper knowledge. In the quest to keep your online business profitable, remember to be vigilant about collecting bad payments, maintain a steady social media presence and respond to customer queries in a timely and professional manner.