Friday, 15 February 2013

Getting Online


This week I built and created an online store – a proper one with the shopping cart and everything. It was exciting and tedious all at the same time and it made me very thankful that my partner (in life and business) is an expert in these areas of website functionality!

He showed great patience with me as I navigated my way around the new software, uploading my images, changing the way I was structuring it, getting pedantic on the details – and going back time and time again to make changes.
I finally took a deep breath on Sunday and decided to tell people about it and have had ‘ a soft’ launch on Facebook, knowing that this is an evolving project and that every day I can find changes to make – and with over 400 products already listed I can add many, many more!

The online store is for our wedding / event decorative items that we sell – table cloths, chair covers, runners, sashes, mirror bases, lights, candles, petals and table scatters – the whole box and dice to make an event ‘pretty!’. We have been ‘selling ‘ this stuff for ages, mostly to our bides we are working with, but since we have found a great wholesaler we have decided that we will take it ‘National’!

So we have the wholesaler and distribution sorted, I checked all of our competitors prices and we match them, I can market a business, and I have my web guru sitting beside me to help with the set-up and the software required. Then there was the time – do not underestimate the time needed to upload images, put in descriptions, cross link to other products and make the store generally easy to navigate. That is where my anal eye for detail came into it – but my attention span of just wanting it done did cause conflict at times!

I said to Craig, my partner today that I was disappointed that after 3 days no-one had bought from me –to which he informed me that it was early days ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’ stuff and that we needed to integrate our new store in with our existing marketing efforts. This is the territory I was familiar with – time to review brochures, printed ads, adword campaigns the whole lot!

This is what I tell my clients, put the time into have the basis or the plan, and then put in the steps and actions to ‘sell’ it and keep talking about it on whatever channel is available to you. When it comes to going on-line do not procrastinate, I am sure we are all aware that the web is here to stay, it is not going anywhere and for many it is your biggest competitor, so don’t complain – get onboard. Have an expert in web functionality ‘on your team’, take a deep breath, put the time in and make it happen.