10 Tips That Will Help Your Business Go Digital

As ecommerce continues to grow at a faster rate than offline commerce, sometimes this is occurring at the direct expense of brick-and-mortar locations, with customers going to a store to examine a product, smartphone in hand, then ordering the product online.  As enterprises such as news media or any business whose prospects depend on the ability to interact in a timely manner with customers realize the importance of online business, at some point they make the critical decision that they need to put their business online.  Once this decision is made, here are ten tips on how to carry it out:

  1. Identify the target audience.  If you are seeking to reach a young and mobile demographic, there is a good chance the web is the place to do that.
  2. Consider the competition.  If your competitor is online, there is a good chance you should also be online, but this does not necessarily mean you should copy the format of your competitor.  Changes in the technology may even enable you to leapfrog the competition.
  3. Strategic partnerships.  Some businesses related to yours may offer an opportunity to link your service to theirs and expand the audience you can reach.
  4. Social networking.  Many alternatives are available for using social networking sites to keep in touch with customers and inform them of sales and new products.  Many businesses are using Facebook for this, but you should think carefully about which services are best for your specific business.
  5. Website creation.  More alternatives are available than ever before to enable you to get on line quickly, effectively, and relatively inexpensively, but this can be a crucial choice, and a sloppy presentation or poor execution of the technology can cause you to miss opportunities or even set you back.
  6. Downtime and other out(r)ages.  The more successful your online business becomes, the more customers come to depend on it, the less you can afford untimely downtime.  It is important to provide for needed maintenance and to do this at a time that will cause the least possible disruption of your business.
  7. Mobile payment.  Increasingly, smartphones are being used to enable quick and efficient payment processing.  This calls for a thorough evaluation of which service will best meet your needs, and again, poor execution can actually damage your business.
  8. Security.  Another potential pitfall to take into account is the potential for a data security leak that could cause customers to lose confidence in their ability to do business with you.
  9. Supply chain management.  Just as an online presence enables you to reach customers more effectively, if your business involves inventory, it enables you to manage your inventory and monitor the flow of goods in real time.
  10. Consultation.  The significance of all of these issues to the survival of your business places a premium on expert advice on best practices when it comes to your online business, so you will want to make sure to have a computer network consultant close at hand.
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