In this day and age, it seems consumers and business owners are gravitating toward eCommerce. Even if this is true, it doesn’t eliminate the need or desire for brick-and-mortar businesses.
Brick-and-mortar businesses provide significant benefits for company leaders and consumers alike, but a serious commitment and solid strategy are required if you want to open a successful operation.
Starting a brick-and-mortar business in 2021 looks a lot different than years before, especially since more and more people are turning to eCommerce operations for their purchases. So, it’s wise to take your time with this decision and think about all involved in it.
Here are four things to consider when starting a brick-and-mortar business.
You May Be on Your Own At First
There are many steps to take and tasks to complete when starting a brick-and-mortar business. Unfortunately, you may not be able to afford to bring on additional team members right away. That means you’ll do a lot of the work yourself at first.
If you aren’t prepared to be involved in every aspect of the business when you start, it may not be the right time to open a brick-and-mortar store. Opening a physical store is a journey, so you must accept and prepare for it for the best chance at success.
Another thing you must consider when starting a brick-and-mortar business is the importance of location.
Location is Huge
It’s all about location, location, location. You’ve likely heard this time and time again. But you must take location into careful consideration when starting a brick-and-mortar business.
Not only do you want to ensure your ideal customers are in the area, that it’s accessible, safe, and can accommodate business growth, you want to ensure your building is a healthy place for people to shop.
For instance, let’s say you find an older, stylish building with the exact aesthetic you’re looking for. You mustn’t be so in love with the look that you neglect to explore the conditions lurking behind the walls, like pests frequently found in an older building.
You may not be able to guarantee a pest-free environment, but you must ensure the building can be cared for in a way that discourages pests from making a home in your building so that your customers can enjoy their time in-store.
It’s also crucial your customers come first in more ways than one when opening a brick-and-mortar location.
Your Customers Come First
Does starting a brick-and-mortar business allow you to serve your customers better? If the answer is anything other than yes, it’s best to look deeper at why you want to start a brick-and-mortar business. This is because your customers come first. If a brick-and-mortar location doesn’t help you serve your customers better, it may not be worth the investment.
On the other hand, if a brick-and-mortar business helps you improve the customer experience, you may want to give it a go. For instance, you can better your customer experience by opening a physical location that compliments your online presence. Then, when they visit your store in person, they should be wowed by the customer service and effort to connect the online shopping experience with the offline one.
Lastly, you must consider the fact that an eCommerce operation is still necessary if you want your brick-and-mortar location to thrive.
An eCommerce Operation is Still Necessary
Even if your brick-and-mortar business takes off, it doesn’t eliminate the need for an online store. Consumers are purchasing more and more online, and that’s only going to continue. Therefore, you must consider whether you’re capable of running an eCommerce operation alongside your brick-and-mortar business.
Running an eCommerce operation that compliments your brick-and-mortar store can:
- Further your brand awareness and consistency
- Connect your online presence with your offline presence
- Help you reach a broader audience
- Strengthen the buyer’s journey
- Make it easier for potential customers to find you
Ensure that you’re able to maintain both financially. Also, consider whether you can put in the effort needed to design, market, and manage your eCommerce store.
Ultimately, your brick-and-mortar location has a better chance at success when it’s run in tandem with a robust eCommerce operation.
These four considerations for starting a brick-and-mortar business aren’t all-encompassing. Instead, use them as a start to your research into whether a brick-and-mortar location is plausible for your business direction. All in all, opening a physical location should make sense financially, for your customer base, and be in alignment with your overall business goals.