So you want to start a business? Let's see, you will need to rent, lease or buy a storefront and then purchase display racks. You will need to heat and cool the display area for customer comfort. There will be insurance to cover liability and loss and you'll need to ensure plenty of parking so customers can get to the store easily. Oh, don't forget any potential landscaping and snow removal you might need to take care of seasonally.
On the other hand I suppose you forget most of those issues and make your business platform an electronic one.
With an online store you don't have to worry about parking spaces or checkout lines. You don't have to worry about snow removal or expensive climate control. Maybe the best part is that your store can be open even when you sleep. You never have to close and shoplifting is ‘virtually’ non-existent.
As gas prices went beyond four dollars a gallon in the summer of 2008 it became clearer every day that an online store had become a consumer's best friend. It is possible that the savings in fuel can offset any additional expenses in shipping. In many cases items can be purchased for much less in an online environment simply because ecommerce generally has much less overhead expenses.
Yes, it is possible that hackers can break into your cyber store, but they can't take any tangible products. If you manage your security well you may not have a problem with hackers. If this is the most difficult challenge you face in cyber store ownership then you should have it pretty easy.
There remains a role for standard brick and mortar stores, but the role of online business is becoming not only more accepted it is becoming a desired part of the shopping experience.
When a customer takes his or her business online they can find locations where they can compare costs as well as similar products they may need. They can read about the product and find ways to use the product to their advantage.
If you work to optimize your site with potent knowledge-based content you will generally find that consumers reward your information with trust. That trust often translates into a purchase - even if that purchase is not made on their first visit.
When you begin to acknowledge that the startup costs for an online store are significantly less than a brick and mortar alternative and then couple that with the automation available to make your store available around the clock (including all holidays) it just makes sense to consider a new avenue of commerce.
It is true that there is a mature generation that hasn't completely embraced online purchases, but children are learning at a much younger age how to navigate the web and they understand the value of shopping online. Someday they could be your customers - their parents may be willing to buy from you now.
The dynamics of commerce are changing and the online environment provides so many pluses that traditional and nontraditional businesses alike are finding the online world a very good place to meet shoppers.
Scott Lindsay is a web developer and entrepreneur. Make A Website in minutes with HighPowerSites.com. Sell Ebooks at BooksWealth.com.