from online to a physical retail location

Making the Transition from Web to Brick and Mortar

Making the transition from selling your products on the web to an actual brick-and-mortar store can often feel like a daunting experience. Hiring employees, figuring out store displays, and dealing with all the paperwork can leave many web entrepreneurs wondering if it will eventually pay off.

Despite the convenience and popularity of eCommerce websites, 91.5% of all retail purchases are still made in a brick-and-mortar store. People want to touch and feel a product before they buy it. It not only adds a sense of trust but helps further establish your brand in the minds of your customers.

If you’re considering moving your online eCommerce business to a physical location, here are five things you should take into consideration:

Cash Flow

Brick-and-mortar business have many fixed monthly costs. Payroll, utilities, rent, and even local business taxes can add up really quickly. If you make the transition, you’re going to quickly need enough cash flow to get up and running—as it can take several weeks to a few months to see a measurable amount of foot traffic walk through your front door.

Just because your business is popular online, doesn’t mean that people off the streets will rush right in when you hang the “open for business” sign. You’ll need to advertise your physical location and then wait for the crowds to find you. A general rule of thumb is that it can take anywhere from six months to a year before a new business starts seeing a steady stream of customers.

Cash Management

While electronic payment methods are popular in retail environments, some of your customers will prefer to pay with cold hard cash. This presents several opportunities for theft and human error, which can take a tremendous toll on the bottom line of a retail business.

Adopting cash management best practices is an excellent way to limit risk and help ensure that there is a verifiable chain-of-custody that will keep your hard-earned money safe. It can also help cut down on the time managers spend tracking down errors and end-of-day reconciling.

Branding and Store Design

Designing an eCommerce website is a lot easier—and less costly—than it is to design a physical retail store. You’ll need to make sure that the shelving, display islands, and both interior and exterior décor match well with your branding.

There are also many psychological nuances to store design that can heavily influence sales. For example, 90% of consumers will tend to make a right hand turn when they first enter a store.

You can approach the layout of your store in one of two ways:

  • Hire an expensive professional to design it and spare no expense
  • Research online and design it yourself.

If you don’t have the budget to hire a professional retail store designer, there are plenty of online guides that go into much greater detail about the psychological principles and best practices of retail store design.

POS System

Choosing the right point-of-sale (POS) system is very important in keeping your business running smoothly. In addition to selecting the right vendor based on the features that they offer; you’ll also need to apply for several merchant accounts through the banks and credit card companies.

Even though a POS system costs more than a traditional cash register, it can save you money and headaches in the long run. They offer more security, can help save money on bookkeeping and accounting fees, and can electronically incorporate their data into CRM’s, various SaaS products, and even smart safes.

Smart Safe

A smart such, such as the CashWizard from AMSEC, can streamline troublesome cash management practices. It will help eliminate human error, theft, and reduce the amount of time your cashiers and managers spend dealing with cash.

A smart safe can also connect to the cloud, perform change order requests, and even allows for remote access and management. It performs manual tasks that are often prone to human error or internal theft. This will help free up the time of your cashiers and managers and allow them to focus their efforts on running your business.

Moving Your Business from Web to Offline

There are many things that businesses should take into consideration when moving from an eCommerce site to a brick-and-mortar one. While physical locations can have higher monthly operating expenses than a website, they can also make a lot more money—and aren’t solely dependent on traffic from Google and Facebook.

There are several tools, such as POS systems and smart safes, that can help increase efficiencies, secure your cash, and give you peace of mind at the end of the day. If you’d like to learn more about CashWizard smart safes, visit our website or give us a call at (951) 685-9680.