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Is It Time to Go Online?

How to know if your business should make the transition from brick and mortar to online.

By Abigail Thorpe

The vast majority of shoppers still prefer visiting a brick and mortar store to shopping online, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make the transition. Every year, more and more shoppers are going online, and current health concerns are only proving that e-commerce is continuing to grow in market share. Add to this the fact younger generations (your future customers) are more inclined to shop online than any other generation, and it’s clear that taking your business online is important—but is it the right step for your business now?

Last week we discussed the importance of having an online presence, whether or not you have a brick and mortar store. But what about transitioning all or the majority of your business and sales online? 1.79 billion people shopped online last year, and global ecommerce sales are expected to reach 4.8 trillion by 2021, according to Fundera. The takeaway? Online shopping isn’t going anywhere but up.

Brick and mortar is still essential for many businesses, but there are several things to consider when deciding to move your business online. The perks? If you want to be able to run your business from anywhere, reach customers at any time, wherever they are in the world, and expand your business into more markets and reach people who can’t physically visit your store, then online is a great option.

But there are lots of online businesses trying to cut through the jumble and reach customers. Which means for your business to make it online, it needs to have an edge over the competition. Is your business easily—or even more successfully—run online? Can you deliver goods and services that customers are looking for, in a way that is different from or better than your competition?

Taking your business online is relatively inexpensive, but you need to have a good business plan and a marketable online offering. You also need a loyal following that is better served by your business going online. In the age of social media and smartphones, online businesses are easily accessible and shareable, but you have to stand out from the crowd and continue to attract customers in order to be that business that customers want to share, post about and continue visiting.

So maybe you’ve decided to grow your online business in addition to, or in place of, your brick and mortar store—what are the next steps? Stay tuned, next week we’ll talk about how you make the transition, once you’ve made the decision. Curious what online can do for your business? Get in touch with Rocket Fish Digital and we’re happy to help.

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