With COVID-19 lockdowns enforced throughout Australia, many retail outlets have had to rapidly transition to selling online as their only way to continue operations. Whilst many “bricks and mortar” stores may not have felt they needed a website or a strong online presence in the past, embracing technology will be critical to enable retailers to survive and thrive in this difficult situation.
If you’re a retailer needing to move online, this article is for you. GippsTech’s team have put together a Retail Website Package to assist you in setting up an eCommerce store for your business to allow continued trade. This package has been specifically designed and priced to fit within the budget of government funding packages available to help businesses affected by COVID-19.
Retail stores and COVID-19 restrictions on trading
For some businesses, the new restrictions on face to face store trading will see substantial short-term losses; but for others, this could mean making the decision to close their doors, and their businesses, permanently. Myer has recently announced the closure of their retail stores for 30 days, standing down 10,000 members of staff. However, with a strong push in online marketing to target shoppers to utilise their eCommerce store, Myer (and other large retail chains) should survive the COVID-19 pandemic.
So, how can your retail businesses follow in their footsteps, innovate, and continue to operate through these difficult times?
We recommend setting up an eCommerce store of your own, and promoting your business online to both current, and new customers. For businesses who have limited experience in online trading, our team at GippsTech is here to help you.
We have outlined some important aspects and functionalities of online retailing below:
- Stock inventory that automatically adjusts stock amounts when items are sold
- Postage costs and delivery times
- Safe and secure payments for your customers
- A returns and store credit policy
- Product information which includes pricing and size chart
The stark reality is, online retailing will gain market share through this time, as consumers are forced to purchase online. Even those who previously disliked shopping online are now learning to embrace it, so your business must do the same in order to survive. And whilst the COVID-19 pandemic will eventually subside, the transition to online shopping will continue to rise, so putting your business in a position where it is accessible and available to buyers in the comfort of their own home will be an immediate advantage in the future.
How to get a website built for you in just a few days
If you are one of the many retail owners who need to get online urgently, and you don’t have the time to learn how to build your own website, we’ve created a very simple Retail Website Package for $4999 + GST. This package will include a one page website for your business; with an eCommerce store and payments processor built in, domain registration, and assistance in collecting the content needed for the site, such as a store products and inventory, and some information and text about your retail business.
What you get
- Your own WordPress website, with a landing page and eCommerce store using Shopify integrations. This website is customised with your own logo, colours, photos, and fonts.
- Two weeks of WordPress and Shopify support while you familiarise yourself with your new site.
- Twelve months of hosting, as well as twelve months of website security maintenance including all security updates, backups, monitoring etc.
- A social media marketing consultation and plan to help you let your customers know that they can order from you online.
- No ongoing commissions, platform subscription fees, or recurring costs beyond normal website hosting costs and maintenance costs ($100/mo) going forward.
- Domain registration available for an additional $100.00+gst.
Gain funding for your website
In some areas, grants may be available to assist businesses to adapt and continue operations during the COVID-19 shutdown. We have worked with over 30 businesses in the past to help them apply for grants to fund websites, digital marketing and other projects. While we cannot make any guarantees about securing a grant for your business, we are happy to discuss ways we can help you apply for a grant in a free half-hour consultation.
There are a number of grants available to businesses to assist in remaining operational through this time. If you are a Gippsland business, the Latrobe Valley Authority has a grant of up to $5,000 in funding for eligible businesses, to be used for professional services, which includes websites and digital marketing.
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Software Development Consultant - GippsTech
Elena Kelareva is the founder of GippsTech, a Warragul-based software and web development agency with the mission of growing regional startup and tech ecosystems. Since starting GippsTech in March 2017, Elena cofounded Binary Shift, Gippsland’s first tech and startup conference, ran several tech training events for businesses, and started running regular tech and entrepreneurship meetups in Warragul and Traralgon. Prior to founding GippsTech, she worked for Google, leading product strategy for the team that makes it possible to put a Google Map on your website. She has a PhD in Computer Science from ANU, a Bachelor of Science from the University of Melbourne, and was a lecturer in Advanced Theoretical Computer Science at the University of Melbourne in 2017.