Digital Transformation: Pivoting From Offline to Online for Business Performance
Feeling confused and weary from the constantly evolving regulatory landscape due to the COVID-19 pandemic? Are you desperately seeking a way for your business to prevail against the forces of the formidable virus? Change is the only constant. In light of the prolonged pandemic which has seen frequent, unpredictable lockdowns, many of our B2B and B2C customers ranging from HR Professional Services to Wholesale Health Supplements are continuously looking for new ways to transform their business model, branding, marketing and sales to mitigate the business impact from the uncertain environment. In this article, you will learn the benefits of digital transformation and how to transform your business from offline to online.
Why Should You Move Your Offline Business Online?
Before we get into how you can take your offline business online, it’s important to understand why you should do so. Here are some of the reasons why you should embark on a digital transformation journey:
1️⃣ COVID-19 Pandemic & Changing Consumer Behaviour
The prolonged COVID-19 pandemic has forced brick-and-mortar businesses to shut so as to stem the spread of the relentless virus. This has sent many businesses pivoting from offline to online. Third-party e-commerce players in the likes of Lazada, Qoo10 and Shopee report an increasing "migration" of traditional brick-and-mortar retailers onto their platforms, with Lazada having onboarded eight times the number of sellers last year. The shift in consumer behaviour towards e-commerce was prevalent even before the advent of the unprecedented pandemic. According to MediaOne Marketing, there has been a steady upward trend among Singapore’s e-commerce consumers beginning with 2019 that is projected to reach 4.4 million users by 2023. It’s imperative that you evolve with your customers if you wish to remain competitive in the field.
2️⃣ Expand Reach to Target Audience & Maximise Marketing ROI
Bringing your business online not only allows you access to 463 million internet users in Southeast Asia, but also to the global village which is made possible by the emerging, advanced technologies of today. Through the use of various digital marketing strategies such as investing in paid advertising on platforms such as Google Ads, social media marketing, email marketing and search marketing, B2B and B2C brands can expand their reach to their target audience, thereby enabling an endless supply of potential customers and new leads. Return on marketing investment is the practice of attributing profit and revenue growth to the impact of marketing initiatives. With the ease of tracking the performance of your marketing campaigns, you can better optimise your marketing efforts in real time, thus maximising your return on marketing expenditure.
3️⃣ Augment Customer Experience & Support
With an online presence, you will not be limited by standard store hours as you will find that there are no time boundaries on the internet. This flexibility enables you to stay open around the clock, thereby creating more valuable opportunities for potential customers to discover and interact with your business at their convenience. You can also explore new technologies such as the use of chatbots to answer commonly asked questions throughout the day. We have helped many of our clients to set up an automated chatbot feature for their online marketplaces. Especially useful during peak seasons when there is a surge in customer enquiries, the chatbot function reduces the need for repetitive tasks and more time and resources can be productively diverted to solving complex customer problems, closing deals and planning strategies. It also helps to accelerate chat response rates by providing almost instantaneous responses, thus improving customer satisfaction.
How to Transform Your Business From Offline to Online?
✅ Evaluate Your Existing Digital Presence
The first step to digital innovation is to assess your current online presence such as a website and/or social media accounts. Perform an audit on your digital assets - what worked or didn’t work? Did you fully exploit all the features and functions made available to you on each platform? The meaningful insights that you have derived from this activity will aid in developing your digital transformation strategy.
✅ Build & Optimise Your Website
Although personal preferences for design elements may vary, one thing for sure is that everyone wants to enjoy a positive customer experience when navigating a website. Firstly, you have to ensure that your website is consistent with your brand. Creating a seamless, integrated omnichannel experience for your customers across your online and offline channels has become a business imperative, especially since consumers are using multiple touchpoints and therefore, expect consistent interactions across channels. It’s also essential to adopt a mobile-first approach when designing your website as over 90% of Singapore’s population use a smartphone and over 50% of all online purchases are now completed using mobile devices. Having to transform one of our clients’ e-commerce website has led to an increase in revenue 100% y-o-y within less than 6 months.
✅ Leverage the Power of Social Media
With 4.96 million social media users in Singapore which is equivalent to 84.4% of the total population, it’s no surprise that a growing number of businesses are beginning to penetrate the space in order to spread their brand’s message to their target audience and engage with them. While the thought of expanding your social media presence may seem a little daunting at first with all the various platforms available, it’s not necessary to establish a foothold in every single one of them. You can begin by conducting some market research to find out which social media platforms your target audience spends the most time on and develop your social media marketing strategy from there. Tapping on the insights captured during our Enterprise Development Grant (EDG) Strategic Branding and Marketing Project, we have helped one of our B2B clients achieve up to 10% month-on-month number of followers through our social media management organic initiative.
✅ Invest in Performance Marketing & Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Oftentimes, the role that Performance Marketing plays in a business’ success is undermined. However, investing in Search Engine Marketing (SEM) efforts such as paid ads on Google is pivotal in expanding your reach and maximising return on ad spend. Our Performance Marketing Analysts ensure that we develop a compelling strategy and execute high performance Google Ads campaigns for our clients against a well researched keyword analysis and establishing a detailed, foolproof media plan. On the other hand, SEO aims to increase your visibility through organic means. It’s not just about adding a list of relevant keywords to your site, but also involves several technicalities, site architecture and navigation, image alt tags and optimisation. While this strategy requires a gargantuan amount of time and effort, the long term value that you’ll reap from it is invaluable.
VK Transformation has extensive experience in helping B2B and B2C businesses embark on their digital transformation and business model innovation journey through our digital transformation consulting services for SMEs and large enterprises. If you’re interested to find out more, please feel free to connect with us and request for a complimentary website audit here: https://www.vktransformation.com/strategic-consulting
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