Ecommerce marketing has played a big role in the global economy throughout the lockdown. In terms of local economies, it is equally important. Many traditional brick and mortar stores have been forced to close or consider alternate options to keep selling. Online stores have become a viable way to keep selling, without the high overheads and challenges faced by traditional stores. Many people have turned to ecommerce as a way to seek new opportunities, starting small stores as a way to bring in new business.

As the ecommerce industry continues to grow, during the lockdown and beyond, there is no doubt that ecommerce marketing is going to greatly help local economies here within South Africa. In this article, we share some of the ways that ecommerce will help South African businesses in the retail sector.

Ecommerce Marketing and Local Economies

Without ecommerce marketing, selling online is virtually impossible. Although you may get some sales and you may get some referrals from friends and family, you will not have the ability to reach your target customer. Marketing your online store on a local level includes numerous strategies, from local SEO to social media marketing, search marketing, mobile marketing, and email marketing. An integrated strategy will not only help you grow your store; it will also help you support the local South African economy as the demand for online shopping continues to grow. There are a few ways that ecommerce in itself helps to boost the economy on a local scale, including the following:

Supporting local online stores

Rather than supporting large, multi-national or global online stores, many consumers are choosing to support local online stores instead. Most local stores are more accessible, with faster delivery and many other advantages. South African consumers are making more effort than ever to help smaller businesses. The spirit of giving back and helping fellow businesses has been one of the few good things to come out of the lockdown. Many customers are shopping local, choosing stores that also provide a more personalised shopping experience than larger stores. Taking advantage of this through tailored campaigns designed to drive loyalty and reach customers on a more intimate level is essential to increase support for local stores.

Bridging the online/offline gap

The gap between online and offline shopping has been growing for a while – long before COVID-19 arrived. Lockdown has amplified the need for click and mortar shopping, allowing customers more ways to shop. Many retail chains and stand-alone stores have turned to ecommerce as a way to continue to bring in sales. Now that lockdown restrictions have begun to ease, the online/offline shopping experience still adds value to customers. Locally, strategies such as click and collect, exclusive offers designed for online and in-store products and various others have been a success.

Providing new opportunities

Finally, the ecommerce industry has given rise to many new opportunities. Due to job losses and other major challenges, people are looking at new ways to bring in income. Many new stores have been opened by those wanting to harness the opportunities provided by online selling. This has led to job creation along with several other benefits.

Ecommerce Marketing Growth

The ecommerce industry is evolving every single day. New stores are opening, more retailers are adding online stores to their retail outlets. The opportunity for growth is certainly massive. With a comprehensive strategy in place, ecommerce marketing offers a surprisingly simple, highly effective way to boost local economies.

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