There seems to be a certain attitude in the modern era that a successful business is one that exists entirely online. As though classic, brick and mortar businesses no longer have a place in the modern world. Now, there are convincing arguments for this, but the truth is that it's less about offline businesses disappearing and more about them needing to move forward with the times in order to survive. There is still very much a market for stores on the high street and physical businesses, but if you're not able to offer customers the kind of services that they've grown used to, then you're never going to be able to compete. With that in mind, here are some things that you can do in order to bring your business into the 21st century.
Point of sale
Customers have always hated having to wait for things, but for a long time, they understood that they didn't really have much of a choice in the matter. However, since the dawn of the internet age, people have become less and less willing to wait for anything. When you can get anything you want delivered to your door with the click of a button, the idea of standing in line for something seems ridiculous. Because of that, you need to update your point of sale system. Things like a portable credit card reader that you can use anywhere in the store can make life a whole lot easier. That way customers don't have to stand in line at the register. Buy updating your point of sale system; you're going to make things much more convenient for both your customers and your business.
Of course, just because you're focusing on your business's physical side, that doesn't mean there aren't ways that you can use the internet to supplement it. If you've got things like offers in-store or events, using social media to promote them is one of the best things that you can do. Not only that but you're able to use to social media to talk to the customers that you would previously have only interacted with in your store, cementing their emotional connection to your business as easily as possible.
One of the biggest mistakes that a lot of business owners make is that they neglect the presentation of their business. Sure, they make sure the place is clean and tidy, but the truth is that they don't pay nearly enough attention to how modern trends are changing and whether or not the design of their premises will actually make customers want to talk through the door. Make sure that you keep an eye on new design ideas cropping up and don't be afraid to embrace them as part of your business.
Of course, if you really want your business to succeed then the very best thing that you can do is to find a balance between the online and offline aspects of it. Being able to run a successful business on both the high street and on the internet will allow you to cover all possible markets and really get ahead of the competition.
Walter G. is a software engineer with over 10 years of professional experience. When he isn't blogging or being a CTO he enjoys coding randomly complex things that he hopes many people will get a chance to use one day.