Online ShoppingEarlier today, Brian Dunn resigned from his position as CEO of Best Buy.  This is just one of many, albeit, more drastic examples of the company’s recent troubles.  However, Best Buy is not the first major electronics retailer to face such hardship.  The company’s former competitor, Circuit City, met its demise in 2009 after failing to adapt to a changing marketplace and suffering diminishing revenues.  Best Buy is actively pursuing a new strategy in order to stay in business, including the replacement of several large brick-and-mortar locations with smaller “mobile” stores.  However, many analysts believe that Best Buy’s greatest hope for success may be their online division.

Today, millions of consumers are using the Web to shop.  E-Commerce is on the rise and that trend is expected to continue.  For Best Buy, or any other retailer, an online storefront and an Internet marketing campaign are an absolute necessity.  However, once that presence is established, it is crucial to maintain it properly to allow for maximum gains and achieve the most success.  The following is a list of five strategies that online retailers should utilize to see the best results:

1. Optimize
While search engine optimization has yielded results for many companies’ websites, it can also be effectively used to promote online stores, as well.  It is important to take advantage of the benefits of SEO when designing and updating storefronts.  HTML code, keywords and backlinks are all factors to consider.

2. Socialize
The social media trend is impossible for anyone with an Internet connection to ignore.  Sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are as prevalent as ever before and are a great way to market products and services to virtually any target audience.

3. Simplify
Every Web store should be easy for shoppers to understand and navigate.  Storefronts should be simple and straightforward to be accessible to as many customers as possible.

4. Mobilize
E-Commerce revenues increased in 2011 and a large percentage of that increase was due to mobile device sales.  If a store isn’t available on mobile platforms, quite simply, it is missing out on valuable business.

5. Advertise
For retailers with brick-and-mortar locations, it is very important to inform shoppers of online functionality.  An online storefront provides versatility and should be heavily promoted to increase potential profits.

Virtually every company can benefit from these principles and should not hesitate to capitalize on the success that E-Commerce can provide.  As shoppers continue to buy online, the value of a properly maintained and well-marketed Internet storefront will become even more apparent for businesses throughout the world.