4 Reasons For An Online Quilt Store & How To Start One


What are the benefits of an online store and do you need to get one?

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4 Reasons For An Online Quilt Store & How To Start One

In a world tilting toward the virtual, brick and mortar quilting stores can face challenges to their survival. It's not all doom and gloom though. The virtual world is also full of opportunity.


The Internet offers us a new way to expand physical stores and reach a wider audience. Stretching beyond the boundary of travel times and your neighborhood, to international acclaim.

4 Reasons For An Online Quilt Store & How To Start One


When optinmonster.com analyzed online shopping statistics back in January 2020, they found some interesting results. It was estimated there are likely to be 300 Million Americans shopping online by 2023. (Source 1 below)


That's a lot of people and these findings predate the current pandemic! With social distancing in force across the country, many people are utilizing Internet shopping to avoid going out. This means there are even more people purchasing online than ever before.


Like many brick and mortar stores, quilting outlets have been hit hard by the lack of foot traffic. Some have even been forced to close temporarily due to not being an essential business. The closures, no matter how long, will be devastating to businesses up and down the nation.


There is a way to counteract the loss of revenue and to continue to trade even in periods of State lockdown.


You need to join the 300 million Americans and get yourself online.


Here are 4 very good reasons why you should grab the Internet by the horns and get yourself an online presence.



Larger Geographical Sales Area

Quilting is a niche market. Not everyone in your local area quilts or needs the products stocked in a quilting store. By not having an online presence you are impacting the potential size of your clientele, to the detriment of your business.


Local quilting stores supporting the needs of quilters living in the area can be lucrative, up to a point. The main drawback is quilters tend to stock up on supplies. They squirrel away fat quarters and quilting yardage, creating a stash of fabric and notions. A treasure trove of supplies that can last for months. Now, your customers might not all stop shopping at the same time. But, you may find a significant portion of your income disappears for weeks on end, leaving you with a lull in trading and a shortfall in your income.


Taking your quilt store online will give you access to a whole new audience. No longer limited to your local neighborhood, you can reach people interested in quilting from all over the country. Even from around the globe. As well as stocking staples that you know your walk-in customers are interested in, you can expand your inventory to include special items that have a wider appeal to a larger audience.


Better still, expanding the reach of your business by tapping into the power of the Internet will increase your potential client base. This in turn will increase your sales giving you a steadier, stash-beating income stream.



Trading On A Level Playing Field

The Internet is a great equalizer when it comes to shopping. Whether the online website is a small Mom-and-Pop partnership or backed by a nationwide franchise makes no difference. This is one instance when size doesn't matter.


Competing with the big box stores out in the real world can be an exercise in futility. Most of the time smaller quilting stores are only just getting by. Things are very different in the virtual trading world of the Internet. In digital land, all business is created equal.


What matters online is excellent customer service backed by a user friendly, easy to navigate website. Combine your top quality goods and services with reasonable shipping, and you'll soon attract customers to your online store. Give them exceptional value for money, they'll keep coming back.


A fully functional and attractive website is attainable by any quilting business. Not just the big name franchises. The Internet is the only place where you can compete on a level playing field.


Another plus; the more activity you have online the more business awareness you will develop. Suddenly, customers who never knew your quilting store was in their neighborhood will be walking through your door.


An online presence doesn't just expand your potential income stream across the Internet. It also improves the revenue you can make in your physical quilt store.


Opening Hours To Suit Your Customers

According to a survey back in 2018 carried out by NPR.org, 86% of shoppers like to do so online because of the ability to shop whenever it suited them. (Source 2 below)


Being online will enable you to serve customers even when your actual quilting store is closed. This ability to fulfill orders 24/7 can increase your sales and improve your bottom line.

Shopping Cart


Not only that, an online quilting store will allow you to overcome restrictions like social distancing or an imposed, Statewide lockdown.


In fact, having an online store will remove all possible barriers to trading caused by any disaster. Roads blocked by snow? Local highways flooded and closed? Continuing pandemic causing further time in quarantine? No problem. You'll still be able to serve your customers by taking your business online.


Without any loss in your revenue.


Better Awareness of Best Sellers

In a walk-in store, you can normally tell which items aren't selling well. They'll be the products sitting on the shelves untouched. The one thing you can't tell is why.


It could be price, color, or design. Even the location within your store can have an impact on what things sell and what doesn't. Customers are fickle. If your potential customers are rushed they won't have the time to rummage, and will shelf-skim instead. They'll rely on eye catching colors to make them stop their busy day and pause. The slightest little mismatch of lighting or lack of space will halt this "browsing" in its tracks; making the difference between a sale or a walk away.


With an online store, you can showcase your inventory at its best. Browsing becomes easier for your prospective clients. Undeterred by the restrictions caused by available lighting, space and time, customers can sift through your online store from the comfort of their own home. At their leisure. With a more relaxed shopping experience, they'll be more likely to stop, look and purchase.


Now you know why you should be online, how do you go about getting there?


Register Your Domain Name

The first thing you need to do is register a domain name. Ideally, this should be your business name. Keeping the same name will build your brand awareness and give a link to your physical quilting store.



Create a Website

Next, create a website. Make sure it is eCommerce ready. That means it has the capacity to allow online orders and accept online payments.


Don't worry if you're not a computer tech expert. You can find website making software online that you can use to build your site. The software should have plenty of templates to choose from to help you make your website eye-catching and functional. Alternatively, contact a website designer in your area who can build you a site from scratch.



Personalize Your Website

Add your business address, email and telephone number. Even though this is an online store, people like to see you exist in the real world. Especially if they need to contact you for more information.


Make sure you add your full inventory with high quality images. Decide on which forms of online payment you will accept. Will it just be credit and debit cards, or will you take Paypal too? Figure out how much to charge for packing and shipping.


It is a good idea to have a FAQs page where your customers can find answers to frequently asked questions such as cost of shipping or how long delivery takes.


Market Your Website

Once your site is up and running, the next thing you need to do for your new online quilting store is, set up a marketing campaign to promote it. It is as important as setting up the website itself. Without marketing, no one will know it is there.


Many options exist to get noticed, but your most cost effective option is to appear on the Online Quilt Shop List. Being where quilters look will help you reach the top position in searches faster.

Online Quilt Shop List



Source 1



Source 2



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