Digital Sales Vs Traditional Sales

Ireland Together’s advisor Eva Acton approaches the differences between digital and traditional sales 

The sales model/process we have known until earlier this year was undergoing a slow revolution in its move to a digital platform. Some businesses were further along this path than others when the closure happened in March. However, the digitalisation of business has now been accelerated and though particularly obvious in retail, all businesses are impacted.

In small business we may be guilty of thinking that its all about the online purchase, the end goal, so to speak. Getting an e-commerce web site is the goal and once we have achieved that all will be good, right? ….eh…No!

So, what is this digitalisation and “new world order” about if it is not about setting up a web site and getting sales?

Well, I find it easy to use a comparison between customer journeys in the Traditional world Vs the Digital world.

If we think of the purchase as the end goal we still need to make customers AWARE of our products, get them to CONSIDER our products, encourage them to buy our products and finally make the conditions right for a PURCHASE.

AWARENESS: The customer is looking for a solution to a problem.

Awareness in the traditional world was achieved by networking, advertising (Print, TV, Radio), shop front appeal, word of mouth, business cards, web sites etc.

Awareness in the digital world revolves around having a presence on the social media platforms, using influencers, building your brand, and showing your relevance to your marketplace.

CONSIDERATION: The customer has decided to buy, but who will they buy from?

In the traditional world this research was done by asking friends, phoning, or visiting the store or visiting the web site.

In the digital world it is done by reading on-line reviews, receiving Social Media branded messages, receiving targeted offers on-line (based on earlier searches) etc.

CONVERSION: The customer is ready to buy from you.

In the traditional world, the customer buys from your web site, in store or over the phone.

In the digital world, purchases are also done on-line, from your web site directly or an e-commerce website like Amazon. However, a well-designed Google Ad with good keywords can seal the deal. Let us say your Google Ad acts as the best sales closer in your store and keywords act as the receptionist that introduces the customer to them.

Critical to success in the digital world is that you know who your customer is. Because in the digital world you are reaching out to them to draw them to you. In the traditional world customers found you when they needed you.

There is a defined process to the sales cycle in the digital world just like there is in the real world. Without a defined strategy, using clear customer profiles and an appropriate marketing campaign you may be wasting your precious resources in the digital world.

In real life the best companies operate the traditional and the digital strategies in tandem, with complimentary strategies that reinforce the message to the customer.

If you are feeling frazzled with unanswered questions about the new online and offline Sales world? I can help you design a sales strategy helping you to build easy actions into your day which will lead to increased sales and build relationships with current and new customers.

Connect with Eva Acton on LinkedIn