So you want to grow your online business by branching out with a new store. Where do you begin? Since there’s no point in setting up a new store (i.e. adding a MoreStore to your MSx cart) just to sell the same things to the same people, you’ll need to start off by defining a new target market. That means you’ll need to find a new group of people to sell your products to. This new group could be a segment of your existing customer base and the products could be a subset of your existing products. That approach is probably a good strategy because it may require less work and have a better chance at success. Focusing on a smaller segment, or niche audience, also has the advantage of encountering less competition.
Consider Demographics When Selecting a New Target Market
You will want to select a new target market that is viable for your business. First you should understand your existing customers well so that you can accurately identify sub segments. To do this, you might consider how your audience breaks down along the lines of gender, age, ethnicity, geography, income, marital status, family size, occupation, lifestyle, education, etc. There might be some obvious divisions that quickly point to one or more new groups who will be interested in buying your products. If these groups have common needs and desire benefits which are similar, you can capitalize on your familiarity with your existing customers and simply hone in on a more focused marketing message.
You can also define a new target market by thinking about the various ways in which your products reach the consumer. For example, if you sell your products in a retail environment, you might think about selling them wholesale as well, or to distributors. You could also sell overstock or imperfect items in a discount store.
Your Sales Could Point You in the Right Direction
Another strategy for determining a viable new market might be to look at your sales. What items do you sell the most of? Is there a way you can branch out with a handful of popular items, just by attaching a new message to them? Do you have a few high-dollar items that could attract new kinds of customers? What about customer requests? Do you ever get requests for products you don’t carry and could you start selling those in a new store?
Whatever ideas you come up with, be sure to evaluate each new market segment in terms of its size, growth rate and sales potential. What kind of competition is out there and is there any brand loyalty you can take advantage of? Keep in mind that you must be able to attain some kind of market share in order to be successful. Determine how much you need to sell to cover costs and be realistic about your expectations for growth. And once you have your strategy in place, set up a MoreStore for each new target audience and then focus your message as narrowly as you can to ensure that you attract only those customers who are interested in what you are selling. If you do that well, your chances of converting shoppers into buyers will be much better.
Remember, if you have a great strategy and you’ve already set up a MoreStore, then be sure to enter it into our MoreStore contest for a chance to win $3,000. We are accepting entries through August 7th and the winner will be announced on August 14th. You can find more details here.