Greta Rose Agency

If you are like most of my clients, you love your brick and mortar store, but hate managing your website.

You love your shop (or office), rightly so, as if it were a member of your family. It’s a living, breathing entity, filled with joy, laughter, memories of the blood, sweat and tears from a lifetime of making everything perfect. There isn’t a single speck of dust that you didn’t place intentionally, and you are filled with pride and inspiration as you tackle each day – no matter what challenges you may face. Because it’s your business and you can stand inside of it and feel it underneath your feet.

[az_alert_box_sh class=”” mode=”error”]What if I told you that your website is EXACTLY like a brick & mortar store? And not just any store, … but like the coolest, cutest, most badass, dream shop you can possibly imagine! Making this shift in context and perspective has made a HUGE difference to my clients, so I bet it will help you, too.[/az_alert_box_sh]

Just bringing up the idea of managing your own shop makes your eyes light up. No matter how hard it might be, the dream is alive and well and has a physical presence that is all your own. The daily grind makes sense to you. You know every component of your business – from the utility bills, the vendor A/Ps, the backroom security alarm, the cash register, the SKUs, the spare lightbulbs… You know your store inside and out.

On the other hand, you treat your website as an object, a thing, some alien species. You may have spent a fortune on building it, only to file it “away” when it’s done figuring (hoping) it will just run itself. While you know you are supposed to “do something” with your website, you may feel anything but enthusiastic about it. Blogging, social media, SEO, Google Analytics…. these all land like bad words, or chores, or scary obligations no one really wants to take on. I can almost feel the weight of the burden!

The idea of managing your website doesn’t make sense to you. You don’t know how to relate or interact with your website, so it feels foreign, new, overwhelming. ECommerce is enough to make you feel like you don’t know anything at all!

But, you do. You really do.

Your website is EXACTLY like a brick & mortar store, it just happens to have a virtual address. And the best part is that it’s not just any store, … because you aren’t limited by physical realities (like rent). Your vision can explode with imagination. Your online website can be the coolest store EVER.

Read this article and see if I can’t make you fall in love with your website just a little, shall we?

Here are just 3 examples of how your website is exactly like your brick and mortar:

The Entrance


Your Brick & Mortar:

Present a clean, inviting welcome. Have a display window presenting your best featured items in a cool, artistic and eye-catching way. You’ve thought about the lighting, and made sure to remove any clutter. Either you, or a trained and friendly employee welcome guests with just the right amount of helpfulness. You might even have some cider and cookies for a special treat. The guest walks in feeling curious and intrigued, free to explore, knowing where to find you to ask any questions or to purchase something they want to buy.

Managing Your Website:

The landing page should feel equally welcoming and clear of clutter. Your best and featured items should be presented in a visually compelling way that compliments your physical brand. The website should look like the brick and mortar! Same colors, same fonts, same products. It should be easy to buy, ask questions, or roam around. You might even welcome the guest with a special treat (a discount or online special).

The Floor Plan

Greta Rose Agency

Your Brick & Mortar:

You’ve taken some time to think about how a guest makes their way through your store. You don’t let a guest see any clutter. Changing rooms in the back. Items are grouped together in a way that makes sense. Racks are spaced out so a guest feels comfortable. You display featured items throughout your store to catch the guest’s eye, or show examples of your products “in action.” You keep an eye throughout the store, constantly neatening up for the next guest and politely checking on the guest respectfully, so they know you’re available to help (without being annoying).

Managing Your Website:

You’ve taken great care to think about how your guests might navigate your menu. Place items into categories that make sense. Design your website to feel roomy and spacious, utilizing white space and beautiful images so it doesn’t feel cluttered. It should always be easy for a guest to find you, ask a question, contact you, or buy an item. Go through your website regularly to make sure everything looks right, works properly, links are correct, and nothing is broken. Communicate with your online guests just the right amount so they feel respected and part of the community.

The Exit


Your Brick & Mortar:

This is the lasting impression, which forms your reputation. If the guest found an item to buy, the purchase experience should feel luxurious and special. The financial transaction is easy – almost invisible. The item is wrapped like a gift, and perhaps you add a celebratory tissue, bow, sticker, or custom bag. You celebrate the purchase with your guest, thanking them. Ideally, you hear them telling their friend or companion as they leave, “That was the coolest store!” You know your reputation depends on your guests telling others in your community how great you are.

Managing Your Website:

How your guest leaves your website is just as important as how they leave your store, if not more so, because you need the guest to feel you are right there with them. The guest’s purchase should be incredibly easy, secure, seamless, and should feel celebratory and ceremonial. The guest who pokes around and doesn’t purchase anything, still wants to feel like you’re happy they stopped by, and encouraged to tell a friend how great their experience was, and you look forward to seeing them again soon!


Greta Rose Agency

No matter the size of your business – by applying the same rules of great customer experience to your website as you do within your brick and mortar store, you can confidently answer some basic questions about managing first impression, navigation, last impression, and general layout. Even if you don’t have a brick and mortar of your own, imagine yourself the guest of your own beautiful establishment.

[az_alert_box_sh class=”” mode=”error”]TRY THIS: Go for a field trip and check out some of your favorite brick and mortar shops. Study them, revel in what you love about them. Take notes. Do the same online! Meander to your favorite online sites and study what you love about their websites (or take note about what you’d do better!!), and then…. you guessed it…. apply these gems to your own website![/az_alert_box_sh]

Managing your website is not reinventing the wheel of commerce, and great online customer experience is “virtually” the same as real-life customer experience. Take your time, use what you know, and bring back that enthusiasm and joy you have, so that you can love your website just as much as any other part of your online business. It wants to be a part of your family, too!

Go have a blast managing your website!



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