One of the biggest challenges for businesses is creating the same experience online as that provided to in-store customers. Check out these tips for managing your online customer experience.
If you have a physical store, chances you are you also have an online presence.
For Steve Rider, founder of Mybottleshop.com.au, something drew him towards selling his physical business and moving completely online.
“When I came out of uni, I went in and started an e-commerce software company,” explains Steve on the My Business Podcast.
“My background's always been on the software side, but my passion has always been for drinks, for hospitality.
“I travelled a lot around the world, actually on conferences for my work, but I had to spend three days at the software conference and the other 10 days was visiting breweries and wineries and distilleries on a Harley-Davidson.”
In Steve’s travels, he discovered a wealth of unique brands that did not have the distribution channels they deserved.
“I could see that the product they were making; it was vastly superior to what was available on the supermarket shelves here in Australia,” he says.
Then in 2007, Steve opened a bar to provide the unique products he wanted people to experience.
“These were products, a lot of products that people never heard of. We had a beer on tap that was made from a local brewery; people's eyes were popping out when we had the cocktail list,” he says.
“People were going, ‘Wow, this stuff tastes great. It's something I haven't seen in my local liquor store, it's something totally different. I really want to experience this product’. But they wanted to experience it in their home.”
The idea of bringing these offerings to customers became so successful that Steve sold his existing software business and took the basis of his bar even further by starting Mybottleshop.com.au, a website offering unique drink-based products, to widen the distribution channels even more through delivery options.
“You'll see on all our taglines it says, ‘Australia's number one drink shop’; it's about the drinks,” explains Steve.
“The drinks is more than just alcohol. It's more than just that product that's in that bottle. It's about the glassware that you put the product into, it's about the mixer, it's how you shake the cocktail, what components you use there to make up the cocktail.”
By combining a wide range of products, delivery, and the ability to access these products anywhere, Steve feels like he has brought the customer experience from a bar to a digital storefront, and then into the households of his customers.
“What we're finding [is that] more and more people are going online, accessorising their drinks, and we call it the show-off factor. A lot of people now, it's the MasterChef of drinks. They've got the kitchen, they know how to cook, they can impress their friends, and now they're moving into the bar scene.”