Does your vape shop already have as many customers as it could possibly handle? Unless you can honestly say that you don’t want or need more customers, your vape shop needs a website. Having a website is one of the least expensive ways to promote a business. It gives customers the ability to learn more about your vape shop before visiting. It helps you capture customer information so you can re-engage people if they haven’t visited in a while. Best of all, having a website only costs about $60 per year. Are you still not convinced that your vape shop needs a website? Allow us to explain.
Headline image courtesy of A2Hosting.
Starting a Website Is Easy
If you aren’t particularly fond of technology, starting a vape shop website may seem like a challenging proposition. Actually, though, you only need three things:
- A domain. eCigOne.com is our domain, for example.
- A hosting company. The hosting company owns the servers that store your website’s data and serve it to the people who want to view your website. We use A2Hosting, and we have been very happy with our experience. A2Hosting starts at $3.92 per month. You can register your vape shop’s domain there as well.
- A content management system. Your CMS contains the template that determines what your website looks like. It organizes all of your pages, blog posts, images and other content. It also provides the interface that allows you to add new content. We use WordPress. WordPress is free, very powerful, quite popular and constantly updated. WordPress’s interface is entirely visual, so you don’t need to know anything about programing to use it. A2Hosting will even install it on your server for you. If you can use Microsoft Word or any other word processor, you can use WordPress.
You can actually have a fully functional website in about 30 minutes or less. Just add content!
Allow People to Browse Your Selection
It’s likely that you used e-cigarettes before you ever considered opening a vape shop. When you bought your first e-cigarette, you may have done so simply by walking into a vape shop and asking questions. Once you gained experience, though, you began to realize how many different e-cigarettes, e-liquids, tanks and other vaping-related items are out there. There are thousands of different e-cigarette products on the market now.
If you already know what interests you, wouldn’t you like to have an idea of what a vape shop carries before you visit it? Having a website allows you to do exactly that for your customers. A website is always open and always ready to tell your potential customers why they should take the time to visit your vape shop.
Control Your Vape Shop’s Online Reputation
Don’t you wish that you could control what people say about your vape shop online? Well, you can’t — but you can control what people see to a certain extent simply by controlling as many search results on Google as you can. It’s wise to claim or create listings for your vape shop on all of the popular business directories. You should also create social media profiles for your vape shop. You’re missing out on the full benefit, though, if you don’t create a vape shop website as well. You can use all of your listings and profiles to link to your website — and your vape shop’s website is the only place online where you can control what people read about your business.
Now, let’s suppose that someone says something negative about your vape shop on a blog or forum. You have a website, though, along with multiple business directory listings and social media profiles. You own so many of the search results on Google’s first page, in fact, that the negative comment appears on the second page of Google’s results when someone searches for your vape shop. Research suggests that 94 out of 100 people who search for your vape shop online will never see the negative comment.
Improve Your Vape Shop’s Search Engine Optimization
According to SocialTimes, 81 percent of consumers research products online before buying. If your vape shop doesn’t presently have a website, it’s possible that your customers find you through a business directory such as Yelp. When a customer reads your vape shop’s Yelp profile, though, he or she isn’t getting the story from you. Instead, your story comes from the reviews posted by previous customers. Wouldn’t you prefer that your customers get the story from you?
If your vape shop is so new that it doesn’t even have a Yelp listing, then it may not appear on Google’s search results pages at all. Starting a website is an excellent first step toward getting attention online.
Give Your Vape Shop a Professional Image
If you want to look like a real business in the eyes of your potential customers, you need a website. It’s what your customers expect. People may increasingly use business directories such as Yelp and Google Maps to find local businesses, but they’re still going to click through to a business’s website if they want to know more. Having a website lets those people know that you’re serious about attracting customers and gives them an avenue for further research before they visit your store.
Have you ever considered getting a small business loan from your local bank or an online provider such as Kabbage? The lender is going to want to see your business’s website. They’re also going to want an email address that ends in “mydomain.com” — not “gmail.com.” If you want to look like a professional, you need a website.
Inform and Educate Your Customers
If you own a vape shop, you know more than the majority of your customers about how to choose the right e-cigarette, set it up and use it safely to avoid an e-cigarette explosion. A website gives you the ability to inform your customers and answer common questions before people enter your store. When customers do visit you after reading your articles online, you won’t need to spend as much time explaining. Instead, you can spend more time selling.
A website also gives you an opportunity to build a mailing list and keep your customers informed about sales and new products.
Create an Opportunity for Online Sales
You may have no current plans to sell products online, but your situation might change as your vape shop becomes more successful and you begin to look for expansion opportunities. If you start your website now, you can begin attracting inbound links and improving your search engine rankings immediately. When you begin selling products online, your website will already have some authority on Google. If you wait to start a website until you’re ready to sell products online, you’ll have to wait much longer before begin making sales. Shopify is a simple shopping cart platform that integrates easily with WordPress.
Promote Your Vape Shop Inexpensively
You can get web hosting for less than $50 per year — and a domain name costs about $10 yearly. That’s a total of only about $60 yearly to have a website for your vape shop. A website is available to promote your vape shop, display your product selection and answer customers’ questions 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Can you think of a more inexpensive way to promote your business? Having a website is such a small expense that there are really no excuses for not having one.