How to attract new customers and increase online sales

How to attract new customers and increase online sales
Nov 12, 2021
Tosin Baruwa

Your business idea is perfect, and you've done all the work of setting it up, but now it's time to obtain more customers and increase sales.

Even in the best of times, one consistent challenge small businesses face is attracting new customers. In the not too distant past, small businesses had different challenges to overcome, such as attracting new customers as well as keeping their existing clients. However, in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, small businesses not only struggle with attracting new customers, they are also faced with the problem of losing their existing customers. Several policies such as curbside pickup, limited capacity due to social distancing, reduced business hours, and mandatory lockdowns resulted in lost revenue and customers.

Many small businesses were forced to go online to cope with the new situation. One of the most popular platforms used is Shopify. While Shopify allowed small businesses to set up shop online quickly, its main disadvantage was that, without a strategic marketing strategy, it did little to increase sales or attract new customers. Due to the pace of these changes, small businesses were not able to gradually integrate themselves into the online market. Rather, they ended up exploring different trial and error methods to generate more sales.

Ultimatly, you need to be provided with valuable information that has ben tested in order to attract new customers. Here's what we will be discussing; tried and tested ways to attract new customers.


Grow your brand awareness

First of all, what is brand awareness? An easy way to think about brand awareness is how much a customer recognizes your brand. People are more likely to buy from brands that they are already familiar with, so increasing your brand awareness over time will lead to an increase in your sales. Now that you know what brand awareness is, the next step is to increase your brand awareness. A great way to grow your brand awareness is integrating your Shopify store with another online marketplace. The key is to look for a marketplace that caters to small businesses. This gives you an advantage because your brand awareness would no longer solely depend on your marketing campaigns. Now, it will also improve with the marketplace's success.  As the marketplace gets more foot traffic, it automatically directs more customers to your products, increasing your business visibility.

Another way to grow your brand awareness is by having a good social media presence. Unfortunately, this is quite time-consuming as it requires a great deal of planning and execution.  Posting quality content is not your only objective; you also need to increase engagement on your content. This is such an essential task that larger companies often hire a social media specialist to handle this. But as a small business, you're probably running on a tighter budget and can't afford to hire an employee only to manage your social media pages. An alternative that you can opt for is looking for qualified volunteers who are looking to gain real work experience; this is a win-win situation for both parties. The only caveat to this is that because they are volunteers, you can't be too demanding of them, and you can't expect long-term commitment from them. You can often find qualified volunteers at nearby Colleges and Universities. Another option you can explore is finding a marketplace that features vendors' content on their social media page. This is another win-win situation because you provide them with quality content for their posts while getting increased exposure, thus growing your brand awareness.


Multi-stream online sales strategy

There is a growing gap between small businesses and big box stores. While many small businesses fought to stay afloat, big-box stores earned record profits. With the shift to a digital economy, it is more important than ever for your small business to develop a multi-stream online sales strategy so you can sell to your loyal customers directly through your Shopify store while also attracting new customers elsewhere.

Many small businesses are getting by with a Shopify store. You shouldn't be settling for just getting by when there is an opportunity for you to increase your sales revenue and grow your business without having to go through the process of setting up another online store.

The question then arises, where is this opportunity, and how do I find it? There are some new emerging online marketplaces that offer you the opportunity to generate multi-stream eCommerce revenue. All that is required of you is a little research to find one that fits your needs. Ideally, you want one that can upload your Shopify store's inventory within minutes and open your business up to a larger local audience.


Competing with larger Competitors

of online shoppers prefer shopping at large online retail stores over small niche retail businesses. This statistic may appear alarming at first glance, but a closer examination can help you better comprehend and capitalize on this data.

Essentially, online shopping simulates the in-person experience, and the fact is that bigger competitors are able to provide customers with exactly the same experience. Consumers can benefit from the convenience offered by online big-box stores; they are one-stop shopping destinations. Online big-box stores offer consumers virtually everything they need without having to leave their websites.

Here are some tips on how to make the most of an unpleasant situation. Research a local online marketplace that you can become affiliated with, like OptLocal. Local marketplaces should give you the ability to compete with the big-box stores for customers who prefer a one-stop shopping experience by providing them with a way to find everything they need across different local businesses. This local online marketplace allows consumers to discover and shop for your products while also increasing your brand awareness within a local consumer demographic.


Time Management

Most small businesses are already preoccupied with the day-to-day activities of their store; adding an online interface only increases your workload. Administrative tasks like inventory management, customer returns, customer billing, and marketing are simultaneously taking place on two separate fronts. It is quite difficult to manage all this as well as generate more sales and acquire more customers. However, with OptLocal, all your online administrative tasks will be taken care of, as well as your marketing and customer relations, giving you more time to spend on other aspects of your business. With OptLocal you can track your sales in your vendor panel, allowing you to track your online sales growth easily. You also get email notifications when your products are product sold, so you can stay on top of your new orders.


The average small business is already overburdened with the daily activities of their store; adding an online interface will only increase your workload. Inventory management, customer returns, customer billing, and marketing are all occurring simultaneously on two separate fronts. The challenge is to manage all this as well as to increase sales and acquire more customers. With OptLocal, all your online administrative tasks, as well as your marketing and customer service, will be taken care of, leaving you more time to devote to other parts of your business. OptLocal allows you to track your sales in your vendor panel, making it easy to monitor your online sales growth. In addition, you will receive email notifications whenever your product is sold, so you can stay on top of your sales.


Many business owners feel overwhelmed by the digital transformation. Let us deal with attracting the customer; the customers who shop for your products in-stores are not necessarily the same as those who shop online. Leave your online growth to us since we specialize in eCommerce; we only make money if you are successful. Managing your advertisements can also be time-consuming. Our advertisements are designed to attract high-potential customers. Let us attract the customers and leave the product listing details to the experts (you). After all, you know your niche best. To consistently place your products in front of a large local audience, we drive both organic and paid traffic to the marketplace. We choose to market exclusively to local customers. This will increase the likelihood that the customer will purchase from your store in the future, leading to a new loyal customer. Whenever we add a new seller to our marketplace, we inject new local customers through increased product offerings for search engine rankings resulting in a customer networking effect. If you want to promote your products to even more customers, OptLocal offers a variety of on-site advertising services available exclusively to their members.


How it works

 When a product is purchased through OptLocal, you will receive an email notification containing a list of products sold. You simply print the packing form and shipping label from your vendor panel and prepare the order for pickup. It's that easy. You can schedule a pickup through Canada post or drop off the parcel at your nearest Canada Post location. Furthermore, when a sale is made through OptLocal, we automatically adjust your Shopify inventory, so you only have to manage one inventory system. 

Start selling to your new loyal customers. Join our growing list of sellers and access our network of local customers. Your unique products act as the selling point in the online marketplace; this gives customers a greater variety of products to choose from in both quality and quantity.

With the help of OptLocal, small businesses have access to a community of local shoppers waiting to discover their business, and most importantly, you can easily increase their online sales while attracting new customers.




Tosin Baruwa




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