In this Episode: Where we Went, and Where we’re Going (and how you can best prepare!)
We covered a whole host of topics this year, from omni-channel — the idea of selling your products directly on your own store, plus platforms like Facebook and Instagram — to performance, security, and effectively selling.
We’ve extolled the virtues of being where your customers already are… which is the point of omni-channel: bring your products to the people. Before 2021, this was a difficult take and most store owners weren’t equipped to deliver such features. But that has gotten a lot easier with WooCommerce plugins and Plesk’s eCommerce Toolkit.
Brian talked about (and Joe agreed) how omni-channel definitely works well for people who sell physical products. When you do get people to your store, you need to make sure it’s fast and secure. Tools like Google’s Core Web Vitals can help with the speed part. They’ll run your store through a number of tests and recommend optimizations.
From a security standpoint, you should at the very least have SSL and a payment gateway, which Chris Tietzel told us all about. We even got a deep dive on Payment Gateways from EVO Payments.
When speaking about this, Brian and Joe discussed the benefit of using software vs. writing software. Since they’re both developers, they can get things launched pretty quickly. But they both admitted that a payment gateway is one thing they don’t want to touch!
As Brian and Joe have well-established online stores, they both implemented some of what Jason Coleman taught in the Black Friday / Cyber Monday episode, to great success. The lessons here were the same that Jason talked about: don’t be afraid to email, devalue, or otherwise place your product on sale. Brian referenced another post from Justin Ferriman of LearnDash: ignore Black Friday at your own peril.
When it comes to 2022, Brian mentioned that we’ll continue to see many trillions of dollars get spent in online stores. But he also talked about the idea of “headless” commerce: the ability to place a buy button anywhere, with online checkout.
Imagine emailing customers a custom checkout link that they can click on and pay for right there. Or sending the link via text… sharing on Twitter, or embedding on a website wholly different from your store’s website. We’re already seeing this trend happen with Apple and Google Pay, as well as Stripe, Paypal, and Shopify’s own unified checkout buttons. If you sell online in 2022, this is definitely something to look out for.