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4 free technologies boutique owners can use to boost online sales

4 free technologies boutique owners can use to boost online sales

When you want to boost sales in your brick-and-mortar store, you may invest in new display fixtures, mannequins, signage or other elements to elevate your floor display.

But promoting your products online takes a different strategy.

Luckily, you don't necessarily need to invest a lot of money to create an effective online marketing strategy. To boost your remote sales, consider using one of the following free tech tools:

1. Social media

If you want to engage with your target audience and promote your brand, social media is one of your most powerful marketing tools – and basic accounts are 100 percent free.

According to data from Pew Research Center, the percentage of adults using the most poplar social media platforms are as follows:

  • Facebook (79 percent)
  • Instagram (32 percent)
  • Pinterest (31 percent)
  • LinkedIn (29 percent)
  • Twitter (24 percent)

Clearly, if you aren't at least on Facebook, you're missing out on a valuable opportunity to promote your business. A report by the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth found that in 2016, 77 percent of Millennials were influenced by Facebook to make purchases both online and in-store.

Use your social media accounts to post about new inventory and link to the pages on your website to encourage consumers to make purchases online.

2. Mobile apps

When it comes to promoting your online shopping options, you can find plenty of tools right on your mobile device. To maximize your business productivity, for example, consider Evernote, an app that helps you organize notes and communicate information with your team. Or try Trello, a platform that helps you prioritize and organize projects, create checklists and more. 

"Don't forget to make sure your website is viewable via mobile device."

While you're on your phone, don't forget to make sure that your website is viewable via mobile device. If you want to reach shoppers online, you need to reach them where they're at. According to web design, SEO and e-commerce company OuterBox, in the last six months 62 percent of smartphone users made an online purchase on their mobile device.  

The report additionally found that 80 percent of consumers used a mobile phone to look up information like product reviews while shopping inside of a physical store. So a mobile-friendly website may even improve your sales at your brick-and-mortar location. 

3. YouTube

There was a time when airing video content that promoted your brand would have required a significant investment. But thanks to YouTube, you have an online platform where you can share engaging visual messages with your target audience for free. 

According to a Think With Google report, YouTube reaches more viewers 18 or older on an average day than any TV network and viewership of television content on YouTube has increased by 230 percent since 2013. 

4. Blog

If your website doesn't have a blog, it's time to get one. These tools are a powerful – and free – strategy for increasing your website's online visibility. Every time you publish a new blog post, your website receives another indexed page. In simple terms, that means that you have a better chance of showing up in online searches and driving consumers to your website. 

To get your blog going, start by thinking about your target audience and then decide what topics they would be interested in reading about. If you're a clothing boutique targeting young women, for example, you may want to write posts with styling tips. In the content, you can link to different products, encouraging consumers to make a purchase online. 

With a little bit of intentionality and these free tools, you'll be well on your way to increasing your online sales in no time!