Britain’s bricks and mortar businesses have been given a stark warning to embrace online trading or risk ruin.
Traditional firms need to adapt to the global internet market place to prosper, says leading business guru Adam Stott.
“It’s adapt or die quite frankly,” he says. “A lot of businesses have their doors open and expect their customers to flood back in but behaviour has changed and they will have to work harder to get trade.
“You have to go and meet the customers where they are and that is online. If you don’t, you will be left behind.”
Adam, who runs a business coaching empire and starred on Channel 5’s Rich House, Poor House series, believes that British business needs to wake up to the potential from online connections and trading.
“Sadly, a lot of companies are not forward thinking and they are putting themselves at risk. If they don’t change, they won’t get results,” he adds. “The world has moved on and customer behaviour has changed. Business leaders need to recognise that and act on it.
“The potential from online marketing is immense. It is very easy to rapidly grow a business from the ground up because online allows you to meet 100 people at a time rather than just one and the power of online advertising can get you in front 250,000 potential customers a week.
“The public understands online and is comfortable with it and the ones that are taking market share are the ones that really get how to use it and understand their customers via online marketing.”
E-commerce has been growing for a decade but online shopping has been supercharged by pandemic restrictions that closed or restricted High Street trading. Figures from the Office of National Statistics reported that e-commerce was worth £693 billion annually and accounted for 19.4% of all sales before the pandemic.
That figure is forecast to jump to 26.2% when returns for 2020/2021 are analysed, according to Statista while a Retail Agility survey by law firm TLT found that 89% of retailers felt their digital and e-commerce platforms needed improvement.
“We’ve got 1000 businesses, so we look after, and that we coach and train, the ones that are succeeding and that are succeeding at a high level, are the ones that understand how to use online to build relationships and new prospects,” added Essex-based Adam, a member of the Forbes Coaches Council for wealth, a leading expert in monetising social media.
“Britain has the talent and energy to succeed and this is the perfect landscape for start-ups and entrepreneurs but I’m not sure enough companies are switched onto yet or they are not moving quickly enough.
“There are golden opportunities out there and bricks and mortar business will need to use online to support their existing trade.
“Online is about mass conversations and ,the more you are involved, the more business you will get. At low cost, you can get your message out to 250,000 people which is a fantastic opportunity to succeed.
“Companies need to understand who is in their target market and craft a message that meets them online and converts them into business.”
Adam, who established a multi-million-pound car sales business and now coaches business leaders around the world, wants to see business skills as a standard part of school lessons.
“Business models can be taught in schools and they will help youngsters understand how finance and trade work and equip them to be a success in this new, technological world,” he adds. “Look all around the world and it is the tech-based countries that are succeeding.”