Internet shoppers were hungry for bargains on Christmas Day it seems. Indeed, John Lewis reported a 12-fold increase in visits to its web site this Christmas, compared with 2007. But that may well be because they launched an online sale immediately after their physical stores closed their doors on Christmas Eve.

This integrated approach is probably why John Lewis is one of the Top 10 UK Online Retailers, according to Nielsen Online.

The list is interesting because 8 out of the 10 are old, bricks and mortar retailers who have been on the British High Street for decades. Indeed, some might say they came to the Internet party rather late. Only two of the ten, Amazon and Play.com are “young upstarts” in the world of business. And Play.com is run by a former High Street retailer, from HMV. So, altogether, the best retailers online are those who have been successfully running shops for years.

Meanwhile, millions of businesses are hoping that the Internet will bring in that much needed cash. These business owners want to emulate just some of the success of those Top 10 Online retailers. But what is it they have done to achieve their Internet brilliance?

It’s clear they have focused on traditional selling. They establish and maintain their brands, then sell, sell, sell. True, they may now use a few Internet “tricks” such as email marketing; but all they are doing is what they have done for years and years. And guess what – what has worked in their bricks and mortar stores is working well online too.

So, if you want to sell more from your web site here’s what you need to do. Switch off your computer, get your hat and coat because we’re off down the High Street. Simply go into the stores of those top retailers and analyse what they do in their shops. John Lewis, Tesco, M&S have it down to a fine art. Look and learn; that will bring you more online success than trying to find the next gizmo that will take your Facebook profile to the top of Google.

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