The new free tool, called Main Street Online, assesses the unique needs of small businesses through a series of questions and then provides customized guidance on how they can implement and maximize solutions to improve their digital presence.
Chief program officer at Main Street America, Matthew Wagner explained why the nonprofit decided to create its new ecommerce tool with support from GoDaddy in a press release, saying:
“The marketplace for e-commerce solutions is crowded and confusing to navigate. Since small businesses are often limited by time and resources, we wanted to develop a tool to help them easily navigate the process of strengthening their online presence as it will be essential to ensure a strong business model moving forward.”
Main Street Online
The idea to create an ecommerce tool designed specifically for small businesses arose following Main Street America’s April survey of nearly 6,000 small business owners.
Of those surveyed, almost 67% said they had no ecommerce component to their business. At the same time though, the 33% of respondents that said they did have ecommerce set up indicated that it made up less than 25% of their sales volume. Of the nearly 2.6m retail businesses with less than 20 employees, more than 1.7m of them are in need of an ecommerce sales channel to survive and thrive during and after the pandemic.
Main Street Online was then designed specifically for small businesses with 20 or fewer employees in the retail, service and food and beverage industries. After completing the tool’s questionnaire, small businesses then receive customized results that cover everything from POS systems, website platforms and content creation software to help market their business.