The business of selling equestrian supplies has long been a traditional one, going back to the days of the blacksmith. Even a few years ago, it consisted mainly of small mom and pop stores that carried as broad a range as possible of equestrian equipment. Customers searching for more variety and specificity in equine equipment had to turn to catalogs to find products suitable to their needs. For years, this business model remained unchanged until the advent of ecommerce.
As it has done for many other niche businesses, the online marketplace has thrown open the floodgates to a broad range of customers who can now purchase equine supplies from the comfort of their couches with just the click of a mouse. Geography and store size no longer limit equestrian suppliers; through a well designed website and savvy online marketing strategies, companies can now reach horse owners across the country, even across world.
In order to have a profitable presence as they transitioned online, many companies have implemented the successful two-prong strategy. Successful companies have designed their websites to be both shopping portals and resources for curious horse owners looking for educational materials and insightful articles about what interests them most in the equestrian world. Websites with useful, professional information provide this free service to potential new customers, and when these horse owners have a positive experience with an educational resource, they have eventually become customers loyal to the website brand.
The ability to find a niche audience has been another boon of the equestrian industry slowly shifting online. Companies have had great success in tailoring their marketing strategies and product offerings to better engage niche customers looking for specific equine supplies. Equestrian suppliers utilizing the two-pronged strategy of acting as a shopping portal and informational hub can tailor the online customer experience to a specific audience’s needs.
Online Equine Supplies is one such company; the blog posts and articles integrated into their website attract trail riders of all levels of experience. Providing this free resource to trail riders also serves to attract the best possible potential customers to the expansive range of trail riding supplies that Online Equine Supplies carries. Instead of attempting a catchall marketing plan, companies like Online Equine Supplies can hone their focus to a specific audience and address that audience’s needs with pinpointed strategies.
Another company that has seen great success through the rise of online marketing is Equine Marketing Success, a firm that specializes in servicing horse professionals with internet marketing and print campaigns. While Equine Marketing Success’s work may have changed drastically as the equestrian marketplace has slowly moved online, they are growing right alongside the online equine industry. According to owner and founder Dan O’Donnell, “We have more than quadrupled our business in the last year. The horse marketplace is growing incredibly fast as equestrian based businesses are able to see large returns through web marketing at a much lower return on investment than catalog or print advertising.” The firm helps businesses looking to move into the online platform implement an excellent online marketing strategy through creating solid product marketing alongside targeted content for horse owners.
It has been a long road for the equestrian supplies industry as it slowly transitioned from the dusty catalogs and mom and pop shops to the slick, lightning-fast realm of the internet. However the vast potential for growth and the ability to tap into niche audiences has made the transition well worth it for those businesses willing to develop an engaging website and a long-term marketing plan.