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Hyperlocal e-commerce is a buzzword in the e-commerce world. As the name suggests, a hyperlocal e-commerce store is located very close to the customer, more so than a traditional e-commerce store. Unlike the latter, which may ship items to customers from the other end of the country without actually having a store or warehouse in their city, a hyperlocal business uses small business sales analysis and other tools to operate within a small local area.

Mostly small, local businesses, hyperlocal e-commerce stores can take the form of a neighborhood retail store that also sells goods online, or of an exclusive online store that provides products straight from the shelves of other retailers in the area. Either way, logistics are key for successful hyperlocal e-commerce.

Some of the benefits that a hyperlocal e-commerce store has over bigger, established retailers are the selection of local products it can offer (which can include groceries and food), its more personalized services, and faster deliveries. Instead of asking customers to wait a day or two for their ordered items, a hyperlocal business often delivers products in a matter of hours after the order has been placed, or even less for food or medicine deliveries.

Another advantage of a hyperlocal business is that it can drop shipping costs. Deliveries can be made quickly and in a cost effective way because of the small range that the delivery team has to cover. Furthermore, it can be easier for a hyperlocal business to build trust within its neighborhood or community that it is for a retailer, since they use smaller teams that regular customers can easily become familiar with.

For a hyperlocal online business, inventory management, while obviously important, isn’t a huge challenge, because of the relatively limited numbers of items it provides and the proximity of the suppliers, which are all local. Like any type of online business, however, a hyperlocal store needs accurate small business sales analysis to better understand its customers and improve its stock management and operations.

If you are thinking about starting an online business, or if you want to give your existing online shop a new direction, the key to success may not be reaching out to a broader group of customers, but focusing on your local area, in other words, creating a hyperlocal e-commerce business. With a good small business sales analysis tool such as DataQlick and the accurate sales forecasts it provides, your hyperlocal e-commerce business can become a thriving local business.