How to Build an Effective Ecommerce Marketing Strategy
For years, forward thinking business people have been saying that the future of shopping is online. Now the future is here. In the past, ecommerce was considered cutting edge and even somewhat radical by some. These days, businesses that have an online shopping presence are normal and mainstream. This means that it isn’t easy to stand out from similar brands in the digital marketplace.
Therefore, when you’re setting up your business sales channels, it’s imperative to have a robust and effective ecommerce marketing strategy. But where do you start? This article will present a concise, yet complete guide to developing an ecommerce marketing strategy that will help you to establish a strong brand identity and offer a superior shopping experience.
Step 1: Identify and Know Your Target Audience
Most would agree it’s common sense that finding the right customers is crucial for your business success. And yet, there are some companies out there that still use the ‘throw it against the wall and see what sticks’ approach, hoping to attract everyone and actually attracting no one.
If you want to succeed, you have to have a plan to find consumers that are most receptive to your products or services – your Ideal Client Avatar (ICA).
To do this, you need to start with researching and evaluating the importance of factors such as:
Once you have this information, you can then drill down further into more complex factors.
Try putting yourself in your ICA’s shoes. What problem do they have and how can you provide a solution? What keeps them up at night? How have your competitors let them down? Think about what specific needs they have. Are they looking for immediate service? Do they require 24-hour customer support?
Profile current customers
Take a close look at your current customers. Especially think about what they have in common. Ask yourself why your repeat and loyal customers continue to buy from you. Conducting customer surveys that provide opinions and feedback can help you hone in on who exactly your ICA is.
Observe your competitors
Have a look at your competition by examining their digital footprint. Go through their websites, social media accounts and feedback. Make a note of what their bestselling product or service is. Based on your research, you’ll be able to ascertain who they’re targeting and then you can decide to what extent that demographic is suitable for you.
Step 2: Establish Your Own Online Store
Once you identify and know your target audience, you’ll then be in a position to establish your own online store. It’s very important to do this before you look at third-party sales channels. Doing things this way allows you to set up your brand. You can customise your site exactly the way you want – you can follow your vision rather than someone else’s.
Once you’ve got the content ready, you can then focus on gaining momentum and traction in the marketplace. Your site can increase consumer awareness and make you recognisable and trustworthy through:
- Google Shopping
Consumers will see your paid ads when they use Google search. Once a Google user clicks on your ad, they’ll be taken straight to your nominated product page. This platform is one of the most influential channels for ecommerce stores because it’s so powerful. Research shows that Google Shopping ads currently drive 76.4% of all retail searches.
You don’t have to be an expert to get the basics right. Here are some of the essentials that will make it easier for Google’s algorithms to crawl, index and understand your content.
User experience. ‘Slow’ and ‘risk’ are four letter words in the Google-verse. Google will rank websites it deems sluggish and unsafe poorly. It’s important to optimise the speed of your website, as well as get an SSL certificate.
Relevance. The important question here is, ‘How well does the content in your website align with a search query?’ Relevant keywords, meta descriptions and high-quality information will improve your ranking in SERPs.
Authority. You can make you website far more credible when you build backlinks with other high-ranking websites, particularly within your industry.
Using an AI Chatbot has a lot of benefits, including offering 24/7 customer service, boosting lead generation and saving on costs. But make sure you go with an AI Chatbot, rather than the inferior Rule-based Chatbot or Intellectually Independent Chatbot.
- Other Strategies
Other effective strategies include: using inbound marketing, optimising the checkout process and highlighting social proof.
Step 3: Determine Your Optimum Sales Channels in the Online Marketplace
When you’re researching about your ICA, one of the most important things to discover is WHERE they like to shop. It’s all about meeting buyers where they are – about maximising the potential of whichever sales channels your ICA frequents. Of course, your ICAs may commonly visit more than one online marketplace, so there is definitely a need to consider using multiple sales channels.
An added benefit of setting up your own digital shop first is that you can set it up as the ‘mothership’ or ‘control centre.’ You can use it as the base for allowing integration with other sales channels you choose.
Some of the most powerful sales channels are:
The worlds top online marketplace with 5.2 billion visits per month. Is there a need to say any more?
If you don’t want your sales channel to store your inventory, then eBay is a good option. And it doesn’t hurt that it’s the world’s second placed online marketplace with 1.7 billion visits per month.
- Catch of the Day
This is a curated market platform. Merchants are screened to ensure products are safe, provide value for money and are good quality.
This online destination focuses on the shopping experience and digital efficiency.
- My Deal
My Deal has excellent social proof, with over 40,000 reviews on Trustpilot and 82% of respondents said that their experience was excellent or great.
The Bottom Line
Whatever Ecommerce Marketing Strategy you choose to go with, it makes sense to talk to someone with experience and expertise when it comes to implementing it. There are barriers to be avoided, problems to be solved, choices to be made.
The bottom line is that no one knows the ecommerce marketing space like Donohue Consultancy does. Make sure your strategy is the right one for you – call us today.