4 Marketing Tips for eCommerce Business
Ecommerce is a booming industry. With the right product, a new ecommerce business has the ability to net millions within its first fiscal year. The caveat? Your audience has to notice the business and see its products first.
Marketing is even more important for ecommerce companies than it is for brick-and-mortar stores. There is no foot traffic for a digital-only brand. There are no opportunities for customers to pop in and see your inventory. Everything exists in a digital space, and customers have to trust that what they’re buying on your site is what they’re going to receive from your inventory.
Here are the four best ways to market an ecommerce business, increase your brand visibility, and reach new customers.
1. Create an Email Newsletter
Email, unlike social media channels, allows you to directly connect with your target audience and allows them to open up your correspondence when it’s convenient for them. The numbers don’t lie. The average open rate for ecommerce marketing emails is nearly 22%. Comparatively, Facebook’s organic reach is 6% and Twitter’s is only 2%.
Start by adding a subscription box to your home page. Motivated shoppers will immediately sign up; others will need an incentive. To catch these more reluctant shoppers, offer a discount code at checkout for subscribing to your ecommerce newsletter.
The goal of your email newsletter is twofold. First, your company wants to collect the information of potential customers in order to facilitate long-term relationships with those customers. Second, your company wants to provide your customers with useful, entertaining information in order to build thought leadership and increase brand loyalty.
Use the newsletter to give your audience fun, interesting content, timely news updates, and sales discounts. Avoid making it overly salesy as that will result in your audience hitting the Unsubscribe link. Make the tone of your emails conversational. Remember to embed your social media links, which can boost your follower numbers.
Many ecommerce brands are using emails to address their biggest foe: the abandoned shopping cart. A reminder email, alerting your customers that they still have items left in their shopping cart, provides a psychological trigger that induces customers to complete their purchase. According to the ecommerce marketing firm, BigCommerce, abandoned cart emails may be able to recover approximately 15% of the revenue lost to abandoned shopping carts.
2. Build Up Your Number of Product Reviews
Product reviews are a critical form of social proof for an ecommerce business. They generate what marketers call “wisdom of the crowd.” Namely, if a large number of your customers speak highly of your products online, then prospective customers will trust their word and purchase products with the best reviews.
Using your email list, ask your customers to review the products they’ve purchased from your company. Highlight the most colorful reviews on your ecommerce site. Provide metrics, such as the number of reviews and average star rating, to bolster the credibility of each product.
As your ecommerce offerings grow, implement item-to-item collaborative filtering into your product data set and automate product suggestions for your repeat shoppers. This is the same kind of filtering behind Amazon’s product suggestions. It’s been proven to not only increase sales but customer retention as well.
3. Grow Your Brand Presence on Instagram
While it’s not an ideal click-to-buy platform, Instagram is the go-to platform to build brand awareness on a global scale. Its reach is staggering.
It has more than 800 million monthly active users, only 88 million of which are within the U.S. More importantly, the demographics that Instagram reaches have disposable income. A 2017 Pew Survey found that, among adult Instagram users, 31% make more than $75,000 per year and 32% earn between $50,000 and $74,999 per year.
How can your ecommerce brand tap into this massive, engaged, global audience? Start by creating a content strategy. Identify the times you will post, the kinds of photos (such as landscapes, portraits, and action shots), and the filters your band will use. Do the same for your captions. The tone of the captions should reflect your brand and should match with the tone of the photos you’re featuring. The goal with your photos and your content should be consistency.
It’s estimated that 80% of users connect with brands via Instagram, generating 10 times the number of brand-customer engagements than Facebook does. Over time, these engagements translate into brand loyalty. With a consistent, compelling content strategy, your ecommerce company can potentially reach millions of prospective customers.
4. Develop Multiple Channels for Customer Service
A strong digital presence cuts both ways. Between social media, online product reviews, and email newsletters, your ecommerce business has a lot of contact with its customers. It also gives them multiple platforms to report about their experience with your products, services, and staff.
If their experiences are favorable, your customers’ praises will benefit your business’ reputation. If those experiences fall short of your customers’ expectations, it can potentially tarnish that reputation permanently.
How can you maintain the former and mitigate the latter? Offer customer support through multiple channels, including social media, live chat, phone, email, and a 24/7 help desk. Make sure your support staff responds quickly and immediately all help requests. To prevent off-the-cuff remarks from your help staff, create internal scripts that spell out how your staff should respond to customers on each channel.
Kick Off Your Marketing Campaign with SEO, Pay-Per-Click Advertising, and Analytics
It’s time to start marketing your ecommerce website. Follow these four tips to get started.
As you kick off your new marketing campaign, reach out to the expert staff at iPage. Our marketers specialize in pay-per-click advertising and search engine optimization. Every month, our team will provide you with a report that includes up-to-date analytics. This data outlines how effective your campaign has been and how it has improved your Google search ranking. Talk to our team and learn how we can help to steer your ecommerce marketing efforts.