The world of online shopping is getting bigger, faster than ever and doesn’t look like it is in any mood to slow down. The fight is fierce on the world wide web and you have to brace yourself for the challenges if you want to get your customer’s attention.
The good news is that as overwhelming as the various e-commerce marketing strategies might sound, you have to focus on only a handful. The idea is to pick the ones that work for your online business. Here are a few of the tried and tested marketing strategies for e-commerce and a few out-of-the-box marketing techniques for your online store to get you noticed.
Content is the King!
Use a tool like Google Analytics, to have a look at what articles generated the most traffic to your site every month and which of those led to the most sales.
Secondly, there should be a strategy in place for your content. Each week you should set aside some time for monitoring your content statistics. Make your site the “go to” place for advice related to your products. For example, if you have a travel website, have blogs, videos, photographs of popular tourist spots.
Blogging leads to more traffic and is considered as one of the best e-commerce marketing strategies by many experts. It is known to get many more leads and results in sales too.
Make your site mobile friendly
Recently Google has changed its algorithm for search on phones to give preference to sites that are mobile friendly. In its first-quarter results, Facebook has generated 73% of its revenue from its advertisements on mobile with a whopping 87% of its active users visiting the network from their handsets. These are just a couple of indicators that you are already lagging behind if your online store is not easily accessible on mobile, if not in the form of an app.
Even so, it is not too late. Get it going with a simple mobile site to begin with and then you can make it feature rich slowly and steadily.
Social Media coverage
Social media can have a major impact on your sales if done properly. The aim should be getting your customers act as your brand advocates.
First, make a plan about which platforms you will be using. Typically the visual sites, like Instagram and Pinterest, work best for online shops. But Twitter and Facebook are equally important. It may be beneficial to focus on one platform, instead of targeting many, if you have limited time to spare.
What should you post?
Social media strategy is always closely linked to content marketing strategy. It is wise to share only 20% promotional content on social media and the rest being interesting content that appeals to your audience. Followers don’t like a constant flow of promotional messages only. They want to be informed and entertained, rather than just sold to.
Converse with followers
Besides posting content for your followers, it’s important to get involved with them through conversations. Keep a watch on what’s trending and comment on it, particularly if it’s of some interest to your audience.
Keep your followers engaged
You can keep your followers engaged by rewarding them when they post, share or ‘like’ your content. Send them a personal message when they buy your product, or offer them an exclusive discount code/competition.
Make sure you make it easier for users to find you using appropriate tags, etc.
Go for Affiliate Marketing
Through affiliate marketing, you share a percentage of your profits with your affiliates who market your products. You reward them for their efforts. The affiliates are provided with a unique URL to help advertise your products.
The alternative to affiliate marketing is when you promote and sell your affiliate scheme yourself by contacting potential affiliate marketers. Though this approach requires more effort, it runs cheaper.
It isn’t an easy task to get as many affiliates on board as you want to. But once you have them, you will see the sales coming in. Offering the affiliates a small percentage of your revenue won’t pinch you either when the quantities increase.
Search Engine Optimization
It is a difficult task as the algorithms used by search engines to produce relevant results are complex and they are constantly evolving. But don’t get bogged down by the complexity. Instead, stay honest to your products. Which means, don’t go overboard in trying to plug your entire site with one word or creating artificial backlinks and so on. Instead, ask for backlinks from related manufacturers.
It is a trial and error method till you funnel it down to the best e-commerce marketing strategies that work for you.
Email marketing tactics
It is the most powerful tool in your marketing bag. If you’re not using it effectively, you would be missing out on sales.
If a visitor on your website doesn’t buy from you, it is best to have their email address. There are numerous ways to do that e.g offering your visitor discount on his next purchase on signing up or add a sign-up field at the end of your blog posts etc.Your email marketing strategy should simply be an extension of your content strategy.
Paid advertising or Google Adwords is not always the first option for new businesses as it requires cash. But it can be a great way to generate sales, if you have money.
Paid ads(PPC) are typically shown in search listings and social media websites to target .
Only when someone clicks on your ad and get directed to your website ,you get charged a fee by Google. Once PPC is set up correctly,you start generating ROI. You can further ramp up your expenditure on ads to increase your revenue.
If you decide to have your own campaigns, then be ready to spend plenty of time researching about best practices and the keyword bidding process. Another alternative is to hire an agency to run your campaigns. They will have the needed expertise and experience to make it a success.
Start with a combination of two or three marketing tips for online stores from the above. See what best works for your business. Get a hang of what they are doing for you in a few months and then add, delete, edit. In the dynamic field of marketing ‘trial and error’ is a must.