Every day, new internet users buy products online. From America to Europe to Asia, eCommerce is here to stay.
Therefore, it’s no surprise that global eCommerce sales are expected to hit $5.5 trillion in 2022, according to Statista. But while you have more potential customers, more competitors are also trying to take their share of the eCommerce pie.
So, don’t expect internet users to land on your website and launch a buying spree without your effort. That’s why marketing is vital to any successful eCommerce business’s operations.
Now, there’s no single strategy that works for every eCommerce business. So how do you know the best for your business?
This guide will show you the most effective marketing strategies and how to identify the best for your needs.
How do you know what strategy is best for your eCommerce business?
As I mentioned earlier, every eCommerce business’s marketing strategy is unique according to various factors. Nevertheless, here are three critical considerations to help you discover the best marketing strategy for your eCommerce business.
Your ideal buyer
While billions of users are online, only a few profiles of people qualify as your ideal customer. Therefore, defining your ideal buyers will determine most of your marketing and even business decisions.
You can define your ideal buyer by creating a buyer persona, which will include details such as:
- Favorite marketing channels
- Pain points
These pieces of information will determine elements of your marketing campaigns, such as marketing channels, brand voice, targeting criteria, and more. Here’s an eCommerce buyer persona example from Drip:
Your marketing goals
Although your overall goal is to acquire more customers and revenue, there are many stages of that journey. Your marketing campaigns at various buyer journey stages will have different goals.
Common marketing goals for eCommerce businesses include:
- Brand awareness
- Lead acquisition
- Customer acquisition
- Customer retention
Once you have a goal for your marketing campaign, it will inform your marketing messages, channels, and tasks. You must also define the metrics to measure your goal during the goal-setting process.
Without setting a goal for your marketing campaigns, you can easily fall into a scattergun approach. As a result, there’ll be no way to measure the success or failure of your campaigns.
Your marketing budget
First, your overall budget will determine the channels you’ll focus on. With a big budget, you can have more space to experiment. However, a small budget will restrict you to only a tried-and-tested strategy.
Whatever your budget, it’s vital to optimize it to obtain the best result possible.
Considering these factors, you can create a unique eCommerce marketing strategy to meet your business needs.
The best eCommerce marketing strategies
Below, we’ll consider six proven strategies to help you reach more customers. Of course, you can combine some of these strategies to achieve your marketing goals.
Let’s go into the details.
Before a customer is ready to buy your product, they’ve done a lot of research. So to give your business the best chance of converting prospects, you must connect with them during the research stage.
ECommerce SEO is the process of optimizing your web pages to rank high for essential business keywords. Here are tasks to execute to improve your eCommerce SEO:
- Content Marketing: no page can rank on search engines without some content on it. Hence, valuable content is one of the most vital criteria for ranking high for a keyword. Today, SEO has gone beyond just stuffing a page with keywords. Search engines consider search intent and ensure your content provides the information a searcher is looking for. Therefore, creating pieces of content that solve your visitors’ problems is vital.
- Technical SEO: includes tasks you execute in your website’s backend to ensure search engines can quickly discover your website. For example, you can submit your sitemap to index your pages and make them crawlable. Another aim of technical SEO is to improve the website experience for visitors. For instance, you can increase the speed of your website for a boost in rankings and usability. Another similar focus is making your website mobile-friendly to complement both of the points mentioned above.
- On-Page SEO: these are SEO tasks you do on your web page. They include tasks such as adding your target keyword to the page URL, title, subheadings, and other aspects of your page. Header tags are essential, they help break down content to help search engines better understand your content.
- Off-Page SEO: while you can improve SEO for your eCommerce website through many actions on your website, you can also take steps outside your website. One of the most prominent off-page SEO tactics is link building. When other websites relevant to your niche link to your page, they help build the authority of that page. Another critical factor is that the website linking to you already has a lot of high-quality backlinks to your pages will boost your chances of higher ranks.
By engaging in eCommerce SEO campaigns, you can acquire more leads and customers through search engines.
Pay Per Click Advertising
Improving organic search and social media performance can take a lot of time that you don’t have. However, with pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, you can reach your audience now.
For PPC advertising on Google, you must take the necessary steps to improve your chances of success. They include:
- Conduct keyword research: what keywords are your potential buyers putting in the search box? You can find the best keywords to reach your prospects through keyword research on Google Keyword planner and other research tools.
- Adjust bidding according to your goals: Are your ads showing up for your preferred keywords? Is the competition too high? Is a click worth much higher than you’re currently bidding? You can also achieve better success with your bidding if you increase your ad quality score through high-relevant ads and better click-through rates.
- Build relevant landing pages: your ad copy must align with your landing page copy to improve your chances of conversions. Some landing page builders allow you to take it further through dynamic text replacement. This will feature searchers’ keywords on your landing page.
- Use Google shopping ads: These ads are usually created for transactional keywords. These ads will display your products and their prices on the search results page. You can also add shipping information and ratings.
- Use retargeting ads: if someone has visited some pages on your website, you can send them ads related to those pages. For instance, you can target a shopper who has visited a product page with ads for that product. This will make them more receptive to your ads.
After executing these tactics, you can improve performance through A/B testing. Frankly, there’s no single ad that works for every business. So, you have to test various ad campaign elements to improve performance.
According to statistics from Litmus, email marketing can deliver an ROI of $45 for every dollar spent by eCommerce businesses. So, unsurprisingly, this is one of the best marketing channels to improve performance.
That is because email marketing for eCommerce has many advantages compared to other marketing channels. First, your marketing messages will land in your subscribers’ inboxes. This is more exposure than other channels.
Second, sending different messages according to the subscriber’s interests is easy. In other words, personalization can make a lot of difference in your marketing campaigns.
Naturally, the best email marketing software you can use today will allow you to personalize your emails based on many criteria such as:
- Purchase history
- Emails opened
- Website pages visited
As a result of sending relevant emails to subscribers, you’ll increase your open and click-through rates. And since you’re directing them to a relevant web page, there’s a higher chance of converting such visitors.
Beyond personalization, email marketing automation is another effective strategy. Email marketing automation involves sending a series of messages to your subscribers based on a schedule or when some conditions are met.
Some examples of automated email sequences are:
- Welcome emails
- Lead nurturing emails
- Promotional emails
- Abandoned cart emails
- Up-sell and cross-sell emails
- Onboarding emails
- Re-engagement emails
To create these emails, you’ll find the necessary tools in your email marketing software. Better still, some software packages will provide automation templates you can use to create your campaigns. Here’s an example of a sequence built with
While creating your sequences, you can add triggers or conditions to add or remove subscribers from your email automation. For your eCommerce business, email marketing is a must rather than an afterthought.
While social media is a platform to connect with friends, users also follow businesses and check out information and product offers. Here, eCommerce brands can provide value to their audience through content that can solve their problems.
Of course, your business needs to focus on social media platforms where you can reach your ideal customers. Some ways eCommerce businesses can use social media include:
- Posting product tips
- Displaying product use cases
- Providing industry information
- Making product announcements
- Featuring user-generated content (UGC)
- Featuring influencer content
- Selling products
- Customer care
In many industries, you’ll find experts and celebrities who have gained a big following due to years of excellent performance in their industries. As a result, these influencers have audiences who trust their product recommendations.
Naturally, eCommerce businesses have taken advantage of this phenomenon to promote their products. However, while launching an influencer marketing campaign, you need to find the right influencers.
The right social media management tool can help you find the right influencers. Then, it can help you track the effectiveness of your influencer campaigns.
Fortunately, you’ll find many examples of brands using influencer marketing on Instagram.
Over the years, social selling has become a popular strategy for eCommerce businesses. For instance, Statista found that about half of American social media users aged 14 to 34 made purchases through this channel in 2021.
In fact, some social media platforms now allow you to sell your products on their platforms. For example, Instagram allows you to add shopping tags to products on your Instagram posts.
A user can click on this tag to buy this product or shop more products without leaving the Instagram app. This allows you to eliminate the barrier of taking users out of Instagram.
Pinterest also allows influencers and brands to create shoppable pins. This will let users shop products on Pinterest or click a link to visit the eCommerce website.
On social media, there are many opportunities to promote and sell your products.
Since you can’t reach all your prospects through your efforts alone, you can partner with publishers who will promote your products on blog posts, emails, social media, and videos. In return, publishers will take a share of the sales they refer.
This will help you increase your reach faster. After all, according to Backlinko, “40% of U.S. merchants cited affiliate programs as their top customer acquisition channel”.
First, you have to find a suitable affiliate marketing platform. This will help you organize details such as your affiliates, commissions, and other pieces of information. Moreover, your publishers can see the number of clicks, affiliates, paid affiliates, commissions, and more.
Some affiliate marketing platforms such as PartnerStack, Everflow, and Impact.com provide tools to run your affiliate marketing campaigns. On the other hand, you can use affiliate marketplaces such as ShareASale and Commission Junction.
Beyond this, you need to create an affiliate marketing page on your website. On this page, you’ll explain your affiliate terms to publishers. Publishers should also have a link to register.
After a publisher has registered as an affiliate, you should send emails to them providing tips on how they can promote your products more effectively.
Optimizing Website UI/UX
Your website is the first impression a shopper will have about your business. If your website design is poor, shoppers will see your business as sloppy. And sloppy businesses don’t make great products, right?
So, a shopper can leave before they get to see your wonderful products if your website UI/UX is poor. However, there are a few steps to ensure this never happens.
First, you need a simple site structure. This means shoppers should be able to get to any page in no more than 4 clicks. More so, you can install a search bar to help visitors find products easily.
You can also use a chatbot and live chat to answer any vital questions prospects may have during shopping. Another way to optimize your eCommerce website UI/UX is to make your website scannable and use obvious CTAs.
Today, a large percentage of your buyers will be on mobile devices. Having a mobile responsive website ensures all the essential elements on your page will be visible to mobile users.
Adding the geolocation feature helps provide shipping information and addresses of your nearest physical stores. Implementing these tactics will help provide a seamless experience to shoppers during the buyer’s journey.
As more people shop online, your eCommerce business should prepare for more challenging competition. Effective marketing is one of the best ways to give your business the right exposure.
Even if you have an excellent product, nobody will buy it if they’ve never heard of it. But with the right marketing strategies, you’ll attract more shoppers to your online store and sell more products to them.
Employ the strategies explained in this guide to boost your marketing results.
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