4 Effective Ecommerce Marketing Tactics
by Mike Khorev
June 15, 2019
Marketing is one of the most difficult challenges for any e-commerce businesses. Yet, overcoming it is also one of the most important aspect in achieving success, from finding new prospects, nurturing these prospects until they are ready to buy, and encouraging the conversion.
In this guide, we will discuss four of the most effective marketing tactics for the e-commerce environment. These tactics can be very effective to increase the revenue of your business, encouraging growth, and maximizing profitability.
Without further ado, let us begin.
Have an Effective Email Marketing
Email marketing—even amidst all the newer platforms and technologies today— is still one of, if not the most most effective tactics available, especially for nurturing your prospects until they are ready for the purchase.
Since in an e-commerce business, we lack of any physical engagements with our customers, your email marketing campaign will be your main, and most effective way to maintain engagement.
When implementing email marketing for e-commerce, here are some key considerations:
- Proper audience segmentation and personalization are very important factors to success nowadays. You will need to understand the needs of each specific audience, and deliver the right message properly. (link drip marketing)
- An engaging subject line will be the key to optimizing open rate. Make sure it’s to-the point and can communicate the benefit of opening the message. You will also need to optimize preview texts with a similar approach.
- Have an optimized landing page for each email sent. This is the key to maximizing conversion rate.
- The quality of your content, as well as visual design will be the most important factors in determining click-through rate (CTR).
To learn further about email marketing for e-commerce, you might want to check this guide by BigCommerce.
Implementing Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing is the popular term now used to describe the activity of regularly publishing relevant, valuable audience to attract prospects. This can be an active blog, podcast, or even a YouTube channel.
The main idea of inbound marketing—as the name suggests— is to pull our audience “inward”, and it is particularly effective for e-commerce because:
- Your business is mainly online-based where you don’t have physical engagement. By regularly publishing content, you can maintain and optimize engagement with prospects and customers.
- A proper inbound marketing will improve your site’s ranking in search results. Remember that people mainly find e-commerce sites through a Google search, and this can be a very effective strategy to improve visibility.
When implementing inbound marketing in an e-commerce setting, here are some key considerations:
- Your inbound marketing efforts should not focus solely on promoting your products or services, but rather to provide relevant information about your niche.
- The key is a proper understanding of your audience: their needs, problems, and behaviors in general. If you can answer a specific issue with your content that is relevant for your ideal audience, you can drive a lot of traffic.
- Although we shouldn’t mainly focus on selling products, you should aim to convert readers into prospects—or even better—customers. You can include CTAs to capture your audience’s email address to follow them up with email marketing. This is mainly done by offering a downloadable content (ebook, white paper, etc.), free-trial, or even free stuffs.
- Developing the content is just half the job done. No matter how good your content is, it won’t bring any value unless there’s an audience. Promote your content through various marketing tactics, and aim to get as many backlinks during the process. This will also improve your SEO results.
Make an Easier Checkout Process
While there are many different factors that can determine conversion rate, it is actually a common occurrence that the cause for a low conversion rate is simply because the checkout process is not optimized.
In the specific case of the e-commerce niche, we can avoid cart abandonment with an easy, optimized checkout process:
- The whole checkout process should be seamless, easy enough for anyone, and trustworthy. Include as little number of steps as possible.
- Make sure the whole checkout page is mobile-responsive and optimized. More and more people are purchasing from their phones, and you shouldn’t neglect this opportunity. Make sure all your buttons are easily clickable from a mobile device.
- Capture their contact information (email address) as early as you can in the checkout process. You can actually do this before showing any checkout forms. This way, if they abandon the cart, you can follow up with email marketing.
- You should provide a reliable real-time support that is easy to access during the whole checkout process. You can either provide a live chat feature here, or even implement chatbots.
- Don’t offer false promises, inform clear delivery times, stock levels, shipping costs, and other necessary information. You might also want to offer free shipping.
- Offer incentives and communicate it clearly within the review page(s). This is done to avoid cart abandonment.
Optimizing your checkout page is a pretty deep subject on its own, and there are still various ways to further enhance your checkout process. You might want to check out this guide to learn further.
Leveraging Social Proofs Effectively
People are now avoiding advertising all the time, and studies have suggested that people are more likely to purchase a product or service after reading a positive review, or after a recommendation from their peers.
This is often referred as “social proof”, a psychological phenomenon when we follow the action of others, assuming this specific action is the correct one.
There are at least six main types of social proof in the marketing environment:
- From existing customers: positive reviews, testimonials, case studies, etc.
- From big masses: using large crowds as social proof, for example, “100,000 customers have bought our product, are you ready to join?”
- From experts: reviews from experts and thought leaders of the industry, including the specific content discussing your product
- From influencers: celebrities that have bought your product/used your service, influencer mentions, etc.
- From colleagues: recommendation from your friends or using social media data (i.e. “100 of your friends have used our product”)
- Awards/certifications: credible awards and certifications can be a huge social proof
So, how can we leverage these social proofs to improve conversion rate? Here are some key principles:
- 63% of customers are more likely to purchase something online when the site displays reviews and ratings.
- You can use real-time stats as powerful social proofs. For example, showing how many people are currently on your site, how many people are currently making a purchase, and so on.
- If you are a B2B ecommerce site, displaying client logos can be very effective. Make sure, however, that it is well designed.
- Encourage existing customer to leave positive reviews and/or ratings. You can offer incentives from discounts to freebies to other special offers.
The main idea here is winning the trust of your audience, so avoid using exaggerated social proofs.
The key to marketing success for e-commerce is understanding your customer base: their behaviors, their needs, and the problems you/your product can address.
You should also adapt your marketing tactics according to the length of your sales cycle. If your sales cycle is long, for example, you should focus more on the lead nurturing process.
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Mike Khorev is an SEO expert and digital marketing consultant who helps small and mid-size businesses generate more leads, sales and grow revenue online. He offers expert advice on marketing your company the right way through performance-based SEO digital marketing, web design, social media, search engine marketing and many other online practices. Find him on LinkedIn and Twitter
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