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Best Practices in E-commerce Marketing That Will Increase Sales

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Ivanna Shepetyuk
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Do you feel good when you browse an online store? A feeling of comfort from a well-developed UX-design, pleasure from an attractive UI-design, a feeling that someone cares what kind of reaction the user of the service will have?

In many ways, this feeling is provided by fruitful work on a marketing strategy. Fairly low barriers to entry into this market are increasingly raising the level of competition, therefore, it is necessary to apply the best practices.

With the new “competition”, only those who do everything possible for their client stand out from the crowd. It is not surprising that these same brands succeed in turning a visitor into a buyer, and then even into an evangelist of the brand.

And in fact, this is not only about the site (this is only a small fraction of success). Regardless of the type of retail product you have, you need a well-thought-out marketing plan to constantly increase your sales.

Remember that there is no magic wand. The user always distinguishes a mediocre store from a quality one, because you need to know what makes an e-commerce service successful.

Define a sales cycle

Every business is unique. How long do you think it will take before a customer makes a purchase on your site? Knowing all the steps a potential buyer goes through your sales process is very helpful. Why? You can better see all the pros and cons, which will help in optimizing the marketing strategy.

Buyer Life Cycle Best Practices in E-commerce Marketing

Buyer Life Cycle. Source of the image

If you do not know how much time you need to spend to complete the sales cycle on your site, it will even be difficult for you to determine the platforms for advertising. Defining a sales cycle will require research and testing. Only then can you move on to strategy and point ideas.

Optimize your checkout process

You can spend a lot of time to get a loan of trust from the client. You can spend a lot of resources to attract users to the service. But all this is pointless with the careless setup of ordering.

All in one. The ideal layout is the ability to go through all the stages of the purchase on one page. If this is not possible, simplify the transitions. The more time a client spends searching for a button, the faster he loses the desire to buy.

Useful Description. Regardless of the product, there should always be a high-quality and relevant description. Do not waste time on eloquence. E-commerce is when dry but accurate facts are needed. Materials, size, key features, production approaches, and other similar information will be useful to the buyer. So he can understand exactly what he pays for.

description Best Practices in E-commerce Marketing

How to create the correct description. Source of the image

Show shipping cost. The client does not like to know about the huge cost of delivery at the end of the order process. Do not play with this customer emotion and show the appropriate amount at the beginning of registration.

In addition to cost data, you must immediately give an idea of when the goods will arrive or any other delivery details that you need to know about.

Tell us about the forms of payment. Imagine that you have already chosen a product, provided contact details and information for delivery, are ready to pay, but you can’t for one reason only. The store simply does not allow you to pay in the way that is available to you.

How do you like this user experience? It is highly likely that you will tell your friends about it or leave a corresponding comment. The reputation of such a store will immediately fall.

Therefore, give clear information about payment methods before choosing a product. If none of them suits the client, then in any case you will not convert him into a real buyer. But with this approach, provide him with a useful user experience and not get negative feedback.

Do these approaches seem obvious to you? Browse at least 10 different e-commerce sites. About 60% do not comply with these requirements. That is why they did not become the most successful in their niche.

Site updates

Everything is very simple: the older the site, the more it looks like spam. Moreover, the element of admiration is lost and the client will want to experience something new. At first, he will just visit other services several times. After a while you lose the buyer.

In this case, we are not talking about user experience. After all, it can provide different services. Everything depends on the interface.

Design trends are constantly changing and must be followed. If the site does not correspond to what is popular now, the client simply will not feel comfortable. He doesn’t want something different from his daily life.

Therefore, work with the site and bring freshness to it. Let the buyer see that you care not only about the quality of the goods and the speed of sales, but also about emotions. Updating the site, you will update the "Wow effect." As you know, it plays a very important role in marketing effectiveness.

Content marketing

An online store should regularly consider creating a blog. What for? This is one of the few ways to constantly communicate with customers on different topics. This is an opportunity to increase activity on the site. Accordingly, this is the way to higher positions in search engines.

Content Best Practices in E-commerce Marketing

Benefits of Content Marketing for E-Commerce. Source of the image

If you have no ideas about content, see how other E-commerce sites do it. What can be written, what information is interesting? If you previously had a dedicated blog, integrate it into your online store.

Do not forget that in addition to the blog there are many other types of content marketing:

  • launching a podcast to share experience and develop the community;
  • creating guest posts on other sites and relevant blogs;
  • providing links in articles on information portals.
Content marketing is one of the best ways to become a viral project in the head of a potential buyer and search engine at the same time.

Use of social networks

Speaking about the best practices of E-commerce marketing, you cannot pass by social networks. Today it is one of the most cost-effective advertising platforms. If you already have accounts in the main social networks, you have already taken the first step. But in today's competitive marketplace, having accounts and interesting publications is no longer enough. You need to create a marketing campaign.

A good starting point is Facebook. You can focus on the most suitable target audience and link to specific pages of your site. One of the best practices for using Facebook as an advertising platform is to create landing pages for an online store.

SMM Best Practices in E-commerce Marketing

SMM Benefits. Source of the image

It is important to understand that the home page or, for example, the About Us section is not targeted. It’s best to create a landing page for the product you are promoting. It’s important to ensure that the ad and the landing page match. This means that they should have similar information and a consistent look.

You can also include videos in advertisements. As you know, videos today are one of the best types of content to attract the attention of customers. If you show a potential buyer a short video about the value of a product, you can quickly and effectively express your point of view. It is much faster and more informative than text or pictures.

It’s best to show through the video exactly how the product works. This will cut off most of the questions from a potential buyer, and therefore will bring him closer to placing an order.

Man to man is a friend

People tend to trust people like them. In the context of online stores, it will be enough just to have a customer base. Make the potential buyer see the people behind your brand. This is not about the team, employees and co-founders, but about the same customers.

Gather feedback and images of regular customers. Communicate with the audience, respond to tweets and comments. You need to be active. As long as there is a response, there is a sense of reality. Having spent time communicating with customers and providing feedback, they will understand that you are caring and that there really are people behind the brand who are working hard to ensure the best possible experience.

You can attract several famous personalities (today this approach is known as influencer marketing). A person is inclined to repeat after his idol. Therefore, attracting an actor, athlete or, for example, a blogger to your marketing campaign is always a great move to increase your reputation.

Important. When creating media content, you need to abandon stock photos and royalty-free footages. The modern buyer is able to quickly distinguish reality from standard pictures. If he notices that the advertisement is made from photos downloaded on the stock, the credit of trust will be wasted.

Referral marketing

This is a more optimized version of social advertising. In this case, you deliberately influence the process of transmitting information “by word of mouth” using some kind of encouragement for recommendations and pressing the “Share with Friends” button.

The main task when using this approach is the availability of quality service. Users will not want to share something bad with friends, even if they are encouraged for it. But as soon as a person gets even just good experience (not to mention excellent), he is inclined to boast of it on social networks and in real life.

referral Best Practices in E-commerce Marketing

The impact of referral marketing on sales. Source of the image
The essence of referral marketing is creating an incentive. It completely depends on your context (type of store, industry, product, price, differences from competitors). What incentives can there be?
  • discount on next purchase;
  • free test drive;
  • gift for new acquisitions.
These are just examples. It all depends on the type of business and your creativity.

But, the referral program itself needs to be promoted no less than the product. If people don’t know about it, they won’t share their experience with your online store so often. Therefore, share the launch of the referral program on social networks, invite regular customers to participate, notify about it on the website’s home page.

Referral marketing is a very effective way to promote in the field of E-commerce, but today it is still underestimated by many platforms. Therefore, this is your chance to quickly beat competitors.

Create a mobile app

How many times have you viewed the site through a smartphone, and then went to the computer to order a product? If you want to be ahead, then consider creating an application for your e-commerce site. There are several benefits:
  • they load faster than the site;
  • the customer will always be in one click from viewing products;
  • you can send push notifications about promotions or new arrivals;
  • the client will be able to place an order at any time, even if he will be offline (the implementation will be automatic as soon as access to the network).
Today you need to create a mobile application as soon as possible. Even if you are just starting your journey in e-commerce, you should already try to allocate funds to create an application.

Such a move instantly brings any online store to the top of the ratings. Mobile app is the best user experience.

To ensure good functionality and performance of the software product, it is better to contact professional developers. The Merehead team has thousands of hours of work on mobile apps. Our developers monitor trends in the field of E-commerce and implement best practices in the process of writing code.

A wish list

How often do you come across a situation that the site does not have the right product in stock? Or do you have insufficient funds? Or do you just have no way to place an order right now?

As a rule, people forget that they saw the desired product on a particular site. At the first opportunity, they buy it in another store. But this can be avoided.

Create the Add to Wish List button. Now you always know what your potential buyer wants. Firstly, this is useful information for analyzing and optimizing a marketing strategy.

Secondly, this is a way to retain a customer. As soon as something happens with the desired product (discount, appearance in the warehouse, the possibility of testing, etc.), send a notification to the user. He will remember that he wanted to buy this product from you. Seeing some unique opportunity, the client will definitely go to action.

Which approach is best?

What is the most effective strategy? What should be used for a particular online store? Which approach will work in my case?

Such questions are constantly asked by e-commerce owners. And to write now that we know the answers would be wrong.

Today, there are almost nowhere such a thing as "best." For example, the top ten manufacturers of automobiles or clothing will always provide equally good results. What will be better for some will be worse for others.

«One person’s best marketing strategy – catastrophe for another».

Advertising moves depend on your industry and product. In addition, it is important to consider the habits of potential buyers. In some cases, it is necessary to completely ignore established rules.

The formula for the best approach is analysis, testing, experimentation and creativity. To find certain practices that will work “timeless”, you need to spend a lot of resources and effort. As a result, the best approach will be completely individual for your online store.

Best Practices in E-commerce Marketing That Will Increase Sales key takeaways:
  1. Define a sales cycle
  2. Optimize your checkout process
  3. Site updates
  4. Content marketing
  5. Use of social networks
  6. Man to man is a friend
  7. Referral marketing
  8. Create a mobile app
  9. A wish list
  10. Which approach is best?
Merehead does professional development of Best Practices in E-commerce Marketing. If you have questions, contact us for a free consultation.

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