Becoming an eCommerce Digital Marketing Expert
Have you been wanting to take the leap and convert your brick-and-mortar shop into an online store? If so, you probably noticed that there are dozens of eCommerce marketing automation solutions, agencies, and platforms on the web promising to put your business in the best position possible to sell, while helping you go to market with the easiest transition. Shopify and BigCommerce may be just the solutions you have been searching for.
Retailers worldwide have been suffering heavy pain points this year, which is why platforms like Shopify and BigCommerce’s main priority is helping brick-and-mortars pivot toward online selling. They offer numerous resources to help transition some of the key physical aspects of your in-person store to your online product pages and create astounding eCommerce ads. With their help, together we will learn how to ease the move to the eCommerce digital marketing world and begin marketing to keep valued customers coming back.
Finding the right tools to work with and learning how to utilize them to their full potential takes time. However, there are three main points we will cover in today’s article to help with your approach.
1. Preliminaries for the launch
Choosing a domain name
Prior to launching your website, you will want to take care of some key preparations. Choosing the name of your domain may sound as easy as selecting the name for your brick-and-mortar shop, however, there is much more to consider in the eCommerce digital marketing world. Driving digital traffic to your store organically is something that takes time, effort, and a great deal of SEO research.
You will want to choose a domain name that is easily discoverable in the online world as the digital market is competitive but don’t forget to keep it catchy and appealing to your customers. BigCommerce advises opting for something more “SEO-friendly” as it not only allows you to upgrade your current name but can also help you reach a larger audience that will increase your ranking in the long run.
By selecting a domain name that is highly optimized for driving organic traffic and increasing your quality score, you will be on the fast track to creating buzz and brand awareness around your new eCommerce store.
Selecting your store’s products
When making the shift to eCommerce retail, your best bet when starting will be to select your best-selling products. According to BigCommerce, the best approach is to narrow down your inventory to approximately 100 of your best selling items initially, and then expand over time. Of course, as you continue to digitally grow and excel, you will add on products and create eCommerce ads based on your learnings from reviews and trends in the market.
Although it is important to keep in mind your best selling items in the brick-and-mortar world, you will now be accessible to a much larger audience. Consider what the national eCommerce demands are rather than focusing solely on previous customers and experiences.
Once you start seeing what products are succeeding in comparison to others you can make predictions for how additional products will perform. With these results only then should you respectively begin adding and reorganizing categories and subcategories.
Determine shipping costs and payment methods
As a new eCommerce store not only will you want to determine shipping costs and payment methods but additionally you should research your competitors. There are about 1.3 million eCommerce companies in the US and Canada alone, so taking the time to review competitors’ product pricing can be helpful in effectively and accurately pricing your products. While you may be selling products at an appropriate price for the location and customer base of your brick-and-mortar shop, this does not account for tax, shipping charges, and service fees that are now to be contemplated for your new business model.
It is safe to say that no one likes unexpected fees at the end of the online checkout. Flat rate shipping, as well as certain discounts for customers who are spending over a certain sum, can be an effective and useful tool to win over your new customers and target audience. ”It also helps with organic advertising in SERPs (search engine results page) as a quick callout to ‘Free Shipping’. Consider a meta description that says ‘Free Shipping over $100’ at the end.”
When selecting your payment methods, consider not only what is easiest to set up in your online store but more importantly what will accommodate a wider audience. Methods like PayPal and Apple Pay are great options to have as they will effectively increase the number of people able to purchase from your store. Shopify has all of these payment options and more, making it easy for you to set up and easier for your customers to check out and return at leisure.
2. Optimizing your store
Choose a functional design scheme
When designing your page title tags and meta descriptions remember to keep them short and sweet. Keep SEO in mind and over time you will be able to improve the descriptions whilst your site is in action.
“Did you know that using original photos rather than stockpile can give you a much-needed SEO boost?” According to BigCommerce, if you use a camera or smartphone you can take professional-grade product photography for your store that will be more appealing to your target consumer.
Over time you will optimize your online store more and more, so don’t be scared to make mistakes with title tags and meta descriptions. These things take time to hone in on and eventually after playing around and figuring out what your customers like it will become second nature.
Develop quality SEO content
Evolving quality content is a process; it merely does not occur overnight. You must find and qualify your keywords to maintain your quality score on Google. The key to successful content is creating it for not only your readers but for Google. Consider the topics wisely and evolve your stories around the SEO and keywords that will ultimately improve your quality score and boost your ranking.
Pay close attention to what your competitors are coming out with to make sure you are on the right track. You want to add value to your website and focus on the trends and the times. As we know and will continue to be challenged daily, Google is highly competitive. Create meaningful content that attracts readers and brings them useful and clever information in a creative and SEO oriented way.
The more content you have the more traffic you will drive, but bear in mind that quality still trumps quantity every time. Keep tabs on what your customers express interest in through social media channels, and by having open lines of communication.
Create a valued customer service plan
While the content and the design of your website are some of the best ways to optimize your online store, it may be easy to neglect how you communicate with your customers. A respected customer service plan can set you apart from your competitors.
Even if your products are selling like hotcakes and loved across the board, a bad customer service encounter can taint the overall experience your store has provided to a shopper. Maintaining quality relationships with your customers can lead to repeat buyers.
Additionally, a good customer service system can lead to an increase in conversions. By utilizing a proactive live chat you can see results in your rate of conversions. About 79 percent of consumers are using live chat, meaning it has one of the highest satisfaction rates in all of customer service strategies. Convenience is key when providing a pleasant experience for your shoppers.
3. Marketing your store
Creating and executing your campaign
Although creating the ideal business strategy, design templates and fully optimizing your store is the necessary component to growing a following, a solid marketing plan is most crucial in getting your eCommerce store off the ground.
Marketing your eCommerce site and creating quality eCommerce ads is something that requires a lot of SEO and PPC monitoring. If you are unsure exactly what your target audience is searching for on the web it could be a real challenge to drive traffic organically.
The eCommerce marketing automation system, Okiano creates campaigns based on who you are targeting through the characteristics that define them and their location, which will undoubtedly create some of the most descriptive campaigns, saving you much of your valuable time and money. The platform is known for its AI advertising as well as machine learning technology to automate the best campaigns for your specific needs and target audience.
Building your team in-house vs. agency
If you are just starting it can be easy to want to resort to an eCommerce marketing agency to help with all of your digital marketing needs. However, if you are a smaller sized business then we recommend doing your marketing until you have experienced some sort of online recognition, ranking, and growth in sales.
Since you will be attempting eCommerce digital marketing for the first time you may not be caught up on the demands and national market trends. Interacting with your customer base and putting a large emphasis on social media will quickly enhance your knowledge about current consumers’ wants and needs.
Creating a digital marketing strategy through your interactions is crucial in understanding the industry and how your target audience thinks. As tempting as working with an eCommerce marketing agency sounds, it is better to hold off and engage with your customers as much as possible learning the online world and bettering your understanding, campaigns, and content in the long run.
Tactics and tools to consider
When the time comes to consider what channels, tactics, and tools you would like to use in your marketing efforts, it is important to remember that networks like Google will be ones to pay the closest attention to.
Follow Okiano Marketing in our next article, covering the ins and outs of the top 5 eCommerce digital marketing strategies to help your eCommerce shop prepare for the holiday season. In this article, we will cover the competitiveness of selling products online and how to advertise and promote your business through different marketing tools on the web