ContentsSMS Marketing Strategy: EcommerceContent Marketing Strategies: EcommerceSEO Marketing Strategies: EcommerceEmail Marketing Strategies: EcommerceSocial Media Marketing Strategies: EcommerceSearch Engine PPC Ad Marketing Strategy: EcommercePartnership Marketing Strategies: EcommerceMisc. Marketing Strategies: EcommerceWhich Ones Will You Implement?
Marketing is tricky for any type of business.
There’s a lot of uncertainty, hypothesizing, testing, re-testing, re-hypothesizing, and starting it all over again.
And ecommerce is an industry in which marketing is vital—because the competition is so saturated.
How can your ecommerce business stand out? What can you do to help keep your business afloat?
Enter “Top Marketing Strategies: Ecommerce Edition.”
Here we’ll walk through 25 marketing strategies you can employ (some of them overlapping). You’re probably already doing several of these, but there may be many you haven’t tried yet.
Check them out below! Pick a few that appeal to you and test them out with your audience—see what resonates with them and what helps keep the revenue streams coming in.
Texting is a vital part of almost everyone’s lives—but, oddly, it’s not a part of everyone’s marketing strategy.
Despite read rates as high as 98%, many companies still haven’t jumped onto the texting bandwagon and taken advantage of that powerful opportunity for the growth of their business.
Texting provides a chance to get right in front of people through a medium which they’re checking constantly: their phones.
So how can you use SMS as a marketing tactic for ecommerce?
There are nearly unlimited ways, but here’s a sampling:
Big sale, today only! 25% off storewide! Check it out here: http://mbltxt.com/zVu
Hi there! We noticed you left a few items in your cart. Take 15% off if you check out now: http://mbltxt.com/zVs
If you haven’t tried out SMS yet as a part of your marketing strategy, we’d recommend you give it a shot try a free account here. It’s low-hanging fruit just ripe for the picking.
Content marketing involves creating relevant and useful content that’s not particularly salesy but is relevant and useful to your audience.
Content marketing helps you build authority with your audience and warms them up so that they’re more willing to say “yes” to engaging in business with your brand.
Specifics of content marketing will be discussed in the tips below, but some general principles include…
The point of content marketing is not to sell but to promote your brand by providing free value to your audience. So try to resist the urge to close a sale.
Different forms of content marketing may resonate differently with different audiences, or you may have a strength in creating a certain type of content.
(For example, if you are a good writer or have good writers on your team, you may be able to create good blog posts, or if you have a good public personality you may do well at video creation or podcasting).
We’ll discuss several different forms of content in further tips below.
This isn’t a marketing strategy that necessarily yields booming and obvious results right away.
It may take time, but the more your audience sees and engages with your brand in a way that they feel is valuable, they more likely they will purchase from you when the time is right.
The great thing about content marketing is that it can serve a dual purpose. It’s a strategy in and of itself, and it can also be repurposed to help in your other marketing efforts.
(For example, a link to a new blog post can be used in an email campaign, or a new video can be shared across social media channels.)
A specific form of content marketing is blog posts.
Quality blog posts will take your expertise, experience, and research and put it down in a way that’s accessible and appealing to your ecommerce audience.
And you don’t want to be half-hearted with this—go all in to create useful blog posts that provide real value to your target audience.
This involves the author (whether that’s you, someone on your team, or a hired copywriter) writing about topics they’re actually knowledgeable about and have at least some experience with. It often involves doing some research to find other sources that support your claims. It involves laying out your topic in a way that’s readable and matches the tone your audience expects.
And the great thing about blog posts is that they can often be repurposed to create other types of content (for example, ebooks, videos, webinar presentations, and educational emails).
How do you know what topics to write about?
One of the best ways to know what to write about is to figure out what people are searching for in Google (let’s be honest, other search engines aren’t as important). You can use tools like UberSuggest to help you see how many searches particular terms are getting, other suggested keywords to target, and what type of content is ranking highly for those terms.
You can use all of that info to get ideas for your own blog posts. (We’ll discuss more about blog posts and how they can relate to SEO under the “SEO” section below.)
Hosting webinars is another method of content marketing that allows you to engage with your audience in a dynamic and interactive way. It provides an opportunity to showcase your expertise, build credibility, and drive sales.
Here are a few ways you can effectively use webinars as a marketing strategy for your ecommerce business:
Choose topics that align with your target audience's interests and pain points. Offer valuable insights, actionable tips, and solutions to common challenges they face. By providing valuable information, you’ll establish yourself as an authority in your industry and gain the trust of potential customers.
To get the most attendance and engagement, promote your webinar across various channels. You can promote it via your website, blog, email list, and social media platforms to create buzz and generate interest. Use compelling copy and visuals that highlight the benefits participants will gain from attending the webinar.
With webinars, you can engage with your audience in real-time. Incorporate interactive elements such as polls, Q&A sessions, and live chat to encourage active participation. Address questions, provide personalized responses in order to foster a sense of community. By engaging with participants, you’ll create positive experiences that get people more used to your brand and increase the chances that they’ll purchase with you.
After the webinar, follow up with attendees and those who registered but couldn't make it. Send personalized thank-you emails, share the webinar recording, and provide additional resources or offers related to the webinar topic. Continue nurturing these leads through targeted email campaigns, providing relevant content, and staying connected on social media. That way, you’ll increase the likelihood of converting leads into customers.
Aside from webinars specifically, videos in general can be a valuable way to provide engaging content. Videos also have a lot of flexibility to be used to enhance your social media presence and blog posts. Additionally, you can use video compressor tools to optimize your videos for different platforms and ensure faster loading times without sacrificing quality. This way, you can deliver your message effectively while keeping your audience's attention.
Here are some different types of videos you can create to help your marketing efforts:
Podcasts are an audio form of content marketing that’s currently at the height of popularity. They’re easy to produce and, if your content is good and beneficial to your audience, can be a good way to provide value as an authority—that way, people are more likely to be willing to shell out their hard-earned cash at your ecommerce store.
Here are some steps you’ll want to consider if thinking about taking on a podcast:
Start by determining the focus and theme of your podcast. Choose a format that will resonate with your ecommerce target audience. Consider whether you want to host solo episodes, conduct interviews with industry experts, or facilitate discussions with relevant guests. This clarity will help you create valuable and engaging content that attracts and retains listeners.
Offer valuable insights, industry trends, and expert advice related to your target audience. Create episodes that address common challenges, share best practices, or provide actionable tips for your audience. You’ll position yourself as a trusted authority, increasing your ecommerce brand's reputation and attracting listeners who are interested in your products or services.
Invite industry experts, influencers, or relevant guests to be interviewed on your podcast. Their knowledge and expertise can add credibility to your episodes and attract a wider audience. Conduct thoughtful interviews, ask compelling questions, and encourage guests to share their insights and experiences.
You can take full advantage of content you’ve created or presented via blog posts, webinars, and videos by repurposing it into a podcast format. Repurposing help saves you time and lets you make full use of your efforts.
Yet another content marketing strategy is to create content-oriented lead magnets. As Investopedia states, “A lead magnet is a marketing term for a free item or service that is given away for the purpose of gathering contact details.”
Lead magnets can be any number of things, but some common content-oriented lead magnets are ebooks and white papers.
And, as with many other content marketing strategies, you can kill multiple birds with one stone by repurposing content that you’ve employed elsewhere. You can take a popular blog post or the script for a video or an interview from a podcast and turn it into an ebook or a white paper. Then you can give out that piece of content for free in exchange for contact info, so that you can start following up with new leads and get more eyes on your business.
In order to have a successful content-oriented lead magnet, there are a few ingredients:
As you know, SEO stands for “search engine optimization” and refers to structuring your website in a way that ranks highly on search engines.
This is a vital area of marketing in our digital age, and if you’re an ecommerce marketer with your own website, it’s something you should think about. (It’s less important if you host your ecommerce store on an ecommerce site like Shopify.)
In general, you want to be aware of the Google algorithms and how they may impact your ecommerce site’s rankings.
A few general things to keep in mind:
There’s so much more to get into, but those are a few starting points.
There are all kinds of specific SEO strategies, but we’ll just mention a couple below…
To rank more highly on Google, it’s best to publish quality content, and to publish it regularly and consistently.
If you can publish quality blog posts, videos, and podcast episodes to your site on a regular basis (see above sections under “Content Marketing Strategies,”) that can go a long way toward boosting your domain authority in Google.
(Not to mention, that content is valuable to use in other areas of marketing too, so it’s multipurpose.)
Here are some steps to help you find content to create and publish regularly:
Another important SEO tactic is link building. This is the process of getting people to link to your site and your content.
The best link building happens organically—as you create quality content relevant to your ecommerce target audience, people will (hopefully) share and link to it naturally.
However, there are some strategies you can employ on your end to help get more links as well, such as:
NOTE: you want to make sure not to participate in link buying or other questionable link building tactics. These tactics are not only often unethical but can damage your reputation with Google and actually prevent you from ranking.
Emails sent to a cold audience can help get your ecommerce brand in front of more eyes.
Although there are definitely wrong ways to go about a cold email campaign, it can be effective in winning over new leads and customers.
You’ll first need a way to obtain these cold leads. You don’t want to go about this in any sleazy or unethical way. Some services such as BuiltWith help you find audiences according to different criteria (such as software they may use).
You can find leads that you think may benefit from your products or services and then send content that is valuable and useful.
With a cold audience, you need to be more conscious about warming them up to your brand and what you offer, so provide real value and don’t jump right into the sale.
Success rate isn’t typically high for cold emails, but it can be a way to help you expand your reach.
Email newsletters allow you to stay front-and-center in your customers’ and leads’ inboxes and keep you at the forefront of engagement. They allow you to stay connected with your audience, nurture customer relationships, and drive repeat purchases.
You’ll want to make sure to provide real value to your subscriber list—value that gets them opening, reading, and staying subscribed to your newsletters.
You can share informative articles, product tutorials, industry news, expert insights, or exclusive promotions. Showcase your latest product releases or highlight customer success stories. Aim to educate, entertain, or inspire your audience, ensuring that each newsletter offers something worthwhile.
You’ll also want to make sure to use eye-catching images and graphical elements, since people tend to respond well to visuals. Sourcing impactful and visually appealing assets is vital. Websites like Freepik can be a resourceful place to find free vector images that can be used to echo your message and create engaging newsletters without incurring any additional costs.
Find the right balance with how often you should send your emails too—consider trying weekly, twice-monthly, or monthly frequencies and see how your audience responds.
And don’t forget to try out different kinds of subject lines to see what type of copy yields the most opens. After all, if no one opens your email, no one will see and engage with its content!
If you have quality and valuable content, you may be able to get some good engagement simply by posting and sharing on social media.
Granted, this is a hit-or-miss tactic and you never know what kinds of results you’ll see. But it’s free, and if you’re already creating content for other purposes, it’s not too much of a lift to simply share that content on social media as well.
Organic social sharing is particularly effective when you have quality visual content to go along with it, so it’s ideal if you can create gripping visuals to catch people’s interest.
The potential that social media provides is almost limitless.
But since organic sharing on social media is hit-or-miss, you may want to take advantage of social media by using PPC (pay-per-click) ads.
Social media ads allow you to target certain audiences and view analytics so you can test and see what’s working and what’s not.
It is a financial investment, so you’ll want to make sure you’re making wise choices as you go about your social media campaigns. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
We all know that Google is the king of the search engines. Therefore, getting quality ads on Google can help get a lot more eyes on your site and on your products.
A few things to keep in mind:
These same principles can apply to other search engine ad tools, such as Microsoft.
Since Google Ad management is complex, it may be worth it to outsource to a trusted marketing agency or employee with expertise and experience.
Partnerships can be a highly effective marketing strategy for ecommerce businesses, enabling you to tap into new audiences, increase brand awareness, and drive sales.
Collaborating with complementary businesses, influencers, affiliates, and industry experts can help expand your reach and establish your ecommerce business as a trusted authority in the market.
Here are some general guidelines when thinking about pursuing partnerships:
Start by identifying potential partners whose target audience aligns with yours.
Look for brands that offer complementary products or services to yours. Consider collaborators who have a significant following and influence within your target market. Look for opportunities to work together on marketing initiatives, cross-promotions, or joint campaigns that can benefit both parties.
Not all partnerships are made equal.
As your business grows, you may find that lots of people reach out to you asking for partnerships. Some of these may be beneficial, but don’t feel like you need to consider all of these potential collaborations.
You should pursue the collaborations that make the most sense for the business and will help you reach your ecommerce audience.
A sponsorship is a specific type of partnership in which one party typically pays or provides free products/services to another party in exchange for some sort of callout.
You might pay a partner for a mention in their newsletter or in their podcast or in a video.
A sponsorship is an easy way to get your name in front of a new audience of prospective customers.
You just want to make sure that the audience you’ll be reaching is significant enough and relevant, so that you get a good return on your investment.
A sponsorship is often an ongoing partnership, which sets it apart from simple media buying which is discussed below.
G2 defines media buying as “researching and buying ad space and time on traditional marketing channels (television, print, and radio) and digital advertising platforms (websites, social media, apps, and streaming) relevant to a company’s target audience.”
This is a type of partnership in which you pay for an advertisement. Unlike a sponsorship, it’s often simply a one-off engagement rather than an ongoing collaboration.
The cost for media buying is sometimes an upfront fee, sometimes a pay-per-click endeavor, and sometimes based on impressions your ad receives.
Another specific type of collaboration is an influencer partnership.
Using the popularity and influence of social media personalities, bloggers, and content creators in the ecommerce space can help you reach new audiences, build brand awareness, and drive sales. Collaborating with influencers allows you to tap into their loyal followers and use their credibility to promote your products effectively.
In order to go about this, you’ll need to find an influencer that has popularity among the target audience you’d like to reach. Then you’ll need to reach out to that influencer with a proposal that would be beneficial to them.
Sponsored posts are a common form of influencer collaborations. In these posts, influencers promote your products or services, usually in exchange for compensation or free products. Giveaways are another effective strategy where influencers can host contests or sweepstakes to encourage their audience to engage with your brand and products.
Some other forms of influencer marketing include webinar appearances, social media posts, podcast interviews, special events, appearances in ads, and affiliate marketing.
Collaborate with influencers to create content that aligns with their style and audience preferences, whether that’s product reviews, unboxing videos, tutorials, or lifestyle posts featuring what your business offers. Encourage them to highlight the unique features and benefits of your products in an organic and genuine way.
Remarketing or retargeting refers to engaging in marketing initiatives with people who have previously visited your ecommerce site or shown an interest in your products.
By displaying targeted ads or other targeted content to these individuals, remarketing helps keep your brand top of mind and encourages them to return and complete a purchase.
Here are some tips for going about remarketing:
Start by implementing pixel tracking on your website. Pixels are small snippets of code that collect information about users who visit your site. Platforms like Google Ads and Facebook Ads provide pixel codes that you can install on your website. These pixels track user behavior, allowing you to create specific audience segments for remarketing.
Segment your audience based on their interaction with your website or specific products. For example, you can create segments for users who added items to their cart but didn't complete the purchase, users who visited specific product pages, or users who abandoned the checkout process. By creating targeted segments, you can deliver customized ads or content based on their specific interests or actions.
Especially pertinent to ecommerce sites is the ability to engage in abandoned cart recovery. Create automated abandoned cart recovery campaigns to re-engage users who added items to their cart but didn't complete the checkout process. Send reminder texts, emails, and/or push notifications featuring the abandoned items and a clear call-to-action to complete their checkout.
Make sure to exclude users who have already made a purchase from your remarketing campaigns to avoid wasting ad spend or marketing efforts. Once a user converts, move them to a separate segment or exclude them from further remarketing efforts.
Affiliate programs are another way to be exposed to someone else’s audience.
This could in some cases be considered an official partnership. But it could in some cases be more of a referral program in which someone shares an affiliate link and receives commission from purchases made through the link.
If you’re thinking about developing an affiliate program, you’ll need to hash out details such as:
You can take advantage of third-party affiliate tools to help you manage all of this.
Common among retail-type businesses are loyalty programs that reward customers for making purchases.
Loyalty programs allow you to encourage repeat purchases without being “salesy”—to give your customers a tangible reason for coming back.
In traditional brick-and-mortar stores, this usually comes in the form of a “punch card,” but for ecommerce you can track purchases digitally. Once your customers make, say, 10 purchases, you can give them a free item or a discount on their next purchase.
You’ll want to make sure the incentive is strong enough that it’s motivating to your customer, but not too strong that you lose money for offering it.
When you have new products planned for release in your ecommerce store, you want to take full advantage of the opportunity to drive up sales via “product launches.”
A product launch is a strategy that hypes up soon-to-be-released products, building anticipation so that when the new product is actually released, there’s awareness and excitement for it.
You can build anticipation by using engaging copy in emails, social media posts, videos, podcasts (etc.) letting people know that something exciting is coming. You can set up a “wait list” that people can join in order to be the first to know when the product is released. You can go as all-out in the anticipation-setting as you’d like.
Just make sure the build-up isn’t anticlimactic. If you promise something exciting, make sure to deliver!
As a recent negative example of this, the amusement park Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri, went forward with a marketing campaign that was similar to a product launch. They built anticipation by letting people know that an exciting announcement was coming soon. They told people to tune in to a live video on social media for the big news. When the day came, customers tuned in to hear what the exciting announcement was—only to discover that one of the oldest and most beloved (albeit outdated) rides at the park was closing. The company tried to put a positive spin on it, but needless to say, many customers were very disappointed.
All of that to say, make sure your anticipation campaigns actually bring about something exciting for your customers and prospects.
Flash sales are time-limited promotions that create a sense of urgency and exclusivity among customers.
Flash sales are a popular ecommerce strategy because they employ the known effectiveness of scarcity to drive up sales quickly.
You’ll want to use flash sales (and all promotional discounts) with caution, however. If you run flash sales too often, people can start to expect them. And if people expect them, flash sales not only lose their sense of urgency but people will be hesitant to buy your products at full price because they’ll just “wait until it’s on sale.”
Although more common in areas such as SaaS and online coaching rather than ecommerce, offering free 1-on-1 consultations can be a way to provide white-glove service to customers and leads. The added personal touch could help solidify them as customers and keep them coming back.
How could this apply to ecommerce?
If you sell clothing, for example, you could allow prospective customers to jump on a video call to get advice on which of your clothing products fit their needs, tastes, and body type. Or if you sell jewelry, you could offer to help them walk through how to find the accessories they’re looking for on the website.
Of course, you would have to evaluate whether offering 1-on-1 consultations makes sense for your business and the type of products you sell, but it’s something to consider.
And there ya have it!
25 marketing strategies you can try out for your ecommerce business.
Which ones will you start implementing today?
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