Digital marketing is a must for any eCommerce business. It can help companies to increase traffic, leads and sales. This article will provide an essential guide to digital marketing for eCommerce businesses.
A proper eCommerce marketing strategy will turn strangers into loyal customers who will believe in your business and carry that shopping cart with your logo far too often.
We will cover the importance of digital marketing and four main aspects that eCommerce business owners should focus on social media marketing, search engine marketing, search engine optimization and email marketing.
Why is Digital Marketing Important for eCommerce?
Digital marketing is essential for eCommerce businesses because it can reach a larger audience. Digital marketing encompasses a wide range of online marketing activities, such as social media, search engine optimization, and email marketing, which result in the business getting more brand awareness, reach, leads, and sales.
By using digital marketing techniques, eCommerce businesses can improve their website’s visibility and traffic. This will result in more leads and sales for their business. Digital marketing is also cost-effective since companies can use many free tools to reach an audience of millions at no cost.
Digital marketing allows eCommerce businesses to connect with customers in real time, building trust and loyalty among customers. If done correctly, digital marketing helps eCommerce businesses increase traffic, leads & sales by allowing them to reach a broad range of target audiences in a cost effective manner.
Digital marketing Basic: How to Get Started
The assumption in this article will be you already have an eCommerce business and are looking to hone your digital marketing knowledge.
There are 4 basics of digital marketing that every eCommerce owner should be aware of, and in this article, we will be covering those.
- Social media marketing (SMM)
- Search engine marketing (SEM)
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Email marketing (EM? But no one calls it that)
Social media marketing gets you broad exposure across social media. In contrast, SEO optimizes your site, so it ranks higher in search engines like Google or Bing, while email marketing sends emails to potential buyers. Implementing these together in your digital marketing strategy gives you great exposure to potential customers and helps boost your conversion rates. Let's look into how these matter individually.
Social Media Marketing (SMM)
SMM is the process of promoting products and services through social media sites. SMM includes posting content on social media platforms, sharing links to relevant articles and pages, and interacting with other users. Social media sites include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and it is up to the eCommerce business owner to choose niche relevant social networks.
An eCommerce platform needs to implement two significant kinds of social media marketing to reach its ideal customer base.
Organic Social media marketing:
This is the process of promoting your brand and content through unpaid, organic means. An eCommerce store's social media interacts with popular social media networks to create product exposure. Whether it will be by hosting Facebook lives to a wide range of audiences, making a Facebook group for your current customers to engage with each other and buy more, or going on a rather public meme feud against another brand (Wendy's vs McDonald's).
The aim is to think of creative, exciting and interactive ways to make your eCommerce brand's social media presence more humanized. People like interacting with other people, not faceless companies. So please give them a face (or faces) to interact with. The goal here is to increase your brand awareness through accessible media, so the paid media can drive you the actual customers.
Create niche relevant posts that your ideal customer will find interesting and helpful. Get a social media management tool such as Buffer, Hootsuite and prepare a content calendar. Then post those posts across all your social platforms easily using these social media management tools. Ensure the customer engagement is high and the vibe on the comment section is positive towards the brand. Implement popular hashtags to reach more customers, host competition, giveaways, feature customer reviews, engaging post videos, etc., to get as many prospective customers as possible.
Paid Social Media Marketing:
This is the process of paying for ads on popular social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram & Pinterest. The goal is to get more eyes on your products and drive potential customers back to your website. It would help if you had a clear strategy for paid advertisements because, unlike organic marketing, this costs money and usually a lot. Costs depend on whether it's a banner ad, search ad, google shopping ad or partner ad, and eCommerce marketers should be careful about choosing the suitable medium.
These posts should have a clear goal in mind, and the content needs to be attention grabbing and compel the customer to take the first step in the customer journey, visit your eCommerce website. Compare your ads against the competitor's to see the results the campaign should expect. Always make sure that the targeting is done correctly regardless of what social network advertisement is done. The goal of this medium is always customer acquisition unless you are a million dollar company that can burn cash for brand awareness. Do A/B testing, set up custom audiences, custom ad bids and use all the targeting capabilities that each social media platform offers to get the most out of your advertising budget.
Always remember, this costs a lot of money and do the appropriate research before just burning the cash with no results. Start by basing the expectations on competitors' engagement rates but as your data keeps rising, compare it with the past campaigns. Lastly, set up pixel retargeting for every website to ensure no potential customer leaves your ecosystem.
Search Engine Marketing:
This is the process of putting up ads for an eCommerce website to appear as the top result for specific keywords in search engines such as Google, Bing etc. The goal here is obvious; you want people looking for products similar to what you're selling to find your website first and, above all, competitors. While search engine optimization is part of SEM, that will be the next topic, and in this topic, we will only be looking at paid search engine marketing.
SEM is the process of bidding on keywords related to your products and services on search engines like google and bing. You then create ads around those keywords and target those people who are most likely to buy what you're selling. This is a form of paid advertising, where you pay for each time someone clicks on your ad. For example, a pet food ad can be targeted so whenever a millennial who lives in a zip code with income above $80,000+ searches for pet food, your ad will be displayed.
The main things to take care of for SEM are the headlines, audience targeting, the landing page the visitors will land on. Like paid social media marketing, this media costs money and sometimes a lot based on your niche (we are talking up to $150 a click if you are in the insurance niche), so it is essential to do all the above mentioned things correctly. Always compare the profit you will get from each sale against the cost of launching SEM ads for each sale.
Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization is optimizing for search engines such as Google, Bing etc. This ensures that your website ranks higher on these search engines, thus you get more visitors to your eCommerce website. There are two types of SEO techniques - Onsite & Offsite SEO techniques. Onsite SEO techniques focus on the content inside your website, while Offsite SEO techniques focus on getting backlinks from other websites.
The main aim of content marketing is to improve the visibility of a website so that it appears as the top result for specific keywords in search engines. The higher your website ranks, the more visitors you will get to your eCommerce website. It is essential to do proper keyword research and identify the important keywords related to your products to achieve this. This is a long-term process, and it may take some time to see results. Having a steady content calendar with very niche relevant keywords combined with proper on-page, off-page, and technical SEO can get the eCommerce website unlike any other.
The central aspect for SEO is keyword research, where you should find low competition keywords that your domain can rank based on its authority. Tools like AHREFS and SEMRush are the biggest ones that do this. Then write a keyword and user focused content that is competitive with others, use tools like Frase to analyze your content against others. The next step will be to get as many social shares and backlinks as possible so you can rank your content.
All the above mentioned techniques in this digital marketing guide bring traffic to your website. However, not all of them are prepared to purchase right away. Digital marketing for eCommerce through email is a way to get these consumers back and re-engage them with your products. This can be done by sending emails promoting your product or just informative content related to your website's niche.
Build your email list on eCommerce email marketing platforms such as Klayvio and start building your least. Use popups, sidebar forms, offer forms, coupon wheel, or any solution, but collect the user leads. This allows the eCommerce website to keep nurturing those emails and send them product sale info every often without paying egregious costs of paid SMM and SEM.
Use the same tool Klayvio to setup automations, send newsletters and track every user behaviour on the eCommerce site so you can select best email sequence to choose. Email marketing is still the most profitable form of marketing and eCommerce businesses need to be able to utilize it to avoid leakage of traffic that come through other medias.
Digital marketing is a very vast and complex field which requires a lot of knowledge, experience and tools to do it correctly. This digital marketing guide for eCommerce provides an overview of the most important aspects that should be focused on when doing digital marketing for eCommerce website. Following this guide will help increase traffic to your website as well as convert more sales.
Despite all this an eCommerce website must have a proper checkout process, clean user experience and analytics tool such as google analytics to make decisions if the implemented digital marketing plan has been working or not.
Digital marketing for eCommerce can be a bit challenging at times but with proper knowledge and practice it is possible to do very well. If you would like professionals to take care of this for you, contact us so we can prepare the best eCommerce marketing strategy to reach your target audience.