It’s true that starting an eCommerce venture is not easy and running a successful website is even harder.
But does that mean you should give up on your dreams of possibly launching the next Amazon?
Of course not!
It is hard, but not impossible to achieve your goals if you set your focus on it.
Today, in this article we’re going to share some practical tips and suggestions on how to successfully launch your eCommerce website and run it.
Top 12 Practical Marketing Tips To Launch Your eCommerce Website
Every eCommerce website wants to increase its conversions and generate record-breaking sales. Even though you’ve put up a basic strategy to run your online store, it could still be challenging for you to understand which marketing tactics you should try for maximum conversions.
Here is a blueprint for you to follow. Try implementing these suggestions over the next couple of weeks and see which of these tactics would work to drive more sales.
- Research, research, and research!
This point cannot be stressed enough. In fact, it’s one of the most important action items that could determine the success of your eCommerce store. Once you’ve decided on your product list, you need to check out what your competitors are doing in this space. Here are a few things for you to consider:
- Are they selling a single item of multiple products
- What’s their current business model?
- What are their preferred social media channels?
- Which target market are they catering to?
- What strategies do they use to push sales?
- Build your online store
Not here is the thing. An eCommerce store is very different from your usual website or blog. You need to choose preferred eCommerce hosting platforms, such as Shopify to set up your store easily. The best part about Shopify is that it comes with a lot of predefined templates that you can easily get started with. You can choose a theme based on the preferences of your target audience and think of a name that is easy to remember.
When your website is ready, try it out with a test order just to ensure everything is working perfectly. Involve as many steps as required to complete the online purchase and do not ask for any extra information during the checkout process.
- Optimize your customer journey
Did you know, on an average index, 66% of customers will leave your online store without buying anything? And now calculate how much money you will make if you were able to reduce the frequency of abandoned carts and convert these leads into customers. You’ll be able to do that by optimizing your customer journey.
Here are a few ways how you can do it:
- Reduce the loading time of your online store
- Create limited period offers
- Launch an email campaign for abandoned carts
- Keep the navigation between the store and the product pages simple
- Offer multiple payment methods/options
- Sacrifice on gathering data by offering guest checkout options
- Enhance your store optimization
Now you’ve successfully set up your store, it’s time to optimize your website. And there are quite a few ways to do it:
- Determine the most common words that your target audience is using to find you. You can find the best keywords by:
- Using keyword tools, such as Google’s Keyword Planner or SEMrush
- Refine the list of your target keywords by using low-competition keywords
- Research on your competitors’ SEO strategies
- Focus on creating useful and optimized product pages by:
- Writing in-depth descriptions for your products
- Incorporating customer reviews
- Ensuring all your out-of-stock product pages are live
- Increasing your Click-through-rate (CTR) with rich snippets
- Write unique metadata for each of the pages
- Create an intuitive navigation bar
- Create search-engine-friendly URLs
- Improve the usability of your website
- Update your inventory
Best-selling products tend to fade away real quick. The inventory needs to be regularly updated. Consider looking for new product ideas and that will keep the traffic flowing to your online store. You should never depend on a few products to drive your sales. New product arrivals always excite the customers so keep introducing new products or consider enhancing the experiences of the older products. You may also consider testing product ideas on Google Trends.
- Engage with your audience through live engagement marketing
In today’s online world, engaging with your customers on a regular basis is almost mandatory. There are multiple ways to do this, through emails or blog content. But all of them do not offer real-time value. To ramp your engagement efforts and generate more sales, you should think of ways to connect with your audience in real-time, for example, live engagement marketing.
Unlike your usual video content, live engagement offers to broadcast your target audience in real-time. They provide a great opportunity for your prospective customers to ask questions in real-time and get to know the real people behind the brand, which also establishes a sense of trust and confidence.
- Offer more personal interaction through email marketing
It’s just not enough to capture email addresses. You need to make sure that your email subscribers are kept updated through useful content from time to time. Consider the following occasions to enhance your email marketing game:
- Send Welcome emails as soon as any subscriber makes a purchase
- Offer exclusive coupon codes
- Send regular updates on new product launches, new discount offers, and more
- Send a personalized note thanking them for considering your brand for a purchase
- Share useful information about their recent purchases
- Gather feedback about how you can improve the overall experience if they have recently visited your website
Here is a brilliant example of how you can personalize your email marketing campaigns. Uncommon Goods sent a message to their subscribers reminding them about Father’s Day and also offered a solution for the procrastinators.
- Evaluate your brand health
You’ve done what it takes to set up the store and run it. You’ve mostly been getting great responses from your advertising campaigns but still not very happy with the overall conversions. Not sure what’s missing? This is where brand tracking comes into the picture. You can take the help of a brand tracking template to understand the attitude of the customers towards your brand and that will provide you with actionable insights which will help you influence their decisions. Some of the useful metrics that you can derive from a brand survey are:
- Current market share
- Recognizability of the brand compared to other similar brands in the market
- Recent media impact on your brand health
- Net Promoter Score (NPS)
- Key purchase drivers and purchase intent
- Level of consumer comprehension around your brand messaging
- Create a robust content marketing plan
Every eCommerce brand should consider implementing a robust content marketing strategy to engage with their target audience. If you’re already creating content, then consider adding a blog to your eCommerce store website. Besides a blog, here are a few other ways of creating content:
- Start a podcast to build a community who are interested to explore what you have to offer
- Guest post on different websites to build awareness about the usefulness of your products and also to generate backlinks
- Create long-form content, such as guides or manuals to help your customers use your product more effectively
One of the very unusual brands that used content marketing to increase their sales was River Pools and Spas which earned them kudos from the New York Times. They offered a detailed and downloadable guide on their homepage to their customers describing how to choose the right fiberglass pool.
- Create a reward program for your loyal customers
Focusing on retaining customers is a great way to increase your eCommerce sales. According to a study by Stitch Labs, 22% of a retailer’s revenue is generated through return customers. And the best way to reward your returning customers is through a loyalty program.
There are different ways in which you can benefit from these programs. They serve as an additional incentive for customers to make a purchase from your store and they also keep your brand on top of their minds while referring products to families and friends.
You can definitely choose how you want to reward your customers, either based on the frequency of their purchases or through specific actions. For example, you can design a point-based reward program that will reward your customers with free coupons that can be redeemed for discounts or free shipping. Another good example is that of the outdoor brand, REI. They charge their customers a one-time fee of $20 and in return, they gain access to all their exclusive online sales and events.
Running an eCommerce business is not going to be simple but now that you have a list of tactics, improve your chances of success by implementing them. By the end of the sprint review them to understand which of them worked best for you and then consider modifying them as per your requirements.
Feel free to share in the Comments section below what are some of the advice you implemented to launch your eCommerce store.
Atreyee Chowdhury works full-time as a Learning Experience Designer and is passionate about writing. She has helped many small and medium-scale businesses achieve their content marketing goals with her carefully crafted content that is both informative and engaging. She lives in Bangalore, India with her husband. In her free time, she loves to read, experiment with different cuisines, travel, and explore the latest content marketing and L&D trends. You can reach her on Linkedin or write to her at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your content marketing plans and requirements.