Ecommerce has become one of the most important segments on the Internet today. It has become popular because it is quick and easy, providing an accessible way for customers to find what they need without leaving the comfort of their homes. Online shopping even allows consumers to buy rare items that may not be available in the area or products which are hard to find in a particular geographical location. Ecommerce is an avenue for opening new doors for consumers and a way for brands to expand their customer base.
Every eCommerce business needs to have a well-planned strategy that will include an action plan and key performance indicators (KPIs). If a business just starts off without having a detailed plan, the chances of success can be very low. On the other hand, having a well-planned strategy can help overcome the inevitable challenges that will be faced along the way. The aim of every eCommerce store is to increase its sales and revenue and become profitable as soon as possible.
After Covid-19 there has been a significant increase in competition in the online space. Covid-19has made people shift their habits of shopping from brick-and-mortar stores to online stores and has also provided consumers the option to choose from a wider range of products. Nowadays, customers will not only look at the price but also check for discounts and deals before making a purchase decision. This means that any eCommerce store with a good strategy can experience an increase in revenue and sales if implemented correctly.
An ecommerce with a structured strategy can end up seeing an improvement in revenue and in sales. A good eCommerce strategy needs to be built before the online store is set up; that includes planning which niche to target, ways in which the product will be marketed and how much return on investment (ROI) can be expected. A good eCommerce strategy should allow room for growth and the ability to thrive over time, not just in the beginning of your ecommerce site.
The aim of this article is to discuss new strategies that focus mainly on small eCommerce stores so that they can compete in the face of fierce competition. Since small eCommerce stores can fail quite easily, having an overall business plan is essential. Following are some of the strategies that can be followed for a successful eCommerce store that can have chances of succeeding:
Cater to a niche and target it. The aim should be to focus only on the people in that segment. Think of it as a mini goal. Once a certain percentage of the audience in that target market is captured, then your goal could be to target the next small audience and build your presence there. When you target a specific market or niche, it makes sense that your product could be tailored for their needs. This is because the entire marketing effort will go into one small bubble instead of being all over the place. High-budget campaigns may not always reach potential customers.
The aim is to have organic growth since cash flows are very tight in early eCommerce start-ups and as a result, the marketing budgets are not very huge. Start-ups need to focus on brand building and should make word-of-mouth marketing their main source of generating revenue, which is why the first strategy is to target a small audience.
The pricing strategy needs to be designed keeping in mind the competitors. Remember the aim of your eCommerce store is to try and sell more products/services than your competitors. However, eCommerce sites need to keep in mind that certain profit margins are required to support the eCommerce store. Good eCommerce stores will be able to come up with pricing strategies that will attract the customers and result in profitability after a certain period of time.
A sound strategy includes planning how much return on investment (ROI) can be expected after a certain period. An ecommerce store which keeps a monthly check as to how close it is from achieving the set ROI target is the one most likely to see an improvement in revenue and in sales.
Marketing strategies need to be planned out before the website is made live. A good marketing plan needs to include how you are going to promote your site, where you are going to promote your site and what type of marketing needs to be used. Remember you can sell effectively without being too pushy or using gimmicks. By simply answering questions your target audience is asking, the consumers will see reasons to buy your product because you are giving away valuable information. It is important that an eCommerce store keeps itself up to date regarding the latest trends in online marketing ensuring that they will not fall behind and become irrelevant.
Promotional strategies include coupons, discounts and free shipping. Through promotions customers tend to pay more attention to learn more about what at an ecommerce store is offering. A good way for an eCommerce store to increase revenue and overall sales is to have promotions at regular intervals.
You want to gain the trust of your customers. Shoppers are often cautious about buying products from an unsecure website so make sure that the website has an SSL certificate. This will reassure your customers that their personal information is safe with you and a security breach is out of question.
A good social media strategy needs to be in place for an eCommerce store since it can help with brand awareness and spread information about new products, deals and offers through regular posts on different platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Make sure to find the one platform that works best for you and focus on that social media platform instead of getting mediocre reach by being all over the place.
The importance of Google analytics cannot be emphasized enough. It helps eCommerce stores monitor their overall traffic and take actions accordingly. The data from Google Analytics should be effectively used to plan out promotions for the eCommerce stores and they can easily gauge what's working for them and what’s not.
You can create a simple website using any of the popular content management systems such as WordPress. However, it is always better to invest in a good technical team who will not only develop a customized website according to your needs and keep the site up and running but also make sure that the website is up to date with the latest features. Investing in website development will pay off as seen in our next point below.
Having a good eCommerce store design is also important since it will make your website stand out from your competitor’s sites. The website needs to be simple yet attractive and be able to convey the right message to customers. A good eCommerce store design should also have a mobile version which will make it easy for customers to shop on the go.
A good website design is crucial for any business because it can make or break your online presence. Customers should have the ability to compare products with one another and be able to decide why to buy one product instead of the other. There should be as little steps from the home page to the checkout page. Navigation menus should be helpful and easily allow customers to find their way around. Well-designed websites with user-oriented functions help customers find what they are looking for so that they end up enjoying their experience on the site.
eCommerce stores need to implement the best SEO practices since this is what will help rank your website in search results when customers search for relevant keywords on Google. The higher your ranking, the more organic traffic will be received by your ecommerce store.
Provided the budget allows, an eCommerce store should advertise on Google. Experimenting with Pay-per-click (PPC) strategy will help the brand understand if it is feasible for them to invest in paid search engine marketing. The feasibility can be checked using the data from analytics and future strategies can be planned accordingly. The aim is to get relevant traffic. It is not worth draining your scarce financial resources on ads that do not pay off.
A good eCommerce store needs to have a customer support service team in place since it will be the best way to ensure all customer queries and feedback reaches to you. An excellent customer support services will make sure they answer as many queries as possible and resolve whatever issues that arise concerning the online store's products or services.
It is important to know the average amount of time a customer spends on your website and how much they interact with your social media pages and posts. A good eCommerce store will track the user journey and use the information to come up with efficient marketing strategies that appeal to the customers.
Customers who have had a good experience with your eCommerce store will comeback and shop more often. The simple strategy for customer retention is to build customer relationships. The success of any eCommerce store is dependent on repeat purchases and not only on one-time purchases.
eCommerce stores should always try to improve the user experience on their site since it will be a way to increase customer retention rates. A customer is likely to return to the store if they are provided with excellent service and are helped at each stage of the buyer journey. You need to aim for customers that are likely to spread good word about your store. For that you need to play your part in ensuring customers receive excellent service. All of these efforts combined can result in an increase in traffic and consequently in sales.