Let us get real—the world of e-commerce is a dynamic and competitive realm where only savvy brands survive.
But with so many businesses competing for consumer attention, it can take time for a small business to stand out. Several aspects come into play to gain success, but a robust e-commerce marketing strategy can improve sales. This blog post outlines actionable insights on e-commerce marketing strategies brands like yourself can use to increase sales.
What is e-commerce marketing?
Before we delve into the tactics, it’s crucial to understand what e-commerce marketing is. Simply put, e-commerce marketing attracts shoppers to your online store, converts them into paying customers, and retains them post-purchase. It leverages numerous digital marketing strategies to achieve these goals.
E-commerce marketing is the backbone of all online businesses. It’s a holistic approach that encapsulates everything from SEO to email marketing, social media campaigning, and beyond. A strong e-commerce marketing strategy can help you reach your target audience, improve your online presence, and boost your bottom line like never before.
Here are the 11 e-commerce marketing strategies with examples you can use immediately. Keep reading!
1. Know your audience
Effective e-commerce marketing begins with understanding your audience. Knowing who they are, what they want, and how they interact with your brand is crucial for creating a winning marketing strategy.
When it comes to understanding your audience, you can conduct market research to gather data on the demographics, preferences, and purchasing behavior of your prospective customers before a new launch.
You can also use Google Analytics to analyze website traffic, click-through rates, and conversion rates and better understand how your audience interacts with your brand online. This data can help you identify patterns and trends, allowing you to optimize your website and marketing efforts accordingly.
Another way to know about your customers is by actively listening to your customers through surveys, reviews, and social media interactions. For example, Sugar Cosmetics, a leading e-commerce makeup brand in India, regularly uses quizzes for product recommendations and insights into customer orientation.
Sugar periodically leverages quizzes to sell its products and know its audiences.
2. Offer product recommendations
Personalized product recommendations can significantly augment your e-commerce sales. This is based on understanding the likes and dislikes of your online customers and suggesting products that might interest them. The strategy enhances the shopping experience and increases the likelihood of repeat purchases.
Imagine walking into a physical store where the staff instantly knows your preferences and recommends products that align perfectly with your taste. With personalized product recommendations, you can recreate this tailored shopping experience online.
Product recommendations can be strategically placed throughout your website, ensuring customers are exposed to relevant suggestions at various touchpoints. Whether on the homepage, product pages, or during checkout, these recommendations serve as gentle reminders of other items they might be interested in. For example, check out how Chumbak has a “you may also like section” on their product page,
For every product you select on their website, chumbak will showcase similar recommendations.
3. Optimize your website
Slow-loading websites are the bane of e-commerce success. Conduct regular website performance audits and optimize your site’s speed. Compress images, minify code, and leverage browser caching to enhance load times.
Ensure your website is fully responsive and mobile-friendly to cater to the growing number of mobile shoppers. Implement mobile-first design principles, ensuring a seamless experience on all screen sizes.
Optimize your checkout process too. A clunky and complicated checkout process can drive customers away in frustration. Streamline with a one-page design and offer multiple payment options for convenience. Implement guest checkout to eliminate unnecessary barriers while providing precise and transparent shipping and return policies to inspire confidence in the purchase.
After establishing a robust website, it is time to reach customers where they are using the one and (not) only—social media!
4. Leverage social media
Social media has become a pivotal instrument in ecommerce marketing. These platforms help brands to reach a vast audience base, showcase products, and engage with customers like never before.
Effective social media marketing involves engaging content, facilitating two-way communication, and keeping tabs on the latest trends. Consistency is key in social media, so plan your posts effectively and keep the engagement going. Also, promote your products as ads on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook. Thinking of revamping your Instagram marketing? Check out our article on how to run Instagram marketing for D2C brands.
Makeup and beauty brand Blur India utilized social media to build their market from scratch. They identified the target audience and created hyper-personalized content to make their products feel relatable and remarkable. Blur is an excellent example of understanding the power of social media for e-commerce brands.
5. Invest in SEO
You can connect with potential customers actively seeking your products or services by crafting a strategic SEO approach. It involves optimizing your website to rank higher in search engine results, thereby increasing organic traffic and potential sales.
Let us understand how to optimize various elements of your website for the best results.
- Optimize product pages with relevant and keyword-rich content that resonates with your audience. Use long-tail keywords that reflect user intent and product attributes.
- Make sure all your website pages have meta-title and meta-description defined. Use primary keywords in your meta-tags.
- Implement structured data markup to provide search engines with additional context about your products, such as ratings, prices, and availability. This will help your page appear on rich-snippet.
- Strategically link product pages to related categories or blog posts. Internal links boost your content’s discoverability and improve your website’s overall ranking.
- Optimize your website’s loading times to reduce bounce rates and improve user satisfaction.
Jhaji Store, an Indian pickle brand, accelerated its sales by ranking on the first page of Google for pickle enquiries. If any potential shopper searches for “buy online pickle”, Sweet Karam Coffee appears as an answer.
6. Use email marketing
Email campaigns enable brands to engage with potential and existing customers directly. Utilize customer data to create personalized messages that address individual needs, aspirations, and pain points.
Further, divide your email list into targeted segments, such as new customers, loyal patrons, or cart abandoners. Tailor your email campaigns to each segment, offering relevant content, promotions, and product recommendations. Segmentation empowers you to deliver the right message to the right audience at the right time.
Finally, refine your approach with A/B testing. Experiment with different subject lines, images, email content, and calls to action (CTA) to identify what resonates best with your audience.
7. Incorporate influencer marketing
Consumers are increasingly seeking authenticity and connection with brands they trust. By forging alliances with influencers who resonate with their target market, you can cultivate a loyal following for your business.
The key to a successful influencer campaign lies in selecting the right influencers. Conduct thorough research to identify influencers whose values align with your brand’s ethos. Seek those who possess a genuine interest in your products, as their authentic endorsement will carry greater weight with their followers. Collaborate with micro-influencers, as their highly engaged and niche audience can yield remarkable results.
Semi-permanent hair color brand Paradyes routinely collaborates with micro-influencers and saves time and money on building an audience. Instead, they tap into the pool of these influencers and create a network effect.
Leverage diverse content formats like videos, Instagram Stories, and blog posts to showcase your products from various angles, maximizing audience engagement.
Also, consider running influencer-exclusive offers for their audiences. Provide influencers with personalized discount codes to share with their followers, creating a sense of exclusivity and urgency. Monitor the performance of each influencer’s code to assess their impact and consider incentivizing influencers based on their conversions.
8. Run paid advertising campaigns
The cornerstone of a successful paid advertising campaign lies in crafting ad copies that captivate and convert. Highlight unique selling points and benefits, creating a sense of urgency that compels users to take immediate action. Employ attention-grabbing visuals and emotive language to leave a lasting impression on potential customers.
My Muse is an Indian sexual wellness e-commerce brand utilizing paid advertising to boost sales.
This advertisement ticks all the boxes—compelling and catchy copy that matches the vibe of their product, important information like discreet shipping, and sleek graphics to cater to their type of audience.
Paid ads can also reflect your strengths instead of just your products. Use micro-influencers or celebrities to craft ads that create a desire in shoppers to be like them. Deepika Padukone’s skincare brand does just that.
9. Utilize reviews and testimonials
Reviews and testimonials are social proof, showcasing your brand’s authenticity and credibility. But how do you get your customers to leave them?
1. Post-Purchase Email Delight: Shoot a friendly post-purchase email asking for feedback. Offer an incentive, like a discount or freebie, as a cherry on top to motivate your customers to leave a review.
2. Engaging Social Media: Be bold and ask your followers to share their experiences on social media. Host fun contests or shout-out competitions, and use the power of user-generated stories about your products.
3. In-Product Review Pop-Ups: Capitalize on those moments of euphoria when your customers unbox their goodies. Use in-product review pop-ups to capture their excitement and enthusiasm while it’s fresh!
Once you have collected the reviews, you can showcase them in many ways.
- Stellar Testimonial Page: Create a dedicated testimonial page on your website, showcasing heartfelt stories and experiences from your customers. Add visuals and video testimonials for an extra touch.
- Trusty Product Pages: Embed reviews directly on your product pages to provide real-time validation for potential buyers.
- Reviews on Home Page: Flaunt your best reviews on your home page. Showcase bright and bold stars alongside customer quotes.
Bunaai collects customer reviews and showcases them on the website, linking them to the products.
These tactics will certainly get people interested in checking out and buying your products. A significant percentage of shoppers may even add items to the cart.
10. Streamline checkout process
Picture this: A customer has browsed through your collection, added their favorite products to the cart, and is ready to complete the purchase. But wait, the checkout process resembles a game of chess, with countless steps and complexities that seem never-ending.
A streamlined checkout process ensures the customer makes a purchase after clicking the “Buy Now” button. From cart to checkout, keep it simple and clutter-free. Offer a one-page checkout design that requires only essential information, leaving no room for distraction or hesitation.
Offer shoppers multiple payment options to cater to diverse customer preferences. From credit cards to digital wallets, empower your customers with flexibility and convenience.
Flipkart has a speedy checkout process with a minimalist design. The only requirements are your mobile number, email ID, OTP, and delivery address. Flipkart offers multiple payment options, including integration with “Pay Later” apps.
Guest checkout is the secret shortcut to streamlining the checkout process. Offering a guest checkout option eliminates the need for customers to create an account, eliminating unnecessary friction that could lead to cart abandonment. While account creation may seem tempting for future engagement, prioritize immediate sales by making guest checkout the star attraction.
Use abandoned cart email to convert lost customers
Despite your best efforts, some customers may still abandon their carts. Fear not! Implement abandonment recovery tactics, such as abandoned cart emails with enticing incentives, to encourage customers to return and complete their purchases. A well-timed reminder can be the gentle nudge they need.
There are multiple approaches to craft abandoned cart emails, including those with offers and strong copy. You can explore some tried and tested email templates here and save time.
11. Offer lifestyle discounts and deals
“FOMO” marketing remains one of the best classic sales tactics in e-commerce, mainly because they always work. Lifestyle discounts can cater to various settings, such as a festival, a sustainable choice, loyalty to the brand, and so on.
Mark special occasions with thematic discounts that leave your customers feeling celebrated and appreciated. Create experience and exclusivity, whether seasonal holiday discounts or birthday surprises.
Celebrate your customers even more with membership rewards. Implement loyalty programs that offer exclusive discounts and early access to sales for members.
Bunaai—and we cite their example multiple times in this blog because they are doing it well—has cracked the code to the “Refer and Earn” scheme.
Its campaign is creative because there are rewards for buying from Bunaai as a lifestyle choice: a surprise discount every time.
Another way to get creative with lifestyle discounts is to study the pulse of your target segment. For example, if sustainable ethos is becoming the norm among your audiences, offer exclusive discounts to those who opt for eco-friendly products or contribute to recycling efforts.
Want to get even more creative with discount ideas? Use our cheatsheet to create irresistible discounts for your brand.
Now that you know these 11 proven tactics, it’s time to implement them and witness the transformation in your e-commerce sales.
Understand your audience, tailor your marketing efforts to their preferences, and always keep an eye on the market’s pulse to stay ahead of the competition. And for any funding needed to launch your e-commerce marketing strategy, we are here to help!
Velocity is India’s largest revenue-based financier. We offer growth capital of up to Rs 4 crore to D2C and e-commerce brands. Businesses with healthy revenue streams can receive instant funds and can make repayments as their revenue grows. To get instant funds for your business, you can apply here!