If you prefer to listen to this article please click the link 5 Tips to Help you Build Your Ecommerce Brand
While there is no definitive number of e-commerce websites (or even an approximate one, for that matter), it is safe to say that we are talking about millions of stores from all over the world, all trying to find a place under the sun and attract a portion of the limited number of online shoppers.
The majority of e-commerce stores are just an attempt at a quick buck and those stores are all but doomed to fail. Still, there are plenty e-commerce business owners who know what they are doing and who understand that their e-commerce endeavor needs to be a brand.
So, how do you build an e-commerce brand? Well, here are 5 tips to help you do it the right way.
1. ADOPT A VISUAL IDENTITY
Like with any other type of branding, your e-commerce business will need to have a union visual identity that will be present every step of the way. From the home page to product pages and even the About Us page, your visitors need to understand they are visiting the same website with the same brand message.
Your e-commerce brand will need a color palette that will make sense for the type or products you are selling and you will also need a logo that will make your store stand out. This is where agencies like Fivenson Studios can help with years of experience and a team that understands the importance of visual identity.
You need to keep this identity present whatever you do besides your website. For example, your email marketing efforts need to be visibly yours and if you should venture into physical retail in any way, you have to accompany your presence with your visual identity too.
2. IDENTIFY WHAT SETS YOU APART
Depending on what it is you are selling, you will be more or less able to really identify what it is that sets your e-commerce business apart from the competition.
If you are selling your own products, this will not be a problem. Identifying your unique selling proposition will be as easy as sitting down and doing a bit of mulling over your product and the way you actually manufacture it. There will always be something that is not like what the others are doing and your brand should revolve around it.
If you are selling stuff that other manufacturers' produce, you might find it somewhat difficult to identify your USP. Still, in most cases, it can be done. For instance, you may be geared towards festival-attending crowds as a clothes seller; or you may be focusing on dads as your customer base; perhaps you are only producing 100% green and sustainable products.
Finding the thing that sets you apart and making it the cornerstone of your brand is always a good idea.
3. USE SOCIAL MEDIA
Online shoppers use social media. It is one of those internet truths that even little children are aware of. Many online shoppers will talk about their purchases and their purchasing plans on social media. They will also spend time researching online shops on social media, trying to find out more about various e-commerce brands and what they can expect from them.
This is the market that you cannot afford to lose. In other words, your e-commerce brand needs to be present on social media and it needs to be smart while doing it.
For one, you will not simply be selling on social media. In fact, you will be doing very little of direct promotion. Instead, share your content, interact with your followers and share their social media posts in case they mention you in any context.
Do a search every now and then and find out what people are looking for. If it is something you sell, approach them, but not aggressively.
Also, make sure to use images and videos. Without photos and vids, your social media branding efforts will fall on deaf ears.
4. DO SOME SEO
In a perfect world, you wouldn't have to do SEO in order to build your e-commerce brand, but since we live in an imperfect world, you will need to do some basic search engine optimization, if nothing else then because most of your competitors will be doing it.
We are not saying that you should spend thousands of dollars each month on SEO, but make sure to cover the bases. Make sure your website is up to SEO code, so to say – that you do not have duplicate pages and content, that your alt tags, title tags, and meta descriptions are taken care of and that you write your own product descriptions.
Make sure your blog is at least half-alive. Feature customer comments on your website. Build a few links every now and then. Don't make spammy links.
5. VENTURE INTO THE PHYSICAL WORLD
It may seem silly to take your e-commerce business into the physical world, but it actually makes a lot of sense. While many people are perfectly okay with shopping online, there are still many people who prefer to have a physical contact with what they are buying and what they are considering buying.
Perhaps the easiest way to attract such people and to bring your e-commerce business into the real world is to set up a pop-up store from time to time. Find a space that you can rent out for a limited time, set up everything, hire a sales team and start promoting your brand.
Once again, you will want to feature your brand's visual identity prominently in your pop-up store and you will also want to make sure everything else is synchronized across your website and your physical store. For example, Shopify recently introduced a swipe reader that eCommerce business owners can use to seamlessly sell as part of their pop-up store experience.
With a pop-up store, you might just reach customers that are traditionally uncomfortable about purchasing online.
It can be a great thing for your e-commerce brand.
James D. Burbank has been involved in the world of marketing for almost 15 years. He is currently splitting his time between Australia and Europe and working only when he has to. You can check him out on Twitter - @JBurbank2019
Fivenson Studios is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, our graphic design team specializes in logo and web page design, as well as marketing campaigns for social and print media. From flyers and brochures to targeted landing pages, we aim to bring your company into the spotlight and reach a greater range of potential customers.