No matter the stage of your ecommerce store, you’re always looking for better ways to drive more sales. Let me ask you – how thorough is your marketing strategy? How well-planned?
In this article, we offer you a complete overview of how to plan a marketing strategy for an online store. Plus, we talk about the different marketing activities you could have based on the focus of your strategy – more customers, better retention, exponential referrals or larger orders.
Having an eCommerce marketing strategy gives you an edge over the competitors because it focuses your efforts and gets you where you want to be with your online store.
No matter if you are launching your online store now or have been running it for some time, before crafting a new marketing strategy, take inventory of what you have now.
For more details, check our DTC brand buidling academy
Now, let’s talk about what you want to achieve – what your goals are. Because you want to change something, right, to make your business more successful with a new action plan.
And “more successful” usually means more sales. 🙂
The simple formula that shows how more sales are achieved is this one:
So you can either increase the number of customers, the money they spend or the number of orders they place to get an overall uplift in revenue. You can do all 3, of course, or – more realistically – focus on one at a time.
That’s why we classified the strategic activities into 3 groups based on their purpose.
If your goal is simply to get more people to your online store, here are a few tactics to use.
Analyze your traffic sources and keep only the top-performing ones
Find which marketing channels bring you good, converting traffic and give them more attention and a larger budget. Digging deeper, you can optimize CPC spend by doing keyword research what works best for you.
Attract people not in buying mode
Content marketing is a great to get the attention of potential buyers who are not actuively looking for your products. It is a part of any marketing strategy and pays off over time.
It’s an elegant way of getting people in on your email list, establishing trust and authority, and becoming top-of-mind.
We’ve listed a few suggestions that drive traffic to online stores.
The purpose of all such activities is to give value to potential customers without hard selling. If done right, inbound should position your brand strongly in the mind of the target group so that they turn to you for advice, help and inspiration. Your website should not be just a place for one-time purchases.
To make the most of shopping holidays is to gain as many new customers as possible. So better be very active promoting yourself.
These dates are pretty fixed so you can plan for the holiday promotions ahead of time.
Some marketing activities to start with so you’re prepared for the big sales are:
Going outside, meeting people and presenting your brand in a context different from a website is an awesome way to gain additional brand awareness and traffic.
Events that will help you get new customers:
All those should relate to the target persona’s past time activities and interests. Working with their media – magazines, blogs, online series (Youtube influencers) is also great.
Fun idea: organizing your own event is even cooler. It just has to cater to the audience’s interests without making it all about your products.
Influencers that can help
Whi are the most influential people in your niche – the ones your audience looks up to? To be able to update your marketing strategy any time, you can keep a list influencers with their contact. Also, take note of the kind of collaboration they might be open to.
Ideas for collaborations with influencers:
NEW in Metrilo: Influencer Marketing Performance reporting
The tactics below aim to engage customers, keep them thinking about your products and eventually solicit a new order.
Loyal customer specials
Exclusive promos are a good way to show appreciation of returning customers over newbies. Early-bird offers, sneak peaks into new collections, discounts on partner events are all ways to make people feel special, a part of a cool club.
Loyalty season after season
Use content to keep them hooked throughout the year with maintenance and usage tips (How to take care of sunglasses during the winter?). You can write about your supply chain and your brand values. Or introduce the makers of the product – experts, artisans, or rebels – in videos.
Related: Customer lifecycle emails
Engage in brand development
People love to share their opinion and you can expect huge engagement when you ask for new feature/ varieties ideas. This doubles as feedback and market research. It’s a cheap way to give them what they want while building excitement about the brand.
These are gaining popularity because people sometimes want to buy a newer item but still have the old one that’s working. Make it easy for your customers and –more importantly – lock their money by accepting the old items and giving a discount coupon in exchange. Works for all kinds of products – kitchenware, clothes, toys, gear, etc.
Based on their order and browsing history, you can offer them new products from a line they already bought. When following their taste and actions, your offers will be on point and as a result – much better accepted.
User-generated content and contests
You can hold a contest for customer-generated content on Facebook and Instagram. Encourage them to post pictures with your products and promote the brand to their network for likes and prizes. People love the vanity boost to be a trend-setter and you get referrals! Plus, they need to buy your newest product to enter 😉
In order to make people spend more in one sitting, you can either make them get more items or buy the more pricey ones.
Since price is linked to quality, you should boost your brand image to justify higher prices:
Or if you just want fuller baskets,
It’s all good but how do you know these are working?
Since we’re data geeks, we talk in KPIs. Implementing a structured marketing strategy should give you the following impact:
For best results and future tracking of your performance, we recommend using an eCommercerce analytics tool that shows customer behavior, trends and measures KPIs. Metrilo does all that and our eCommerce experts are ready to show you how.
To wrap up
Hope this outline of a marketing strategy helps you map out the actions you need to take to get to your goals. What we like about the planning part is that breaking down bigger goals into smaller actionable steps makes them look so much possible to achieve.
We’re excited to hear about your marketing plan! How do you do it? How specific do you get? Share your experience in the comments.
Metrilo’s mission is to help you build your ecommerce brand and win your place in the customer’s heart. We share what we learn from our daily work with product innovators and founders here. Subscribe to our weekly newsletter to get the freshest lessons and conquer your niche.