E-Commerce Marketing

An E-commerce website is only as good as the quality of traffic that it gets. No E-Commerce website will generate sales without marketing and promotion to bring users in. You need to market and promote your site to generate traffic and ultimately sales because visibility in search engine results (such as Google and Bing) is ranked based on a series of complex factors.

In its simplest form, positions in search results are determined by the popularity of the website. As a result, simply relying on the search engines for traffic is not a way to make an E-commerce site successful, especially when popular search terms are likely to be used.

Below are a series of suggestions for how to market and promote your e-commerce website

Sell Yourself!

  • Develop a strong, memorable visual brand - try to avoid odd spellings or names that are similar to established brands
  • Sell via multiple channels (eBay, Amazon and your own website)
  • Establish a social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube (if appropriate) and advertise your brand there
  • Feature a news/blog section on your website which is updated regularly and shared to your social media accounts. Keep your customers informed!
  • Use Google Shopping Ads to advertise and promote your products
  • Build a direct marketing email list and send out regular email updates and seasonal event promotions

In Store

If you have a physical retail store then there are a number of different things that you can do.

  • Make sure your website address is clearly visible in-store
  • Include your website address on all receipts and carrier bags
  • Include handouts with details of your site with all purchases
  • Provide details of offers only available online
  • If you use Voucher Codes offer people who make purchases in-store a code to get a discount online.
  • If you have exclusive product lines online make sure these are promoted in-store

On your website

  • Make sure your prices are competitive and your products are relevant to the type of customer you want to attract
  • Try to offer FREE delivery
  • Include a page of special offers, either on their own page or throughout the site
  • Use Promo Banners and Ads to promote selected products
  • Collect email addresses to build a mailing list for email marketing
  • Offer exclusive online product lines
  • Consider weekly special offers that you can promote either online, via social media, in-store or by email
  • Create 'bundles' of products at a reduced price
  • Change featured products regularly

Offline Marketing

  • Ensure all business stationery and print advertising includes your website address and any necessary contact information
  • Consider radio advertising to promote your brand and website address
  • Include any weekly offers in any in-store (or other) advertising

Online Marketing

  • Use collected email addresses to promote exclusive product lines and offers
  • Use Google Adwords to drive quality traffic to your website
  • Use banner advertising linked to your current promotional offer
  • Use social media to promote any offers and promotions that you have running
  • List your products in shopping comparison and advertising services
  • Setup an eBay store to generate sales for your business and then include details of your website and promotional offer codes in with the order when it is shipped

What do I do now?

Create a Marketing Strategy

  1. First, create a marketing plan for the next 6 months
  2. Focus on key events occurring during that time period such as seasonal events, new product launches etc.
  3. Choose what offers you are going to promote during this period
  4. Set a weekly or monthly budget

Create a Marketing Plan

Once you have a marketing strategy, you need to develop a plan on how to promote it.

  1. Decide on how you are going to market to people. Options include:
    1. Direct Marketing (email or leaflets)
    2. Indirect marketing (such as 'Pay Per Click' ads)
    3. Social Media (Free and Paid ads)
  2. Next, choose when (during the 6 month period covered by your plan) you will be posting to each of the marketing channels
  3. Set a weekly or monthly budget for each of these channels

Over time, as the plan progresses, you should start to be able to work out which of the marketing channels works best for you.