5 Ways Online Retailers Are Handling Marketing All Wrong
Established e-commerce brands are the model all marketers should aspire to, hoping to achieve the booming success of the e-commerce sector, where sales as a proportion of total retail have risen by a factor of seven since 2002 and a compounded 10 percent growth rate is expected right through to 2017.
Or so you'd think.
Thing is, though, e-commerce growth is stagnating due to an ever-growing number of participants. While big players like Amazon.com and eBay have businesslike marketing that gets the job done, and smaller guys like Naked Wines or Dollar Shave Club exhibit flashes of brilliance, most online retailers aren't seeing anything like the revenue they could. Why? Their marketing just isn't good enough.
So, what are e-tailers doing wrong, and what should they be doing instead?
If you build it …
No one will know about it. The No. 1 error e-tailers commit is having a great product, a great website and no marketing. That way, you get no traffic. if you build it, tell them about it, or I don't care what Kevin Costner says, they won't come. Your first and most important step is to take your marketing seriously, regardless of how awesome your product is.
The search continues
Why is search like email? Not a joke, just an observation. Every year, people say search is dying, email is dying, search engine optimization is over, online retailers can forget all about it. Meanwhile, both channels continue to pull in traffic and drive revenue, delivering return on investment well in excess of more fashionable channels.
Search is the source of 30 percent of traffic to small and midsized e-commerce sites. That should be enough on its own to redirect e-tailers’ attention. In addition, it's also the source of most of your best customers. Customers coming to you via organic search were worth 154 percent of average CLV (customer lifetime value). Yet it gets the least love and least integration with other marketing avenues. Everything you do should be optimized for search to the extent that it doesn't interfere with the primary goal, and that goes double for your website.
Rohan Ayyar is the regional marketing manager for India at SEMrush. His blog, The Marketing Mashup, covers digital marketing from the perspective of B2B, B2C, lead generation, mobile marketing, SEO, social media, content marketing, database marketing including predictive analytics, and conversion rate optimization. In addition, he'll look at emerging marketing technology and how marketers can use it. Reach Ayyar at firstname.lastname@example.org.