WHAT IS E-COMMERCE?
E-commerce (electronic commerce) is simply selling your product or service online. When e-commerce first became available, giants like Amazon and Etsy were born. Today, even the smallest businesses are expected to be available and to sell online. Whether you sell homemade gifts and hampers or just want another way of selling gift vouchers for your service business, your digital storefront is important.
If you’ve invested time and money into creating an online store, you want to make sure that you are promoting your goods the most efficient way! We’ve come up with what we think are the top ways to promote your e-commerce business.
1. MAKE SURE YOUR CUSTOMERS CAN FIND YOU
If you have an e-commerce store, then you already have a website. But can it be found by your customers? Your website must be search engine friendly, meaning that all your meta data should be filled out with the correct product descriptions and keywords.
DOES THIS SOUND LIKE GIBBERISH?
Search engine optimization is frightening for many people – here’s a quick breakdown of the most important elements:
- Meta Title: This is your page title – this is what shows to users when your page appears in search results for product pages.
- Meta Description: This is a description of your page – it should briefly describe what the page or product is about.
- Featured Image: This is the main image linked to your page – for products, this is a picture of the product.
Having all your meta data is important. It tells users what they are clicking on, and tells search engines what that page is about. For example, the above screen shot is an organic page 1 search result for ‘Digital Agency Dublin.’ Ensure each page and product on your website has all the available meta data filled out to give it the best chance of showing.
2. SPEEDY AND SECURE
Your website site speed is becoming more and more important. Not only are users less likely to stay on your website if it loads slowly, but they are also now less likely to even find it! Google now considers your website loading speed as a ranking factor – meaning faster websites have a ranking advantage over slower ones. This is all part of Google’s plan to make the internet a better place and ensure websites are friendly to the user.
There are many factors that could affect the load speed of your website, including the number of large images, your hosting environment, videos, transitions, hover effects – the list goes on. Google has a free tool that shows where your website can improve: https://pagespeed.web.dev/
A secure certificate (or SSL) on your website is essential for any website but especially any website where users are entering payment information. You can tell if your website has a secure certificate if there is an image of a lock before the URL in the search bar.
3. PAID ADVERTISING
For an e-commerce website, we would recommend paid advertising on Google and other search engines like Bing, particularly if you are selling products that are available on other websites. Google has dedicated channels for e-commerce websites, including Google Shopping:
4. GOOGLE SHOPPING ADS
Shopping campaigns are useful for both consumers and sellers! If I am looking for a black dress for an event, likely the first selection of search results will be a Google Shopping Ad. These show an image of the product and some key details like the price and where it is available.
These ads also appear on the shopping tab on Google, and in different placements on the Google search results page. Like display advertising, they can also appear on other websites.
5. DYNAMIC DISPLAY ADS
Display ads are image-based ads that allow you to display your ad on third party websites and not just on search engines. With traditional display ads, we pre-select which images show to each user that views them. These work well for brand awareness or for businesses that have a smaller selection of products or services.
Dynamic display ads, however, are perfect for e-commerce websites as they allow us to target users based on what products they were looking at. For example, if I was looking at a particular black dress on boohoo.com and then left the site, the dynamic display ads would then show me the image of the dress and link back to that exact product and anything else that I may have been browsing. These ads are completely based on my own browsing and will be different to every user.
This is an excellent way of reminding your customer to come back and makes it easier for them to find their products.
6. EMAIL MARKETING
Having an email sign up on your website is a no-brainer! Users now expect to receive discounts codes for money of their first order, free delivery, Black Friday 50% off, etc.
Encouraging email subscriptions not only offers value to your customer but gives you a way to stay in touch (with their permission, of course).
7. INFLUENCER MARKETING
Though many people shy away from influencer marketing, there is no denying it can be effective! Consider local or niche influencers that have a particular following and interest in your type of products or services. If the influencer is trusted by their audience, then a review or ‘shoutout’ from them can expose your brand to a new relevant audience.
Author Bio: Katie McGarr is one of the resident writers for SPRINT DIGITAL Agency Dublin, a firm offering an extensive range of digital marketing and website services to businesses across UK, Ireland, and Continental Europe. She enjoys sharing her insights about blogging, web design, SEO, and other forms of digital marketing.