The first three months of 2020 have seen marketers throw out their rule-books and carefully laid plans. Consumer behavior has experienced an unprecedented change when it comes to retail, pushing digital media and ecommerce to the forefront of the sector. Ecommerce is increasingly important for the FMCG category, now contributing to a record 36% of global growth driven from all regions. As brands and retailers navigate this uncertain time, Tag recommends 3 ecommerce strategies to adopt to boost online sales.
The past few months have seen people increasingly staying home, causing a sizeable shift from in-person to digital retail interactions. With increased strains on marketing teams to pivot their strategies and justify every dollar spent, coupled with consumers’ increased screen time, the role social media plays in these interactions will increase. Streamlining consumer purchase journeys has grown in importance, with a need for brands to make it as easy as possible for customers to buy, and this starts where the customer is most engaged and active – on social media.
As more and more brands make the shift to social media as a primary retail driver, the landscape will become increasingly cluttered and share of voice will be harder to come by. Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) are increasingly becoming the most popular marketing format for brands, and in a time where more businesses than ever before are trying to reach their consumers through social, KOLs will be crucial to achieving cut-through. The influence of KOLs should not be disregarded – they build a high level of trust with their audiences, so in many cases having a KOL recommend your brand or products may not only increase brand awareness but may also grow brand affinity and build purchase intent. The importance of KOLs is backed by the rise of social commerce and in-app shopping functionality that lets consumers purchase products from retailers without having to even leave their social platform of choice.
Live streaming is another social content vertical swiftly growing in popularity, especially as people are opting to minimize physical contact and interactions. Major social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook now have live-streaming functionalities for users, facilitating an authentic way for brands to engage with their customers in real-time. Live-streamed product launch events and how-to tutorials enable brands to keep up a conversation with their customers even when they are not able to do so in-store, and when done in an effective way can drive traffic to ecommerce stores and provide an immediate sales boost.
Ensuring that product detail and listing pages are effectively positioned to drive brand awareness and conversion supported by ecommerce-optimized content will be essential for supporting increasing online shopping traffic. Leveraging search and listings best practices to drive internal traffic to your product detail pages will help increase conversion opportunities. Lessons can be taken from ecommerce giants such as Lazarda and TaoBao who optimize their product listings to include creative product titles and clear and engaging product descriptions, allowing these ecommerce elements to effectively replace the interaction that consumers would have otherwise had with in-store staff in a physical retail setting. To maximize conversion, consumers should have all their questions answered on a product page, such as how the product will help them, who it is right for and how they can use it.
Social marketing and ecommerce campaign events can be used to drive targeted leads to your product detail pages. A frictionless consumer journey is key to creating a successful ecommerce strategy, and the ability to accurately connect customers with the products they need without them having to even search for it will undoubtedly increase conversion rates. Even in this direct approach, there is an opportunity for up-sell too, with Amazon’s “frequently bought with” product recommendation feature being a winning example of this. Targeted communications are pivotal to maximizing traffic and conversions, however it’s important to note that any targeting should be frequently monitored and updated to keep up with changing consumer behavior, particularly during turbulent retail periods.
Consumers expect to be given relevant offers and recommendations, with 84% of consumers surveyed by Salesforce stating that treating them like an individual is very important to winning their business. Brands have access to more consumer data than ever before, and it’s imperative that you are taking advantage of this and personalizing your communications to your customers, including relevant offers that encourage repeat purchase. In doing this, you are building loyalty with your customer, treating them like a valued and important individual in the same way that you would in-store. This will not only benefit your brand in the short term, it will also have longer-term effects when it comes to customer loyalty and how your brand is perceived in the future.
With the expected spike in ecommerce activity, data analytics and what you do with that data is vital. As more people go online, there will be more data points available to help you optimize your ecommerce conversion funnel. Understanding the consumer journey at every point in the funnel and communicating with customers in a personalized manner based on a combination of demographic attributes, past purchase history and stage in the sales journey, will be key to the ecommerce success of your business.
At Tag we create faster, simpler, cost-effective and consumer-centric marketing campaigns. With our team of digital and physical retail experts, we are uniquely positioned to help support brands in the transition from physical to digital retail strategies, providing end-to-end marketing solutions enabling brands to ensure they are well-positioned during times of change and uncertainty in the market.