Enhancing your ecommerce business in 2021: what marketing tools can help boost your sales?
How can eCommerce businesses get a competitive advantage and increase sales? What you sell, pricing and your customer service make a massive difference; but when it comes to getting more customers, that all boils down to your digital toolkit, marketing plan, and how you implement this.
Here is our step-by-step strategy, showing how eCommerce brands can use this powerful list of data-driven software solutions to get ahead of the competition in the eCommerce market in 2021.
7 Steps for boosting ecommerce profits
1) Research your competitors
Competitor research is the first step in creating a business growth strategy. With a clear idea of what your competitors are doing, you will be able to create more accurate, effective, and user-centric marketing campaigns across different channels.
With the help of a series of spying tools, you can gather insights into different aspects of your competitors’ strategies, and define better ways to get ahead of them.
Look into using these as part of your digital toolkit:
- Sprout Social. This is the ultimate tool for analyzing your competitors’ social media strategies. With its help, you can analyze Facebook and Instagram metrics, visualize data, and find out the opinions of your competitors’ customers. These insights will improve your own social media tactics.
- MailChart. Finding out how your competitors handle email marketing is equally useful, given the high conversion rates within email campaigns. With MailChart, you may get helpful insights into competing email campaigns, subject lines, sending frequency, and timing.
- iSpionage. This tool is great for determining the quick-win keywords that your competitors use on their website and blog. With its help, you can identify SEO and PPC targeted keywords, plus find other companies that are promoted in Google according to the specific topic. Grab all of this data to support competitor keyword buying for PPC, and using the right keywords in organic SEO campaigns.
2) Improve your website user-experience
Implementing creative and effective eCommerce marketing strategies is a key part of driving new traffic and growth; however, they are unlikely to work if your website is not ready for a boost in traffic and has a poor user experience. The next step, especially if you are putting money into advertising, is getting your website ready for more traffic and therefore potential customers.
Use these and other tools to improve your website:
- Hubspot Website Grader. This is a simple and intuitive tool that checks the main parameters of your website, such as page speed, performance, mobile friendliness, SEO, and security. Using this enables you to instantly find out what points need improvement before proceeding with your marketing strategies.
- ChatBot. The incorporation of a chatbot into an eCommerce site is a widely adopted practice. This AI-powered tool can improve your sales by 67%, and what’s more, it’s quite easy to create one for your website with ChatBot.com. Its intuitive interface based on drag-and-drop functionality allows you to develop a chatbot with no coding skills. There are also numerous ready-made options on the market, and many of them integrate with social networks, such as Facebook.
- B2Storefront. Switching to headless and API-driven eCommerce is one more way to improve the experience of your users while making your website more interactive. With the help of B2Storefront, you will be able to power your website with headless CMS. This will improve the user experience, instantly deliver marketing content across different platforms and devices, and provide a better opportunity for user experience customization.
3) Stay focused on search engine optimization (SEO)
Every successful eCommerce business requires a smart and effective SEO strategy behind it. SEO also directly interacts with PPC campaigns; therefore deploying both is the best way to generate traffic and customers. Since Google is constantly adjusting its algorithms to provide users with the most relevant and high-quality content, you have to pay attention to a wide number of SEO concerns.
Using the right keywords in your content and matching them with the user’s intent is at the core of an effective SEO strategy. Use these tools to cover your users’ search queries and answer their questions in your content.
- Ahrefs is one of the most popular tools for keyword research since its features are almost unlimited. With its help, you may research the whole keywords pool (depending on their competition level), find out specific and long-tailed keywords, analyze the keyword clustering of competitive websites, track your backlinks, visualize data, and get insightful reports.
- Answer the Public is a great tool for addressing your users’ concerns, and it may be quite helpful if your goal is to get on the first page of Google for a number of search queries. Answer the Public suggests the questions your users ask online, providing you with the opportunity to ultimately answer them, reaching Google Snippet, and bringing them to your eCommerce site.
Since half of the internet searches are searches for local businesses, empowering your SEO strategy with location-based keywords is essential. Even if you don’t have a physical presence, local search optimization is an opportunity to get noticed by users from different locations. The following tool might be what you need:
- Local SEO Checklist. While you may grab location-specific keywords with the help of Ahrefs, the Local SEO Checklist will help you streamline all the other activities related to the local promotion. For example, with its help, you will be able to optimize your meta-tags, create a schema markup, set up 301 redirects, get registered, manage your profiles in high-traffic business directories, work with customers’ testimonials, build citations, and more. With such a powerful tool, you may expect to get a great local reach.
Getting a number of high-quality do-follow backlinks coming to your site is another useful Google ranking factor. Google suggests getting backlinks organically – i.e. when someone cites your content and makes a reference to your website. This process is pretty time-consuming, but you can still simplify and boost it using special link-building tools such as:
- SEMrush Backlink Gap Tool. With the help of this internet marketing tool, you can analyze the link-building strategies of your competitors. It helps you identify the backlinks your competitors have, which means you can implement a more effective guest blog outreach approach.
- Adsy lets you automate your guest posting and link-building strategies. With its help, you can reach out to relevant blogs and websites accepting guest posts, create guest content, and get valuable backlinks, in addition to reaching potential new customers.
It’s worth mentioning that content is at the heart of any eCommerce website and marketing strategy. Thankfully there are numerous tools to make your SEO-optimized and guest content even better for search engines, to help customers find you:
- Grammarly. With the Grammarly Premium version, you can fix writing mistakes, typos, and extra spaces, plus make better word choices and follow a clearer sentence structure. Using Grammarly, you can also check your content for plagiarism.
- Hemingway app. Making blogs and articles readable, alongside copy on web pages and product pages, is important for Google, because the longer web visitors are on pages the better a website performs in rankings. Hemingway, named after the famous author, Ernst Hemingway, known for writing shorter more engaging sentences in an era when many authors still wrote in larger paragraphs, helps writers in the Internet era produce shorter more effective passages of text, for blogs, articles and on web pages.
4) Gain valuable insights into your web visitors
In this era of data-driven and personalized marketing, you need a clear idea of what web visitors are doing, why, and to gain as many insights as possible so you can tailor the experience more effectively to drive sales.
The following eCommerce analytics tools allow for gaining these insights quickly:
- Hotjar. This is a customer behavior analysis tool based on AI technology. Using it, you will be able to find out your customers’ behavior patterns, create visual heatmaps, and record website visitors’ sessions in real-time. Hotjay also lets you create user surveys and get firsthand opinions about their impressions of your business. This is one of the best solutions for obtaining real-time and real-life analytical insights, and you can use them for your eCommerce website development and user journey improvement.
- ReviewTrackers. This social listening software allows for staying updated on what your customers share about your brand online. When each new review is created and posted on Google My Business or other review platforms, you get an alert. With the help of ReviewTrackers, you will be able to carefully manage your online reputation and brand awareness, monitor existing customers’ satisfaction, and instantly respond to users’ feedback, strengthening your relationships and solving their complaints.
5) Start attracting new customers
After your website has improved conversion rates and SEO positions, and you are well-informed on your customers’ specifics, behaviors, and opinions, it’s time to attract new potential customers.
Here are a couple of actionable lead generation tactics you can implement:
Lead magnets are the most powerful tools for lead generation and capturing. They work well for pulling potential customers into your sales funnel and collecting a potential customers’ database. Lead magnets take the form of non-intrusive pop-ups offering something valuable (for example, a discount or valuable piece of content) in exchange for new users’ contact details.
Think about the offer that you will share with the help of a lead magnet. It should be attractive and valuable. For example, many eCommerce websites offer a discount for the first purchase or free shipping.
This eCommerce tool will help you create them.
- OptinMonster. With the help of OptinMonster, you may create attractive and effective lead magnets, embed them on your website, and set them up according to your users’ behavior. For example, a lead magnet may appear when the user shows the intent of leaving the website, or when dwelling on the product page for several minutes without proceeding to the checkout process.
Search engine marketing (SEM)
SEM is the winning strategy when you need to attract new shares of potential customers. Use Google marketing tools for this purpose:
- Google Ads. This is the core tool for setting up PPC or PPA advertising. With its help, you will be able to pick the target keywords that cause your ad to appear, add a headline and ad copy text, and most importantly, carefully segment your target audience according to multiple parameters such as age, location, behavior, or interests. eCommerce websites can also pay to put product listings directly in search results, so when someone searches for “blue sweater”, your product listing with an image and price shows up.
- Google Analytics. To analyze the results of your SEM campaigns, connect Google Analytics to your website. It will give you the opportunity to get custom and visualized reports, revealing the weak and strong points of your campaigns.
6) Implement email marketing
After you’ve attracted a new influx of potential customers, with the help of SEM marketing, PPC, social media, and lead magnets, you need to keep them engaged using email marketing.
We suggest using a comprehensive email marketing tool for businesses to manage, track, and analyze their campaigns from a single place:
- Active Campaign is one of the most popular email marketing solutions that is equally suitable for small businesses and eCommerce companies. With it, you can create awesome newsletter templates, setting up sending sequences, testing the users’ responses, and conducting A/B testing. It can even trigger site messages, manage live chat communication, and analyze your sales.
7) Encourage sales from those who’ve left without buying
Since the modern sales funnel is cyclical, you need to close its last stage, meaning it’s time to automatize repeat purchases. OptinMonster, which we have already used to create lead magnets, can be a good solution in this case. This software enables you to work with abandoned carts, set up retargeting campaigns, personalize content marketing, and much more.
The list of eCommerce marketing tools used to streamline your online promotion could go on and on. We provided you with an ultimate toolkit, which when used smartly may significantly improve your ROI and reduce costs.
However, managing all the processes on your own may be overwhelming, especially if you need to focus on more crucial business tasks, like building your audience’s trust or entering a new market. In this case, the wise decision can be to outsource your marketing strategy development and implementation to tech and market-savvy vendors.
Matt is Rampiq’s digital marketing manager and strategy guru. He drives clients’ projects and is engaged in internal marketing activities. Matt’s super-power is content marketing planning and execution.