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Devising An Effective Multichannel ECommerce Strategy – Part 1

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Image source: Meon

Marketing heads in the retail and eCommerce sector have only one thing to achieve – maximum ROI from very limited resources. The Marketing leaders in the retail and eCommerce sectors are busy with campaigns, gearing up for new deals and promotions, and constantly updating the product descriptions and landing pages. To stay ahead in this war of the Internet space, every channel and every new device has to be utilized fully to reach the target audience. The problem lies in the fact that there are plenty of devices and channels which makes it difficult to reach the target audience for the Marketing leaders.

The idea behind this three part series is to dig deep into these common challenges. This will guide you on how you can utilize your current marketing activities effectively to reap the maximum benefit. You will also be able to devise a multichannel eCommerce strategy that will help in fully using the strengths of your business and match them with your consumer’s desires.  Last but not the least, you will see how you can use the power of content to connect with and convert more customers.

We know that you are losing control right now, but that’s perfectly all right.

As different channels are introduced, requests to invest in these new channels is increasing every year. The marketing budgets are getting thinner. Retailers and Marketing Leaders are screaming for attention, but they are not paying attention to providing the business value.

The actual problem is that the consumers are controlling these retailers. They have the power to decide which merchant they want to interact with and who can actually market to them.

Power possessed by the Consumers

While browsing your Facebook or Twitter News Feed,  you are sure to come across some ads of the products marketed to you. Sometimes, it feels okay with certain kind of products. On the other hand, it can  be irritating sometimes if the product marketed to you is not intended by you. In this case, you have the power to turn off the ad or you can block the ad permanently from your profile.

Same is true for mobile apps. Retail apps can be downloaded and deleted any time. It’s completely on consumer’s discretion whether to keep the app or not. This is also concluded by a recent study by Forrester Research commissioned by RetailMeNot. It says that a mere 10% of users with at least one retail mobile app use the app daily. It also states that 13% say they never use their apps at all.

As the mobile app trend is growing day by day,  the more helpful the app is, there are less chances of it getting deleted.If you are planning to invest in developing a mobile application, you must keep consumer control into account. This is because the ultimate decision of keeping the app or deleting the same lies with the consumer.

Traditional mediums of marketing are also getting out of Retailers’ control. Traditional means of effectively marketing their products like TV and Radio are up to offer programs to the consumers that are ad free. All this is for a nominal subscription fee. Pandora and Spotify not only provide any song on demand, but if you have paid a nominal fee, they are happy to turn off the irritating ads for you.

Focus is needed

Marketing leaders need to understand that the time has come to be a consumer marketer. With plethora of channels and options available nowadays, it is not surprising to think that you can’t handle everything. That’s right! If you focus on too many marketing campaigns and lose focus and direction, there is no way your marketing initiatives are going to give any value to the consumers. A proper strategy comes into play, which will help you in deciding where you should be investing your time and money.  Some of them are listed below:

1) Paid Search

This is becoming overly rife among the ecommerce companies. The problem with paid search is that ROI is balanced with lot of difficulty, so pulling out significant money from this approach is questionable.

2) Email Marketing

Email marketing is becoming significantly popular due to the advent of several marketing automation tools like Mailchimp.  You have to take care of your email subscription list and everything else will be a cakewalk. Budget remains fixed here.

3) Social Outreach

The return from the Social media is still in debates, but if utilized smartly, you can get good results out of the social efforts put in.

4) Content Strategy

Video content, blogs, unique product descriptions targeting the right keywords is what is needed to tract the customers and to get more consumers.

Deep down the line, you still are delving with the questions about the marketing initiatives and its impact overall. You might come up with questions like:

  • Are our marketing efforts working well?
  • Is our multichannel marketing strategy really working as intended?
  • If ROIs are not that impressive, why so much budget is being allocated to marketing initiatives?

You will get all the answers by devising an integrated multichannel marketing plan. So one person for SEO, one for email etc. will not work. They will work independently and nothing will be integrated.

The key is to combine all these and put all your focus on a common goal. One way to achieve this is by creating a buyer-centric multichannel marketing strategy.              

Keep your attention on Always-On Consumers

We have talked about consumer power earlier in this article. What the consumers are doing is filtering the noise to direct them to what actually interests them. This is what you need to do. Focus on what actually interests the consumer.

You can follow the approach below to organize your efforts

  • Turn to SMART goal setting i.e. Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-focused and time-bound
  • Outline your strategy to achieve your goal.
  • Set a timeline to achieve that goal and actually achieve it!

Stay connected for the part 2 coming up soon!

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Devising An Effective Multichannel ECommerce Strategy – Part 1