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For online retailers looking to create greater customer loyalty and turn these customers into advocates that bring more customers, it’s important to understand online buyer behaviour. Customers now use a wider range of channels both online and offline to research purchases, request info and engage with brands.
So, it’s now more important than ever to understand how customers use devices (Smartphone, tablet and desktop) to interact with retailers and brands and what combination of channels are important to them.
Here are some online web marketing tips for retailers to implement:
Amazon.com is one of the best examples of online personalisation. Their tactics can be applied to any online retail business and the benefits include
• greater knowledge of customer needs,
• understanding customer behaviour,
• increased revenue from website sales
• and a positive image with visitors and existing customers.
Personalisation can be applied at various touchpoints including first time visit, return visit, first purchase, email signup, products viewed, time on site, pages viewed and so on. So, product pages, messages and offers can be tailored to suit your visitors’ needs and actions and this leads to greater customer satisfaction and efficiency in discovering what they need.
Target Market Analysis
It’s important that you identify the target segments that will help your business achieve its marketing objectives. For example, if you are a fashion retailer looking to reach millennials, you should identify what they respond to and what channels they use to research, purchase and also interact with brands. So, Facebook could be an important channel that they access regularly and you can use it to increase brand awareness and boost customer loyalty.
It’s important that your business is market oriented and not product oriented. Customers only care about the value that they acquire from your business and not about your products – which are only one part of the value that you provide. So every product in your range should help to position your business and increase customer retention.
There are three main product line strategies: wide product line, deep product line and a combination of the two. Tie Rack is an example of a business that follows a deep product line strategy and they have many colours and sizes of ties and other similar products. Amazon follows a wide and deep product line strategy because of their deep pockets and this helps them to be competitive and achieve high customer retention rates.
So your product strategy will depend on many factors including your target market, financial resources available, nature of products and so on.
Now that you’ve identified your target markets and what their needs are and you have a clear idea of your product strategy and how it matches with competitors, it’s time to pinpoint the online channels that will help you to launch your digital marketing strategy. For retailers, some important online channels include Search Engine Marketing, Product Listing Ads, Email Marketing, Social Media, Affiliate Marketing and others.
Your choice between these will depend on factors such as budgets, expertise, business life cycle stage, nature of products and target markets.
To launch an effective online web marketing strategy as a retailer, you need a plan that includes your objectives, target markets, competitor analysis, strategy, and budgets and you can download my free digital marketing plan template to get started.