Nowadays, having great products, a quality website, active social media accounts, and dedicated employees isn’t enough to bring your business to new heights. You need a well-planned eCommerce marketing strategy to attract new customers, keep the loyal ones, and boost your sales. Unfortunately, many online businesses immediately jump into social media without much thought and preparation. For eCommerce brands, this can be especially damaging. Here are eight things eCommerce brands often do to hurt their social presence — and how you can avoid these problems.
8 Mistakes eCommerce Brands Make on Social Media
1. “Prioritizing” Every Social Media Platform
As a brand, you want to acquire as many customers and make as many sales as possible. However, this doesn’t mean that you have to be present on all social channels. On the contrary, you should focus your attention solely on the right ones for your brand and objectives.
Choose the platforms that your target audiences frequently use and that will help you achieve your business goals. These networks should be where you can compete for customers’ attention, where you see the biggest ROI, what you enjoy using, and what you can effectively manage.
For instance, while Twitter is one of the OGs of the social media world, you might not sell much product there. In that case, why invest your time, money, and resources for little to no return? All you’re doing is spreading yourself too thin. It’s okay not to be everywhere.
When you try to prioritize everything, you end up prioritizing nothing. Being on only the most important platforms for your brand will allow you to maximize your investments and engage with your community through great content.
2. Posting Only About Your Products
Customers love brands that they can relate to and establish relationships with, not those that only post to sell products all the time. That’s why it’s essential to know your audiences well, understand their interests, be part of the community, and join in on conversations. Showcase such knowledge by having the right balance in your content mix.
Vary your posts between product-centric, limited-time promos, brand story and values, social causes, inspirational, and user-generated content. Make your captions relevant to your market, so they can easily connect and engage with you. Doing this will not only attract new customers but will also help to retain the existing ones.
See how footwear brand Teva balances their content mix. In this example, they marry subtle product promotion with audience engagement by asking a question and inviting people to answer.
People love getting to talk about their thoughts, feelings, and opinions. So, you should be inviting them in to do just that. Additionally, this is an efficient way to learn more about your target audience and gain feedback and insight. Use this important information to improve your products, branding, and social media approach.
Take note: 24/7 hard-selling doesn’t work! (A little more about this in a bit.) Social networking is about just that — networking. Take the time to grow and nurture relationships with people who might care about your brand.
3. Having Poor Customer Service
Customers want to feel heard, cared for, and appreciated. And in today’s age of digital marketing and instant gratification, people want your brand’s assistance immediately, if not sooner.
As a brand, you don’t want people to take their negative sentiments to social media because you failed to listen and respond to them, and to do so fast enough. You also wouldn’t want to lose potential customers and sales because you ignored their questions. That’s why eCommerce brands must always strive to provide excellent customer service.
Here are some ways to do so:
- Respond promptly to feedback and complaints.
- Show appreciation for positive reviews, shares, and high praise.
- Use appropriate language and tone in your replies.
- Avoid impersonal and insincere-sounding canned responses.
- Address negative situations by moving the conversation in private.
We know this can feel like a lot of work. Managing comments, reviews, and private messages across multiple platforms is no easy task. We can help. eClincher can assist you in monitoring conversations, messages, comments, and mentions surrounding your brand, so you can punctually respond and engage with all your customers. It brings everything under the roof of one dashboard. Simple.
4. Not Incorporating Influencer Marketing
Many eCommerce brands miss the opportunities to expand their reach and audience base because they’re not utilizing influencers. Influencer marketing is effective in improving brand awareness and increasing consumer trust as you take advantage of their strong following.
Reach out to your intended influencers and collaborate on content that shows how they use or what they love about your products. However, remember that influencers only work with brands they trust, so first establish your credibility and reliability. As a brand, you’ll also want to work those who share the same audience and brand values and have high engagement rates.
Remember that your influencers’ pages should match the values and aesthetics of your own brand. Don’t work with someone simply because they have a huge following. This isn’t going to be enough. The relationship needs to make sense, and the influencers’ content needs to fit seamlessly into your own feed. Wayfair does this so perfectly.
Tip: eClincher can help you discover and engage with top influencers in your field.
5. Failing to Implement Email Marketing
Forgetting to follow-up and follow through with customers is a big mistake many eCommerce brands tend to make. If you’re not yet capturing email addresses and nurturing these online relationships via email automations, it’s best to start now.
Email marketing is a great way to remain in contact with your customers. Not only will this be a positive for customer service, but it’ll also help grow a loyal following. Here are just a few ways to maximize email marketing:
- Send discount codes during special occasions.
- Let them know of upcoming launches, new arrivals, and re-stocks.
- Check in on customers with abandoned carts or incomplete purchases.
- Cross-sell related products to repeat buyers.
- Ask them about their shopping experience and gently ask for online reviews.
Also, remember to do A/B testing (also known as split testing) to figure out which strategies work best for your audience. For example, you can split test your email subject lines.
If this is new to you, start small. Aim for a weekly “recap” type of email or a monthly newsletter. Build out your email campaigns from there.
Email marketing has the highest ROI of any type of marketing. If it’s not a pillar of your overall digital marketing strategy, then you’re leaving serious money on the table.
Customers become annoyed if brands sound too pushy or aggressive when promoting their products. That’s why your product descriptions should inspire people to make a purchase instead of blatantly trying to get their money.
Use words that depict what benefits and positive experiences shoppers will have when they use your products. Make sure they understand that they’re getting a great deal – talk about the items’ multiple uses while highlighting the savings they’re getting. More importantly, your descriptions should be easy to read and comprehend.
You should also take care not to only post about your products directly. For example, fitness brand The WOD Life shares inspiring and entertaining videos in between talking about their products, and their followers absolutely love them.
Keep in mind that effective product copy convinces people to make a purchase by explaining the benefits and not by hard-selling.
7. Not Maximizing Videos
We all know that video is still king; however, eCommerce brands fail to take advantage of this opportunity to create captivating, engaging, and impactful content.
Videos are a powerful way to capture people’s attention and to share inspiring background stories. They help increase sales, build brand awareness, and keep consumers up-to-date.
Short formats like Stories or Live are effective in promoting interactive engagement and showing your business’s personal side. These can also be created quickly, so they’re excellent for sharing product reviews and customer feedback. In fact, Stories and Live often perform better when they’re more organic and authentic, meaning not heavily rehearsed or edited. People will enjoy seeing the real you. It makes you more relatable.
On a similar note, don’t think that videos have to be huge productions to get positive results. Many brands rely on nothing more than a smartphone, an external mic (if that), and natural light. And that’s it! You don’t need fancy or expensive equipment to create powerful videos.
Here’s a good example. Fitness pro Katie Crewe films some of her videos in her home — with her cat! In her slippers!
8. Disregarding Metrics
Many brands assume that once their online business is up and running, the hard work is done. In contrast, it’s only getting started. You still have to make sure there’s proper monitoring of metrics.
Customer preferences, social media trends, consumer habits, and purchase journey change rapidly. Thus, you have to pay attention to the numbers to stay ahead of the game. Keeping track of results helps you find ways to generate more leads, better connect with your audience, and improve user experience.
Tracking and analyzing your insights is the only way you can truly know if what you’re doing is working. For instance, if videos are getting far more clicks than static images, that tells you to concentrate more effort on video content. If long-form, text-based posts get higher engagement than shorter posts, go with the former more often than the latter.
eClincher offers complete social analytics, tracks key metrics, and optimizes data for best results.
The Key Takeaways for eCommerce Brands Online
Having an effective eCommerce marketing strategy is challenging. But when done well and consistently, you can reap the rewards through increased reach and customer growth, better audience engagement, and higher sales and conversions.
Make sure to choose the right social media platforms that align with your business objectives. Avoid hard-selling and go for a variety of content types. Take advantage of different forms of marketing – from influencers and curated emails to video. Always provide excellent customer service to establish and maintain good relationships with your customers. Finally, use the right tools and resources that will keep track of all the important numbers.
eClincher can help you do all of these things and so much more. As a powerful tool, we’ll help you handle your social media efficiently and productively. Ready for the next step? Contact us today to start your free 14-day trial.