11 Advanced Tips for Multi-Channel E-commerce Marketing
There’s plenty of advice about multi-channel e-commerce marketing on the web, but the majority of it is basic and, in several cases, outdated. Therefore, merchants who have gone multi-channel ask the inevitable question: What do I do to gain a competitive edge?
While you’ve done a great job at expanding the visibility of your products, you need to supercharge your multi-channel marketing strategy with some advanced measures that add value to the overall buying experience.
46% of companies deliver poor customer experiences, according to Episerver’s Multichannel Digital Marketing report, so below we’re going to share with you uncommon strategies that you can apply to your multi-channel e-commerce campaign to improve its effectiveness on all ends.
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These 11 tactics don’t cover your common e-commerce marketing advice. They’re actionable, detailed, and easily executable without hiring outside help (because we’ve also mentioned some helpful tools along the way).
1. Use Dynamic Retargeting Across Your Channels
Ecommerce retargeting is an advertising practice that enables you to display product ads to customers who have already been on your site, so it tends to bring higher conversions. By displaying banner ads to past visitors, it can bring down your cart abandonment rate.
For instance, Watchfinder – one of UK’s leading watch store, implemented retargeting across different data points. They saw a 1,300 percent ROI from retargeted campaigns, with a 34 percent reduction in cost per acquisition and 13 percent increase in average order values.
You can use retargeting on Facebook to reach a consumer who liked a product on your page. Or you can send retargeted emails to consumers to remind them of their wish list, or a special discount on a product they looked up on your site. Ideally, you’d want to set up retargeting for every channel possible.
2. Contextualize Your Marketing Message for Each Channel’s Audience
Contextualizing your marketing message is about personalizing your marketing communication across different channels. But that doesn't mean delivering the message in the exact same way on each medium.
Rather, it implies sending out marketing messages based on each consumer’s interests, browsing and buying behavior while making sure the value you offer remains consistent across channels.
For instance, Skubana offers multi-channel inventory management & ERP software to high-volume merchants. We contextualize our offers for the omni-channel marketing strategy we leverage to reach prospects.
You’ll see that we share our blog on Facebook as well as talk about companies that have featured / interviewed us.
On YouTube, we contextualize the content by delivering videos. The fact that we have our own e-commerce TV channel on YouTube gives us an extra edge.
3. Synergize Your Marketing & Sales across Channels
Your goal here is to market the same product across multiple channels, but with a twist. What you can do is direct each product’s purchase link to a different sales channel, doing what you did in the previous step (personalizing the offer).
This often works because a consumer may be motivated to buy from a particular marketing medium than from others. For instance, the wholesale video game seller, Game Quest Direct, was able to up its order volume by 20% by giving customers the option to shop from any of 15+ sales channels of their choosing.
To avoid channel fatigue and continue ongoing relationships with buyers, refresh your sales offer on a regular basis, and gear resources towards marketing to fit the customer’s expectations.
4. Integrate Facebook Rating & Reviews across Other Channels
Facebook rating and reviews are hot these days, and some people even consider them having greater weight than customer testimonials on a website. And in general, 70 percent of people consult ratings or reviews before making a final decision to buy.
What’s shocking is that most e-commerce stores who practice multi-channel marketing don’t utilize Facebook rating and reviews on other channels. So it’s an ideal opportunity for you to be one of the few to capitalize on their influence.
You can display Facebook rating and reviews on:
- On your main website.
- In your emails
- In the content you post on third-party sites
Repuso and other similar tools will make the integration easier.
While Facebook rating and reviews don’t appear in search listings, their authenticity makes them hard to neglect.
5. Market to Prospects, Not Channels
It’s all too easy getting carried away with multi-channel marketing. After all, you can promote products to people on every given channel, and this should enable you to drive new leads. However, today’s e-commerce customers are savvy, and don’t like being referred to as “another lead.”
Rather than attempting to reach people on every channel, consider reaching them as an individual you actually know. This is where you can take advantage of CRM (customer relationship management) software. CRMs create user profiles the moment a customer responds on a channel and update this profile with each interaction as shown below.
HubSpot Enterprise is one of the few options that provide CRM data to support multi-channel marketing initiatives. It can be used to understand conversion paths and provide your marketing team with a 360 view of the customer to launch targeted campaigns and ultimately increase sales.
6. Leverage User-Generated Content
The best marketing you can deliver for a multi-channel campaign is user-generated content and word-of-mouth. For instance, you can get video reviews of your products or services from clients and feature them on your main website as well as in your newsletters to deliver a strong message backed by social proof.
To collect enough user-generated content, put a creative hook to encourage people to opt-in for reviewing or saying a word about your company. For instance, you could prompt customers to share a way to creatively use your product on Instagram and include your company name in the hashtag.
The customers can then be entered in a competition for a giveaway. The winners can be featured on multiple channels in real time to generate buzz and brand awareness, on your main website for instance and later in an email marketing campaign.
7. Consider Event-Triggered Marketing
Event-triggered marketing is when the actions of people on one channel determine what kind of marketing they’ll be exposed to on another channel. For instance, when a customer abandons the shopping cart on your site, it can be a trigger for a follow-up email containing incentives to complete the purchase.
The benefit of event-triggered marketing is that once you have set it up and tested it for efficiency, it’s a cost-effective method of increasing response. The technology takes the strain as there are several triggers to manage the manual way.
If you want to go a little further with this approach, try accessing the value of the customer and then use the most appropriate event-trigger marketing medium to encourage conversion. So a loyal customer can receive a direct phone call, while those who are inquiring can be reached via Facebook or email.
8. Link Channels Together
You can market to a broader audience base when you integrate the channels you’re currently present on. Social media, for instance, allows easy sharing across different channels including Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc. Use this for your benefit by adding social media buttons across your website.
Likewise, you can integrate email with other channels. Your content management platform may have a plugin or two that to embed forms for email capture. Then there are exit-intent tools that allow you to display sign up forms with an incentive on your site when visitors are about to leave it.
Social media, too, integrates email marketing. You can include the sign-up call-to-action button in your adverts, or create a tab for the same purpose on your Facebook page. This integration gives you the opportunity to grow your email list when one of your campaigns go viral.
9. Align Email & Social Media Efforts
There are a plethora of ways to integrate these two marketing channels. For instance, you can monitor how prospects interact with your Facebook page or LinkedIn ads and then deliver customized email campaigns based on engagement levels.
If a segment of the audience doesn’t show interest, follow up with a softer campaign that educates them about your company. On the other hand, if another segment of the audience is engaging with multiple posts, you can create an email with a clear call-to-action to move them near to the conversion inside your funnel.
While you pursue this strategy, you can create segments of audiences to make it easy for yourself to know which email campaigns should be delivered to which set of the audience.
10. Bank on your Site’s Internal Search Data
A study by SLI systems found that only 4 out of 10 e-commerce professionals use their site search data for any of their marketing programs. If you haven’t started yet, hurry and get on with it as it is the one place where your website visitors tell you what they want and how they want you to communicate your offering.
From your search data, you can repurpose your marketing across channels. For instance, you find that product XYZ is the most searched product on your site yet it generates lower revenue than product ABC with fewer searches. You can then improve the marketing of XYZ to convert better.
Or you could discontinue the XYZ product entirely and ensure that your marketing on email, Facebook, native website and other channel focuses heavily on the high revenue generating item.
11. Get Specialist Influencers for Every Channel
There are YouTubers, there are Instagram bloggers, there are Snapchat experts; all of them have expertise aligned to the channel they’ve managed to create a following on. You, as an e-commerce business owner, could work with a few influencers to gain multi-channel marketing traction.
For instance, if you’re selling luxury makeup items in the market, you can collaborate with Instagram makeup artists, and bring on board individuals with knowledge about the manufacturing process when it comes to giving people the nitty gritty about production. The latter can contribute to your website’s FAQ page.
See the difference? Each channel’s influencer has something to offer in his/her own manner. Play to their strengths to see more conversions from your multi-channel marketing strategy. Also look for platform-specific programs, like Amazon's influencer program.
Streamline your multi-channel e-commerce marketing
At Skubana, we understand the challenges involved in developing a proficient multi-channel marketing strategy. Our multi-channel inventory management platform ensures that you are able to keep a check on your stock and satisfy customer demand on multiple channels. By leveraging Skubana and the inventory management tips mentioned above, you’ll benefit from multi-channel synergies that bring a significant improvement in your ROI and brand perception.
Chad Rubin is the co-founder and chief executive officer of Skubana, a multichannel e-commerce software the enables brands to unlock growth by unifying their back-office operations.