The past few years were riddled with metaverse news, supply chain issues, and data privacy changes. Still, retail eCommerce sales worldwide managed to rake in trillions and experts predict that it’s not going to slow down soon.
Whether you’re a newbie or a pro, these tips will help you increase your engagement, convert your traffic into sales, and grow your bottom line.
27 eCommerce Marketing Tips to Drive Sales in 2023:
- 1. Gather first-party data
- 2. Stick to SEO best practices
- 3. Sell directly to consumers
- 4. Take advantage of reviews
- 5. Manage your affiliate marketing campaigns
- 6. Develop fast and flexible shipping options
- 7. Go green with sustainability
- 8. Upcycle your products
- 9. Leverage user-generated content (UGC)
- 10. Offer voice commerce shopping
- 11. Improve your inbound marketing strategy
- 12. Set up a conversational AI
- 13. Optimize social commerce
- 14. Create an augmented reality (AR) experience
- 15. Engage audiences on various channels
- 16. List your product in marketplaces
- 17. Expand into local marketplaces
- 18. Add a personalized touch
- 19. Automate your email marketing campaigns
- 20. Interact with customers live
- 21. Offer diverse payment methods
- 22. Run on mobile
- 23. Prepare a video marketing campaign
- 24. Leverage Google Local Inventory Ads (LIA)
- 25. Segment your audience
- 26. Tap a wider audience with influencer marketing
- 27. Evaluate your sales data with A/B testing
1. Gather first-party data
Google’s move to eliminate third-party cookies from Chrome will be a huge blow to advertisers. While this development is for the protection of customer data and privacy, marketers will lose access to customer behavior data. This will make audience targeting impossible, thereby decreasing the effectiveness of ads.
If you haven’t already implemented ways to gather first-party data, this should be one of your key focus areas in 2023. To help you get started, you can, for example, leverage gated reports in exchange for users’ email addresses. Other ways include offering discounts and exclusive content and conducting surveys and quizzes.
2. Stick to SEO best practices
While Google (and co) might be making changes to privacy and data laws, one thing that remains (mostly) unchanged is SEO best practices. Sure, changes to Google’s algorithm are made from time to time, but there are a number of proven best practices that keep on delivering results. Stick to these and you’ll grab the attention of your human readers and possibly be rewarded with a higher ranking.
Here are some SEO tips to follow in 2023:
- Improve the loading speed of your web pages
- Produce useful blog posts and other educational digital assets
- Build authoritative backlinks and create internal links
- Optimize your images for search
3. Sell directly to consumers
With more consumers shopping online, D2C eCommerce sales are becoming more popular. Without third-party platforms like Amazon or eBay, D2C brands have more control over consumer engagement and can reduce costs and directly access customer data. In fact, eMarketer predicts that eCommerce sales for the D2C market will reach nearly $175 billion in 2023.
An example of a successful D2C brand is NIKE Direct. Since 2017, it has more than doubled its revenue to reach nearly $19 billion by the end of May 2022. Like Nike, you can start D2C marketing by listing your products to your own website, writing relevant and informative content, and partnering with influencers.
4. Take advantage of reviews
In 2023, actively start chasing user reviews. Social proof is invaluable, even more so to eCommerce brands. According to online data, Google remains the best website for online reviews with more than 63% of consumers indicating that they’re likely to check reviews on the search engine.
5. Manage your affiliate marketing campaigns
According to online stats about affiliate marketing, brands spend increasingly more each year on affiliate marketing and in 2022 it topped $8 billion. This trend alone is proof that it can be a very effective eCommerce marketing strategy.
If you’re yet to leverage the power of affiliate marketing or struggling to see real results, consider investing in a third-party tool. Affiliate marketing software helps maximize affiliate programs by managing, tracking, and growing campaigns. Finding the right platform depends on the needs of your brand. Some of the factors that you should consider are software interface, real-time tracking reports, SaaS integrations, and pricing.
6. Develop fast and flexible shipping options
As people get more used to buying essentials online, the demand for faster doorstep delivery is huge. Just how fast? According to a stat shared by Statista about the expected times for faster delivery of online purchases across the globe, more than 40% of shoppers revealed that they hoped to get their order within 24 hours.
Making same-day delivery your goal in 2023 is a bit unrealistic, but there are other ways that you can turn your shipping options into a marketing strategy. Start by offering free shipping or unmodified UPS rates. From there, you can take it up a notch with software-assisted delivery and super-optimized supply chains.
7. Go green with sustainability
Now more than ever, customers are conscious of their expenditure impact on the environment. In recent years, “sustainable consumerism” has become somewhat of a trend with increasingly more shoppers choosing to support brands and products that make an effort to reduce their environmental impact.
Offering sustainable shipping options, using recyclable packaging, and sending out informative e-newsletters are some ways to go green. In fact, consumers’ opinions on sustainable packaging reveal that eight out of 10 UK consumers believe that online shipments use too much packaging, while over 80% prefer eco-friendly packaging materials.
Vienna-based jewelry studio Sheyn, for example, ships its products in an eco-dispatch box of 80% recycled materials. H&M shopping bags can double as a clothes hanger, while DHL’s GoGreen initiative promotes the CO2-neutral transport of shipments.
8. Upcycle your products
With the continued focus on sustainability, selling upcycled, secondhand, or vintage items will be a profitable eCommerce trend.
Online fashion platform Zalando features secondhand items, while secondhand clothing platform Poshmark continues to see consistent engagement growth. On the other hand, Bestbuy offers refurbished deals for electronics. Capitalize on this trend by partnering with upcycled products suppliers or providing similar options.
9. Leverage user-generated content (UGC)
Physical products aren’t the only thing that online brands can reuse. There are many social media posts shared by everyday users that feature your brand which you can put to good use in your marketing campaigns. One of the main benefits of using UGC is that it can act as social proof too. So, if you’re struggling to get more online reviews, including UGC in your own campaigns can be another alternative.
10. Offer voice commerce shopping
Voice assistants increase customer engagement, ease online shopping, and gather consumer information. Forecasts show that digital voice assistants will outnumber the world’s population by 2024.
Voice commerce works well for simple goods like food and home items. For example, drivers can now use Alexa to pay for gas while driving. Some companies have replaced their web or mobile features to accommodate voice search. You can also integrate voice commerce functionality on your store through conversational commerce solutions or Amazon’s Alexa skill.
11. Improve your inbound marketing strategy
Inbound marketing essentially refers to all activities that help you attract traffic and improve your online visibility. This includes blogging, creating social media campaigns, and uploading videos. These strategies are not only 61% less expensive than outbound or traditional strategies but also deliver higher returns.
Staying updated with the latest inbound marketing campaigns gives you a competitive edge and boosts your business growth.
For 2023, the inbound marketing strategies that you need to focus on more are:
- Short-form video content
- Influencer marketing
- Chatbots and AI
- Content marketing
12. Set up a conversational AI
Chatbots are becoming more commonplace. In fact, a survey completed in 2022 among US consumers found that more than half (56%) of millennials have used chatbots to contact brands.
Chatbots can improve customer trust and loyalty, drive customer service, and reduce cart abandonment. There are plenty of chatbots for any industry. Consider setting up one for your shop using MobileMonkey, Pandorabots, or Imperson.
13. Optimize social commerce
With millions of active and engaged users, web traffic referrals, and shareable content, social sites have evolved into viable business platforms. In fact, a report from Accenture anticipates that social commerce will grow at triple the rate than traditional eCommerce. What’s more, eMarketer forecasts that social commerce sales will total over $56 billion in 2023.
In the past few years, Snapchat and Instagram have allowed influencers to create shoppable content, while TikTok has partnered with Shopify to unveil its new in-app shopping feature. To optimize social commerce, identify your brand’s strongest platforms and use native analytics to personalize your audience interactions. Partnering with an influencer would be a great start as well.
14. Create an augmented reality (AR) experience
The AR market is flourishing within the metaverse. It not only offers a unique shopping experience for consumers but also reduces the risk of misleading sales.
Many home and fashion brands have integrated AR technologies to promote their products. IKEA, for example, allows users to test its product in real-time using realistically looking and true-to-scale 3D products. AR platform Spark AR Studio can help you create a similar immersive experience in your shop without hacking a single code.
15. Engage audiences on various channels
According to eCommerce trend predictions, omnichannel will once again be one of the biggest trends in 2023. Omnichannel essentially unites all engagement efforts under one strategy to provide a seamless customer experience. So, whether it’s on social media, their website, or offline stores, marketers don’t risk alienating potential customers and losing conversions.
One brand that has mastered the omnichannel experience is Disney. It engages customers on its mobile app, website, and MagicBands so that they can conveniently book tickets and hotels without standing in a queue.
16. List your product in marketplaces
Listing your products in online marketplaces can increase your traffic and customer engagement, diversify your online channels, and boost your digital presence. Take advantage by driving visitors to your website and offering limited edition items or product promos there instead. You can even convert your website to a marketplace format or launch your own marketplace altogether, like Best Buy Canada.
17. Expand into local marketplaces
Adding to the previous strategy, think bigger by keeping it local. It’s natural to think about global marketplaces like Amazon and eBay when selling a product. But venturing into other country’s local marketplaces can expand your audience reach and stave off the competition.
18. Add a personalized touch
The eCommerce market is saturated with brands that are either new or making the online shift. This makes personalization more important than ever. Personalization increases customer loyalty and helps businesses gain valuable audience insight.
Just how important is personalization? A survey completed in 2022 among US online shoppers found that nearly 80% were more likely to continue shopping on a retailer’s website if it offered a personalized customer experience.
Segmenting your audience and knowing what they’re interested in are some ways to create a more personalized approach. An example to draw from is Netflix. The streaming service uses an algorithm that recommends products based on the user’s viewing behavior.
19. Automate your email marketing campaigns
Automating your email marketing campaign lets you automatically send an online newsletter to your subscriber using pre-formatted commands. According to a survey completed at the beginning of 2022, it’s the most often automated channel, with more than half of marketers using it.
Email marketing automation tools can help you grow your email list, track and monitor your email campaigns in real-time, and nurture your leads. Choosing the best platform for you depends on several factors, such as consumer behavior and past email campaign performances.
20. Interact with customers live
The popularity of influencer marketing has led to the livestream selling boom. While China is taking the lead, other regions across the world are also becoming increasingly more interested in livestream shopping.
Customer interaction is live selling’s biggest highlight. Additionally, it comes at little to no cost. Simply log on to a platform like Facebook, Instagram, and Amazon and select the livestream feature. Fashion retailer Nordstrom launched its livestream shopping channel to host live selling events, while skincare company Dermalogica has demonstrated their products on Facebook Live Shopping.
21. Offer diverse payment methods
Convenience is a key driver in today’s eCommerce market. Offering different ways to pay for your product creates a seamless and unforgettable customer experience. This, in turn, reduces cart abandonment and encourages consumers to buy more.
Credit and debit card payments are standard modes of payment, but shoppers are looking for more flexibility. Knowing your audience’s location and cultural shopping habits can help you narrow down other modes to include on your eCommerce platform. Furthermore, this helps eliminate channels that your customers might not trust.
Buy Now Pay Later (aka BNPL), for example, has grown more popular in recent years and there are several leading eCommerce brands that offer this payment method. For instance, Klarna, one of the leading BNPL names, are used by names like Fitbit, Ralph Lauren, and Under Armour.
22. Run on mobile
Focusing on mobile commerce this year can generate more sales and connect with customers across different channels.
In fact, Insider Intelligence predicts that in the United States alone mobile commerce will almost double its percentage of total retail sales between 2020 and 2025. To put this growth into further perspective, Shopify predicts that in two years’ time retail mobile commerce sales will add up to more than 40% of retail eCommerce sales in the United States.
Some of the mobile commerce trends to look out for in 2023 include:
- One-click ordering
- Augmented reality (AR)
- Zero-party data for personalized product recommendations
- Voice search
23. Prepare a video marketing campaign
In 2023 and the foreseeable future, video marketing will be a necessary investment. If you’re still not convinced that it’s worth the effort and money, these video marketing stats will change your mind:
- Just over 85% of businesses use video as a marketing tool and more than 90% of marketers that use video describe it as a key part of their marketing strategy.
- In 2023, US consumers will spend on average more than 2 hours and 40 minutes each day watching digital video.
- Nearly 90% of marketers claim that video has helped them to boost traffic.
- Just over 80% of marketers attribute an increase in sales directly to the use of video.
- A massive 88% of consumers say that they were convinced to buy a product after watching a video created by the brand.
Your audience’s preference should always come first when choosing a platform and format. A good rule of thumb is to always optimize your videos for search engines.
24. Leverage Google Local Inventory Ads (LIA)
These Google Shopping ads increase companies’ visibility to consumers who are ready to buy within their vicinity. Potential buyers can simply click a business’ LIA and have the option to purchase either in-store or directly on their website.
To leverage LIA, increase bids for shoppers near you. This will help you attract customers within a 25 to 35-mile radius. You can even add store pick-up options and increase bids both during and after store hours. These will be convenient options for shoppers, who can choose when they can buy your product.
25. Segment your audience
Because of Apple ID for Advertisers’ (IDFA) tracking restriction, tracking IDFA data now requires user consent. While this move yielded negative effects for marketers, companies can still reduce the consequence through user engagement and retention. A key to this is segmentation.
To create proper customer segments, use your audiences’ demographic information, lifestyle, and concerns. Each segment should have fundamental differences. Understand each category’s demands and identify your KPIs for each. The type of data you gather will be useful in user onboarding, selling, or upselling, A/B test data exportation, and targeted messaging.
26. Tap a wider audience with influencer marketing
Word-of-mouth is still one of the most effective advertising methods. The coronavirus pandemic allowed social media platforms to flourish, making influencer marketing an attractive option for brands.
One platform to tap for influencer marketing this 2023 is TikTok. According to Grin, one of the leading influencer marketing platforms, influencer marketing managers need to prioritize TikTok or risk becoming irrelevant.
27. Evaluate your sales data with A/B testing
A/B testing or split testing allows brands to compare two versions of their webpage and gauge the performance difference. This allows them to evaluate their conversion funnel. An industry that grows each year, it will likely be worth over a billion dollars by 2025.
You can use A/B testing on various parts of your website, from product descriptions to promotional content. Consider adding social proof signals, links to successful companies you’ve worked with, achievement stats, and testimonials. These will improve your trust rating among consumers, most of whom rely on social reviews.