A ccording to research from eMarketer, e-commerce sales are expected to exceed 27 trillion dollars in 2021*. If you are an online merchant hoping to snag just a wee bit of that 27 trillion dollars, nailing your e-commerce marketing strategy needs to be job #1.

In an increasingly diverse e-commerce marketplace, failing to double-down on brand development and marketing outreach is akin to waving the white flag of surrender. Entrepreneurs who want to realise their e-commerce dreams need to develop a powerful marketing strategy and continually tweak their strategy over time. Multiple factors will influence the effectiveness of your marketing efforts, including data analysis, SEO, and competitive marketing initiatives.

To ensure your marketing plan is effective as possible, you must take a multi-pronged approach to e-commerce growth. Consider incorporating the following e-commerce marketing tips into your growth plans and you will be on the right path towards profitability.

1) Social Proof

Social Proof is a core element of successful e-commerce marketing. If your growth strategy does not include social proof components, you are doing your online business a disservice. Use tools like Google My Business (google.com/business), Trust Pilot (au.trustpilot.com), Yotpo (yotpo.com) and Reviews (Reviews.io) to ensure you are maximising the ROI of your business’s social interactions.

2) Personalise

Personalised human curation is another powerful growth tool many e-commerce vendors overlook. It is one thing to have a “recommended / similar product add-ons” widget on your website and another to create custom collections or segmenting your client base to encourage sales.

E-commerce merchants often think they don’t have time to blog or don’t know what to write about. Create collections of your products, segment your client audience, utilise copywriters, engage digital content specialists and embed your curated collection on your blog. Who knew e-commerce blogging could be so simple?!

3) Newsletters

E-commerce merchants who use the power of newsletters to grow their business have a significant advantage over their competitors. Thanks to resources like Mailchimp (mailchimp.com), Hubspot (hubspot.com) and Publicate (publicate.it), e-commerce vendors can send product and service newsletter updates to their subscribers in an instant.

Newsletters can be used to showcase your latest inventory arrivals, update subscribers on market trends, or share links to relevant information your audience will find helpful. Not only will you be sharing data your subscribers might enjoy, but you will also be re-engaging leads and supercharging your opportunities for increased sales.

4) Content Planning & Customer Outreach

Customer outreach & Content planning is a crucial factor in effective e-commerce marketing. Vendors who make the effort to define their outreach opportunities on a regular basis and develop a strategy to capitalise on those outreach targets are way ahead of other e-commerce merchants who think customers will magically discover their online store. Outreach planning should be part of your quarterly marketing strategy.

5) Mobile First

Mobile readiness is no longer optional for e-commerce merchants. If you don’t adopt a mobile-first attitude for growing your company, you will be left in the proverbial dust by savvier competitors. As a growing number of consumers become mobile-only shoppers, it is imperative your e-commerce marketing strategy be optimised for mobile devices.

Load times, data-hogging plugins, and auto-load videos are just some of the factors that can send consumers running in the opposite direction. If you don’t want shoppers hitting the back button the moment they hit your e-commerce website, you need to go all-in on mobile optimisation.

6) Be Voice Ready

Voice-enabled shopping is still in its infancy. Online merchants who understand the significant impact voice commerce is going to have on their business are poised to reap the rewards of being early adopters. When you understand how factors like Alexa-enabled shopping and Google voice search influence your sales opportunities, you can take action to ensure your marketing strategy takes voice commerce into account.

Research firm Gartner has predicted that 30% of web-browsing sessions will be screen-less, voice-assisted sessions by 2021. If you want to make sure your online business flourishes in the future, voice-enabled shopping needs to be part of your overall marketing plan.

7) Landing Pages

Landing pages are another integral part of effective e-commerce marketing. Understand the impact of design and layout on your landing page conversion rates to ensure your online business is optimised for maximum sales.

Test everything from your CTA (call to action) buttons to your fonts and copy placement. The words you use and the color of your landing pages can influence sales rates. Do not leave anything to chance by A/B testing your landing pages on an ongoing basis.

8) Mobile Payments

Incorporating mobile payments into your marketing strategy is vital if you want your business to survive and flourish. With multiple mobile payment options like Google Pay (pay.google.com) and Apple Pay (apple.com/apple-pay) at their disposal, today’s mobile-enabled consumer wants to shop and pay for their purchases with their smartphone.

Develop a strong mobile payment strategy and promote its benefits online, and you stand to overtake competitors who don’t have a mobile payment plan in place.

9) Define Your Customer Journey

Customer journey mapping is an additional essential component of a strong e-commerce marketing plan. Mapping a buyer’s journey from discovery to finalised sale lets you discover optimisation opportunities you might have overlooked.

Develop e-commerce buyer personas and understand how each potential buyer might make their way through your sales funnel.

10) Test & Know Your Customer’s Experience

Customer experience is one of the most overlooked components of effective e-commerce marketing. If your site isn’t a pleasure to navigate, all the marketing in the world won’t save your online business. Customers need to enjoy every aspect of their interaction with your e-commerce business, including your product selection and checkout procedures.

The number of global e-commerce businesses will continue to explode as more developing nations become mobile-enabled. Today’s e-commerce merchants have everything from dropshipping-as-a-service to translation-as-a-service tools at their disposal. With an ever-increasing number of resources available, launching an e-commerce business is as easy as picking a product, finding a drop-shipper, and creating a website.

If you hope to stand out in a crowded e-commerce marketplace, it is crucial your marketing strategy be optimised for success. Integrate these seven e-commerce marketing tips into your growth strategy and you just might be able to stave off the competition.

Lexlab’s Digital Transformation Packages make sure to get your business ready for growth and allow you to scale quickly.