Everyone in the E-commerce industry is talking about Video Marketing these days. Why? Because consumers love watching videos before making purchase decisions. In fact, studies say 96% of people watch videos to learn more about products. They watch product videos on YouTube, social media, product pages, and other sources. Unsurprisingly, E-commerce marketers are tapping into this trend and creating video content rampantly to attract potential customers to their websites.
Now, while oversaturation could be an obvious challenge, it isn’t unsolvable. All you need to do is raise the bar of your content quality and adopt effective strategies to make it successful. To help you succeed in this endeavor, we will share insightful tips and tactics you can use to nail your E-commerce video marketing in this blog.
Why Is Video Marketing Needed For E-commerce Brands?
Here are some key benefits of adopting Video Marketing in your E-commerce business-
Video Marketing Increases Social Shares
Videos are visually more engaging than text or static images. They can also evoke emotions more effectively than other content types. Whether it’s humor, informational, or inspirational, emotions are powerful drivers of social sharing. This means whenever people come across impactful videos, they are more likely to share them with their friends and families on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram.
“It was found that videos generate 12 times more shares than text and images combined. Each social share of a video extends your store’s reach to a new network of potential customers.”
Entices customers To Make The Purchase
Having a video on your landing page can increase your conversion rate by at least 80%. An immersive and well-made video can create a strong desire and interest in your products. It could be a video of a gadget being used or a sofa being assembled. Such videos provide a tangible view of your products as people can now visualize their use, functionality, and benefits. This makes customers more confident in their purchase decisions. Including video testimonials is another great way to create a positive impact on potential buyers. Hearing and seeing real people share their positive experiences can entice anyone to make the purchase.
Besides being highly engaging, video content can lower bounce rates. Videos capture users’ attention and encourage them to explore more. A well-placed and interesting video can improve dwell time (the amount of time visitors spend on your website). These metrics send positive signals to search engines like Google which in turn lead to improved search rankings.
“In a survey, 86% of marketers agreed that videos improved traffic to their website.”
Video content allows you to put a human face on your products and operations. When customers see real people behind a brand, it fosters a sense of connection and trust. For example, when you include a behind-the-scenes look at your warehousing operations or candid interviews with employees, you are automatically communicating sincerity and credibility.
A few other video content that you can include to build trust and “brand” include video testimonials from customers, explainer videos, and brand stories conveying your store’s journey, values, mission, etc.
“In a survey, around 84% of consumers claimed they decided to buy a product after watching a brand‘s video.”
Appeals To Mobile Users
Mobile users often consume content on the go or during short breaks. Videos are an excellent choice for this, as they are easy to consume, particularly in small, manageable bites. This also makes them a convenient choice for users with limited time, as people can quickly absorb information without the need for extended reading.
“More than 75% of global videos are consumed via mobile devices.”
Mobile users are also highly active on social media platforms, and since videos are easily shareable content, it makes them ideal for mobile users who like sharing interesting content with their networks.
Types of E-commerce Videos Brands Need (+Examples)
Best-suited for: Building trust and credibility
Video testimonials typically feature satisfied customers sharing their positive experiences with your products or brand. These videos help customers in decision-making, especially when they are seeking social proof. Testimonial videos convey authenticity and can address common objections, making them highly persuasive. Wakefit, the popular mattress brand, has incorporated video testimonials right at their homepage to build instant trust among audiences.
Product Close Up
Best-suited for: Highlighting details or specific features of your products
These videos showcase your products in a close-up view. They are particularly useful when your customers want to thoroughly examine the product before making a purchase. Close-ups leave no room for doubt, providing a comprehensive view that instills confidence in your products. Apple has smartly showcased several features of their latest iPhone 15 with the help of short close-up videos.
As the name suggests, a product overview video offers a comprehensive view of your products. It could explain its key features or benefits or how it addresses consumers’ pain points. These videos are extensively used to capture the attention of potential customers and pique their interest. Boat, the wearables brand, uses videos to give an overview of all their products. This way, it ensures that customers do not have to go through long blocks of text to understand the product better.
Product Tutorial & explainers
Best-suited for: Create awareness and educate customers
These videos guide consumers on how to use your products effectively. They are valuable in the post-purchase stage when customers are looking for assistance and want to maximize the value of their purchase. These videos usually provide step-by-step instructions and tips, enhancing the overall customer experience and reducing support inquiries. Lenovo, the laptop retailer, has included several tutorial videos on their website to help customers with many of their post-purchase requirements and queries.
Best-suited for: Storytelling
Brand videos provide an opportunity for you to convey your brand’s values, mission, and personality. These videos can be used in various stages of the customer journey, from creating awareness to strengthening customer loyalty. Brand videos aim to establish an emotional connection with your audience, making your brand more relatable and memorable. Ugaoo, the online nursery brand, has featured a brand-specific video on their homepage that talks about their vision and mission and how they are going about achieving them.
Garmin, the sports watch brand, is another excellent example. In most of their videos, they have successfully showcased how their brand and products are making a change in the lives of different sportsmen and sportswomen.
How To Include Videos In Your Marketing Strategy For Maximum Benefit?
Here are some ways to include videos in your E-commerce Marketing Strategy for maximum effectiveness:
Include Videos On Your Website
The simplest way to use videos in your E-commerce marketing strategy is by embedding them in relevant sections of your website. For example, you could include product-related videos on the product pages. You can also create different campaign landing pages and make them video-centric, where you succinctly give an overview of the promotion or offer with the help of videos.
Post Created Videos On Social Media Channels
Besides uploading the videos on your website, you can post them on different social media channels like Facebook and Instagram. By posting brand-specific videos on these platforms, you essentially maximize your reach and engagement. So, it is very important to create videos that are not only appealing but also shareable. Content that evokes emotions, educates, entertains, or solves problems tends to perform exceptionally well on social media.
Use Videos In Lead Generation And Retargeting Ads
You can also use videos strategically in your ads. This can help in driving more qualified leads and boost conversions. Include high-quality thumbnails in your ads, as it can significantly increase click-through rates. Also, make sure to include a clear and compelling call-to-action (CTA) along with the video. This will encourage viewers to take desired actions.
Utilize Videos Throughout The E-commerce Funnel
You can serve different kinds of videos at various stages of the E-commerce funnel to build stronger relationships and drive higher conversions. For instance,
At the awareness stage, you can capture the attention of potential customers with engaging videos that introduce your brand or products.
At the Interest stage, you can use entertaining or educational content to pique their interest and make them aware of your offerings.
At the desire stage, you can provide detailed product information through video demonstrations, comparisons, and customer testimonials. This is a great way to address common objections and concerns to help prospects make informed decisions.
At the decision stage, you can use videos to instill confidence in your brand by showcasing customer success stories, case studies, and product reviews.
At the re-engagement stage, you can create videos that act as user guides and tips on how to get the most out of their purchase.
As you have seen in this post, E-commerce video marketing offers an array of benefits for your online store. From building trust to improving your SERP rankings, video content has the potential to revolutionize your online presence. By keeping the comprehensive guide handy, you’ll be well-equipped to harness the full potential of video marketing in the coming days. But you need not be alone in this journey. ANS Commerce, India’s leading E-commerce service provider, can help in creating and executing the perfect video marketing strategy for your business. To know more, contact us now.
Many marketers think that Instagram Marketing is all about simply posting one beautiful photo after another. Yes, you might get a double-tap for this. But that’s not enough, and it is certainly not the reason why most businesses are spending time, resources, and money on Instagram. Their goal is to convert viewers into leads and leads into paying customers. And the best way to achieve this is by having a solid content strategy.
In this guide, we will help you formulate the perfect Instagram content strategy for your business and the ways to build your brand on this platform.
What is Instagram Marketing?
Instagram Marketing is a digital marketing strategy that involves Instagram to drive visitors to your business, bolster sales, and improve your brand visibility. Instagram Marketing predominantly involves promoting your products, brand, or content to a target audience. Also, since Instagram is a visually driven platform, you will be majorly sharing photos and videos. This makes it particularly effective for businesses looking to engage with their potential customers through visual storytelling.
Why Use Instagram For Marketing?
Here are some of the major benefits of using Instagram for marketing purposes:
Better Visibility For Your Brand
With 1.35 billion users, Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world. Having a solid presence on Instagram can help your brand increase its visibility among potential customers. And if you properly use hashtags, you can increase your posts’ discoverability and reach a larger audience interested in your industry.
Setting up an Instagram business profile is always free. Also, organic posting doesn’t cost you anything. This means you can start marketing on Instagram with zero investment. And even if you are planning to use paid Instagram ads, you can easily set specific budgets and target audiences based on demographics, interests, and behaviors. This means you always get the most out of your advertising budget, adding to the cost-effectiveness of the platform.
Instagram’s focus has always been on visuals. This means if you can generate high-quality, eye-catching content regularly, you will be able to generate more engagement than other text-based platforms. The platform also offers several features like polls and interactive stickers that make it very easy to engage with your followers.
Higher Conversion Rates
Thanks to better visibility and improved engagement, you can automatically expect to see an improvement in your conversion rates. Instagram also offers a robust advertising platform that allows you to create highly targeted ad campaigns. By reaching users who match your ideal customer profile, you can significantly increase the chances of converting them into customers.
How to Build a Seamless Instagram Content Strategy
Step 1. Do An Audit of Your Instagram Profile
The first step is understanding where you are right now with your Instagram presence. You can start by analyzing your Instagram profile and checking whether all the information is complete and appealing. For instance, is your bio capable of attracting your target audience? Does it give a reason why people should follow you?
Then, analyze your feed. Find out what kind of posts you were sharing earlier. Were you publishing informative posts offering value to followers? Or were you simply churning out promotional posts one after another? Most importantly, were the posts relevant to your target audience? Getting answers to these questions will help formulate your next steps.
Lastly, you need to chart down your goals. In other words, you need to understand why you are on Instagram and how Instagram Marketing helps in achieving your overall business goals. Your goals could be:
Increased brand awareness
Higher web traffic
After this audit, you will know what is working and what isn’t in your existing Instagram content strategy. If something is working, you need to note that down and use it in the future. For instance, if you find out that videos are getting more likes on your Instagram feed, you may want to focus on publishing video posts in the coming days.
Step 2. Build a Content Strategy For Your Instagram
Your Instagram content strategy should focus on three things: Theme, Content, and Schedule. Since Instagram is a visual platform, following a theme that reflects your brand is very important. By theme, we mean anything from colors to fonts and filters to the format of your posts. For instance, if your brand has a playful theme, your Instagram posts should reflect that tone in terms of colors, fonts, and content.
When creating content, you must focus on the pain points of your customers. Your content should be able to help address those issues and point them towards your products as potential solutions. The goal of your content should be to educate or convince customers to try your products.
Lastly, you need to carefully determine the right posting schedule for your target audience. You need to post them at times when your followers are most active online. You must also decide how frequently you are going to post. You can do competitor research to determine this. Once you have finalized the frequency and time, create a content calendar so that you do not miss publishing a post.
Step 3. Amplify Your Content To Reach A Wider Audience
Remember, there is no point in creating great content if nobody is going to see it. When you publish a post on Instagram organically, only a handful of your potential customers are going to see it. Even fewer are going to interact with your content. Now, unless people like, share, or comment on your posts, the post is not going to get featured on the Explore page of a much broader audience, hampering your post visibility. Thankfully, there are some ways to amplify the reach of these posts. The easiest way is to invest in paid Instagram ads. However, if you do not have a huge budget, you can always try other methods like –
Cross-promote your Instagram posts on other platforms. For example you can display your customer’s post on your website, like how Urban ladder has done below:
Create hashtags related to your business and encourage your followers to use them on their own posts
Run contests regularly and reward participants. This will encourage more people to follow your account.
Step 4. Analyze Your Instagram Marketing Performance
The last step is to closely monitor your Instagram Marketing performance. You need to capture key data, particularly those that tell you which posts your audience finds most engaging. This will enable you to fine-tune your Instagram content strategy as you move forward.
Some KPIs you need to measure include:
Feed post insights
10 Instagram Marketing Strategy Tips To Apply
Optimize Your Profile
Your Instagram profile is the digital storefront of your business – the first impression users will have about your brand. So, optimizing your profile is critical for making a positive impact on your audience. At a bare minimum, you need to pay attention to the following elements in your profile –
Profile picture: Choose a clear and recognizable profile picture. It could be your company or a high-resolution image of one of your products.
Bio: Craft a compelling and concise bio. Your bio is limited to 150 characters, so make every word count. Include essential information such as what your business does and your value proposition.
Website link: This is the only clickable link on your Instagram profile. Use it to direct users to your website, a specific product page, a landing page, a blog post, or a current promotion.
Juicy Chemistry, the skincare brand, has nailed their Instagram profile by including a catchy bio that has highlighted its value proposition and a link directing to their website.
Source: Juicy Chemistry
Don’t Forget Your Captions
Just because Instagram is a visual platform doesn’t mean you can neglect the captions accompanying the images and videos. In fact, captions offer you an opportunity to convey your brand’s story in a better way. Besides, an image or video might not always be able to convey the complete message.
Captions also offer context about your content and will be able to better explain the significance of the post. For instance, it can help highlight the post’s relevance to your audience or any details viewers may not immediately grasp.
Here are some tips to master your captions:
Encourage engagement by asking questions in your captions. When you pose a question, followers are more likely to leave comments with their responses.
Use Emojis wherever possible. Emojis can add personality and emotion to your captions. They can help convey excitement, humor, or sincerity.
Include a clear CTA in your captions to guide your audience toward a specific action. A well-placed CTA can drive desired user actions.
Here is an Instagram post from Myglamm that has an excellent caption accompanying their video. They have judiciously used an emoji and added a CTA at the end, which encourages engagement.
Promote User-Generated Content
Promoting user-generated content is one of the most cost-effective ways to boost your Instagram presence. It involves encouraging your customers and followers to create content featuring your products. It can include customer testimonials or reviews as well. Such user-generated content can build trust and a sense of community around your brand.
You need to offer incentives to motivate users to generate content. For instance, you can conduct giveaways or discount coupons in exchange for UGC. Once you have access to a UGC, repost it on your Instagram profile. If possible, highlight the best UGC in your Instagram Stories. Most importantly, don’t forget to give credit to the original creator by tagging them in the post.
Lastly, whenever users create UGC, engage with their posts by liking, commenting, or sharing them. This not only shows appreciation but also encourages others to participate.
Here is a UGC created by one of the users of the mattress and furniture brand Wakefit-
Stick To Brand Guidelines
While creating posts, it is very important to stick to your brand guidelines. This cohesiveness creates a strong and recognizable identity for your business. When followers consistently see the same colors, fonts, logo, and style in your Instagram content, they can quickly identify your brand amid the noise of social media. Here are some tips to achieve this-
Use your logo consistently in your posts. Ensure that it’s the official and latest version.
Define a consistent color palette and use only those colors in your posts. This will reinforce brand recognition.
Choose specific fonts and text styles that match your brand identity. Use these fonts in your captions and any text-based content.
Develop a distinct style for your videos and images. It could involve using specific filters, lighting, or composition techniques that align with your brand.
Chumbak, the home decor brand, follows cohesiveness throughout their Instagram posts. Right from the colors used to the type of posts published, everything is consistent and matches their brand guidelines.
Have a Distinctive Brand Voice
This strategy is all about having and exuding your brand’s unique personality, tone, and style of communication through your Instagram content. A distinctive voice lets your brand stand apart from competitors and makes your content instantly recognizable. When users encounter your content, they should know it’s from your brand, even without seeing your logo. That’s possible only if you have a distinctive brand voice.
A unique voice can also help create a sense of community around your brand. When users identify with your messaging and values, they are more likely to engage with your content, share it with others, and participate in regular discussions.
Lenskart, the eyewear brand, has a witty and stylish brand voice. You can see this tone in every Instagram post they create, particularly in the captions section.
Use Instagram Reels & Stories
Reels and Stories are Instagram features that allow you to connect with your audience dynamically. They help you stay relevant and at the top of users’ minds.
Reels are short video clips, typically 15 to 60 seconds long. You can use them to capture your viewers’ attention by showcasing your creativity and personality. They are the best medium to entertain, educate, and inspire your audience in an engaging way. High-quality reels can even appear on the Explore page. This exposes your content to a wider audience.
Stories are short-lived content that disappears after 24 hours. It is an excellent way to create a sense of urgency, prompting followers to regularly check your content for updates. Stories are perfect for sharing real-time updates, announcements, and promotions and for communicating time-sensitive information or limited-time offers.
Here is an engaging Story from Nykaa-
Use Hashtags Intelligently
Hashtags, when used intelligently, can considerably improve the discoverability and reach of your posts. They serve as a search function on Instagram- whenever Instagram users search for specific keywords or topics using hashtags, your posts can appear in search results.
Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags per post. However, that doesn’t mean you use 30 in every post. In fact, using too many hashtags can make your captions appear cluttered and spammy. Use them judiciously and aim for a mix of popular and niche-specific hashtags. An ideal number is anywhere between 3-5 per post.
The best thing about hashtags is that they can make it quite easy for new users to discover your content, even if they don’t follow you. This can help you reach a more targeted audience interested in your niche in a short span.
Here are some more tips for using hashtags in your posts:
Create branded hashtags that are unique to your business or specific marketing campaigns. This can help create a buzz and make your brand popular.
Monitor trending hashtags and incorporate them into your posts. Trending topics means higher engagement, and using these hashtags can, therefore, expose your content to a broader audience.
Use relevant industry-specific hashtags. It can establish your brand as an authority in your niche.
Take a look at this example, where Lenskart has used only 3 relevant hashtags for their post. They are a mix of brand-specific and campaign-specific hashtags.
Run Contests And Giveaways
Everyone loves free stuff. Running contests and giveaways might be an old strategy, but it still works! These events are inherently interactive, and they encourage active user participation. Users tag friends or share contest posts, which lets your brand reach a wider audience, much beyond your Instagram followers.
Contests can also prompt participants to create UGC related to your brand or products. It can encourage users to share their experiences, photos, and testimonials. This not only provides valuable content but also builds trust and authenticity for your brand.
The good thing is that running contests and giveaways need not be an expensive proposition. You can give away free products or partner with another business to split the cost of a large prize.
Here are some best practices while running contests and giveaways:
Select a prize that is attractive to your target audience. More importantly, it should be relevant to your brand. High-value prizes tend to generate more interest.
Familiarize yourself with Instagram’s promotional guidelines. Always ensure that your contest or giveaway complies with Instagram’s rules.
Create and publish official contest rules on the platform. Outline eligibility criteria, entry methods, entry deadlines, prize details, and winner selection processes.
Specify the start and end dates of your contest. A well-defined timeline creates a sense of urgency and prevents confusion among participants.
Here is a giveaway organized by Boat, the wearables brand-
Partner With Influencers
This strategy involves collaborating with individuals who have a substantial and engaged Instagram following in your niche. These individuals, called influencers, have successfully built a dedicated band of followers over several years. By partnering with them, you automatically gain access to their followers, which helps expand your reach to a wider audience.
When an influencer promotes your brand or products, it’s seen as a personal recommendation. This can be more persuasive and trustworthy than normal posts or ads coming directly from you.
Here are some best practices involved in Instagram Influencer Marketing:
Always partner with influencers whose content style and niche complement your products or brand.
Build genuine and long-term relationships with influencers. Engage with their content, comment on their posts, and reach out with personalized messages.
Before partnering with an influencer, clearly outline expectations, deliverables, and compensation.
Here is the furniture brand Pepperfry collaborating with a popular influencer in the home decor industry-
Experiment And Measure ROI
Our last strategy is to constantly experiment. Do not blindly follow a strategy because someone says so. It would have worked for them, but it might not for you. This is primarily because every audience is different. For instance, if a store owner says she has found success by posting content on weekday afternoons, maybe her audience comprises housewives who would have typically finished their household chores by then. But if your target audience is predominantly office-goers, this strategy might backfire.
Also, measure the ROI of your effort. This is the only way to know whether your strategy needs fine-tuning or you need to double down on your efforts.
The above strategies are not only mantras to grow your followers on Instagram but also foster meaningful connections with them. Having said that, you must understand that Instagram is a dynamic and ever-evolving platform. So, it’s essential to keep track of and embrace new trends and features as they emerge. Now, you need not be alone on this journey. We, ANS Commerce, can help build and execute your Instagram content strategy and help improve your presence on this platform. We are India’s leading E-commerce enabler who can handle the entire lifecycle of your online store, right from handling logistics to creating marketing strategies. To know more about us and how we can help, contact us now.
Making a purchase is not straight forward, every customer goes through multiple stages before they complete a purchase. They first check out your website, go through your product listing, shortlist a few products, read reviews, visit your competitors’ websites, and eventually come back to you to place an order. Without you having realized it, your customers have traversed through an E-commerce funnel.
Every stage in this funnel has an important role to play and influence the chances of conversion. In this guide, we will take you through all the stages of an E-commerce sales funnel, along with some handy tactics you can employ for optimization.
What is An E-commerce Sales Funnel?
An E-commerce sales funnel is a conceptual framework used to describe the different stages that a potential customer goes through when making a purchase online. As you would have rightly guessed, the funnel is a representation of the customer journey and not a specific path or a predefined process. It is simply a way to categorize all the potential customers of your online business into different buckets based on how close they are to being converted into customers.
Benefits of creating an E-commerce Sales Funnel
Here are some advantages of implementing an E-commerce sales funnel for your brand:
1. Optimize Customers’ Journey
By creating an E-commerce sales funnel, you know everything about the customer’s journey, right from when they landed on your website to when they completed a purchase. This means you have better visibility over various drop-off points in the customer journey, and you can try eliminating those bottlenecks.
2. Improve Customer Experience
An E-commerce funnel is designed to enhance the overall customer experience by minimizing friction and confusion. It ensures that customers find what they need quickly, reducing the chances of frustration and cart abandonment. You, as a business owner, can play your part by using a sales funnel to provide right information at the right time to your customers. Ultimately, improving experience and conversion rates.
3. Stay Ahead of Competition
An E-commerce funnel helps in fine-tuning your marketing efforts by providing key data related to customer interactions. You will know what works and what doesn’t in your business and industry as a whole. Data-driven approach in marketing will help you stay ahead of your competition.
4. Reduce Cart Abandonment
An E-commerce funnel allows you to build retargeting strategies to remind and persuade customers who have abandoned their carts. It can also help make necessary changes to your website to reduce cart abandonment. For instance, if most of your customers are leaving at the checkout stage of the funnel, you can minimize distractions and barriers, thereby reducing cart abandonment rates.
Stages Of E-commerce Conversion Funnel
Here are the 5 different stages of a typical E-commerce conversion funnel –
1) Awareness Stage
The awareness stage in an E-commerce sales funnel is the phase where your potential customers become aware of your brand and products. This is the broadest part of the funnel, where you cast a wide net to attract a large audience, also known as top of the funnel. During this stage, your target audience might not have a purchase intent. In fact, many of them might be discovering your brand for the first time.
What should you do?
This is one of the most important stages of the E-commerce funnel because you can attract many users to your online store. Based on the information you provide, these users might become your customers. Hence, your goal here should be increasing brand awareness and top of the funnel recall. Here are some key steps you can take:
Optimize your website for search engines to increase your visibility
Establish a strong presence on social media platforms by sharing relevant content.
Constantly engage with your social media followers and run targeted ad campaigns to increase brand awareness.
Use pay-per-click (PPC) advertising on platforms like Google Ads and Meta to reach a wider audience.
Collaborate with influencers who can promote your products to their followers.
Farida Gupta, the popular clothing brand, has mastered the art of the awareness stage. They post regular brand-specific content on platforms like Instagram and Facebook to improve brand visibility and attract more visitors to their website.
Source: Farida Gupta
2) Interest Stage
In this stage, your potential customers have demonstrated interest in your product but have not yet committed to making a purchase. They may have engaged with your website by browsing products or adding items to their cart. Your primary goal during the interest stage must be to further engage and nurture these potential customers and move them closer to making a buying decision.
What should you do?
This is the stage when customers start to compare different options, including yours. So you must help them by showing why your products are better than others. The best way to do this is by educating them about your product and its benefits. Here are a few things you could do:
Get them to sign up for newsletters. This way, you can share important information about your brand and products with them on a regular basis.
Simplify the site navigation by including a user-friendly faceted search. The objective is to take them quickly from browsing the website to the state of contemplating whether to add the product to the cart.
Have an exit strategy. Most visitors will exit your website after going through the details. You could entice them to stay by having a pop-up with discount codes.
Hamleys, the renowned toy brand, lets customers subscribe to their newsletter on their website. Once subscribed, customers are regularly sent updates about new primary arrivals. The primary goal of this activity is to pique the visitors’ interests and get them to place their first order.
3) Desire Stage
This is the middle of the funnel stage where your potential customers are convinced about the potential of your product but might have some reservations. It could be the pricing or benefits they are getting. Your goal at this stage must be to eliminate all the skepticism and doubts they have in their mind about your products. All they need is a little push from the brand to make the purchase.
What should you do?
In this stage, you must go beyond product features and talk about the actual benefits the customers will get by purchasing from you. Formulating your statement in the form of benefits, not features, will convince your customers to go ahead with the purchase. Here are some strategies you could adopt:
Include high-quality pictures and videos of your products that highlight the benefits offered.
Provide incentives like free shipping or discount coupons to convince the customer to complete the checkout.
Include social proof and reviews on the product page to reinforce the quality of your products.
Here is Pepperfy, the furniture retailer, offering and highlighting time-sensitive discount coupons on every product detail page. Such incentives will convince most customers to add the product to their cart and proceed to checkout.
4) Action Stage
This is the stage where your leads are going to turn into customers. They are completely convinced about purchasing from you and are on the verge of placing an order on your website. Even though it may seem like you are going to gain a new customer, you must be careful. The action stage (also known as bottom of the funnel) is where maximum cart abandonment occurs. If your checkout process is not seamless, people will abandon their carts.
What should you do?
You must make the buying process as seamless and user-friendly as possible. Successfully guiding customers through the action stage results in completed purchases and, ideally, satisfied customers who may become advocates for the brand. Here are some ideas you can adopt:
Auto-populate most of the checkout fields
Offer multiple payment options to customers
Ensure that the checkout process is mobile-friendly
Create a secure environment for completing payments
Myntra, the fashion brand, has created a seamless checkout experience for its customers. Besides auto-populating most of the checkout fields, it offers a variety of payment options so that the customers always go ahead with the purchase.
5) Re-engage Stage
Your relationship with customers doesn’t end with them making the purchase. You need to retain and convert them into repeat customers. The goal of this stage is to reignite the interest among your existing customers and remind them of the value the brand offers. This stage not only helps rekindle relationships with existing customers but also leverages the data and insights gathered from their previous interactions to create tailored and effective marketing campaigns.
What should you do?
This stage of the E-commerce funnel requires strategic and targeted approaches to reconnect with past customers and revive their interest. Here are various strategies you can adopt:
Encourage your buyers to share feedback on their shopping experience.
Send personalized email campaigns and recommend products based on their past purchases or browsing history. Also, offer exclusive discounts or promotions.
Implement loyalty programs that reward repeat customers with points, discounts, or exclusive access to new products.
Craft special offers tailored to the individual customer, such as birthday discounts or anniversary rewards. Personal touches can rekindle their connection with your brand.
FabIndia has an excellent loyalty program to re-engage its existing customers. Once you enroll in this program, you need to shop across their stores to earn coins, which you can later spend on shopping with them or their rewards partners. This is a great way to make customers continue to shop with them and increase their customer lifetime value.
Steps To Create E-commerce Funnel
A well-structured E-commerce funnel can become your pathway to nurture and convert visitors into loyal customers. Here are the steps to create an effective E-commerce funnel –
1. Define Your Conversion Event
The first step in building an effective E-commerce funnel is to define your conversion event. This is nothing but the specific action you want your users to take on your website to get them closer to becoming valued customers. A typical conversion event could be:
Adding an item to the cart
Adding a product to the wish list
Subscribing to your newsletter
Joining the loyalty program
Defining your conversion event in the early stages offers clarity on your primary objectives and enables you to create a seamless user journey that will help your business achieve those objectives.
2. Establish Your Buyer Persona And Identify The Customer Journey
In order to create a funnel that resonates with your audience, you need to thoroughly understand your target audience. And the best to do this is via detailed buyer personas. To the unversed, a buyer persona is a fictional representation of an ideal customer. It will typically have details such as demographics, interests, pain points, and preferences.
Once you have created the buyer persona, map out the customer journey. You need to identify specific touchpoints where these potential customers interact with your brand. This, in turn, will help you align your funnel stages with the buyer’s path. But how to do this? Let us find out in the next step.
3. Map Funnel Stages With Triggers To Move People Through The Funnel
To map out the different stages of your E-commerce funnel and align them with where your potential customers are in their buying journey, you need to first consider the different triggers that will push them down from one stage of the funnel to another. For instance, if a visitor sees one of your product listing pages, you need to find out what could be their subsequent actions. Will they explore further about the product? Will they directly add the product to the cart? Will they close the website?
By understanding different scenarios, you can strategically implement triggers that guide visitors through each stage — from awareness to becoming loyal customers. For instance, if you’re a clothing brand and you think maximum customers have questions about sizes and fitment, you can include a size chart on the product page and(or) add true-to-size tags to eliminate any doubts in the minds of customers. This will eliminate the friction that was present between the two stages of the funnel so that the potential customer can easily pass through.
4. Optimize Website Landing Pages For Conversion
Your landing pages are one of the most critical elements of your E-commerce funnel. It is the first touchpoint between your brand and a potential customer. It sets the tone for the entire customer journey, right from the awareness stage to the action stage. If your landing pages are poorly optimized, you risk losing valuable prospects in between the funnel stages.
So, you need to ensure that they are designed with conversion optimization in mind. They should be able to clearly direct the visitor to perform a specific action. It could be clicking on the add to cart button or signing up for newsletters. Ensure that every page has the following:
Clear value propositions
Prominent call-to-action (CTA) button
Social proofs like testimonials and reviews
5. Use Other Channels To Drive Your Website Traffic
The E-commerce funnel is all about getting continuous traffic flowing to your website. So, it is important to diversify your traffic sources by leveraging other channels as well. It could include social media, PPC ads, email marketing, affiliate marketing, etc. By diversifying your traffic sources, you not only increase your website traffic but also tap into different audiences, demographics, and behaviors. This helps in creating a more comprehensive and resilient E-commerce funnel that will drive more visitors to your website.
Each channel should be strategically used to attract potential customers to your website. For instance, if you own an E-commerce store selling jewelry, you can use social media platforms like Instagram and Pinterest to showcase visually appealing images of your jewelry pieces. This will enable you to engage with a highly visual audience. Similarly, you can use paid advertising on Google to target users in a particular city. Meanwhile, for email marketing, you can segment your subscribers based on their past interactions with your brand and send personalized product recommendations or exclusive discounts.
6. Retarget Casual Shoppers Who Abandoned Their Shopping Cart
Retargeting is the process of re-engaging potential customers who have progressed through the initial stages, such as the Awareness and Interest stages, but abandoned their shopping carts as they moved down the funnel. Retargeting is nothing but a strategic effort to recapture these valuable leads, guiding them back into the funnel and encouraging them to complete the purchase.
Here are some effective retargeting strategies you can adopt –
Use tracking technologies like Pixel to monitor user behavior, such as cart abandonment, and then display tailored ads to those users on different platforms.
Create email marketing campaigns to target cart abandoners. Craft persuasive and personalized emails that highlight abandoned products, offer incentives like discounts, and provide a clear call to action to encourage a return to your website.
Send SMS or WhatsApp messages to cart abandoners with a personalized message and a link back to their abandoned cart.
Create a sense of urgency by including time-sensitive offers in your retargeting ads. Let customers know that their abandoned cart items are available at a discounted price, but only for a limited time.
7. Measure The Success Of Your E-commerce Funnel
The last step is to measure the success of your E-commerce funnel. Without measuring, you will be unsure of where improvements are needed and where successes can be amplified. You will also gain valuable insights into your customers’ behavior, pinpoint bottlenecks in the funnel, and assess the overall effectiveness of your funnel strategies. Remember – measuring the success of your E-commerce funnel is not just about tracking numbers; it’s about ensuring the long-term viability and growth of your online business.
Some of the tools that can help in this step are:
Google Analytics: It can help in tracking website traffic, user behavior, and conversion rates.
Heat Maps: Tools like Hotjar indicate how users interact with your website, helping you identify pain points and areas for improvement.
E-commerce Platforms: Platforms like Kartify come with built-in analytics and reporting tools. They offer insights into sales, product performance, and customer behavior within your online store.
Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO): Tools like Optimizely allow you to run A/B tests and multivariate tests on your website to optimize conversion rates at various stages of the funnel.
E-commerce Conversion Funnel Metrics & KPIs You Should Track
Tracking and analyzing key metrics and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) at various stages of the conversion funnel is essential for optimizing your online sales strategy. Let’s break down these metrics into three critical stages:
1. Top Of The Conversion Funnel Metrics
These metrics measure the effectiveness of your funnel strategies in attracting visitors to your website. In other words, they provide crucial insights into the effectiveness of your top-of-the-funnel marketing efforts. Understanding and optimizing these metrics is vital for creating a strong foundation for your E-commerce journey, as they determine the quantity and quality of prospects entering your funnel. Here are some Top-of-the-Funnel metrics you need to measure:
Average order value per visitor (AOV)
Revenue per visitor (RPV)
Number of visitors to your site
Average time spent on page
2. Middle Of The Conversion Funnel Metrics
Middle-of-the-funnel metrics are important for evaluating the effectiveness of your efforts during the interest and desire stage. These stages are all about building relationships, gaining trust, and moving visitors closer to becoming paying customers. So, you need to measure the success of your lead generation and engagement strategies. This will help you identify opportunities for improving the conversion rate from casual interest to deeper involvement. Here are some Middle-of-the-Funnel metrics you need to measure:
Number of free trial signups
Conversions from a free trial
Number of paid accounts created using a free trial
The average revenue per customer (ARPC)
The number of leads from organic search
Number of leads from paid ads
Number of leads from social media
Quality of leads
3. Bottom Of The Conversion Funnel Metrics
These metrics are the ultimate indicators of your E-commerce success. They reveal the direct impact of your marketing efforts on revenue generation and customer loyalty. They provide insights into how effectively you are converting leads into paying customers and maximizing the value of each transaction. Here are some of the bottom-of-funnel metrics to track:
Customer Retention Rate (CRR
Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)
Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)
Net Promoter Score (NPS)
Hopefully, by now, you can design your own E-commerce funnel and optimize it using the different strategies highlighted in this post. The more you invest in fine-tuning your funnel and these strategies, the better will be your conversion rates.
If you don’t know where to start, ANS Commerce can help. We are India’s leading E-commerce expert, helping businesses navigate the competitive landscape of online selling. We can help you build and strategize the perfect E-commerce sales funnel for your business so that you can reap the benefits without investing too much time. To know more about ANS Commerce, contact us now.
Picture this: you’re pouring over your E-commerce stats, and the numbers aren’t playing nice. Despite all your hard work, sales haven’t soared as you envisioned.
Pressure’s building, right? You’re hungry for faster growth, but quality can’t slip. What’s the move?
Maybe your own efforts are not enough in a world flooded with content. What if we tell you that you can borrow the audience power and reach of other people and grow handsomely? In this blog, we are sharing ten foolproof Affiliate Marketing tips to crank up your online store’s sales.
What Is Affiliate Marketing And How does it work?
Affiliate Marketing is a performance-based strategy where businesses collaborate with affiliates to promote their products or services. Affiliates earn a commission for every sale, click, lead, or view generated through their marketing efforts. This symbiotic relationship leverages the reach and influence of affiliates to expand a brand’s customer base. And no, collaborating with what may seem like ‘random’ people is not unsafe.
Is Affiliate Marketing Safe And Legit For E-commerce Brands?
Absolutely. Affiliate Marketing is a legitimate and safe approach embraced by top E-commerce brands. It fosters a win-win situation: brands gain exposure, while affiliates earn commissions. It’s a mutually beneficial ecosystem built on trust and partnership. As long as you follow ethical practices and choose reputable affiliates, you can expect substantial returns on your investment.
Affiliate Marketing can take many forms, giving you the flexibility to choose the best model for your business’s marketing needs.
Types of Affiliate Marketing
Based on Relationship
Affiliate Marketing comes in two relationship styles:
Unattached Affiliates: These affiliates promote your products without being directly associated with your brand. This approach can bring in diverse audiences and unbiased reviews. For example, you can rope in influencers not endorsing your brand but using your product to get video reviews. You can then use these video clips to run Facebook ads.
Related or Involved Affiliates: These affiliates are either industry influencers or individuals who genuinely use and believe in your products. Related affiliates add personal experience to their promotions, while involved affiliates go the extra mile by actively using and endorsing the products they promote. Their endorsement adds authenticity and credibility to your brand.
For example, if you sell a cosmetic product, associating with makeup influencers who post makeup products on a regular basis will count under related/involved affiliates.
Based on Payment
Affiliate Marketing can also be based on money. Typically, they take the following forms:
Pay per Sale: Affiliates earn a commission for every sale they drive. This model aligns interests—when affiliates succeed, so do you.
Pay per Click: This approach pays affiliates for every click their promotional material generates, regardless of whether a sale occurs. It’s an effective strategy when exposure to the brand matters most.
Pay per Lead: Affiliates earn a fee for each lead they send your way. If the focus of your Affiliate Marketing campaign is to generate leads and sign-ups, this model could be your game-changer.
Pay per View: More relevant for video content, this model compensates affiliates based on the views their shared content receives. It’s ideal for campaigns centered around video assets.
Now that you have a broad overview of the basics of Affiliate Marketing and its mechanisms, let’s explore the tactics you can use to benefit and grow your E-commerce brand.
10 Affiliate Marketing Tips That Will Earn You More Sales
1. Select The Right Affiliates
Choose affiliates whose audience aligns with your target market. Quality trumps quantity; focus on partners who have a strong and engaged following. Remember that in today’s age, one can easily buy followers and subscribers. The key is to thoroughly evaluate the engagement of the affiliate by reviewing their unique views and consistency.
Indian hair color brand Paradyes owes its success to a carefully crafted affiliate strategy. Their colors are aimed at making a bold statement; they chose affiliates who are as bold and unabashed as their colors.
Source: Paradyes Instagram Page
Paradyes also has dedicated video calls and guides to help the affiliate understand their mission and products better.
2. Make Sure Affiliates Have A Deep Understanding Of Products
Educate your affiliates about your products. When they have a deep understanding, their promotions come across as authentic and persuasive. Consider the example of a clean beauty brand ensuring its affiliates comprehend the ingredients and benefits of its products.
You can ensure to educate affiliates about the following:
Brand Mission: Your brand’s core purpose and values.
Preferred Tone and Voice: The style and manner in which your brand communicates.
Branding: The visual and conceptual identity of your brand.
Top-Selling Products: Your best-performing and most popular items.
Marketing Ideas: Creative strategies and concepts for promoting your brand.
You can make it even easier by providing all these elements in the form of a script or storyboard. Which brings us to our next point.
3. Pre-prepare Promotion Scripts For Your Affiliates
Empower your affiliates with pre-prepared promotion scripts, creative assets, and guidelines. This ensures consistent messaging and branding across various platforms. If you’re a fitness brand launching a new line of supplements, equipping affiliates with accurate health benefits and usage information can make a significant impact.
While scripts are valuable guides, encourage affiliates to infuse their unique personality and style into the content. After all, their authenticity is what draws their audience. Affiliates should feel empowered to modify the scripts to match their voice, ensuring that the final content feels genuine and resonates with their followers.
Apart from carefully crafting scripts, choosing products strategically to match the affiliate’s voice and personality can go a long way.
To make it easier for you to understand, here is a sample script an e-commerce shoe brand can provide to its affiliate for videos.
Hey everyone, Akanksha here! I’m so excited to share with you all the new line of running shoes from [Brand Name]. As an avid runner and fitness enthusiast, I’ve been testing out their shoes for the past few weeks and I have to say – I’m incredibly impressed.
These shoes are designed specifically for runners, with features like a breathable mesh upper, ample cushioning, and top-of-the-line shock absorption. They’re so comfortable and lightweight, I barely even feel them on my feet when I’m pounding the pavement for miles. The traction is amazing too – I never slip or slide, even when running on wet or uneven surfaces.
My favorite part is the custom arch support. ShoeBrand really nailed it by providing the right amount of stability and alignment for my feet. I used to get sore feet and knees after long runs, but with these shoes, I have no pain at all!
I love the sleek, modern styling in so many fun, vibrant color options. They easily transition from running errands to hitting the gym or trails.
[Brand Name] really cares about quality and innovation. Their shoes are thoughtfully designed and tested by real athletes. I truly feel they’ve created the ultimate running shoe.
Head over to [Brand Name Website] and use my code AKKI15 to get 15% off your order. I highly recommend giving their shoes a try – your feet will thank you!
Apart from script, make sure you are providing caption text, and links that your influencers can use while posting.
4. Carefully Choose The Product You Want To Promote
Every product you choose to promote through affiliates should have a specific role in a customer’s emotional journey.
For example, if you choose to present a vegan beauty influencer with products that involve animal cruelty, that will certainly not gel well. Moreover, if your product does not have the power of connection, Affiliate Marketing will probably not serve it.
Each product has a story waiting to be told. Whether it’s the innovation behind its creation, the problem it solves, or the experience it offers, weave these narratives into your selection process. Affiliates can then carry these stories forward to captivate their audience.
To choose the right product to be marketed through your chosen affiliate, start by delving into the psyche of their audiences. What are their needs, desires, pain points, and aspirations? Your products should directly address these elements. For instance, if the affiliate is in the health and wellness niche, choosing products that align with specific health goals your audience has will create an instant connection.
SoulSpice used their story as an idea to promote their spice products. They specifically partnered with sustainable and ethical food bloggers to match their brand’s rhythm and developed stories.
If you are in the athleisure or comfort wear sector, you can curate a selection of travel-friendly, quick-dry and trendy clothes and promote them through travel bloggers and affiliates.
Testing these approaches will help you be more innovative in the process and hit the nail on what works. Let’s understand how.
5. A/B Test Your Affiliate Links and Banners
Regularly A/B test different affiliate links, banners, and promotion strategies. This iterative approach helps identify what resonates best with your audience for improved conversion rates.
While we have a full-fledged guide on A/B testing, there is one crucial tip: to isolate the impact of each change, focus on testing one element per experiment. This clarity enables you to attribute any improvement or decline directly to the tested element.
Here’s a further breakdown of A/B testing on various elements of Affiliate Marketing:
Affiliate Links: Experiment with variations in the wording of your affiliate links. Test different anchor text or phrases to discover which ones prompt the most clicks and conversions.
Banners: A/B test banner design elements such as color schemes, images, and placement. Determine whether a vibrant or subtle color palette resonates better, or if placing the banner at the top or bottom of the page leads to more clicks.
Promotion Strategies: Explore different angles for promoting your affiliate products. Test whether emphasizing product benefits or offering a time-limited discount yields a stronger response from your audience.
6. Be Transparent With Your Affiliate Efforts
When you open the curtains and reveal the inner workings of your affiliate program, you’re demonstrating a willingness to engage in authentic interactions.
One of the most effective ways to communicate your transparent approach is by dedicating an affiliate landing page on your website. This digital space serves as a comprehensive guide, not only for potential affiliates but also for your existing partners. Here’s how to structure this landing page for maximum transparency:
Introduction to Your Program: Begin with a warm introduction that outlines the key benefits of your affiliate program. Address what sets your program apart and why affiliates should consider joining forces with your brand.
Clear Commission Structure: Lay out the commission rates and payment schedules in a straightforward manner. Transparency about earnings is fundamental to building trust.
Affiliate Requirements: Clearly outline the criteria affiliates must meet to join your program. Whether it’s a minimum follower count or specific engagement metrics, this transparency ensures alignment between your brand and potential affiliates.
Promotion Guidelines: Communicate the dos and don’ts of promoting your products. Detail any restrictions or specific brand guidelines that affiliates should adhere to when creating content.
Communication Channels: Provide multiple avenues for affiliates to reach out for support or inquiries. This availability communicates your commitment to a collaborative and open partnership.
Reporting and Analytics: Share how affiliates can track their performance and earnings. This fosters a sense of empowerment and engagement as affiliates can see their impact firsthand.
Juicy Chemistry has a transparent page for affiliates with all the information they need to partner.
Source: Juicy Chemistry
Let’s see how these guidelines translate into an affiliate-optimized landing page:
Affiliate Landing Page Sample for a Beauty Brand
Welcome to Our Affiliate Family!
At [Beauty Brand], we’re thrilled to introduce you to our transparent and rewarding affiliate program. We believe in fostering genuine connections and empowering our partners to grow alongside us.
Earning Potential Made Clear:
Discover the exciting earning potential of our affiliate program. You’ll earn a competitive commission of 15% for every sale generated through your unique affiliate link.
Guidelines for Authentic Promotion:
Our brand thrives on authenticity, and we encourage our affiliates to be true to themselves while promoting our products. However, we kindly ask that you avoid misrepresenting our brand or making false claims.
Stay Informed and Empowered:
Gain insights into your performance through our user-friendly affiliate dashboard. Monitor clicks, and conversions, and track your earnings in real-time.
Your Success is Our Success:
We’re committed to your success. Whether you’re an experienced affiliate marketer or just starting, our dedicated support team is here to assist you on your journey.
Join Us in Spreading Beauty:
Ready to embark on this exciting journey with us? Join our affiliate program today and let’s embark on a transparent and prosperous partnership together.
7. Don’t Stick To Few, Diversify Your Portfolio Of Affiliates
The temptation to stick to a select group of affiliates might seem enticing, but growth for your business will only come by expanding use cases. Think of a pair of leggings that can use affiliates from multiple niches, like travel, wellness, sports and fashion.
However, expanding on use cases is only one part of the benefits. Different affiliates bring different content styles—blog posts, videos, social media updates, and more. This variety keeps your message fresh and engaging across diverse platforms.
Diversifying also mitigates the risk of platform dependence and ensures that changes in algorithms or affiliate performance don’t have a disproportionate impact.
Source: Juicy Chemistry
Juicy chemistry uses affiliate marketing across various verticals, including social media and blog posts.
8. Run Ads On Affiliate Marketers’ Content
Boosting ads on your affiliates’ content can amplify their reach, driving more traffic to their platforms. This not only benefits affiliates but also increases the likelihood of conversions for your brand.
Offduty India, an E-commerce clothing brand regularly runs promotions on affiliate content and expands the return on investment due to the relatability of the content. Even though it is promoted, it hardly feels like an ad.
Source: Off Duty Instagram
Once the ad gets shoppers into your world, it is time to make sure their welcoming journey is easy and convenient.
9. Optimize Your Website For Conversions
Imagine a potential customer clicks on an affiliate link, eager to explore the enticing product. However, upon reaching your website, they’re greeted by a cluttered layout, slow load times, and a convoluted checkout process. The result? Frustration and missed opportunities.
Your website’s user experience is pivotal. Ensure it’s mobile-responsive, user-friendly, and optimized for conversions. A seamless purchasing process increases the chances of turning leads into satisfied customers. Consider the example of an online bookstore streamlining its checkout process for smooth transactions.
Now, let’s connect the dots between website conversion optimization and your affiliate initiatives:
Affiliate Landing Pages: Tailor landing pages for specific affiliate campaigns. If an affiliate is promoting a new tech gadget, create a dedicated landing page that highlights the gadget’s features and benefits, and showcases it through high-quality images or videos.
Affiliates’ content’s alignment with your brand: Ensure that your website accurately reflects the content your affiliates are producing. If an affiliate is creating in-depth reviews, they should be linkable to relevant product pages on your website, creating a seamless transition for their audiences.
Affiliate Promo Codes: If your affiliates offer promo codes, ensure these are easily accessible during the checkout process. A well-placed promo code input field encourages customers to complete their purchases.
And finally, once you have your processes in place, it is time to see who and what is working.
10. Track Your Affiliate Marketing Success
Tracking your Affiliate Marketing efforts offers insights, illuminates trends, and empowers you to make informed decisions that steer your ship toward profitable destinations.
Many businesses shy away from robustly tracking success metrics because it sounds too technical. But really, it all boils down to understanding. And we are here to break it down for you! Let’s dive in.
Where do you start? Firstly, define what success means to you in your affiliate initiatives. Is it a certain number of clicks, conversions, or revenue? Having clear goals helps you set a course for tracking that aligns with your aspirations.
Then, provide your affiliates with unique tracking links. These links enable you to identify which affiliate’s efforts led to each click and conversion. This covers the first part of link-clicking metrics.
The second part is understanding attribution models. Decide whether to credit the last click, first click, or assign a specific percentage of credit to each touchpoint in the customer journey. This insight helps you understand which affiliates contribute at different stages.
Now, let’s connect the dots between tracking and your affiliate initiatives:
Identify High Performers: Tracking helps you identify which affiliates are driving the most clicks and conversions. This insight enables you to allocate resources and incentives more effectively.
Content Analysis: Through tracking, you can pinpoint which types of content resonate best with your audience. This knowledge not only guides your affiliate partnerships but also informs your overall content strategy.
Optimize Landing Pages: By analyzing data from tracking, you can identify where drop-offs occur. This insight informs you about areas of improvement in your landing pages, ensuring a seamless journey for potential customers.
Imagine you’re an E-commerce brand specializing in fitness equipment, and you’ve launched an affiliate program. By tracking, you discover that an affiliate who focuses on in-depth video reviews generates significantly more conversions than others. With this insight, you can collaborate more closely with this affiliate, providing them with exclusive content and resources to continue driving results.
With this guide to industry-vetted Affiliate Marketing tips for E-commerce brands, we are sure that you can embark on a successful Affiliate Marketing journey and see positive results for your brand.
However, remember, making waves doesn’t mean you need to navigate uncharted waters alone. At ANS Commerce – A Flipkart Group Company, we pride ourselves on being not just an E-commerce platform, but your growth partner. From top-tier marketplace management to performance marketing, we’ve got your back. And here’s the bonus catch, we provide dedicated Affiliate Marketing services as well.
Starting an online business in India? You are at the right place and at the right time! India is currently a hotbed for starting an E-commerce business. According to IBEF, India’s E-commerce market is expected to hit US$350 billion by 2030, propelled by rising smartphone penetration and increasing consumer wealth.
At the same time, starting an E-commerce business is quite exhausting – You need to source inventory, build a brand, and, most importantly, create your E-commerce website.
Luckily, building a website is no longer the back-breaking exercise it used to be a few years ago, thanks to modern E-commerce platforms. That’s one thing off your plate.
But with so many E-commerce platforms available, what should you pick? In this post, we’ll compare the top 10 E-commerce platforms in India and understand their key features, pros, and cons to help you make an informed decision.
Understanding E-commerce And Its Types
E-commerce or Electronic Commerce is the process of selling goods and services through the internet. Some businesses sell products only online, while others use E-commerce as an additional channel along with physical stores to sell their products. Either way, E-commerce enables brands to scale their business and reach customers from any part of the world.
There are 4 basic types of E-commerce –
B2B (Business to Business): In this type, one business sells products to another business. It could be a wholesaler using an E-commerce website to sell to different retailers, a manufacturer selling online to different wholesalers and distributors, or even a retailer selling online to different corporate buyers. B2B E-commerce typically involves larger purchase sizes or quantities. Udaan is a classic example of a B2B E-commerce website.
B2C (Business to Consumer): This type of E-commerce involves a business selling products to consumers. Here, the purchases are typically made for individuals or households, with quantities being typically smaller. Flipkart, the online marketplace, is a great example of a B2C E-commerce website.
C2B (Consumer to Business): In this type, a consumer sells products to a business through the Internet. They typically list a range of products online and set their own prices for the business to buy. Shutterstock is an example of a C2B E-commerce where photographers sell their photos to Shutterstock for a fee.
C2C (Consumer to Consumer): In this type, a consumer sells products to another consumer. The E-commerce business acts as an intermediary, facilitating the purchasing process. Olx is the best example of a C2C E-commerce website in India.
What Is An E-commerce Platform?
An E-commerce platform is a software application that helps in creating and managing an E-commerce website.
Benefits Of Using E-commerce Platform
Running an E-commerce store is not easy. A typical online store involves multiple processes, such as designing a website, accepting payments, managing stocks, fulfilling orders, etc. Managing each of these aspects individually is often overwhelming and exhausting for business owners. An E-commerce platform allows you to manage all these activities from a single platform, with the possibility of automation in many of these processes.
Here are some benefits of using an E-commerce platform –
The time and effort to design an E-commerce website are considerably reduced when you use an E-commerce platform. This is because most E-commerce platforms come with built-in templates. All you need to do is enter content and the necessary media.
You can track everything from inventory to sales within the same platform. Your E-commerce platform becomes the single source of truth for everything related to your business. This eliminates errors and miscommunication.
Many E-commerce platforms are already integrated with marketing tools. This enables you to market your brand without the help of experts. Many of these platforms also come with SEO widgets and tools to get your website to rank higher on search engines.
What Are The Different Types Of E-commerce Platforms
There are two different types of E-commerce platforms-
A hosted E-commerce platform works in Software as a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) delivery model. You do not have to set up your own server or database to store and manage information. The hosted E-commerce platform takes care of everything from setting up your store, hosting it on the internet, and even offering technical support. You will be able to add products and customize most aspects of the store, but everything else is handled by the hosted platform.
A hosted platform usually charges a fixed monthly or annual fee based on the size of your business or the features you require. Some platforms even take a small percentage of the revenue generated every month.
Kartify by ANS Commerce is a great example of a hosted E-commerce platform.
In a self-hosted E-commerce platform, you handle everything, right from hosting to designing of websites. The entire ecosystem of your E-commerce website is built from scratch by you. A self-hosted E-commerce platform is more difficult to use, especially if you are not sure of what you are doing. You need developers and other experts who can use the platform to build a full-fledged E-commerce website.
On the upside, you have complete control over your online store. For instance, if you need additional features, you can either find plugins or extensions in the platform marketplace or even ask your tech team to create one.
Examples of self-hosted E-commerce platforms are WooCommerce and Magento.
Best E-Commerce Platform In India For Store Creation
Let us now look at the 10 best E-commerce platforms in India
The first on our list is Kartify, which is the best E-commerce platform in India. This robust solution from ANS Commerce, a Flipkart group company, can take care of all your needs while setting up and managing your online store. Be it website building, or payment processing, or even returns management, you do not have to look beyond Kartify.
Besides the capability to handle the entire lifecycle of your store operations, Kartify is also extremely scalable, as it has been tested to handle over 1 million concurrent users at any time. Kartify is the perfect solution for E-commerce businesses. This means Kartify is a great choice whether you are a growing business or want to handle sale events without any performance issues.
Key Features Of Kartify
Platform Level Native Integrations: Kartify can seamlessly integrate with 100+ relevant tools and platforms. Some of the popular Payment Gateways, Marketing Automation Platforms, SMS and Email Providers, and Order Management Systems (OMS) feature in this long list.
Built-in Performance Marketing: Kartify comes loaded with performance marketing tools and automation features. The platform also offers a comprehensive view of all your sales, marketing, and traffic data so that you can make accurate data-driven decisions every time.
Easy-to-Use Website Builder: Build a responsive E-commerce website quickly with Kartify Lite, which offers a variety of customizable templates suitable for every industry, including cosmetics, apparel, personal care, accessories, electronics, and more. With Kartify Lite, you can effortlessly tailor these templates to align with your brand guidelines and personalize every aspect, from layout to navigation.
Promotions Manager: Effortlessly manage your discount promotions, and offers, and sale event strategies within Kartify. It takes just a few simple steps to set up offers like Buy One Get One (B1G1) deals, category discounts, and volume-based discounts, etc.
Hassle-free Returns: No need to find another solution to handle your returns and refunds as Kartify offers built-in returns workflows and an approval management system. Easily manage pickup updates and refunds through integrations with other platforms.
With Kartify you can conveniently manage your promotions, offers, and discount strategies within the platform. Instantly create multiple offers such as B1G1 offers, category discounts, and order discounts and share them with customers
Kartify protects all your valuable information thanks to advanced security measures such as VA/PT, RBAC, SSL certifications, etc. It also conducts regular security audits and practices customer data masking.
Kartify is tailor-made for the Indian market. It offers various functionalities loved by the Indian audience, such as OTP-based login, automatic conversion of pin codes into city and state information, GST invoicing, etc.
Customization is achievable directly from the platform. This means you can create brand-specific workflows, get access to brand-specific features, and create brand-specific design guidelines. Every pixel on the front end can be tailored according to your brand’s requirements.
WooCommerce is an open-source E-commerce platform that lets you add various E-commerce capabilities to your WordPress website. This cloud-based platform leverages the content management and website-building capabilities of WordPress to ensure that your website is a complete package for those looking to sell online without compromising on the quality of content.
Collections: These are additional plugins that can be installed to extend the functionalities offered by the basic WooCommerce platform.
WooCommerce Shipping: Besides letting you ship products to any destination in the world, the platform also lets you print shipping labels directly from your dashboard. This feature is free to use and saves a lot of cost for your business.
Multi-channel Support: Lets you sell across multiple channels, such as Amazon, Google, and TikTok, over and above your E-commerce website.
Pros & Cons
A highly interactive community ready to answer any of your questions
Specific only to WordPress
Limitless possibilities for customizations.
Lack of sufficient documentation makes it difficult to set up on your own
You need to install plugins for everything from reporting to multi-currency support.
WooCommerce is free to use. However, you need to pay for plugins if they have been created by third parties.
BigCommerce is a SaaS-based E-commerce platform that gives you enterprise-level features and integrations required to run multiple storefronts. They have two solutions: Enterprise catering to large businesses and Essentials catering to SMBs and startups. The platform has several built-in wholesale functionalities, making it suitable for the B2B ecosystem.
Payment Solutions: You can choose from over 65 pre-integrated online payment solutions and 140 currencies for your online store.
API Calls: You Use APIs to automatically synchronize data between BigCommerce and third-party systems like ERP.
Price Lists: You can give custom pricing to different customer groups at the SKU level. This is ideal for B2B storefronts.
Custom Product Filtering: You can set any field of your products as filters in a faceted search.
Abandoned Cart Savers: It is an in-built conversion tool that sends a series of emails to convince them to complete the purchase.
Pros & Cons
No transaction fee
Complicated product imports/exports
Supports both B2B and B2C storefronts
There are three main pricing plans in BigCommerce. The Standard Plan, which costs $29 per month, lets you build 3 storefronts and manage 4 inventory locations. This is suitable for small brands.
The Plus Plan is priced at $79 per month and is suitable for medium enterprises. It lets you build 5 storefronts and manage 5 inventory locations.
The Pro plan, costing $299 per month, is suitable only for multinational businesses as this plan lets you manage 8 storefronts and 8 inventory locations.
Shopify is a complete E-commerce solution that lets you create a website in minutes and start selling from multiple channels with minimal effort. This subscription-based platform offers services like inventory management, payment processing, logistics, supply chain, and shipping, all of which are essential ingredients to run a successful E-commerce business.
Shopify POS: This feature lets you take the omnichannel route for selling. This point-of-sale app lets you sell your products in person, anywhere. All the payments are linked to your Shopify inventory, which also maintains track of every sales transaction.
Shopify Markets: You can scale your business and sell internationally using this feature. With the help of a centralized dashboard, you can manage different components of international sales, such as shipping, duties, and compliance.
Social Media Integrations: You can sync your Shopify products to social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. This means you can easily create ads and shoppable posts without having to copy-paste content or upload media separately.
Pros & Cons
Offers multi-language support.
No free plans. Even the free trial lasts only for 3 days.
Unlimited contacts can be added to your Shopify accounts
There is a transaction fee if you use a 3rd party payment provider
You get free SSL certificates so that all your content is encrypted.
Difficult to exit Shopify and migrate to another platform
There are three plans in Shopify.
Basic plan is priced at ₹1994 per month when billed annually. It is suitable for individuals and startups who are just looking for basic functionalities like shipping and processing payments.
Shopify plan is ideal for small businesses that are more established and looking for professional capabilities like analytics and reporting. It costs ₹7447 per month.
Advanced plan is priced at ₹30,164 and is suitable for medium and large businesses. Besides everything in the Shopify plan, you get features like Custom Report Builder and low transaction fees.
Dukaan is an Indian E-commerce solution that helps small businesses and solopreneurs create and manage digital storefronts. You can list your products, manage orders, and process payments within the platform.
Key Features Of Mydukaan
Dukaan Plugins: With their in-built plugins, you can connect your online store with other tools in a single click. Popular plugins include Mailchimp, Google Analytics, Shippo, Intercom, etc.
Dukaan Delivery: This is the shipping service offered by Dukaan. Based on shipping cost, current turn-around time, and RTO rates, Dukaan’s advanced algorithm selects the most efficient courier partner for your order.
Pros & Cons
Designed For the Indian ecosystem
Does not provide multi-currency support
Affordable plans suited for all budgets
Offers multi-warehouse support
Lacks integrated marketing tool
Dukaan offers three pricing plans:
Silver: Costing ₹500 per month, this plan is recommended for new businesses and influencers. This plan offers basic features like Discount Coupons and Dukaan Credits. It has a high transaction fee and might not be suitable if you expect too many transactions in a day.
Gold: Costing ₹834 per month, this plan is suitable for agencies, D2C brands, and growing businesses. This plan has a lower transaction fee than Silver and offers a host of other features like Store Analytics, Custom Domain, and Web Partner App.
Platinum: Costing ₹2500 per month, this plan is suitable for medium and large businesses. It has the lowest transaction fee among all the plans and supports 10 warehouses. The rest of the features are the same as the Gold plan.
Instamojo is a home-grown D2C E-commerce platform that offers capabilities like landing page builder and payment management. Instamojo primarily focuses on SME brands looking to set up and run an E-commerce business successfully.
Mobile App: Get a dedicated mobile dashboard where you can manage orders, maintain customers, and handle marketing campaigns on the go.
Advanced Analytics: Get access to E-commerce metrics like sales/orders over time, number of visitors, customer lifecycle, etc., to make data-driven decisions.
Smart Links: Customize your payment links to suit your brand colors and messaging. Add logos and preferred images to the links to improve the conversion rate.
Pros & Cons
Forever-free plan with all the basic features
Limited feature set
Possibility to buy a domain directly
High transaction fees.
There are three pricing plans viz. Lite, which is free forever, Starter, which costs ₹3999 per year, and Growth, which costs ₹9999 per year. While the free plan offers basic features like an Online Shopping Cart, Cash on Delivery, Shipping Integrations, and Order Management, it has Instamojo branding.
The Starter plan does not have Instamojo branding on the website and provides access to 19+ Premium themes. The Growth plan offers a lot more features like SEO, Advanced Analytics, and WhatsApp Integration, to name a few.
Wix is a cloud-based website-building platform with a focus on E-commerce. Both individuals and businesses can easily create and manage E-commerce websites in Wix, thanks to a wide range of templates and features. You do not require any kind of technical skills to manage an E-commerce store on Wix.
Templates: There is a huge collection of design templates catering to almost every known E-commerce sector and vertical. These templates can be customized completely to suit your brand needs.
WYSIWYG Editor: It stands for “What You See Is What You Get”. Such types of editors ensure that you see the changes you make on the website in real time.
Mobile Optimization: Every website you create on Wix is automatically optimized for mobiles and tablets. You do not have to build or optimize your website for all the devices separately.
Pros & Cons
Intuitive drag-and-drop user interface
All the free plans have Wix branding.
Analytics is not as exhaustive as other tools
Comes with built-in SEO capabilities
It is not possible to change templates once the site is live
Under the E-commerce category, there are three plans. The most basic E-commerce plan, called Business Basic, is priced at ₹225 per month when billed annually. There are also Business Unlimited and Business VIP plans costing ₹300 and ₹500 per month.
The main differences between these plans are the storage space you get, video hours, the number of reviews you can manage, and the number of products you can dropship.
Squarespace is a simplistic and robust website builder with a great focus on aesthetics. It is a popular choice among bloggers, photographers, and small businesses selling products that require creativity. However, in recent times, owing to the vast number of E-commerce features offered by this platform, it has become a preferred choice among businesses in other domains as well.
Email Marketing: Get access to hundreds of responsive email marketing templates that you can customize in minutes. You can also measure and analyze various metrics related to your email marketing campaign within Squarespace.
Analytics: Learn everything about your store, right from who’s visiting to how they are interacting, with the help of in-depth analytics and reporting features.
SEO: Every website you create is automatically optimized for search engines. For example, elements like sitemaps, automatic markup, SSL security, and clean URLs are all taken care of automatically.
Pros & Cons
Has plenty of aesthetically pleasing templates for all kinds of businesses
No free plans.
It lets you manage everything from website hosting to design and development to online selling.
You can create only flat websites with a maximum of 2 navigations.
Access to every image of Unsplash, out-of-the-box
Doesn’t automatically keep a history of changes to your website.
The most basic plan of Squarespace is called Personal, and it is priced at $16 per month when billed annually. This plan offers only templates and a free domain.
However, if you would like to have a fully integrated E-commerce store, you need to pick one among Business ($23 per month), Commerce Basic ($27 per month), and Commerce Advanced ($49 per month). Each plan offers a unique set of features over and above the previous one.
9. Adobe Commerce
Adobe Commerce is a full-fledged E-commerce platform offering you all the tools required to run a successful online store. It was previously known as Magento Commerce before the tech powerhouse Adobe acquired the platform. It is one of the few E-commerce platforms that lets you create both B2B and B2C storefronts with relative ease.
Live Search: It is an AI-powered search feature that offers more relevant search results at lightning-fast speeds. The AI and ML engine of Adobe Commerce can offer personalized results on every shopper query.
Integrated B2B Functionality: Get access to a wide range of B2B functionalities, such as customized catalogs and pricing. You can even get self-service customer portals so that you can easily manage accounts and order books in Adobe Commerce.
Pros & Cons
High levels of customization are possible
Being a self-hosted solution, you need to take care of everything, from hosting to development.
Comes with advanced catalog management features.
Steep learning curve if you are new to website development
Has a huge community to provide technical support
Lack of transparency in pricing. There is no free plan.
Ecwid is an E-commerce plugin from Lightspeed. In a few clicks, you can add various E-commerce functionalities to your existing website using this tool. The goal of Ecwid is to eliminate the process of building a new website from scratch and to extend your existing website to start selling.
Lightspeed Payments: You get a fully integrated payment solution that not only accepts cards but also payment methods like Google Pay and Apple Pay. You can manage all your payments right within your control panel.
ShopApp: You can easily turn your online store into a downloadable mobile app with the help of this feature. The products and content in ShopApp and your Ecwid store are always in sync, ensuring no miscommunication.
Automated Tax: Ecwid automatically calculates tax rates at the checkout. This way, you can minimize the chances of tax calculation errors as you no longer have to manage and update individual tax rates.
Pros & Cons
Comes with a forever-free plan
The built-in website builder feels somewhat simplistic and lacks advanced customization capabilities unless you know how to code.
You can create multilingual stores with easy translation of storefronts
The tool cannot be used to create a standalone E-commerce website.
Possibility to create a custom iOS or Android app
The free plan is extremely underwhelming, with very basic functionalities
There is a forever-free plan with basic features. The most basic plan, called Venture, is priced at ₹889 per month when billed annually. In this plan, you can set up a store with only 100 products.
There is also a Business plan, costing ₹1649 per month, which lets you manage a store of 2500 products. In the Unlimited plan, costing ₹4990 per month, you can create a catalog of unlimited products.
How To Choose The Best E-commerce Platform?
Here are the different factors you must consider while picking an E-commerce platform –
This is a key factor wherein you focus on different technical aspects of the E-commerce platform, such as the type of platform (self-hosted or hosted), security, website performance, etc. For instance, in the security category, you should prioritize a platform that supports SSL certificates and provides frequent security updates.
Kartify is a hosted platform that offers security features like VA/PT, Role Based Access Control System, SSL Certificate, encryptions, and customer data masking.
You must always remember that your E-commerce store is not going to remain the same as days pass by. The number of products will increase, and the number of users will multiply. The platform you choose must be able to handle any number of customers without putting too much financial pressure on you. The platform should also be able to handle traffic spikes during sales events without slowing down or crashing.
Kartify is built to scale and is ideal for growing businesses. It has been tested to handle over 1 million concurrent users at any time.
The idea is simple – the platform you choose must be aligned with your budget and offer you the returns within a few months. You must particularly focus on hidden costs like transaction fees and setup fees while picking a platform, as they can create a dent in your expenditure. Also, try to understand the maintenance costs involved in using the platform.
Kartify is one of the most affordable E-commerce platforms in India and has a tailored pricing plan for every business.
It is important to pick a platform that lets you tailor your online store to suit your brand and customer needs. For instance, the platform you pick must offer a wide variety of customizable themes or templates. Also, it will be great if you get access to the source code of the website so that you can make any changes that are not possible in a visual editor.
Kartify lets you customize every aspect of your store, right from navigation components to checkout steps. You can build a fully personalized store that adheres to your brand guidelines.
You need to pick a platform that offers integrations with other tools and platforms to streamline your E-commerce operations. For example, the E-commerce platform you select must be integrable with your preferred payment gateways or inventory management system. The ease of integrating with other essential solutions can considerably impact your efficiency.
Kartify offers integrations with 80+ Integrations, such as payment gateway solutions, loyalty program platforms, marketing tools, email and SMS Gateways, etc.
Lastly, the E-commerce platform you choose must have strong analytics and reporting capabilities. It should either have built-in analytics tools or support third-party analytics solutions. You must also be able to create custom reports that display all the key metrics for better decision-making.
Kartify comes with a dedicated analytics dashboard that gives you access to key insights about your sales, traffic, and products.
Set Up Your Store On Kartify And Start Selling Online
As you can see, Kartify is the only solution that satisfies all the above criteria. It is scalable, affordable, and highly customizable, making it the best choice for all those entrepreneurs looking to set up an E-commerce store today. If you need further details about how Kartify can help set up and manage your store, contact us now.
Humans have a natural tendency to share their personal experiences with those in their close social circles. Whether it is the frustration of delayed delivery or the delight of discovering a new product they like, people pass on their experiences to friends and family in casual conversations.
What might seem like a simple chat can hold immense significance for E-commerce businesses like yours. Every time a customer recommends your online store, they are essentially providing you with valuable, trusted marketing for free. And this is the whole idea of Referral Marketing.
In this post, we will understand the ins and outs of Referral Marketing, including its definition, benefits, examples, and some best practises you can follow if you plan to adopt it for your online store.
What Is Referral Marketing, And How Does It Work?
Referral Marketing is a marketing strategy that encourages happy customers to advocate your brand to others in exchange for incentives. This word-of-mouth marketing tactic is more commonly known as a refer-a-friend program. Referral Marketing has been the go-to marketing method for all those E-commerce businesses looking to grow their sales without spending thousands of rupees on marketing. Overall, it’s a win-win situation for all parties involved.
The working of Referral Marketing is pretty straightforward.
You first create a Referral Program for your business, wherein you decide the incentive (type and amount) to give for every successful referral. Types of incentives could be coupons, discounts, gift cards, or cash rewards. The referrer is rewarded only if the referred person completes an order with the store. You also need to provide the existing customers with a unique link or a code that they can share with their friends and family. This step is essential to link the referrer, referred, and the incentive and complete a successful referral.
Types Of Referral Programs
There are several types of Referral Programs:
Standard Referral Program: In this, your loyal customers are encouraged to refer others to your E-commerce store. When a referred friend makes a purchase, the referrer receives an incentive. This is the most common type of referral program.
Double-Sided Referral Programs: In this, you reward both the referrer and the referred customer. This type of referral program is more capital-intensive but encourages customers to refer others more actively.
Tiered Referral Programs: In this, your customers earn increasing rewards as they refer more and more people. For example, a customer might receive a 5% discount for their first referral, 10% for the second, and so on. This can gamify the referral process and motivate customers to continue referring over time.
Points-Based Referral Programs: In this, instead of offering immediate incentives to customers, you let them earn points for each successful referral. These points can then be redeemed for products or discounts. This type of referral program can create a sense of achievement and encourage ongoing referrals.
How Is Referral Marketing Beneficial For E-commerce businesses?
Here are some key benefits you will enjoy by adopting referral marketing for your E-commerce business:
Build Trust Towards The Brand
When an existing customer refers your store or your product to someone else, it carries a strong endorsement. In other words, since these recommendations are coming from someone they know, it automatically builds trust in the minds of potential customers. Ultimately, trust is a key component of the customer journey in an industry like E-commerce, where customers cannot touch or feel the product before they buy.
Improved Sales With Targeted Marketing
When satisfied customers refer your products to their contacts, they are essentially matching your products with individuals who are likely to have similar needs or interests. This targeted approach increases the likelihood of converting leads into sales. Think of Referral Marketing as having your own brand advocates working on your behalf to identify and attract potential customers who are genuinely interested in your offerings.
Referral Marketing is all about gaining access to new audiences who may not have otherwise heard about your E-commerce store. As these referrals continue from one known person to another, it creates a cascading effect where your brand’s presence multiplies organically, creating a broader customer base. Moreover, since referrals often come from trusted sources, your potential customers are more likely to pay attention to your brand, leading to heightened awareness and recognition in the market.
Cost-Effective And Low Risk
Referral Marketing is one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies currently available. Traditional advertising and marketing can be expensive and uncertain when it comes to ROI. However, Referral Marketing revolves around the concept of rewarding customers only when their referrals result in actual sales. This means it is a “pay-for-performance” model where you spend marketing rupees only when you see actual results.
Easy To Track & Manage
There are several Referral Marketing tools available today that can accurately track the performance of your Referral Program. For instance, you will know who referred whom, which referrals converted into sales, and what incentives were delivered. Such visibility allows you to constantly refine your referral program for the best results. Additionally, the simplicity of managing Referral Programs means you can focus your time on other aspects of your store while your Referral Program continues to generate leads automatically.
E-commerce Referral Program Examples
Here are some examples of brands that have crafted some of the most successful referral programs today:
Source: Nykaa website
Nykaa, a leading beauty and wellness E-commerce business, has a highly successful Referral Program. With a dedicated landing page that talks about the benefits of referring a friend along with the incentives, Nykaa has got all their basics right.
Nykaa follows a double-sided Referral Program where both the referrer and the referred person get incentives. Both parties get cashback on their wallets, ensuring that they make their next purchase in Nykaa. The referral process is very easy, too. All you need to do is share the link to your favourite product with friends & family who have to shop using the same link.
Boat, a popular electronics and lifestyle brand, has implemented a Referral Program that benefits both its existing customers and their friends. When an existing customer refers a friend to Boat, both the referrer and the referred friend receive a discount of 100 rupees that can be redeemed on their next purchase. The discount is usually shared with the referrer via email 15 days after the referee completes their first purchase. This Referral Program reflects Boat’s commitment to providing value to its customers and strengthening its community of loyal customers.
Lenskart, the eyewear brand has one of the most user-friendly Referral Programs. Users can seamlessly refer their friends by either syncing their contacts through the Android or iOS app or by sharing a unique referral code. When contacts are synced, there’s no need for the friend to input a referral code during sign-up; the system automatically recognizes the connection.
After a successful purchase, both parties stand to gain ₹50 LK CASH+, which can be utilized on their eyewear purchases. It is a great example of a double-sided Referral Program.
Things You Need To Do Before You Start Your Referral Marketing Program
Here are some prerequisites you must fulfill before kickstarting your Referral Marketing Program. Following them will ensure that your Referral Marketing efforts bear fruits in the long run –
Focus On Building Your Brand
Let’s face it – your brand is the heart and soul of your business. It’s the impression that your customers will carry forward when interacting with your brand. To lay a strong foundation for Referral Marketing, it is important to strengthen your brand identity. After all, a well-defined brand that customers remember easily and believe in is more likely to be referred to, than the one they can’t recall. Also, a strong brand will generate a sense of pride and affiliation among your customers. When they refer your brand to their friends and relatives, they are indirectly quoting, “I am proud to be associated with this brand.”
Here are some tips to build your brand successfully:
Ensure consistency in your branding. Right from your logo to your website colours, everything should create a cohesive and memorable image in the customers’ minds.
Develop a distinctive brand voice that aligns with your brand’s personality, resonates with your audience, and is memorable for a long time.
Share your brand’s story, including its origins, challenges, and successes, on your website. A compelling narrative can create an emotional connection with customers.
Create a content marketing strategy that provides a lot of value to your audience. Constantly share informative, entertaining, or inspiring content that your customers will consume and have a positive experience with.
Make Sure Your Customers Like Your Product
No matter how big your incentive is, your customers are not going to recommend you if they don’t like your product. You must provide your customers with high-quality products that they love and use. This is an important step before asking for any referrals. If they like your product after using it, they will recommend your brand to others because they will believe that you will offer quality products to every customer.
Now, how do you know whether your customers like your products or not? Simple! Go online and find out if your brand is mentioned in social media posts or any review portals. You can even check customer reviews on your own website. If the reviews are largely positive, you can go ahead and ask for referrals from your customers.
Provide Exceptional Customer Service
Along with good branding and great products, you must also offer exceptional customer service. For instance, providing 24/7 live chat support for instant assistance, hassle-free return and refund process, safe and timely delivery, faster or free shipping, etc.
This is important because when issues about your product’s quality arise, excellent customer service can counter the negative situation. Customers who experience quick and effective resolution for their problems or get faster than usual services, often become more loyal and enthusiastic referrers.
By providing exceptional customer service, you are essentially creating positive experiences that customers want others to enjoy. Outstanding customer service also builds trust and reliability in your brand, both of which are key ingredients for referrals.
By successfully completing these steps, you will be able to build a loyal customer base that will be more than happy to refer your brand to their friends and family.
6 Effective Referral Marketing Strategies For E-commerce Businesses
When done right, Referral Marketing can harness the power of word-of-mouth marketing to acquire new customers and boost sales for your E-commerce store. Let us explore six effective Referral Marketing strategies that can help you achieve this:
Choose The Right Incentive For Referral Marketing
Your entire Referral Marketing Program revolves around incentives. Incentives give your customers a compelling reason to refer your products to others. So you need to carefully pick an incentive that is valuable enough to motivate your customers to take action. Here are some different types of incentives you can adopt for your Referral Marketing program:
Discounts and coupons: It offers the referrers a discount on their next order. It can be a percentage off the total purchase or a fixed amount of discount. Besides incentivizing customers to refer their friends, this incentive can drive repeat purchases from your existing customers. This type of incentive is suitable for all types of E-commerce businesses. Looking for inspiration? Checkout the best discount marketing examples from E-commerce businesses.
Points: These can be awarded for referrals, which can then be redeemed for discount coupons, gifts, or exclusive perks. Customers love the idea of accumulating points and getting rewarded for their loyalty. This is an ideal incentive for those stores where repeat business is common. For example, grocery.
Exclusive access: This type of incentive gives your customers a unique opportunity to be among the first to experience a new product after a successful referral. This incentive taps into the desire for novelty and exclusivity and is effective for businesses selling tech gadgets or entertainment products.
Freebies and Product Samples: In this type of incentive, you offer customers free products or samples in return for referring friends. This is quite appealing to customers because they get to experience your products without cost. This is ideal for stores selling cosmetics and food, where product quality and taste matter more than anything else.
Cash: It can either be a fixed amount or a percentage of the referee’s order value. The best thing about cash incentives is that even a small value can motivate people. In other words, even ₹50 or ₹100 will motivate people to take action. This is ideal if your product has a long buying cycle, such as furniture, appliances, or luxury items.
Do Research To Understand How Other Brands Are Doing Referral Marketing
Before launching your Referral Program, conduct thorough research and understand how your competitors are implementing Referral Marketing. Study their strategies, their success stories, and learn from their mistakes. This will offer valuable insights and help you fine-tune your own referral marketing program.
Visit the websites and social media profiles of these brands to gather information on their Referral Programs. Learn what worked well in terms of incentives, timing, and targeting.
You can learn about their promotional strategies by keeping an eye on their email marketing campaigns, social media posts, and other marketing efforts related to their Referral Program.
Competitor research can help you assess whether your program is competitive in the industry and make the necessary adjustments to stay competitive.
Ask For Referrals At The Time Of Maximum Conversion
When it comes to Referral Marketing, timing is very important. You need to know when it is a good time to ask for referrals. Your goal must be to pick a timeframe when the chances of conversion are high.
Humans like to feel appreciated. So when your customers feel appreciated due to something nice you have done for them (could be early delivery, quick resolution, or a surprise gift), it is probably the best time to ask for referrals. Do not wait for too long, as by then; your customers will have forgotten about their positive experiences. Similarly, do not ask for referrals from customers who have had a negative experience recently.
To find happy customers, you can closely monitor your website’s review section or your social media handle.
Try Email Referral Marketing
Sending emails can be an effective strategy for Referral Marketing. Once you create a referral program, you could send out emails to all those customers who have made purchases. This strategy is particularly useful if you are new and don’t have a large customer base yet. The key is to make the referral process as easy as possible. Here is Ugaoo, the online gardening store, sending out emails to existing customers to refer their friends and families:
Here are some tips to get your email Referral Marketing right:
Create an attention-grabbing subject line that motivates customers to open the email.
Always address the recipient by name. Wherever possible, use dynamic content to personalise the message based on their past interactions with your brand.
Clearly state what you want the customer to do. In this case, mention you want them to ‘Refer a Friend’. Use persuasive language to encourage action.
Emphasise the benefits of referring friends and family. That is, talk about the rewards they get and explain how it’s a win-win situation for both the recipient and their friends.
Include eye-catching visuals, such as images of your products, to make the email visually appealing.
Unless and until people know about your Referral Marketing program, they are not going to bring in new customers for your brand. You need to talk about your Referral Program in every possible channel and highlight the benefits of successful referrals.
One common place to promote your referral program is on your own website. You could talk about it on your homepage or add a link in your website menu so that customers can easily access information related to it. You could also talk about it on the order confirmation or thank you page. This will ensure that customers see it as soon as they complete a purchase.
The other option is to talk about it on social media platforms. You can also try WhatsApp marketing or SMS marketing if you have the budget.
Keep Track Of ROI On Your Referral Marketing Efforts
Thanks to modern Referral Marketing software, it’s very easy to track your Referral Program. You will instantly get access to information like how many referrals you have got in a month, what percentage of existing customers referred others, what percentage of referrals ended in sales, and so on. Many businesses also track the total revenue they make from referrals along with the AOV of an order made through a referral link versus the value of overall orders. Besides these metrics, you could also track the following:
Customer Participation Rate: Number of customers taking part in your referral program.
Referral Rate: Number of referrals made by each customer
Website Referral Traffic: Number of people who visited your website after receiving a referral link.
Conversion: Number of referred people who completed a purchase on your website.
Referral Marketing is one of the most effective ways to boost revenue growth and drive customer acquisition in an E-commerce business. Following the tips and strategies highlighted in this post can ensure that your Referral Program becomes successful and helps in fulfilling your business goals.
If you are looking for assistance to create and manage your referral program, you can partner with ANS Commerce. With ANS Commerce by your side, creating and managing your Referral Program becomes a breeze, ensuring that your customers can effortlessly refer your brand to their friends and family.
Besides referral marketing, ANS Commerce can handle other aspects of your E-commerce business, too, such as performance marketing, marketplace management, warehouse, and fulfillment, so that you can focus on more strategic components of your business. To know more about how we can help you, contact us now.
In the dynamic realm of modern marketing, where strategies shift in the blink of an eye, it’s easy for terms to get intertwined, blurring their definitions and implications. One such intriguing case is the conflation of Referral Marketing and Affiliate Marketing.
Referral Marketing and Affiliate Marketing have key similarities in terms of cost-effectiveness, expanding the audience pool, and driving sales revenue. However, their marketing strategies, audience targeting, and techniques are completely different.
In this blog, we explore the key differences between Affiliate Marketing and Referral Marketing, how they work, and which strategy is best suited to meet your company’s goals.
Let’s get started!
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate Marketing is a performance-based marketing strategy where businesses collaborate with third parties or affiliates to promote their products or services. Here, affiliates use unique tracking links provided by the company. These links help companies track traffic to their websites. This further helps affiliates earn commissions for each sale or action generated through it.
In addition, Affiliate Marketing can be implemented for more than just generating sales. For instance, it might encourage your users to download an app, click on a specific website, or get interested in trying your products or services for free. Due to its adaptability, you can further customize your Affiliate Marketing programs to suit specific business objectives.
How Does Affiliate Marketing Work?
Affiliate Marketing starts after the completion of the sign-up process. This process involves agreeing to the program’s terms, understanding how the commission structure works, and getting access to the necessary tools and resources.
For instance, imagine that you run an online fitness business that sells gym clothes, supplements, and fitness equipment. You want to expand your audience and boost revenues. Instead of relying solely on your marketing efforts, you decide to implement an Affiliate Marketing program. Here’s the step-by-step process for how Affiliate Marketing works:
Program set up by the company: You create an Affiliate Program and provide interested individuals (affiliates) with a unique tracking link. This link allows you to track the conversions generated by each affiliate.
Sign-up process by affiliates: After the program is set up, fitness enthusiasts, health bloggers, and other social media influencers who are interested in your products or services sign up for your Affiliate Program.
Promotions by affiliates: Affiliates promote your product through a variety of marketing channels. In addition to blogs and websites, these channels may also include social networking sites and email newsletters. For instance, a fitness influencer with a sizable Instagram following joins your program. She promotes your product, highlighting its benefits with a post that includes a link to it.
Audience Engagement: When potential customers click on an affiliate’s unique link and visit your website, a tracking mechanism records this action. This link guarantees that the affiliate will receive credit for your product introduction.
Conversion and Commission: If the visitor buys your product after landing on the page through the affiliate’s unique link, we can consider it as a conversion.Affiliates receive a commission for the conversion. This commission can be a percentage of the overall sale value, or a specified fixed amount for each sale.
Payment to affiliate: Payments are typically made once a target is completed or on a regular basis.
Thus, affiliate marketing makes use of the advantages of both affiliates and businesses to build a mutually beneficial ecosystem in the ever-expanding world of E-commerce.
Example of Affiliate Marketing
One prominent Indian E-commerce brand that employs Affiliate Marketing is “Nykaa.” A diverse group of people, such as beauty bloggers, makeup artists, skincare enthusiasts, fashion influencers, and content creators in the beauty sector, can be Nykaa affiliates.
Image Source: Nykaa Website
Nykaa’s affiliates are individuals who have a strong online presence and a significant following on social media platforms, blogs, and YouTube channels. These affiliates work with Nykaa to market their products to their audience and receive payments when customers buy things through their affiliate links.
For instance, here’s a YouTube video by one of the beauty bloggers named Mridul Sharma, who has made a YouTube video on “Nykaa’s Top 50 Products Under ₹500”.
Image Source : Youtube
As shown in the image, she has linked all of Nykaa’s products in her description, and at the beginning is a disclaimer about affiliate links. An affiliate receives a percentage of sales made on Nykaa’s website after customers click on one of their tracking links. The tracking link makes sure that the right affiliate is given credit for the sale.
What is Referral Marketing?
Referral marketing is a strategic approach employed by businesses to encourage their existing customers to bring in new customers. In this marketing approach, referrals or brand advocates promote your product or service to new customers. When brand advocates successfully refer a friend or relative, they are rewarded with benefits like discounts, store credits, gift cards, or special services.
How Does Referral Marketing Work?
Let’s go through an example that explains the step-by-step process of how Referral Marketing works.
Imagine an E-commerce brand that sells organic skincare products. They launched a Referral Program to expand their customer base.
Enrollment of brand advocates for the program: The E-commerce brand creates a Referral Program and asks its existing customers to sign up as brand advocates.
Sharing the referral links provided by the company: After enrollment, a brand advocate receives a shareable referral link or code provided by the company. A brand advocate further shares the referral link with friends through various channels, like emails or direct messages.
Action of the referred friend: One of the referred friends clicks on the referral link, visits the company’s website to explore the offerings, and decides to make his or her first purchase.
Reward for both parties: With the use of this special link, the business can keep track of every referral and reward both parties by providing different benefits. These benefits completely depend on the company’s reward system.
Thus, Referral Marketing creates a win-win situation. Additionally, it expands a company’s customer base by using trust and personal connections.
Example of Referral Marketing
Myntra, one of India’s leading online fashion and lifestyle retailers, had a Referral Program known as the “Myntra Insider” program. Customers who join the Myntra Insider program can refer other people. Both the referrer and the referred friend can earn Myntra Insider points or additional rewards after signing up using the referral link.
Image Source: Google
Likewise, Myntra also promotes its referral advertising through its website and social media posts as shown in the image below.
Image Source: Myntra Website
As shown in the example above, Myntra has used the “Shout and Earn” phrase to entice its customers to spread the word about its annual sale. It’s a win-win strategy in which customers and the people they suggest benefit, and Myntra grows its customer base through reliable referrals.
Referral Marketing Vs Affiliate Marketing: 10 Key Differences
Here are some important factors to take into account that explain the differences between Referral Marketing and Affiliate Marketing.
Relationship With The Brand
Affiliate and Referral Marketing differ significantly in their relationship with the brand they promote.
In Affiliate Marketing, the relationship with the brand is more professional, as affiliates work with the brand to promote its products or services. Since the affiliates earn the commission based on the conversion, their primary focus is often on financial benefits. On the other hand, Referral Marketing focuses on the personal relationships between existing brands. Here, brand advocates share their positive experiences of products or services with friends and family.
Both Affiliate and Referral Marketing employ different reward structures to motivate their respective participants.
Affiliate Marketing frequently works with influencers or celebrities, providing them with commissions and free products. On the other hand, Referral Marketing focuses on rewarding both parties with discounts, gifts, rewards, or exclusive deals where the purchaser benefits from a one-time referral reward. Here, the reward system depends on the nature of a business, its target audience, and the objectives of the marketing plan.
Medium Of Share
Affiliate Marketing uses online platforms, such as social media, blogs, and websites, to promote the products or services of the brand. They create a variety of content, provide product reviews, and create informative videos of products and their benefits. On the other hand, in Referral marketing, brand advocates share referral links to their personal connections through one-on-one text messages or display them on their website or youtube channel.
Cost of Marketing Campaign
In Affiliate Marketing, businesses often pay affiliates a commission for every conversion that takes place through their effort. The other cost includes the initial planning and program set-up process. On the other hand, in Referral Marketing, the primary cost includes setting up the referral program and rewarding the brand advocates for successful referrals and providing discounts or benefits to the referred person. Since these expenses are frequently fixed, planning for them is more secure.
The Means Of Compensation
Affiliates frequently receive financial rewards in the form of commissions, depending on activities or sales. On the other hand, Referral Programs offer non-monetary rewards, such as discounts, store credit, free subscriptions, or cashback, primarily benefiting existing customers who successfully refer new customers.
Trust And Credibility
The popularity of the affiliates is the key factor that builds trust and credibility among the users. Affiliate reviews are highly trusted by their audience, which makes their promotions influential. On the other side, Referral Marketing relies on personal trust and genuine recommendations from satisfied customers. Both strategies rely on trust, but they do so in different ways and with different customer bases.
When it comes to the audience, Affiliate Marketing’s target market goes beyond friends and family. They reach a wider audience (followers or subscribers) through their social media posts or videos.
In Referral Marketing, a target audience is a close group of family, friends, or colleagues.
Customer Lifetime Value
Referral programs have a positive impact on businesses with higher customer lifetime value, as it completely depends on the recommendations provided by the brand advocates. On the other side, businesses with low customer lifetime value can find Affiliate Programs more effective.
If you choose affiliates with a significant number of followers, you can gain a higher number of visitors, which can convert into potential customers. On the other hand, referral programs will not be able to boost higher numbers of sales as the audience is limited to a small group of people.
After-Sales Relationship Between Marketer and Lead
In Referral Marketing, there is already a relationship between the referrer and the purchaser. Here, they have a long-lasting relationship even after the purchase is made. However, it is different between affiliates and buyers, as their relationship ends after the purchase is completed.
Similarities Between Referral Marketing and Affiliate Marketing
Here are some of the similarities between Referral Marketing and Affiliate Marketing:
Customer Centric Approach
Both programs focus on the customer experience. Affiliate Programs provide value to their audience by promoting products that align with their interests. Whereas, Referral Programs depend on brand advocates’ recommendations. In both cases, the focus remains solely on the customer’s perspective, whether it’s through targeted content from affiliates or genuine feedback from satisfied customers.
Both Affiliate Marketing and referral marketing use rewards as a motivating factor to encourage people to take initiative in the promotion of products or services. Referral Marketing focuses on existing customers, whereas affiliate marketing targets external partners with online platforms.
Cost Effective Marketing
When it comes to cost-effectiveness, both of these strategies are quite similar. In Affiliate Marketing, businesses provide commissions to affiliates when there are visible outcomes, such as sales or clicks on websites. Whereas, in Referral Marketing, the company provides different rewards to both parties when the brand advocates bring in new customers.
Here, the Affiliatesintroduce your products and services to a larger audience through social platforms. Whereas, referral programs rely on existing customers to recommend your product to their friends or family. Therefore, both of these strategies help businesses expand their reach and drive sales.
Referral Marketing Vs Affiliate Marketing: Which One To Choose?
Choosing between Referral Marketing and Affiliate Marketing completely depends on the brand’s business goals. Referral Marketing works best for you if you want to grow your customer base. As it involves minimum cost, it is the best option for businesses operating on a tight budget or seeking a cost-effective strategy to expand.
On the other hand, Affiliate Marketing works best for companies seeking to reach a larger audience quickly. It is a powerful tool for companies to enter niche markets. However, the decision should align with your business’s unique goals, target audience, and available resources.
Need help with increasing your E-commerce profits?
Affiliate marketing is a popular advertising method where you collaborate with individuals, known as affiliates or influencers, to promote your brand. You pay commissions to these affiliates for every lead or click they generate for your brand. While you can use affiliate marketing on any digital channel, many businesses prefer Instagram due to its impressive engagement rates.
In fact, Instagram has a median engagement rate of 1.22% – a whopping 13.5 times higher than Facebook posts and 27 times higher than a Tweet. If you’re interested in learning more about Instagram affiliate marketing, you’ve come to the right place.
In this article, we will cover the basics of Instagram affiliate marketing, including its benefits, steps to run, and best practices to follow.
Why Should E-commerce Brands Use Affiliate Marketing On Instagram?
The growing popularity of Instagram affiliate marketing is evident by the fact that 93% of businesses on Instagram use social media influencers (affiliate marketers) to build brand awareness. Let us find out why so many E-commerce brands use affiliate marketing on Instagram:
People Love Recommendations
Humans have a natural tendency to seek recommendations from trusted sources before making purchasing decisions. Around 49% of people rely on recommendations from influencers when making purchase decisions. When these recommendations come from affiliates on a popular and reliable platform like Instagram, it carries significant weight. Therefore, partnering with the right affiliates on Instagram can help you boost your brand’s reputation and drive sales.
It Has A High ROI
The best part about affiliate marketing is that you don’t have to reach out to celebrity influencers to promote your E-commerce brand. Instagram is inundated with micro-influencers (less than 100K followers) who will be happy to promote your products for a nominal affiliate fee. This can drastically boost the returns on your investments in Instagram affiliate marketing.
Better Reach To Larger Audience
According to the latest data, Instagram has 1.628 billion users. That’s 1.628 billion potential customers you can tap into! All you need to do is partner with relevant affiliates and influencers who resonate well with different audience segments like millennials, Gen Zs, and Gen Alphas. This scalability is important, especially for fast-growing E-commerce brands.
How To Start Affiliate Marketing On Instagram?
Here are five simple steps to get started with affiliate marketing on Instagram –
Step 1: Create An Affiliate Marketing Action Plan
Before you kickstart your affiliate marketing on Instagram, it’s essential to lay down a well-thought-out action plan. This plan should ideally encompass your marketing goals and target audience.
Possible goals could be sales generation, brand awareness, or better user engagement with your brand. Having clear goals and objectives will guide your affiliate marketing efforts in the right direction.
When it comes to the target audience, you need to define the demographic characteristics of your ideal customers. It could include factors such as age, gender, location, education level, and occupation. This information will help you identify affiliates whose followers align with your target audience.
Step 2: Decide On Your Commissions
Commissions are the amount you pay an affiliate for each sale they generate for your E-commerce brand. There is no right or wrong amount when it comes to commissions. It has to be fair to both you and the affiliate while also providing sufficient incentive to the affiliate to promote your products.
Now there are several ways to determine the right commission. One way to do this is by analyzing the profit margins of your business. After all, commissions are going to come out of your profits. So you need to decide the percentage of profits you are willing to sacrifice for your affiliate marketing program.
You can also find out how much your competitors pay their affiliates. This can give you a good idea about the industry standards and what can keep affiliates happy in your industry.
Along with the commission rate, setting your payment terms is important. Typically, payouts happen once in 2 or 3 months. This will give sufficient time for your brand to accommodate failed orders, returns, and exchanges.
Step 3: Choose The Right Affiliate Partners
When picking affiliate partners, there is only one mantra to follow- the quality of your affiliate is way more important than the quantity. You do not have to collaborate with hundreds of affiliates to boost your store’s sales. Even if you pick a handful, make sure they serve as strong voices for your brand and products.
The easiest way to find affiliates is by analyzing your competitors’ partnerships. This can provide insights into which affiliates are influential within your niche. Research their content, engagement rates, and audience demographics. Selecting an affiliate with a smaller, engaged audience is better than partnering with one having a large but disengaged audience. Selecting affiliate marketers whose values and content align with your brand is also important.
Step 4: Share Your Unique Links Or Codes With Affiliates
Equip your affiliates with all the necessary resources and information they need to promote your products. Sharing unique affiliate links or codes is a crucial part of the process. These links or codes enable you to track the sales generated by each affiliate so that you can accurately calculate commission payouts.
Communicate the guidelines for using the affiliate links or codes. For instance, provide instructions on how the affiliates should incorporate links into their content. You can even provide content guidelines to the affiliates so that your brand message is consistent.
Lastly, outline the objectives you want to achieve with the affiliate marketing campaign to the affiliates. Establish a timeline for the campaign, including start and end dates. This will help the affiliates better plan their content creation and promotion activities on Instagram.
Step 5: Build Your Brand With Affiliate Marketing An Instagram
Your job is not over once you have started running your affiliate marketing campaign. You need to consistently track campaign performance, build long-term relationships with the affiliates, and keep building your brand.
For instance, you need to analyze key metrics such as clicks, conversions, click-through rates, and revenue generated from influencer content. This data will guide your decision-making, help identify affiliates helping build your brand, and reward them for their efforts.
You also need to encourage open dialogue with the affiliates. You can seek their input on campaigns, products, and marketing strategies that can improve your brand. At the same time, be readily available to address any queries or concerns they may have. Prompt and clear communication helps build a strong working relationship and boosts their confidence in promoting your brand.
Lastly, you need to implement an approval process for affiliate content. Reviewing and approving posts before they go live guarantees that the content adheres to your brand’s values and messaging.
Instagram Affiliate Marketing Examples By E-commerce Brands
Let us now look at 3 popular brands from different industries that have mastered the art of affiliate marketing.
Nykaa, the cosmetic brand, has built an affiliate partnership with Ankush Bahuguna, a rising micro-influencer on Instagram. Ankush has nearly 500K followers due to his engaging posts capturing various fashion and beauty trends. Ankush’s collaboration with Nykaa involves creating Instagram posts that talk about different products from Nykaa’s extensive range. Through these posts, he effectively showcases the products, highlights their features, and shares his personal experiences. He also offers authentic reviews of Nykaa’s products, discussing how they have worked for him and emphasizing their effects.
Source: Boat Instagram Account
The collaboration between Boat and Aadar Malik on Instagram demonstrates how a brand can leverage an influencer’s creative content to resonate with audiences and establish a strong brand presence. This collaboration is part of their popular friendship band contest campaign. In this example, the influencer has captivated Boat followers through his creative and funny compositions. While he doesn’t directly promote Boat’s products here, his artistic pursuits align with Boat’s ethos.
Source: Pepperfry Instagram Account
Pepperfry’s collaboration with Sughandha Gangwar(mi_colourfulworld) is a prime example of how strategic affiliate partnerships can generate impactful content that effectively promotes a brand’s offerings. This micro-influencer with 11.4K followers shares aesthetically pleasing visuals of Pepperfry’s products within real-life home settings. By artfully integrating these products into relatable spaces, she captures her audience’s attention and imagination and directs it toward Pepperfry’s products.
Strategies To Making More Affiliate Sales On Instagram: For Affiliates
Here are some key strategies specifically tailored to affiliates for making more affiliate sales on Instagram:
1. Label Promoted Products As Paid Partnerships
Transparency is crucial in affiliate marketing. Your affiliate must clearly label the posts featuring your products as paid partnerships or advertisements. This will not only build trust with your audience but also ensure compliance with Instagram’s guidelines.
Instagram offers a “Paid Partnership” tag that your affiliates can use to label their posts. This tag appears below the Instagram handle and signifies to the users that the affiliate is compensated for the promotion. In the below Instagram post, you can see the words ‘Paid Partnership’ just below the Instagram handle.
Alternatively, the affiliate can include a clear disclosure within the captions. For example, they can use phrases like “this post contains affiliate links” or “This is a paid promotion” and place them at the beginning of the caption to make it easily visible.
2. Add Product Promotion Links To Instagram Bio
One of the most direct ways to drive affiliate sales on Instagram is by adding product or brand links to your affiliates’ Instagram bios. This strategy makes it convenient for their followers to access and purchase your products, increasing the likelihood of conversions. Here is a popular Instagram influencer who has added Myntra’s link to his Instagram bio:
Instagram initially allowed users to include only one link in their bio, which hindered many affiliates from promoting multiple products at the same time. Instagram then increased the count to 5, but even this was not sufficient. Luckily, there are several workarounds for this.
One of them is to use a tool like LinkTree. It can create a landing page with multiple affiliate product links. This allows your affiliates to place just one link in their bio, which then leads to a page where their followers can choose among various products.
3. Promote Affiliate Links Via Instagram Stories And Posts
Your affiliates can leverage both Instagram Stories and regular posts to promote your affiliate links. Both these formats allow your brand to engage with the affiliate’s followers directly. Engaging, informative, and visually appealing stories and posts revolving around your products or brand can make the users curious and encourage them to click on your affiliate link to know more about you and your products.
Here is an Instagram influencer who has promoted the brand Flipkart using engaging storytelling:
Here are some ideas to promote the affiliate products via Stories or Posts:
Using storytelling, anecdotes, or relatable scenarios around the product to capture followers’ attention and encourage them to click the link.
Comparing the affiliate product with similar alternatives and explain why it stands out. They can even highlight the unique benefits that make it worth purchasing.
Engaging the followers with interactive elements like polls and questions. Your affiliate can ask the followers about their preferences or needs related to the product and then direct them to the affiliate link for a solution.
Your affiliate can take their audience on a “day in their life” journey, showing them how they use your product in their day-to-day life.
4. Share Product Demonstrations And Reviews
Your affiliate marketing will bear fruit only when your affiliate’s followers know, like, and trust your brand enough to purchase the products recommended by the affiliate. So your affiliate must help their followers do just that. More importantly, the affiliate must achieve this without letting the followers exit their Instagram feed in search of answers. Wondering how this is possible?
Simple. Ask your affiliates to demonstrate how to use the product or share authentic reviews about it. Such demonstrations and genuine reviews will tell the followers that they genuinely like this product and want their followers to experience the same happiness using it. If the followers are convinced of the benefits of the product after going through the demonstration, they will click on the link to know more about the product.
Here is an affiliate and a popular influencer demonstrating and talking about the key features of a hair straightening brush of electronics brand Philips –
5. Use Hashtags To Expand Your Reach
Ask your affiliates to use relevant and popular hashtags in their promotion posts to increase affiliate links’ visibility. When used strategically, hashtags can expose your affiliate products to users who are interested in similar topics, products, or trends.
The key is to research and incorporate hashtags that are relevant to your products. You can find relevant hashtags using competition research or with the help of tools like Tagsfinder,Inflact, and Toolzu. Here is an affiliate post with all the right hashtags added –
It is important to incorporate a combination of popular hashtags (with high usage) and niche-specific hashtags (with moderate usage). This balances your reach with the likelihood of being noticed among a specific audience. A word of caution, though, before adding any hashtag to the post, ask the affiliate to double-check that it’s not prohibited.
Strategies To Making More Affiliate Sales On Instagram: For E-commerce Brands
Here are some key strategies that you must adopt to help your affiliates drive more sales on Instagram:
6. Promote Affiliate Posts On Your Brand’s Website
This is a strategic approach to expand your affiliate marketing efforts beyond Instagram. By promoting your affiliates’ posts on your own website, you can leverage your existing website’s traffic, engage a broader audience, and increase the visibility of your affiliate partnerships.
You must designate a dedicated section on your website to showcase your affiliate partnerships. Ideally, it should be a section on your home page where you feature affiliate product reviews, recommendations, and related content. Here is an example where Loom, the popular clothing brand, has created a separate section for influencers to showcase their products.
Source: The Loom
You could also show it on the product page. But keep your affiliate section on your website up-to-date. Regularly review and refresh your reviews, recommendations, and any product-related information.
7. Run Ads On Affiliate Posts To Further Boost Sales
If you have a bigger budget, you could always run ads around affiliate posts to further boost sales. You could convert the affiliate’s post into a sponsored post, which can be a great way to increase followers and engagement. Instagram-sponsored posts also let you target specific audiences by filtering them based on demographics, location, interests, behaviors, and purchase intent. Many businesses use this strategy to support their awareness campaign.
The other option is to run a paid search campaign via Google ads. You can direct the user to the influencer’s post to drive more engagement. Yes, you could always direct the user to your store directly from the ad. But directing them to Instagram posts is pretty useful if:
The affiliate is adding a lot of value to the product or the brand
The promoted product is a high-ticket item and requires a lot of social proof.
The affiliate is a big influencer or a celebrity who brings additional visibility to your brand.
The other option is to embed affiliate posts on the landing page, which the ads direct to.
8. Track Affiliate Performance
This strategy is essential to gauge the effectiveness of your campaign and optimize it further. By monitoring key metrics and analyzing data, you can allocate appropriate budgets to the right affiliates to maximize your earnings. Here are some metrics you must focus on –
Click-Through Rates (CTR): Measure the CTR for each affiliate’s content. A higher CTR signifies engaging content that entices users to interact with the affiliate’s links.
Conversion rates: This metric reveals how effectively an affiliate’s content is turning clicks into actual sales or desired actions.
Revenue generated by an affiliate: This metric can help you calculate the return on investment for every affiliate.
Engagement metrics: This includes user actions like likes, comments, shares, and swipe-ups. Like CTRs, these metrics indicate if the affiliate’s content is resonating with your audience or not.
After measuring the metrics, you may want to compare each affiliate’s performance against the goals you’ve set. This evaluation indicates whether affiliates are meeting, exceeding, or falling short of expectations. It is also important to keep an open line of communication with your affiliates. Regularly discuss their performance, provide feedback, and offer suggestions for improvement.
For an E-commerce brand, Instagram affiliate marketing is a great way to boost brand presence, engage audiences, and drive conversions. In a world where customer engagement is paramount for E-commerce businesses to succeed, the significance of Instagram affiliate marketing can’t be denied.
To execute a successful Instagram affiliate marketing campaign, partnering with a seasoned expert can make all the difference. ANS Commerce, a popular name in the E-commerce industry, offers affiliate marketing services along with performance marketing and marketplace management. To know more about how we can help, book a demo now.
Picture this: You’ve just crafted a stunning E-commerce website, putting the user first in every design decision. But when you eagerly check search engine results, your website is nowhere to be found. On the flip side, you could have gone all out optimizing your site, and hooray! It’s ranking on the first page. But hold on, as soon as a visitor lands on your site, they’re met with a clunky mess that’s impossible to navigate. Naturally, their first instinct is to bolt!
The solution is to find the right balance b/w SEO and web design. In this post, we’ve got you covered with everything you need to know about SEO website design, along with some top-notch SEO practices to help you strike that balance between the two.
What Is SEO Website Design?
SEO website design is the way to make your E-commerce website visible on search engines and give shoppers a good experience. SEO and website design are often seen as two different things, but they are actually very connected. SEO involves optimizing your website so that it appears higher in search results when people search for specific keywords. Website design is about making your website look good and be easy to use.
A good SEO website design will use both SEO and website design principles to create a site that is both visible on search engines and enjoyable for shoppers.
Why Is SEO-Friendly Web Design Important?
An SEO-friendly website design offers a plethora of benefits that you definitely don’t want to miss:
Search Engine Visibility: Google Search Engine has a 95.45% market share in India. A website that is optimized for search engines is more likely to be discovered by users. When your site ranks higher in search results, it becomes more visible to potential visitors. This increased visibility can lead to more organic traffic and, subsequently, more opportunities for conversions.
User Experience: Many aspects of SEO-friendly design, such as fast loading times, mobile responsiveness, and intuitive navigation, also contribute to a positive user experience. When users have a good experience on your site, they’re more likely to stay longer, explore more pages, and return in the future. In fact, 88% of first time visitors are less likely to return to your website, if they have a bad user experience.
Higher Conversion Rates: Effective SEO strategies often align with good design practices, such as clear calls to action (CTAs) and user-friendly layouts. When your site is designed with both users and search engines in mind, it can lead to higher conversion rates, whether that means making a purchase, signing up for a newsletter, or completing another desired action.
Competitive Advantage: In today’s digital landscape, competition is fierce. SEO-friendly design gives you an edge by ensuring your site meets the standards that search engines value. This can help you outrank competitors and attract more organic traffic, ultimately boosting your online presence.
Long-Term Benefits: SEO is a long-term strategy that continues to deliver results over time. When you invest in SEO-friendly design, you’re making an investment in the future success of your website. Well-optimized sites can maintain their visibility and rankings, even as algorithms and trends evolve.
Cost-Effectiveness: While there may be initial costs associated with optimizing your site for SEO, the long-term benefits often outweigh these expenses. Compared to other forms of online advertising, maintaining a high-quality, SEO-friendly website can be a cost-effective way to drive consistent, targeted traffic.
Cross-Device Compatibility: With the increasing use of mobile devices, having a responsive design that works seamlessly across various screen sizes is essential. An SEO-friendly website is more likely to provide a positive experience on both desktop and mobile devices, catering to a broader audience.
Now that we understand how crucial it is to have a website design that’s good for SEO, let’s look at some effective tips to make your website really impressive.
Best Practices To Follow For SEO-friendly Web Design
In the fiercely competitive E-commerce space, standing out is essential. To rise above the rest, here are the SEO website design best practices to follow:
Take Care Of The Fundamentals
Domain Name & Hosting
Your domain name is your online identity, and choosing the right one is crucial for branding and SEO. Aim for a domain name that aligns with your business and incorporates relevant keywords. Additionally, opt for a reputable hosting provider to ensure your website performs optimally, offering a seamless browsing experience to visitors.
Example: For an E-commerce website selling handmade jewellery, an ideal domain name could be “craftedgems.com,” which not only represents the brand but also incorporates the relevant keyword “gems.”
ProTip: Don’t opt for a domain name that is too long, complicated, or irrelevant to your business, such as “TheBestOnlineStoreforJewelryBySaraAndMike.com.
One brilliant example here would be that of Lenskart, an eyewear retail chain. The domain name, lenskart.com, is relevant to the product niche, unique, and brandable.
Crawling And Accessibility
To make sure search engines can find your online store, it must be accessible to their crawlers. Use a robot.txt file and XML sitemap to help search engine bots navigate and index your site effectively. Additionally, conduct regular accessibility checks to ensure people visiting your site, including those with disabilities, can access your content effortlessly.
Information Architecture And Structuring Of Website
A well-organized information architecture is the backbone of an E-commerce site. Create clear and intuitive categories and subcategories for your products, enabling visitors to navigate through your products with ease. This logical structure doesn’t just make it easier for users but also helps search engines grasp your website’s structure, which can boost how well you rank.
ProTip: Organize your E-commerce site with clear and intuitive categories and subcategories, like “Electronics > Smartphones > Android Phones” for an electronics store. However, be careful not to overwhelm shoppers with too many categories and subcategories that make navigation confusing and convoluted.
Here’s an example from The Souled Store, a leading apparel brand:
Source: The souled store
Keep your URL structure concise, descriptive, and user-friendly. Short, keyword-rich URLs are more likely to attract clicks and improve search engine rankings. Ensure your URLs reflect the content of each page accurately, making it easier for both shoppers and search engines to understand your site’s organization.
ProTip: Optimize your URLs with relevant keywords, making them descriptive and user-friendly, such as “outdoor-furniture/wooden-patio-chairs” for a furniture E-commerce website. Don’t use generic and meaningless URLs, like “product123” or “item456,” as they provide no context to shoppers or search engines.
In June 2023, 75.06% of all online traffic came from mobile in India. This goes on to show that having a mobile-friendly E-commerce website is no longer an option; it’s a necessity. Responsive design guarantees that your website adjusts smoothly to different screen sizes and devices. Search engines prioritize mobile-friendly websites, which can lead to better rankings in mobile search results, higher traffic, and improved user engagement.
Let’s take the example of the famous E-commerce giant, Nykaa. Here’s what their desktop version looks like.
This is what their mobile-optimized version looks like, with easy navigation:
Source: Nykaa App
Thumb-Friendly Navigation: Optimize your mobile navigation by placing essential menu items and buttons within easy reach of the user’s thumb. This reduces the need for excessive scrolling and enhances usability.
Streamlined Checkout Process: Make buying on mobile easier by reducing the steps and info needed. Let people check out as guests and use mobile-friendly payments for quicker purchases.
Clear Call-to-Action Buttons: Use prominent and easily tappable call-to-action buttons throughout your E-commerce site. Clearly label buttons such as “Add to Cart,” “Buy Now,” and “Checkout” to guide shoppers seamlessly through the buying journey.
Improve Page Speed
Nobody likes a slow-loading website, including search engines. The speed at which your webpage loads is really important for how it ranks in search results. Making your E-commerce site faster is a must-do. The ideal load speed is typically 2-3 seconds. Compress images, reduce HTTP requests, and minify code to decrease loading times.
A quicker website makes users happier and lowers bounce rates, potentially boosting your search engine rankings. In fact, the chance of a bounce increases by 32% when a page load time goes from one to three seconds.
ProTip: Implement lazy loading for images and videos, loading content as shoppers scroll down the page, reducing initial load time. You can also limit the number of web fonts and use font subsets to reduce the impact on loading speed.
Make Website Navigation Simple
A well-designed and intuitive navigation system is critical for E-commerce websites. Create a clear and organized menu structure that allows shoppers to find products effortlessly. Don’t give shoppers too many choices all at once, and make sure important pages are easy to find from anywhere on the site.
Let’s take an example of an E-commerce website. Here’s what a bad architecture would look like:
Deals & Discounts
About Our Company
Terms & Conditions
Now, here’s what a great website optimized for an easy navigation (and some juicy traffic) would look like:
Shop by Category
Home & Living
Beauty & Personal Care
Notice how, in the former, the lack of clear categories makes it challenging for shoppers to know where to find the products they are interested in, leading to a negative user experience and potentially lost sales.
High-quality and easily readable content is essential for your product descriptions and other site elements. Ensure that your content is clear, concise, and free from grammatical errors. Engaging and informative content not only helps customers make informed decisions but also positively influences search engine rankings.
It’s crucial to select a font size, typeface, and color palette that optimize legibility and make your content easily digestible. Consider a sans-serif typeface for a modern, clean look, and aim for a font size that’s comfortable to read on various devices.
The color scheme you choose can also affect readability. Ensure a high contrast between text and background to avoid eye strain. Dark text on a light background or vice versa often works well. Keep in mind that consistent typography and a coherent color palette create a more visually appealing and professional impression.
For example, see how wonderfully Juicy Chemistry, a skincare brand, has laid out its core values here.
Source: Juicy Chemistry
Here’s another example from The House of Masaba, a premium lifestyle brand. Notice how the product description is to the point, and covers everything a buyer would like to know about the product.
Source: House of Masaba
ProTip: Maintain consistent fonts, colours, and styles throughout the website for a cohesive and user-friendly experience.
Target Right Keywords
Perform comprehensive keyword research to pinpoint the most pertinent and effective keywords for your E-commerce site. Concentrate on longer phrases that match your products and what customers are looking for. Integrate these keywords smoothly into your product names, descriptions, and metadata to make sure your site is well-tuned for the right search queries.
Here are some pointers to keep in mind:
Long-Tail Keyword Optimization: Target long-tail keywords specific to your products. For example, instead of just “shoes,” optimize for “comfortable running shoes for women” or “stylish leather boots for men.” Long-tail keywords attract more targeted traffic and have a higher chance of conversion.
Keyword Mapping for Product Categories: Implement a keyword mapping strategy that aligns relevant keywords with specific product category pages. This ensures that each page targets unique keywords and enhances the overall keyword diversity of your website.
User-Intent-Based Keywords: Optimize your content with keywords that align with user intent. Understand what shoppers are searching for and create content that directly addresses their needs, preferences, and pain points.
Competitor Keyword Analysis: Conduct thorough keyword research and analyze the keywords used by your competitors. Identify high-value, low-competition keywords that can give your website a competitive edge.
Seasonal and Trending Keywords: Stay updated with industry trends and seasonal changes. Incorporate trending keywords into your content and product descriptions to attract seasonal shoppers and capitalize on current demands.
Using descriptive alt tags for your images serves two essential purposes. First, it provides context for visually impaired shoppers, improving website accessibility. Second, search engines rely on alt tags to understand the content of images, potentially leading to higher rankings in image search results.
Here are some examples of good versus bad alt tags.
Alt=”Handcrafted Artisan Ceramic Coffee Mug – Set of 4″
Image File Names
Renaming your image files with relevant keywords can have a positive impact on SEO. Avoid generic filenames like “image1.jpg” and instead use descriptive file names that reflect the image’s content. This practice can make your images more discoverable and enhance your site’s overall SEO.
SEO Optimize Metadata
Create distinct and captivating meta titles and descriptions for every page on your online store. Well-optimized metadata helps search engines understand the relevance of your content, potentially leading to higher rankings. Additionally, well-written meta descriptions can encourage shoppers to click through to your site, improving click-through rates and organic traffic.
Here’s an example of how Sugar Cosmetics ensures that the person looking for a long-lasting lipstick would find their product by highlighting the same in their meta description.
Source: Sugar Cosmetics on Google Search
When it comes to meta titles, while it is great to have a short and crisp meta title, it is also important to ensure they are specific, descriptive, and include important details about the products. Here are some examples:
Good Meta Titles
Bad Meta Titles
Elegant Women’s Floral Print Summer Dress
Products for Women
Cold Pressed Organic Coconut Oil – 500ml Bottle
Latest Android & iOS Smartphones – Best Deals
Phones for Sale
Genuine Brown Leather Men’s Wallet – Multiple Card Slots
ProTip: Don’t use duplicate or generic meta tags across multiple pages, missing the opportunity to differentiate your pages in search results. Remember, the more unique the content, the more chances of ranking higher on the SERPs.
Make Sure Pages Are Indexed
Ensure that all important pages of your E-commerce website are correctly indexed by search engines. Apply the “noindex” tag to pages you don’t want showing up in search results. This is useful for pages with the same content or pages that show search results within your website. Regularly check for any indexation issues and address them promptly to maximize your site’s visibility.
Here are a few simple tips you can put into action:
Canonical URLs: Use canonical URLs to avoid duplicate content problems and consolidate similar product pages under a single preferred URL for better indexation.
Structured Data Markup: Add structured data markup (e.g., Schema.org) to product pages for detailed information, improving the chances of rich snippets and better indexation.
Internal Linking Strategy: Develop a strategic internal linking structure, interconnecting relevant product pages and categories to help search engine crawlers discover and index all essential pages.
Follow Web Accessibility Guidelines
Adhering to web accessibility guidelines is not only a moral imperative but also crucial for SEO and user experience. Make sure your website is accessible to all shoppers, including those with disabilities. This not only enhances inclusivity but also reflects positively on search engine rankings.
Wondering where to begin? This can help:
Alternative Text (Alt Text) for Images: Provide descriptive and meaningful alt text for all images, including product images and graphics. This helps visually impaired shoppers understand the content of the images through screen readers.
Accessible Forms: Design forms with proper labels, fieldsets, and legends. Ensure that form elements are easily navigable and usable with keyboard inputs, making it convenient for shoppers with mobility impairments.
Consistent and Intuitive Navigation: Create a clear and consistent navigation structure with intuitive labels. shoppers should easily understand where they are on the website and how to navigate to different sections using keyboard navigation.
Accessible Color Contrast: Ensure that text and background colors have sufficient contrast to make the content readable for shoppers with visual impairments. Use tools to check color contrast ratios and make adjustments as needed.
Keyboard Accessibility: Test the website’s functionality using only a keyboard, without relying on a mouse. Make sure all interactive elements, such as buttons and links, are easily accessible and operable through keyboard navigation.
Captioned Videos and Transcripts: Include closed captions for all videos and provide text transcripts for audio content. This ensures that shoppers with hearing impairments can access the information without relying on audio alone
Text-to-Speech Compatibility: Make sure all content, including product descriptions, blog posts, and important announcements, can be easily accessed using screen readers or text-to-speech software.
Practice Internal Linking
Internal linking is a powerful SEO strategy that improves site navigation and search engine understanding of your website’s content structure. Link related product pages and relevant content within your site to guide shoppers to valuable information and improve overall user experience.
For example, notice how Myntra provides a “View Similar” button on all their products. This then leads the user to similar products on the same page, ensuring that the user gets a chance to look at other products. Genius!
ProTip: Don’t overstuff pages with excessive internal links or use irrelevant anchor text, which can confuse shoppers and negatively impact SEO.
Kartify: The One-stop Solution To Build A Robust E-commerce Website
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As the entire world embraces digital customer experiences, content marketing has become key to success among E-commerce brands. The content marketing market is estimated to grow 16.37% between 2022 and 2027 with the size forecasted to increase by $584.02 billion.
E-commerce brands have realized over time that content marketing is one of the quickest and most cost-effective ways to increase brand loyalty, improve digital presence, and gain an edge over competitors.
Today, we will explore some of the most effective E-commerce content marketing strategies that can help you increase conversions. But before that, let’s look at the importance and meaning of E-commerce content marketing.
What Is E-commerce Content Marketing?
In simple terms, content marketing is an inbound digital strategy that involves creating high-quality and original content that attracts potential customers. It can take various forms like social media content, product reviews, infographics, videos, podcasts, and more.
The goal of content marketing is to educate, entertain and engage customers through useful content. Rather than hard-selling the products or services, the strategy delivers content to customers with the expectation that the readers will become loyal customers.
In a world where customers are constantly exposed to various marketing strategies, content forces them to stop, think and take action. But, why is it so valuable?
Why Is E-commerce Content Marketing Important?
Irrespective of the product or service, content should be an integral part of the E-commerce marketing strategy.
Content marketing helps brands connect with customers emotionally– giving them a chance to relay their brand story along with values in an engaging yet meaningful manner. This can, ultimately, help drive sales and traffic for the brands–attracting and converting potential customers into loyal customers.
Here are some benefits of content marketing:
Drives Organic Traffic
With compelling and original content in the form of product descriptions, blogs, infographics, and more that are optimized with keywords, brands can climb higher in search engine results. It is essentially an amalgamation of distinctive content with a successful SEO strategy that provides value to customers.
Builds Brand Awareness
By constantly providing helpful information using engaging content like videos and social media posts, customers can learn about the brand, products, and services. This helps build a long-term relationship with customers and ensures that your brand stays at the top of their minds during their search for a product from your industry.
E-commerce shopping comes with a lot of doubts for customers, as there is a multitude of fake products and services. However, by delivering informative content, brands can remove these doubts from the minds of customers. Text descriptions, videos, and product images can inform them about the quality and benefits of the products/services and push the leads toward purchases.
How To Come Up With Content Ideas
So, how do brands create content that appeals to customers and increase conversion rates? Here are some ways to come up with content ideas:
Ask Your Audience
What better way to know what your customer wants than getting your customers to tell you directly? Asking the audience offers a first-hand account of their challenges, needs, aspirations, and more.
We understand that focus groups or one-on-one interviews with a large number of customers can be a time-consuming and costly process. Therefore, start with a simple survey using tools like Typeform or SurveyMonkey to create online questionnaires. Share these with your email lists.
Once you have the data, dig deeper into these answers to come up with content ideas for your blog posts, social media, or videos.
Research Your Competitors
Competitors can help you understand what is working and not working in the industry. Go through their digital media to gauge topics that are gaining the most traction and those that are being shared further.
Dive into their channels and content formats for a better understanding. However, do not just blindly copy all of it. Instead, use that information to come up with a list of curated topics that would work well for your target audience.
Dig Into Your Own Experience
A common mistake that E-commerce brands make is using content marketing to target and cater to everyone. But that is not how it works.
You need to consider the content format that your target audience prefers and the social media networks they often frequent and engage in. Use this data to create something valuable and unique exclusively for your customers.
12 E-commerce Content Marketing Strategies With Examples
Let’s dive into the E-commerce content marketing strategies that you can use for your brand.
Strategy #1: Start Blogs On Your Website
Blog posts are an effective way to share stories of your business, answer common questions of your customers, and notify them of new product launches: basically, anything that offers a deeper understanding of your brand’s DNA.
It is the best strategy to captivate and emotionally engage your audience while keeping an open and free-flowing communication channel with them. Also, blog posts can help with increasing organic traffic, and converting them without taking a hit on your marketing budget.
For example, Mcaffeine, a personal care brand, shares a wide variety of blogs to keep their customers informed, ranging from skincare tips and benefits to product information. The best part of their blogs is that they subtly explain the benefits of their product whilst educating their customers.
Source: Mcaffeine Website
Best practices to follow:
Ensure the blogs have catchy headlines to make the customers want to click and read.
Even though it is text heavy content, do not forget to add some pictures to keep the readers engrossed.
Use search-engine optimization best practices to help your blogs rank higher on search engine results pages (SERP).
Integrate blogging with other channels like email marketing and social media to reach your audience faster.
Strategy #2: Create Buying Guides For Product Features
When people switch from traditional shopping to E-commerce shopping, they are devoid of the touch and feel of the product. They are not able to ask real-time questions about the product’s features and usage. So, how do you solve this problem? Buyer guides!
Buyer guides are an incredible E-commerce content marketing strategy that aims to bridge the gap between traditional and online shopping. It educates the customers on product features, assembly, usage and other in-depth details, aiding them into the purchase funnel.
Dell India’s product pages detail the features of laptops, desktops and other accessories helping potential customers learn about the features they offer.
Source: Dell India Website
Best practices to follow:
Define and learn about your target audience to tailor your content to the shopper’s values and needs.
Find out about the customers’ pain points and questions to offer product-led solutions.
Use bulleted points, plain English, jump links, and images to make it an easy and fast read.
Optimize the product guides for search engines to get more traffic to your website.
Strategy #3: Use Tutorial Videos
In recent years, the popularity of tutorial videos has increased with customers constantly venturing to YouTube and Instagram to watch them. Capitalize on this trend by creating video content that shows customers how to use the products or how to solve problems.
This video marketing strategy works very well to educate potential buyers, retain existing customers, and build overall trust with the audience. One brand that has been successfully utilizing this strategy is Nykaa.
Nykaa has created actionable video content and helped customers see them as a trustworthy brand. The YouTube content shows makeup tutorials, hacks, and tips along with celebrity makeup tutorials. It informs as well as educates the customers on the products and their usage. Additionally, they also create videos in languages apart from English like Hindi, Marathi and more. This strategy helps them reach a wider audience, specifically people who may not have a good grasp of the English language.
Source: Nykaa YouTube Channel
Best practices to follow:
Write like you speak because the more natural your videos, the clearer the message.
Divide your script into short bite-sized paragraphs for an easier shooting process.
Structure the information logically by starting with the general information before going into specific and detailed points.
Use visual aids to accompany the speaker to leave a lasting impression on customers.
Strategy #4: Promote UGC On Your Website
Another effective E-commerce content marketing strategy is User-Generated Content, which demonstrates real people using your products. People might not always believe your claims about the product. But they are more likely to believe if real customers are saying the same thing.
The strategy helps build greater trust in your brand and product and simultaneously serves as a word-of-mouth marketing technique.
A good example of a brand using a strong and interactive UGC strategy is Mamaearth, an Indian E-commerce brand. During Mother’s Day, it ran a contest for all new mothers, asking them to post a picture with their babies. The two winners would get a chance for a photo shoot with their little ones.
The brand used the emotional moment between the mothers’ and their babies to build a connection with their target audience.
Source: Mamaearth Instagram Page
Best practices to follow:
Create and promote social media contests that get customers to submit videos, photos, etc.
Encourage customers to leave reviews on your E-commerce websites and marketplaces like Flipkart and Google.
Generate a unique hashtag around a specific product or brand. Urge customers to use it in their posts.
Regularly post UGC content on your social media pages
Strategy #5: Podcast Is The New Hype
The podcast has gained momentum, especially among the younger crowd, in the past few years. People listen to podcasts during their commute or while doing household chores. So, why not tap into this market?
Podcasts are a low-cost and high-rewarding content marketing strategy that works best if it aligns with your target audience’s interests. They help maximize reach and establish brand authority.
boAt is a great example of using podcasts as a content marketing strategy. Titled “Do What Floats Your boAt”, Danish Sait, an Indian comedian, speaks to inspiring creators who have pursued their dreams, irrespective of judgment, money, or rules. The podcast has been successfully informing and motivating its target audience by sharing these stories.
Source: boAt Website
Best practices to follow:
Use lots of stories to connect and empathize with your target audience.
Ask the audience questions and respond to them during the podcast.
Choose guests who have great stories to tell but are less known to add uniqueness to the podcast.
Be your authentic self to create a truly engaging podcast.
Strategy #6: Create Informative Content To Answer Customer Queries Such As FAQ And Sizing Chart
Size charts and FAQ pages might not be the most glamorous E-commerce content marketing strategy, but they are useful in building trust with customers. Potential and existing customers will inevitably have questions about the products. And these can help answer the queries.
Size charts are not just for clothes and shoes related brands. It is also vital for brands selling furniture, tools, electronics, or other bulky products. Look at your product line and determine if the customers will have questions about the size. If yes, then you need a size chart.
A good example of a brand’s size chart is Myntra. It gives customers the option of seeing the size in both inches and centimeters. Additionally, they also have a section that tells customers how to measure their size, making it easier for each of them to check and walk through the purchase funnel.
Source: Myntra Website
The FAQ page answers the common questions that customers might have regarding shipping, returns, etc.
Best practices to follow:
Answer all product-specific questions on the product page. Use the FAQ page for more general questions.
Use the customer’s point of view to create these pages.
Make these pages easy to find and read, to avoid confusion among them.
Strategy #7: Use Interactive Quizzes And Tools
Another great medium of E-commerce content marketing is interactive quizzes and tools. It can help brands understand their audience better, as the data obtained from this method offers insight into the buyer persona.
Apart from that, interactive activity also improves the brand’s personality and authority in the long term. It increases the chance of content going viral through shares, comments, likes, and more, which generates greater SEO traffic to the website.
A brand that has actively been using quizzes and tools is Sugar Cosmetics, a skincare and makeup brand from India. It shares interactive quizzes like choose, build, pick something and we will reveal something else. The strategy has helped the brand captivate the audience, whilst driving traffic to their website.
Source: Sugar Cosmetics Website
Best practices to follow:
The questions should be relevant to the topic you are discussing.
Ensure the questions are thought-provoking to keep the customers engaged.
Keep the questions simple that are fairly easy to understand.
Incorporate humor in your quizzes to make the experience more enjoyable.
H3: Strategy 8: Create Content For Social Media Marketing
Social media is an essential strategy for connecting and building relations with today’s audience. Sharing content on these platforms helps communicate with the audience, engage with them, generate new leads, and convert leads into sales.
Social media can serve as a diverse content platform, as you share pictures of new products, videos of the manufacturing process, links to blogs and press releases, and memes. Add captions to your content to communicate deeper information about your product or brand. The higher the engagement on these platforms, the greater will be your results. Therefore, listen to your customers carefully and give them what they want.
Zomato is a great example of social media marketing. The brand has used Instagram to share a wide variety of content. From using meme marketing to reels and engagement posts, it has nailed social media marketing as seen by thousands of likes and comments on the posts.
Source: Zomato Instagram Page
Best practices to follow:
Find a platform used by your target audience and make that your top content page.
Ensure a good mix of images, storytelling, and video content to connect with the audience.
Partner with micro or big influencers to increase your reach.
Product descriptions contain features and characteristics that help customers make informed purchase decisions. They provide all the information a customer might have regarding the product, which ensures that the product serves their needs. It can include size, weight, measurements, usage, precautions, and more.
Conduct keyword research around your industry and use them in your product descriptions for SEO-optimized content. It will help your products rank higher on search engines, which will direct customers straight to your website.
HomeTown, an E-commerce furniture seller, provides a detailed description of all their products, including materials, size, storage, brand, and more. This has helped build trust in the brand, helping customers get rid of any doubts regarding online purchases.
Source: HomeTown Website
Best practices to follow:
Create a detailed product description that answers the customers’ queries and help them make an informed decision.
Use clear and simple language without overcomplicating information.
Ensure all your content is 100% unique, as Google does not like duplicate content.
Make sure your product description is optimized for SEO.
Strategy #10: Use Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is a process with which an affiliate can earn a commission by promoting other companies products or service. The strategy helps drive traffic to the brand’s website, and the affiliates are paid a share of the sales generated from it.
The strategy lends authenticity and credibility to the brand due to collaboration with trusted sources. You can create an affiliate program, join an affiliate network or use SaaS solutions that help affiliate programs succeed.
Flipkart runs an affiliate program for its website. People who own their websites can sign up for programs and promote the products using different forms like blogs, comparisons, product reviews, and more.
Source: Flipkart Website
Best practices to follow:
Select products that are easy for affiliates to market and are in trend among the customers.
Expect to pay 1% to 30% to affiliates as commissions.
Draft an affiliate policy and performance requirements for easy understanding of affiliates.
Check your competitors’ affiliate programs to see what works and does not in your industry.
Strategy #11: Create A Glossary Page For Website Traffic
Do your products contain terms that might be unfamiliar? Create a glossary page of terms, jargon, and acronyms that are exclusive to your industry or niche.
The glossary page serves as a central location for customers to understand the product and the language associated with it. It is also an effective SEO strategy that will help attract visitors who search for a specific term. They are likely to explore your product or website further after clicking on the link.
Best practices to follow:
Use plain simple language to make the meaning crystal clear to customers.
Avoid using the defined word in the description.
Provide pronunciation tips for an extra benefit.
Include synonyms, examples, and antonyms for a better understanding of the term.
Strategy #12: Leverage Email Marketing
Email marketing is a powerful E-commerce content marketing strategy.
Email marketing is a tried and tested method that helps build relationships with leads, current customers, and past customers. It provides an opportunity to speak directly to the customers from their inbox, making it an impact content marketing strategy.
Some of the kinds of emails that can be sent include new product launches, holiday discount offers, seasonal promotions, deals, case studies, and more. You can also automate a few emails like welcome, promotional, and event emails. Additionally, also consider sending cart abandonment emails to customers who have abandoned their carts without making the purchase.
Faballey, an Indian clothing brand, sends out emails related to products, promotional, new launches and more. In the below example, they have used a catchy subject line along with an image, attractive copy and a button, which makes customers want to click the link provided.
Best practices to follow:
Use catchy headlines that make customers want to open the email.
Focus less on sales and more on educating and information.
Evoke a sense of urgency and FOMO by using timers or copies like “hurry now”, “limited stock,” and more.
Add a CTA and a button that invites people to follow the link.
Content Promotion And Distribution
Once you have curated your content, you must be wondering how to share it with your customers. Here are two ways to promote and distribute your content.
1. How To Share Your Content On Social Media
Social media is a great platform to distribute and promote your content. However, you need to find out which platform your audience prefers and target those.
Instagram – Brands that have lots of product images and videos to share should use Instagram, as it is a visual platform.
Pinterest – This is another visual platform that allows users to save product images to their boards. It will help create referral traffic to your website.
Facebook – An inclusive platform for almost everything like product images, videos, and blog posts, which increases visibility and traffic.
Twitter – Twitter is a quick and easy alternative to email marketing, as you can share your blog posts with a short description of it.
YouTube – Sharing long and short videos about brands and products on this platform is a great way to engage, educate and entertain your audience.
2. How To Create Co-Branded Giveaways
Co-branded giveaway is a strategy where two or more non-competing brands can combine their E-commerce content marketing strategies to reach more audiences. It is a unique and fun way to engage your audience by making them a part of the experience.
Many platforms like Easypromos help brands connect with other brands to create a co-branded giveaway. These tools help set up a landing page easily, which can be shared with the audience.
Customers participating in the giveaways also sign up to receive marketing emails and messages, which helps brands generate 20,000 to 50,000 new leads. You can use these leads to remarket your products.
In conclusion, E-commerce content marketing is an effective strategy that helps brands build trust and authority, increase awareness, enhance organic traffic, and boost sales. We recommend using a wide variety of strategies that appeal to your target audience.
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