With the continued growth of fashion ecommerce, digital marketing is becoming more and more important. Unfortunately, too many fashion brands are neglecting the ecommerce marketing that could be winning them far more business and keeping their existing client base coming back time after time.
Well, I should say unfortunately for them. After all, you’re here learning how to make your business stand out amongst the droves of lookalikes and copycats.
Ready to take your sales to the next level? Take a look at our list of fashion marketing faux pas and prepare to build yourself a powerful ecommerce strategy.
The 7 deadly ecommerce marketing sins for fashion brands:
1. Not Tracking
Do you know where your customers are coming from? How about your peak sales hours? If you don’t know, you need to. Elements such as these allow you to refine your marketing strategy to increase your ROI and make the most of your marketing budget.
How is this possible, you ask? Welcome to ecommerce tracking via Google Analytics. With this awesome tool you’ll be able to track:
- Transaction times
- Total revenue
- Total transactions
- Revenue of individual products
- # of specific products sold
- Total number of products sold in a particular date range
- # of unique purchases made
- Date-wise revenue generation
You may have a product or an entire page that isn’t selling well. Tracking can help you determine why. It can also help you see when people are buying and when they aren’t so you can focus your marketing efforts on peak times and make the most of every ecommerce marketing dollar.
Tracking is a must for your fashion brand, plain and simple. So make sure you head over and get yourself set up with an Analytics account.
After that, Google makes getting started with tracking straightforward and simple.
2. Ignoring the Buyer’s Journey
If you’re unfamiliar with the buyer’s journey, I’ll make this easy on you. My second deadly sin of fashion ecommerce marketing is only focusing on the end result, the sale. Holding the buyer above the browser. Get it?
Why get all worked up about someone who doesn’t end up buying? Because there are sales to be made by nurturing potential customers that have shown interest in your store but aren’t yet ready to buy.
Not everyone comes to your site ready to buy. That doesn’t mean that they won’t buy in the future. It also doesn’t mean that they should be ignored until they do.
What it does mean is that you should be treating every visitor like they’re valuable, no matter what stage of the buyer’s journey they are presently in. You’ve worked hard to get them to your site, so take advantage of the fact that they’ve expressed an interest in what you have to offer.
Stay in contact with your site visitors. If you’re not already, you should be collecting their email addresses. Give them something (maybe a free style guide, a coupon, or this season’s lookbook) in exchange for their valuable contact information.
Once you have it, you can reach out to them with special offers or discounts or a preview of your newest products. You’ll showcase your amazing store and (over time) influence them to buy.
3. Not A/B Testing
A/B testing, while it may sound boring, is actually one of the most enlightening parts of ecommerce marketing. Who knows, you may just end up loving it.
A/B testing is the side-by-side comparison of small (and sometimes big) changes you make to the way your customers interact with your brand.
For instance, when a potential customer clicks on one of your ads they’re directed to a landing page. Try creating two different versions of that landing page and measure the response (tracking) you get from each. One may have people signing up for your email list (via special offer) and clicking through to do some shopping. The other may be a little too aggressive and drive them away.
Not all testing will provide such a dramatically different result, but you get the picture. Testing is the way you hone your fashion ecommerce marketing strategy. There is no “good enough.” You should always be testing to achieve the best results possible.
Try different layouts on your product pages to determine how people interact with them. You can enhance your testing with tools from crazyegg to generate a heatmap (where people hover when scrolling across your site) and click tracking (where they actually click on a given page).
4. Not Optimizing
When something doesn’t work, change it. It’s foolish to expect different results without change. You need to be able to pivot freely and change your strategy based on your performance.
We already covered how important it is to track, but what good is it if you don’t do anything with the results?
Say you discover a product page that your customers are interacting poorly with. This indicates it is time for a change. Take a look at what makes your best-performing product pages so successful. Relay those commonalities to your worst performers to bring them back into balance.
The same can (and should) be done for every aspect of your customer interaction process. From your advertising to your checkout procedure, always be optimizing. You know your competition will be!
5. Not Blogging
To blog or not to blog? There is NO question.
A blog can be used as a very powerful marketing tool. Creating content that your customers find valuable can drive huge traffic to your site.
Create engaging content that is relevant to the fashion niche you represent. You’ll improve your search engine rankings so your customers will be able to find you organically (more on that in a minute).
Then you can share that content on your Facebook to engage new prospects and past customers. Pay to promote that content and (with a little ad targeting) it will find its way to the feeds of your ideal buyers.
People don’t want to be sold. In fact, people have all but given up trusting brands that use hard sales techniques to do their business. That’s the beauty of content marketing, as it’s called.
With this form of content marketing, you put your brand in front of potential customers by sharing content that they find interesting and valuable. They don’t feel the push of the hard sell or get hit with a bunch of salesy ad copy. Instead, they appreciate the information you’ve provided. That appreciation translates to trust, which is worth its weight in gold in today’s marketing world. People buy from brands they trust.
6. Ignoring SEO
Number 6 on the list is a big one. The entirety of your ecommerce business is conducted online, correct? The only way people find your business is through a paid ad or a search engine (the S & E of SEO). So why would you neglect such a massive resource?
Sure, ads may be driving you “enough” business, but you’re missing out on a huge piece of the ecommerce marketing puzzle. More importantly, you’re missing out on a huge piece of the ecommerce market. SEO isn’t dead.
There is an overarching theme to this post and if you haven’t discovered it by now, I’ll make it very clear…
It is no longer good enough to be good enough.
What I mean is that you can’t expect what is working “O.K.” for you now to always do so. Your competitors will be doing it better.
If you really want to grow your business, relying entirely on paid advertising doesn’t make sense. If you’re looking for long-term marketing benefits, relying entirely on paid ads doesn’t make sense. If you want to stand out from the crowd and thrive in an increasingly competitive market, relying entirely on paid ads doesn’t make sense.
Search engine optimization provides long-term results at a fraction of the cost and has the potential to provide huge volumes of traffic.
7. Not Creating a Community
Community is everything today. The success of social media is largely based on the community it provides its users.
Provide your users with a sense of community in any way possible. Give them a reason to hang out on your blog, Facebook, or Instagram. Show off your new products and actively seek feedback. Run contests that gather your followers around a similar interest.
Develop a community around your brand and your ideal buyers will find themselves there to do more than just shop. Don’t get me wrong, shop they will, but you’ll be fostering a relationship with your customers that most fashion ecommerce businesses overlook.
The loyalty of your community will translate directly to your success.
Now that you’re ready to take on a powerful new ecommerce marketing strategy, don’t forget what you’ve learned here today. Always be improving. There is always room to do better. Your success has a directly relation to your brand’s adaptability to change.
I’d love to hear about your experience implementing your new strategy in the comments below.
Be sure to let me know if you think I’ve missed something too.