Statistics confirm that there are almost 24 million eCommerce sites worldwide. So, if you own an eCommerce startup, it’s normal to feel intimidated by the overwhelming number of competitors in your niche. But remember that a crowded field is also an indication of existing demand, which makes eCommerce a lucrative segment to be in. Aaron Rodriguez, an online business optimization expert, explains what needs to be done to make an eCommerce startup stand out.
The good news is that you don’t have to beat eCommerce giants like Amazon, eBay or Walmart to taste business success. Finding a gap in the market and carving your niche according to the target audience can help you scale your online store and make you stand out among other online merchants. “First of all, let your content do the talking. Great content generates interest and adds value to the target audience, which encourages conversions. An interesting infographic from Demand Metric reveals that 80% of people appreciate learning about a business through site content,” notes Rodriguez. “High-quality, engaging, and relevant content can persuade your site visitors to take action on your behalf. Here’s how you can wow your audience with an effective content strategy.”
Offering instructional content is a great way to engage your audience and satisfy their thirst for knowledge. eCommerce marketers use a variety of digital marketing strategies to drive traffic. But very few companies focus on offering instructional content. Offering instructional content will not only improve traffic to your site, but it will also drive your visitors down the marketing funnel, taking customer engagement to the next level. “Start by doing effective content research in your niche. Use content creation tools like BuzzSumo, Ubersuggest and Google Alerts to develop content that sets you apart from your competition. Awesome instructional content should not only educate the audience but also present the facts in an entertaining way. Today’s digital audience loves to interact with videos and visuals. Keep this in mind when creating instructional content for your brand,” Rodriguez asserts.
User-generated content can help you generate high-quality, authentic, and unique content for your brand, allowing you to outshine the competition. Approximately 79% of customers share that UGC has a significant impact on their purchasing decisions. UGC is more significant than any of the brand narratives you share on social media. Start by hosting UGC contests, engaging in social listening, and generating share-worthy content. In addition, people often use social media to share their passion, interests, and accomplishments with others. Use social media tools like Facebook Audience Insights to get clues about user activity with respect to their demographics, page likes, location, and purchase activity.
Make the entire customer experience a top priority. Customer experience is not simply about the sales journey. Every step in the sales cycle and beyond offers an opportunity to make customers feel special, allowing you to differentiate yourself from the competition.
For example, a captivating loyalty program can go a long way toward enhancing the customer experience. Offering exclusive discounts for loyal customers or those who have purchased for a minimum amount can make customers feel special, setting you apart from stores that do not offer such privileges.
Build customer trust. Earning the trust of your customers is one of the most effective ways to differentiate yourself from the competition and scale your business. But gaining customer trust can be difficult, especially when you’re a new entrant in the market. Consider these tips for building a trusted online brand. Collaborate with other brands and influencers.
Partnering with other brands (small or large) and influencers in your niche can add a degree of credibility to your startup and enhance your online reputation. Communicate with influencers, micro-influencers, bloggers, and reporters in your domain to provide an authentic voice for your brand and build trust.
And lastly, offer flexible shipping options. The additional cost of shipping products is enough to deter customers from completing the checkout process. According to the Baymard Institute, the additional cost of shipping and taxes is the number one reason why shoppers abandon shopping carts.
“Competition in the eCommerce space is fierce and relentless. With millions of companies plaguing the eCommerce segment, it can be difficult for startups to differentiate their brand from the competition,” says Rodriguez.