Digital Marketing for E-commerce (online retail)

If you are an online retailer and expansion is one of your future goals this article is perfect for you. When it comes to digital marketing, details are important. Keep reading and you will find out how we at 3B prioritise and use digital tools to drive e-commerce conversion growth and improve digital presence.

Paid Online Advertising

Don’t be scared by the word ‘advertising’, we know it makes you feel like spending a lot of money. A carefully designed advertising strategy will target a large audience and allow you to spend less. There are various platforms to choose from, e.g Google Ads, Facebook, and Instagram Ads. The option which suits you best will depend on your budget and target audience.

Google Ads is the most expensive option among those listed above, but it will bring you many benefits. Some key benefits of using Google Ads as a part of your marketing strategy are:

  • Get your content to the top of Google search results. Before getting to the first and the most important benefit of Google advertising you’ll need a short introduction to search engine optimisation (a.k.a. SEO). You probably already know what it is and what benefits it brings to your website. However, if you’d like to find out more, read our article about search engine optimisation. In short, search engines rank your website for different searches, and your SEO can help your website appear higher in search results, resulting in more visitors to your website.

    Statistically, most internet users do not go further than the first page of search results. Google Ads skips the SEO step, and allows you to forget about your search engine ranking for now. Google Ads get your website above other results which increases brand awareness and visibility instantly.

    Don’t forget about SEO, but remember that a cost-effective Google Ads campaign that would bring traffic to your website is a worthwhile investment. Once you find profitable searches to advertise on, you can ramp up your campaign and reap the rewards.

    Contact our team of marketing professionals and we will help you to to analyse your Google Ads results by keyword and determine which ad campaigns are best for you (i.e. Google Adwords, Google Display Ads, and/or Google Shopping). We aim to save you from spending money on advertising that does not bring any benefits to you!

  • Advert Analytics. After setting up Google Ads account you will also get access to ad analytics. Detailed reports give you the metrics you need to determine how relevant your ad was to the visitor, and what you could perhaps do to better convert them.

Facebook and Instagram Ads are a cheaper option and would be of more use if you’re targeting millennials. Statistically, they are the main segment on social media (read this article about Facebook Ads to find out more). It is important to design adverts which catch the attention of a younger audience segment and encourage them to browse and eventually purchase the product or service you offer.

It all might sound very simple, but getting your ads right is important. Properly designed ads will be hugely scalable and will bring you a greater audience.

Instagram and Facebook shopping

This feature is very useful when targeting a young audience who love to browse product or affinity images. Using Instagram and Facebook shopping your audience can instantly purchase products through the images, minimising clicks and reducing the chance of your potential customers being distracted.

Instagram and Facebook shopping is fully customisable. Choose the format of the ad (photo/video) and product sticker colour. Similarly to Facebook and Instagram ads, your shopping ads will be shown to the users who are the most likely to be interested in your products. Contact us if you’d like to find out more about how you can leverage the Facebook algorithm to sell more online!

Video Content

Dynamic content tends to get more attention from a younger audience. Include different types of video content to help you improve user engagement across your social media platforms. Some good examples are:

  • Tell people about your brand, a large part of your customers would be interested to know more about your company if they like your products/services. This helps to build a relationship with your customers and potential customers, making their shopping experience more personal.

  • Tutorials on how to use certain products. Even if it’s obvious people do like to watch videos of other people using products they are about to buy.

Search Engine Optimisation

One approach to SEO is to optimise your pages for relevant, high-volume keywords to improve your visibility on a vast scale. It’s very important not to miss any important bits in the process, as it all adds up to how well your pages will rank in Google search. Ranking on the first page for ‘beauty products’ will be more difficult than ranking on the first page for ‘argan oil facial cleanser’ however.

So, regardless of your high-volume aims, your whole site should be optimised for how people search i.e. URLs, titles, headers, tags, page descriptions, text content and image filenames should all include relevant search terms in them.

By having a high-volume goal, while optimising your pages for niche keywords, you will be able to build credibility in an industry, and begin to write articles for high volume searches.

Core to this is producing useful and high quality content to bring people to your website. Your visitors will then be more likely to browse through products related to your content.

If that’s something you’d like to do but you feel like you don’t have time for it, give us a call. We have a lot of clients who trust us to write optimised, knowledgeable content for them while they are busy running their business. It’s a win-win. We get to know our client’s industry better every month, and they get busier!

Use of social media

The use of social media is not necessarily advertising. There are many ways to use social media for free to promote your business.


  • Produce consistent stories to keep people engaged with your brand. Could be anything, from behind the production shots to Yes/No polls. The goal is to get instant audience insight and engagement. Would be especially useful if you want to find out people’s opinions on your new product ideas.

  • Keep your Instagram design consistent. If your Instagram layout is not visually appealing, it is very unlikely that users will follow your page.

  • Create consistent, informative, and well-designed content. Don’t forget that it should be designed for your audience. Don’t post about science if you are selling unicorn themed iPhone cases, for example.

Reach out to Influencers

This point is very important to you if you are targeting millennials. A survey conducted in 2015 summarised that 66% of people trust other people’s opinions posted online.

Young consumers are therefore more likely to purchase a product if it has been advertised by their favourite blogger, compared to a product being advertised in any other way.

The key here would be to find relevant people to advertise your product. This type of digital marketing does not bring huge costs with it. Many bloggers will be happy to be approached by you, and once you have established a working relationship, they will work to their strengths to promote your products and services.

The tricky bit here is to find niche people, but once you got it, it will pay off soon enough. Contact us if you’d like advice on this.

Email Marketing

There are many benefits of email marketing, and the best thing about it is that it won’t cost you a penny. If your email marketing campaign turns out to be unsuccessful there should be little to no damage to your finances, what you will lose is time.

Contact us for a professionally designed email marketing campaign to experience all its perks. But first, let’s explore the most common benefits of email marketing together:

  • Email marketing allows you to instantly reach a global audience. Within seconds your campaign can be sent all over the World. You can see representative results within the first 24 hours, depending on how big your mailing list is. Most tools provide conversion and click-through rates.

Correctly designed email marketing campaigns will help your business to increase sales and build relationships with your loyal customers. It is also important to keep your list of contacts growing. There is no point in spending time designing a beautiful marketing campaign if you only have a dwindling few people reading your emails. To keep your list growing, make sure you encourage newsletter sign ups on your website. We can also advise on other methods.

Website quality

Every business should have a high-quality website, but this is particularly important if you’re selling products online. At the end of the day, the goal of your site is to convince people to purchase your products and then come back to purchase more. You probably realise that user experience is very important in this case.

Read through our basic recommendations for online sales (a.k.a. e-commerce) websites below - and consider making changes to your site as soon as possible, to see positive results.

Add reviews to your site

Never underestimate the power of reviews. Forbes concluded that 90% of people read reviews online prior to making any purchases, and 68% of purchasing decisions were influenced by reviews in 2016.

There are plenty of review platforms that can be implemented to your site, contact us to get a technical advice and discuss an option that would fit you best.

Bear in mind, if you don’t have reviews on your site (where you can control them to some extent), then people will search for them off-site, leaving you with less control.

Website design and Conversion Optimisation

Tell your business story and deliver your branding effectively:

  • Make sure the styling across the whole site is consistent

  • Avoid using Arial (the font), otherwise, you risk your site looking bland and robotic

  • Avoid using capital letters across the site, it makes people feel like you’re SHOUTING

  • Produce blog posts for related topics

  • Analyse a pathway a site user takes to purchase any of your products. Avoid it being too long. Minimising unnecessary clicks will give you more chance that a site user will convert into a customer.

  • Pay people to buy products from you, and watch how they navigate your website. Few activities are so insightful!

Your aim should be to connect with your website visitors on an emotional level and make foundations for building trustworthy relationships.

E-commerce tracking

Make sure you’re using all tools available to maximise the effectiveness of your marketing strategy. Implementing e-commerce tracking to your site is very easy. The simplest way to begin is to add tracking code to your site to start receiving data in Google Analytics. From there you can set up goals and conversion paths.

The reports available to you will display valuable data on conversion rates, number of transactions, revenue, number of products sold, etc.

Using all the available data will allow you to see which products and pages perform best. Knowing that, you’ll then be able to modify your marketing strategy to increase conversion rates.

Website structure

  • Categorise products you’re selling to improve the user experience. Similar products should be grouped into categories to make it easy to navigate through suggestions

  • Use breadcrumb links for navigational purposes. Clicking different elements on the site might confuse users and make it difficult to find products they were originally looking for. Using breadcrumb links will show your users the digital path they followed to get to a particular product.

Contact our team if you’d like to know how we can help your website to get more visitors and maximise conversions. We tailor our strategies to each client individually, adopting them to various budgets and needs.

Our aim is to up your sales, while maintaining a consistent profit margin across all applicable channels.