Shopping Around – Part 2: Shopify Digital Marketing

The Wonderful World of eCommerce Digital Marketing

Now that you’ve gone through the construction and interior design phases in part one of “Shopping Around,” it’s time to move on to promotion and marketing – after all what good is a website if people aren’t getting to it, right? In the digital realm we replace billboards with Adwords, word-of-mouth with social traffic, and a quick Yellow Pages browsing with organic search. All three avenues bring customers to your virtual front door and all three are vital to ecommerce success.

Building a Brand: How to Craft Your Lifestyle Identity Building a Brand on Shopify

We have seen one consistent characteristic among the most successful Shopify sites: the ability to create a “lifestyle identity” or a subconscious feeling customers associate with their brand. What are you about? What do you want people to think you’re about? Cultivate a persona that buyers can latch on to. Sure, your color palette matters, but the overall experience must be a journey for the visitor – albeit a quick one.

Start by laying out three adjectives you want people to associate with your brand. Then create your ideal target market consisting of age, geo-location, hobbies, job and gender. Use your description list and target audience list to make a cocktail of branding perfection. Build this blend into every facet of not only your site, but also your name, logo, photography, packaging, social media sites and collateral. This is your Branding Bible from here on out.

The About page is quite possibly the most important facet of your site when it comes to setting yourself apart from any other brand out there. We mentioned this earlier but it is worth stressing again: spend the extra time telling the user “Why you?” Walk them through your story, values and morals. Wear your philanthropic efforts on one sleeve and your passions on the other.

Stock Images vs. In-Stock Images: The Importance of Solid Product Photography

Bad photos are bad for business especially when your photography is the closest thing a customer can get to feeling your product. Your brand and its perceived value is directly impacted by the pictures you publish, so when it comes to your images be a perfectionist.

If you have to use stock images only do so as very temporary placeholders. People want real products. They want authentic photos. And trust us, we know that professional photography can get quite expensive. However, there are a variety of Do It Yourself options out there to help you save on costs! The best part? Even if you don’t have a super fancy DSLR camera you can make-do with an iPhone 6 or newer.

Top Shopify Product Photo InsightsPhotography Tips for Shopify Products
  • Use soft, even lighting – natural light only if possible
  • Take at least one straight-on angle shot
  • Shoot at a high aperture with more light (8.0-11.00)
  • Image sizes should be about 1,600 x 1,600 pixels
  • Use a consistent aspect ratio for each photo set
  • Have equal white space on all sides
  • Make sure no direct sunlight is on the product
  • Label/branding should be centered
  • Get a Foldio 2 by OrangeMonkie portable studio for a quick and painless photo solution (it’s only $75)
Most Common Photo MistakesBad Product Photography
  • Forgetting to clean products before the shoot
  • Shooting at inconsistent angles, variations and settings
  • Distracting from the product with busy backgrounds (save the “Lifestyle” pictures for the homepage/hero image position)
  • Lacking a primary focus resulting in a loss of sharpness and trustworthiness
  • Lacking a solid white balance (remember “The Dress”)
  • Being lazy with the photo setting by using the “Auto” function

Natural Exposure: How to Add SEO to your Store, Products & Collections

Organic Search is your best friend when it comes to eCommerce digital marketing. It doesn’t ask you for money, it introduces you to new audiences, and as long as you’re a good friend to it the traffic will keep on coming. One of the reasons ForeFront Web endorses Shopify so strongly is because of its SEO capabilities and ease of implementation. You can cover all the basics (meta titles, meta descriptions, image titles, image alt. text, headers, content writing, etc.) within the confines of the CMS without ever having to tamper with code. To compete with the heavy hitters (think Amazon, Nike, Wal-Mart) you must cover all of your bases. You can’t leave a single stone unturned or else you’ll get pushed further from the front of the line.

Additional Shopify SEO Tips & NotesShopify SEO Tips
  • Make sure key marketing pages (Home, About, Collections) have at least 350 words of unique content on each.
  • Compile an email list and send out newsletters that contain 80% consumer value, 20% self-promotion. (Mailing lists and drip campaigns is a subject for another time!)
  • Consistently release guides, blog posts, videos and e-books to inform customers and search engines alike that you are the industry leader – the more content, the better.
  • Cut down on third party applications to keep loading speeds lower and ranks higher.
  • For every 100 words of text implement 1-2 keywords/phrases.
  • Ensure that each individual product and collection has its own unique content and description – don’t be lazy with your content.

Cost of Doing Business: Leverage Paid Marketing to Reach Target AudiencesAdwords & Social Media Ads for Shopify

If Organic Search is your best friend then Paid Marketing is that dude you know that can get jobs done – for a price. He comes at a cost, but dang it he’s effective. Don’t be afraid to spend money on paid-for advertising experimentation especially because of how difficult garnering organic reach and social media buzz can be in the beginning. For eCommerce your top two mediums will consist of Facebook Advertising, Google Adwords (PPC) and Dynamic Product Ads. Facebook allows you to carve out audiences that fit your perfect buyer persona. Adwords allows you to compete in the advertising spaces of organic search for hyper-relevant key terms. Dynamic Products Ads (or retargeting ads) simply sends advertisements to a user once they’ve closed out of your site reminding them of what they’re missing out on.

A rule of thumb for all digital advertising mediums: 1.5-3% click-thru rate (or a 1.5-3% conversion rate) is an absolute necessity. If you’re not at this level after the first 100 impressions/clicks amend your current campaign and republish.

Additional Paid Marketing Notes
  • Leverage Facebook’s “Lookalike Audiences” after you get some social media conversions.
  • When available use the Carousel Advertising feature on Facebook and Instagram.
  • If your product is a subscription base let the “Max Lifetime Value” of each conversion dictate your digital ad spend – they may spend $10 a month, but they may stay on for two years.
  • Utilize Kit, Shopify’s virtual employee for automatic marketing messages and replies.

For more information regarding Shopify marketing & creating a solid brand that your customers will never forget, get in touch with us today!

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