Tag Archives: digital marketing strategy

Pay-Per-Click Advertising – The Landing Page

The landing page is the place where a customer ends up when clicking on a retailer’s pay-per-click ad. It is here where the customer will decide to engage further or to leave the site.

The landing page is so important that Google’s AdWords ranks each advertisers’ landing page. The ranking affects your Ad Rank and therefore your cost-per-click and position in the ad auction.

Starting your landing page

Your customers should have a great experience when arriving at you landing page. Google advise the following:

  1. Offer relevant, useful and original content.
    1. Make sure your landing-page is directly relevant to your ad text and keyword.
    2. Provide useful information on your landing page about whatever you’re advertising.
    3. Try to offer useful features or content that are unique to your site.
  2. Promote transparency and foster trustworthiness on your site.
    1. Openly share information about your business and clearly state what your business does.
    2. Explain your products or services before asking visitors to fill out forms.
    3. Make it easy for visitors to find your contact information.
    4. If you request personal information from customers, make it clear why you’re asking for it and what you’ll do with it.
    5. Distinguish sponsored links, like ads, from the rest of your website’s content.
  3. Make mobile and computer navigation easy
    1. Organize and design your page well, so people don’t have to hunt around for information.
    2. Make it quick and easy for people to order the product mentioned in your ad.
    3. Don’t annoy customers with pop-ups or other features that interfere with their navigation of your site.
    4. Help customers quickly find what they’re looking for by prioritizing the content that’s visible above-the-fold.
  4. Be fast—decrease your landing page loading time
    1. Make sure your landing-page loads quickly once someone clicks on your ad, whether on a computer or mobile device.
    2. Learn how you or your webmaster can use PageSpeed Insights to measure the performance of your landing page.
  5. Make your site (even more) mobile-friendly
    1. See how your site scores on mobile-friendliness and speed, and find out how to improve it.

Getting your landing page wrong can cost you lots of money. Visit eBizplan for help with your digital marketing strategy.

Picture: videezy.com

Creating ADs for Pay-Per-Click Campaigns

To design and create ads for your pay-per-click marketing campaign remain a challenge. Retailers only have a small space to fit in a meaningful message that will appear on the result page.

Many retailers are selling similar products online. You need to create an ad that is different and catches the attention of online visitors. It may be helpful to search your products on the internet to see how your competitor’s pay-per-click ad looks.

Analyse your competitors

Retailers need to know how their competitors position their products. Start analysing by listing the advantages your competitors claim. Examples of advantages that your competitors may have are:

  • Lower prices;
  • Higher quality;
  • Free delivery;
  • A large selection;
  • A workable return policy.

How do your business compare?

Analyse your own product offering

Compare the positioning of your products with that of your competitors to see where you have an advantage. You may also revisit the feedback from your customers to get an idea what they think about your products and service.

Retailers should identify what their customers want from their products. What are the benefits that your products offer to their users? Once you have identified the benefits, you can create your ad.

Creating the ADs

Retailers should create a sense that visitors will suffer, or fail to benefit, if they don’t act right away. The only objective of the ad is to get visitors to click on it.

Try to speak directly to the visitor by using words like ‘you’ and ‘your’. People usually respond better to ads when they are personalised. Tell people exactly what they should do when they read your ad by using words such as ‘get’, ‘see’, ‘find’, ‘buy’, etc. Make sure that the people know exactly what you are selling…

I will discuss the ‘landing page’ – the page where the visitor arrive when clicking on your ad – in a future blog.

Visit eBizplan if you want help with your digital marketing campaign.

Note

Szetela, D. and Kerschbaum, J. 2010. Pay-per-click search engine marketing: An hour a day. John Wiley & Sons.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising – Getting the Keywords Right

Choosing the wrong keywords for your pay-per-click advertising marketing campaign will show little results and may cost retailers a lot of money. Keyword research is one of the most important tasks to do when retailers prepare for their pay-per-click campaigns on Google’s AdWords.

The way to be successful with pay-per-click has previously been discussed by this author: http://bricks2clicks.co.za/successful-pay-per-click-advertising/. Keywords will now be discussed in more detail.

How to find the right keyword(s)

Retailers need to understand their online customers and should try to get into their minds to find out what words they will type into the search engine box to find your brands or products. Another method to use is Google’s Adwords Keyword Tool.

Retailers may consider to choose negative keywords when using AdWords. They are the words you do not want your ads appearing for. Just about any ad that retailers are preparing for would benefit from negative keywords identification.

What have keywords to do with pay-per-click advertising?

Keywords are the bait that retailers use to lure prospective customers to their websites. Customers, on the other hand, use keywords to describe what they hope to find when performing an online search. Many retailers use Google AdWords, an advertising service by Google, to display their ads on Google and its advertising network.

AdWords works on a pay-per-click basis where the retailer bids on certain keywords or phrases. The retailer starts by choosing one or more keywords, a certain advertisement, and a bid value for the keyword(s) (i.e., maximum willingness to pay for a click) while competing against other advertisers.

When a customer enters a keyword in a search box, a keyword auction begins.

How much should retailers pay for keyword(s)?

Many retailers think that if they bid the highest on a certain keyword, they will get the best results. Although these retailer’s ads will be at the top of the first result page, their budgets will quickly run dry because of the high cost –per-click.

If retailers choose to bid lower for a specific keyword, their ads may appear lower on the result pages, but they show for a longer time.

Visit eBizplan for your digital marketing queries.

How to be Successful with Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Do you pay for the clicks of your AdWords campaign without getting the sales? Here are some points to consider when planning your next pay-per-click advertising campaign.

 Pay-per-click adverts are not for free

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising for retailers is similar than the advertising campaigns they do in the print media – they must pay for it.   The retailer needs to plan her PPC carefully otherwise the people clicking on the ad may not find what they were looking for.

Depending how expensive your keywords are, a lot of money could be wasted when the wrong audience is responding to your ads.

Here are some points to consider before starting your pay-per-click campaign:

  1. Keywords – should describe the kind of website pages where the retailer wants her ad to be displayed;
  2. Ads – the ad needs to deliver the following messages in the shortest time to read it:
    1. The retailer’s website is the best source of information that will visitor is looking for;
    2. The benefits to click on the retailer’s website is clear; and
    3. The visitors know what is expected from them once they arrive at the retailer’s website.
  3. Bid prices – the retailer will quickly find what the cost of a keyword is once her campaign has started. She should adjust bids until the ad shows the required profit;
  4. Landing page – is the page that visitors go to when clicking on a retailer’s PPC ad. The best results with a PPC ad is possible when the landing page match the theme of the keywords and ad message;
  5. Conversion path – having decided to buy, a visitor must be able to give information about the type of product, where it must be delivered and how it should be paid for. If the conversion path is not clear, the visitor may leave your website.

A PPC ad campaign is much more than selecting a couple of keywords and bet on them. A successful campaign is one that is well planned, well measured and flexible.

Visit eBizplan to help you with your digital marketing strategy.

Note

Szetela, D. and Kerschbaum, J. 2010. Pay-per-click search engine marketing: An hour a day. John Wiley & Sons.

Finding Customers in the Vastness of the Internet

No business can exists without customers. However, finding customers on the internet can be a challenge for most Bricks and Clicks retailers. Once you know who your audience is, where they hang out online and what they respond best to, you can begin to market…

The vastness of the internet

Online advertising and the retailer’s website can be exposed to thousands of people around the world for little cost due to the vastness of the internet.

The challenge is to find to the customers online.

Steps to find customers online

Dean Brookstone proposes the following steps to find customers online:

  1. Register and set up your website/blog and ensure it’s optimized for mobile devices;
  2. Help customers to find you on Google by making use of a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy;
  3. Keyword research – find out what keywords or keyword phrases will attract customers to your website;
  4. Start a blog page for your retail business – writing blogs with great content will draw customers to your website;
  5. Use hyperlinks to grow your business – internal- and inbound links show Google which pages of your website are the most important. The links may also help to improve your page ranking;
  6. Introduce your retail business on the social network sites. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram are excellent platforms to find customers online;
  7. Use email campaigns to build relationships with people and to turn them into customers;
  8. Measure your progress with analytics to improve your business.

If you put all these steps together, you will find the customers that are seemingly lost in the vastness of the internet.

If you need help with your Digital Marketing campaign or Business Planning, please visit eBizplan.

Content Marketing Tips for Retailers

The quality and relevance of the content of a retailers’ webpages can mean the difference between a sale and a bounce. One of the main reasons that people use the internet is to get information about something.

Content, which is the information part of a website, is one of the ‘trade-offs’ that is used by retailers to attract customers to their sites. If it is good, the customers may make a purchases and visit the site again.

The value of good content

According to Drew Hubbard, writing in iMedia, content will only deliver value to a brand if it delivers value to the consumer and consumers are not ignorant of bias when it comes to content.

Drew suggests that consumers want information that is presented in an objective manner and based on documented facts – not a brand’s contorted version of those facts. The best content marketers do their research and cite their sources.

Answering the customers questions

The content of a retailer’s website should anticipate the questions that his/her potential customers will ask. The content should guide the reader to the answer the questions that he or she is seeking as concisely and clearly as possible.

To anticipate the answers that the customers require, retailers should think about the people they are communicating with. If retailers understand their audiences they will know what to write, how much to write, and what vocabulary to use.

Less is better than more

A great tip from Janice Redish is that you should remember that you are having a conversation with real people. Those people bring all of their previous experience and knowledge – and also their lack of experience and knowledge – to understanding what you are writing.

People surfing the web want to get to the answers they seek as quickly as possible therefore retailers need to avoid content that contain unnecessary information that may cause the readers to lose interest and bounce the page.

Visit eBizplan for eCommerce and Digital Marketing solutions.

Note

Redish, J.G., 2007. Letting go of the words: Writing web content that works. Morgan Kaufmann.

Retail Customers use of Social Media Sites

Social media have created one of the most exciting and efficient opportunities for retailers to reach their customers. It also offer great opportunities for the owners of social media networking sites to get ‘pay per click’ income  when retailers post ads on the sites and visitors click on the ‘buy’ buttons to buy stuff.

That is why all popular social media networking sites such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter recently have added the ‘buy’ button to their sites. They did it to make online shopping easier for their users, and to make some money…

According to Anna Torres writing in the ChannelAdvisor, Twitter is backing off the easy-click purchase strategy. Maybe retail customers don’t like doing shopping on Twitter’s site?

How do retail customers use social media sites?

The customers of retailers visit specific social media sites for the following reasons:

  • Facebook – as of the first quarter of 2016, Facebook had 1.65 billion monthly active users (Statista). So retail customers use Facebook because everyone else is using it.
  • Google Plus – is an interest-based social network that is owned and operated by Google Inc. Similar to Facebook, Google Plus allows customers to add events, invite people, and then share photos and media;
  • Instagram, owned by Facebook  is a free online photo sharing and social network platform. It is a fun and quirky way for people to share their life with friends through a series of pictures.
  • Pinterest was founded by Ben Silbermann, Paul Sciarra and Evan Sharp. It is a visual bookmarking tool that helps customers to discover and save creative ideas.
  • Twitter, founded by Jack Dorsey – is a service for friends, family, and co-workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent messages. Fifty nine percent of Twitter users turn to the platform to catch up on news.

Retail customers use Twitter  differently compared to what they do with the other social media sites. By mainly reading, listening to and viewing the latest news, they seem to have less appetite for shopping, avoiding Twitter’s buy buttons…

Visit eBizplan for help in developing your online retail business.

Include a market analysis in your business plan

Drafting a business plan it is important to do a market analysis. You should determine against who your business is going to compete, what the size of the market is, whether the market is profitable and who your customers will be.

A market analysis of your business may seems like a daunting task,  but it is one of the most critical elements of your business plan. The following aspects as listed by Hanna Burmeister recently in the Grand Rapids Business Journal need to be analysed about the market in which you want to start your business:

Industry outlook

A prospect business owner needs to find answers to the following questions:

  • What’s happening in your industry?
    • Describe the size of your industry, expected growth, any sales, operational or management trends.
    • Is the industry seasonal? Are there expected economic fluctuations?
    • Are there government regulations?

Addressing these industry characteristics helps provide a detailed picture of the environment in which your business is operating.

  • Who is your target market?
    • Identify your slice of the industry. Who is your business targeting, and what are their characteristics?
    • What needs does your target market have?
    • How big is the potential market for your business?

This analysis should include both demographics and psycho-graphics.

Competitive analysis

It’s important to spend some time analyzing your competitors. By understanding what’s already out there, you can better determine your business’ competitive advantage. A competitive analysis should address the size of the market, competitor strengths and weaknesses, barriers to entry and market opportunities.

Projections

Do you know what market size and market share are? Knowing how much your potential customers spend will allow you to estimate how much of the market you can attract. Furthermore, you need to project your pricing structure and gross margins. These figures may help determine how profitable your business will be.

Additionally, all of the prior research you’ve conducted with your market analysis will help you with your pricing, gross margin and sales estimates.

Please visit my website eBizplan to read more about business plans and marketing plans.

More Mobile Sales For Online Retailers

Growing your mobile sales in the retail channel starts by delivering the same type of experiences consumers are encountering while shopping online using a computer.

Mobile has since 2014 exceed personal computers for internet usage…

The growth of mobile devices

The onset of smartphones and the roll out of Wi-Fi connections has increased mobile online shopping. Although mobile continues to drive the most sales growth for retailers, the sales still aren’t keeping up with retail traffic.

According to Andrew Meola, IBM found that smartphone traffic beat both tablet and desktop, making up 53% of all online traffic. But mobile still only accounted for 29% of all online sales.

Why does mobile sales lag behind other devices with online sales?

Customers using mobile have to fill out too many fields, and the text is too hard to read, among other things, says Dangelmaier in a recent blog. Merchants haven’t put enough weight into mobile and its impact on converting shoppers into buyers and completing purchases at checkout.

Some customers will abandon their checkout chart if they don’t have or can’t find a coupon to apply at the checkout. A lot of merchants haven’t built platforms that can easily execute coupon codes. Checkout conversion, especially on mobile devices, is a huge problem that needs to be addressed.

Visit eBizplan for your business plan and marketing plan needs.

How Direct Mail can help you to market your Website

Remember the ‘good old days’ when your post-box was filled to its capacity with flyers, brochures and promotion letters? For the most part you can now use direct mail to inform your customers and other consumers what they can find on your website…

Summer Gould writing in Target Marketing proposes 13 ways on how to use direct mail best to promote your website.

Direct mail to promote your website

  1. To generate traffic to a location, a website or event. It is equally useful if  you want to direct customers/prospects to a store, event or online location.
  2. Generate sales leads. You can target and reach qualified and interested leads easily with direct mail.
  3. Counter a competitive offer. Direct mail has some secrecy to it, unlike online.
  4. Customer loyalty. Reaching out with direct mail to customers with special offers and giveaways is a great way to reward your customers.
  5. Customer acquisition or referrals. Include these in your mail as a way for your message to be passed on to friends and colleagues.
  6. Improve customer service. Sending a thank you note to your customers is a great way to make people feel appreciated.
  7. Cross sell or upsell. You can mention other things you offer that they may be interested in based on what they have already purchased.
  8. Announcements.  Is a great way to get important information out to people quickly.
  9. Augmenting other media efforts. Direct mail ties in with so many other channels like email, web, social media, mobile, and so much more…
  10. Improving sales efficiency. Sending out mail that helps to qualify and clarify people before you sell to them is extremely important.
  11. Catalog, custom publications or newsletters. Direct mail give you the ability to showcase new information or offers to the people most likely to buy from them.
  12. Combining mailings with other companies. Co-branded mailings work well when each brand has the same target audience.
  13. Building brand awareness. Direct mail can be used to strengthen your brand’s awareness.

There is a great opportunity now to use the postal service to promote your online business because of the lower postal volumes.

Visit eBizplan for your business plan and marketing plan solutions.

Image from Wisegeek”