In a world where over 50% of the population is now shopping online, it's more important than ever to have a strong and recognizable eCommerce brand. A well-branded online store can help you stand out from the competition, increase sales, and boost profits.
But how do you go about creating an effective eCommerce branding strategy? And what are the best ways to build your brand online? In this article, we'll answer those questions and provide some expert tips on creating a successful eCommerce branding strategy.
What Is eCommerce Branding & Why Is It Important?
eCommerce branding is the process of creating a unique identity and image for your online store. It's about more than just your logo or website design—it's the overall experience shoppers have with your brand, from their first visit to your site to post-purchase follow-up.
A robust eCommerce brand can help you in several ways, including:
Differentiating Your Business from the Competition
There are literally millions of online stores out there competing for shoppers' attention and dollars. And with new eCommerce businesses popping up daily, that competition will only increase.
An effective branding strategy can help you differentiate your business from the competition and make it more memorable in shoppers' minds. By creating a unique identity for your store, you can make it more recognizable and top-of-mind for shoppers when they're searching for products or services like yours.
Attracting New Customers and Increasing Sales
A robust eCommerce brand can also help you attract new customers and increase sales. In fact, according to a study by Nielson, nearly 60% of shoppers are more likely to buy from a familiar brand than an unfamiliar one.
What's more, when customers have a positive experience with your brand, they're more likely to become loyal, repeat customers.
- In fact, a study by Bain & Company found that increasing customer retention rates by just 5% can increase profits by 25% to 95%.
Generating Repeat Business and Loyalty from Existing Customers
As we just mentioned, a strong eCommerce brand can help turn first-time buyers into loyal, repeat customers. In fact, according to a study by Harvard Business School, acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing one.
Not only that, but loyal customers are also more valuable to your business.
- According to the same Harvard Business School study, loyal customers are worth up to 10 times as much as their first purchase.
Building Brand Equity for Your Business
Another essential benefit of eCommerce branding is that it can help you build equity for your business. Brand equity is the portion of a company's value that's attributable to its name and reputation.
And a strong eCommerce brand can go a long way toward building brand equity for your business.
- A study by Interbrand found the world's top 10 brands are worth an average of $24.5 billion each.
Increasing the Perceived Value of Your Products or Services
Another benefit of eCommerce branding is that it can help increase the perceived value of your products or services. For example, if customers perceive your products to be of higher quality, they'll be willing to pay more.
- Forrester Research found that increasing perceived value by just 1% can increase profits by up to 8%.
Commanding Higher Prices for Your Goods or Services
If you can successfully position your brand as a premium option in your industry, you'll be able to command higher prices for your goods or services.
- According to a study by McKinsey & Company, increasing prices by just 1% can increase profits by 11%.
Of course, charging higher prices is only an option if your eCommerce branding strategy successfully makes shoppers perceive your products or services as worth more.
The Different Aspects of eCommerce Branding
eCommerce branding has three main aspects: visual identity, customer experience, and reputation. Let's take a closer look at each one.
Your visual identity is how your eCommerce brand appears to shoppers. It includes your logo, color scheme, typography, and other design elements.
Your visual identity should be consistent across all of your marketing materials, from your website and social media accounts to your email newsletters and print ads. Consistency will help shoppers recognize and remember your brand.
Your customer experience is the total of all interactions shoppers have with your eCommerce brand, from their first visit to your website to post-purchase follow-up.
Every touchpoint is an opportunity to build rapport with shoppers and create a positive impression of your brand. So, it's essential to ensure that every aspect of your customer experience is up to par.
Your reputation is how shoppers perceive your eCommerce brand. It's shaped by their interactions with your brand and what they see and hear from others.
A strong reputation can help you attract new customers and generate repeat business. So, it's essential to pay attention to your brand's reputation and take steps to protect it.
How to Create a Brand Strategy for Your Online Store
Now that we've covered the various elements of eCommerce branding let's look at how to develop a brand strategy for your eCommerce business.
Identify Your Target Audience
The first step in creating a brand strategy for your eCommerce business is identifying your target audience.
Think about who you want to sell to and what needs and wants they have. What age are they? What gender? Where do they live? What do they do for a living? Understanding your target audience will help you create a brand strategy that resonates with them.
Your Mission Should Be Clear
After identifying your target audience, the next step is to develop a clear mission for your eCommerce brand.
Your mission statement should explain what your business does and why it exists. It should be brief, straightforward, and easy to understand.
Think about what makes your eCommerce business unique and what you want it to be known for. Then, use that as the foundation for your mission statement.
Clearly Provide the USP of Your Brand
The USP is the unique selling proposition of your eCommerce brand. It's what makes you different from your competitors and sets you apart in the market.
When developing your USP, think about what you offer that no one else does. For example, do you have a proprietary product? A unique feature or benefit? A patented process? Something else that sets you apart.
Remember that your USP doesn't have to be big or earth-shattering. Sometimes, the simplest things can make all the difference.
For example, the USP of the online eyeglass retailer Warby Parker is that they offer free home try-on. This simple perk makes the shopping experience more convenient for customers and helps them feel confident about their purchases.
As you can see, your USP can be anything that sets you apart from your competitors and makes your eCommerce brand more appealing to shoppers.
Be Transparent with Your Policies
Customers should be able to find information about your policies easily on your website. If they can't, they may go to a competitor's site that is more transparent.
- Make it easy for customers to find this information by including links to your policies on your website's header, footer, and checkout page.
- You can also include a link to your policies in your email newsletters and other marketing materials.
Provide Excellent Customer Service
Providing excellent customer service is essential for any business, but it's vital for eCommerce businesses.
Since customers can't see or touch the products they're buying online, they rely on your customer service team to provide information and answer their questions.
- Make sure your customer service team is friendly, helpful, and responsive. Train them on your products and policies so they can answer customers' questions confidently.
- You should also make it easy for customers to contact your customer service team. For example, include your website's phone number, email address, and live chat option.
- Make sure someone is available to answer customer inquiries promptly. The longer you take to respond, the more likely it is that the customer will take their business elsewhere.
Create a Content Strategy
Content is a critical part of any eCommerce marketing strategy. It helps you attract and engage customers, build trust and credibility, and drive sales.
To create a content strategy that meets your business goals, start by identifying the needs and wants of your target audience. What kind of information are they looking for? What type of content will help them make a purchase decision?
Once you know what kind of content your target audience wants, you can start creating it. For example, you can blog about topics related to your products, post product videos, and photos, write helpful buying guides, and more. To get the most out of your content, ensure it's well-written, accurate, and informative. It should also be optimized for search engines so potential customers can easily find it.
In addition, make sure your website is mobile-friendly. More and more people are shopping on their smartphones, so making sure your site is easy to use on a small screen is essential.
Share Your Brand's Story
Your brand's story is the foundation of your eCommerce business. It sets you apart from your competitors and makes you more relatable to customers.
Start by sharing your company's origin story to craft an engaging brand story. Why did you start your business? What inspired you to create your products?
Your brand story should be authentic, unique, and relatable. It should also be consistent across all your marketing channels, from your website to social media posts.
Don't Ignore Email Marketing
Email marketing is one of the most effective ways to reach and engage customers. It allows you to stay in touch with your customers and build relationships with them.
To get started with email marketing, create a list of email subscribers. Then, you can add an opt-in form to your website or blog.
Once you have a list of subscribers, start sending them helpful and informative emails. For example, you can send them product updates, coupon codes, and exclusive offers.
Just make sure you don't overwhelm your subscribers with too many emails. Instead, email them when you have something valuable to share, such as a new product launch or a sale.
Create a Captivating Logo & Name
Your logo and name are two of the most essential elements of your eCommerce brand. They're what customers will see first when they visit your website or social media page.
Therefore, you want to ensure your logo and name are captivating and memorable. They should also be consistent with your brand's overall look and feel.
Create a Catchy Tagline
A tagline is a short, catchy phrase that encapsulates your brand's mission or message. It should be memorable and easy to understand.
Your tagline should be reflective of your brand's personality. For example, if your brand is fun and quirky, your tagline should reflect that.
Optimize your Social Media Profiles
Social media is a powerful tool that can help you reach and engage customers. It's also an excellent platform for promoting your brand and content.
Make sure you optimize your profiles to get the most out of social media. Include your logo, website URL, and contact information. You should also post regular updates and engaging content.
Engage with Your Customers
Lastly, engaging with your customers is essential for building relationships with them. It also helps you understand their needs and wants.
There are a few ways to engage with your customers, such as social media, forums, blog comments, and surveys. You can also offer customer support and follow up with customers after they've made a purchase.
Engaging with your customers shows that you care about them and their experience with your brand. It also helps you build trust and credibility, which are essential for any successful business.
Examples of Successful eCommerce Brands
Now that you know some expert tips for building your eCommerce brand let's look at a few examples of successful brands.
Warby Parker is an online retailer that has quickly become a success story. Founded in 2010, the company offers stylish, high-quality eyewear at a fraction of the cost of traditional retail stores. Warby Parker's eCommerce success is due to several factors.
- First, the company offers a wide selection of frames, allowing customers to find the perfect pair for their face and style.
- Second, Warby Parker's prices are unbeatable. For just $95, customers can get a complete pair of glasses, including lenses.
- Third, the company makes shopping easy and convenient with free shipping and returns.
- Finally, Warby Parker gives back to the community by donating a portion of its proceeds to non-profit organizations providing eye care to needy people.
Thanks to all of these factors, Warby Parker has become one of the most successful online retailers today.
Since its inception in 2014, Leesa has quickly become one of the most successful online mattress companies.
- One key to their success has been their focus on providing an excellent customer experience. They offer free shipping and returns, a 100-night risk-free trial, and a 10-year warranty.
- In addition, they have made it easy for customers to find the right mattress by offering a quiz on their website that helps match people with the perfect bed.
As a result of their focus on the customer experience, Leesa has been able to build a loyal customer base and proliferate. In just four years, they have gone from selling mattresses out of the trunk of a car to being one of the leading online mattress companies.
Modcloth is an online retailer specializing in vintage and retro-inspired clothing and accessories. Founded in 2002, the company has been applauded for its unique aesthetic, body-positive message, and solid commitment to customer service. In recent years, Modcloth has experienced remarkable growth, becoming one of the most successful eCommerce businesses.
- A large part of Modcloth's success can be attributed to its focus on providing an engaging shopping experience. The company's website is easy to navigate, and shoppers can easily find exactly what they're looking for. In addition, Modcloth offers a wealth of information about each product, including detailed descriptions, size charts, and user-generated reviews. This level of detail makes it easy for shoppers to make informed purchase decisions, and it helps to create a sense of confidence and trust.
- Another critical element of Modcloth's success is its email marketing strategy. The company regularly sends out newsletters featuring exclusive discounts and promotions, which helps to drive traffic to the website and encourage customers to make purchases. In addition, Modcloth frequently runs contests and giveaways, which generates excitement and loyalty among shoppers.
Modcloth's commitment to providing an excellent customer experience has paid off in a big way. The company is now one of the most successful eCommerce businesses, and it shows no signs of slowing down.
Dollar Shave Club
Dollar Shave Club launched in 2012; it upended the traditional razor market. The company offered a simple and convenient way to purchase razors online and quickly gained a loyal following. In just a few years, Dollar Shave Club has become one of the most successful eCommerce companies in the world. Several factors have contributed to the company's success.
- First, Dollar Shave Club offers a great value proposition. Customers can get high-quality razors delivered to their doorsteps for a fraction of the price of traditional brands.
- Second, the company has built a strong brand identity. From its irreverent marketing campaigns to its quirky product names, Dollar Shave Club has differentiated itself from its competitors.
- Finally, the company excels at customer service. It offers free shipping and easy returns, and customers can always reach a real person via phone or chat if they have any questions or concerns.
Dollar Shave Club has become an eCommerce powerhouse thanks to its focus on these three areas.
Edible Arrangements has been a huge success story in the eCommerce space. The company was one of the first to capitalize on the trend of sending gift baskets filled with fresh fruit, and they have continued to innovate in the years since. In addition to traditional fruit baskets, Edible Arrangements now offers a wide range of unique gifts, including bouquets made with chocolate-dipped fruit, fruit-based spa products, and even cupcakes decorated to look like flowers. The company's success is due in part to its focus on customer service; they offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee and free shipping on all orders over $49.99. With a wide range of unique and delicious gifts, it's no wonder that Edible Arrangements is a leading retailer in the eCommerce space.
In the summer of 2001, two friends took a scuba diving trip to the Cayman Islands. On this trip, they had the idea for Underwater Audio - a company that would develop waterproof headphones so that people could listen to music while swimming. When they returned from their trip, they started working on a prototype, and, by 2003, they had their first product: the AquataPix MP3 Player.
Today, Underwater Audio is a successful eCommerce business with a wide range of waterproof electronics, including headphones, speakers, and portable chargers. The company has also expanded beyond just selling products; they now offer an online community where customers can share tips and advice on swimming and staying fit. Underwater Audio has become a leader in the waterproof electronics market thanks to its innovative products and strong customer base.
MVMT is an online retailer selling watches, sunglasses, and other accessories. The company was founded in 2013 by two young entrepreneurs, Jake Kassan and Kramer Laplante, with a vision to create a direct-to-consumer brand that could challenge the established players in the industry. MVMT quickly found success by selling high-quality products at accessible prices, and today the company is one of the fastest-growing eCommerce businesses in the world. In 2018, MVMT generated over $100 million in revenue and is now on track to become a billion-dollar business.
Kassan and Laplante attribute much of MVMT's success to its focus on delivering an exceptional customer experience. From its user-friendly website to its responsive customer service team, MVMT goes above and beyond to ensure that its customers are happy. It's no wonder that MVMT has become one of the most popular direct-to-consumer brands in the world. Moreover, MVMT is poised for continued success in the years to come, thanks to its innovative business model and commitment to customer satisfaction.
Amazon has long been the king of eCommerce, and there are many reasons for its success. One key factor is their impressive logistics operation. Amazon has invested heavily in developing a fleet of trucks and warehouses that allow them to deliver orders quickly and efficiently. This not only reduces shipping costs but also helps to improve the customer experience. In addition, Amazon has developed a robust platform that makes it easy for third-party sellers to list and sell their products.
This has allowed Amazon to expand its product range dramatically, offering millions of items for sale. Finally, Amazon has built a strong brand synonymous with convenience and low prices. This has helped to attract new customers and keep them coming back. Taken together, these factors have helped to make Amazon the dominant force in eCommerce.
The Bottom Line
Building a successful eCommerce business is no easy feat, but it is achievable with the right strategy. These brands have found success by focusing on a niche market, delivering an exceptional customer experience, and reinvesting their profits back into the business. If you're looking to build a successful eCommerce brand, persevere in facing adversity, focus on your customer, and constantly innovate.