How to Boost Your E-Commerce Sales with Marketing Automation
In the e-commerce business, one of the comments people often hear is how difficult it is to stay organized as the business grows. Of course, it is a great and beautiful thing to see your business prospering. But if you are not skilled enough to manage it properly, it could end up killing your company instead.
The fact is it can be a real handicap to handle the increasing demands of your customers, the sales processes that are becoming more complex, and all the other necessities to manage growth. It mostly happens when you cannot set your priorities and end up doing the most urgent tasks instead of what's important. Taking shortcuts is simply not the way you handle growth.
There are plenty of options on how to deal with growth. You can hire more people or move to a bigger location. But that would be expensive, especially if you are a new and small business. A more practical solution would be to employ tools and systems to help automate your processes. For instance, there is email marketing automation to ensure your hot prospects will not turn cold.
Compared to new hires that still need to be trained and not guaranteed to provide desired results, automating your ecommerce process saves you time, effort, and costs. Automating your email marketing is one of the strategies to help you with this. But while it is the most reliable and profitable method to boost your sales, it is challenging to master.
Plenty of things can cause an email campaign to fail. For someone who only started, you might find yourself giving it up so quick. But to give it up is a huge mistake. After all, it is one of the most effective marketing channels. Personalized emails can especially have a significant impact on your bottom line.
There are many strategies you can use to generate sales for your ecommerce business, from when you use Facebook ads to sending out promotional emails. But these strategies focus only on the end of the sales funnel and misses the conversion opportunities provided by the traffic along the way. But email automation can cover all those missed opportunities and more.
How Marketing Automation Works
Marketing automation is a tool that allows brands to create a rich audience profile. It also helps them employ targeted marketing to drive conversions. Ecommerce businesses can take advantage of automation by turning data into insights that create optimized content for customers. One of the excellent examples of marketing automation is the automated email marketing campaigns.
It can refer to the process or the software platforms used by companies to systematize their marketing and sales processes. But the main idea is for it to eliminate the manual, repetitive tasks such as drafting and sending emails. While these tasks are not difficult, they are time consuming, distracting, and adds to your expenses as well.
Your business will do better doing meaningful to-dos that will have a more significant impact on your bottom line. This is where marketing automation can help you - by setting up the manual processes at once and then you can forget about them. While you focus on the bigger projects, your automated campaigns can run quietly on the background.
High-Level marketing automation can do this - send specific content based on the data and behavior of the leads. When applied on email marketing, you can send emails to prospects depending on their demographics, location, interests, buying habits, and other segment categories. The goal, of course, is to close more sales.
How do you employ marketing automation to improve your ecommerce sales? Here are some steps to follow:
Determine Your Scope of Work
You need to determine the scope of work that you need to automate. Every company has unique ways of performing their marketing activities. They also advertise on different channels with some focusing only on emails while others prioritize social media as well. You need a complete understanding of your marketing workflow and the buyer journey first.
It will help you create a list of all your marketing activities and figure out which of them can be automated. Consider which processes can convert leads more effectively, boost customer lifetime value, and drive more repeat purchases when automated. When you know the scope of work, you can better organize your marketing automation campaign.
Describe Your Marketing Automation Strategy
Just jumping straight into using marketing automation tools is easy, but best if you don't. You need to think through and clearly define your strategy. Now that you know your scope of work, the next thing to do is describe what goals you want to achieve by automating some of your work. When you know your goals, you can determine if you need more resources for your campaign.
Keep your goals in mind as you consider the techs that can support your marketing automation strategy. Consider what others use, their strengths, and weaknesses. Come up with a plan or a roadmap with all the steps to take. Most important of all, keep clear and stay committed to all the things necessary to your success.
Select the Best Marketing Automation Solution
Whether you are an SMB or a giant company, you will find there are marketing automation solutions ideal for every size of business. There are many options available and choosing the one that suits best to what your company requires is a difficult task. Your scope of work and strategy can both help in determining the kind of features you want, the pricing plan, number of users, more.
If you are using other tools in your system, you also must ensure they can work seamlessly with your selected marketing automation solution. It is a crucial step, so you need careful consideration when you choose the one. Take the time to do some research and read reviews to figure out if any is suitable for what you need in your business.
Integrate the Marketing Automation Solution
When implementing a marketing automation solution in your system, there are different approaches you can take. Two of the most common strategies are the Nurturing approach and the Multi-Channel approach. You can integrate them into your existing marketing workflow to help achieve your goals, such as improving ecommerce sales.
With the Nurturing approach, you send emails to leads and prospects periodically to lead them through the marketing funnel. You nurture your relationship with them and guide them through the buyer's journey. In the Multi-Channel approach, your strategy is to create a relationship with your audience through various channels such as mobile, social media, emails, website, and more.
Adjust and Improve Your Marketing Workflow
You can increase your success by continuously evaluating how your marketing automation is doing. Also, find out more ways you can make it more efficient and effective. Keep your eyes on the things that work and don't, so you can improve your marketing workflow accordingly. Some of the activities that can optimize your workflow are:
- Bring all your campaigns on various channels on the same page to keep it organized.
- Create interconnected marketing campaigns that help you acquire, retain, and reactivate unresponsive customers.
- Don't restrict your marketing automation solutions solely on email marketing, but also social media ads, landing pages, and more.
Turn New Customers into Returning Customers
One of the advantages of marketing automation is that it can help you turn new customers into returning ones. Your small business can use it to communicate with leads and take advantage of extreme flexibility in delivering your messages to them. Some of the automation strategies that can increase your conversions include:
It is rare for new customers to buy from a business the first time. Using marketing automation, you can build and nurture a relationship with clients. For instance, you can send them personalized emails that let them know more about your mission and products, encouraging and increasing your conversion rates.
Follow-up on Potential Sales
You can also automate your follow-up emails to send to a customer browsing your website or abandons their cart. You can also send emails to answer a customer service question, which might help them complete their transaction. Utilizing other features like follow-up reminders also keep you on top of all your leads.
Tracking the Buyer Journey
Marketing automation software usually has tracking abilities. It will help you know your customers more and give you insights on the customer journey, such as how long it usually takes for them to complete a transaction. All the information you can obtain can be used to make the process and experience better for customers, so they return the next time.
Have an Email Marketing Campaign with Automated Email List Segmentation
Email segmentation is one of the most overlooked strategies you should employ when implementing email marketing automation. By segmenting your email list, you can separate them into categories based on various factors that enable you to cater to their needs. Personal attention is the key to getting your customers to return and that's what doing an automated email list segmentation can do.
If you haven't tried segmenting your email list yet, here are some approaches to help you.
Start by Segmenting on a Single Key Variable
If you haven't done any segmentation before, it is best to start small. Begin by choosing a single key variable, the most relevant attribute about your business. Use this to categorize your emails. The simplest segmentation would be to separate your list into whether your customers are male or female. But with more information you have, you can segment your emails more effectively.
Start with Your Goal When Developing a Strategy
The most logical course when developing a segmentation strategy is to start with your goal. Consider what you want to achieve for your emails and use the data to base on how to strategize. For instance, if your goal is to raise funds, segment your emails based on customers who'll likely send donations or not. The idea is to create a highly pragmatic email campaign.
The One-to-One Segmentation Approach
The one-to-one basis is simply described as the personalization approach. In this technique, you need your creativity. You can deliver on this approach with help from more specific information about your customers. Using that information, you can draft and send personalized emails directly to their inbox. It is one of the techniques known to get you a higher click rate and conversion rate.
Set-Up Browse Abandonment Emails
There's a hard truth you need to know about marketing - even emails cannot ensure your ecommerce site traffic will result in a conversion. You need to use plenty of methods to optimize your site for conversions, one of which is the Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO). In this method, you try to persuade your prospects to take your desired action.
If you have the right data, this technique could be quite useful. Of course, CRO is not enough to fix all the wrong things in your marketing campaign. That's where automating emails come into play, as it helps to leverage site data and increase conversions. One such type of emails is the Browse Abandonment Emails, which is sent to persuade your visitors to come back and take another look.
With these emails, you can remind your visitors to return to your site and their cart to complete their purchase (helpful information in Convertkit review). It is an incredibly effective method to decrease your visitors who drop off. This is even more effective if you perform segmentation. Including this technique in your email marketing automation campaign (revise will help incredibly in boosting your sales.
You see here how useful marketing automation is for increasing your ecommerce sales. Of course, automating your emails is not enough. It is best to perform the technique in a multi-channel approach. With that, you will have further increased your chances of getting more leads and conversions, which in turn improves your bottom line.