Developing and sustaining a competitive e-commerce website can be an enduring process, particularly given that your physical site and hosting service have to be working in tandem with your marketing activities.
Achieving the optimum balance requires an in-depth understanding of both your customer base and your service capabilities. Having each of these in tune will enable you to implement appropriate branding strategies in a way that entices your customers instead of pushing them away.
Before you dive into the fun of developing a website and engaging with your customers, you first need to lay the foundations for your brand. Based on the products/services that you are offering, how do you want your brand to be perceived in the market? What personality are you going to adopt? What value are you providing consumers with?
From here you can start thinking about how you are going to convey all of these aspects through your websites design, branding, and marketing.
Website Design and Navigation
Being an e-commerce site you are going to be expecting some traffic to be coming through. A major part of dealing with traffic is being able to control it, this includes filtering visitors seamlessly through your website to make both searching and eventual purchasing a breeze.
You are going to want to have all of the necessary information and navigational tools on a page without overcrowding it, which is why page structure is a critical aspect of design. Highlighting key points and directing wandering eyes towards them is an important skill and one that will greatly improve the overall customer experience.
Developing logos, slogans, and associated colour schemes to have portrayed on your website and across all of your marketing materials is how you physically capture your brand’s character. This helps your brand to become more memorable, thus increasing the likelihood that people will recall your brand when they need something related to your industry.
Being able to distinguish yourself from others and relay your points of difference through your branding has a major influence on attracting and retaining a loyal consumer following. Think about why a customer would choose you over competitors in the market, and use that to expand on the differences that can give you a competitive advantage.
Once you have a defined branding strategy and a complimentary website, you can add your promotional content into the mix. Whether you are inserting this content directly onto your site or marketing it through other channels, it should be a reflection of the branding that you have previously established. Keeping this consistency will reaffirm to your customers the type of brand that you are, which goes a long way towards forging lasting relationships.
Having desirable products/services is a great start, but selling them requires a certain level of execution. Your website will be a major point of contact for customers, which is why it must be easily accessible, functional and relatable to your brand.
It is also important to remember that your website is not a set and forget concept, it must be monitored and updated to achieve continued growth and sustainability.
Want to learn more about improving your website? Check out some of our articles on SEO strategy and how you can send your site up the rankings.