Digital marketing has come a long way. Born in the 1990s as a lone internet search engine, it has expanded into a behemoth of blogs, social media, websites, emails, SEO, and pay per click ads, and that’s just a small sampling. It’s constantly in flux and is 100% necessary for your business to thrive. But if mishandled, it can lead to flubbed opportunities, overspending, missed sales and unhappy customers.
No one has time for that, least of all in 2020. We’re giving you the agency scoop on 4 popular types of digital marketing, and how your store should implement them for success.
Before making a purchase, consumers use websites to conduct initial research. And your site’s outdated design could lose a sale in 0.05 seconds.
75% of consumers admit to making judgements on a company’s credibility based on website design, and 39% will stop engaging completely if images take too long to load. The design must be engaging and easy to navigate, and the site must be responsive. In 2018, 63% of retail website visits occurred on a smartphone, and there’s no doubt that percentage has gone up in the last two years. Making sure you’ve checked all the boxes to trigger organic search engine optimization
The big question right now is whether to convert to e-commerce. It’s doable; you just need to have an enterprise system in place that connects your website with your inventory.
2. Social Media
You already know that Facebook and Instagram are great platforms to connect with customers. Sharing new merchandise, promoting sales and events, and highlighting services are just a few of the ways you can engage.
If you’re not advertising on social yet, you should take it under serious consideration. You can reach an entire new audience in your local market and target them based on specific demographics. You can specifically promote an offer (10% off diamond earrings), or drive them to your brick and mortar store (an ad with a “get directions” button). It’s cost-effective and has great ROI.
Twitter is best left for news and the big brands. Pinterest has jewelry content, but because there’s no real way to geo-target, it’s not an efficient platform to spend your time or marketing dollars on.
3. Email & Text
It’s true that inboxes are overwhelmed, and there’s a chance your message could go unread, but emails still matter. An intriguing subject line could entice someone to open your email about an upcoming sale or trunk show. Building your list, using a consistent branded template, and sending out regular emails is essential.
Having a text service available is becoming necessary, too. Approximately 90% of customers would rather text than call. It’s the ideal option for confirming appointments, quickly responding to questions, or even soliciting reviews. Be sure you work with a legit database, and get explicit consent from customers to text them.
Shoppers are becoming more accepting of downloading and using apps during their shopping experience. Big omnichannel merchants like Kroger have become more efficient at offering digital coupons and in-store wayfinding. And with the current situation, more consumers are using big box store apps to shop and pick up orders, skipping the need to even go inside.
But before developing an app, ask why your store needs one. A grocery store app has the potential to be used at least once a week by a unique shopper. How often will yours be used? Will customers even want to take the time to download it, or use storage space on their phones?
While an app can increase sales, they can be expensive to develop (especially if you want to do it right the first time). Then there’s monthly management fees and costs to maintain it in platforms like the Apple App store and Google Play. And as an independent retailer, you must consider how the app will integrate with your existing technologies (point-of-sale system), and what cybersecurity measures you’ll take. All in all, the ROI is slim.
If you’re interested in how digital marketing can help your business, check out this website design and social media program we implemented. Questions? Want to chat more? Call us at 615-256-3393, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.