5 digital advertising and marketing traits it is best to reply to sooner or later
It can be argued that 2020 was the worst. In fact, I kind of agree with that feeling. However, we cannot deny that the world has not stopped and the future looks bright. In fact, the data shows it is spinning even faster than before, which can actually be a long-lasting blessing.
The numbers show that online retailing grew 10 years in just 90 days. You read that right.
In fact, e-commerce has become so important that the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) is showing great interest in digital transformation, saying that regions that are not capitalizing on the potential of e-commerce from now on are falling into Falling behind.
But what does that mean for a digital marketing or SEO agency?
Well. Here are 5 trends you should be reacting to in the future
1 Ecommerce sales are at an all-time high
Due to record-breaking online competition fueled by e-commerce during the pandemic, e-commerce sales in digital agencies soared to an all-time high with a massive flurry of small businesses and startups serving large sections of the audience Devour Big Retail.
Old wholesalers felt the boogeyman of the competition on their necks. In addition, they were amazed to find that the monster was nothing more than a huge mass of new brick and mortar stores that, in order to survive, jumped into the online world and devoured a large part of their traditional audience.
Still, the competition turned out to be a blessing. Almost 150 million new shoppers came online when the pandemic raged and it is said that online shopping is 10 years into the future in terms of net trading.
One of the key takeaways was that brands that didn’t take a holistic or “omnichannel” approach were lagging behind. Retailers went exactly where their audience was. Search engines, social media, mobile usage, streaming services and even video games are now part of the digital marketing ecosystem, using product and user data to find out how to engage customers without disrupting the online experience.
“The brands that do better at making it easier for people to buy their first product are likely to be the ones that have very complicated, beautiful stores, but no one knows how to buy them.”
Loren Padelford, General Manager at Shopify Plus
2 The democratization of the market
Get this in mind: digital marketers have no real power over the market. The future of retail is always being shaped and reshaped by new consumers.
There are experts who say consumers will go back to their old shopping habits after the pandemic. However, 48% of online shoppers said they would like to continue shopping online. That means companies have to offer exactly what they ask for.
But there is a problem. Large companies are struggling to keep up with the innovations that small and decentralized small businesses and startups have brought to the table. Many corner shops have turned personal shopping rituals into virtual experiences and made payment extremely easy by drastically reducing shopping cart abandonment rates and increasing conversions. This has caused retail stores to lose much of their luster as they traditionally tend to implement stick out strategies.
That doesn’t mean big players are doomed to fail. But on the contrary. Many of them learned the lesson quickly and are now at the top.
For example, they found that one of the biggest challenges facing ecommerce stores was shipping costs and return rates. A high response rate can be devastating for a small business. To solve this, huge investments have been made in research and development, especially in 3D modeling and augmented reality. They are now applied to the shopping experience so that customers can try on clothes or see how a piece of furniture would look in their living room before they buy. This will reduce the chances of something being returned because it is the wrong size, model, or color, giving large retailers a little respite for now.
3 Shipping is no longer an “extra”
One of the key factors in the ecommerce equation is fulfillment. Nowadays people don’t see shipping as a service. It should be free for more than 64% of consumers. This has changed the way businesses approach consumer travel.
“One of the worst things you can do is have a huge delta between customer expectation and experience.”
David Wagoner, co-founder of P3 Media
In the beginning, many companies turned their stores into fulfillment centers with automated inventory management and an optimized return process. However, real estate developers across the country have desperately built and repurposed huge warehouse spaces into fulfillment centers to help e-commerce companies process their orders and win what is known as the last mile race.
In 2020, many companies saw the need to bring their services closer to their customers. Some offered curb pickup options, which came in very handy as customers felt they were saving on shipping costs. However, this was quickly questioned by companies offering free shipping.
We all know that shipping is never free, but it has to be included in the final price. But how can you reduce shipping costs? By using strategically located fulfillment centers.
The demand for storage space has increased so much that industrial property developers are willing to pay the higher price for developing inner-city square meters. Because of this, shipping costs are falling and more and more ecommerce stores are ready to offer free shipping or even same day shipping.
4 Branding is more important than ever
The dominance of the market has made branding more difficult, but also more prominent.
More than half of Internet transactions take place in unbranded environments, such as general product search. You might be tempted to think that branding has then become secondary or even useless. However, competition has made unbranded searching a wasteful scenario, and more targeted keywords have much greater conversion potential.
However, the data shows that if you really want to drive traffic to your website, branding is more important now than ever. Website design is no longer about creating an efficient transactional page for your products. It’s about creating a destination for buyers.
“Branding is very important to our business. It’s important to have a vision that clients and clients see when they visit our properties online. “
Dan Kogan, founder of 1Digital Agency
The best way to achieve this is with clever social media campaigns, effective UX-centric designs, and personalized services. Many companies position themselves as exclusive carriers of certain products or personalize certain products to include their brand in them. There are many ways to do this; White labeling, exclusive deals, influencer takeovers on Instagram. The hardest part is finding the right channel and applying bespoke marketing strategies by working with an SEO agency.
This leads us to:
5 Customer loyalty now beats acquisition
Acquisition costs skyrocketed in 2020. The competition for ad placement on both search engines and social media became so fierce that the cost of advertising was prohibitive.
Now the magic word is “retention”. Most merchants and online businesses focus their efforts on optimizing their conversion funnel around customer loyalty. Additionally, brands are finding really imaginative ways to reward their most loyal buyers.
The subscription model is a great example of this phenomenon. Instead of a one-off transaction with a customer, more and more companies and industries are switching to a new sales model. They are now trying to add value in the form of subscriptions that turn their users into subscribers.
And that model doesn’t seem limited to traditional industries like magazines, newspapers, and fitness centers. Now we see it everywhere. Bakeries and breweries, auto repair shops and car washes, candy stores and cinemas.
The best part is that customers seem to love the idea. The idea of always being supplied with your favorite products and services is extremely attractive. For businesses, it reduces the costs associated with risk management as they now have a constant stream of revenue. A win-win situation that lowers acquisition costs and increases retention dramatically.
These 5 new trends were real game changers. Initially, there was great fear as companies were forced to close doors and adapt to new rules. But soon our collective will help us find new ways to serve our customers.
And we keep adjusting: third-party cookies seem to be scheduled to be canceled, so email addresses are once again the best way to keep in touch with your audience and get your message right to their inbox.
The time to hunt customers is coming to an end. They now have the power to determine where the markets should go and companies cannot escape their bidding.
“I think it depends: where is your customer, where is he inspired – and then you get the message across.”
Margo Hayes, Head of Digital Strategy, TSG.
Author: Marcel Casella
Content creator and strategist. I started a career as a freelance and academic writer but found my passion in the marketing world. I have been working for multinational SEO agencies for 6 years, developing content strategies for companies from all over the world.
I specialize in blogging, website content, … View full profile ›