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How E-Commerce Companies Can Stay Ahead of the Competition

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There has been a surge in the number of e-commerce companies that have popped up in the last ten years. The more people rely on the internet, the more of a necessity it becomes to have your business operational online. Our tech-reliant society heads online first before they decide to make any purchases and oftentimes, those purchases are made directly online.

Since everyone is shifting to an e-commerce first mindset, here are some ways that you can stay ahead of the competition.

Implement Affiliate Marketing

E-commerce brands can use affiliate marketing as a tool to get their customers to become advocates for their brand. Loyal customers are provided with an affiliate code that pays them a percentage of the total purchase each time someone in their network uses their code. Percentages typically range from 10-25% but these customers are used as a marketing tactic to get word out about their brand and products. Affiliate marketing is known for increasing brand loyalty because customers are sharing their feelings about your company and brand with their friends and family who trust them.

In addition to affiliate marketing, it is important to think about building an online community of people who love your brand and advocate for it on your behalf. Encourage your audience to use a branded hashtag, tag you in their photos and create a community much bigger than just the employees that work for you.

Build Exclusive Partnerships with Manufacturers

The better the partnerships you have, the better margins you will see and the more improved your brand recognition will be. Exclusive partnerships allow you to get the best deal through a mutually beneficial exchange.

Keep Customer Experience Top of Mind

If people are having a hard time navigating your e-commerce storefront, they are more likely to shop elsewhere than spend hours trying to figure out how to buy from you. Make sure that any updates you make to your website are done so with the end user in mind so as to maximize conversions. Here are some quick tips you might find helpful:

  • Offer suggestions for bundled items when checking out
  • Have a frequently asked questions page (FAQ)
  • Make the search function strong so that customers can easily find what they are looking for
  • Use responsive design and leverage colour and contrast
  • Ensure the site is built for mobile-first view since the majority of people shop directly from their mobile device

In addition to the physical website, you want to ensure that your customer service support team are well equipped with the knowledge and capacity to answer any questions that may come through from potential customers. Learn how our client Expancio created an all-in-one ecommerce solution for businesses here.

Stay Up to Date on Trends

In a society that is so driven by technology, it is more important now than ever before to jump on trends in a timely manner. Have an ear to the ground listening to what your customers want and need and respond quickly. Keep updating your products, add new features when necessary, update the website to adjust any gaps in the ordering process. Not jumping on these latest trends can have an immense negative impact on your business.

Place Your Focus on Good Quality Products

Good quality products will help you stand out from the crowd. Find a way to differentiate yourself from your competitors, usually by showing that your product is an updated version of what your competitors are offering. It is a good idea to focus on one product at a time and ensure that you have obtained the top quality version of that product before you move onto something else.

If you don’t currently have an e-commerce website, it is a good idea to start thinking about how you can make that part of your business plan. A lot of people are spending more time at home these days and they do a lot of their shopping online. You do not want to miss out on potential customers simply because they cannot reach you online.

Once you have decided you are going to build your business online, focus on the steps above to help you stand out from the competition.

About the Author

Kierstyn Pare

Kierstyn Pare

Social Media Director, King Street Media

King Street Media is a Toronto-based marketing and creative agency focused on purpose-driven growth. Their agency supports entrepreneurs, businesses and nonprofits by providing dedicated services ranging from digital advertising and social media marketing to brand strategy and content creation.

Original Article on Altitude Accelerator

Altitude Accelerator
Altitude Accelerator is a not-for-profit innovation hub and business incubator for Brampton, Mississauga, Caledon, and other communities in Southern Ontario. Altitude Accelerators’ focus is to be a dynamic catalyst for tech companies. We help our companies grow faster and stronger. Our strength is our proven ability to foster growth for companies in Advanced Manufacturing, Internet of Things, Hardware & Software, Cleantech and Life Sciences. Our team consists of more than 100 expert advisors, industry, academic, government partners. The team helps companies in Advanced Manufacturing, Internet of Things, Hardware & Software, Cleantech and Life Sciences to commercialize their products and get them to market faster.

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