Posts Tagged ‘E-commerce’

Affiliate_Search_Engine

Affiliate Search Engine

Affiliate Search Engine Programs

You can find an affiliate program almost anything nowadays — including affiliate search engine programs. Although the list has decreased greatly in the past years, there are still some search engines that give you, as an affiliate, a part of what they earn if you refer their service to others. These affiliate search engine programs are not offered by the big search engines such as Google, Bing, or Yahoo, but you might be able to get some commissions by promoting them. Many people are fed up with Google and all of their “unfair” rules and rule changes that happen overnight. And they could be looking for other options.

The most recognized search engine that offers an affiliate program is 7Search. It is also one of the few remaining. The 7Search affiliate program is a Pay-Per-Search program and it advertises over 14,000 participating affiliates. You can earn commissions in two ways: by installing a search box on your website, and then getting a commission when someone does a search, or through direct text links to search results. You make three and a half cents per search or 63 percent of the revenue share from all of your text links. You could also decide to accept a bit lower rate for each search that is performed in exchange for earning credits at the 7Searches mother company’s (Emergency24) banner exchange program. You get paid on your commissions every 3 months and you must have earned at least 25 dollars for your check to be sent out. Otherwise, your earnings accrue until you meet the 25 dollar mark.

In general, 7Search seems to be a popular choice for many marketers both for its PPC results and its affiliate programs. Claims from those who have used the PPC platform to advertise their sites and businesses are that their ads are getting viewed by a large, targeted market, and returns on investments are very impressive. Those who participate in the affiliate program also claim to earn a decent share and they do get paid on time.

When you sign up to be an affiliate, you get a search engine box that you can put into your website and when your usual visitors come in, they can easily use this box to do their next searches. When they do this, you make money since the box that you are given has its own code that is specific to you and your earnings. You will not be able to make a living off of this type of affiliate income, but it is something that you can use to enhance your current earnings. Will affiliate search engine programs come back into play again? Right now it seems that most traffic is still going through Google which is definitely at the forefront of PPC. But it’s hard to predict even what will happen with Google in the fast moving world of the web.

How To Best Build Customer Relationships With E-mail Marketing

If you thought that the days of using email as a marketing tool are long behind you, think again! Marketing through email was among the earliest marketing strategies available over the Internet, and it is far from obsolete. There are new ideas, strategies and techniques that keep coming out to help your marketing be effective. Make use of the reliable power of marketing via email by taking a look at the following tips!

When creating your emails, you should stay clear of utilizing a “Buy Now!” approach. messages. This spammy-sounding way of writing may cost you customers. They know you want to sell your products, so build a steady relationship with them first and present it and yourself in a professional manner. Your customers will most definitely appreciate this and are more apt to make purchases from you because of it.

Any content you intend on emailing out should be proofread and edited. Every email and newsletter you send out should be error-free. Make sure you test out the format so it will work out and show up on the screen how you had imagined it. Be sure that if there are links in the email you test them first.

TIP! Be sure you proofread your emails before you send them. You have to be sure that everything in the email is correct.

Try different email formats. Make sure that the information that’s very important is at the top, as well as new offers. Try using various formats to figure out which of them gets more responses. Continue to use the method that works best. This way your readers know exactly what to expect and where they can find what they would like to read.

Always get customers’ permission before sending them emails. Customers won’t take you seriously if you spam them or send them anything they didn’t ask for. In some cases, potential customers become disinterested and choose not to work with your company.

Make sure that people actually want to receive emails from you by using a double opt-in strategy. This may seem like a lot, but it guarantees that the person is interested in receiving emails, so it eliminates the chances that you or your email service provider gets into any trouble.

Use A/B testing of your subject lines to test effectiveness. Split your mailing list into two groups and mail one email with one subject line to one group and another to the other group. This is a great way to measure the effectiveness of each subject line, helping you to understand how to send out emails that get read.

TIP! Try using A/B testing on your subject lines. Send half of your messages with one subject, and half with the other.

Avoid sending major marketing with email messages around holidays. Your emails may get overlooked since many people aren’t around their computers at this time. Keep in mind that there could be exceptions to this. Emails about special promotions like Black Friday are exceptions to this.

If you want your marketing emails to be effective, give your customers lots of options. This will allow your subscribers to set the parameters as they see fit, leaving only the information they feel at ease about and receiving only the content that matters most to them. If they feel like they’re in control over the process, they will feel more comfortable.

Mailing List

Try out new formats with your email. Any format you use should always include the newest and most important information at the top. But keep trying new formats and ideas until you discover the one or ones that provide you with the greatest number of responses. When you have a layout that is very effective, stick with it. This will give your consumers an idea of what they could expect from you, as well as giving them information on where they could read about you.

TIP! Try out new formats with your email. Keeping your most vital information near the top is important in any layout you try.

It is a legal requirement to get someone’s permission before adding them to your mailing list. Not doing so will anger people, which will result in deleted emails and unsubscribing from your mailing list. If you have people complaining to your email provider, you might get taken offline for violating their policies.

Make sure your recipients know what to do. Don’t leave anyone guessing about how you want them to respond. Tell them clearly. Include obvious links with instructions on how your readers should proceed once they get to your site. These sections can be repeated by just including them within the very top and bottom portions of your emails.

The value of email promoting is alive and well, as you have seen. Heed the advice in this article and continue searching for ways to present an innovative and effective email promoting campaign to your customers.

Get permission if you are going to contact customers by email. People generally see unwanted emails like spam and delete or ignore them without taking the time to read them. ISP policy violations may also occur if you send mass emails to people who don’t want them.

Lots of folks want to understand the subject of email marketing

emails but don’t know where to begin. Luckily, the following article has some great information to help you get started. Now put what you have read in this article to use.

Industry Brief: CAN-SPAM, CASL & GDPR

Your Go-To Guide CAN-SPAM, CASL & GDPR
 
When it comes to email marketing, CAN-SPAM, CASL & GDPR can be daunting terms. Starting in May of 2018, email marketers need to be much more diligent about their content and opt-out options if they want to avoid hefty fines.
 
We have prepared an industry brief alongside InboxPros to help you understand and get ahead of these new regulations. Your Go-To Guide to CAN-SPAM, CASL & GDPR will break down each term and define the rules and regulations around each aspect so you know what to include and avoid in your email marketing efforts. Get prepared!

Disclaimer: We love email automation, all things marketing, and especially the Oracle Marketing Cloud, but we are not attorneys. Please consult with your legal team regarding your specific situation. This is only a guide to get you started.

If you like what you see here, be watching for more! Our calendar has a few more pieces like this coming up.

Finally, our team is full of Marketing Geeks. If you find you have an issue, need help with strategy or are looking for support with your marketing automation, contact us! We love helping companies take their marketing efforts to the next level.

read-the-full-story-button

 

 

The post Industry Brief: CAN-SPAM, CASL & GDPR appeared first on Relationship One.

Read more: relationshipone.com

3 Quick Tips To Grow Your Email Opt-Ins By 400%

co-founder

Building your email list might not sound like a huge deal when you’re in the ecommerce space, but it can have a huge impact on your sales.

According to a Marketo study, 96% of consumers who land on a website aren’t yet ready to buy.

Capturing those leads’ email addresses allows you to nurture them toward a future purchase. If you don’t bother to collect email opt-ins, those consumers might buy from a competitor instead.

Think about the last time you bought a product online.

You might have visited several stores, read only reviews, and researched feature availability. And that’s only if you were committed to purchasing something fairly soon.

But what if you heard from one particular ecommerce store once a week?

Maybe you would have followed that company on social, visited its website more than once, and remembered its name when you finally wanted to buy the product.

Still not convinced?

Believe it or not, you can calculate the value of a lead.

Simply divide the amount of money you generate from email opt-in customers by the number of emails in your database.

This makes lead generation trackable.

As you grow your opt-ins, you can track how much those leads contribute to your bottom line. Once you see those numbers, you’ll be glad you made the effort.

But how do you grow your opt-ins by 400% or more? And what mistakes should you avoid along the way?

I’m going to answer those questions (and more).

Let’s dig into my three quick lead-generation tips for building your email opt-in campaign.

Tip #1: Create an Offer That People Can’t Refuse

Starting now, think of email addresses as currency.

When you ask someone to give you their email address for marketing purposes, you’re executing a transaction.

According to the latest statistics from the Radicati Group, consumers receive 269 billion emails every day.

By 2021, that number is expected to grow to nearly 320 billion.

With all these emails flying into inboxes, you have to earn the privilege of emailing your leads. They won’t give away their addresses for free.

That’s where the offer comes in.

As I said, the lead-generation process is a transaction.

If you want something of value — an email address — you must provide something of value in return. In most cases, this is a lead magnet.

If you’re in the ecommerce field, you might consider offering a discount as your lead magnet.

Bliss, a beauty brand, incentivizes email opt-ins with a 20% discount off the subscriber’s first order.

email opt in Bliss

It doesn’t just work for B2C businesses, either.

Freund Container, a B2B business that sells custom packaging and containers, collects emails by offering 10 percent off the subscriber’s first order.

email opt in Freund Container

Your lead magnet doesn’t have to be a discount, though. You could offer anything you want as long as it conveys real value.

To determine the best lead magnet for your audience, consider The 6 Principles of Persuasion by Dr. Robert Cialdini.

By better understanding human psychology, you can anticipate what your audience wants.

Want more insights like this?

We’re on a mission to provide businesses like yours marketing and sales tips, tricks and industry leading knowledge to build the next house-hold name brand. Don’t miss a post. Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Reciprocity.

This is the old give-to-get adage.

When we receive something of value, we are more likely to want to give something back.

By offering a lead magnet, such as a free checklist or toolkit, you show that you’re willing to be generous with your knowledge. Your audience will want to reciprocate.

Commitment.

You might have heard of Simon Sinek’s “Start With Why” movement.

It’s built on this particular principle, which states that we align ourselves with people who share our values.

If your lead magnet is a coupon or discount code, you show that you value frugality. Since most people are or want to be frugal — save money — they’ll feel inclined to sign up for your list.

But it’s not just about saving money.

If your lead magnet is an e-book, for instance, that tells people how to solve a problem, you demonstrate commitment and commonality.

People who have that problem will want your e-book and will feel willing to part with their email addresses.

Social Proof.

Most consumers don’t want to be “first.” It’s too much of a risk.

That’s why door-to-door salespeople often lead their pitch with something like,

“Hey, your neighbors, the Smiths, just bought an alarm system from us, so we thought you might be interested, too.”

It’s a form of social proof. If consumers know other people are buying something, they want in on the action.

Your offer should include social proof, such as testimonials, the number of people subscribed to your list, major publications that have reviewed your product, or third-party reviews.

Authority.

People trust thought leaders.

It’s why Seth Godin can sell millions of books — he’s demonstrated that his ideas make magic happen in the marketing space.

You don’t have to be a world-renowned speaker.

Businesses can convey authority in lots of ways, such as by providing your unique credentials or certifications or by citing media figures who have interviewed you. Case studies work, as well.

Likability.

Scrub Daddy, a product that first debuted on the television show “Shark Tank,” has sold billions of products based at least in part on likeability.

The founder went on television and presented himself as the guy next door — someone who saw a need, developed a product, and retained humility in the process.

If you’re friendly, people will like you.

Scarcity.

When we think something is in short supply, we want it more.

Our brains are wired to spend the least amount of effort and use the least amount of resources as humanly possible. Which means when you present an open-ended offer to someone, they are much less likely to get it.

If you create a sense of scarcity, the brain instantly believes its’ about to lose out and it pounces on the opportunity.

Create scarcity by limiting time or resources. Make an offer that only lasts for 24 hours, for instance, or provide a product that’s in limited supply.

Quick Tips and Insights on the Offer

If you ask a “yes-or-no” question first, you will typically generate 20 to 30 percent more leads.
Journeys and courses convert better than e-books by 16 percent, so consider getting creative with your lead magnets.
You should offer your lead magnet throughout your website (homepage, blog, header, exit pop-up, etc.). You can vary the offer or language on different pages if necessary to make it relevant.
A good lead magnet will generate 5 emails for every 100 unique visitors.
Our co-founder’s site NeilPatel.com generates roughly 7.4 emails for every 100 unique visitors.

Tip #2: Make Your Presentation Stand Out From the Crowd

Have you ever been to a fancy restaurant?

You might have noticed that the presentation of the food is almost as important to the chef as how the dish tastes.

That’s true for lead generation, too.

If you’re trying to convince website visitors to sign up for your email list, you need to get their attention in a positive way.

There are several ways to present your offer:

Top navigation
Sidebar
Footer
Body copy
Popup
Top bar

The first four options I named can work well, but they’re not as effective as the last two.

Why? Because we’re used to seeing content in the navigation, sidebar, footer, and body copy. It often fades into the background.

A popup or a top bar offers something unique and different.

They capture your attention right away.

A software like Hello Bar allows you to create popups, top bars, sliders, modals, and other lead-generation assets that turn your website into an opt-in machine.

A top bar sits at the top of your website. You can have one on every page, adjusting the copy as needed based on the page’s contents.

email opt in top bar

You can include a form field to collect email addresses in a top bar.

These are also useful for announcing sales, encouraging people to follow you on social media, and more.

When you log into your Hello Bar account, you can select the type of bar you want to show your visitors and customize it. For instance, you might want to add a slider or modal to collect more emails.

But don’t ignore the secret weapon that’s criminally underutilized.

A page takeover — also called an exit popup — takes over the user’s browser screen in place of your existing website when the visitor attempts to click away from the page.

It doesn’t stop the user from exiting the site, but it gives him or her a reason to stay.

email opt in exit pop-up

You can add images, testimonials, or anything else you want to the exit popup. Make it as appealing as possible so users will want to take advantage of your offer.

Let’s go back to those psychological principles.

If you know your audience wants to save money, offering a discount or coupon code can trigger their desire to be frugal.

Similarly, adding a sense of urgency (such as a 24-hour time limit on the offer) can produce more opt-ins.

People don’t want to miss out on something amazing.

You just have to convince them they want what you’re offering, and the best way to do that is to get to know your audience and test different offers.

Some marketers shy away from popups altogether. They say they no longer work and that they’re just annoying for the user.

However, our experience doesn’t bear out those assumptions.

Email Opt-in Case Study: NutritionSecrets.com.

I used to run a website that sold nutrition supplements. I’ve since sold it to another company.

Deploying an exit intent popup on NutritionSecrets.com resulted in email opt-in growth of 400%.

Those are crazy results.

The popup offered significant value:

“I’m sharing everything on my journey to losing 30 pounds in a healthy way.”

It appealed to anyone who wanted to shed a few pounds.

The CTA was a positive affirmation:

“I Want to Be Healthy.”

For Nutrition Secrets, we were originally collecting fewer than 10 leads per day with a simple sidebar.

When we added an exit intent campaign in Hello Bar, like you see here, we went to 50 leads per day and increased our conversion rate from around 1% to 4.5 %!

Tip #3: Timing and Location Are Everything

Have you ever found yourself on a site that instantly threw a popup in your face?

Maybe a push notification offer appeared, as well, before you could even begin to navigate the site.

If you’re like many consumers, you likely clicked away without bothering to explore the site further.

Annoying website visitors is a surefire way to kill your conversion rate.

For one thing, you don’t know why the visitor has come to your site. The offer you push on them might not even be relevant to their needs or desires.

Worse, it’s a relationship killer.

You destroy trust, authority, and credibility with one wrong move.

You must then overcome that obstacle before you can even think about converting the visitor.

You must offer the best user experience possible.

Tyler’s, a brick-and-mortar and online sporting gear retailer, 2Xed their conversion rates after switching to BigCommerce and improving the user experience flow.

email opt in tylers

But timing your offers correctly and putting them in the right locations on your site are absolutely key to getting the highest possible conversion rate.

After improving the customer experience, focus on delivering the right message at the right time.

Behavior Based Marketing.

We love using behavior-based marketing.

It’s all about making decisions based on what a visitor does after arriving on a site.

The timing for when you present an offer is key.

Creating offers based on people’s behavior is also essential, especially when it comes to ecommerce marketing.

People are generally searching Google or your site with a specific intent, so you have to anticipate what those visitors need with your offer.

How do you do this?

First you have to understand what your users are doing.

Head into Google Analytics and take a look at the pages on your site with the highest traffic.
google analytics
Look at what action steps people are taking on those specific pages.
Craft your offer based on the psychological principles described above.

Now, it’s time to take inventory of your site.

When are your offers currently offered to visitors? What is your conversion rate on those offers?

If they’re performing well, leave them alone.

You can also A/B test them against another offer to see if you can boost your conversion rate even higher.

If you’re not getting good conversions, decide when you are going to present your offer to visitors based on what people are doing on the pages.

If people are leaving your site constantly, for example, a page takeover on exit is great. It’ll capture their attention and give them a reason to stick around.

But what if people are sticking around for a while? Delay your offer deployment based on time on page. To boost your conversion rate even further, take into account what attracts people to individual pages.

For instance, if it’s a product page, deploy an offer based on that specific product.

Personalization can increase email opt-ins by a significant margin.

Now, let’s talk about location.

You may want to offer the same freebie in several different ways. For instance, you could use a slider and an exit intent popup, but vary the language in the headline and CTA for each.

Before you set them up, consider the state of awareness that someone is in before they access that page.

The higher the state of awareness, the more that you can ask them for. Conversely, the lower the state of awareness, the bigger incentive you need to give for someone to take action on your offer.

The key is to understand your visitors’ reality so you don’t turn them off and make them click away

If you haven’t already, check out a heat mapping software tool like Crazy Egg to see where people are spending the most time on your website.

These can allow you the opportunity to see if you should put a sidebar on certain pages with an opt-in opportunity or perhaps put one in the header of your homepage.

What is important is serving the right message at the right time so that it appeals to your audience.

Executive Summary

Email marketing is huge. Growing your email opt-ins by a significant margin can result in huge profits.

It begins the process of lead nurturing so you can create relationships with your subscribers.

But it all starts with email collection.

If nobody acts on your offers, you leave money on the table. Follow the three top tips to grow your email list.

Create an offer that people can’t refuse, make sure your presentation stands out, and serve up the offer at the right time and in the right location.

It’s that simple.

Remember, email addresses are currency. You have to offer something of value to get an email address in return.

That thing of value might be a mini-course, a coupon, or something else entirely.

As long as it’s enticing, you’ll collect email addresses.

Human psychology can help you improve your offer and present it in the most attractive way.

Start by improving the user experience. Don’t annoy or irritate your audience. Give them time to check out your site.

Encourage reciprocity by being generous with information. Show you’re willing to give away something of value for free.

Use social proof, authority, likability, and scarcity to further reel in the subscribers.

What’s your best lead generation hack?

Want more insights like this?

We’re on a mission to provide businesses like yours marketing and sales tips, tricks and industry leading knowledge to build the next house-hold name brand. Don’t miss a post. Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Read more: bigcommerce.com

Affiliate_Marketing_Network_Program_Equal_Good_Money

Affiliate Marketing Network Program Equal Good Money

If you really want to increase the security of your online income and leverage all the benefits of the internet you really need to consider affiliate marketing network program. This is using your affiliate marketing skills to build a business that has a lot of levels of people under you. You get to leverage the work of all of these other people to help you make more money.

With ‘traditional’ affiliate marketing programs you get paid a commission when you make a sale. This is a great business model and you can make a lot of money. But, if you want to really rake in the money you can use the affiliate marketing model and combine that with a network marketing company. By doing this you can not only make money when you make a sale, but if that person joins your network marketing organization you’ll make a percentage of all the sales they make too.

This residual income will continue to grow even if you don’t increase the number of visitors you get to your website. Why? Because you’ll be getting a percentage of all the sales that the people in your organization are making. You won’t just be getting paid for your efforts but you’ll also make money off of the efforts of everyone in your organization.

That way you won’t have to worry about whether or not your sales will stay at a certain level since you will also be making money on the sales that are made by the other people in your organization.

Another great benefit of this business model is that most network marketing companies will have all the members on some type of autoship. That means that they automatically get some of the companies product every month automatically. So even if for some reason your website traffic falls off a little bit for a few months, you’ll still have all the income from the autoships that you and all the other people in your organization are on.

You will still need to learn some basic internet marketing techniques to drive qualified traffic to your website. The more traffic you get the more customers you’ll have and the bigger you can grow your organization.

The good news is, especially if you are just starting out, that many of the online methods for driving traffic to your website are completely free to use. Don’t let that fool you though, even though they are free they’re still extremely effective and should not be overlooked.

One of the best free methods, hands down, is article marketing. With this method you simply have to write insightful informative articles about your business. Submit them to an article directory, for free, and drive qualified traffic to your website.

Two of the most powerful, and profitable, home business are affiliate marketing and network marketing. When you combine them and start your own business using an affiliate marketing network program you are combining the leveraging ability of network marketing along with the enormous volume and automation of affiliate marketing. You truly are getting the best of both worlds and you can make as much money as you want as long as you are willing to learn the skills needed and spend the time to get your business off the ground.

Lead Generation: 5 Tactics Every Marketer Should Focus On

A strong, effective lead generation campaign isn’t about clicks and impressions, it’s about the money and value that it generates. Read about 5 tactics every marketer should focus on when implementing a pay-per-click (PPC) program and email nurture program.

The post Lead Generation: 5 Tactics Every Marketer Should Focus On appeared first on SendGrid.

Read more: sendgrid.com

Collective #430

C430_WOTW

Inspirational Website of the Week: An Interesting Day

No animations but a brilliant layout and a unique design with some nice details. Our pick this week.

Get inspired

C430_optin

Our Sponsor
Bloom: eMail Opt-In And Lead Generation Plugin For WordPress

Bloom gives you the power to display opt-in forms using integrations of the most popular email marketing systems available.

Check it out

C430_cms

Publii

Publii is a static-website-building tool for every skill level with a GUI to build a safe, fast and stylish website.

Check it out

C430_IEGrid

CSS Grid in IE: CSS Grid and the New Autoprefixer

Daniel Tonon’s three-part series on CSS Grid in Internet Explorer. In this second part he tackles the common misconception that the IE implementation of CSS grid is extremely difficult.

Read it

C430_feature

Introduction to Feature Policy

Learn everything about “Feature Policy” which allows web developers to selectively enable, disable, and modify the behavior of certain APIs and web features in the browser. By Eric Bidelman.

Read it

C430_subgrid

CSS Grid Level 2: Here Comes Subgrid

Rachel Andrew explains the new features of CSS Grid Level 2.

Read it

C430_cssdoodles

CSS Doodles

A lovely set of CSS doodles by Agathe Cocco.

Check it out

C430_generative

The Mutable Gallery

A collection of generative artworks by Heydon Pickering.

Check it out

C430_text

Textalytic

Textalytic is a free Natural Language Processing service that handles pre-processing, analyzing, and visualization in an easy to use web interface.

Check it out

C430_iconsystems

The guide to integrating and styling icon systems?- SVG sprites, SVG symbols and icon fonts

The second part in a two-part series on icon systems with focus on SVG image sprites, SVG symbols and icon fonts. By Sebastiano Guerriero.

Read it

C430_physics

Physics-Based Background Scroll Effects

In case you missed it: a tutorial on how to create an animated background effect with Matter.js.

Read it

C430_loading

Infinitely drawing icons

A great loading animation of icons by Mikael Ainalem.

Check it out

C430_clocks

Clock Shop

A collection of beautiful and unusual clock demos.

Check it out

C430_ab

The Link Bar, an Ecommerce Mobile Homepage Navigation Alternative (to the Hamburger Menu)

Some interesting AB test results of using the link bar navigation pattern in mobile sites.

Check it out

C430_forms

Beyond Likert scales: how we made boring form-filling more fun

Read how the team at JotForm made their forms more fun to use.

Read it

C430_cssart

picCSSel Art

A tool to create CSS pixel art made by Kushagra Gour.

Check it out

C430_ghost

Ghost Mouse

A fantastic demo by Liam Egan where a blob like element moves with the mouse/finger.

Check it out

C430_brads

Brad’s Homelab

Brad Fitzpatrick’s home lab setup for highly-available internet.

Check it out

C430_clearfix

Clearfix: A Lesson in Web Development Evolution

Jason Hoffman takes a look at the history of the famous CSS clearfix hack.

Read it

C430_svgterm

termtosvg

A Linux terminal recorder written in Python that renders your command line sessions as standalone SVG animations.

Check it out

C430_font

Free Font: Akrotiri

A playful rounded font made by Ilya Zakharov.

Get it

Collective #430 was written by Pedro Botelho and published on Codrops.

Read more: tympanus.net

No Lies: How to Get Content Marketing Right in E-Commerce

get-content-marketing-right-ecommerceContent marketing is a great, wonderful, powerful way to earn attention and loyalty online … but much of what the industry talks about comes from a B2B perspective.

A lot of the rules change when you move to the B2C sector, and still more change when you talk about businesses operating on the online marketplace.

I’m not here to tell you that everything you learned about content marketing is a lie and you need to ditch everything. I am here to offer a few options that will help you shake things up and make waves in the e-commerce sector.

Let’s get started.

1. Interactive content

One advantage in-store shopping still has over the online experience is, in most cases, interactivity. Shopping in person can be a more engaging experience, and many still find it relatively fun.

E-commerce retailers can change up this dynamic – and you can stand out from your online competitors – by investing in interactive content.

Take the cosmetics brand Sephora, which markets itself using the Sephora Virtual Artist app. Users can “apply” makeup to get an idea of what would look good on them. While the app isn’t a perfect substitute, it can help users decide if the colors are a good fit for them.

sephora-virtual-artist-app

Interactive content isn’t limited to fashion brands. The never-ending love of personality quizzes, the usefulness of web apps and calculators, and the cool engagement with 3D videos are options for nearly any e-commerce brand with an appropriately creative marketing approach.

Interactive content can stand out more and be more memorable than static content. Interactive video ads, for example, boost viewing time by 47%.

Interactive #video ads boost viewing time by 47% via @IPGLAB @TremorVideoDSP. #interactivecontentClick To Tweet

To incorporate and promote your interactive content: 

Identify the problems people are looking to solve which are most closely associated with your brand and your products.
Brainstorm interactive content that will help them solve those problems, including both mobile and web apps, video, quizzes, calculators, and others.
Identify keywords associated not only with the problem users are trying to solve, but the interactivity of your solution.
Create a dedicated page for your interactive content.
Put a call to action in your site navigation to your interactive content.
Place a call to action to your interactive content from related product pages, blog posts, and other content throughout your site.
Reach out to influencers who would take interest in the interactive content, and pin it to your social media platforms.

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT: Interactive Content: The Good, Bad, and Wicked Cool Quizzes and Games
2. Lifestyle storytelling

Much of content marketing is focused on the how-to blog post format because it works well. But this approach is often over-emphasized because it’s produced by content marketing agencies that exist in the B2B sector, where a how-to approach is most effective.

For many brands in the consumer market, especially in e-commerce, one important alternative is to tell stories that sell your audience on the lifestyle of your brand.

Take the outdoor lifestyle brand YETI. There’s no shortage of brands selling coolers, travel bags, and related accessories on the market, so YETI differentiated itself by producing high-quality stories, documentary-like videos of people living the outdoor lifestyle that sell the emotional appeal of the brand. Its YouTube videos regularly receive tens or hundreds of thousands of views, with high like-to-dislike ratios.

To incorporate more storytelling:

Interview and spotlight extraordinary people who embody the kind of person your product helps your consumers become.
Identify the emotional core of every story, putting the focus on what struggles were faced and how they changed the person in question.
Encourage customers to share their stories with contests or reach out to satisfied customers to learn more about their story.
Tell your own story, particularly if it relates to the core message of your brand and the impact you expect it to have on your customers.

Storytelling is very powerful, and most people want to see themselves as the hero in their own story. Associating your brand with these kinds of stories does a lot for building brand image, loyalty, and appeal.

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT:

How REI Is Unlocking the Power of Long-Form Video
How to Differentiate Content in a Crowded Field [Example from Adidas]

3. Stance-taking

Getting involved in politics in 2018 is, shall we say, a bit risky? At the same time, the politicization of nearly everything also means that people react much more strongly, good or bad, to brands that take a political stance.

This isn’t always a good idea, especially for brands that don’t want their image to be closely connected to a political cause, but there’s no denying that it works in the right situations.

Setting aside the obvious example of Tesla, look at the environmentally responsible outdoor apparel brand Patagonia and its blog The Cleanest Line. The risk-taking strategy has paid off. Its Instagram post declaring that “The President Stole Your Land” has received over 200,000 “likes” and a related 360-degree interactive video experience, This is Bears Ears (a national monument), has been well received by many (and there’s been some negative reaction too).

patagonia-stance-taking-example

Patagonia’s pledge to donate Black Friday sales resulted in $10 million for environmental groups, which almost certainly created some loyal customers and added to the over 3 million followers of its Instagram account.

If a cause is appropriate for your brand to support, it’s worth weighing the potential alienation of some customers against the attention and loyalty you could earn in return.

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT: Purpose-Driven Content Marketing: Brands That Give and Get
4. Email content

A lot of content marketing strategy lessons revolve around gaining visibility, with the goal of converting that traction into email leads or buyers. But customer retention is arguably a far more important goal for online retailers because a one-time sale likely doesn’t result in a big enough return.

In the B2B industry or some B2C, customer retention isn’t as important to or handled by content marketers. Thus, much of the talk about email isn’t the most effective for online retailers.

An email field should absolutely be a part of your cart checkout process, with a check mark option to receive special deals.

An #email field should be part of your cart checkout process for buyers to opt in to #content. @Manish_AnalystClick To Tweet

To incorporate more effective email marketing:

Send abandoned cart emails. If a would-be customer fails the checkout process, send an email reminder about the abandoned cart and give an option to explain why it was abandoned if the act was intentional.
Send product recommendations based on previous purchases. Options such as “people who bought this also bought this,” or reminders to repurchase products that periodically need to be replaced can be effective. Avoid recommending a direct replacement for an item previously purchased that isn’t periodically replaced.
Send promotional emails for on-sale items, especially if those items are a good match for the recipient’s buying history.

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT:

8 Copywriting Techniques to Boost Email Conversions
How to Deliver Emails That Will Increase Reach, Impact, and Subscriber Satisfaction

Closing advice

If you can find one common thread in the above recommendations, it’s probably this: Retail is far more about experience and identity than it is about practical advice.

#Retail is far more about experience & identity than it is about practical advice, says @Manish_Analyst.Click To Tweet

The traditional approach to content marketing – identifying problems associated with your core products and producing content that helps people solve those problems – still can be valuable for e-commerce brands. If it is working for you, I certainly wouldn’t recommend stopping.

That said, in general, e-commerce brands heavily rely on style and lifestyle appeal. Investing in that doesn’t mean ditching your more practical, use-focused content, but it does mean investing more in storytelling and creating memorable experiences.

Make that central to your brand and you will be miles ahead of most online-based brands.

HANDPICKED RELATED CONTENT: The Art of the Cart: How Retail Brands Can Cash in on Content Marketing

Selling products or services on your website? It’s time to buy online too. Register for Content Marketing World (use BLOG100 to save $100) and then get insight on how to better your sales with content marketing from over 100 presenters Sept. 4-7. And don’t miss registering for the retail/e-commerce industry lab on Sept. 7.

Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

The post No Lies: How to Get Content Marketing Right in E-Commerce appeared first on Content Marketing Institute.

Read more: contentmarketinginstitute.com

Affiliate_Marketing_How_To_Maximize_Your_Income

Affiliate Marketing How To Maximize Your Income

Before you get started on your new affiliate marketing career, use this affiliate marketing how to. Consider this your affiliate marketing 101 course. Obviously, I can’t possibly cover every aspect of this exciting career, but I can give you enough of the basics so that you have a solid foundation on which to build.

The first thing you need to remember is that you are building a business. Like any business it will take some time, commitment, and knowledge in order to grow and be successful. Don’t ever let someone convince you that you can be successful without working at it or that you can start making a six figure income in just a few months. You can make a six figure income but it will take some time to grow your business to that point, especially if you’ve never done this before.

Here is a list of the basic steps you will need to follow to get started:

1. Sign up to become an affiliate. This is free to do and there are many places you can sign up. Most companies have an affiliate program. You can choose to promote physical items that need to be shipped or you may prefer to promote digital products that can be downloaded instantly. Just decide what types of products or services you’d like to promote and do a search for companies that offer affiliate programs for those products.

2. Decide how you want to drive traffic to your website. This is the only way you’ll ever make any money, you will need an ongoing stream of qualified visitors to your website. It will take a little time to get that traffic. Exactly how long will depend largely on the traffic generating methods you choose.

For example, if you choose the free methods such as article marketing ( a method where you write an article about your product or service that offers useful information. You then submit that article to an article directory which will publish your article for free. When someone does an online search using the keywords you’ve used in your article, they will be directed to your article. Once they’ve read your article they can click on the link at the bottom and be taken to your website) it will take a little longer but it is free and once you’ve got the traffic it will take very little additional effort to keep it.

If you choose to use Pay Per Click or PPC for your traffic you will usually get more traffic more quickly, but only if you know how to do it. PPC actually has a pretty steep learning curve and since you are paying to place an ad you are paying the whole time you are learning. It can get a little costly.

3. Build a list. The sad fact of the matter is that up to 98% of the visitors to your website won’t make a purchase, and they won’t ever be back. If you can capture their contact information on that first visit, you can keep in touch with them and hopefully at some point convert them into a paying customer.

To build your list you need to entice them to opt-in to your email list. This simply means that they sign up and agree to receive emails from you. That way you don’t have to worry about spam complaints. This method can be totally automated by using an autoresponder service. With the service you can simply pre-load a series of email messages that will go out one after the other over whatever time period you choose. This way you can have multiple contacts with your visitors and build trust and rapport with them.

Don’t waste another day. Use this affiliate marketing how to today and start your own enormously successful affiliate marketing business. You’ll really be glad you did!