Headed into 2021, the ecommerce playing field is more level than ever. Small and medium businesses are now responsible for more than half of Amazon sales, marking a 30% increase in the last decade, and Amazon recently announced a $30 billion investment in small sellers.
Any company with a quality product—whether that company has 5 employees or 5,000—can now find success in online marketplaces as long as they pay attention to one crucial ingredient: branding. By forming a clear, consistent brand identity and capitalizing on all branding opportunities, both small and large businesses can stand a step above competitors and ultimately increase conversion.
A company’s brand is how consumers perceive the company or product. Shaping this perception positively is the goal of ecommerce branding. Your logo, typography, imagery, colors, packaging, social media presence, messaging, and customer service all influence your company’s identity. It’s this identity that earns your brand loyal, lifelong customers—or, if done wrong, turns customers away.
Every time a potential customer interacts with your brand, whether by seeing your product online or on a shelf at the store, you’re making an impression. What kind of impression do you want to make when someone sees your product? What important company values do you want to communicate? What vibe do you want shoppers to feel when they visit your website or use your product? These are all questions your branding strategy should answer.
Solidying your identity across platforms, elements, and products helps consumers understand your brand no matter where they find it. This builds better brand recognition and more trust in your offering.
Consistency is the key to successful branding. It matters less what your branding looks like and more that you have a clear, unique brand identity that’s consistent across all platforms, marketplaces, and social media channels. Don’t make the mistake of creating one brand identity in retail stores, a different one on social media, another in online marketplaces, and yet another on your company website. When consumers can’t grasp your brand identity clearly and recognize it instantly, they’re less likely to trust your brand, buy your products, and stick with your organization over time.
Even well-established companies with a clear style and brand struggle to consistently communicate their identity on ecommerce. These brands may have talented creative teams that design compelling content for displays in brick-and-mortar stores or their own company websites. But translating these strategies to Amazon and other online marketplaces requires time and resources that many brands lack, making it more difficult than it needs to convert on ecommerce.
Just like your overall creative strategy should be consistent from platform to platform, your creative elements should also be consistent with each other. Your brand identity, logo, packaging, and design should all complement each other. For example, if your product itself is sleek and modern, your logo and font choice should reflect that style. If your focus is environmental sustainability, you probably don’t want to package your product in copious amounts of plastic. If your brand vibe is upbeat and fun, it would make sense to use vibrant colors in your advertising and social media posts.
And finally, you should have continuity and consistency between your distinct products. Even if you sell a wide range of goods, they should all be connected in your product family in a way that makes sense to consumers. Let your branding show your pride for each of your related products and your company.
Once you’ve nailed down your consistent brand, maximize every possible opportunity to communicate it with customers on ecommerce. Fill every image slot on your product listing page and optimize below-the-fold and additional content. Use as much real estate as the platform offers you. Product pages should be filled from top to bottom with consistent brand content. Make sure your logo is present, whether on your product itself or the product packaging, so consumers always know the product is coming from you.
Because of Pattern’s love for data, we see the difference it makes when our partners start to communicate a clear, consistent brand identity on ecommerce. We’ve seen significant increases in conversion for both well-established companies and ecommerce newcomers when they start implementing effective branding online. Why? Because when it’s clear you know who you are, customers believe in your brand and feel more safe and secure investing in your products.
Take a second to imagine your shopping experience as a consumer at a retail store. How do you decide which product to buy when you’re presented with several options? You likely first gravitate toward a product based on its packaging and presentation. You might then pick it up to feel its weight, read about its ingredients on the label, and compare its features to similar options on the shelf.
All of these factors are important in helping you—and all consumers—understand the brand and make a final purchasing decision. The goal of creative content on ecommerce is to use visual elements to recreate this brick-and-mortar experience online. Your product listings, images, videos, and descriptions should visually communicate the shopping experience to consumers and tell them as much about your product as they’d know if they could personally hold and examine it.
Your brand may be able to recreate the shopping experience and answer consumers’ questions simply by optimizing the basics of your product listing, like the image stack and product description. But if you want to go above and beyond to increase your conversion and strengthen your brand identity, there are several additional tactics you can try:
When you’re working to take your creative strategy to the next level, remember to keep it fresh and frequently update your ad campaigns, promos, and visual communication (while, of course, staying consistent with your brand like we’ve discussed previously.)
Need help establishing your brand on ecommerce? That’s our specialty. We’re eager to work with you to create your brand identity or translate your established brand to ecommerce, all at no cost to you. Email email@example.com for a free consultation or request a demo today.
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Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces.
Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.
So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.
Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products.
An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.
An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.
Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.
At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services.
It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.
It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.
The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.
Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces.
With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.
Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.