How to Use Marketing Data to Differentiate Yourself & Beat Competitors

Kelly Shelton

January 14, 2021

We don’t need to tell you the importance of differentiating your brand from competitors on ecommerce. More competitors are entering the marketplace each day—Amazon is home to 2.3 million active sellers and Walmart boasted a 97% digital sales growth in Q2 of 2020. If brands aren’t actively focusing on differentiating themselves, they’ll quickly drown in the sea of competitors that are.

The key to differentiating yourself is simple: Data. But just because it’s simple doesn’t mean it’s easy to implement. It’s challenging to access the data that tells you how to set yourself apart. It’s even more challenging to analyze that data. And mastering the plethora of marketing tools and channels that help you adjust your strategy based on the data you’ve analyzed? That’s nearly impossible for brands to do on their own because of the myriad marketplaces, platforms, and softwares they use to manage it all.

Let’s talk about why data is crucial in setting yourself apart in ecommerce and how you can leverage its power to overcome the most common challenges ecommerce marketers face when trying to differentiate themselves from competitors.

Why data is the single most important factor in differentiating your brand

At Pattern, we’re data fanatics—and for a good reason. For brands selling on ecommerce, data-driven strategy is the key distinguishing factor between mediocre performance and phenomenal success. Brands that use data make more money and experience significantly more growth and opportunities. It’s as simple as that.

Here’s a few things data can help you do:

  • Data helps you understand your customers, where they’re buying from, their age group, their interests, and countless other details that help you deliver the experience that’s going to keep them coming back for more.
  • Data helps you understand your campaigns, how they’re performing, and how you can optimize those campaigns to reach your target audience and spend your dollars more effectively.
  • Data helps you understand conversion and retention, helping you maximize your ad dollars, convert at a higher rate, and improve your customer satisfaction.

When you use data to its full potential, your business is more efficient and effective. You spend less and get more, paying less in advertising and awareness per sale. You may be tempted to think that you can’t afford to incorporate data into your strategy, but the reality is that you can’t afford not to. Data gives you vision, perspective, opportunity, efficiency, and scalability—factors that together lead to more sales, stickier sales, better retention, cross-selling, and, at the end of the day, better margins.

How to overcome the common challenges of incorporating data into your marketing strategy

The first challenge marketers face with data is accessing it in the first place, especially considering that Amazon notoriously keeps data close to its chest. You may know how your brand and products fare on Amazon, but little about marketplace trends as a whole.

This is where it can be helpful to work with a partner. Pattern is the 5th largest seller on Amazon, and the sheer quantity of products we sell gives us valuable insights for our partners to apply. We also rely on Predict, our all-in-one ecommerce tracking tool that pulls live data from over 4,000 ecommerce sites each day. Predict helps brands make data-backed decisions when it comes to product listings, advertising, SEO optimization, keyword selection, and much more.

It can also be difficult to know how to interpret and apply data once you’ve accessed it. Even the best marketers can’t possibly know all of the marketing tools and platforms, much less be proficient in them. Processing and analyzing the near-limitless data and information isn’t just a full-time job—it’s a full-time job for a team. This is where Pattern comes in. And the best part? Our team of specialists, who are experts in marketing tools, don’t cost you a dime when you partner with us for free.

Integrating data tells the whole story

Amazon data is certainly insightful, but it doesn’t tell the whole story. Data wields the most power when it’s integrated from across different platforms and channels, including marketplaces, search engines, and social media. Google Analytics, Google Search Console, and Facebook Business Manager are all powerful tools that are too frequently ignored. Using these tools along with the data from Amazon gives you a more complete picture of how your brand is performing and what messages resonate with your customers.

In practice, what does it look like to integrate data? A brand might see, for example, Amazon search trends mirrored on other platforms, like Google, and know that the challenge they’re facing is universal, not platform-specific. They can then set goals to tackle that challenge from all angles. Another brand may notice that a specific ad is overperforming on Facebook, and they can then take that ad’s messaging and imagery and implement it in their Amazon product listing. Pattern has seen amazing results in implementing these strategies.

Building your brand with data

Building your brand is an oft-overlooked aspect of differentiating your product from competitors. Brands often make the mistake of only focusing on bottom-of-the-funnel marketing, which leads to conversion, while largely forgetting about top-of-the-funnel marketing, which leads to awareness.

Even though conversion is the quickest and easiest result to see, building awareness is just as important. People don’t just buy products anymore—they buy experiences. They want to buy these experiences from brands that they trust, and trust is preceded by familiarity. Brand building drives sales because, without it, people aren’t aware of a brand, much less trusting of it. When people trust a brand, they’re more likely to search for it organically and recommend it to their friends.

Like with all ecommerce marketing decisions, how to build your brand can and should be driven by data. Data can tell you about brand awareness and help you identify the awareness gaps your marketing strategies should be aiming to fill. Like we’ve mentioned before, data can also help you understand your customers and know how to effectively market your product to them.

When you’re building your brand, focus on what your consumers value about your brand and your product. One way we use data in this process is by creating word clouds out of product reviews and taking note of the most commonly praised features. Advertise these features front-and-center in your ads and product description pages.

At Pattern, we’re professionals at addressing the top of the funnel. Our experienced writers, advertisers, and creative team see the bigger picture and know how to manage every aspect of advertising across the funnel. We focus on long-term success, not quick wins, and prioritize sustainability and growth. We want our partners to thrive and grow for years to come, which wouldn’t be possible without advertising to customers at every step in their journey.

What now?

Data is the beginning, middle, and end of a successful ecommerce strategy. If you’re not making marketing decisions based on data, your brand is likely performing below its potential. But the good news is that it’s never too late to incorporate more data-driven decisions into your strategy and start reaping the rewards.

Are you ready to differentiate your brand from competitors by leveraging the power of data? That’s Pattern’s specialty, and we’re here to help. Our revolutionary software and specialized teams have the tools and expertise to help you leave your competitors in the dust. Fill out the form below to book a free consultation and get a free demo of our Predict software.

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Sept 27, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 27th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon drives renewable energy push with 71 new projects Amazon is planning to add 2.7 gigawatts of clean energy capacity through a couple of new projects as the company attempts to use 100% renewable energy by 2025. The ecommerce business will soon have a total of 329 renewable energy projects, generating 50,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy, which is equivalent to powering 4.6 million US homes every year. [Read more on Reuters](https://www.reuters.com/business/sustainable-business/amazon-drives-renewable-energy-push-with-71-new-projects-2022-09-21/) Amazon launches Prime Early Access Sale Amazon is launching a new 2-day shopping event for its Prime members only, beginning on the 11th of October. Across 15 countries, Prime customers will have access to the shopping event, with thousands of deals on offer globall, ranging from fashion to electronics to essentials. The event has the purpose of giving Prime users the chance to spread the cost of items over the winter months, 6 weeks ahead of Black Friday. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/26/prime-early-access-sale/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Shopify unveils new localisation tool Shopify is launching a new localisation tool, called Translate & Adapt, which works with Shopify Markets to offer localisation for sellers who are looking to expand into new markets. The tool translates a user’s online store into different languages, including product pages and information pages. Merchants are also able to create different shipping terms for each market using the new tool, which allows international expansion and offers a more localised consumer experience, unveiling new potential. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/shopify-launches-new-localisation-tool/) Etsy is set to invest hundreds of millions into its marketing platform Etsy CEO claims that the company is on route to spend more than $570 million USD on marketing this year. Even during a time of macroeconomic pressure, inflation and rising interest rates, the company is preparing itself and its sellers for the upcoming holiday season and is focused on retaining interest from buyers. [Read more on Yahoo News](https://uk.news.yahoo.com/etsy-600-million-on-marketing-ceo-154054219.html) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Meta looks to cut costs by 10% in the coming months Meta employees are facing job redundancies as the company plans to cut its costs by 10% over the next few months. Meta reported a 22% YoY increase in costs and expenses, totalling over $20 billion USD. The cuts are expected to come in the form of job redundancies as a result of department reorganisations rather than formal layoffs. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/22/meta-to-slash-costs-by-10-over-coming-months/) DHL teams up with Quadient to offer smart locker deliveries in the UK DHL and tech company, Quadient, have partnered to offer smart lockers parcel pick-up throughout the UK. The new contactless, secure locker stations will give recipients more choice and flexibility to receive their parcels at a time and location best suited to them. The partnership plans to install 500 locker stations across the country by the end of 2022. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/21/dhl-partners-with-quadient-to-offer-smart-locker-delivery/) The online fashion market is set to be worth nearly $170 billion USD in 2025 The European online fashion retail market is set to grow 50% by 2025, with an online turnover of $170 billion USD, which is 33% of the retail branch’s total. Cross-border marketplaces prove to be the largest drivers of this growth, with online websites and apps like Vinted largely pushing the market’s online growth. Zalando recently became the largest cross-border fashion retailer/marketplace, responsible for 11.7% of the online market’s share. [Read more on Ecommerce News](https://ecommercenews.eu/online-fashion-market-worth-e175-billion-in-2025/)
Sept 20, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 20th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon to raise pay and add extra work benefits for delivery drivers Following the rise in fuel prices and protests by Amazon workers, the ecommerce giant is raising its delivery drivers’ pay and adding more work benefits. Amazon has mentioned that it will be investing $450 million into rate increases along with an education program and a Delivery Service Partners program. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/14/amazon-to-raise-delivery-drivers-pay-and-add-more-work-benefits/) Amazon announces it will give away shipping software to merchants at no cost Amazon has recently announced that it will be giving ecommerce merchants free software to manage shopper orders on and off its platform as it extends its reach. The ecommerce giant will be ending monthly costs for sellers using Veeqo, a shipping software it recently acquired and instead offer to them a new, free shipping software. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/16/amazon-to-give-away-shipping-software-to-merchants/) --- Other Marketplace News --- Walmart unveils new virtual fitting rooms In an effort to drive clothing sales, Walmart has launched virtual fitting rooms while competitors reduce spending amid the cost of living crisis. The virtual try-on tool can be used by Walmart customers to virtually measure the clothing items and see how the products would look on them. Shoppers will now be able to see how over 270,000 clothing items on Walmart’s ecommerce site would look on their bodies. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/15/walmart-launches-virtual-fitting-rooms-to-drive-clothing-sales/?utmsource=Retail+Gazette+Subscribers&utmcampaign=2da7f0f8f8-EMAILCAMPAIGN202209150742&utmmedium=email&utmterm=0d23e2768b6-2da7f0f8f8-61040615) THG slashes sales and profit expectations The Hut Group has slashed its forecasts for 2022 as rising interest rates, inflation and energy costs take a toll on consumers. Previously, THG estimated its sales growth to be between 22-25% but after a recent evaluation, has lowered this prediction to between 10-15%. Initial predictions did not take into account the negative effects of ceasing sales in Russia and Ukraine along with the impact that the cost-of-living has had on consumer spending. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/15/thg-slashes-forecast-as-cost-of-living-crisis-hits-consumers-wallets/) --- Other Ecommerce News --- DHL and Post Office team up to provide click and collect services Through a partnership between delivery company, DHL and Post Office, a new click and collect service is to be tested at Post Offices before rolling out to over 1000 branches across the UK. Online shoppers will now have the option of choosing their local Post Office as a collection point, and DHL will fulfil the delivery aspect, opening up networks for both parties. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/14/post-office-partners-with-dhl-express-to-provide-click-and-collect-services/) US consumer watchdog plans to further regulate the BNPL sector The US Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has raised concerns regarding the collection of consumer data and the fast-growing nature of the BNPL sector, which includes companies such as Affirm and Klarna. The CFPB is worried that these companies could be negatively impacting consumers’ financial health and aims to put better regulations in place to ensure consumers are safe and empowered. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/16/us-consumer-watchdog-to-start-regulating-bnpl-sector/) Japanese ecommerce market estimated to grow by 6.9% in 2022 The ecommerce market in Japan, largely dominated by domestic online retailers including Reakuten and Mercari, is set to reach $194.3 billion USD in 2022, after seeing an annual compound growth rate of 5.2% between 2018 and 2021. This makes Japan the fourth leading ecommerce market globally, following China, the US, and the UK. [Read more on Charged Retail](https://www.chargedretail.co.uk/2022/09/13/japan-ecommerce-market-to-grow-by-6-9-in-2022/) Ecommerce brands are spending more on TikTok ads TikTok may soon be surpassing Facebook and Google as the most lucrative advertising channel, with ecommerce brands spending 60% more on TikTok ads in Q2. Facebook is still ahead as the top choice for ecommerce advertisers but only grew by 5.6% from Q1, while Google grew 20.5% in Q2, and Snap declined 10.8% in Q2. [Read more on SearchEngineLand](https://searchengineland.com/ecommerce-brands-spent-60-more-on-tiktok-ads-in-q2-387876)
Sept 13, 2022

Global Ecommerce Weekly News: 13th September 2022

Get up to date with this week's ecommerce headlines from around the globe. --- Amazon News --- Amazon scales back on US warehouse facilities Amazon is shutting down two facilities with 300 employees, discarding plans for 42 facilities, and delaying plans to open a further 21 buildings across the US. The ecommerce giant is scaling back on hiring as well as the expansion of its vast delivery network, as it was left with an excess of space following its rapid expansion during the pandemic. [Read more on Business Insider](https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-closes-2-facilities-scraps-plans-42-new-buildings-report-2022-9?r=US&IR=T) --- Other Marketplace News --- JD.com is ‘betting’ on ecommerce grocery market Amidst a slowing economy and a decline in ecommerce, Chinese ecommerce giant JD.com has increased its urgency to seek new growth engines. The company is looking to boost its online grocery business through offline partnerships and expansion into lower-tier cities, where it may be able to unleash more consumption power. [Read more on The Star](https://www.thestar.com.my/tech/tech-news/2022/09/08/chinese-ecommerce-giant-jdcom-bets-big-on-online-grocery-lower-tier-markets-amid-slowing-economy) Shopee shuts operations in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico Sea’s ecommerce arm, Shopee, has shut local operations in some LATAM countries but will continue to maintain cross-border operations in a few markets. Latin America is Sea’s most important region following South-east Asia, accounting for close to 19% of its revenue in 2021. The move away from these countries is largely due to increased levels of macro uncertainty and rising interest and inflation rates, and rather putting a focus on its core operations. [Read more on Straits Times](https://www.straitstimes.com/business/companies-markets/seas-shopee-shuts-operations-in-argentina-chile-colombia-mexico-sources) --- Other Ecommerce News --- Instagram scales back in-stream shopping elements Instagram is re-examining its approach as it hasn’t been able to make ‘fetch’ happen. ‘Fetch’ in this context being the online shopping trends which have become all-consuming in China, and what Western social platforms have been hoping to add into their apps to make them more addictive and revenue-generating. Consumers have not been swayed by the latest shopping tools on TikTok and Instagram, leading to Instagram scaling back its in-stream shopping program. [Read more on SocialMediaToday](https://www.socialmediatoday.com/news/instagram-scales-back-in-stream-shopping-elements-as-it-re-examines-its-app/631276/) FedEx Express supporting the growth of cross border ecommerce FedEx express has expanded its international commerce shipping service to four more markets across the Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa (AMEA) region in an effort to support the strong development of ecommerce in this region. Three of the fastest growing markets, the Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam are leading Southeast Asia’s ecommerce sales, which is set to reach $100 billion by 2023. [Read more on Post & Parcel](https://postandparcel.info/149889/news/e-commerce/fedex-express-supports-the-growth-of-cross-border-e-commerce-within-the-amea-region/) India ramps up hiring as companies prepare for shoppers Ecommerce companies are getting ready for the festive season by rapidly expanding their temporary workforce. As ecommerce in India grows, the country is predicted to have 372 million online shoppers by the end of 2022. The festive season this year, running from October to December, is expected to see a two-fold increase in logistics and delivery alone. During this period, companies are predicted to add 20% more to their existing workforce base, with a 8-10% higher pay scale compared to last year. [Read more on Business Insider India](https://www.businessinsider.in/business/ecommerce/news/the-great-indian-festival-of-hiring-e-commerce-companies-gear-up-for-indias-shoppers/articleshow/94000346.cms)