The Secret to Ecommerce Branding to Stand Out From Competition

Elyse Taylor

February 17, 2021

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.

The basics of branding for ecommerce

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.

Consistent branding makes a difference

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.

Across Platforms

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.

Across Elements

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.

Across Products

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.

Use creative content to innovate and strengthen your brand

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:

  • **Video. **Video is a highly underutilized area of ecommerce. Video is as close as consumers can get to seeing and handling a product without actually shopping in-person, which is a relevant consideration in the post-COVID world. One short clip of video can make your product come alive and communicate more than all 7 photos in your image stack. And if competitors aren’t doing video, your product becomes the only listing consumers interact with before making a decision, making you more trustworthy and more likely to win the buyer.
  • **Amazon Live events. **Amazon Live is an interactive streaming feed for brands to showcase their products to customers. This is a great opportunity for brands to connect with their customers, tell their brand story, and highlight their products. At Pattern, we’ve seen great success for Amazon Live events. After an Amazon Live event for the baby monitor brand Owlet, Pattern observed a 9-16% increase in sales.
  • **Seasonal promotions. **Just like retail stores revamp their window displays for each season, it’s not a bad idea for online sellers to make seasonal promotions for ecommerce. If you sell health supplements, for example, you may rework your creative content for the back-to-school season to focus on supplements that improve immune system function.
  • **A+ Content. **Amazon’s A+ Content, which was previously known as Enhanced Brand Content, is a tool that allows you to fill your product listings with visually-rich content like images, custom text placement, and diagrams. Using A+ Content is one of the most straightforward ways to show off your brand identity in every product listing. According to Amazon, adding this free feature to your listings can increase sales by an average of 3% to 10%.

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 for a free consultation or request a demo today.

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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]( 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]( --- 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]( 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]( --- 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]( 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]( 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](
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]( 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]( --- 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]( 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]( --- 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]( 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]( 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]( 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](
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]( --- Other Marketplace News --- is ‘betting’ on ecommerce grocery market Amidst a slowing economy and a decline in ecommerce, Chinese ecommerce giant 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]( 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]( --- 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]( 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]( 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](