Every good brand needs to have an online presence. Brands with well-designed websites are considered far more credible than those without.
Populating your website with useful content that uses the right keywords allows you to appear on search engines, but what comes next? After optimizing your website content for SEO, it’s time to create campaigns that can reach customers wherever they are.
When it comes to connecting with customers online, nothing’s better than adding email marketing into the mix. 72% of US adults prefer companies to communicate with them through email, and it remains the most popular choice across age demographics. It even holds its own against traditional media which usually outperforms other digital channels.
Formulating a good email campaign, or improving on your current one doesn’t need to be complicated. You just need to keep these four tips in mind:
1. Segment your email lists.
To avoid being marked as spam, make the first step toward email personalization with list segmentation.
Personalization can deliver a 5 to 15% increase in revenue and a 10 to 30% increase in marketing spend efficiency.
Segmentation refers to the practice of separating subscribers within email lists according to key audience demographics. This way, subscribers receive a more tailored email marketing experience, in contrast to a generic email blast with singular messaging. Some common segments you can use are:
- Age range
- Email engagement
- Purchase history
- Website behavior
Segmenting email lists and tailoring your messages according to user behavior or their purchase history increases the likelihood that your subscribers will open your emails. Subscribers will likely click the CTA in the email and make a purchase if the offers are relevant to them, thereby increasing your click-to-open rates. When you improve email engagement, chances are you drive your email marketing revenue as well.
Here’s a good example of behavior-based list segmentation: Say you’re the CMO of an ecommerce fashion store. You can tell your email marketing team to segment subscribers by reviewing their purchase histories to see what type of products they’re usually interested in. Your email marketing team can then include offers for similar products in your promotional emails.
2. Show your subscribers what they expect to see.
There are some brands that make the mistake of promising something grand in the subject line of an email and not fulfilling this promise in the body of the email.
This is a bad email marketing habit that can do significant harm to your revenue targets. It can lead to subscribers getting annoyed and unsubscribing from your list.
The truth is, writing a punchy, clickbaity subject line can improve your open rates. But if your goal is to drive revenue, your email should be optimized so that subscribers are encouraged to click on the CTA within the email.
Don’t make promises you can’t keep. Instead of relying just on attractive “email power words,” maximize your use of these words by taking note of these tips:
- When using email marketing software, use personalization tags to address subscribers by name. Include your subscriber’s first name in the subject line, and greet them in the body of the email (Hi there, James!)
- Craft email lines based on location, purchase history, or even occasion—hence why proper segmentation is integral.
- Build rapport with the right pronouns. Use “you” and its variants to underscore the personal communication aspect of your emails.
- Play on urgency and excitement, but be honest about it. This works especially well when combined with power words like “special,” “new,” “storewide sale,” “event,” and “offer.”
The more you align your subject lines with the content you offer in the body of your email, the more likely your subscribers will make a purchase.
3. Engaging content makes a world of difference.
The main purpose of email marketing is to promote your business’ products or services. The two email marketing metrics that indicate how successful your promotion are click-through rate and click-to-open rate.
According to email marketing benchmarks for 2019, the average click-through rate is 2.69%. Meanwhile, the average click-to-open rate is 14.10%. Developing genuine connections with your subscribers is an excellent way to improve these engagement metrics. Think about what types of content will make your subscribers trust your brand?
- Authentic content. Be clear about what your company’s vision and goals are. Reflect this in your branding.
- Transparent content. Let your customers know where their money is going and how you plan to use their information—especially in this data-sensitive time.
- Consistent content. Have a set of guidelines for your brand presentation and tone. Being consistent in all aspects of your email messaging makes it easier for subscribers to recall your brand.
Here’s how to ensure that your emails are consistent.
- Images and Layout – Use colors and imagery that showcase your company’s branding standards. Include your logo within the layout in a visible but unobtrusive area. For photos, use lifestyle shots that showcase real people using your products and services as much as possible.
- Copy – Don’t be condescending. Keep text readable, whether someone views your email on mobile or desktop. Organize information hierarchically, with important information kept at the top in a larger size, and explain in more detail afterward.
4. Test everything.
It’s difficult to get everything right the first time. However, with A/B testing you can learn what works and take your ROI to the next level.
A/B testing can improve ROI because it enables you to identify what works best for each specific situation.
Sending two different variations of the same email with slight changes can give you concrete data on which elements get desired results and which ones don’t.
The great thing about A/B testing is that you can do it for every element of your emails such as the subject line, layout, CTAs, copy, and more.
A/B testing is extremely important for optimizing your CTAs since they direct subscribers to take action and convert. Here are some tips on how you can optimize your CTA designs:
- Use a button. Everyone instinctively knows buttons are where you click. Deviating from this will only cause confusion.
- Use the right colors—but test multiple ones. Pick one that doesn’t clash with the color of the text within it.
- Think about where to place them. You can put it above the fold, on the right-hand side, at the bottom, or more.
- Don’t crowd them. They need to be visible.
Building the perfect email marketing campaign can be exhausting work, especially if you seek to perfect every detail. However, as each element in a well-designed email works together to attract more subscribers to click, improving one part can make a difference to the whole.
There are many ways to improve email marketing ROI. Segmenting your email lists can decrease your spam rate, improve open rates, and lower bounce rates. Tweaking your subject lines can improve both open and click-through rates. Putting more thought into organizing your content can massively impact click-through and click-to-open rate. And A/B testing may be the thread that ties it all together.
Benchmarks are there to assess marketing performance. They’re an opportunity to improve your relationship with email subscribers. Don’t take this for granted: after all, they could be your next customers.
There is no way to overstate the importance of providing quality content that satisfies the needs that drive people to search the internet. Once a user has arrived on your landing page, it is the quality of your content that will cause them to stay, explore, return, and share via backlinks and social media.
While no one knows better than you what kind of content can offer value to your target audience, here are a few of our top tips to help as you develop your 2020 content strategy.
Focus on Value
If you don’t read any further, make sure you focus on the value your content can provide the user. This is simple: did you answer their question? Does your content match the user’s intent? With online attention spans shrinking each year, attracting -and retaining- a prospect’s attention is more competitive than ever. hence why the focus above everything else is to offer them value through quality content.
The ROI of Quality Content
But creating quality content is hard work and time consuming. Yes – but anything worthwhile requires effort!
Besides, the business case is there – content marketing earns 3x the leads compared to paid search marketing. Good content that delivers value is the foundation of good SEO and even e-commerce sites should have a blog
. Not to mention if your content provides enough value it sells itself – meaning your team won’t need to spend time doing backlink outreach. Win-win!
Leverage your authority
As the subject matter expert in your niche, use your knowledge to guide your content strategy by answering questions and deliver value. What does your business do better than anyone else? What questions do your customers ask consistently? What does Google Analytics tell you your visitors are reading about? Answering questions enhances your authority, credibility and trust which gets prospects closer to a sale or other conversion.
Consider your medium
Match content to your audience’s attention span and intent. If you’re writing content for a product page, don’t write a blog. If you’re creating a blog, don’t oversell – just link to a relevant product or service. On social media, don’t create one post and send the same post to all platforms. The more customization the more likely you will get the engagement and desired action.
Look for knowledge gaps on search engines
When you google your industry, products and company what comes up? Can you write better content than the existing pages in the top 10? By learning about the existing content already ranking you can then find gaps that they did not address and create your own content that fill those gaps. This is just as applicable for blogs as it is for your product pages. Anything you can do to further differentiate through added value will yield more traffic and ultimately more conversions.
Of course, there’s a lot more to each of these tips.If you need any help with your content strategy heading into 2020, we’re happy to assist.
When it comes to improving the ranking of your website or increasing organic traffic, investing in SEO is important. Search engine optimization is one of the primary digital marketing techniques that can help you reach your target audience and help you improve the visibility of your brand online. Thus, making use of well-regarded SEO services is essential if you want to stay ahead of the fierce competition in your industry.
However, those doing the SEO for their website without the help of an agency can find it difficult to grasp the various intricacies of this online marketing technique. One of the reasons for this is the sheer number of on-page and off-page factors that SEO comprises of. Another reason is the frequent Google algorithm updates, which makes it difficult for most to stay on top of the ever-evolving SEO world. This poses a challenge for most marketers as well as newbies, who if not aware of the latest changes and trends in SEO, make silly SEO mistakes that prove to be quite costly.
Some of the most common SEO mistakes that you should know about are keyword stuffing, broken links, slow website speed, un-optimized landing pages, boring website content, among others. These mistakes not only affect user engagement but also harms your site’s credibility. These mistakes are also one of the reasons for a high bounce rate on your website, which leads to a lower-ranking on SERPs and a decrease in conversion.
If you want to learn what the most common silly SEO mistakes are, then you can refer to the infographic below. You can also refer to this helpful guide here, to know how to fix these mistakes before it becomes an issue. You can of course contact Stikky Media and we’re happy to help you develop and implement your SEO strategy.
Ultimately, the goal of a well-optimized product page is to increase sales. Sounds simple, but in fact, encouraging visitors to click the ‘add-to-cart button’ requires a number of components to be placed optimally on the page and to work in sync. In general, the page must highlight the product (of course), be informative and enticing with great copywriting and be easy to use with a strategically planned page design. Your unique branding should be obvious and shine through all these components. A person could conceivably land directly on a product page without going through your home page. Associating your spectacular product with your brand from the get-go is the first step in developing customer loyalty.
Let’s unpack the features that make up a great product page.
1. Use Exceptional Product Photos.
In an actual brick and mortar store, the shopper can touch the product, pick it up, try it on, see how it feels and looks on their unique body. Online shopping provides so much less sensory information. Providing detailed, professional quality photos will help bridge that sensory gap somewhat.
Accordingly, the photos must be of high quality. Don’t skimp on this and upload blurry, little images that will immediately associate the product in the customer’s mind with low quality. It isn’t just aesthetics; customers need to see high quality images to derive information about the product. To make it almost as good as being there:
- Customers will want to be able to zoom in on a product to see details.
- They will want to see the product from multiple angles.
- Link your images to variants of the product (if any)
- Depending on the product they will want to see it in context (show somebody wearing the clothes).
- Depending on the product, they might want to see it in use.
- Include videos if it makes sense for your product.
2. Leverage Low-key Cross-selling.
A photo-related feature that will not only enhance your conversion rate but also user experience if it is done correctly, is to offer images of complementary or related products. This could be something in the line of including thumbnails of the accessories shown in the product image of a model wearing a blouse, for example. A potential customer looking at the blouse image might be thinking how nice the bracelet goes with the blouse, and wondering where or how to buy one. A discreet thumbnail with an add-to-cart link is simply being helpful.
The trick here is to be subtle. Don’t annoy potential customers by bombarding them with images that are only distantly related and will distract them from buying the product at hand. Rather, provide truly useful suggestions and do it discreetly and thoughtfully.
3. A Prominent Call to Action (CTA).
The Call to Action is the most important item on the product page, from a selling point of view; you really want that visitor to click it, and you need to make it easy for them to do so.
The CTA’s message must be crystal clear (Add to Cart, for example ). This is not the place for any sort of clever play on words or ambiguity.
As well, the CTA must be immediately visible, standing out from the rest in some way. Provide enough white space around the CTA so it doesn’t get lost in clutter, and if it fits with your branding, use colour to make it instantly obvious.
4. Great Copywriting.
Be Useful – Think Customer-first
Copywriting must above all be useful to your potential customer. To be effective you need to anticipate the questions and concerns your customers will have, and proactively address them. Key to this, is a good knowledge of your target customers: what are their general concerns, how will they use your product and so on. Generally, people require more detailed information before they buy a higher priced item than a lower cost one.
Layout is also important. For detailed information, organize it in short blocks that are easy to scan so your customers can quickly find what they want to know.
This is especially important for the product descriptions. Always speak in your brand’s voice, and to your specific customers. Never, ever just copy-paste the manufacturer’s description. If possible, add testimonials with story-like details, if not a whole story — although that might be appropriate in some circumstances. People relate to stories. Short narratives about personal experience using a product in real life can activate intangible, emotional associations such as a sense of quality.
5. Trust Signals and Social Proof.
Trust signals are all those things that inspire confidence in your potential customer by addressing the practical concerns upfront. These are the concerns that otherwise might stop the potential customer from purchasing — concerns such as shipping costs, how it will ship, when it will arrive, returns et cetera. Details or links to more information should be provided in the above the fold area of the page. This is a great place to promote free shipping also. Providing the option to save to a wishlist is also a great idea to keep those customers who don’t want to buy right away in the loop.
Customer reviews are one of the most important elements you can add to your page to provide social proof. People look to fellow customers for unbiased testimonials about the value of a product. Reviews build trust and go a long way in convincing customers to buy. Stellar, detailed reviews are best, of course, but even a few less-than-stellar reviews aren’t necessarily the end of the world; they can add validity and the sense of impartial honesty.
Incorporate these five suggestions and you will be well on your way to increase your ecommerce conversions. The most important point to remember is to step in your customer’s shoes. Be sure to provide an experience that is focused on being helpful with all the information your customers need. Buying should be in an easy, distraction-free process.
Read this case study to learn how The Clay Pot, a jewelry store in NYC, completed a successful migration to Shopify from Magento without a drop in traffic or conversions. (more…)
When a visitor posts to your Facebook Page, it does not show up in the main feed the same way as your own postings do. Instead, it is hidden within your Facebook “posts page.” Which means, visitors to your page cannot easily view posts on your Facebook page made by visitors. Unless people dig deep and really explore your Facebook site, it’s unlikely they will see comments visitors post to your page.
And that, sadly, is a missed digital marketing (and boasting!) opportunity. Visitor posts are typically chock-full of glowing reviews, grin-worthy shout-outs, and honest reasons why you’re the best at what you do. And that’s good, because, people trust and respond to online reviews. However it doesn’t have to be that way – read our guide to learn how visitor posts can be easily added to your business Facebook page’s main feed where everyone can view them.
When it comes to influencer marketing, Instagram ranks first among the social media platforms most commonly used by the influencers. Influencers employ Instagram to promote their personal opinions and specific brands’ products when hired to do so.
Influencers and influencer marketing are certainly not a novelty at this point. In fact, this infographic shows that about 40% of these influencers are already in long-term partnerships with specific brands.
The way sales are made has changed a lot over the years. As the digital world grows, the way we sell has undergone huge transformations. Read on to discover 4 ways to sell more online using traditional tactics reworked for the digital age. (more…)
As humans, we’re very visual creatures. It’s an evolutionary imperative. In nature, colors play a big role in survival. Bugs, for example, may be colored red to signal to predators that they are poisonous. Flowers are brightly colored to better attract bees.
Applying color psychology is a powerful way to boost website conversions. Check out this detailed color psychology infographic to learn what emotions specific colors convey and what will covert best for your brand and industry.
This year, Stikky Media attended Social Media Camp 2019. Read on to learn about our experience at this unique Canadian social media conference, topics covered by the speakers and our key takeaways.