As with all marketing activity, there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to generating revenue – especially in the retail sector. However, there are a handful of Paid Marketing tactics that can help retailers make the most of opportunities and reap the revenue rewards quick-sharp.
Let’s face it, as the demands and expectations of today’s consumer continue to rise, marketers need to utilise paid channels in a far savvier fashion, to create touch points at every stage of the journey.
Here’s just a few tricks we have up our sleeves to make paid marketing for retail (and beyond!) a doddle…
Teaming up with other digital channels
Surely every Marketing Manager knows that channel integration is a top priority for improved digital performance?
No longer can brands get away with a scatter-gun approach to finding new customers and promoting disjointed messaging (not that we ever thought it was acceptable!)
It’s just plain confusing, not to mention frustrating for the potential customer.
In order to get messages heard in a way that’s louder and clearer than ever, campaign integration is where it’s at.
Choosing one message to promote via all channels adds instant trust and credibility to your brand. Especially when promoting a time-sensitive sale, offer or deal; consistency makes brands look organised and committed to winning a customer over.
Take our client, luxe British label L.K.Bennett, flaunting their sale via consistent messaging across the website, email, paid ads and sitelinks. The sitelinks alone increased CTR to a whopping 19% during “60% Off Sale” activity!
To put this in practice, we recommend new landing page artwork in-line with discounts as a starting point.
How frustrating is it when you see an ad for 60% off then find no mention of this sale onsite? Think from shopper’s point of view and don’t make them go hunting for the sale that caught their attention in the first place!
But, before going hunting for fresh customers, give loyal fans a sneak peak of the deals. Again, it’s pretty annoying when all the best offers are saved for the new customers and those super-sought-after repeat purchasers don’t get first dibs of sale stock.
Planning for Seasonality
Whether a business trades for the Christmas boom, or relishes in the glory of summertime sales, getting seasonality right can be make-or-break for any brand.
Utilising tools such as Google Sheets help us stay on top of promotional and marketing calendars (so everyone is working with the latest version), and in-the-know when big sales pushes take place.
This also benefits brands when we reduce workload by creating website banners, display image ads, and affiliate email headers at the same time. No point making a mountain out of a molehill during the busiest periods of the year, is there?
However, seasonality is more than just routine. Take searches for “Christmas gift” in the UK:
Based on Google Trends data, we can see that not only is this phrase becoming more popular every year, but searches are occurring earlier than ever.
This applies to individual products and markets too; such as searches for “Chocolate Christmas gift”:
Christmas is prime time for Godiva, so staying abreast of these changes in consumer shopping behaviour means brands should be launching Gift Guide pages even earlier than previous years. By setting “Christmas” campaigns live on 29th September, click-through rates peaked in October on 5.38% while competition was low. Impressions slowly increased from 226 at the end of September to 23,285 week commencing 15th December, so brand visibility was maximised throughout this period. Doing this also maximises SEO traction ahead of the December rush, and ensures your brand stays top-of-mind from the research phase through to purchase.
Opportunities that can’t be planned!
As much as we can plan around marketing calendars, scheduled sales, new stock launches and end-of-season offers, there are some product frenzies that can’t be predicted.
One of which we’ve encountered for the likes of L.K.Bennett and Glamorous is the ‘Celebrity Effect’, or most recently in Glamorous’ case, the Kate Middleton effect. One snap of a star, or indeed Royal Duchess, with or wearing one of your products, will have a site bombarded by fashionistas and celebrity fanatics left, right and centre!
From a marketing point of view, it’s a now-or-never opportunity to jump on the bandwagon and make the most of the media spotlight. Needless to say, however, your site needs to be technically sound enough to deal with the demand and you need to have the stock in place to fulfill the orders.
As well as bidding when we know search volume will spike to unprecedented heights, Paid Marketing works closely with the Affiliate channel to maximise this extra interest in the brand. A celebrity endorsement opens up conversations with a variety of different bloggers and publishers, while presenting an opportunity to get in front of their readers when the product/garment is bang-on-trend.
Make the most of your good stuff
Just like promoting your sale via all channels possible, and ensuring your sale page reflects the good deal your customers are getting, it’s important to flaunt your unique selling points throughout the rest of the site too.
From a paid marketing perspective especially, there are multiple ways a searcher can enter your site for the first time; from bidding on brand keywords that lead users to the homepage, to broader keywords directing to a category, and guiding searchers straight to a product page via shopping ads.
It may sound repetitive, but it’s good practice to reinforce the benefits of shopping with the brand at every stage of the funnel; from homepage, to category, to product. This strengthens your offering, and allows all potential customers to hear the same message regardless of their journey through the site. It also helps to reduce bounce rate if brand benefits are clearly displayed.
The Berghaus benefits bar is a prime example of best-practice:
So, the rule of thumb for giving your new and existing customers the best brand experience is being consistent with your channel messaging, ensuring your website backs-up the promises in your ads, planning in advance for every eventuality, and making the most of any unexpected media attention.
For more practical advice and proven, effective steps on the path to retail revenue glory through paid marketing and other digital channels as part of an integrated digital strategy, check out our latest insight piece via the ad below, and begin mastering the art of effective segmentation and marketing personalisation.
For anything else, drop your details in the contact form below and our expert team will be on hand to assist, or head on over to our Twitter feed to ask to your heart’s content!