E-Commerce Seller Financing • February 1, 2021
Any business or entrepreneur is a brand. Even if it’s you are a single person behind your e-commerce business, you are still a brand.
Branding doesn’t only refer to the logo and font of your e-commerce store and the selection of products that you offer buyers. While branding most definitely includes those, it encompasses a lot more than just that.
Branding is any aspect of your business that makes your business unique and evokes a specific feeling from your target audience. This covers a variety of aspects from your logo and inventory to the philosophy and values of your business.
Since e-commerce businesses are becoming increasingly favored by buyers over local stores and competition is growing immensely, it’s essential for online stores to invest in and improve their branding in order to attract and retain potential buyers.
Let’s take a look at 10 ways in which you can improve your e-commerce store’s branding.
How to Improve the Branding of Your E-commerce Business
1. Focus on Authenticity and Transparency
Buyers are becoming more and more interested in what occurs behind closed doors. They want to know where your materials come from, how your employees and the people who develop your products get treated and paid, and where your allegiances lie when profits are not a concern.
Data supports that. 66% of buyers believe that transparency is one of the most attractive qualities in a brand, and 86% choose whether to like and support a brand based on how authentic it is.
Don’t try to fool them, especially the younger audience such as Millennials or Gen Zers. The Internet has made it incredibly easy for us to find information that we need or are interested in. It is also exponentially more difficult to hide information.
It’s best to be open and honest; it will help you improve your branding.
2. Build Trust with Your Potential Customers
In the past, direct cold advertising used to work. You could invest in a well-crafted ad and tell people to buy, and they did. Nowadays, this is no longer an option.
To improve your branding, you need to focus on building long-term relationships with your potential audience, even those who may never buy from you. It’s no longer about telling customers to buy from you but rather make them trust you enough so that they choose to buy from you.
They will choose if they trust you, and 81% of all buyers state that they are unable to buy from a brand unless they trust it.
You can cultivate your relationships through social media, by posting and engaging with your audience, through regular newsletters, and by appreciating your loyal audience with perks like discount codes, promotions, special offers, and more.
3. Make Your Brand Messaging Straightforward
It takes buyers a fraction of a second, 50 milliseconds to be accurate, to form your opinion about your brand. Just like when meeting people, first impressions matter.
So, ensure that it’s explicitly clear what your brand is about in a matter of milliseconds. Is your website up to date? Is it clear what you do and offer? Do colors and images properly represent your brand and align with your values? Is it easy to find and browse through your products and your website, in general?
Make sure that your improvement is constant and regular. Don’t stagnate and continuously improve your branding over time.
4. Be Vocal About Your Values and Support Social Issues
While you vote only once in a couple of years as a citizen, as a customer you vote with your money each time you make a purchase.
As there are more brands that buyers can choose from, they no longer only have to select a store that has good products. Therefore, 64% of buyers choose to either buy from a brand or boycott it solely on the social issues that it supports.
It does not only affect small e-commerce stores, but also big brands. For instance, Gillette’s male care product sales declined following the controversial ad targeting toxic masculinity. While the ad was demonstrating a stance, it did not align with the values of its core audience.
To improve your branding, clearly state the values that your company holds on its about page as well as any organizations or movements that your business supports or donates to. Posting on social media platforms that you use about the social issues you support and values you hold is another way to continuously improve your e-commerce store’s branding.
5. Provide Excellent Customer Service
Take care of your customers in the best way possible, and they will take care of you (by buying from you). Have honest and straightforward policies, answer e-mails and social media queries, accept returns, handle customer complaints with care, respond to customer feedback even if it’s negative in a respectful manner.
There are numerous ways in which you can improve your customer service, and your buyers will most definitely appreciate it. In fact, a whopping 73% of customers state that customer service quality is one of the factors that affect their buying decisions.
Regardless of the size of your e-commerce business, it can benefit you to continuously improve your branding. That doesn’t only mean having a great logo, but the overall experience that your brand is creating.