While April may, traditionally, be a month of showers, the team at Accorin is happy to say that things have been pretty sunny in the world of e-commerce. We’ve been musing about digital strategy with BCG, getting glammed-up with Glam Squad, and discussing the many benefits of email marketing. As usual, we’re here to bring you news of all the latest trends and most promising developments in e-commerce, so let’s kick this April newsletter off with a bang.
In the world of e-commerce, it is is easy to get caught-up in day-to-day tactics, but keeping abreast of market changes and the strategic implications is critical. This insightful piece, from Boston Consulting Group discusses an effective methods of creating value and evolving from your existing position. It emphasises the importance of forging close links with customers and provides a three phase matrix for businesses looking to maximise their online potential.
The three phases are enhancement, exploration, and transformation. Within the sphere of e-commerce, they can be applied to positioning, merchandising, and feature/functionality within e-commerce. In the simplest form, the strategic imperatives are to (1) stand out from the crowd and market rivals, (2) stay abreast of trends and knowing what customers want, and (3) embrace change and adapt to industry developments.
Read the whole BCG article here.
For Accorin’s clients, email is a cornerstone marketing tactic, so it’s important to know which types of email campaigns are worth the time and investment. Fortunately, there is a lot of great analysis in the marketplace to help inform your decisions. Marketing Sherpa has published a great research article which highlights the most effective campaign types.
The four campaigns that come out on top are exclusive deals, promotional content, loyalty rewards, and social selling (see the highlighted green line below). We have found that all of these email types align closely with the construction of e-commerce loyalty platforms (an area of e-commerce that Accorin has found to deliver significant value in). Loyalty programs by themselves offer a great foundation for sustained email campaigns with the power to drive incremental revenues.
For the full Marketing Sherpa article, read more here.
April’s creative inspiration can be found at Glam Squad, a leading on-demand beauty provider (think Uber for makeup, manicures and hairstyling). Its website is beautifully crafted, with high quality, full definition images as the creative foundation. This design approach allows the company to merchandise its services with studio quality photography that is all about visual inspiration.
Yet, this doesn’t detract from its sales copy. It uses language that alludes to quality and exclusivity, and it doesn’t overcrowd its products. Glam Squad is a great example of how a successful e-commerce platform can use high-end creative and break-out of the traditional e-commerce design structure, because it has the confidence to let the brand positioning of the company shine through.
Rich visuals and a conscious attention to the type and fonts set the tone on the homepage:
Simple product assortment, presented elegantly on the Product Listing Page:
Excellent merchandising. Inspiring pictures are so powerful in an e-commerce site.
There is important news from BigCommerce this month. Continuing the trend of Shopify and Volusion, this leading provider of SaaS e-commerce software is continuing in its efforts to cater to larger retail customers. It has now launched an e-commerce option for enterprises with up to $20 million in online sales. This positioning is focused on a tier of the SaaS market historically dominated by Demandware.
At Accorin we are platform agnostic and deploy equal numbers of SaaS (e.g. BigCommerce, Shopify, etc.) and installed solutions (e.g. Magento) for our customers. Which option do we recommend? It depends. As with any technology decision, the choice of platform should be driven by business requirements. Increasingly, we see SaaS options as valuable options, because they provide a high level of extensibility that is vital for businesses working with large catalogues, custom pricing parameters, and bigger assortments, without the need to manage the technology infrastructure.
Learn more about the new BigCommerce functionality here.
The Bottom Line
And, that’s it for the April newsletter. We’ll keep watching for interesting updates, big trends, and emerging technologies. Make sure that you return in May for more from the Accorin team, or if you are looking for a partner to help grow your e-commerce revenues, give us a call.