Why is branding important for eCommerce businesses?
Your brand encapsulates everything about your business. It’s everything from your visual style, to your brand persona and even the way your customer service teams communicate. It’s what makes your eCommerce site stand out from all other eCommerce sites. Years before the internet, the word “Amazon” only meant a rainforest to most people. Now, when you hear that word, would you think of a forest? Nope, you think of the brand.
Your brand is what makes people choose you over another eCommerce site. It’s what makes them trust you with their money and it’s what will make them come back again and again for more products.
If you want to be successful in eCommerce then you need to have a strong presence online that showcases who you are as a company and why customers should choose you over another online retailer selling similar products or services.
How to build your eCommerce brand
Building an eCommerce brand is a lot like building a brick-and-mortar store. It takes time and effort, but the results can be rewarding.
Branding is important in any business, but it’s especially critical for online stores. Customers can’t see your products or meet you in person, so they rely on your branding to give them an idea of who you are and what you stand for.
We will guide you on how to build a brand online. eCommerce branding strategies have a lot of components, but really it is a simple formula. And, once you have your branding ideas, you can create your eCommerce branding guide. Your strategy gives your brand standards to help you maintain consistency that your customers can begin to identify and associate with. Here’s how to build a brand from scratch.
1. Know your buyer persona
To start, it is crucial to know who your customer is. All of your branding elements will revolve around the people who are buying your products. Your clients serve as the base of any successful branding strategy.
People buy from people they know, like and trust. So, a well-defined persona can help you build relationships with them by making them feel like part of the team.
A buyer persona is a fictitious character that represents your target audience. It includes details such as demographics, psychographics and behaviors — all of which can be used to create marketing messages that resonate with buyers.
You might already have some information about your target customers’ demographics (age, gender and geographic location) but in order to create truly effective messaging, you need to know more than just basic facts like this. You also need to understand their personal interests and motivations for purchasing from you — their psychographics — as well as how they behave when making purchases — their behavioral patterns.
2. Establish your brand persona
Branding is more than just a logo. It’s how you present your company to the world and how people perceive you. A brand persona adds personality to your company and helps you effectively communicate. It makes you more than just a logo.
To establish your brand persona, start by revisiting your buyer persona. Who is your audience? What kind of language do they use? Learn more about their language by taking a look at how they talk in reviews they’ve left of you or similar products, do additional consumer research, and look at the language your competitors use. By talking how your customer talks you increase their responsiveness.
You should also consider what kind of personality you want to have as a company. Whether it’s fun and playful or serious and professional — or anything in between — pick one that fits best with your brand identity and the message you want to convey to customers, colleagues, investors and other stakeholders (such as suppliers).
3. Utter Your Mission Clearly
Every brand has a mission. A mission to design ridiculously aesthetic websites, delivering fresh orchids, offering on-demand home services, or something else. Your mission tells people what your brand is about. What you’re having for them. So whatever your mission is, make sure to tell it to everyone. Because sometimes, people remember your brand just because of your mission.
Your mission should be simple and easily understood by everyone. It doesn’t have to be complex or long-winded (unless you want it to be). You can even put it in a tagline: “We make websites beautiful so you can do business better.” Not only does this help people understand what you do but also makes them relate with you more easily and personally because they get an idea of where you’re coming from and what inspires you personally as well as professionally.
The benefits of having a clear mission are many:
- It helps people relate better with your brand;
- It helps establish trust between the brand and its audience;
- It makes it easier for customers to identify with your company;
- It gives people an idea of what they can expect from working with you;
4. Establish a presence on social media
The most basic yet effective method of increasing your brand’s visibility is through social media. Every other company nowadays uses social media to market themselves, connect with their customers, or drive traffic. You are well aware that almost everyone of any age group uses social media nowadays. And if we look ahead to 2025, we can estimate that 4.4 billion people will be using social media.
Social media is the most effective way for eCommerce businesses to reach out to their target audience and enjoy a positive ROI. The best part about marketing on social media is that it is free! All you need to do is create an account on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or any other network and start posting updates about your products and services. Make sure you have an attractive bio which describes what your business does and why you are different from others.
You can also use these networks to gather leads by posting surveys, asking questions etc., so that when someone responds they will automatically be added to your mailing list or database without much effort from your side!
5. Establish Your Brand’s Position
Brand Positioning is the process of determining how your brand will differentiate itself from the competition. Because the eCommerce market is so congested, it’s vital to figure out how to best fit into the existing market. What exactly do you do, and how might you outperform your competitors? The benefits you want people to think of when they think of you are your unique value proposition.
A memorable brand positioning statement should act as a guiding light for all other marketing efforts. It should help your customers understand what makes you different from other brands in your category and why they should buy from you instead of them.
The best way to determine your brand positioning is to create a list of every possible benefit you could offer customers and then rank them based on their importance, starting with those that matter most (e.g., price). From there, look at each attribute individually and ask yourself “How can we deliver on this feature better than anyone else?” This line of questioning will help you identify the unique selling proposition that differentiates your business from the competition.
6. Establish your visuals
Visuals are particularly important in eCommerce because when shopping online people can’t touch or feel products. Visuals range from your logo to typography to photography.
A professional brand identity is important because it helps customers connect with your brand and understand what you stand for. It should be consistent throughout all of your marketing materials, including social media and email campaigns.
People make judgments about a business before they even know its name. A logo is the first step in creating an effective brand identity, so make sure it reflects your business goals and personality.
Typography has been proven to influence consumers’ perceptions of products and companies. Choose fonts that are easy-to-read, but also appropriate for the content being displayed on the page. Don’t use Comic Sans — it’s just not professional!
7. Create content in your brand voice
One of the most important aspects of eCommerce branding is to create a consistent brand voice across all platforms. This means creating content that is written in the same voice as your website, using the same tone, style and format. This helps to build trust with your customers, who will see that you are being authentic and consistent.
Content helps your brand persona build relationships with your customers by sharing your vision and value. Engage with them, holding true to your brand persona, on social media whether that is through content that you’ve created, by listening to them, by providing customer support, or by selling.
As an example, if you have a blog then you should be posting on a regular basis about topics that are relevant to both your product and the needs of your customers. If someone comes across a post on Facebook or Twitter from one of their friends that they like but has nothing to do with what they sell then they may not trust it or find it as valuable as another person’s post that they do trust because it’s relevant to them personally (and therefore their needs).
8. Get to know your customers
Branding isn’t everything. As an eCommerce site, you must focus on your services to sustain your brand image. Customers may receive bad products or faulty goods from time to time; there may be other sellers in your eCommerce website who aren’t very strict with their product quality.
It is important for you as a seller to create a rapport with your target audience so that they can trust you with their purchases. This can be done through email newsletters, social media posts and even advertisements on Google AdWords or Facebook Ads.
Your goal here is not just to sell products but also to establish yourself as an authority in the industry so that people will rely on your advice when buying products online.
So, get out there and get branding! Your brand is a reflection of your ecommerce business, so it’s important to keep it looking fresh and consistent from start to finish. You may want to try out a few different designs until you strike the perfect balance for your business, and then constantly update your visuals with your latest products and announcements.
The more effort you put into your ecommerce brand strategy now, the more you’ll be rewarded in the long run! And if you’re still not sure how to get started, don’t hesitate to reach out to Neu Entity as your branding agency. We’ll be more than happy to gush about our favorite brands with you.
If what you see here is relevant for you and can help you grow your business or organisation, we’d love to discuss further with you. Drop us a message or schedule an appointment with us.