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How marketing automation can enable scaling your eCommerce business?

by GK January 07, 2020
marketing automation e-commerce

Most of the entrepreneurs don’t focus much on eCommerce marketing automation while starting a business. In the beginning, it is all about setting up a competitive venture and grabbing the available prospects in the market. It is indeed a wise choice to focus on current challenges and clutching on the foundation, but no entrepreneur starts without an aim to grow with time. Automation is all about scaling your business and growing it as the prospects increase.

What is scaling to an eCommerce venture?

Scaling goes in parallel to growth for an eCommerce venture. When you start with a scaling strategy, every part of the business must make a smooth transition as per growing demands. Although the transition doesn’t happen upfront, it’s certainly achievable with focused strategies aligned towards pushing your business in a ready state for heightened demands, new marketing-mixes, and heftier investments.

Most importantly, your technology stack must possess the ability to handle broadened prospects in terms of user-base, website traffic, customer expectations, new trends, and competitive marketing strategies. Lets’ understand the importance of marketing automation with the following example:

You started small with an affordable eCommerce platform. It did the job well and promised to handle up to 10,000 products, 100,000 user accounts, and most of the marketing tools trending back then. Moreover, it gave you an affordable way to start your eCommerce business.

However, now that your business has become a hit and you are getting over a million visitors per day, the user base has surprisingly increased to 2 million. The scale of your business is growing, but your website failing to accommodate a huge database. You didn’t expect such a huge success while beginning with a particular platform. Now, you don’t have an idea about how to handle the situation.”

The only option left here is migrating from your current eCommerce platform, but you know it’s not an easy task. You can’t afford to lose any of your data and marketing channels in the migration process. That’s a very small example of how scaling becomes difficult when you don’t plan for it. So how to scale an eCommerce business with automation?

How marketing automation can enable a seamless scaling?

Marketing automation in e-commerce is not just about migrating from platforms. An eCommerce business relies on several tools for smoother operation. Investing in the right kind of automation software would make scaling smooth, cheap, and effective. Right automation is all you need to minimize most of the manual work and upscaling on the marketing fronts.

You need not trust our words here, but you should definitely trust what 91% of the successful marketers say. They agree that marketing automation has helped them to not only overcome the migration glitches but also boost their overall success rate across targeted marketing channels by 50%.

So let’s study different types of marketing automation tools for eCommerce, which if you adopt keeping scalability in mind, you can ensure a slicker transition for your eCommerce business as it grows with time.

1.      The right kind of E-COMMERCE PLATFORM solution

It’s not just about eCommerce platforms but every other solution that aligns with it. As the eCommerce platform lays the foundation of your web store and its behavior towards marketing automation and other fronts, choosing the right kind of solution remains the most crucial decision.

We don’t say that popular eCommerce platforms in the market are not scalable, but some of them are not a good fit for the kind of scalability a venture of Amazon’s, eBay’s, or BestBuy’s scale would expect. If you notice carefully, you will see that these big websites do not work on traditional PHP-based technology stacks. Instead, they consist of much better MEAN and MERN stacks that include node.js shopping cart, react.js, express.js, and NoSQL databases. They choose their stacks based on their current requirements and future prospects too.

Therefore, the first step in this entire process for eCommerce marketing automation would be to know how to choose the right kind of eCommerce platform. If you have a big plan in your mind, and you are looking for a perfect platform for it, don’t limit yourself on price considerations alone. Consider the technology stack’s feasibility with popular third-party solutions like CDN, CRM, Payment Gateways, and Email marketing tools, etc. as primary metrics.

You can check out eBay’s technology stack as seen on stakshsare.io for your reference. You can see the range of automation tools it uses for a smoother operation. They know the importance of marketing automation.

2.      Integrate CRM SOFTWARE for current and future needs

The basic principle of marketing automation is devising all-round management of the marketing-mix, lead generation, and re-targeting strategies. If you have designed a sales funnel, you have to guide your customers into it at every step. That’s where you need a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool developed for just this resolution.

With CRM software, you can store all kinds of customer data, sales-record, product information, and data from all of your previous marketing campaigns on a central location. This makes it easier for marketers to track, collect, and analyze data into meaningful insights and adopt better strategies to build customer relationships.

Apart from data collection, the same eCommerce automation tools can also manage your workflows and trigger automated alerts for programmed events such as-

  • Customers performing certain targeted actions
  • A new lead captured through the target touchpoints
  • Alarms triggered via third-party integrations such as:
    1. Inventory Management System
    2. Live chat from AI chatbot
    3. Social media handles
    4. Email campaigns
    5. Push notification tools
    6. Payment getaways
    7. Refund Management System etc.

The best way to choose the right CRM is by tallying its compatibility with your eCommerce platform and then all kinds of third-party tools you have been using or planning to use. A CRM tool must work in perfect synchronization with multiple niche automation tools to assure all-round automation of the business process along with your preferred marketing-mix.

Examples: Salesforce, Act!, HubSpot CRM, and Agile CRM, etc.

3.      Automate the entire EMAIL MARKETING with correct tools

Although marketers these days are utilizing an array of modern marketing channels, traditional email marketing is still the backbone of eCommerce marketing automation. As you scale up, you would need a more sophisticated way to not only capture but also nurture your email data.

Even the biggest eCommerce brands device strategies for three main types of emails: blast, nurturing, and drip campaigns. While blast campaigns rely on broadcasting to the entire email database, you need more strategic approaches to launch drip campaigns. The toughest yet most fertile is nurturing, which considers both timing and user behaviors to send personalized emails.

You can, of course, manage all three campaigns with manual approaches when you have just begun your business. However, as it grows bigger, you need a scalable email automation tool to handle your campaigns, particularly for nurturing and drip campaigns. You would need an email automation tool to get-

  • An automated email scheduling system
  • Subject and salutation personalization as per personal information
  • Ready-made and optimized email marketing templates for different scenarios
  • Ability to launch and track multiple email marketing campaigns at the same time
  • Deep analytics to measure campaign performance and implement further improvements

Marketing automation tools for eCommerce emails are not limited to marketing and promotion itself. The same tool can work with other add-ons to capture, track, and trigger automatic emails for specific events such as an abandoned cart, after-purchase invoice, order confirmation, collect customer feedback, send discount coupons, and much more.

Examples: Drip, MailChimp, GetResponse, and Constant Contact, etc.

4.      A future-ready CONTENT MARKETING strategy with automation

Content marketing may not seem automation-friendly at first, but it comes extremely handy to manage bulk content without beating around the bushes. In reality, we don’t automate the entire content marketing process but mostly the content distribution part.

Similar to email campaigns, selecting content scheduling can help you to deliver highly personalized offers, promotions, and instructions, to the target audience. You can use emails, push notifications, social media, and your blog channels to distribute personalized content aligned to such information.

For example, you can set triggers in your push notification tool to send relevant notifications and in-app messages to specific users based on their activities on your eCommerce app or the website. Similarly, a social media analytics tool can track and procure trending topics in your industry, and it can populate some useful keywords and topics for your next blog post.

Apart from this, you can also use specific tools to add customized call-to-actions, images, banners, and other types of texts in your campaigns to boost engagement and conversion rates. In short, automation in content marketing is all about trend analytics and populating personalized content as per specific circumstances. E-commerce automation tools would make your content marketing more organized and content more relevant to the target audience.

Examples: Buzzsumo, SEMRush, Hootsuite, and Buffer, etc.

5.      Stay on the track with proper DATA ANALYTICS and automation

In a study by HubSpot, they found that 70% of the companies do not achieve their revenue goals, and out of them, 74% have not been even tracking their monthly traffic, leads, conversion ratio, and other sales opportunities.

These numbers are a clear indicator that companies need automated data analytics for their business. With the right metric, eCommerce companies can uncover effective strategies, even in the up-scaled scenarios. It doesn’t matter how big is your website or you have a massive is your user-base; you need data analytics to stay in that position. Especially when you are growing rapidly, you don’t want to make silly mistakes and lose your business.

You need multiple automation for the processes such as SEO, SEM, A/B testing, Heat map tracking, and overall Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO). You can’t track your conversion funnel manually forever. That’s why you need the following eCommerce marketing automation tools to manage crucial analytics:

  • A/B testing tool
  • Heat map tracking tool
  • Keywords research tool
  • SEO audit tool

Examples: Google Analytics, Kissmetrics, and Hotjar, etc.

Scalability is not an option but a necessity

As discussed earlier, scalability and growth move hands-in-hands. If you want your business to grow, then scalability is not an option but a necessity for you. We have given some examples for eCommerce automation tools in each category, but there are dozens of many others as well in the market. As per your budget and requirements, you can choose any one, two, or all of them. Some of them are even free to use.

We would suggest you make full use of eCommerce marketing automation tools at your disposal and automate as many tasks as you can. Manual operation is not accessible when you are talking about scaling your business for massive prospects. You need not only be quick with most of your tasks but also ensure an error-free execution.

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