Author: smurali
Ecommerce Consultancy firm?

What To Look For In An E-commerce Consultancy Firm?

Brands globally are ramping up their e-commerce businesses. It’s being taken seriously by the top management across sectors. When brands look at establishing an e-commerce roadmap to exploit the potential to maximize online revenues – they know that they’ve got to build out an e-commerce department. And then starts the question – do we build that team in-house, or do we outsource it? What are the consequences of that decision? 

At Tenovia, we believe that getting the right team in a fast-growing space like e-commerce is tricky – and the cost of the wrong hires can set a brand back by 6 – 12 months. And that’s why at the core of our belief – we’ve built a model where we work as the outsourced ecommerce department for a fast-growing brand. 

The idea of this blog post is to help you consider some factors when selecting an e-commerce consulting firm: 

Tips to remember while selecting an e-commerce consultancy firm

  • Look at the firm’s services 

Look at the team’s services – will they work for you as a team extension? Can their services be bundled up and also be deployed in parts. 

  • Look at the firm’s portfolio. 

Look at the track record of the consulting firm/agency. One good way is to see the brands they’ve worked with. Go through the case studies. Ask them to talk you through their most successful projects. 

Look for how their expertise can help your brand increase e-commerce revenues

Moreover, looking at their existing portfolio gives you a better idea of their work and their ability to understand various products and market demographics. A portfolio will tell you about the clients and size of companies they would have worked for. This will help you understand how well the firm can gel with your business. 

  • Look at the firm’s expertise areas.

Do they have the expertise in your industry? Or do they have the expertise in the functions where you need the most help? Remember – e-commerce is a large space – and it has its niches of expertise in multiple functions such as merchandising, supply chain, warehousing, logistics, cataloguing, customer service, marketing, analytics, and others. 

  • Look at the firm’s competencies in the three areas.

Your ideal e-commerce partner would be good in Technology + e-commerce business strategies and execution + digital transformation.

Gauge the capabilities of these competencies as well. 

  • Team size of the e-commerce agency

Will the e-commerce agency be able to provide enough resources to breathe life into your e-commerce business? You want to know the team size that would be working on your account. If possible – ask for profiles of the team members who would be working on your account. 

  • Do metrics and KPIs drive them? 

As you’re trying to set up your brand’s eCommerce business – make sure that the e-commerce consulting firm that you hire is driven by metrics and clear KPIs so that they can help you create an organization in which you can hold multiple members (whether in the house / outsourced) accountable. This needs metrics and KPIs to be defined and tracked. 

  • Know the strengths and weaknesses of your e-commerce agency

All agencies / consulting firms have their strengths and weaknesses. Best way to find out your agency’s strengths and weaknesses? Ask them. 

The bigger the dream – the more important the team. So make sure you know you’re well enough. 

  • What’s their roadmap for you?

E-commerce offers exciting opportunities for your business. A consultant’s strong understanding of the marketplace and its policies help formulate your business plan for e-commerce. They offer tried and tested solutions and abundant resources to create a roadmap suited to where you are in your ecommerce journey. A strategic roadmap will provide you with the liberty to track your goals, quantitatively and qualitatively for both short term and long term basis. 

Why Does Your Business Need an e-Commerce Technology Partner ?

The e-commerce industry has been expanding significantly over the last 20 years – especially ever since the Covid-19 pandemic, higher consumer demand, digital receptiveness, – are the reason behind the  recent e-commerce growth. When it comes to Direct to Consumer channels – a brand’s own technology can be the competitive advantage in the – and that’s why brands need to understand and invest in it. Technology has given the consumers scope to access various tools to estimate prices, obtain coupons, and find alternatives, which resulted in the growth of online shopping.

How working with a technology partner benefits your e-commerce business? 

An e-commerce technology partner can help your e-commerce business grow in many ways. Here are some of the reasons how a technology partner can help your e-commerce business:

  • They bring products to market faster 

When you start working with a technology partner, you get instant access to experts’ knowledge about different platforms, emerging technologies, and integrations. 

  • Provide access to advanced technologies

Partnership with an outsourcing company signifies that your e-commerce business will be utilizing the latest technology and tools. 

  • Focus on core activities

A technology partner handles the rest of the processes and components to complete the omnichannel shopping experience. 

  • Less capital investment

A technology partner loses up your budget for improving other business functions. You also get the resilience to scale up or down these resources within less time.

Factors to remember while looking for a perfect technology partner

There are a lot of e-commerce solution providers out there. So, you should be careful and keep the following factors in mind before choosing one:

  • Area of expertise: While selecting a technology partner, try to go with a firm that has the experience in the particular domain and provides quality service. Because it not only helps you to analyze the market trend but also assists you through building a scalable product.
  • Support: A right tech partner makes sure that your work gets completed within the scheduled time. If you have any additional requirements, they must have a dedicated team assigned to provide the assistance immediately. 
  • Reliability: A partner should always be reliable irrespective of the domain and the field. So, carefully choose a technology partner who has been in the field for a long time now, and can be trusted to work with. 
  • Omnichannel: The modern-day customers do have a thing when it comes to where, when, and how they want to shop. So, select a technology partner who understands omnichannel inside out and can provide frictionless and seamless customer experience. 
  • Previous work: A company’s previous work and accomplishments says all about it. So, find a technology partner who has already worked on projects that are similar to your requirements and expectations. Also, find out if any of their previous work has won any appreciation in the form of awards. 

Therefore a technology partner helps your e-commerce business grow in many ways and ensures your future e-commerce trends are consistent. Here at Tenovia, our team of highly experienced and certified developers is ready to bring your vision to life. 

Call us today to explore our services!

Optimizing your eCommerce product pages for SEO success: A 2021 checklist

An optimized product page is essential for an eCommerce store, especially during the pandemic. Many products are now competing to be on page 1 in Google search and easily available for consumers who are searching for them. 

An optimized product page not only helps drive traffic but also converts the browsers into buyers. This will beat out the competition, and it will ensure the product pages are optimized. 

Here is a checklist to follow to ensure your eCommerce product page is optimized for success: 

The Dos:

1. A Keyword Strategy

Keyword research is the foundation for product page optimization. When researching one must use product-focused topics that users are actively searching for. Data from paid searches, can be used in the keywords, topic research and incorporate ad copy which will translate high click-through rates into meta descriptions.

2. Titles & Meta Descriptions

Title tags and meta descriptions are very important in product page optimization and it should include: 

  • The product brand 
  • Name of the product.
  • Model number.
  • And other important information

3. Product Pages with Structured Data

Collating the correct structure for data can help brands show up as rich snippets. All product pages should have product and review schema, which will help in:

  • Driving more impressions and clicks
  • And Improves CTR and drives more sales

4. FAQ Content

It is a must to have high-quality content that will meet the needs of users. If users do not find the content useful, bounce rates will be high, and customers may not buy the product.

5. Unique Product writeup & Meta Descriptions

Tailored content for each item can help rank branded and non-branded keywords. Hence, these should include a unique description. This will offer the consumers information which will help click on the listing and drive more traffic and sales.

6. Real Testimonials & Customer Reviews

Sharing genuine testimonials from customers who have tried your product will help purchase decisions and reflect well. It was also seen that product pages with customer reviews convert 58% more visitors than their review-free counterparts. Reviews help build trust while also providing fresh, unique content. 

7. Test the Landing Pages

Using tools like Optimizely and Google Optimize will help test the variations within product pages, which will help you figure out the ideal configuration. Changing the location of the call to action, etc, will help drive more conversions. Testing various page layout options and choosing the most impactful one is vital.

8. Quality Video & Imagery

High-quality images and videos can bridge that gap between the physical store and the virtual one. It provides end-users with the information they need to make confident purchases.

9. Minimize Load Times

Products need to be optimized for mobile. Fast-loading web pages will help get the content to the target audience faster and provide a better user experience. This also helps in increasing sales, revenue, and pages per session while decreasing bounce rates.

10. Audit the Product Pages 

Auditing the pages to see which technical and content elements need to be optimized is important. Elements to look out for include:

  • Title tags and meta descriptions
  • Slow page load times
  • Broken links
  • Thin content
  • 404 pages
  • 302 redirects
  • And missing structured data

The Don’ts:

1. Product Descriptions from Manufacturer’s Website

One of the most common mistakes in optimizing product pages is the usage of manufacturer descriptions. Most of the descriptions are not compelling and not optimized for search. Taking time to write descriptions will fare better. 

2. Don’t Remove Seasonal Pages 

A product page even if it is seasonal builds up rankings, traffic, and sales over time, hence it should not be removed. Even though they might not serve a real purpose creating content again each year would be challenging. 

3. Automated Optimization is a no

Dynamically populated product pages with the name of the product as the title tag, followed by brand and nothing else, is not a best practice. It needs to include important information in the titles, to rank for targeted keywords.

4. Out of Stock Pages Should Not be Removed

Even if products go out of stock the URL needs to still be live, especially if the page has rankings and traffic. Keeping the pages live and providing links to other, relevant products will prove to be beneficial. 

5. Usage of the Wrong Type of Structured Data 

Structured data can help the site rank and get more traffic and sales. Many brands do not implement structured data, however, this data will help the site rank for its rich snippets.

6. Weak Calls to Action

Many brands do not have strong calls to action, however, the use of clean and easy CTAs are a must-have for any site. The main job of a product page is to drive revenue and sales, hence a strong CTA is important. 

7. Do not Optimize Low-Volume Keywords

It is important to think like a customer and use that data to make decisions about which keywords to use. Optimizing keywords that do not rank will decrease revenue and clicks. 

8. Opportunities for Internal Linking & Backlinks

Opportunities to link for internal links and backlinks should not be missed. If these are linked pages will rank and will result in high purchase intent, that can increase revenue and sales. These efforts will improve both visibility and performance.

9. Wrong Prices

Not having the right pricing strategy may cause unrest in consumers. Hence, by choosing competitive pricing it will generate higher revenue, increase sales as well as clicks. 

10. Don’t Forget Mobile Optimization

Mobile devices are used tremendously to shop online. Not having a mobile-friendly product page can cause users to not buy products from your site. This optimization will also help in driving traffic to the website, and increase sales.

By following these guidelines including optimizing your page titles, descriptions, body content, building up internal links, and decorating your pages with structured data, will help you rank your website and create a successful SEO strategy for 2021. 

Magento Migration Deciphered

The eCommerce industry is ever-changing and consumers to need to keep up with the change. Support offered by Magento has ended and Magneto 2 has come to replace it. This is done order to provide web stores with new features, faster operations, better performance, advanced security mechanisms, and other benefits.

With the end of Magento 1- migrating to Magento 2 is the wisest choice as it saves on cost, time, and the overall process.  At Tenovia, with a team of experts and with over 14 years of experience, we understand the apprehension associated with migration. We’ve curated a list to help you decipher Magneto Migration and move forward as seamlessly as possible with our expertise.

Steps involved in Magento Migration

1.    Creating a plan:

To migrate without any obstacle, a plan needs to be curated. Analyzing the current Magento 1 website and noting the features that need to be implemented, eliminated or extended. Curating a plan for migration is one of the most vital steps in migration.

2.    Updating to the latest version:

Updating the original store to the latest version of Magento 1 available in the market is a must. This is quite essential with respect to Data Migration, the optimization of data will reduce errors. All the extensions and themes used need to be compatible with the latest Magento 1.x version too.

3.    Installing the latest version of Magento 2:

The server needs to prepare with the latest version of Magento 2. All the required libraries of this release installed, this will create an empty Magento installation without any extensions.

4.    Database migration:

Using the Data migration tool, a company can migrate data from Magento 1 database to Magento 2 database. During the stage is crucial and hence the web store must be on maintenance mode. After the data migration, a trigger sent into the Magento 1. The Database to capture new entries will occur when the store reopens for customers.

5.     Migration extension:

After carefully selecting the extensions for the Magento 2 store, installation can take place. A compatibility testing needs to ben run too, this will ensure that the installed extensions don’t cause a conflict with each other.

6.    System integration:

This step is critical as it involves external systems. Integrations with external systems and services to cover the functionality that cannot be covered by readymade extensions is a must. Integrating the store with either custom-built functionality or out-of-the-box solutions, which leverages the already existing Magento extensions.

 7.    Designing:

Migration of themes cannot happen from Magento 1 to Magento 2. Hence, selecting custom or ready-made themes will create a new look and feel for your eCommerce store.

8.    Delta migration:

All data accumulated in Magento 1 store since the first primary migration is now transferred to the Magento 2, with this the last step a fully functional Magento 2 store is ready.

9.    Take it live:

After the final verification has been performed, the Magento 2 website will get published, and your new and improved eCommerce store will hence be ready to use.

Contact the Magento migration experts at Tenovia and get a quote, and ensure a seamless migration. 

The Consumer Protection (eCommerce) Rule

The Consumer Protection Act: 

This act came to effect on August 9, 2019. However, the act only came into force on July 20, 2020. This act protects consumers, from unfair trade practices in eCommerce and to facilitate consumer welfare.

The rules impact: 

(a) all goods and services available on either digital or electronic networks, it also includes digital products

(b) all models of eCommerce, such as marketplace eCommerce and inventory eCommerce entity 

(c) all eCommerce multi-channels including single-brand retailers and single-brand retailers in single or multiple forms 

(d) all forms of unfair trade practices across all models of eCommerce.

(e) all eCommerce entities that are not in India but systematically offer goods and services to consumers in India

Duties

eCommerce entities: 

  • Corporate Entity: The rules set out that an eCommerce entity shall be a corporate entity under the Companies Act 2013 (regardless of the origin) or an office, branch or agency outside India owned or controlled by a person resident in India.
  • Nodal Officer: This requires an eCommerce entity to appoint a nodal person or an alternate senior is a resident in India, to ensure compliance with the Act or the Rules.
  • Disclosure of Information: An eCommerce entity requires one to provide the following information on its platform: 

(i) its legal name

(ii) the principal address of its headquarters and all branches

(iii) name and details of its website

(iv) contact details of customer care as well as of grievance officer

(v) details of the importer or seller of imported goods and services. 

This will hence ensure that the customer has all the information required for the eCommerce entity which will reduce the cases of fraud.

Changes in India's Consumer Protection Act 2019
  • Grievance Redressal: An eCommerce entity required to establish a grievance redressal mechanism and appoint a grievance officer for consumer grievance redressal.
  • Unfair Trade Practice: An eCommerce company should not adopt any unfair trade practice. Manipulation of the prices of the goods or services on its platform such that it can gain an unreasonable profit, should additionally not be done.
  • Cancellation Charges and Consent: eCommerce entities must not impose cancellation charges on consumers. Additionally, the rules also bar eCommerce entities from automatically recording consent of a consumer for purchase including in the form of pre-ticked checkboxes.

Marketplace eCommerce Entities

The rules suggest that the marketplace eCommerce entities need to ensure that sellers on their platform provide the description pertaining to the goods or services on their platform is accurate and corresponds directly with the actual features of the goods or services. They additionally need to disclose and display information about the sellers offering goods and services on its platform including information about the return, refund, exchange, warranty and guarantee, delivery and shipment, modes of payment, and grievance redressal mechanism, etc. Furthermore, inter alia, terms and condition need to be displayed too. 

Sellers on Marketplace eCommerce Entities

The rules also prohibit sellers from adopting any unfair trade practice, including posing as consumers to post product reviews, misrepresenting the quality or features of any goods or services. The sellers additionally, cannot refuse to take back goods or discontinue the services. The rules also impose that the sellers need to appoint a grievance officer for consumer grievance redressal, the advertisements for the goods and services they offer need to be accurate and disclose information the necessary information, the country of origin needs to on the pack, additionally, guarantees of authenticity or genuineness of imported goods, and other guarantees or warranties need to be applicable and valid

Inventory eCommerce Entities

The duties and obligations of the inventory eCommerce entities are similar to that of the sellers. They too need to disclose information, like the country of origin of the goods and services, etc. They further need to deliver the goods on time and have to guarantee the authenticity of the goods. 

E-commerce under Consumer Protection Act soon

The grey area of the Act: 

Price: 

Furthermore, eCommerce as said earlier cannot manipulate the price of the goods or services offered on its platform. However, there is no guidance on what is considered as ‘unreasonable profit’. For example, a luxury designer could sell a serum 3 times the price of a regular face mask, but would this be considered as an unreasonable profit? 

Contractual information: 

Any seller in the eCommerce marketplace must disclose all contractual information which must then be displayed on its platform. Similarly, every inventory eCommerce entity is also required to display contractual information required to be disclosed by law. However, it again becomes unclear about which contract information needs to be displayed? Is it the information between the seller and the marketplace eCommerce entity? 

Timeline for compliance: 

The eCommerce Rules have come to effect from July 23, 2020, and no grace period had been given for compliance especially to the offshore eCommerce companies that systematically offer goods or services to consumers in India. Generally, a grace period for compliance allowed in order for businesses to manage their affairs to become compliant. However, this is not the case under the eCommerce Rules. This thus can affect the functionality of the said entities

These rules aim to bring transparency and accountability in the provision of information disclosed to the consumers. It also reduces the possibilities of unfair trade practices by large sellers. With the increase in eCommerce activity especially in present times, these rules will address consumer grievances and prescribe practices that benefit consumers. Hence, for entities to comply with the rules, they will have to fundamentally overhaul their websites and will have to invest significantly in legal compliance. 

Is your online store festive ready?

This year’s festive season is unlike any other, with Covid-19 and various restrictions taking ground people can now only assume the results. Experts predict the shopping trends adopted in  2020 are here to stay. Unicommerce further reported that India’s e-commerce industry has witnessed an order volume growth of 31% for Q3 2020 ended in September, compared to that of last year. All these factors have taken form and resulted in dynamic growth and demand for various online stores. 

The festive season has always contributed to a heavy portion of sales for companies, and with the onslaught of the pandemic eCommerce companies can expect a boost of sales too. This year’s festive sales is likely to account to $4million dollars, additionally, a lot of firsts are to occur this festive season. Companies need to offer a seamless experience to their customers while not running dry of resources. 

Here are some tips for your online store this festive season:

Website load time optimization

Ensure that your online store is ready for the festive season’s high demand. Your store needs to offer optimum user experience, ensure that your store loads quickly, and offers convenience.  The ideal time for page load speed is three seconds – after that, the visitor might lose interest and leave your store. Additionally, page load speed is a vital Google ranking factor too.

User Experience

Your online store needs to offer the best user experience. Analyse your customers and find out what they prefer. Your eCommerce store must have a solid infrastructure that has a regular updating policy. In order to offer your user with the best user experience, you need to 

  •  Evaluate your overall online store experience
  • Update your strategies 
  • And optimize your checkout page

Secure your online store

Security is an essential factor when a consumer is making an online purchase. Hence, one needs to ensure that the online store has the right certification and security to boost customer confidence. Trust badges/seals are known to boost customer confidence in site security.

Selling, Delivery and other Fulfillments

Consumer experience is vital, a clear path must be laid down right from selling your product, right to shipment, delivery and overall offer fulfilment. You can ensure the same by 

  •  Expanding sales channels.
  • Setting out a clear path for shipment and delivery 
  • Enhancing packaging and unboxing experience
  • Ensuring a clear return policy is in place

Mobile optimization

Mobile selling is growing tremendously, with that one needs to ensure that your online store is able to function efficiently on mobile phones. Optimisation of online stores on mobiles are a must, this reduces the loss of visitors and ensures ease and convenience for the users.  

Customer Support

Enhance customer support and ensure all the customer queries are answered. Strong customer support will result in maximise conversions through consumer engagement. Achieve this through chatbots on the online stores, and 24×7 customer support system. 

Festive Marketing and Promotions

Consumers need to adopt efficient strategies to sell their product in the best way possible. Marketing and promotion of any product are vital this holiday season, companies need to prompt their festive season sales as creatively and strategically as possible. Here are a few pointers to ensure the same: 

  • Promotional strategies to engage customers
  • By integrating marketing efforts.

Post-festive season

Once, all of these tips are in place you need to then analyse the rate of success of your strategies, hence post-festive season one should

  • Measure the Success of the festive season campaigns: 

Set goals and measure the KPIs, this will help the overall store performance. 

  • Evaluate data and take necessary actions

Once the necessary data has been evaluated, necessary actions need to be taken to better the same. Wherever inputs need to be increased or decreased needs to be managed and done. 

  • Use data for future strategies

The data from the festive season sales should undergo analysis this will eventually enable better growth and strategies. 

With online orders increasing and online stores need to ensure user experience to be smooth from start to finish. By following these tips one can ace this year’s festive season sales. 

How to enhance security on your Magento Store

The eCommerce industry is growing rapidly, and with the growth of the industry, security threats are inevitable.

Even with thousands of dedicated servers working 24/7 to protect a company’s private information, security concerns are still prevalent. Data is a honeypot for hackers, and eCommerce platforms are victims of attacks, such as:

  • Stealing information and data
  • Phishing
  • Email Spams
  • And to damage a company’s site

Hence, enhancing security on eCommerce platforms becomes of utmost importance in this day and age. 

Large-scale Magecart attack

Magento 1.x had reached the end of its life, & Adobe ended support for it in June 2020. This change had caused the attacks on sites running with deprecated Magento 1.x version. 

These Magento websites were attacked with a malicious script titled as gstaticapi. This MageCart campaign had compromised the private information of users in over 2,000 Magento stores, according to Sanguine Security (Sansec) researchers. 

This automated campaign is one of the largest Magecart attacks affecting tens of thousands of customers. The attack did not require any admin accounts for executions. Attackers gained access through the Magento 1.x zero-day vulnerabilities, by a user named z3r0day.

Adobe has made efforts to migrate Magento store owners from version 1.x to 2.x, thus reducing vulnerable stores from 240,000 to about 95,000.  But with stores still using the older version instances of attacks and vulnerability will arise.

Companies need to protect their Magento stores in order to protect sensitive data of clients, to prevent industrial espionage and protect your company’s reputation and credibility. 

Tips to enhance security on your Magneto Store

1. Update

The latest Magecart attack happened because of the usage of Magento 1.x version which resulted in the vulnerability of personal data. Hence, software updates become critical not only to enable new features to function but also to fix bugs and error while eliminating vulnerabilities. 

2. Backup Store Regularly

By regularly saving backup copies,  and not storing them on the same server with the original website and restoring copies on a sandbox to make sure they’re working well, will further reduce issues.

Backing up files on another server will save it if the server crashes, and if an instance of a hacker arises,  they would access to your server as well as the backup copies.

3. Passwords

The admin password is the last stand of your Magento store security, and this password needs to be strong. Hence a complex password with more than ten characters, lower and upper cases, and featuring special characters like ^$#%*, etc, needs to be used. The reuse of passwords must be minimal, as it increases the risk of losing accounts.

Furthermore, passwords need to be changed periodically and shouldn’t be saved on the PC as Trojan Softwares can steal saved passwords. Hence, one should be able to manage passwords efficiently and effectively.

4. Two-Factor Authorization 

Even the safest password can be stolen. Therefore, to raise the level of security it is recommended to make use of a second authorization factor, for example, an IP address. This will restrict backend access, and increase the security to your Magneto store.

5. Firewall 

There are two types of firewall that can be used to protect your Magneto Store:

  • WAF (Web Application Firewall) – that protects the store from web security vulnerabilities like SQLi, XSS, Brute-force attacks, Bot, spam, malware, DD0S, etc.
  • System/Network Firewall –this firewall will ban public access to everything except the webserver.
  • Additionally, SUCURI can be used too for continuous security monitoring & protection for your Magento store

These firewalls will protect your system and keep sensitive information safe.

By taking the following actions, the security of your online Magento store will be enhanced. And the vulnerability and attacks will be minimized. For more information regarding your eCommerce and in order to fool-proof the security on your Magento Store, talk to the experts- contact us today.

BRAND ROUND UP: COMMUNICATION POST-COVID

Communication has always been an integral part of a brand. It echoes the clear, authentic and consistent tone of your brand to the consumers. It most often offers insights, the brands goals and values and creates an intimate relationship between the brand and its consumers. With consumers returning back to the new normal, markets being slowed down and few even being shut down, it becomes important to communicate in the most apt way possible to your consumers. 

A few brands have successfully found their way to function in this ‘new normal.’ 

Tata:

Marketing Post-COVID, requires creativity and out of the box thinking. As seen in Tata Sampann campaign ‘Har Din Haldi, HarGhar Healthy,’ with an aim to promote Tata Sampann’s turmeric powder while still being in sync with the thoughts. Talking about the benefits of various Indian spices, including Turmeric that helps in boosting one’s immunity it launched the campaign. Additional collaboration with Pride of Cows mill in Mumbai, it stressed the importance of Haldi Doodh for immunity.  

KFC:

Aligning themselves with the new communication normal, KFC along with DDB launched the ‘KFC You Soon’ playlist. This was a creative campaign that serenaded its customers through a playlist. This film highlighted barcode scanners, dispensers, chairs, etc exclaiming how they’ve missed their consumers, the campaign further delves into the new norms it would follow including social distancing. 

Bacardi: 

Having a consistent tone is always important in brand communication. Bacardi has seemed to have found that with its latest campaign ‘Roomates’.  The film stays true to Bacardi’s light brand tone and features the story of three real roommates and how they make the most of their quarantine. Relatability is the emphasis of this campaign with the roommates doing at-home activities, the film further encourages people to do what makes them move even when the world takes a pause. 

Big Bazaar: 

Resonating with consumers, and creating a valuable message is what Big Bazaar does in it’s recent Ramadan Campaign. The Campaign titled as ‘Ibaadat Bhi, Hifaazat Bhi’ (prayers with safety), was created, shot and conceptualised during the lockdown. Echoing with the views of the consumers, Big bazaar further emphasised with its made at home campaign the importance to sanitize and maintain social distancing while still offering its festive greetings.

This pandemic has highlighted that consumer minds are ever-changing and brands need to adapt and adjust accordingly, thus, in order to strive in the Post-COVID era, brands need to invest and emphasize efforts on few things, they are:

  1. Social Media: Online activity has seen an increase and is being seen as a primary source of communication, marketers should note its advantage and create content accordingly.
  2. Remote customer service: Adjusting communication channels solely based on emails and apps will be important. Brands need to integrate their service team with online means to provide their consumers with seamless support.
  3. Educate your audience:  educating the public about sensitive information, will help build and retain trust with the consumers. 
  4. Communication needs to be empathetic- Being empathetic to consumers needs and fears will go a long way, messages and campaigns need to resonate with the thinking of the consumers to be successful post-COVID. 

Post-COVID, brands more importantly than ever need to adapt and adopt new communication strategies that will render success. Brands need to stay connected to both consumers and employees and be vocal, consistent, and add value with each campaign that it communicates. 

EMAIL MARKETING BEST PRACTICES FOR B2C BUSINESSES


Email marketing is an efficient tool when used correctly. Marketers swear by this technique as a revenue generic tactic. However, there is a fine line between overselling and underselling your offers through email marketing. It becomes vital to figure out the frequency to send your promotional emails.

According to a report by the Direct Marketing Association’s National Client Email, it shows that around 35% of marketers send up to two to three emails per month, while 19% just send about one email per month. In another survey conducted by Marketing Sherpa, it shows from the consumer’s point of view about 61% have said they don’t mind receiving one promotional email at least once a month, and 15% said they wouldn’t mind receiving one promotional email per day. The same study concluded stating that around 91% of the users have no issue with email marketing.

However, experts and the constant increase of unsubscribers say otherwise. So, how many emails are too many emails? A definite number cannot be given, but here are few factors to keep in mind while deciding on the frequency of your mails:

Industry stats

It is important to analyse your competition and see the frequency with which they send emails per week, noting their return-on-investment, and reach.

Nature of product or services

The number of emails one sends largely depends on the product or service one offers. Hence, it is seen that fashion brands can get away with sending 1 email per day, but it’s not the same for e-commerce companies.

Nature of the email

The goal of the email should be known. Is the email being sent for higher reach? Engagement? Or simply for CTR?

Consumers Decide

Keeping the user in the loop is important, hence offering an option to the consumer to signup for a weekly, monthly or daily update would be crucial too.

Data

Data should be analysed frequently in order to understand the opening rates, the number of subscriptions or unsubscription received, etc. Future adjustments can be made keeping these factors in mind

Engagement rates:

This rate is important in email marketing too. By understanding the engagement rate one can note, which content is preferred by the consumer. If an increase or decrease in the frequency of engagements needs to be done, and develop a well-rounded strategy.

A/B tests

Companies can stick to a testing approach to understand which plan works and which doesn’t, and as always it would be vital to keep an eye on data and its figures.

Hence, if companies keep in mind all these factors, developing an efficient and effective email marketing strategy will be easy, also one should keep updating themselves with trends they see in the industry. Approaches that work in 2020 similarly won’t work in 2021, and so on. Hence, updating along with the above-mentioned factors would be important for a marketer to follow.

BEST PRACTICES

Curated below is a list of marketing practices that a B2C company needs to follow to create their own efficient email marketing campaigns.

1. Send welcome emails

It is important right from the get-go for a company to keep in touch with its customers. Hence, a welcome email, either to a first-time shopper, a user who is prescribed to the newsletter, etc, will go a long way in increasing the engagement rate.

2. Integrate data-driven campaigns

The data available online and through past purchases of a consumer can help in understanding which strategy would work best for a particular user.

3. Focus on personalization

Marketing campaigns need to be relevant. This relevance starts with personalization. Perlization can be done just by inserting the user’s name, to when a prospects sign-up to receive emails to provide a poll to understand what the consumer is looking for. Is it sales alerts? Restock information? Newsletter updates? This can help in cutting out the spam and personalizing the emails.

4. Plan ahead, make a schedule

It is important to plan ahead. If one is sending recurring newsletter subscribers, even if it’s monthly, weekly, or daily, the marketer should stick to a consistent time, and ensure the goals are being met.

5. Stick to consistent branding

Email is a super-personal way to speak to an audience; hence the brand’s voice and values need to be made consistent while sending out promotional messages.

6. Make sure it renders correctly

Mobile is BIG. People are shopping more, browsing more, and buying more on mobile. This also means they’re checking their email on the go. Marketers need to ensure that their email templates are optimized for a mobile viewing experience–and any landing pages they direct to are also mobile-friendly.

7. Make sure your emails are appealing

Spam can be avoided by making your promotional messages appealing. By keeping your lists of subscribers clean, and making sure unsubscribers are being deleted, and not over-emailing any particular segment of your audience, can ensure that the emails are appealing.

8. Put CTAs and important information above the fold

For an email to be effective and drive conversions, one needs to get to the point fast. Inboxes are overwhelmed with promotions, it then becomes crucial to make sure you are explaining the main value proposition in the first section of the email and including a clean call-to-action without making anyone scroll.

9. Appeal to emotions, not logic

In B2C email marketing consumers are moved more by emotions than by logic. For a company to be in line with B2C email marketing best practices, one needs to ensure that your emails tug at your customers’ hearts.

10. Report on your email marketing campaigns

To have a truly successful email marketing program one needs to be able to know if the campaign is performing successfully. That means reporting, it is important to choose the right metrics, to get the data collected more efficiently. This data needs to be tracked and analysed to choose your best B2C email marketing campaigns.

In conclusion, the right email marketing strategy is one that is in accordance with industry best practices, one that sits well with your goals and appeals to your audience by providing immense value at all times.

what to do when blog traffic drops

What to do if your blog traffic suddenly drops

There comes a time for every marketer or site owner when you are faced with a sudden downside of your blog traffic. All the time, effort, and strategies that you put into creating the content, building an audience, planning the content marketing, and keeping your audience engaged, start to look like a waste. This is definitely a cause for alarm but not panic. Because this can be fixed and easily so.

Before you start, know that Google Analytics is going to be your invincible weapon for this fight.

If you are experiencing a traffic drop on your website blogs, then read on to know how you can take care of this situation in the smartest possible ways.

Study the numbers

No matter how bad they look on the analytics report, you must study them to identify where the problem lies. For example, if you read the line graph on the Blog Analytics report, you would clearly see a smooth drop, a sharp drop, or a contrasting rise and drop. Also, see the period (day or days) across which the drop took place. If you notice the graph coming back slowly after a sudden decrease, it is highly possible that there might have been a technical error on your site/page/server for that period.

Identify the sources

Depending on the kind of traffic that has dropped, you can look for a solution. Check if the source was direct, organic, paid, referral, or social. For instance, a drop in direct traffic means that your user behavior has changed and you need to up your game. If it was organic, then maybe check for a possibility of Google Penalty.

Know the users

Determine if the blog traffic is a result of new users or existing ones. For example, if new users are dropping then maybe it is an issue with your searchability. Then maybe you need to revise your keyword strategy. On the other hand, if it is existing users, then you probably need to check the site performance, speed, page errors etc. Accordingly, you also need to take a new approach to your blog content.

No matter what solution you take, always seek expert advice for the best possible results. 

5 Strategies you should consider while running ads on marketplaces

For every online retailer today, being present on leading marketplaces is a given. While the marketplace does their bit to boost sales for their sellers, the retailers also need to constantly upgrade their marketing techniques and strategies to be ahead of their competition. And one such activity to be seriously considered is advertising on marketplaces. Read on to discover a few techniques of marketplace management which can yield better results from your marketplace advertising.

Leverage the buyer’s intent

Most often than not, retailers place their product ads as a means of ‘awareness’. Shoppers on marketplaces are there with the intention of buying. While awareness is required but that could be saved for social ads or other newsfeed ads. Marketplace ads need to be more specific and ‘intent-driven’.

Make the most of keywords

Most leading marketplaces like Amazon have their own keyword tool. Like regular search engine optimization, this tool will also help you identify the right set of keywords you can use in your brand messaging and target users based on what they are looking for the most. This will not only make your ads more efficient but also help you drive better results.

Be clear about pricing

Your pricing strategy should be consistent and reflect on your advertising message. Whether you are offering a discount on your markup or bundling up products and offering a holistic price, your ads should be transparent and linear.

Optimize your targets

You can use both manual targeting and automatic targeting while developing your campaign. You can create a run a keyword campaign using manual targeting for better control and combine it with automatic targeting.

Content around context

Your ad copy needs to be in sync with the trend. For instance, a festive season and cannot be generic about the brand or a special feature. Rather, it should highlight the mood of the season and offer a purpose for the shopper for the particular time period.

Announce your offer

And we mean discounts. But discounts and freebies do the trick when they are pronounced out. Action words like ‘lightning deals’, ‘last X items remaining’, ‘going in X hours’  or bold, striking colors and images can make your offer look like one no shopper can refuse.

Social Media ROI Measuring and Managing

Social Media ROI Measuring and Managing

Did you know that more than 60% of consumers today rely on social media before making a purchase decision? And about 71% of such consumers will more likely make a purchase based on referrals from the social crowd. That goes to say, that a lot of your business success rides on your social media presence.

Needless to say, social media activities are a big investment for businesses and it is essential that you measure your social media ROI to get a fair assessment of your efforts.

Measuring and managing social media ROI

To assess the results of your efforts, you must first set your decide what you want to measure- Brand awareness (traffic/followers) or lead generation or sales (conversions).  Accordingly, you can measure each KPI.

Here are a few things you can start with:

Website Traffic – Are your social media activities increasing your site traffic? Do you have more returning visitors or new users? If you see a constant increase in the traffic, then you should continue with your strategy. If not, then you might need to relook at your approach.

Followers – Do you see an increased number of followers on your social media page? Is it because of your regular marketing efforts or a particular campaign? Although more followers do not directly translate to increased sales, an increased outreach would mean brand loyalty and more awareness, which can prove to be beneficial in the long run

Conversions – Is your social presence resulting in increased sales? Or is it a particular campaign that leads to conversions? Look at your Page Analytics data to determine your leads and what is driving them.

Know your numbers

The numbers that you extract can tell you a lot more than direct results of your effort. You can also analyze the data on engagement, reach, impressions, views etc. Once you have all the data, compare the numbers (results) against your expectations and that of your competitors.

To monitor all your social media activities, you can either use the inbuilt tools provided by each platform or use comprehensive analysis tools like Google Analytics.

While you might be doing everything to boost your social presence, the dynamics of social platforms keep changing almost every day. With the help of a social media company and industry experts, you can enjoy increased ROI from your marketing investments

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