“Branding is often regarded as a fluffy topic,” wrote Avid Larizadeh at a recent Forbes article. “It’s de-prioritized since it’s neither tangible, nor readily quantifiable and goes more to the creative forms than left-brain entrepreneurs. But dismissing the value of branding is a huge mistake, particularly for customer facing companies. Branding is crucial to the success of any enterprise.”
For online retailers, brand may be described in a few ways.
First, there’s the brand as clients see it. This”brand” is, in a sense, a shop’s reputation. It is how shoppers consider a company, and it has the ideas or concepts that they associate with that enterprise. To help clarify this original branding definition, focus on the very first things that come to mind when you think about Amazon, Apple, Macy’s, Nike, or Starbucks.
Odds are great that you were familiar with all these five firms — all of which operate some kind of an online retail company, by the way — and for every one that you have a”brand” impression.
Another definition of manufacturer has to do with the way the company wishes to be perceived. You know that each and every customer will form some brand impressions every time they interact with your shop, so in case you could select the ideas, theories, or feelings those clients associate with your company, the things you choose would be your company’s brand or at least its preferred brand.
Branding as a business activity could be thought of as the act of conveying your shop’s desired brand to customers and prospective clients through business operations, marketing, and customer support.
Even once it’s been defined. Brand may be a squishy idea. So what follows are four additional reasons which each and every ecommerce entrepreneur and manager should spend some time thinking about branding.
Your Brand Can Help You Manage Your Company
It might appear odd to think that something abstract like a brand could be a business management tool, but a lot of companies use a brand as a method of directing business decisions from the goods chosen to individuals hired to clients served.
I am aware of a multi-channel merchant, as an instance, which has set up four”core values” as a part of its brand. These include the notions of service, ethics, relationships, and continuous improvement. If this retailer makes business decisions, it appears to its core brand values to direct it.
By way of instance, a customer wanted to return a pair of sneakers after 60 days. The shopper had bought with the merchant before and had tried to give the shoes a fair attempt. The merchant’s written return policy stated that things could be returned up to 30 days. Notwithstanding that written policy, the merchant processed the return, gave the customer a complete refund, and even paid for the return shipping. Why? Because relationships and service were part of this retailer’s brand. And you can bet that the consumer will come back and make another purchase because his new impression of this merchant is positive.
Similarly, the identical retailer is in the practice of refunding shoppers a part of shipping fees if the actual cost of shipping ends up being less than the price quoted on the merchant’s site. This is a simple management choice for the merchant to make, as it’s congruent with the provider’s brand values, especially with ethics.
Once a company has defined what it stands for it will become simpler to make business decisions.
Your Brand Can Assist Engage Clients
Brand and the way a merchant defines its brand could be a driving force behind marketing campaigns and, thus, a powerful way to engage clients.
For instance, think about a merchant that needs customer service to be a valuable part of its brand. This merchant might go out of its way to be useful or helpful to shoppers. Subsequently, this need to be helpful will inform marketing decisions.
A retailer of sporting goods could publish a set of YouTube videos which show how to swing a baseball bat. The videos wouldn’t be about promoting bats or baseballs, but instead would focus on being useful to the viewer as an extension of their business’s brand. These videos will engage potential clients and when the time does come to buy sporting goods those shoppers that profited from the videos may be more inclined to buy from this retailer.
Similarly, a merchant with a brand targeted at providing customer support, will do more to answer questions or concerns about Facebook, Twitter, or other social networking sites, and may invest a larger amount of resources into answering emails or supplying live chat. In all these situations, a defined brand advises marketing choices.
Your Brand Could Make Your Business Profitable
New or small ecommerce companies often focus most advertising attention on getting new clients. There are certainly plenty of good reasons for this approach. A new business almost by definition will not have established clients so all of its first marketing will definitely be focused on earning new business.
New customer acquisition and brand new client promotion, however, often have the lowest return-on-investment, so that focusing on new building will frequently make a company more profitable in the long run.
Perhaps among the most significant customer-retention studies released this year comes from Adobe. Titled, The ROI from Marketing to Existing Online Customers, the report shows that long-term client relationships are a lot more beneficial to online retailers.
Adobe discovered that about 8% of online shoppers are coming or repeat clients, but that those 8% accounted for 41 percent of online revenue. In america, new clients represented a typical online earnings of $2.06 per trip, though a shopper returning for another purchase represented an average online earnings of $5.22 per trip, and a repeat buyer returning for a third or fourth buy represented an average online earnings of $10.24 per trip, according to Adobe.
Thinking about your shop’s brand and focusing on distributing that brand to clients, may help your organization build long-term client relationships, which in turn will likely be more profitable.
Your Brand Can Save You Money
A well-defined brand might also be a defense against spending money or spending money on the wrong things.
There’s a sense wherein a well-defined brand is a truly well-conceived enterprise. Having defined what your shop is truly about can help you avoid spending errors.
By way of example, there’s a retailer whose brand contains a focus on traditional family values. That retailer ordered in many of zombie-themed products during the October holiday season this past year. The items featured pictures of the undead, blood, bloody weapons, and similar. Unsurprisingly, the products did not sell well for the merchant, and a few clients, who had a strong sense of traditional family values, were offended. Zombies weren’t compatible with the brand that the merchant was building, and checking that brand before making the zombie buy could have saved the merchant money.