Get More Done by Doing Less
All-in-one marketing automation platforms are a good fit for eCommerce businesses planning to increase sales and attract more customers to their online store. In particular, 64% of the surveyed eCommerce companies name higher sales among marketing automation and 37%, increasing the number of eCommerce store visitors. Getting these benefits seems achievable with either leading marketing automation platforms, like Salesforce Marketing Cloud, or a wide variety of less widespread alternative solutions present on the CRM market. To help eCommerce businesses navigate the market and make an informed choice, we present the following checklist.
Must-have features of marketing automation software for eCommerce
Feature-rich solutions for marketing automation entail impressive benefits and similarly notable expenses. That’s why, when considering a marketing automation solution, eCommerce companies don’t need to purchase all the features available but choose those resonating with their business needs most (e.g., features for email and mobile marketing or social media marketing). From our experience, the following features of marketing automation platforms are most in-demand:
- It is easily integrated with an eCommerce platform.
Integrating a marketing automation platform with an eCommerce platform allows retailers with a large customer base to use customers’ personal and online behavior data to make marketing activities better targeted and more personalized. Such integration brings benefits like improved sales, upselling, and cross-selling opportunities. Thus, when choosing a marketing automation platform, eCommerce retailers must consider how easy it can be integrated with their eCommerce platform, whether the marketing automation platform is heavily dependent on partner integrations and API connectors.
- It automates customer segmentation.
To make marketing activities relevant to particular customer groups, a marketing automation platform should perform criteria-based customer segmentation. An adequately segmented customer base regarding customers’ age, gender, location, and other criteria allows marketing teams to personalize email and website content and adjust marketing activities (like digital advertising) to different customer segments. Customer segmentation leads to higher email open and click-through rates, better upselling and cross-selling, and increased repeat customers.
- It automates email marketing.
To facilitate eCommerce marketing teams’ daily work, including sending tons of emails, a marketing automation platform should have email automation features. Such features help hit two main targets: easy creation of visually appealing emails and tracking email marketing campaigns. These goals are achieved with customizable email templates and email analytics accordingly.
- It embraces social media marketing.
To attract new customers and successfully interact with current ones via social media, like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, eCommerce businesses should choose a marketing automation platform that embraces social media marketing. Features for social media marketing allow creating appealing content (e.g., announcements of new products and services) for the company’s followers on social networks, automate social media advertising, promote marketing campaigns, or monitor company mentions in social media. If customers share their feedback on social media, marketing teams can adjust their product/service positioning.
- It automates mobile marketing.
Since 87% of consumers shop through their mobile devices, a marketing automation platform needs to have mobile marketing features. Provided that your customers are adequately segmented, mobile marketing is your way to engage your customers via targeted texts and push notifications. This mainly works well for omnichannel retailers. For example, they can use the geofencing functionality to send location-based mobile notifications and prompt their online customers to offline shopping.
- It automates customer communication scenarios.
To help eCommerce businesses successfully manage various customer communication channels, a marketing automation platform should create automated customer communication scenarios. The tools that make such automation possible allow mapping out a customer communication path for different customer segments, like new shoppers or cart abandoners. For example, a cart abandoner may receive a reminder in a day after they abandoned the cart, a push notification in 3 days, and an email with a discount code a week after the purchase wasn’t completed.
As you see, a marketing automation platform for eCommerce should deliver targeted messages via different channels and personalize the customer journey by making customer communication efficient, relevant, and responsive. It helps eCommerce businesses make customers more engaged and satisfied with their shopping experience, ultimately resulting in higher sales.