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Planning Vs. Reality – 5 Typical Ecommerce Positioning Challenges

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Planning Vs. Reality - 5 Typical Ecommerce Positioning Challenges

Few industries have as much potential for success as online sales, but successful eCommerce positioning can be challenging when your plans don’t match reality.

You know exactly what that means because you’ve seen it already. It’s the LinkedIn ad that has nothing to do with your job or the tech you use. Or it’s a fad diet supplement on Instagram when you’re really after those futuristic earrings or the latest kicks held up by your favorite sneakerhead. Getting positioning right means it’s easier to understand your market and get those ads and drip campaigns right. 

It sets the tone, ensures you’ve got the right audience, and helps execution turn into conversions. Your business deserves that, so here are five common positioning challenges and how your reality might look different.

Awareness: Your business and the hungry market

The first step in most customer value journeys is building awareness of your products and brand. You’re doing a lot of heavy lifting in the eCommerce space. By not being in traditional retail and competing with brands around the world, you’re the top advocate for your products and the best place for people to learn about you.

When facing that, many companies come out with a core plan. They say: I’ll target a hungry market that wants exactly what I’m selling because everyone is always shopping online!

The reality is that it’s hard to find a hungry market, and customers may be buying a lot online, but they’re not shopping in many different places. Your best audience is out there, and they are hungry, but you will have to research and find them. Then, you place your message in front of them. This can happen in a variety of ways and one of the most advertised options is buying lists. Unfortunately, there’s so much data available that it can be hard to get started with a reasonable and narrow target.

Addressing this positioning challenge starts with a review of the current market. Look at competitors and brands that you like that are successful. If your product is in a new category or you have a specific position you haven’t seen elsewhere, look for similar approaches in other market segments. Focus research on where potential shoppers are. For those of you with established brands looking to rekindle interest or gain new markets, slim down where you A/B test to ensure you’ve got reliable attribution.

Awareness is an immediate need and something worth a long-term investment. Look for ways to solve specific issues for your customers today and showcase yourself as a reliable, long-term alternative. Tackle the bigger emotional hooks behind what you offer — improving relationships or giving people back their free time instead of accomplishing a specific task — so that you’re not trying to fit a narrow product-and-problem niche.

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Conversion strategy: Leaning on promotional support

After people know about you and can find you, it’s time to start selling. That’s the bulk of an eCommerce business’s operations, and most plan on letting their products speak for themselves. I mean, you make a great product, and people should be able to recognize that immediately, right?

In reality, not so much.

ECommerce is crowded, and there’s a lot of differentiation that needs to happen to promote your products to generate leads and sales. This work includes how you show off your products as well as the broader offers your store makes. If your product is better, but a competitor has a more compelling offer, you may still lose out on the sale. You need messaging that resonates with your audience and keeps them engaged. Even if someone doesn’t convert when they see your first message or content, it can put you top-of-mind for when they are willing to buy.

Where should you start? Create relevant offers for your different audiences. Target people with something they could use or enjoy. Be sure to consider their budget and initial offers that may get your foot in the door for a repeat purchase. Here are some elements to remember:

  • Free offers need to provide value and answer questions or propose problems to solve.
  • Provide your audience a low-risk option if your business thrives on repeat purchases.
  • Explain why someone should take a chance on you. 
  • Match offers to the perceived value. If you’re selling coffee and don’t want to make a free offer or a $10 bag, be sure that the big package you sell for $90 feels like it is worth much more.
  • Help your audience feel like they “get their money’s worth” at every step

Create a few core offers and promote these everywhere. That way, your audience gets what they need no matter how they find you, and no one feels upset for using the banner discount and not the Facebook one that arrives a week after their purchase because of retargeting. Simplicity is an easy way to keep products flowing and keep shoppers happy.

Subscriptions: Not one-size-fits-all

One of the more common plans any eCommerce company hears today is that everyone offers a subscription, and you should too. In reality, it doesn’t make much sense for every business, and customers don’t want it from every business. Sometimes people just want to buy once and get everything they need without signing up for continual charges on their accounts or credit cards.

You address the subscription question with detailed research into what people want you to offer and what you can offer. Typically, subscriptions require high SKU counts, which comes with a lot of consistent ordering and capital investment. Increasing SKU and inventory count also increase your inbound shipping, warehousing/storage, and fulfillment costs

The question to ask your business and finance partners is: Will a subscription make up for that?

If the answer is unclear, review potential recurring options and product lifetimes to see where you might have an add-on instead of a consistent replacement. That approach can allow you to create a subscription-like element or feeling without needing a high volume of SKUs. 

Here, you would tie a product or option with a specific order number. So, everyone gets the same item in package two regardless of when they sign up for the service. If person A signs up in August, they get the item in September. When person B signs up in December, they get this item in January. You control the flow and don’t have to order high volumes of new SKUs monthly.

Excitement: Not everyone is the ‘fun’ one

Most people getting into the eCommerce space are very excited about their operations and products. They feel customers are going to be just as excited! Positioning often relies on that level of excitement to encourage sales and relationships without necessarily building up that excitement for a novel audience.

But what if you sell something more helpful or relaxing than exciting? What if the biggest feeling is a sense of relief when your package hits the front porch? Or what would you do if a customer doesn’t know you well enough to be excited before they use your product for the first time?

The reality is that your business must make a case to customers unfamiliar with the brand who have limited attention spans, even for a product category they enjoy. The emotions you want to elicit must be created and nurtured across multiple instances. And excitement isn’t always how people react. The market for home delivery of pet food and meals is more than $1.67 billion — while the pups may all be excited, many owners are just glad that the food arrives and they don’t need to rush to the store.

That proves you don’t have to be the “fun” brand to build out an empire. And you can’t force people to view you as the fun brand, anyway. Get to know your company through the eyes of your customers. Start with a hard look at your brand and products. How do existing customers talk about you? How do they talk about your competitors? What do they want that’s different from competitors that you can tackle? 

Use those answers to create a difference for your brand. It might be the excitement about being the hot new thing, or you could uncover an angle even more lucrative.

Reviews: Requires more than love

One final area to touch on is how products spread. We’ve all been told for more than a decade that word-of-mouth has better returns than advertising. In the eCommerce space, this translates to reviews being a top way to generate confidence in a product and convert those eyeballs. The trouble can be getting the reviews you need.

Many eCommerce owners will tell themselves, “People will love my product so much that they come back to my website just to fill out our review and comment sections, no matter where I hide those on my site.” So, they add whatever integration or toolkit is native to their eCommerce platform that comes up first in the plug-in search for “reviews.” 

Those elements get stuck on a page randomly, and then the mission accomplished banner is hung.

Maybe you get lucky, and the right comments live next to your products in an easy-to-use menu. Or you get it wrong, and money flows down the drain because no one can find or understand the 12-star review platform.

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Reviews are golden for eCommerce because they can drive conversions and give you shareable quotes. You also get feedback for what isn’t working (just as important). Generating reviews, however, takes a plan. People are willing to provide reviews, but you’ve got to ask and make it easy for people to answer. Here are a few things to help.

First, put reviews on product pages and ensure the platform is understandable at a glance. Let people leave detailed items, rate by stars, or even add photos. Don’t make a system that’s too cumbersome or asks for details people don’t want to use. Requiring a registered account could prevent people from leaving their thoughts.

When you ask, make sure it is at an appropriate time. The post-sale follow-up should occur after people have received your product and when they’ve had enough time to try it. Use the same channels that your other interactions followed — so if you sent confirmation and shipping status via text, use text to ask for a review. You may also want to try different review types. If someone bought your product via Instagram, consider asking for a post or comment. That might drive more people to your sales channels and yield better conversions than a review on your website.

The trick here is to keep asking your newest buyers and test different options to see what increases the number of reviews you receive and where these reviews best impact conversions.

Your follow-up

ECommerce businesses are primarily marketing and sales machines. This will take up much more of your team’s time than product development, procurement, and fulfillment. That means positioning is at the heart of your success. While we’ve looked at common concerns around emotions, reviews, sales options, and chasing the subscription wave, those are only the first steps to help you succeed throughout the Customer Value Journey.

This framework will help you craft a plan based on your business and current capabilities. ECommerce is exciting. The tools that allow you to sell and succeed are fascinating. Use that potential to create something amazing to drive you forward with a purpose. Your bottom line will thank you.


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Everything You Need to Know About Google Search Essentials (formerly Google Webmaster Guidelines)

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Everything You Need to Know About Google Search Essentials (formerly Google Webmaster Guidelines)

One of the most important parts of having a website is making sure your audience can find your site (and find what they’re looking for).

The good news is that Google Search Essentials, formerly called Google Webmaster Guidelines, simplifies the process of optimizing your site for search performance.

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Salesforce rolls out new edition of Marketing Cloud for small businesses

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Salesforce summer 2023 release: The business executive's guide

Today Salesforce announced Marketing Cloud Growth, an edition of Marketing Cloud designed specifically for small businesses.

With help from AI, this edition makes it easy for marketers to segment audiences, create and execute email campaigns from text to image, optimize campaign performance and create unified customer profiles. It also has a prompt builder that can store and manage known reliable prompts for organizations.

Dig deeper: 70% of SMB marketers willing to pay more for tools with AI or automation

Salesforce developed the new edition by looking at the most common use cases for which small businesses frequenty don’t have the people or resources. This includes things like personalizing campaigns and advanced testing.

The company is also letting small businesses (those with fewer than 200 employees) that have Sales or Service Enterprise Edition “get started with Data Cloud at no cost.” Marketing Cloud Growth will initially be available in the U.S. and Canada and is expected to roll out to Europe, the Middle East and Asia by the end of the year.

Why we care. First of all, small businesses need all the help they can get. This creates an opportunity to start using AI within a centralized marketing workflow rather than importing content from independent generative AI tools. Perhaps it’s also a sign of Salesforce moving to compete with platforms (can we say HubSpot?) that more overtly court SMB clients.

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Elevate Your YouTube Channel: Top 4 Video Editing Tools

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Elevate Your YouTube Channel: Top 4 Video Editing Tools

Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools

Launched in 2005, YouTube now stands as the second largest search engine after Google.

Almost 2.7 billion people use YouTube worldwide every month and 87.7% of those users access it on their mobile phones.

Owing to the large number of video content available on the platform, you want to ensure that yours stands out.

To make it happen, you need to master effective content creation tips, use fantastic lighting, and invest in powerful video editing software.

There are tons of editing tools on the market that promise amazing results. 

To help you cut through the noise, I’ve curated a list of the 4 best YouTube video editing software.

Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, there’s something for you. Keep reading.

1. Movavi Video Editor

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Top on the list is the Movavi Video Editor, one of the best YouTube video editing software for beginners.

It enables you to create compelling videos using advanced tools like audio correction, motion tracking, and chroma key without requiring any technical knowledge.

Additionally, you’ll find several ready-made YouTube intro videos and a large library of background music and audio clips.

Although the user interface is easy to navigate, Movavi still provides video tutorials to make you feel confident while editing.

Movavi runs on Windows (versions 7 to 11) and Mac OS X (10.15 or higher).

Key Features

  • AI background remover: Replaces backgrounds without a green screen
  • AI motion tracker: Sticks effects and images on moving objects
  • Precise frame cuts: Makes cuts with precision and attention-grabbing montages in one click
  • Color correction: Boosts colors so viewers can stay glued to your YouTube channel
  • Overlay effect: Offers 13 blending modes to create professional-looking videos
  • 4k resolution: Saves videos in ultra-high quality form
  • YouTube Integration: Saves you time by sharing videos directly to YouTube

Pricing

Movavi offers a generous free plan and three paid plans with different sets of features. Here are the prices for various plans it offers:

  • Free
  • Video Editor: $49.95/year
  • Video Editor + Effect Packs: $155.95/year
  • Video Suite + Effect Packs: $94.95/year
1708399564 966 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools1708399564 966 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools

Usability

Easy to use

Tool Level

Beginner/Intermediate

2. Adobe Premiere Pro

1708399565 365 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools1708399565 365 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools

If you’re looking for the best YouTube video editing software that can transform a basic clip into a ready-to-upload video, Adobe Premiere Pro is your best bet. 

It integrates with all the apps in Adobe Creative Cloud to help you streamline your workflow.

Adobe Premiere Pro boasts an extensive range of features, from color correction tools and visual effects to collaboration tools for teams. 

Also, you can optimize the export settings to preserve the quality of your YouTube videos when you share them online. 

Although Premiere Pro is popular among professional video editors, follow the video steps for beginners provided on the platform to learn how to use it. All you need is a powerful computer and willingness to study the available tutorials.

The app is compatible with Windows (10 or later) and macOS Monterey (version 12 or later).

Key Features

  • Text-based editing: Removes pauses with ease
  • Project templates: Retains assets, colors, and branding across multiple projects
  • Speech-to-text conversion: Automatically creates captions and transcripts in over 18 languages
  • Auto reframe: Automatically detects and adjusts aspect ratios to easily upload videos to YouTube
  • Adobe stock library: Offers access to stock video footage, photos, and over 75,000 audio tracks and remix the length to fit your video

Pricing

Adobe Premier Pro offers two paid plans. Here are the details:

  • Premiere Pro: $29.99/month
  • Creative Cloud All Apps: $59.99/month
1708399565 222 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools1708399565 222 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools

Usability

Has a steep learning curve

Tool Level

Intermediate/Advanced

3. Shotcut

1708399565 295 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools1708399565 295 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools

Available on Linux, Windows, and macOS, Shotcut is a comprehensive YouTube video editing software solution. 

It supports various video and audio files, including AVI, WAV, and MP4.

The video editing software is great for complex projects as it allows you to combine several audio, image, and video files into one video. 

Also, editing on the platform doesn’t follow a chronological order; you can make changes at any point.

Shotcut may not be the best editing tool for new content creators because of the learning curve. 

However, the platform has a video editing guide, including a community of Shotcut users who are willing to assist you.

Key Features

  • Native timeline editing: Supports all video and audio formats, including 4k and 8k resolutions
  • Cross-platform editing: Gives you the option to start a project on macOS and switch to Windows without hassles
  • Video effects: Offers built-in effects like auto-rotate, white balancing, timeline fader, and 360° video filters, without installing any plugins
  • Display and monitoring: Ability to preview videos in low resolution to improve the speed of real-time effects
  • Keyframing: Option to define the start and finish points of effects along the video timeline such as transition, sound, and brightness or contrast

Pricing

 Shotcut is completely free to use as it’s an open-source software solution

Usability

It has a steep learning curve

Tool Level

Intermediate

4. Lightworks

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If you’re looking to create the best videos in a short time, Lightworks is the way to go. 

It’s the best YouTube video editing software for beginners who are willing to learn video editing as they grow their YouTube channels.

Similar to Shotcut, the platform is loaded with all the tools you need to go from a beginner to a pro.

You can edit, color correct, add titles, and more using the drag-and-drop interface. 

Also, it’s compatible with YouTube video format and resolution for ease of uploading content.

All versions of Lightworks can work on Windows (8 and later), macOS (10.14 and later), and Linux.

Key Features

  • Universal timeline: Accommodates video footage of any quality, size, or frame rate
  • Flawless audio editing: Offers various audio effects and the option to sync with video for an immersive experience
  • Visual effects: Offers a simplified suite of over 700 customizable motion graphics and titles for easy to advanced editing
  • Easy export and share: Allows you to share videos on YouTube directly from the platform

Pricing

Here are the pricing plans offered by Lightworks.

  • Free
  • Create: $9.99/month
  • Pro: $23.99/month
1708399565 484 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools1708399565 484 Elevate Your YouTube Channel Top 4 Video Editing Tools

Usability

Easy to use

Tool Level

Beginners/Intermediate/Advanced

Pro Tip: According to Attrock guide, the best video maker can offer training resources for non-technical users. This is particularly designed for video marketers who have no high skills in video creation and editing.

Choosing the Best YouTube Video Editing Software

Getting the best YouTube video editing software shouldn’t cost a fortune. 

Platforms like Shotcut and Lightworks offer free tools for both beginners and expert editors.

However, if your YouTube channel is already monetized and you’re willing to spend money on a super-advanced tool, Premiere Pro will be ideal.

Lastly, if you’re ready to level up your video editing game, try Movavi today. You’ll save money while accessing advanced editing features.


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