retail-strategy-12D – Is Customer-Centric Marketing the Best for Online Retailers?

Customer-Centric Marketing – Good for Online Retailers? 

Customers are the key to any company’s success. But reaching and keeping your target base can be tricky. This is especially a problem if you’re an online retailer. 

While there are various marketing forms online retailers need to use, customer-centric is one to consider in your retail marketing strategy. This is because it focuses on your customer’s experience. 

Despite its importance, some might still be hesitant to use it. This is usually because it seems irrelevant for a virtual shop. But this is far from the truth. Below, you’ll learn more about this marketing type and how it helps online retailers. 

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What’s Customer-Centric Marketing?

As previously mentioned, this form revolves around making a positive customer experience. This directly examines a buyer’s needs and how you can help them. 

With physical shops, it’s often easier to implement this marketing type. This is because people will actually interact with each other. But it can also be done virtually, just in a different way. 

Should I Combine it With Other Marketing Types?

Customer-centric marketing is useful, but you shouldn’t solely rely on it. While it can bring positive change, it only focuses on certain aspects. You want to also involve other marketing options to further your reach. 

Channel-Focused 

This allows you to work with a third party to market your goods. With this, you can better reach other platforms that you might otherwise not be able to. It also helps get the word out about your brand and show you’re a serious business. 

Content Marketing

This option focuses on making materials (like blog posts or social media images) to generate brand interest. While it doesn’t exclusively highlight a certain business, it’s meant to further encourage viewers to check one out. This is usually cleverly hidden in a link or keyword. 

Content marketing is a great way to improve engagement rates. This is because it gives you the chance to creatively introduce customers without them necessarily realizing it. The more they engage with these posts, the more likely they’ll visit your online shop for more information. 

Indirect Marketing

Before you can even focus on building a strong customer-centric marketing plan, you need to have a good base. You can build this through indirect marketing. 

Indirect marketing is designed to help customers trust your business. It’s meant to show them that you’re an authority in the industry. This option uses influencer services, SEO link building, loyalty programs, and reviews. 

How to Use Customer-Centric Marketing Online

Monitor Users

If you want to make a great customer experience, you need to understand who your audience is. To do this, you’ll want to get as much data about them as possible. This includes demographics, the average amount they tend to spend, and pages they often click into. 

You can use online metric tools to assist with this. While you don’t want to collect private information, they will help you give a general overview. 

While cheap and free options can be helpful, invest in good marketing solutions if you’re serious. These will give you incredible insight and help you better understand how to adjust things. 

Be sure though to update this information constantly. Data changes regularly, so what is true one week might be different in another. You want to review these metrics daily and do weekly reviews to see if things need to change. 

Survey Your Customers

Besides doing research behind the scenes, reach out to your audience. Get to know them personally and ask questions. This will give you incredible insight that metric tools can never provide. 

One way to understand customer thoughts is to send out an actual survey. This could be in-store or through email marketing. The survey can include questions like:

  • What is your overall opinion of our brand?
  • In what ways do you think we can improve?
  • Do you think the pricing is fair?
  • What makes us stand out from the competition? 

To further encourage customers to fill these out, offer an incentive. This could be a discount for every person who fills it out. You might also think about a major prize. For instance, their name will be put into a drawing for a trip or shopping spree if they complete it. 

As you get this information, use it to create a general customer profile. This will give you a better idea of who you’re trying to serve. Some aspects to include in this are age, financial situation, general life goals, and online behaviors. 

Build a Good Site

Since your online platform is the only way customers will interact with you, make sure it’s well-built. One that’s slow to load or difficult to find will deter potential customers. 

Use the information you have about your target audience to figure out the best site design and layout. Make sure that they follow your brand’s theme. If you display something the total opposite, it will confuse people. It will also make you look disorganized.

Additionally, you might use the service of a professional designer. They can create a stunning site for you and include useful built-in marketing metrics. This way, you can see what links shoppers click, what pages are popular, and the geographic locations that most of your customers are from. 

Keep Up With Social Media

Social media is a great way to stay in touch with customers. It’s a unique method to show off your products and services while interacting with shoppers. 

To make excellent customer-centric posts, focus on a few things. One is evergreen content. You don’t always want to be extremely specific. This can bore customers. Instead, post relatable but general content. This can build interest, and customers can visit your online shop for more detailed information. 

Also, display photos of your products and links to them. Beautiful photos will catch someone’s attention, and you only have a few seconds to keep that interest. By adding a link, you can keep quickly building on that interest. Some platforms (like Instagram) even have shopping filters built into them. This way, a customer can buy directly from your social media page. 

Be sure to also chat directly with your customers. If they leave comments or messages, be prompt to reply. This shows you monitor your pages and appreciate their interest. It also builds brand engagement on the platforms because it shows you’re active. 

Are My Customer-Centric Marketing Tactics Working?

There are a few ways to tell whether your marketing methods are making a positive impact. One of the top methods is to view engagement. 

Do you notice more followers or likes on social media? Are you getting more online purchases? If these happen, that’s a positive sign that your customer-centric marketing works. 

However, if you find that engagement is low, or you haven’t met your set goals, change things up. This could be designing a better website or adjusting your target audience. 

Customer-centric marketing is important for online retailers to use. It won’t only help you understand your target audience, but can help to build online customer loyalty. With these tips, you’ll easily be able to figure out the best tactics for your business.

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