Four smart ways to make your eCommerce brand stand out from the crowd

- February 10, 2022 4 MIN READ

So, you’ve embraced the online revolution and kicked off an eCommerce business, only to find yourself surrounded by similar brands all fighting for the same customer base … what can you do? It’s time to really make your brand stand out from the crowd, writes Shayne Tilley, head of marketing at 99designs by Vista.

It seems like just yesterday we were all talking about the importance of brands pivoting online. While having a digital presence continues to be a business essential two years into the pandemic, now there is a different focus weighing on the minds of eCommerce retailers – and that’s differentiation.

How to build an unforgettable eCommerce brand

As more and more businesses continue to race to the digital high street, it’s becoming harder than ever to stand out. Therefore building a solid brand for your eCommerce business has never been more critical to ensure you make a lasting impression on customers old and new.

This goes much deeper than just a jazzy logo and catchy brand name. It’s the unique personality of your business, how customers perceive and talk about you, and how you add value to their experience.

Here’s four ways you can make your brand one to remember.

1. Nail your branding

The first thing you need to think about is your branding. Crafting a brand identity that is unique to your business and its goals is what’s going to set you apart from other businesses.

Before you dive in, you should ask yourself some key questions about your business:

  • What makes you unique from your competitors?
  • What is your mission and what values drive you?

Additionally, make sure you’re crystal clear on who your target market is by asking yourself:

  • Who am I trying to reach?
  • Who is my ideal customer?

Having this clarity on your brand identity will also enable you to make effective decisions on your visual brand assets from your logo, brand colours and typography, right through to your tone of voice and brand personality. Additionally, it will enable you to create a consistent brand that shoppers will easily recognise and connect with across different channels – both physical and digital.

Online eCommerce store optimised for all devices - laptop, tablet, smartphone

2. Perfect your digital shop front

Your digital storefront is often your first opportunity to create a lasting impression with prospective customers. Not only does it need to look good, but it also needs to motivate them to ultimately buy your products.

With research revealing that almost 2 in 5 people will exit a website if they don’t like the design, it’s vital that your eCommerce website be sleek in appearance and smooth in operation.

When it comes to the design of your website, less is always more. Steer away from too many popups, banners or clashing design elements that may confuse customers and distract them from making a purchase. Keep your design simple, clear and easy to navigate on any device. With more and more customers shopping directly from their phones, it’s also important that your website be functional on different sized screens.

Present your products in their best light with professional, high quality photos and a healthy variety of details. This removes any guesswork for your customers and will help them feel more confident in their purchase.

Make it a priority to ensure your branding is consistent across all pages of your website. With so much choice online now, customers want to feel reassured that they are shopping from established and reputable businesses, and this consistency will help instil that trust.

3. Tell a story with your packaging

In the absence of that in-person experience, your packaging is paramount for making a lasting impact. After all, it will likely be the only physical interaction your customers may be able to have with your business beyond your products.

Take a more comprehensive approach to your packaging design instead of simply shipping your products in a plain box. This is an opportunity to tell your brand story, communicate your key messages and build a deeper connection with your ideal customers.

Consider all elements of the packaging itself – from the outer, to the inner, and anything else you could include that might catch their eye. For example, inserting beautifully designed postcards could provide both a chance for you to give more information on your brand or products, as well as provide a call to action to share across social media, tapping into the unboxing trend.

Make sure all your brand elements are consistent across your packaging, but don’t be afraid to have fun with it. If you’re ever stuck for inspiration, look to design trends to give you some ideas of how you can make delivery day a treat for your customers.

4. Adding value through your social media profiles

Social media is increasingly being optimised for eCommerce. TikTok, Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram all now feature in-app shopping features helping bridge the gap between discovery and purchase for commerce brands.

But social media isn’t just another avenue for you to sell your products. It is an excellent (and cost effective) way to build meaningful and long-lasting relationships with your customers through content and authentic interactions.

Whether you use how-to video guides, infographics explaining more about your product, blog articles that shed light on a topic relevant to your industry, or simply inspirational imagery, ask yourself: What content can you create to add value to your customer’s experience with your brand and your products?

Your social inboxes can also double as additional customer support, giving you unparalleled insight upon which to tweak and amend your offering to better suit their needs.

Whether it’s educational or aspirational, elevating their interaction with you from transactional to emotional can ensure your brand stays in their mind long after purchase.

With shoppers more digitally connected than ever, expectations of online brands are at an all time high. By investing in and elevating your brand, your eCommerce business will be able to easily meet and even exceed these expectations long into the digital revolution.

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