The site has to be constantly monitored, updated and optimized to reflect current product offers. In addition to being visually inviting and easy to navigate, you have all the back-end issues to worry about and the technical performance of the site demands constant attention.
Away from your online presence, you might have lots of other things to keep up with, like order fulfillment, customer support issues, inventory management, other marketing activities and a thousand other things that can go wrong if left unattended.
You can only juggle so many things at once and there are only so many hours in a day — wouldn’t it help a lot if some things could just take care of themselves?
Marketing automation in ecommerce is here to help. By setting up certain actions, responses and processes triggered to run automatically, you gain time to focus on the big picture and grow your business with no compromise in the level of quality you deliver to your customers.
In fact, ecommerce is the ideal showcase for marketing automation tools that can take care of simple, repetitive but important actions that help to keep everything going. Want to build better customer relationships, streamline the conversion process, take a shortcut to growth and boost your bottom line? Here are four benefits of marketing automation for ecommerce.
Deliver a better customer experience
“Customer experience” can be a vague and general term, but let’s just define it as the feelings generated by each touchpoint between customers and your brand.
With automation, you can ensure a consistent experience for all customers. This can include everything from a personalized experience while browsing your site through the use of automated dynamic content, to the emails they receive after making an order, to the reminders they get after leaving a product in a cart and much more.
With marketing automation, it’s much easier to create and follow funnels and paths that guide customers through a process. This means you can guarantee the same experience for everyone, using pre-set content templates.
It also means being able to respond to customers instantly when you want to (like when they send a question about a product) or at a certain time in the future when it’s more appropriate (like when you want to activate a customer who hasn’t visited your site for a certain amount of time).
Gather, store and leverage customer data
It’s been said a million times but we can’t stress it enough — customer data is the lifeblood of online sales and you can never have enough of it.
With marketing automation for ecommerce, collecting, managing and using this data is not only easier, but it becomes part of the engine that drives sales and conversions to a level you can never achieve without automation.
With the right marketing automation tools, you can turn every customer interaction into an opportunity to fill in the gaps of each individual customer’s profile. This is because every time a customer views a page or product, every time they add an item to a cart and every time they open an email or click on a link inside it, they’re telling you something about their interests, needs and wants.
Marketing automation lets you immediately pick up and interpret the signals sent by customers, convert them into business intelligence and use them to inform your future interactions.
With each signal sent and received, you can create or adapt customer segments used to send targeted messages, adjust the dynamic content that appears when a customer enters your site, send different messages from prepared email chains and more. Creating a unique, hyper-personalized customer path is easy when you let marketing automation put data to work.
Put your marketing machine on auto-pilot
Like we said earlier, there are a thousand things that will keep you busy when trying to keep your ecommerce operation on the right path. Using a platform that enables you to automate certain processes frees you up to get hands-on with other parts that demand your personal attention.
Marketing automation lets your marketing team get results far out of proportion to their size by deploying tools that attract and retain customers without direct intervention and management. Email conversations, loyalty programs, newsletter signups, on-site pop-ups, measures to combat abandoned carts, SMS communication, transactional messaging and more — all of this can be put on auto pilot after a short set-up and function perfectly without the need for manual guidance.
Just think about the time and resources all of those tools would require without marketing automation tools. When everything runs quietly and reliably in the background without making demands on your time, you’re free to focus on the big picture and devote your time to growing your business.
Easily scale up
Speaking of growing your business, that is the whole idea, right? And while growth is a good thing, it does present problems and challenges along the way that can be addressed by marketing automation tools.
Since automation allows you to operate at a level well out of proportion to your actual size in terms of staff, growth is easier and causes fewer related issues. When sales double, for example, your sales and customer support teams don’t necessarily have to double too. Automation not only impacts your bottom line through increased conversions, but through recruitment and budget-related savings too.
Marketing automation tools can function perfectly at any scale. In fact, their effectiveness can increase as you collect more data that enables smarter segment creation and more precise customer groupings based on their demonstrated preferences and more.
Once you grow beyond a fairly small threshold, digital marketing strategies become impossible to effectively run without marketing automation tools. The simple fact is that not using automation means not only limiting the size of your business, but being permanently unable to break through in a highly competitive ecommerce landscape.