These days, scaling ad campaigns isn't the most effective way to boost ecommerce revenue. Increasing ad costs and external factors like the iOS update have shrunk the gap between ad spend and profit generated.
As someone running an ecommerce brand, you must have noticed the declining ROI of ecommerce ads, too. Maybe you're wondering, how can I increase the ROI on ad spend; or, how can I direct the marketing budget in other direction than ads for more impact?
In this article, you'll find the answers. Read on for tips that'll help you push revenue numbers without spending an extra cent on ads.
Goal: Increase AOV and LTV
If you run ecommerce ads, you probably know what ROAS (or return on ad spend) is. But in case you don't, here's the formula:
ROAS = Total ad campaign revenue / Total ad spend
One goal of this article is to teach you to increase ROAS without changing the denominator (i.e., Total ad spend). Meaning, the only possible way is to increase total revenue from whatever ads you are running.
Upselling and cross-selling are the most effective ways to increase average order value (AOV) or revenue per customer. Here's what the terms mean:
You simply have to set up a post-purchase app like CartHook on your Shopify store to upsell and cross-sell, post-purchase. CartHook allows Shopify stores to show complementary products based on pre-set triggers. For instance, you can set triggers like:
Goal: Get more customers
Already have a decent customer base and want to spend $0 on ads? Convert your customers into affiliates.
Affiliate marketing is a word-of-mouth marketing strategy that incentivizes customers or professional influencers to promote products or services to their social circle. It's a performance-based marketing technique wherein an incentive (typically 10-20% of revenue) is shared per successful sale.
Airbnb affiliate program example
Businesses like Airbnb, Uber, Dropbox, Robinhood, etc., use affiliate/referral marketing to acquire new customers. So if you don't have an affiliate or referral program yet, you're missing a chance to grow your brand.
You can install an affiliate app like Social Snowball ‚Å†— a CartHook app partner ‚Å†— to automate affiliate and referral marketing on your Shopify store. It converts all your customers into affiliates and motivates them to share your products with their friends & family with personalized coupon codes and affiliate links.
Goal: Increase conversions
Research by Growcode shows the average ecommerce conversion rate is 2.27%. Meaning, for every 100 visitors that visit an ecommerce website, a mere two people complete a purchase.
However, the top 10% of ecommerce companies see 3-5 times that average. How do they do it? With CRO!
CRO (short for conversion rate optimization) is a process of increasing the percentage of website visitors that take your desired action (purchase, subscribe to the newsletter, follow on Instagram, etc.). In other words, you can increase ROAS significantly with CRO.
You can test a zillion things on your website to reach the ideal conversion rate, but these are top tips for ecommerce CRO:
Goal: Increase conversions and retention rate
In 2019, on average, email marketing returned $42 for every $1 spent. It not only increases the conversion rate/ROAS but also positively affects customer lifetime value (LTV).
To run email campaigns, you need two things:
Getting email marketing software is the easiest part. You can pick from any popular ones - Klaviyo, Sendlane, Shopify Email, Seguno, etc.
Step two is a bit tricky: You have to build an email list and send effective emails.
In ecommerce, there are two types of email lists:
Goal: Build brand awareness
Ecommerce brands spend a lot of advertising budget on spreading and maintaining brand awareness. Organic social efforts can replace part of it.
Organic social is any social media activity you or your customers do to promote your brand without paid promotions.
Here are a few tips to win with organic social:
Goal: Attract potential customers
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a process of pushing your ecommerce brand to the top ranks of search engine result pages (SERPs) for related keywords.
If done right, SEO can replace most of what you do with ads until retargeting. Why? Because people use search engines like Google when they are looking to buy. And with proper SEO, your brand will show up among the top results. For example, if you sell headphones and successfully rank for "best headphones under $100," people will click on your site URL.
After that, you can retarget them. Conversion rates, in this case, will be a LOT higher than targeting a cold or unaware audience.
Check out this guide by Backlinko to get started with ecommerce SEO.
Goal: Increase conversions, AOV, and LTV
Live chat supports customers and provides a better customer experience.
Ads are great. They work. But you can do much more than just fueling the ad campaigns to increase store revenue:
We suggest you do both.