Top Four Questions to Ask When Building an E-Commerce Branding Strategy

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Why e-commerce store owners must build a strong, consistent brand to foster customer loyalty and dominate the market

From clothing and accessories to groceries and electronics, shoppers can purchase almost any product online. People tend to gravitate toward recognizable, well-known brands. A brand is more than a logo. A brand is a culmination of emotions, perceptions, and personality traits associated with a store and its products. E-commerce stores with established brands differentiate themselves from competitors and sustain growth.

What is the Brand Story

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Storytelling is irresistible to humans. When e-commerce stores have a memorable and compelling brand story, customers are likelier to engage and buy from that store. The brand story sets the tone for all future messaging. All brand stories should answer the following questions:

  • When was the store created?
  • Where did the store get started?
  • Why was the store created?
  • Who founded the store?
  • What is the store’s purpose?

What is the Product, and Who is Buying it

An e-commerce store’s products and buyers go hand-in-hand; without a purchase, there is no store. The ideal target audience can become more apparent when a brand specifies what they make their products with, where they make them, and how to use their products correctly. By identifying the target audience, brands lay the foundation for all marketing efforts moving forward. Key demographic identifiers include:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Income level
  • Values and ideals
  • Geographic location
  • Interests and hobbies

“For a long-standing customer relationship to come to fruition, the focus needs to shift to creating demand — which is answered by a long-term approach to building a brand,” says Neil Verma, founder of eBrand Builders. 

Once the products and audiences are clearly defined, e-commerce business owners can craft a product story that generates demand with their ideal purchasers. With strategic targeting, stores can turn interested customers into loyal customers ready to offer long-term support.

Who Are the Major Competitors

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Similarly to purchasers, competitors play a significant role in the success of e-commerce stores. Market research can elevate a store’s branding strategy and help distinguish online storefronts in a saturated environment. Brands that know how their products differ gain a competitive advantage. They can then formulate visual and verbal branding strategies to leverage the finest facets of their products. Focus points of e-commerce that can help to identify market differences include:

  • Visual branding
  • Packaging
  • Pricing
  • Verbal communication
  • Product value

How Can E-Commerce Brands Stand Out

With plenty of e-commerce stores in the market, it can take time to create a unique brand. Using a combination of distinctive visual and verbal elements will assist stores in crafting a personal brand identity. E-commerce business owners must make all branding decisions with customers and competitors in mind.

Verbal Communication

A brand is more than what meets the eye. Core values, taglines, brand voice, and copy must resonate with the target audiences but still differ from competitors.

Strong values combine the needs of the target audience and the promises of the store into clear and short statements. Core values formulate a company’s culture and attract like-minded people. E-commerce stores soar to new heights when their values align with their target audience’s values.

With taglines, e-commerce business owners can attach catchy phrases to their brands. For example, the phrase, “Just Do It” is attached to the Nike brand. Taglines must be relevant to the brand, or they won’t stick. 

E-commerce stores must communicate all verbal elements in the same tone; this is called the brand voice. Combined with stellar copywriting, the brand voice can clearly and effectively convey specific personality traits when communicating with consumers.

All copy, including ad copy, blog posts, and social captions, must follow standard grammar rules. Avoid typos and write with clarity to maintain professionalism across the board.

Visual Identity

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E-commerce stores utilize visual branding for every marketing element, from product listings to packaging. Creativity and consistency are essential when it comes to color palettes, logos, and typography. Shoppers are likelier to trust and remember e-commerce stores with uniform branding across their websites, social media accounts, and emails.

A distinct color palette memorably positions brands in the visual sphere when marketing to potential customers. When choosing a color palette, refer to market research to prevent direct competition. Establishing two to three colors that distinctly represent the store creates character. Research shows that colors can cause different consumer reactions. For example, bright red can trigger customers to take action. Ultimately, business owners must base their decisions on what they believe is most suitable for their brands.

Logo designs consist of important symbols, letters, words, or photos that create an e-commerce store’s brand image. Some logos even include the company’s tagline. Regardless, logos must be cohesive and have clarity, no matter how large or small they are displayed.

Typography is a visual expression of the written word. From product descriptions to website design, typography portrays the personality and tone of voice attached to an e-commerce store. Branding shouldn’t distract from available products; choosing between one to three font families is essential to keeping branding clean.

E-commerce stores use graphics and visual content for social media posts, digital ads, and website design. Digital graphics about sales or promotions can help stores communicate important information quickly and clearly. All graphics should be high-resolution and match the store’s chosen color palette and typography whenever possible. Stores should always lean toward content that resonates with their voice and adds value to the customer experience.

Call in a Professional

POLA Marketing’s data-driven methods can relieve e-commerce business owners from the time-consuming work of building an e-commerce brand. Our team can create an individualized approach that increases customers’ experiences and online sales for the furtherance of any e-commerce store.

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