Ecommerce News: Social Gifting, Lifetime Value & Ecommerce Best Practices
by Elana Birnbaum - April 30th, 2012 11:47 am
In Ecommerce news this week, retailers are finding new and innovative ways to market their products and to increase exposure to their business. In an effort to increase online sales, virtual retail businesses are looking into social gifting, utilizing open platforms, and harnessing new technologies to bring their marketing to the top. Online businesses are also looking into ecommerce strategies and best practices to ensure that their website and online shopping portals are up to par with new industry standards.
New Buzzword for Online Retailers: Social Gifting
In an effort to leverage the social media mega trend, ecommerce vendors are now looking at social gifting as a driving force behind increasing sales and exposure. Social gifting allows customers to purchase gift cards for their friends on Facebook, and this gives online retailers a new, more efficient method to promote their business and drive sales. With Wrapp, a start-up company based in Sweden, people can run an app on their mobile devices that allow Facebook friends the opportunity to purchase gift cards for each other from retailers that have joined the community. The online marketing cost is very low, and since customers end up buying more upon accessing the retailer’s store, the concept of social gifting is quickly becoming more and more popular among Ecommerce merchants.
Creating Open Models to Overcome Barriers to Ecommerce Success
With traditional ecommerce website design, consumers have found many problems with the process and are generally unhappy with at least something about the buying experience. A new ecommerce platform and model has emerged, referred to as ‘agile commerce’ or ‘open commerce.’ With this more open, innovative platform, ecommerce consumers are able to purchase products and services directly from the source, instead of going through a static, sometimes boring website to complete the buying process. These ideas strive to eliminate any traditional boundaries that online merchants have tried to overcome to create a more streamlined approach that appeals to consumers.
Reasons that Ecommerce Vendors Should be Measuring Lifetime Value
In terms of metrics, online merchants have a myriad of data sources to evaluate, but one often overlooked metric that vendors may want to take a closer look at is the lifetime value of their products or services. While other metrics are geared towards assessing buyer behavior, measuring lifetime value of a product or service helps to evaluate the best way to shift buyer behavior to impact profitability. Lifetime Value or LVT represents all of a buyer’s lifetime purchases and predicts purchases that he or she is likely to make in the future. Measuring the lifetime purchases of buyers is a great ecommerce strategy that helps to refocus discussions towards positively impacting buyer profitability rather than ad management or sales growth.
New Online Merchant’s Guide Gives Insight into Ecommerce Best Practices
Among the many practices discussed in the information packed guide by PowerRetail, ecommerce strategies unfold in precise detail to allow start- up entrepreneurs and established online merchants to delve deeply into their current platform to see if they are harnessing best practices and utilizing the latest technologies to their advantage. Among the many insights listed in the guide, building a dream website, an essentials checklist, and many other useful tidbits of information are of extreme importance. Entrepreneurs are now able to take a glimpse into the growing ecommerce world with helpful tips like the following. In an effort to maximize potential while managing costs and ad-spending, online vendors should assess each marketing channel to see which are yielding the greatest profits before investing more in those channels.
Magazines Jump into Ecommerce Market
Magazines are now looking at new ways to leverage the power of ecommerce to build their business and attract their loyal readers to events or to offer them the chance to purchase items directly from the magazine’s online application and improve user experience. Time Out New York has been experimenting with new ways to harness the power of ecommerce to explore new revenue streams and to help their digital magazine prosper. In an effort to bridge the editorial divide between retail sales and content creation, magazine editors are looking for new ways to offer products while still maintaining their readers’ trust. Vogue has accomplished this by offering their retail items as a service by partnering with Moda Operandi.
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