Selling in the Pandemic Era, Part One: How to Develop an Ecommerce Marketing Strategy

The pandemic period is a time that will go down in history as a tumultuous time of change we all needed to adapt to. The great scientist, Albert Einstein, reminds us that, “The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.” 

The changes in the shopping habits of most Kenyans during the Covid-19 era is a true testament to this. It is therefore important to structure your business strategies such that you can address the pain points most Kenyans face when shopping online. 

Photo by Kaleidico on Unsplash

Leveraging the power of ecommerce, whether it is owning a site or selling on available marketplaces is a real boss move for the 2021 Kenyan entrepreneur. But selling online is not an easy feat without a proper strategy that guides your marketing efforts and measures them for improvement over time. 

This post is the first among a series of blogs we will post here on Kendesk to help you conquer the online marketplace. The journey of a thousand miles, according to Lao Tzu, begins with a single step. Here is your first step towards creating an efficient ecommerce marketing strategy. The following tips will work well for any Kenyan small business that is just starting off or has been online for a while. 

Make Your Customers Feel Special 

Photo by frank mckenna on Unsplash

“If you do build a great experience, customers tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful.”-Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon

The difference between one online store that performs well and another that disappoints is the experience that visitors get whenever they visit your platform. Whether you own a site or are operating on a common marketplace like Jumia, Kilimall, or Jiji, your customers want a seamless experience. 

According to a Mastercard Report shared by CIO East Africa, 79% of Kenyan consumers admit to shopping online more frequently since the pandemic started. A further 71% of these online shoppers will spend more on a virtual experience that enhances their online shopping thrill or makes it simpler. 

Just as with regular shopping, online customers want an experience they can brag about and even suggest to their friends and acquaintances. If you are looking to improve your online store’s performance and appeal to customers, these are the key things to do to enhance the visitors’ experience. 

  • Focus on mobile first web design. 
  • Create landing pages for each offer you have. 
  • Write interesting, short and compact product listings. 
  • Add an ‘Add to Cart’ button on each page. 
  • Make registration seamless 

Decide How You Measure Your Success

For any ecommerce marketing strategy to work, it is important to establish your key performance indicators (KPIs). 

Photo by Isaac Smith on Unsplash

These are metrics that you will track and analyse to determine how your online store is performing and which areas need improvement of any kind. According to Orbelo, an ecommerce consultancy firm, the following are the most crucial KPIs for an ecommerce store. 

  1. Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate – How many of your potential buyers leave your site when they only need to pay and complete the transaction? 
  2. Conversion Rate – How many people are you driving to your site and have them buy what you are selling? 
  3. Cost of Customer Acquisition – Depending on your overall budget, how much does it cost to drive each customer to your site? 
  4. Customer Lifetime Value – Every customer that you drive to your online store, how much do they spend overally? Here, gauge this value also according to how many referrals an average customer drives your way. 
  5. Average Order Value – Your items vary in prices, but what is the average amount each customer spends per successful transaction? 
  6. Gross Profit Margin – Before you take out your expenses, how much is your store making? 

Depending on what you sell online, it is possible to prioritize certain KPIs over others. One constant that you must adhere to as an online store owner or marketing head, is to ALWAYS monitor several metrics. 

Choose Your Playing Field Well 

It is possible for an ecommerce marketing strategy to fail when you focus your marketing efforts on the wrong platform. 

GlobalStats through its statcounter tool reports that Facebook is the most popular social media platform in Kenya as of May 2021, with a 46.88% market share. Kenyans on Twitter-KOT (you’ve heard about them) come in second at 23.65% while Instagram users wrap up the podium finish with 11.8% of the market share. 

Snapshot of statcounter on GlobalStats

Social media is one of the best places to focus your ecommerce marketing efforts. By choosing the platform with your target audience, you can significantly improve the traffic to your online store. Moreover, most of these social media sites now feature ecommerce tools that allow you to create a store on them with just your user account as the requirement. Going with this option allows you to create a double-edged marketing strategy that will enable you to tap into a pool of your potential customers. 

Let us Hold Your Hand 

At Kendesk, we believe in building digital capabilities for businesses in Kenya. We are a fully-fledged digital marketing agency that will help your online business grow and become a formidable brand that Kenyans relate with. We offer several customized services that will ensure your business gets to the heart of what your customers want. Contact us today to book a consultation and let us drive your online store to break barriers in this pandemic era.



About the Author

Sharon Adisa
Sharon is a writer and editor who strives to continually further both the depth and breadth of her skills as a writer so as to contribute superior work and deliver client and customer satisfaction.

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