Taking place over two days, this year’s eCommerce Expo is going to be bigger than ever. There’s going to be more talks and more insight than one person can handle. Unfortunately, one person can’t be in two places at once, and with over 100 sessions in 12 theatres, it’s going to be impossible to catch everything.
So, what key topics should you focus on, that is going to make a real difference to your business?
We’ve put together a short round-up of what we think the hottest topics will be this year. Covering every critical challenge and opportunity that lies ahead, we hope this helps you make the most of your time at the Expo. It may even you a little extra time to stop by our stand and say hello!
1. Optimizing email is essential
Any article that you read arguing that email is dead is wrong. Plain and simple.
In fact, email marketing is only getting stronger, now generating an ROI of $50 for every $1 spent. Email is still the majority of customers’ preferred method of communication with a brand. For an ecommerce brand, email is a vital part of your ecosystem. It covers marketing, transactions, and customer service.
But, with the average customer using so many channels and unique devices, keeping up with demand can seem impossible. Overcrowded inboxes are common and cutting through the noise feels futile. That’s why optimizing your email performance is essential.
Whether you’re introducing channels to compliment email or creating consistent messaging: optimization is key. With a whole theatre dedicated to automation, email and multichannel, it’s a must-not-be-missed topic.
Gavin Laugenie 25 September 15.40 – 16.05 Marketing Automation, Email & Multichannel Theatre
Actionable insight to enhance your email marketing 25 September 12.35 – 13.05 Marketing Automation, Email & Multichannel Theatre
2. Let data influence your decisions
We’ve already highlighted the massive returns email achieves. But how does that equate with the idea that GDPR has made email marketing harder?
Research shows that GDPR has made consumers more aware of how their data is being used. Rather than making them reluctant to hand over personal information, it’s proving the opposite. Customers are happier to hand over their data in return for a unique and personalized shopping experience. So, don’t let GDPR put you off collecting it at every opportunity you get.
Data is your secret power. The most successful marketing strategies rely on data to influence decisions, and that’s exactly what you should be doing. Rather than feeling fear and dread when it comes to data, this is your opportunity to let it empower you. Your opportunities to connect with customers will flourish when you learn how to make your data work harder for you.
Building consumer understanding through data-driven insights 26 September 13.50 – 14.15 MadTech & Data Driven Insights Theatre
Don’t let GDPR kill your marketing strategy 26 September 10.50 – 11.15 MadTech & Data Driven Insights Theatre
3. Realizing the power of reviews
The ever-increasing ecommerce landscape has made it easier for competitors to pop-up at the drop of a hat. As a result, differentiating your brand is now more difficult.
With 94% of shoppers checking reviews before they buy, it’s time we all realized the power of reviews. Consumers trust the feedback of their peers over the promises of a brand. By incorporating reviews into your marketing, show your brands’ openness and integrity. Giving shoppers the power to make informed decisions drives conversion rates and helps you gain valuable insight into your customers.
It’s time to tap into this and make reviews an integral part of your marketing.
5 simple steps to building a successful review strategy – by Ted Baker 25 September 12.40 – 13.05 Customer & Personalization Theatre
Turning insight into action – how to get more from your customer feedback 25 September 11.25 – 11.50 Content & Social Strategies Theatre
1:1 experiences are essential for the modern consumer. It’s what they demand in exchange for shopping with you, and it’s what keeps them coming back to you.
From basic first name personalization and behavior targeting to advanced external dynamic content and liquid script – a little can go a long way. Key to delivering these unique experiences is knowing how to use the data at your fingertips.
Ecommerce brands have been leading the way on this front for quite some time but, it’s important not to rest on your laurels. You must keep learning, trying, and testing to discover what works with your audience and what drive results.
Innovating through content personalization: data-centric strategies to transform customer experience 25 September 11.25 – 11.50 Customer & Personalization Theatre
How to improve online customer experience…even on a small budget 26 September 15.05 – 15.35 Customer & Personalization Theatre
5. Cracking the content code
Let’s face it, few of us are actually trained copywriters, yet copywriting is what we do. Whether it’s email, web, blogging, or social, you’re expected to produce it all.
But you don’t have to be a wordsmith to be a content creating genius. From videos to podcasts, graphics, and physical collateral, you’re trying to achieve two key things with every bit of content you produce:
- To grab the attention of your customer
- To create a connection with your audience that keeps them coming back
Storytelling has been at the core of content marketing since its advent. With people spending more of time on channels like Instagram and Snapchat, telling an engaging brand story is essential.
Five-second rule: grabbing your customer’s attention quickly 25 September 14.20 – 14.45 MadTech & Data Driven Insights Theatre
It starts with a song: connecting with Kobalt’s community through content 26 September 15.05 – 15.35 Content & Social Strategies Theatre
6. Nailing the experience
Optimizing customers’ experiences is essential for ecommerce brands. The better their experience, the better they convert.
The smoother the journey, from browsing to payment, the more likely customers are to return. In fact, they’re 86% more likely to repeat a purchase. You know the importance of personalization to the customers’ experience, but to keep them loyal, you need to go way beyond that. Consistency is key.
Optimization can come in many forms. To most tech-savvy shoppers, mobile optimization and customer service is vital. 24/7 access to customer services through online chat or social media is essential. It’s leading to a significant change to both marketing and customer service roles. The two roles are beginning to overlap and merge.
Ecommerce has been leading the way, embracing customer experience roles as intermediaries between marketing and customer service. But, to keep customers coming back, you need to get ahead of the game, and the best way to do so is to check out eCommerce Expo’s UX and CRO Theatre.
Customer journey hijacking: the hidden problem that’s causing your millions! 25 September 11.50 – 12.15 UX and CRO Theatre
The evolution of ecommerce: how the psychological foundation of consumer behavior evolved and redefined business requirements 26 September 11.10 – 11.35 UX and CRO Theatre
7. Scaling your brand
Ecommerce is open for business. Anyone with an idea and a business model has the power to create the next big thing. But, with giants such as Amazon already dominating the field, the idea of growing your brand can feel daunting.
But this doesn’t have to be the case.
The digital landscape has helped even things out. New tech and access to social media has made it easier for anyone to scale quickly. All you need is the proper inspiration – and you’ll get plenty of that at the eCommerce Expo.
Gorillas & unicorns: unlocking brand growth through technology collaboration 25 September 12.00 – 12.25 MAdTech Innovations Theatre
How to achieve fast, sustainable growth in ecommerce 26 September 13.15 – 14.00 Keynote Theatre
8. Expanding your market
Maybe scaling isn’t your only goal? Maybe you’re looking to expand beyond your geographical location.
The best thing about living in the digital age is that our ambition is limitless. Once upon a time, trading in a new country meant finding premises abroad and setting up shop there. That cost a great deal of time, money and manpower. Technology has helped us break down these boundaries. We know it’s possible, which leaves us with the question of where to start, and how do we ensure our ventures are a success?
Localize to thrive: providing a seamless localized offer 25 September 15.05 – 15.35 Cross Border Theatre
Cross border ecommerce success: the key steps for effective international expansion 26 September 11.30 – 12.00 Cross Border Theatre
9. Prepare for the future
When it comes to the future, there are a lot of scary phrases and hypotheses bouncing around. Buzzwords like AI, Bitcoin, and blockchain are everywhere lately, but what do they mean and how will they change the way we work?
When will the robots take over?
We’re already starting to see AI trickle into our day-to-day lives at work. It’s powering features such as chatbots and product recommendations. These are already making a positive difference to customer experience. Blockchain is improving brand transparency and cutting down on marketing ‘middlemen’.
Advances in technology aren’t slowing down, so preparing for them is key.
AI, chatbots & their use for eretail and marketing 25 September 15.05 – 15.30 MadTech Innovations Theatre
Blockchain in delivery – future or fad? 25 September 15.40 – 16.10 Delivery & Fulfilment Theatre
10. Get ready to go headless
As consumers get used to shopping through apps, smart voice assistants, and in-store interfaces, ecommerce platforms must work harder to keep up.
Whereas most traditional commerce platforms are only designed to deliver content in the form of websites, headless platforms use APIs to deliver content to any screen or device. This is more flexible, adaptable, and offers endless customization and personalization options.
At the moment, Amazon is once again leading the way when it comes to going headless. Traditional commerce solutions can’t achieve the Amazon Prime-like experience 60% of consumers. It’s imperative you start planning to go headless to keep providing customers with the experiences they desire.
Headless ecommerce – the platform revolution 25 September 12.40 – 13.05 Omnichannel Theatre
How to deliver results by going headless 25 September 15.05 – 15.30 Omnichannel Theatre
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