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Welcome to the third blog in our series, where we interview experts in the e-commerce field and pick their brains to uncover the best-kept secrets and tips about how to work within the e-commerce industry. 

At Clerk, we are constantly inspired by e-commerce experts and know there is a vast amount of untapped knowledge that deserves to be shared with a larger audience. 

Achieving sustainable success in the e-commerce industry requires a strategic approach backed by proven expertise. To delve deeper into the intricacies of this landscape and provide actionable insights for webstore owners, we had the pleasure of speaking with Toke Lund, CEO and Founder of Enterspeed

With a wealth of experience in digital growth strategy and consulting, Toke shares his top three tips for e-commerce success.

Let’s get into it, shall we?

Toke’s top 3 e-commerce tips:

Tip 1: Master the Fundamentals to ensure you have a strong foundation.

Toke’s first tip is seemingly simple yet incredibly overlooked: get the basics right first. You need to get the basics right first before you can move on.

Toke states that he sees a lot of companies discussing how they can do things like personalization or CDPs, but they lack a solid foundation. Before you even entertain doing all the other fun and more complex things involved in creating a webstore, you must have the basics. And if they don’t get the basics right, there’s no point in complicating things even further.

What does he mean by this? Well, if more than half of your web traffic is coming via mobile, when was the last time you looked at your mobile experience? If it’s slow and clunky, this should be highly prioritized.

Or if a substantial amount of your traffic comes from emails, what are you doing to cater to this?

How do you represent yourself in different countries and languages if you are active in or looking to expand into several markets? And finally, utilize your data to discover demographics in order to create proper audience segments that will propel your business and marketing efforts.  

"Before you entertain advanced techniques, ensure that your fundamentals are in place," Toke stresses. By getting the basics right, understanding your traffic sources, and tailoring your approach accordingly, you can easily drive sufficient traffic and conversion rates.

Actionable tips:

  1. Mobile Optimization: With a significant portion of traffic originating from mobile devices, prioritizing mobile optimization is paramount. Ensure that your webstore provides a seamless experience across all devices to effectively cater to a diverse audience.
  2. Internationalization: Expand your reach by catering to diverse markets and languages. Implementing internationalization strategies can enhance your global presence and attract a broader customer base.
  3. Customer Segmentation: Tailor your marketing efforts to specific customer segments based on demographics, behavior, and preferences. Understanding your audience enables personalized engagement, driving higher conversion rates and customer satisfaction. 
Tip 1: Make sure you have the building blocks in place.

Tip 2: Prioritizing performance excellence and optimization.

Toke’s second tip is similar to his first but goes even further. Once you have the basics right, you need to ensure you have an optimized and high-performing webstore. When a visitor enters your webstore, it must work effectively and quickly, or these potential customers will simply leave. A high-performing website is really a non-negotiable to stay relevant and profitable in the e-commerce space.

Not only will you have a high bounce rate if your webstore has limited to no performance optimization, but you will also see minimal conversions. This is compounded even further if your search bar is poor and does not display search results. Getting this right is also part of the basics.

Toke highlights the need for speed and efficiency to optimize the user experience, stating: "Performance and search performance are crucial to conversion rates." Not only that, but other crucial facets of your website, including product recommendations, should be as fast and efficient as possible.

Despite its importance, many companies still struggle with slow loading times and inadequate search functionality, highlighting the need for ongoing optimization efforts. Thus, really investing in performance optimization on your webstore can yield substantial returns, leading to enhanced user satisfaction and higher conversions.

Actionable tips:

  1. Website Speed: Optimize loading times to reduce bounce rates and improve user experience. You could implement strategies such as image optimization, caching, and minification to enhance website performance and search engine rankings.
  2. Search Efficiency: Ensure that your webstore's search functionality delivers accurate results promptly. Invest in robust search tools to help users find products efficiently, increasing the likelihood of conversion.
  3. Continuous Optimization: Regularly monitor and analyze website performance metrics to identify areas for improvement. Implement A/B testing and user feedback mechanisms to refine user experience continually and drive conversion optimization. 
Tip 2: Ensure you prioritize excellence and optimization.

Tip 3: Crafting a strategy that sets you apart from the rest. 

"Find your unique selling point and go outside the standard ways of working," Toke advises.

Finally for Toke’s last tip, in an overcrowded marketplace dominated by e-commerce giants like Amazon, Temu, and Shein, standing out requires a deliberate and innovative approach. These companies are heavily pushing their marketing, and frankly, no small business can compete with the sheer size of their budgets.

Not only is there an oversaturated market, but with the rise of AI-powered tools, the potential for these companies is exponentially multiplied.

Therefore, you need to sit down and be very deliberate about one thing: making sure you are not driving business based solely on your Return on Ad Spend (ROAS). Because, let’s be honest here, your ROAS is not going to grow while large companies like Amazon are primarily focusing on their own ad spend.

Toke warns against relying solely on traditional advertising channels like Google Ads, especially as the competition intensifies and returns diminish. For the last ten years in the e-commerce space, stores have been mimicking each other by buying ads on Google to stay relevant and profitable. But with such saturation, you need to find your customer segments outside this advertising marketplace.

Be deliberate about which markets you are active in, why you are there, and how you want to stand out from the crowd. You need to create smaller and segmented groups of your customers and discover other ways to find your customers.

Toke, however, does not believe these can be found in either Social Media or Google Ads. Instead, he advocates for identifying niche customer segments and exploring unconventional avenues for engagement. You need to find your mojo or mode outside the standard ways of working and think outside the box. Find and create a unique and deliberate strategy for fostering dialogues with your customers.

By fostering these meaningful dialogues with customers and carving out a distinctive identity, e-commerce businesses can differentiate themselves in a saturated market.

Actionable tips:

  1. Differentiation: Stand out in a crowded marketplace by identifying and capitalizing on your unique value proposition. To differentiate yourself from competitors, emphasize factors such as product quality, brand authenticity, or exceptional customer service.
  2. Diversified marketing channels: Explore alternative marketing channels beyond traditional paid advertising platforms. Leverage content marketing, influencer partnerships, or affiliate programs to reach niche audiences and drive targeted traffic to your webstore.
  3. Community engagement: Foster meaningful connections with your audience through community-building initiatives. Establishing forums, hosting live events, or engaging with customers on social media platforms can cultivate brand loyalty and advocacy, driving long-term growth.
Tip 3: Craft a strategy that differentiates you from the rest to see continious growth.

Concluding Remarks:

In conclusion, Toke Lund's insights offer invaluable guidance and actionable strategies for e-commerce webshops wanting to thrive in this competitive landscape.

He finishes his interview by underscoring the importance of understanding and executing on your strategy while prioritizing the foundational principles. "Too many companies are fixated on optimizing their tech stack without having the foundational procedures in place.”

As a webstore owner, you can elevate your online presence and drive sustainable growth by mastering these fundamentals, prioritizing performance excellence, and crafting a unique strategy. Implementing these tips can not only enhance the user experience and conversion rates but also improve search engine visibility, which helps drive organic traffic and revenue.

We extend our gratitude to Toke for sharing his expertise with us, and we invite e-commerce enthusiasts to leverage these insights to propel their businesses.

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