Beauty & Cosmetic Marketing Guide for a successful E-commerce Store
In 2017 alone, an estimated $29 billion revenue from the beauty industry was recorded. All signs and projections indicate that this bustling industry is not going to stop anytime soon. In 2020, this projected income is estimated to sky-rocket up to $158 billion.
Countless beauty salons and stores are vying to get a slice of that pie. Are you one of them?
With everyone else fighting to get the attention of beauty consumers, how can you make sure you get your name out there?
Worry not, this article will walk you through everything you need from start to finish to run a successful and profitable ecommerce store.
First, let’s take a look at your business.
Know your business
Companies that don’t have a backstory tend to be perceived as a robotic marketing machine. However, those who are authentic and know how to help their customers improve their everyday lives do especially well in the beauty industry.
In a world where one’s image is becoming the focal points of success, there is no denying that branding is the most crucial step to take before anything else.
Who are you? Why are you doing this? What is your story?
Your customers want to know. Being authentic in your approach and making good use of your website, logo, packaging, voice, content, and overall values to send the message out. Create a brand for your customers that is authentic, build a community around you and you’ll the one that sticks. But more in this later. Let’s start small.
Firstly, what will you sell?
In the beauty industry, there are three ways to source your products:
- Manufacture – If you have enough resources and knowledge to do so, you can manufacture your own products and offer your customers something truly unique.
- White Label – These are products usually made by another business that you would then repackage and rebrand to fit your needs.
- Resell – If you have no resources to make your own products yet, try contacting the brand that you want to resell. Some brands usually have resellers’ packages as a part of their marketing strategy. Look for these and start selling products that you source from an already prominent brand.
Run a 24/7 sales machine
With the demand for beauty products and cosmetics on the constant rise, you need to make it a priority in your business to be there for your customers.
The beauty industry is a 24/7 business. Customers will arrive at your website any time of the day or night expecting to be able to buy what they are looking for and if you don’t offer it, they have plenty of opportunity to find someone who does.
Where to Start in a Crowded Market
Before you are able to really start selling effectively, it’s important that you understand what your point of difference is in the marketplace. Take some time now to sit down and get a clear understanding of your business by asking yourself a few questions:
- What is your unique selling point?
- What makes you different?
- Who are you trying to reach?
- How will you reach them?
- Is your product a totally different one?
- Are you trying to introduce a new experience for an already existing one?
- How will your branding help you convey that?
With your answers in mind, draft all the products and services that you are going to sell, from the lowest value to the highest.
Who to sell to: Determine your Specific Market
In such crowded market, targeting everyone of them and hoping to make a mark can prove to be a futile attempt.
Start with a small crowd. A dedicated group of customers to whom you can showcase your passion and your expertise. A group of people who you can nurture and eventually drive sales from.
Determine this specific group of people. Why would they want to listen to you? What value can you add to their daily lives?
How to Grow: Marketing options
Here are some ways that you can start to reach your audience and build your brand.
Build a community
The beauty industry offers your business a unique advantage to not only build a brand and target your audience widely but to create a movement around your products or skill set.
Start and nurture a community – are you exceptional at one specific area of your business? For example, can you craft the perfect eyebrow? Do you also sell the products to help your clients achieve this? Perfect!
Build a Facebook community around this one specific thing. Start a facebook group, create daily content and post live video tutorials to engage with your community. The moment you are ready to sell, you’ll already have a pool of warm leads to launch it to.
In fact, Facebook Live is your marketing dream when it comes to engagement, driving comments at over ten times the rate of non-live videos. An engaged group is a group who buys.
Focus on your specialty and add as much value as you can. Offer tips, techniques and advice to your community and watch it grow. When your group members can see you adding value to their lives out of your passion for the industry, when it comes time to sell them a product or a training course, you’ll have a primed market ready to buy
We mentioned that Facebook Live is an engagement powerhouse – and therefore means growth for your business page.There are two types of Facebook Live that you can try, depending on your current goal.
- Stream a Facebook Live from your business page.
- Stream a Facebook Live to your private group.
Determining where to stream from has different factors to consider. When you stream from your business page, your reach will be broader, but it will also be more accessible to more people.On the other hand, if you are after intimacy and a close-knit audience based on your current goal, then a Facebook Live session to your group is your best bet.Another notable difference is that you don’t have to pay Facebook to boost your post if you are streaming to your group. Facebook will make sure it will appear in the feeds of all of your members.What is essential to understand when you pay Facebook to boost your business page post is that the more people that shares and comments on your video, the more people you will be able to reach the next time you pay Facebook the same amount.This is crucial.
Pro tip: The next time you go Live, focus on getting engagement, rather than the perfect shot. The more people that engage with you, the broader your reach will be. Ask your audience questions such as ‘Where are you watching from?’ ‘Hit the like button if you have xx problem in your business.’ The more engagement the better for your ad efforts going forward.
Here are some more ways to generate comments from your audience.
- Ask them questions that are not answerable by yes or no. e.g. When was the last time you…? What was the biggest disappointment you…? Stories will flood your comment field this way.
- Tag anyone that is connected to you at the moment. e.g. If you are in a restaurant, tag their page. If you used Canva for your materials, tag them. You can also give a shout out to your hero or mentor. This will expand your reach when your video reaches their sphere of influence.
- Ask the viewers to tag their friends who they think will be interested.
Youtube and Google are essentially the same things, and the same rules apply when ranking videos as they do when ranking websites.
Create useful tutorials, share them with your group and send traffic to Youtube. More traffic, better rankings, the more new people see your videos, the more traffic etc. Create a chain of command where people can easily find you with your connected channels.
You don’t always have to be creating new videos for each platform either. Create them on YouTube and market them there. Share them with your Facebook group and encourage your members to engage with it.
It’s not going to be as tedious as it sounds. One useful piece of content can serve you well on all of the channels you want to reach people on.
Shopify is the most common platform for online beauty stores and standing out from the crowd is made a little easier with an inbuilt SEO guide to help you. SEO is one of the cost-effective ways to grow customers and your business as well.
If you are just starting in the business, aiming for organic reach can lessen your expenses instead of paid advertising, which can be costly most of the time.
Shopify has some default SEO powerful tools like editable tags, meta descriptions, and page URLs.
With the editable tags, you can change the title by scrolling down in the search engine and making any adjustments. You can modify your meta description depending on your marketing plan.
Here’s a trick for your page header, include the keywords in your product name. When people type your product on the search list, the search result will show them your product.
This easy to follow in-depth guide will show you how to set up your Shopify SEO for immediate results.
Remember, providing convenience to your target audience will convert them into customers faster.
We’ve all either seen it or done it ourselves, pinning ideas for how we want to look on our board and bringing it into the hairdresser or makeup store.
Don’t underestimate the value of making shareable content to be featured on Pinterest.
One of the essential features that can drive more online traffic to your products is the Pinterest “pin it” button. In fact, it’s an excellent practice to have a “pin it” button on all of your products pages as well as on all of your content pages on both your Shopify store and website.
The important thing to realize is that most people don’t have the Pinterest toolbar installed on their computer. So if you don’t have the button ready to go, you could be losing out on a lot of potential pins.
Instagram is one of the most widely used social media platforms today. Creating a business account on Instagram and linking it to Facebook is an excellent idea for your business.
To have a compelling digital marketing plan is to set your demographics and your target audience first. The keys to a successful Instagram business page are engagement and the appropriate use of hashtags. Make a unique hashtag for your beauty products and use it like your trademark. Mention it in all of your social media posts, on your website and in your Facebook Live videos.
To build a strong Instagram community, make IG-worthy posts – whether it’s a picture, a video or empathy posts.
For pictures, you may feature customers who have had a great experience with your beauty products. You will be able to get their entry through the hashtags you set for a particular item.
Videos can get a lot of attention. Make fun videos of personalities doing fast and easy makeup tutorials using your products.
Empathy posts are shareable quotes that your followers can instantly relate to.
A maximum of 13 posts a day can get you a long way in your marketing efforts. Just make sure that you keep your brand in mind, and your target audience as well.
Product Giveaways and Promotions
Contests and giveaways are a great way to gather followers and expand your reach. As a guide, your contests should not overwhelm your customers. Your prizes should be worthwhile in exchange for the effort that they will take, or they won’t join. These prizes don’t necessarily have to bankrupt you; you just have to give something that your audience wants, like some products from your store, or a custom item, or even a day out with an influencer if you are partnering with one.
Three contests in a year is an ideal number for any business. The goal of every contest you put up should be clear and measurable. Here are some example goals that you may want to target with every contest:
- A percentage of increase in your Facebook likes.
- An XX number of followers on Instagram.
- An XX number of email newsletter subscribers.
There are numerous types of contests that you can choose from. Ecwid gives 25 contests ideas depending on what your goal is.
So there you have it! Some actionable practices that you can add to your digital marketing strategy right now.
Remember these key takeaways:
- Know your audience so you can most effectively target them with products they’ll love
- Build a community around your area of expertise and you’ll build a fanbase who buy from you
- Make the most of Facebook Live – drive engagement and reduce your future ad spend
- Set up your Shopify store for search. SEO is a crucial but often overlooked step in ecommerce
- Share engaging content on social media that makes your audience want to align themselves with your brand immediately, such as empathy posts, makeup tutorials and influencer marketing
- Host giveaways and competitions to drive up page likes and engagement.
Now get to work! You’ve got an audience to build!