PPC, SEO, and Social Media Fundamentals for Ecommerce Marketing

IBM compiled an Ecommerce Statistics and Technology Trendsetters Report for 2017, reporting data from multiple sources that demonstrate the competitiveness in the industry. Key takeaways and statistics:


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  • Forecasters predict that eCommerce sales will surpass 2 trillion dollars in 2017, and by 2020, that number will climb to 4 trillion dollars.
  • Business Insider reports that 50% of shoppers have made more than one purchase in the past year, translating into 198 million shoppers in the U.S. buying something online.
  • A report from the US Census Bureau shows that eCommerce growth between 2015 and the present has increased ten-fold.


[bctt tweet=”eCommerce growth between 2015 and the present has increased ten-fold” username=”fifthtribe”]


What do all of these numbers mean for eCommerce retailers?

It’s time to master the PPC, SEO, and Social Media Fundamentals for eCommerce marketing.


mastering PPC, SEO, and Social Media Fundamentals for eCommerce


Let’s dive into the data and focus on the right strategy and methods for PPC, SEO, and Social Media.


PPC Fundamentals for eCommerce


Don’t ignore Bing and Yahoo Yes, Google owns the search engine market share, but the popularity of Windows10 and the growing use of tablets and smartphones drive internet users to Bing and Yahoo. If you’re selling items in China, you should check out Baidu.


Google alternatives will give you greater insight into your targets for better reach and conversions. Bing just released two beta options to leverage customer data: In-Marketing Audiences and Custom Audiences. The data will provide marketers with the ability to identify which audience segments convert and create personalized ad copy for those segments.


PPC eCommerce ads on Amazon Millions of eCommerce shoppers are using Amazon, and you can reach them with the Advertise with Amazon service.


PPC on Facebook With 1.28 billion daily active users (March 2017), Facebook has an audience too large to ignore. You can set up a pay-for-conversion account and set the maximum budget. Facebook Audience Insights delivers powerful customer profile data, giving eCommerce brands valuable demographic data to guide future advertising.


A Strong Focus on Mobile Design Data shows that eCommerce buyers are cross-device consumers; they begin on one device but complete the transaction on another. While smartphone conversion rates are lower than for desktops, mobile devices are the primary tool for internet users, and conversion rates on mobile are on the rise.


AdWord Fundamentals for eCommerce

AdWord Fundamentals for eCommerce


Google processes over 3.5 billion searches per day, placing AdWords in a category of its own. The high search volume gives eCommerce sites an incredible opportunity to drive sales through AdWords. With Google taking in more than $30 billion in advertising revenue last year, eCommerce brands will need more than Google AdWords 101 to succeed.


Apply Negative Keywords Adding negative keywords to campaigns will help Google shift your budget to keywords that deliver ROI. To find negative keywords, begin with the AdWords Keyword Planner. Type in your main keywords and evaluate the related keywords. You’ll see modifiers that don’t apply to your business, make a note of them and apply them to your campaign.


Raise Your Quality Score Sounds simple, right? Not quite. There are several factors that go into raising a quality score:

  • Higher-than-average click-through rate
  • High number of ads
  • Optimize daily, weekly if daily is impossible


Language & Location Settings These settings can improve your click-through-rate and help you target an ideal audience. Choosing the right location and language settings will ensure ads are only shown to customers who speak your language and are within your shipping area.


Advanced AdWords Fundamentals


Use Smart Bidding AdWords Smart Bidding will save you time and improve ROI. Before the Smart Bidding release, PPC marketers relied on Excel formulas and macros to identify conversion optimization opportunities and make manual campaign adjustments. Note: If you are running on manual bidding and make the switch to automatic, you won’t be able to have as much control over the data. As with all new methods, start with a few campaigns before making an across-the-board change.


Device Settings Campaign device targeting will help your ads meet customers where they are most likely to click and purchase. Review campaign performance on mobile devices and determine if it’s worth targeting mobile users only.

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SEO Fundamentals of eCommerce

SEO Fundamentals of eCommerce


Successful eCommerce SEO is impossible without the right site speed, check-out speed, and landing page design.


Take extra steps and apply eCommerce conversion hacks to your eCommerce site to ensure you’re not losing prospects once they are on the conversion path.


eCommerce Landing Page Design. A landing page designed specifically for eCommerce is like a mini-website just for a product. It contains the right keywords with maximum readability, it drives the visitor to buy something or fill out a form, and it loads quickly on all devices.


Expand Keywords Ranking well for high-value keywords in eCommerce is difficult because of the leading eCommerce sites.

  • Amazon
  • Ebay
  • Walmart
  • Etsy
  • IKEA
  • Best Buy
  • Home Depot
  • Target


You get the picture. Luckily, you can still use these high-value keywords for SEO with the use of modifiers. Use your keyword tool or Google Autosuggest to identify modifiers that are suggested with your top keywords.

Example: Rain Boots


Modifier suggestions from Google Autosuggest:

  • cheap rain boots
  • cute rain boots


Keyword tools aren’t the only place to snag modifiers. Content analysis tools like BuzzSumo give us trending topics, and keywords and Google Trends give us related topics and queries for main keywords.


Competitor Keywords Is there a competitor who always outranks you? Don’t confuse competitors who outrank you with competitors that you know because of your shared industry.


Use Ahrefs Site Explorer to find competing domains from a search engine perspective. The Content Gap feature under Organic Search will help you identify relevant keywords that you missed in the initial keyword research phase.


Rich Snippets (Schema Markup) While the use of rich snippets isn’t a ranking factor alone; they enable search engines to understand and crawl your website content. From there, rich snippets have the potential to stand out in the search results and increase your click-through-rate. Google’s Products page offers a full instruction guide on the use of rich snippets for products.


Mobile Focus Mobile traffic has surpassed desktop traffic, but mobile conversions still fall behind desktop conversions. When optimizing for mobile, keep in mind that you are optimizing for the customer journey.


There are a few tricks you can use to help shoppers return to your website after finding a product during a mobile search:

  • Offer a coupon pop-up
  • Offer “special club” benefits with an email opt-in
  • Give them an app option
  • Offer interactive content to keep them interested
  • Make sure landing pages look good across all mobile devices


Social Media Fundamentals for eCommerce



[bctt tweet=”AdWords Smart Bidding will save you time and improve ROI” username=”fifthtribe”]


Focus on the Right Channels Social media can drive impulse buyers to your product pages, but capturing these buyers requires a strategy backed by data. Google Analytics can give you the granular snapshots on traffic and conversions to guide the strategy.


Social Media channels


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The image above is a screenshot of the Acquisition dashboard in Google Analytics. Pinterest is the clear winner in directing traffic to this website. Once the high-traffic channels are known, set-up Google Tag Manager to track social media conversion data and focus on the channel with the highest conversion rate.


High Conversion Keywords Social media posts have the ability to show up at the top of the search results page. Identify your top converting keywords and use them in your posts.


Hashtags Using hashtags with high visibility can drive traffic to your posts. RiteTag gives you a snapshot of hashtag value and suggestions.


High Conversion Keywords Social media posts have the ability to show up at the top of the search results page. Identify your top converting keywords and use them in your posts.


Post and Interact Social media boosts trust with eCommerce buyers. Your social media team should be interacting with people who comment and ask questions. Customer support is part of social media marketing; make sure it’s covered. Don’t forget about the latest private messaging features in Facebook, WhatsApp, and Snapchat.


eCommerce marketing is in a constant state of flux, so it’s important that your website has all the fundamentals down across PPC, SEO, and Social Media. If you’re looking for a partner to help you implement them, we’re ready to help you begin!

Khuram Zaman

Khuram Zaman is the CEO of Fifth Tribe, a leading digital agency serving the Washington DC Metropolitan Area based out of the 1776 Startup Co-working Space. In his professional capacity, he has provided digital marketing services to clients as diverse as the Department of Defense, Kaiser Permanente, Oxfam America, Ernst and Young, and The Hult Prize. His writing has been featured in Forbes, Entrepreneur.com, and Business2Community. Khuram is the host of the Campfire: Impact and Innovation live podcast on Youtube. In his free-time, Khuram serves as a mentor to startups through the Peace Tech Accelerator, the Halycon Incubator, and is also a Entrepreneur in Residence at Georgetown University