April Ecommerce Digest

As we exit April, we once more collect our favorite news articles, blog posts and other ecommerce related facts and opinions to deliver the kind of information you need to know to provide the best ecommerce environment to your patrons. In this month’s Ecommerce Digest we look at business models and DRM issues from Nintendo and Pottermore, investigate the social sales funnel, and review some key tips in PPC advertising and web design.

Be sure to let us know what kind of topics you would like to see addressed in our monthly wrap up of all things ecommerce.

Practical eCommerce | 3 Basic Ways to Improve PPC Advertising – Anyone selling software online wants to guide traffic to their shopping carts, and PPC advertising is an important method for accomplishing this goal. This post teaches advertisers how to create better ROI on PPC advertising by using Google’s new contextual targeting tool, managing customer expectations and developing a willingness to adjust in the face of external changes.

Nintendo E-storeArs Technica | Nintendo plays catch-up, will offer downloadable versions of 3DS, Wii U retail games – Nintendo finally decided to enter the digital download arena, far behind Microsoft’s Xbox or Sony’s Playstation stores. And one point of interest for software vendors in general is the DRM restriction Nintendo imposes on these purchases by limiting play to the first device on which the game is downloaded.

What do you think of Nintendo’s DRM decision? Does it encourage customers to buy more games, or lead to customer frustration?

Social Media Examiner | 5 Tips for Moving Social Media Leads Into the Sales Funnel – Social commerce continues to be a concern of anyone selling online, but the question this post seeks to answer is, “Can we monetize our social media following?” In doing so, we learn the need to test our understanding of our sales funnel, encourage soft conversions, and nurture leads differently than traditional channels.

How do you nurture social media leads? We’d like to hear your thoughts.

Forbes | Top 7 Web Design Mistakes Small Businesses Make – A back-to-basics piece for a small business going online. The main point here is just because you’ve built a valuable product, doesn’t mean that your target audience will automatically see that value. Or know how to navigate the sales funnel. So what you want to do is target a specific audience, simplify the conversion process, and, if you haven’t honed your designing skills, find the people who have.

Harry Potter E-storeWired.com | ‘Pottermore’ Breaks All Retailers and Rules (Except Apple’s and Region Restrictions) – An interesting take on the affiliate / reseller relationship seen through the lens of Pottermore, J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter e-store. Instead of allowing Amazon to pay “wholesale” prices on Harry Potter e-books and charging whatever they want to the consumer, shoppers are forcibly redirected to Rowling’s hosted carts to purchase from there. One outcome of this business model is that US readers will still be unable to buy the UK versions of the book.

Is this a case of an Apple-esque attempt at maintaining digital rights? Let us know what you think in the comment section below.