May Ecommerce Digest

While our April content focused on how software companies can utilize social media for ecommerce purposes, May’s content took the perspective of the B2B software merchant, those sales teams and ecommerce professionals who set their sights on selling software to businesses, hospitals, schools, nonprofits and government agencies.

This Ecommerce Digest continues that B2B focus while also considering the efficacy of the traditional corporate website, the barriers to e-commerce growth, advertising on connected TVs, and the best way to offer user educational prompts within a program or website.

B2B Marketing

The B2B Buyer’s Journey Grows Up | Forrester
Way back when, your B2B sales team traveled the highways and byways of their targeted regions and demonstrated the value of your software to potential customers at their offices or trade shows. Similar to our recent content about the B2B buyer’s journey, this post explains the changing landscape in which B2B buyers shop and the ways in which that changing landscape affects B2B merchants. It also offers three important pieces of advice on how B2B companies can adapt their marketing strategies so that it aligns well with the habits of the modern business buyer.

Content Marketing

“She pointed at the corporate website as a “traditional marketing vehicle” (ouch!) that companies should abandon due to the overwhelming evidence that most visitors scan the page and leave because they are not looking for information about your products.” – Is The Corporate Website Dead?

Is the Corporate Website Dead? | LinkedIn
I found this intriguing article from Michael Brenner, VP Marketing, SAP, when it popped up in my LinkedIn web feed. The obvious goal of any site with ecommerce capabilities is to drive traffic to the checkout process. But, it is dangerous, naive and ineffective, especially for B2B software companies, to think that your only message to visitors should be, “Buy my product!” If you don’t know it yet, let me spell it out for you: The name of the online selling ecommerce game is now called content marketing, and your homepage is little more than the small signboard outside a doctors office.

Digital Advertising

Connected TV Ads Important for Future, but Few Know How to Buy Them | via eMarketer
Most of your advertising dollars are probably going to paid search ads, display networks and maybe even a little bit toward social channels. But more and more shoppers are investing in connected TVs which presents a new opportunity for digital merchants. According to a recent report, nearly every single digital advertiser is wondering how to approach connected TV advertising in the near future. Whether its through an Apple TV, your Roku box or the TV’s native app store, connected TVs are the new frontier for driving online traffic, but figuring out how to partner with publishers remains difficult.

Barriers to Ecommerce Growth

Ecommerce Chart: Barriers to Growth | MarketingSherpa
The ecommerce market is growing – especially when you compare it to the overall economy. But just because shoppers are making more and more purchases online doesn’t mean they are coming to your store. So how do you remove barriers to your growth? One of the main barriers is technology, and this article does a good job describing the complexity that keeping up with technology creates for merchants.

User Experience

How to Educate Users | LukeW
In this short video, master digital product designer Luke Wroblewski offers some excellent suggestions for how product and web designers can prompt users of their program or site with instructional cues in a more efficient manner than they might currently offer. The advice is basically to not offer up all the guidance the first instance a user logs on or leave all that information in a downloadable instruction manual, but to anticipate your users needs and offer prompts the moment they might need them.

Have you created a unique and ingenious way of prompting users with useful information? Tell us about it in the comment section below!