Importance of Branding for E-Commerce Businesses

E-commerce businesses are becoming a reliable way to buy products online. Branding plays a direct role in improving chances of e-commerce business success. An increasing number of global customers are switching to e-commerce sites to purchase everything from groceries to apparel, and electronics to lifestyle products. The e-commerce industry has completely transformed the way in which consumers around the world access products and services. It has suddenly brought a world of options to the fingertips of end users. The future seems bright for the e-commerce industry, with major players branching out into newer product categories frequently (thus setting the standards for smaller brands).

For e-commerce businesses, things are going well enough, but the competition is also fierce. New e-commerce brands are launching every day and persistently trying to get a foothold online. When it comes to branding, e-commerce companies are leaving no stone unturned. In this scenario, it is vital that you build and implement a high quality branding strategy for your e-commerce business.

Branding Strategies For E-Commerce Businesses

By having a result-oriented, effective branding plan for your e-commerce business, you can stand out amongst your competitors. To achieve that, you must determine what makes your e-commerce business a unique player in the industry. Are you offering high quality products at the best available rates? Do you organize regular discounts and offers for your customers? Are you adding new product categories to meet more customer demands? What are the factors that would convince customers to choose your brand against others? E-commerce business owners must strive to highlight the unique selling points of their brand. Only then can an e-commerce brand be boldly promoted to larger audiences.

As an e-commerce brand, you have to be at the forefront when it comes to attracting product vendors as well as consumers to your e-store. Vendors would be interested in using your marketplace, if it has a strong brand that keeps providing value to customers. The number of sellers and customers you bring in to your network depends on the strength of your e-commerce brand, and how well it delivers on its promises. If you are intelligent in your branding, and consistent in your service quality, your e-commerce brand can achieve considerable success.

E-commerce branding, like all branding, is influencing the perception of your brand and its services, in the eyes of the customer. Effective e-commerce branding will make marketing easier, retain more customers, drive up loyalty, and create better potential value for steady, long-term success.

The way you must approach an e-commerce branding strategy is by highlighting some key points. With branding, you must uphold your business’s core mission, the problems you aim to solve for your customers, standards that it adheres to, and proof of the quality of services you provide. What are the factors involved in business branding and their importance?

E-Commerce Branding – Methods and Importance

1. Your Brand Image – A stellar, uniquely identifiable brand image helps customers attach value to your e-commerce brand’s personality. This includes various things such as logos, banners, taglines, marketing captions, social content etc., which should always represent your brand the best. This is quite important if you want to create value for potential customers and convert them into loyal customers. A good brand image goes a long way in retaining customers, by continually generating interest for your e-commerce brand’s offerings.

2. Customer Satisfaction – Customers are everything, when it comes to e-commerce or any other type of business. You can actually enhance customer experiences and drive up satisfaction (and loyalties). This is a big part of establishing your e-commerce brand. Put your best foot forward while marketing, deliver on your promises you make, and provide unmatched service and support to enhance your brand’s potential value. Remember that satisfied existing customers can and will bring in newer customers to your e-commerce business. Maintain your integrity and keep reinventing to bolster your brand’s chances of business success.

3. Find Your Unique Selling Proposition – As an e-commerce business owner you must determine the USP of your brand. This will help you brand and promote it better to larger groups of potential customers. Think about what sets you apart from dozens of competitors vying for true e-commerce glory. Is it your service quality or support? Is it the trust of your customers and your track record? Do you provide innovative offers, discounts and promotions on special occasions? Do you house the widest variety of rare products? You must determine why customers would choose your e-commerce site. What extra value can you offer to your potential customers that convince them to use your platform again and again? Find your USP and use it to strengthen your brand.

4. Utilize All Channels – Technological advances in the past decade demand that your e-commerce business maximizes its presence on all social, web-based and mobile platforms. More and more potential customers buy and sell through handheld devices, and almost all of them are on social websites. All your competitors are doing it, and so should you. It will help you make your brand easily accessible to larger audiences, which in turn will bring more conversions and significantly better revenues. Social and mobile should be the front and center of your branding strategy.

E-commerce sites can benefit from the above mentioned branding strategies. By using the concepts provide here, you can establish your e-commerce brand and take your business to the next level.

M-Commerce – A Blessing for Everyone

Introduction: M-Commerce, or mobile commerce, is a part of E-Commerce. M-Commerce basically means that use of wireless handheld devices for having the trade or we can simply say that M-Commerce is the wireless web technology i.e. the technology enabling users to access digital information from the internet using wireless mobile computing devices or simply wireless handheld devices. With the help of these wireless devices, we can buy and sell different products and services throughout the world whenever and wherever we want. These devices have abridged the distance between the consumers and suppliers. We can assume that M-Commerce is the child of E-Commerce with more technology.

M-Commerce is also known as next generation’s E-Commerce. Now, this statement clearly explains us the importance of M-Commerce and we get assured that M-Commerce is the blessing for everyone in this modern era where each and everyone needs fast and reliable access to internet round the clock (24 by 7).

Following are the some main kinds of Wireless Handheld Devices that are helpful for M-Commerce:

1. Palmtops/Notebooks: The most common example is Sun Ray.

2. Smart Phones (WAP): The most common example is Nokia 8390.

3. GPRS enabled Cell Phones: The most common example is Nokia 6233.

4. Video Game Consoles: The most common example is MS Xbox.

5. Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs): The most common example is Palm i705.

6. Wireless E-Mail Handheld Devices: The most common example is BlackBerry.

7. TV Internet Receivers: The most common example is MSNTV.

*(Beside these, there are number of other wireless handheld devices too, but these are the ones that are commonly used.)

Basically, M-Commerce is the part of E-Commerce but E-Commerce is limited only in those areas where we have internet connectivity. But M-Commerce, as we can see from its name, can be used anywhere. These wireless handheld devices can be connected to the internet through satellite and other means anywhere and at anytime. As it is stated that M-Commerce is mostly connected through the satellite, we can, therefore, also have video and audio conferencing by the help of the devices used for the M-Commerce. In E-Commerce, we too can have video and audio conferences but unlike that of M-Commerce, we do need to have the internet connectivity, which is not possible everywhere. This means that if we are at a place where we do not have access to the internet, so we can not do anything. M-Commerce has become blessing for the people in many ways. As content delivery over wireless devices becomes faster, reliable, more secure, and scalable, there is wide speculation that M-Commerce will surpass wire line E-Commerce as the method of choice for digital commerce transactions. Both Business to Business (B 2 B) and Business to Consumer (B 2 C) E-Commerce transactions can take place using M-Commerce technology.

Some major challenges of M-Commerce: Beside the fact that M-Commerce is a blessing for everyone in this generation, like all others things, there are some limitations and challenges to it as well. Although, these challenges and limitations can easily be changed into blessings, but still these are limitations for many of its users. These challenges are mentioned below:

1. The keyboards and screens are tiny and awkward for a new user to use. In fact, only a part of the screen is visible at a time on these devices.

2. Sometimes, the data transferring speeds on existing wireless networks is slow.

3. Each second waiting for data to download costs the customer money. Therefore, it is too much expensive to use.

4. Most wireless handheld devices have limited memory and power supply i.e. the memory is only extendable to a small extent while these devices are mostly used on battery which may need to be charged quite often.

These limitations and challenges may become a disgrace to the user but still these can not be avoided in any case and the user has to bare these any how.

Some Major Differences between E-Commerce & M-Commerce:

1. M-Commerce keeps us in touch with the world wirelessly by the help of satellites no matter where ever we are but E-Commerce usually does not do that. It normally needs to be connected to internet by the help of wires.

2. M-Commerce is always reliable and easy to access as compared to E-Commerce.

3. Wireless Handheld devices are easy to carry anywhere because of very low weight.

Conclusion: We can finally conclude that M-Commerce is basically a blessing for everyone. No matter, it too has some limitations and challenges, one can not deny from the importance of M-Commerce that has abridged the gaps between everyone especially for the trade and business.

I am the student of Institute of Business Administration(IBA), Karachi, Pakistan. I am currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science. I never wanted to pursue a carrier in CS but we are often in a situation where we have to do something we never want to do. This same happened with me and i have got stuck in this field. Although, I am facing many problems initially, I can now only cross out my fingers and hope for the best till i clear I succeed in this. Well, I am not a regular writer but I just wrote this article to be submitted as an assignment.