As the CPG industry evolves to make way for digital marketing, we are seeing many traditional pieces begin shifting.
CPG has always found the most success through in-store, whether that’s Kroger or Walmarts, in-store has been the best way to get products to your customers.
In 2019, the total spent on digital marketing across the whole world essentially doubled. Every company is breaking down the best ways for them to start shifting their efforts to digital platforms. The same can be said about CPG marketing.
Why Use E-commerce for CPG?
E-commerce should be an automatic thought for any medium or large CPG brand. Having a website with e-commerce functionality can remove several of the barriers your customers may have, and relieve what some call the “customer blackhole”. This term essential refers to the gap between CPG brands and their customers in-store, and e-commerce works to resolve that.
Calculate Conversions & ROI
Calculating conversions and return on investment is one of the biggest selling points for e-commerce, especially for me as a marketing expert.
In my career, I have helped several CPG brands build e-commerce platforms to grow their brand further. This involves setting the website framework up, customizing it for their brand, and making sure it is ready to function for customers.
When you control and own your own e-commerce site, that allows you to take advantage of tools like Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel to get in-depth reporting on how your store is functioning.
Using Enhanced E-Commerce from Google, you can see realtime information on what items users have in their cart, what items they take to checkout, and what has been purchased. This can help you understand where your customers are stopping in your funnel, and work to optimize.
For Dickey’s Barbecue, I helped optimize their customer funnel by reintegrating the shipping options. We made it easier to see visually, as well as set up the WooCommerce shipping to display better rates and make it easier to understand.
If you use a platform you do not own, it can be hard to make simple optimizations like this that can drastically increase the effectiveness of your e-commerce store.
Understand Your Customer Channels
Using Google Analytics, you can get a deep understanding of where your customers are coming from, and what is working the best. For small or new CPG brands, Google Ads is usually the best place to start in digital marketing, and it’s important to understand how this customer channel functions in relation to your brand.
Using E-commerce, you can get a look into how effective your ads are for actually converting users, not just bringing them to your website.
Optimize Your Marketing Efforts
From the previous two points, you can work to optimize your marketing efforts by directing customers to your e-commerce website.
Once they are there, you can watch how they interact with your website and in whole, your brand, so you can work to optimize your marketing efforts. E-commerce stores will give you direct insight into how your packaging, aesthetic, and marketing, work together to convert customers.
What E-Commerce Platform is best for CPG?
In the later parts of 2019, we are seeing many alternatives to typical e-commerce websites. Here are some of the most popular e-commerce platforms for CPG in 2020:
Is Amazon Shopping Good for CPG?
Amazon shopping is the most popular alternative to e-commerce and I have helped brands integrate that platform in what they are currently doing. But many of them will ask, “why not use Amazon instead of E-commerce?”, and I have an answer.
Amazon is a great option for selling your CPG products online because they have reasonable shipping rates and can handle product inventory. This can make fulfilling easier for smaller brands. But if you are capable of supporting a full e-commerce store, that will be much more effective in the long run. Why?
If you stick to Shopify or WooCommerce for E-commerce, you are in control of your SEO. For brands like Dickey’s, the beginning can be a difficult start even if you have the world’s largest barbecue brand. It took us several months to generate any traction organically, but once we did, we saw people from organic search come to the website and purchase products.
This keeps your traffic and organic growth on your own domain, which is very powerful. This is how you will grow your brand in the future.
E-Commerce Checklist For CPG Brands
I have worked with several CPG brands to launch e-commerce websites, and there are several things I see them miss time and time again. As both a web developer and a marketing expert, SEO comes easy to me. Before you launch any part of your e-commerce store, you should go through this checklist of free analytic software to install on your website:
- Facebook Pixel
- Facebook & Instagram Shopping
- Google Tag Manager
- Google Analytics
- Google Search Console
- Google Merchant Center
- Product Schema
Once you look through this list and confirm all of these tags are installed, you are sure to cover all your bases for your CPG website. If you need help understanding or installing any of these services, reach out to us and we can have a 30-minute conversation!