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How to Select a Digital Marketing Agency for Your Ecommerce Store

When setting up an ecommerce store, sometimes the best thing to do is collaborating with a digital marketing agency. They can take your ecommerce store from a grassroots level into an empire with lots of facets. From a bigger perspective, you might not see all of the nuances that could make your store much greater. Remember, the digital marketing agency works with you to help you make your goals come alive. Here are some things you should consider before you select a digital marketing agency.

What Are Their Initiatives?

Even though it’s great to have things from a different perspective, you should always make sure that there are similarities. Do their goals conflict with what you want to do in your business. You should take a look at the site and go through their mission statement and features. What do they offer? How does their take on things help you in your brand.

Also, it’s good because you can see their intentions. Sometimes their perspective may be great but that doesn’t mean it works the best for you. For example, you may have an agency that works strictly through an app. However, your business maybe a bit more personal. You might be the kind of business that sends personal emails and have that personal interaction. On the flip side, the digital marketing company maybe just the kind that truly works from a mobile perspective. You have a lost leader right there because your business focuses on a particular demographic. Not all things work in your favor. Think of it like seeing someone wearing a great shirt that you believe looks great. If you decide to wear it, the fit might not be right because it’s too big or just doesn’t go with your body type. Luckily, you have a choice in the matter and you can find your right fit.

Shop around to see what works best for your goals. Integrity is the key and at the end of the day, your reputation is on the line when it comes to creating a quality business. If the brand doesn’t follow through with your overall mission, it may not be a good idea long term to hire that company. The small things count in the long run because they may not get your vision. You can take their advice but are they willing to work with you on your level to find out a great balance? They could offer great service, but that doesn’t mean it works with the motif of your company. Money is great, but longevity is much richer. Your evolution should be natural, and it’s also what keeps you a step ahead of the rest.

Look at Customer Reviews

One of the things you should take notice before consulting with any firm is by looking at other experiences. You want to see the balance between good and bad reviews. Of course, not all businesses are going to have a squeaky clean record; that’s unrealistic. However, most reviews should be favorable. Let’s say you have a digital marketing agency and you look at different Yelp reviews. If you see someone with a 2.5-star rating, then that should automatically be a red flag. Of course, a lot people are biased and do things out of spite. However, if you see the same kinds of reviews coming back from different people, you want to take a few close looks.

Also, you want to see the reviews on the site. You want to see if they are being absolutely honest with you. If they show that they have negative reviews, it’s a sense of character that goes behind it. Additionally, some people might have a bad experience one time, but they could have a better one the next go around. Sometimes, a bad experience may turn out to be okay. Take an example like the item got delivered extremely late. However, the reviewer may say, “I had a slightly bad experience with shipping. However, they refunded me my shipping cost and sent out a great care package the next day because of the fault delivery. I’ll try them again in the future. Thank you for taking care of me even with the bad shipping experience.” That speaks a lot of volume. As a person that wants to make sure the simplest things are done correctly, you have to give them value.

Do your research to find out how the legitimacy of the agency you want to intend to pursue for your business endeavors. You might want to even go to a forum and ask different experts. What top agencies did they use to help them build a 6-7 figure ecommerce business? What are the pros and cons? Did anything go wrong? How was the problem solved? It’s much more than a business transaction, it’s about character.

Do They Have a Social Media Presence?

This is another factor. A digital marketing agency needs to touch the pulse of the people. It shouldn’t be just a fancy curtain with bells and whistles. They need to get on the nitty grit as well. That’s by interacting with people and finding some common ground. Additionally, it is a digital service, so you should have questions with how they can enhance your presence. One of the keys is having a great social media presence. People are more interactive these days and it’s almost as if they need more. It’s not like back in the day where your reputation precedes you. You’ve built a great brand through word of mouth, but you need that endorsement.

As someone who wants to progress in your business, you may not have the best social reputation. A digital marketing agency can help you regulate your social media platforms. If you have an ecommerce business that focuses more on content, then they will be able to suggest a plan of setting different tweets, Facebook posts, Instagram pictures, etc. It’s all about allocating your time effectively. Also, they will help you monitor what particular platforms work best. Sometimes your business doesn’t care to specific social sites. Why? Your demographic may be different. This is especially the case if you cater to an older audience. An older audience might be more prone to Twitter or Facebook. Why? The dialogue is different, the engagement is a bit more mature, and it doesn’t feel as fast-paced like an Instagram or Periscope. In addition, they may have more family members that are on those sites, so that could work in your favor when you do tend to pitch your products.

Even if your business isn’t really app-based, it’s still important to see how certain apps (desktop or mobile) can help make your business stronger. They will see how you run your business and whether or not a particular social profile fits naturally. Sometimes it’s not about being on a bunch of platforms. It’s finding what makes sense. A social media profile should be just that, an extension that coincides with your main site. A good digital marketing agency can see how these factors will actually make your ecommerce store run more efficiently.

Find Out the Strengths and Weaknesses

A digital marketing agency may be stronger in categories like site design or SEO, but look to see how they help in other departments. Find out their overall strengths and weaknesses. Not every agency is going to be the top gun in every aspect of digital marketing. Some just focus on a few key targets that they can give expert service. This will help you narrow down your choices to see what option suits your needs.

If you know that you have quality product, but your design is severely lacking - make an appointment with a digital agency that really has a great design team. Remember, the look and feel of your site is worth a lot more than you think. There’s a reason why the saying goes: “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Think of the customer. A customer goes off of impulse. They are not going to scroll through a dreary-looking site that screams out “I need some color and flavor.” It’s like having white rice without any beans or some kind of spice to bring out the richness. That doesn’t mean you have to create a high-tech site. But add some doses of flavor and character to it. It’ll make for a more pleasurable visit.

Let’s say your SEO is lacking and you just have a problem gaining traffic. You should find a good digital marketing agency that can not only help you build organic traffic, but create a good motion for local SEO. Whether it’s creating a good Facebook profile, ranking for keywords in your state, county, or city, you need to know what they can do to develop this attribute to your business. It’s like having the ingredients to the greatest party in the world, but absolutely no one knows about it. It defeats the purpose.

Does the Agency Have a Referral Program?

You should always consider if the digital marketing agency has a referral program. Why? Well, this could lead you to getting more sales. Lots of companies tend to go with a reward system because it’s an easier way of building clientele and it gives incentive to their loyal followers. What kind of details go into the program? Do they provide good banners, links, and different messages to send to your referral users? Also, is it a more personal point of view based on your business?

Additionally, what is the profit they leave you? What is the percentage of their cut for each person you refer? These are all things you need to consider if you do want to go that route. However, some agencies can give you advice on creating your own. That may be the better route when you’re business is still pretty small. This way you can get a good blueprint, but you can maintain more profit. It’s all in how you want to use the agency’s consulting. Not every referral program may work with your business. However, you should always have an option should you choose to go that route.

Go Straight to the Horse’s Head

Now this is the key. What looks good on paper is not the end all, be all. Just like you would hire a plumber or someone who fixes the roof, you need to set up a conversation. Ask them right off the bat if they can chat with you to tie any loose ends. If they say they don’t do that, it’s automatically a red flag. Remember, you’re hiring them. It’s like applying for a job. You might have a great resume, but the in-person is a totally different thing. It’s like a judge of character. You can see the eyes, hear the tone of voice, the body language, and everything. Also, the employer may not to delve in on previous employment opportunities you had in the past.

In the conversation, you should ask any questions you need to be cleared up. You can see the kind of business they are and the demeanor. Some may be a bit more by the book, technical, or a laidback. Figure out what kind of business you like to run, and see whether or not the agency fits in with your overall brand. It doesn’t have to be exactly like your business, but it should be around the ballpark. You never want to get into the business with someone who’s completely different from you. However, you do want someone that can look at nuances and show you alternative route in case you get stuck. When you’re more on the like-minded side, that tends to breed more success because your goals become theirs.

What kind of things do you look for in a digital marketing agency? Do you use a program currently that has really jump started your success? Have you been through any mishaps using a particular service? We would love to hear your input below.

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