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    Categories: Ecommerce Industry News, Updates and Trends
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According to many experts, 2018 offers great potential for ecommerce stores. This is the year when a number of technologies including AR/VR, chatbots, store personalization and AI powered data analytics might be mature enough to go mainstream.

While new stores might find it difficult to compete with established players, they can grab an edge by becoming early-adopter of the technologies that are about to disrupt the market.

To understand the direction ecommerce industry might take in 2018, I decided to survey the community for the New Year Resolutions. I have found that these statements often reflect the direction that the person typically plans to follow in the coming year. Here is a compilation of the responses:

Enhance Content Marketing Plans

Jimmy Rodriguez

COO & Co-founder of 3dcart

For 2018, one of my resolutions is to increase the number of small businesses we can reach and help them succeed online. Our content marketing campaigns will include articles, presentations, videos, guides and tutorials; created specifically towards small business owners looking to learn more about how to increase traffic and sales for their ecommerce websites. For anyone thinking to launch an online business or already selling online, their New Year’s resolution can be developed around this and include learning and implementing a new marketing strategy, it could be email marketing, paid advertisement or SEO.

Carl Papa

Founder of Pin High Pro

In 2018, we’re making the resolution to improve our onsite copy to better match the feedback we hear from our customers. We want to focus on what their pain points are with their golf swing and speak directly to those issues about how our golf swing aid is a great solution for them.
We want to focus more on understanding our customer’s journey. Too often we just start & end the conversation with our customers when they’re on our website. In the new year, we’ll be calling and talking to our customers to understand how they found us, why they bought from us, and how they used our golf swing aid.

Molly Waterhouse

Sales Director at Hollywood Mirrors

My New Year’s resolution is to send outreach emails to influencers and websites everyday and to build valuable relationships with the aim of getting PR and backlinks for SEO. To build domain authority and a brand so that we get massive exposure in Google. It takes relentless and persistent effort to get to the top of google most people give in.

Sas Terani

Brand Manager for Terani Couture

By establishing a year in review (review, refresh, reload), we’re able to take stock of what strategies and initiatives worked and what didn’t. After our 2017 year-in-review, we’ve established that in 2018, we’ll prioritize content strategy to build long-term relationships and positioning Terani Couture as an industry expert. Digital marketing and content strategy is an effective tool that can be leveraged by brands across all industries to engage with their audience. Using our blog and digital marketing strategy in 2018 to showcase valuable content and educational information that positions us as the expert in our field/industry; boosting our credibility, driving traffic, and encouraging our target market to share our content. The primary pillar of our own content strategy is to use the platform to forecast fashion trends, give valuable how-to tips, and our must-haves for each season. By creating high-value content that evokes a response or sense of urgency, the target audience is engaged and returns time and time again for additional valuable and educational information.

Phil Gregory

Founder of Peak District SEO

I have worked in Web marketing for almost 19 years and the same problems persist today, that I saw back in the early days.
Business owners don’t have the time to merchandise their online stores properly. Very rarely is there a style guide that shows other employees the best and accepted ways to merchandise. Furthermore, rarely do the merchandisers document what they do, so that they can pass the baton to the new team members for an easy start. A part of my plan for 2018 is to build a better eCommerce merchandising guide and to create training days for local businesses to ensure that they get the very best out of their ecommerce sites.

Greg Bullock

Marketing Manager TheraSpecs

I want to better segment our online visitors, who come to the TheraSpecs website with different goals and motivations, in an effort to serve them more customized content from our digital library.

Stefanie Parks

Co-Founder of DermWarehouse

My ecommerce New Year’s resolution is for 2018, to drive more than 20% of sales via organic searches in 2018. We launched our ecommerce company in 2017 and have driven the majority of our sales from paid advertisements (Google Shopping, Google PPC, Facebook Ads). During the year 2017, we’ve worked on increasing our domain authority, which is a key SEO metric predicted based on the amount of backlinks pointing to your site. Even though we’ve made great strides in generating exposure and backlinks in 2017, we have not yet fully reaped the benefits. There are still competitors outranking us, since they are more established.
In 2018, we hope to double our organic sales and go from 10% of sales via ecommerceto 20%.

Tim Backes

Founder of Red Hand Digital Marketing

Our marketing New Year’s Resolution is to make A/B testing a more important aspect of our marketing strategy. Instead of incrementally split testing certain parts of a site and its funnels, we plan to have some type of A/B tests running each and every day. Data is just too valuable.

Adam Watson

Ecommerce store owner of Hollywood Mirrors

My New Year’s resolution is to attempt to build relationships and high quality backlinks every day. If I attempt this consistently I will eventually have such a great backlink profile my competition will struggle to compete with me in the search engines due to my relentless persistence. Nothing worth having is easy, so that is my goal if I can get 200 good links in 2018 it will definitely change the shape of my business.

Boni Satani

Inbound Marketer at  Zestard Technologies

Become Hero with Video. Video content is one of the fastest growing content. It saves time and makes positive impact on your audience. Additionally, there are numerous studies that prove that video content improves sales and conversion. Hence video is my top priority next year.

Charles Dugan

President & Owner of American Image Display

My resolution for next year is to reduce duplicate content on our blog. Currently, we have multiple articles published that cover the same topic. From an SEO perspective, we are essentially cannibalizing our efforts. The goal for 2018 is to consolidate the redundant posts, which should improve the user experience as well as our rankings in search results.

Bob Ellis

Owner of Bavarian Clockworks

My New Year’s resolution is to optimize some of the articles on our blog in order to target the featured snippets. I hope this will drive more traffic to the website, improve our conversions, and help establish our company as one of the leaders in our industry.

Focus on Website Optimization & Personalization

Adam Gore

Director of Find Me A Gift

To document all our tasks and processes that need to be carried out over and over again. And, to ask Find Me A Gift team members what benefits they value most and introduce them. Because we are a gift retailer we do 50% of our business in Nov and Dec so we are going to diversify to increase revenue and profit from Jan to Oct. Further, we plan to invest even more in our IT systems and ecommerce software to offer customers product suggestions based on their search criteria, on site behaviour and budget.Our focus is on our customers and we want to work even harder to treat them like individuals with unique requirements and do everything in our power to fulfil their needs.

Robert Ellis

CEO of Massage Tables Now

Our objective for 2018 is to improve conversions. We have seen a significant increase in traffic to our online store, but our customer acquisition has remained relatively low. We hope to improve this by updating the design of our website so that it has an aesthetic feels that fits better with our brand and industry.

Ryan Geddes

Ecommerce expert at House&Canvas

The year 2018 is about minimising waste. We need to forget trying to convert abandoned shopping carts for a minute and make sure they aren’t abandoned in the first place. Simple checkouts and payment methods are essential for mobile eCommerce strategy and for a successful overall digital strategy in the years to come.

Nate Masterson

Marketing Manager at Maple Holistics

In 2018, our goal is to drive conversions up by 25 percent by enhancing the site and creating engaging product pages. When met with a more aesthetically appealing product page, consumers are more likely to buy – it’s as simple as that.

Jan Bednar

CEO at ShipMonk

We want to improve our pick-and-pack error-ratio to five sigma or better. Further, we want to grow an average of 200% year-over-year by decreasing shopping cart dropout rates.

BenLord

Founder & Creative Director at Softlimit

My recommendation for store owners looking to launch their ecommerce business is: Get your assets together first. Great product/lifestyle photography, product descriptions and site content are the backbone to any successful ecommerce store.

Cody Clifton

Ecommerce Director for Wholesale Lanyards

Our New Year’s Resolution is to improve the user experience of our website as much as possible. We will be working diligently each and every day to A/B test our site and to determine what our customers like the best. As an ecommerce store, our website means everything.

Nick Le

Founder of Gridfiti Blog

My New Year’s resolution is to track everything I do so that I can measure my success or failure. The only way to learn from your mistakes is to actually know what you are doing wrong. I’m running an ecommerce store and an affiliate marketing website and anytime we have a paid ad campaign or a paid influencer campaign, we have to take note of everything. Analyzing past campaigns to improve on future campaigns have made a significant difference and if you don’t make the same mistake twice, you are on the right path to success.
We deal with quite a few ecommerce brands looking for us to promote their products. A common mistake I see is that they don’t have anything to measure the success of the campaign. My tip to them is to use campaigns on Google Analytics and promo codes to measure success. This will help you budget for future campaigns and optimize the best medium to market your business.

Richard Howe

Director at Colour Rich

According to Shopify CEO Tobias Lütke, around 50% of eCommerce sites generate sales. This may appear to be a low percentage, but considering businesses generally have a 10% success rate, your new eCommerce store has a great chance of being profitable in 2018. Getting started with a store and learning as you go is one of the best things you can do. By setting up with a platform such as Shopify, Business Catalyst or BigCommerce, your site will be robust and secure from the outset. Your products and website do not have to be perfect initially, so just concentrate on generating your first sales from a few core items. When the store starts to bring in a regular profit, this can be reinvested into the site development and search optimisation to grow and expand your site.

Gail McKill

Founder of OceanJ

Having someone with an ecommerce background involved in the design and layout helps you (as the business owner) to fully understand the mechanics of algorithms, search engine optimization and the day-to-day running of an online shop.

Andrei Vasilescu

CEO at DontPayFull

In 2018, ecommerce trade will face the toughest competition and Artificial Intelligence will be the most powerful weapon to push any ecommerce business one step ahead in this competitive struggle.

Robert Mening

Ecommerce Expert at WebsiteSetup

I urge store owners to do their research when it comes to eCommerce platforms. Find out which one will make the most sense for you and allow your business to grow into. Website redesigns, platform changes, and the like can be tedious work. That’s why it pays to do your research and make the right choice from the beginning. That way, you can focus on growing your business.Another important tip is making sure your ecommerce platform is mobile friendly. Google is in the works of updating their algorithm to be a mobile-first algorithm. This means they prioirtize content on mobile sites over desktop sites. If you don’t have a solid, dependable, and user-friendly mobile website, this could hurt your ecommerce business’s performance in the search results.And last, scrutinize shopping cart and payment systems offered with the ecommerce platforms you’re considering. Today’s shoppers want ease of checkout and multiple ways to pay.

Align all Your Digital Advertising Strategies toward Growth

Stefanie Rosenfield

Partner at DermWarehouse

Our New Year’s resolution for 2018 is to further increase our return on advertising spend (ROAS) with our ecommerce store.
This past year, we finished with a 2.5:1 return on ad spend. We’re confident that as we continue to optimize our campaigns, we can achieve a 4:1 return on ad spend in 2018.Improving our ROAS will allow us to further increase our profitability, invest more in employees and spend more money on advertisements to continue to grow the business.

Robby Sorensen

CEO at Finger Puppets Inc.

This year we saw tremendous success and growth in sales by adding retargeting, and remarketing campaigns. When you are paying for traffic, you want to maximize the amount of chances you can convert on that traffic, as well as try to retain shoppers’ contact info so that you can try to reach that traffic again. This year we saw more than 20% increase in sales, directly attributable to these efforts. The lesson here is that sometimes traffic won’t convert in the first attempt, but a significant portion of that traffic can convert later. So, to ensure you get the biggest returns for your bucks, and get better ROIs for your PPC campaigns, don’t forget these important steps.

Amanda Austin

Founder of Little Shop of Miniatures

My New Year’s resolution for my ecommerce business is to sharpen my Google AdWords skills. The AdWords dashboard has become incredibly complex over the years, and it’s easy to waste money by not using it in the best way to drive good prospects to your website. Though I’ve had success with Google Shopping and regular Google AdWords, I don’t think I’m using the platform in the most optimized way. So in 2018, I vow to beef up my knowledge on all things Google AdWords by reading articles and blog posts from trusted sites and getting certified in Google AdWords once and for all! I believe this will help me drive more qualified traffic to my site and help me spend less than what I currently do.

Manage Customers in the Best Way

Brian Bauer

President Bauer Entertainment Marketing

Our resolution is to help our ecommerce clients develop more authentic relationships with their customers. Promoting eCommerce stores in 2018 demands smarter marketing, and that means fully understanding and engaging buyers.

Devin Stagg

Customer Experience Manager at Bear Butt

Our New Year’s resolution for 2018 is to make a huge splash in the outdoor industry and change the way it functions. We’re doing it is by creating truly personal connections with each customer, we actually know and love our customers. Also, email is dead, texting is everything.

Darren Schreher

Digital Manager of INTO THE AM

Our New Year’s resolution is to stay on the cutting edge of festival fashion in order to continually inspire our customers to reach new heights. Our mission is to inspire individual creativity and empower self expression. We aim to push new boundaries and create new fashion trends throughout each season of the year.

Natasha Kvitka

Digital Marketing Strategist at GiftBasketOverseas,/p>

My New Year’s intention is to embrace the marketing scope and include many promising channels of reaching potential and existing customers during their online journeys.

Manage Employees Efficiently

Christian Sculthorp

Founder & CEO of VaporizersDirect

My New Year’s resolution is to start delegating tasks and trusting others with the work. Up until this point with the business I’ve done almost everything from web development, to stocking inventory and marketing. It’s about time I start outsourcing some of that work and grow the business.

Tomer Nuni

Tomer Nuni, Owner at SellFe

I can definitely say that now is the time to get onboard this booming industry. We are seeing more and more new sellers each day that choose to open their own dropshipping businesses using online tools that exist today.
Unfortunately, most of them drop-out of the industry due to lack of tech skills, credit problems for stock payments, problematic dropship suppliers, etc. Even though various solutions do exist for all of these challenges, not many can easily utilize them, find them, use them, or access them at ease. As an entrepreneur that has been creating tools and solutions to various online marketing and advertising needs for giants such as Microsoft MSN, X-Factor, Groupon, Google Chrome etc. I can assure you that this is also going to change very soon and a solution is on the way as we speak. The eCommerce industry is booming, and it’s definitely here to stay – and now is the time to get on board.

Dave Hermansen

CEO of Store Coach

My brothers and I along with our office staff currently operate more than 30 eCommerce websites in addition to running our Ecommerce training course and have owned more than 100 web stores over the past decade. My resolution for the upcoming year is to spend more time focusing on the projects and tasks where I am really needed and less time on things that can be delegated to others.

Logistical Efficiency is the Key to Success

Mark Aselstine

Founder of Uncorked Ventures

I have a few. I want to ship stuff faster i.e. within 24 hours. Amazon is definitely changing how people view shipping time frames and I need to adjust to keep up. After about 48 hours people start to get nervous about their shipments if they aren’t at their house yet.

Keep Yourself Motivated

Mike Lindamood

Founder of Lamood LLC & Wallet Gear

There is no better time than now to find what you love doing, then chase your passion, not the money. The money will then follow you.

Howard Hunt

Co-founder of Framafoto

Don’t wait for the perfect conditions, but if you need more signals before you commit try Survey Monkey or Google Surveys pay-as-you-go market research platforms. These allow you to target online audiences for quick, low-cost reactions to potential messaging, product features, or purchase interest.

So, what’s your resolution for 2018? Leave them in the comment box, we would love to read them!

Sajjad Shahid :Sajjad is an Ecommerce Community Manager at Cloudways. He loves helping out Ecommerce store owners, merchants and marketers in establishing their businesses and startups. Sajjad enjoys playing table tennis and cricket over the weekend.