Did you know that the first sale made completely online happened in 1994? A man named Dan Kohn sold a CD for $12.48 over an encrypted website he built himself. These days, it is a lot easier to sell things online whether you are an individual, a small business, or a massive retailer. Since the 90s, e-commerce has come along path into a multi-billion industry. It also creates new job opportunities like digital marketers, email marketers, etc.
What is E-commerce?
E-commerce – the buying and selling of goods and services online. Most e-commerce purchases fall into one or more in four categories:
- Physical products
- Digital products
E-commerce has more flexibility compared to the storefront, which is faster, cheaper, and has a global reach compared to the storefront. It means that the barrier to entry is low. Anyone can open up e-commerce in hours and not days. As a result, digital marketing comes along to promote and market products to customers.
Digital marketing – the practice of reaching consumers online through digital channels with the aim of turning them into customers.
Digital channel – any communication method or platform a business can use to reach their target audience online. They are things like websites, search engines, email, or social media platforms.
Putting it together, e-commerce a place where business takes place while digital marketing aids the selling happens. However, digital marketing is more than that. It also helps businesses build trust, inspire loyalty, and better serve their customers. It is similar to the traditional marketing like the print ads, television and raditio commericals, but it has its own beneifts.
Advantages of digital marketing
- Cost-effective – unlike the traditional marketing, digital marketing can target the right audience at the right platform and the right moment.
- Reach more people – the introduction of smart phones have brought a lot of people online without geographical problems.
- Fast result – ads analytic tools can provide a faster result than traditional marketing.
- Build relationships with customers – personal communication with customers through social media or email.
What do digital marketing and e-commerce specialists do?
E-commerce is a big engine with many components, and digital marketing is one of them. If you enjoy writing, you might want to check out email marketing or blog content writing. If you are visual, you might be working with digital assets like images or illustrations. If you are into management, you might enjoy managing the e-commerce store. If you are a number person, you might enjoy spending time on pricing strategy or trends analysis for customer engagement. Regardless of the job title, digital marketing and e-commerce specialists’ responsibility will fall into the following categories:
- Audience research
- Creating or publishing content
- Updating product descriptions
- Analyzing data
Transferable skills for digital marketing and e-commerce
You might already work in different fields or have a different experience, but chances are that there are skills that you can transfer to digital marketing and e-commerce. Transferable skills are curiosity, an analytical mindset, and storytelling.
Curiosity – some people are naturally curious, while it is not the case for others. It is a skill that you can learn and master by asking questions, seeking answers, and trying new things. E-commerce is about being curious about people, what they want, how they think, and what motivates them to take action. Curiosity is also crucial because the industry can change so quickly. Keeping up with the trend and industry can help you succeed as it continues to grow and evolve in the future.
Analytical mindset – digital marketers and e-commerce specialists use an analytical mindset all the time. The idea is to look at the collected data to recognize trends and patterns. A great example is watching sport. You might have already used analytical thinking to predict the likelihood of who is going to win in the next game based on the past success or strength of the team member. Next is about communicating what you learn from analytical thinking.
Storytelling – how do you tell what you’ve learned? Storytelling is the way to that through data storytelling. Digital marketers use storytelling to turn data and statistics into engaging presentations and reports. It is also a way to share insights with clients and co-workers. It also helps to communicate with customers and keep them engaging through visual storytelling. That’s what most ads campaign does to their audience. It sells you not just an idea, product, or service but a story. Without a storytelling, the ad itself is not engaging, and you won’t buy into it.
Comparision of core skills in different roles
Similar skills are required for roles in digital marketing and e-commerce. However, these skills are often applied in different ways. The following table gives you an idea of how job responsibilities might differ slightly between entry-level roles in digital marketing and e-commerce.
|Areas of focus||Digital Marketing Coordinator responsibilities||E-commerce Analyst responsibilities|
|Business objectives||Identify campaign business objectives||Ensure customer interactions align with business objectives|
|Search engine optimization (SEO)||Follow SEO best practices||Use SEO to maximize traffic to website|
|Social media marketing||Draft social media copy and obtain approvals||Ensure social media ads increase traffic to website|
|Email marketing||Execute and monitor email campaigns||Ensure email ads generate desired results on website|
|Marketing analytics||Analyze data fromm marketing campaigns||Analyze data from website or mobile app|
|Content design and copywriting||Assign content development and track progress||Edit content on website|
|Loyalty programs||Monitor acitivies of returning customers||Execute and monitor loyalty programs|
This information should give an idea of digital marketing, e-commerce, and career paths. It is now your turn to dive more into the one or more areas that interest you.
Happy learning and good luck!