Ever-increasing competition in the eComm space is intensifying. The fight for market share, customer interest, and industry domination is more important than ever before, not to mention the need for constant growth leads companies to pursue new tactics every day.
Unfortunately, many eCommerce agencies are unaware of how they can be targeted by their competitors and fail to utilize the very tactics that could have given them an advantage.
Make no mistake - these tactics apply to all ecomm businesses, regardless of whether they're B2B or B2C, and their primary goal is to provide you with tips that can help you take advantage of the competition.
We've put together a list of the top 5 ways in which your competitors may be targeting you and will show you how to mitigate their efforts.
SEO spam is designed to trick Google and other search engines into ranking a website lower than it should be. The most common forms of SEO spam include:
Keyword stuffing is the malicious use of keywords throughout a website's content to manipulate search engine rankings. The problem is that Google is smart enough to recognize keyword stuffing - the result being that your visitors will NOT find what they're looking for, and the search engine won't take you seriously.
Link building is another technique used to manipulate Google's search index. This technique involves placing links on your website to other websites that have nothing to do with your site nor the subject of your site.
The result is that you could have several hundred links pointing to a website, all of which don't exist and have no relevance to the content within the main page. This is essentially spamming Google - resulting in a very low search engine ranking.
The best way to prevent this from happening is to make sure that your website's content is solid. If you have a website related to health, make sure that all of your content is related to health - not other subjects or products like exercise equipment.
If you're selling diamonds, don't write posts about the differences between white diamonds and black diamonds. If you use a blog on your ecomm site, make sure that all of the content on the blog is relevant and provides value for the visitor.
One of the most common forms of consumer fraud is a frivolous complaint. This term refers to sellers using legitimate complaints from customers to target companies that they feel are stealing their products or services.
This allows the seller to create a fake website that's completely unrelated to the subject matter and then use this as an excuse to target that digital marketing company.
First of all, make sure you know what your target company REALLY does. A good rule of thumb is that if you're selling products or services to companies in a high-level industry (e.g., banking, medical), then the company YOU'RE SELLING TO IS probably in the same industry.
For example, if you're selling luxury watches, then the companies that buy them are probably also luxury watch companies.
There's no denying that consumers love to share their opinions, good or bad.
Consequently, it's easy to see how the use of false reviews could be used by a competitor to influence a consumer's buying decision. But where do you draw the line between legitimate and false reviews?
For example, would it be considered false if a competitor hires a group of people to post negative reviews on your website with the sole purpose of making their own digital agency look better?
First of all, make sure that you're following Google's review guidelines. Google has a list of things that they do not allow.
The most important thing you can do is respond to legitimate complaints as quickly and honestly as possible.
Black hat marketing is a term used to describe any online marketing method (including social media) that violates terms and conditions or isn't white hat based.
Black hat marketers use this approach because of the speed at which they can place their products in front of consumers.
Make sure you're using white hat methods of marketing. If you're trying to gain more followers on social media, then make sure that you're not using fake accounts to gain traction. If you're offering discounts through social media, then make sure that these are clearly outlined within the social media marketing strategy.
The fifth and final tactic of ecomm businesses to watch out for is unethical practices. This covers tactics such as blackmail, extortion, fraud, lying, and using false identities to influence consumers' buying decisions.
The reason unethical practices are so prevalent in eComm is that it is a highly competitive sector. Hence, the goal of unethical marketers is to gain a competitive advantage through any means necessary - even if that means bending or breaking the rules.
The best way to address this problem is to have an ethical company policy that addresses what is and isn't acceptable within your company and then enforce these policies consistently and fairly.
Ecommerce agency space is full of sharks - even if they aren't competitors, there are still other parties out there trying to take advantage of your success and market share.
The key to staying afloat is making sure that you have a marketable strategy in place, including all of the tactics as mentioned above. Without these tactics in place, you're bound to be attacked by any one or more of your competitors.
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