Magento 2 Certified Solutions Study Material 1.1
Online Merchandising

Marketing strategies

Omnichannel

There are many ways in which you can market using Magento, one of the best ways of doing this is called “omnichannel”. This term is a strategy of how a business can sell through multiple channels while providing their customer with the same/best experience possible.

Omnichannel marketing looks at all channels a customer may purchase your product through and should deliver the same experience. The customer should not care about the integration, they should only care about the fact that they can make a purchase from your brand through a certain channel.

Some examples of these channels are:

  • eBay
  • Amazon
  • Online
  • Physical shop
  • Mobile
  • Desktop
  • Tablet
  • Saas Connectors
  • Buy buttons (Social media)

When using the omnichannel strategy we must solve data management issues such as communication, inventory management, product management, order management and customer management.

Highlighting the integrations which the business requires is essential, this will help increase the user experience increase of both the client and the customer.

Some of these may be:

  • ERP -  Enterprise Resource Planning
    • An ERP system should aim to centralise facets such as HR, logistics and customer service.
  • POS - Point of Sale
    • A POS system is typically where orders are stored and invoices are created, accounting can also happen here.
  • CRM - Customer relationship management
    • A CRM is where you can store data about your customers, this can drive marketing strategies such as emails, re-engagement and others
  • PIM - Product Information Manager
    • A product information manager should be the true source of products, you can create new products and update products through the v1/products API endpoint

One of the aims of centralising the place in which you manage your data is to reduce the workload for the client, for instance, managing orders in 2 separate systems are going to multiply the workload when it comes to syncing product inventory, dispatching from warehouses and managing customer data.

After highlighting the integrations which solves the companies business problems best, next we need to actually integrate them into Magento. Magento 2 offers lots API’s, also it is now really easy to add custom API end points which are all abstracted through service contracts.

If you’re an extension developer looking for what endpoints are available for you; Swagger offers an easy way of documenting the API, Magento offers the out of the box URL for this but you can also download the JSON for this and add it to Swagger. For more information see Alan Kent’s post.

Useful content:

Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is simple, it’s a term which explains when one vendor earns commission from another vendor from a referral. Most companies on Magento will have affiliates, not pay them. What this means is that they will pay people for referrals rather than vice versa, of course, this is not always the case and depends on the clients business model.

Again, affiliate marketing just means if company x sell a product for company y then they get a piece of commission for this sale. Tracking affiliate sales from either direction is best done in a POS system, it can be done in Magento with some customisations, however I would recommend managing your data in a system which offers more powerful reporting.

Social marketing

Social marketing is when a company engages their customer base through a social media source such as Facebook, Google +, Twitter or other. You can help improve your social marketing by implementing “share buttons”, these provide an easy way for a customer to share a product on a social media.

Social marketing tends to only work on a product line that engages the customer, perhaps take this into account when providing solutions for your customer.

Email marketing

When a customer signs up on the checkout, Magento allows the client to provide the customer with an option to sign up to a news letter. This can be used to engage the customer with marketing emails, this particularly works well with a CRM.

Setting up an online store

Magento 2 requires compilation and provides automated tests, this reduces bugs and increases performance. Because of this though we need to adapt our deployment processes a bit from Magento 1.

It is recommended to add a build step, services like Jenkins or Atlassian’s Bamboo can perform this for you. What the build process should do is:

  • Run all automated tests
  • Build Magento’s DI and Frontend Files
  • Deploy to the environments server

Magento now offers Magento Cloud Enterprise, this will handle the whole build process for you. You simply push a branch to the environment which will build the Magento files, and spin up a new environment based on the GIT branch name. Currently, I do not believe this will run automated test for you. Other solutions are Nexcess, AWS and much more.

Other things to consider

When setting up an e-commerce store one of the best things you can do to maintain a high conversion rate is have a good search strategy. Setting up you products titles, descriptions and meta data is essential. You should avoid duplicate content and use keywords which relate to the product.

Maintaining these attributes will ensure customers can find your products both on your website search and search engines such as Google. Magento offers both elastic search and Solr which are much faster and should return good results if you’re product data is correct. However, I would always recommend using a third party integration such as Algolia.

Another way of a customer finding the correct product is a strategy called up-sales, this can be achieved by using Magento’s related products. Also, you may want to sell a customer a product which will go with their current purchase, this is called a cross sale which is default Magento 2 functionality. This can be achieved on the checkout or after a customer adds a purchase to their cart.

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