The online marketing for fashion can have many components. We will mention the most significant ones in the following:
Figure 1: Online Fashion marketing components
The biggest number of searchers on the web do a search via search engines. The most popular search engines are Google.com, Bing.com and Yahoo.com. There are three types of searches that can be done that are listed as follows.
- Organic search
The organic search is the search that is done through keywords. User come to a search engine site and type a keyword like “Fashion” or “The latest fashion” that describes what they are looking for in the search engine query box. The search engine returns all the websites that are indexed in the database that has that keyword. The list of the results that typically are web site links and their descriptions. It is the dream of every website developer and designer as well as the people who own those websites to rank on top of those search engine results. They dream and work hard to make their websites on the first page of the search engine results. The reason being that the user searching for something will only see the top results of the search engine and in usual cases it is the first page of the Search engine result pages. The art and science of bringing the website on the top is called Search Engine Optimization (SEO). We will take a look at SEO in further detail later on.
- Paid search
If you decide not to spend effort on organic results, then you can choose paid search. In that case, you pay some money to the search engine and that search engine will show the link to your website and other detail in the top results for the keywords that you have specified.
The paid search plays a very good role in enhancing the visibility of your fashion website. Unlike organic or natural search the paid site requires you to pay or bid to bring your site to a certain ranking. The search engine marketers have the freedom to create their own messages and self-select the locations where the ads can appear and the keywords searched. They can also see the statistics of the web users. They can see that how many have seen their listing, clicked on the listing and the percentage of the people who have taken some sort of action like signing up. As you know that you can come up with key phrases that you can include them in your website that can be used by users to find you on the search engine. You can also buy the key phrases the work best for you. A good management of your online investment should be in place. You should do proper statistical measurement for your online fashion business, this will lead you to a handsome Return on Investment (ROI).
- Local search
The search engine when it is opened in your browser will automatically detect your location, such as your country and city. After that it will show you the different links that are related to websites that are offering products and services in your local areas such as jewelry shops and boutiques.
As a shop if you are selling fashion goods and services and you are not global that means that you do not have arrangements to sell products other cities and countries then you can apply for a local search in a search engine. This way, if someone is trying to find out product and services in the local region you can be found in the search result of that particular web user. In the future when your business grows and you decide to go global you can hire a shipping company that will arrange delivery of your products to web users that is out of your business range and have a bigger chunk of the global market in fashion. There are several companies that are functioning on the web like eBay and Amazon that offer you to open a store and sell your products worldwide. It is always a good professional advice that you open an online store with them. This will give you vital experience of how an Internet business works. You can later on incorporate these services in your website and take your business to a global level.
One of the good things about Search Engine Marketing are the number of ways that local businesses can be searched and found in verticals like local search. The businesses like a fashion business can go to search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo and they can submit their business for local search. Once that happens the search engine might ask for address verification either by a phone number or sending a letter to the address where the physical business is located. This is called address verification. This verification proves that you are the person who owns the business at the location that is provided to the Search Engine, Your fashion site will be listed free in most of the cases. The submission of a business to a local business boasts the visibility of your local site.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
The search engine optimization is defined as doing modification to your website such that it will improve the ranking of the website in the search engine.
The higher the website goes on the first page of the search engine the higher the visibility for the website. It will make the website more popular among the web users. This you will have more visitors for your fashion business. This kind of ranking is called organic or natural listing. The SEO is not related to paid advertising.
All the search engines have algorithms or mathematical formulae that are used to calculate the ranking of websites as certain keywords or key phrases are punched in the search engine. The search engine returns the uses the popularity, its relevancy with key phrases or keywords, competition as well as many other factors to provide the rank to the website. The SEO experts usually say that key phrases work better than keywords when you are optimizing a website for search engines.
If your business is providing fashion products and services to a city like Los Angeles only then Search Engine Optimization should be done merging your business activity with the city name. For example, if you have a barber shop or a beauty parlor than you can use your business name and service with the city name to appear better in the search results.
You need to brainstorm all the key phrases before you start any of your SEO.
There three major factors to consider when doing Search Engine Optimization.
Architecture in includes the Uniform Resource Locators (URLs), the code of your fashion websites and even the cleanliness of your website. The SEO of a website also depends on the unique meta-tags per on every page on your websites.
The content can be sprinkled with smart key-phrases to enhance the SEO of the website. When doing content marketing of your fashion website you can find ways to use the key-phrases in your site content, blog posts, press releases and articles.
Link building is also a good way of improving the SEO of a website. The search engine looks for internal as well as external links on your website pages to rank your website. You can ask other website to link to your fashion websites if they are in the same category that is fashion. If more and more websites are linked to your website than your website will go higher in Search engine rankings.
Email marketing can be a very powerful means of marketing. Email can be used to cater marketing for a large or niche audience. Emails can be specific or can be based upon the list that is created by their previous behavior or purchases. There is a very huge number of web users that check their inbox regularly. Email Marketing, when used properly can become a very important marketing tool. It can bring down in the potential customers in the sales funnel and create better connections with existing customers. The most important thing in the email marketing is the carefully collected list of emails. You can create and grow your list by placing your opt-in forms in places like your web pages, your email signature or landing pages bring traffic from your online advertisement or links from social media. You can get people to sign in for your newsletters by showing the value of taking this action. The opt in means that the person coming to your opt-in page and willingly and indirectly says that I need this information. You have to make sure that your email list remains of high quality. If too many people flag your email as a spam in your email list can be blocked and the reputation of your fashion based company will suffer in the long run.
You can collect as many email addresses to send but if you send too any emails during a certain time you can get blocked. The ISPs are looking for automated emails passing through their filters in bulk. The email sending list no matter how large of small you company may be blocked. It is called being blacklisted in technical terms. After your email list gets blocked you have to wait for a certain time period to get back to the white sender list. The solution to this that you can get registered with larger third party ISP friendly email sender companies. This enables productive list management for scalability. There are many large scale email management systems on the internet like Aweber and mail chimp etc.
- Social Media Marketing
Social media mean the technical tools themselves. Social media includes thing like video, audio, pictures and text that is published and shared in a social environment. A video hosting site, podcasting site or a blog. The social networking is people or a group of people to network and communicate.
In general, Social Media can be anything from blogs, articles, videos, Facebook posts, tweets, LinkedIn posts, etc. It is one of the most important components of Internet Marketing. The search engines are very efficient to pick social media posts so they can be very effective. It is very good practice to make the content very entertaining and informative. It can backfire if you are posting to promote your business that is fashion products and services. Just create content that sparks interest in the audience and something about fashion that people like to see and hear. The true power of Social Media lies in when a content goes viral and more and more people are sharing content. This can significantly boost your sales on your fashion website.
- Content Marketing
Content can be thought of as something that bind together the steps of credibility, usability, visibility, sell ability and scalability as previously mentioned. It is simply defined that material that can be text, audio and videos that educates your website users. The objective to produce content is to make users know, like and trust us. When you are supplying them with a classy fashion product you can satisfy them with content that establish your authority in the field. This means that you are indirectly telling them that you know your trait and you have the knowhow and the knowledge of those products and services. There are several places on the internet where you can share content to gain the confidence of your website users. Those places are your own website, email, Press releases, FAQ, Blogs, Videos, Social media, Articles, Podcasts.
Figure 2: Content sharing on the internet
- Web Analytics
The web analytics provide you the information that you gain from the activity of your visitors on our website. You get information like how many visitors were there on your website in the last month or the last few days, how many of the visitors bought your fashion products, etc. There are many hundreds of companies online that provide you with this service and many of them are free. Web Analytics is a powerful tool that provides the measurements so that you can effectively manage your online website business.
- Article Marketing
Article marketing is also a very powerful means of marketing online. You can use your knowledge of “fashion” to create educational articles. When you write articles, always remember that you have to avoid any kind of commercialism and give your readers quality advice and information. You can write interesting articles, but never let the users know that you are selling him something like a fur coat or discount offer on a jewelry set. You should write as though you are speaking directly to your readers. It is a very good idea to introduce entertainment or humor in your articles but do not be promoted. Articles can be a standalone article page, It can be posted to a blog, It can be on your opt in email list or to an article marketing site. It is a good idea to reach out to the sites with that you share the target marketing that is fashion and provide them your articles and a link back to your site. Once the articles go live on the web they can be socialized i.e. If the article is good enough, it can be shared on social media.
- Online PR
Online Public Relations is synonymous your overall content marketing strategy. Online Public Relation is a very nice way to create your credibility, Visibility and Sell ability. There is a saying, “you are what you publish”. When you are experienced in the Fashion industry working as a fashion designer or fashion manager, you competitively know quite a lot about fashion. You can share this knowledge, you can share new products and services of your industry, you can share news and breakthroughs, you can share events, etc. The news about awards given to your company or professionals can be worth sharing also.
- Website Design
As it has been previously mentioned that the very minute details in the website design can be affective in the search engine ranking. The content of your website must contain quality keywords and key phrases. You can find out key phrase that will help your fashion website higher by using the online keyword tool from Google called Adwords. You just have to type keywords related to fashion and it will provide you with suggestions that you can add in the content on your website. Similarly, in the URLs of your subpages you can include multiple words separated by hyphens can also help your website to rank higher (Ross, n.d.).