Launching is the easy part.
What can you learn from the pros about scaling and growing your apparel and accessories brand online?
Step 1 - Ensure you've got premium brand positioning.
What does this mean? When I say premium brand, I am not talking about expensive. I mean differentiated and different. You're not competing on price, it's about something else entirely.
How will you inspire and elevate your brand? How do you intentionally position yourself and your products in the market? If you're just starting out, it's likely you don't know the answer to this, and that is completely ok. The point is to start thinking about it and being intentional.
Step 2 - Figure out the best way for YOU to connect to and with your market.
Brands who create and share the best free content will always win. One great retail brand example is FreePeople. Free People's blog, "Bldg 25" is a complete brand play. Aside from a "shop" link they are not selling or focusing on their product, they are showcasing the lifestyle of FreePeople. FreePeople shares inspiration via cute graphics that are meant to be swiped, stolen and shared. They also have DIY inspiration and ideas, beauty tips and ideas, food and recipe ideas, and cute fashion centric ideas like "packing guides."
This process builds over time, and since you can do this at-scale (instead of having one-on-one conversations all the time) you'll attract referrals, and eventually press.
Also, beautiful free content is YOURS to do whatever you like with. Nobody is paying for it, and while you want to create something useful that people will love, you can do it in any way that you like.
Step 3 - DRIVE that traffic to your website!
There are a lot of ways to start working on driving traffic, and to be truthful, it's a bit overwhelming! It can be a full time job!
It's a little scary to think about purchasing online advertising. We start seeing dolla dolla bills flushing down the drain. I'm right there with you, but honestly this is largely driven by fear. It's easier than ever to get started with advertising online for really small amounts of money. These small ads and boosted posts won't move the needle a ton, but they will help you learn what type of content and posts do well, and what types of audiences are responding to you. So when you are ready to start increasing your advertising spend, you can do so with confidence. You don't need to jump both feet into the deep end of the advertising pool, start in the shallow end and slowly work up.
Don't forget about your email list! So many brands neglect their email list, sending emails so rarely their customers likely don't even remember who they are, or why they signed up. This does not have to be the case.
These people already know and like you! This is why they signed up. Your email list is money in the bank. So be sure to nurture them well. Send regular newsletters to your email list to stay connected, and make sure every customer who has ever purchased anything get onto your email list.
Step 4 - Determine your customer acquisition costs
Customer acquisition cost (CAC) becomes that magic number as businesses grow. It truly is something that can make or break a company as it scales. If your cost to acquire a customer is too high in relation to the profit margin you make on that customer, you are going to struggle.
When you're just starting out, it may not be easy to determine your CAC, but you can start by taking the amount you spend on marketing and advertising in total, and dividing that by the amount of new customers you acquire in a month. This is a rough estimate of your Customer Acquisition Cost.
So, if your customer typically only purchases one item from you at a profit margin of $10, but you spent $15 to acquire them, you need to find ways to acquire customers cheaper (hard to do), or find ways to retain your customers for future purchases (less hard to do).
This is just a brief snapshot of what you'll get in our free 5 day course. If you found this information useful, there is plenty more where this came from! Sign up free to take advantage and prepare your online store for scale and growth!