What Makes a Good Ecommerce Agency?
There are many ecommerce agencies out there and knowing what to look for when choosing the best partner for your own business is essential.
While it can be easy to get swayed by budget or promises, finding the right ecommerce agency means understanding what traits are worth watching for. From clear communication to creative energy, measurable experience and the latest tech and trends, here’s a shortlist of features you want to find when seeking the right ecommerce agency.
11 traits of a great ecommerce agency
1) Measurable experience & results
Measurable experience is important when it comes to choosing the right ecommerce agency, and this can shine through their results. Fortunately, a huge part of ecommerce marketing is having the data and statistics to showcase proof of return on investment.
If an ecommerce agency can present the facts and figures that showcase improved conversion rates, a boost in online sales, and a bigger following, this can be a good measure of the agency’s experience. Whatever your long or short term goals, you want an agency that understands and can strategize accordingly.
2) Full offering of services
For ecommerce brands wanting to outsource, you want to look for an ecommerce agency that offers a range of services. A good ecommerce agency should have the right experts in place to cover everything from web development to SEO, content marketing, branding, email marketing, social media management, paid media, conversion rate optimization, and analytics.
Hiring one agency that covers all the above means you don’t have to outsource areas to different partners and keeps everything streamlined, organized, and without the worry of crossed communication.
3) Up-to-date on trends and tech
You also want your ecommerce marketing agency to be up-to-date when it comes to tech and trends. In the digital world, marketing tools, trends, and algorithms all move fast so you want an agency that has their finger on the pulse.
It also helps if they have access to the latest technology and important tools for helping your ecommerce business to thrive, otherwise you may need to budget for purchasing these yourself.
4) They want to capture your brand vision
A good ecommerce agency will be interested in communicating your brand vision to the world. No two brands are the same, and for the agency to curate a strategy and plan that propels your business to success, they need to have a clear idea of who you are, where you are at, and where you want to be as a brand.
An ecommerce agency that asks questions, understands your values, and is actively engaged in your brand’s success can create solid ecommerce marketing strategies that align with your goals. A strategy or road map that doesn’t communicate or sync with who you are can derail your brand image and get you off track. Synergy is essential.
5) A solid team with a proven track record
Experience across the team matters. It’s easy for an ecommerce agency to woo you via a sales pitch, but before committing you want to be sure that the people who will be actually working on your project all have the relevant and necessary experience.
In the digital marketplace, it’s commonplace for agencies to hire interns or to outsource areas of their work. This is something you may want to consider as you want those who are working directly on your brand to be experienced and to have a proven track record when it comes to delivering results.
6) Strong project management tools
When hiring out of house, budget is always going to be a consideration for your ecommerce business. A good ecommerce agency will deliver results in a timely manner and will stay within budget. Of course, building a brand and obtaining results is not an overnight job, but outlining a clear idea of costs and time are good indicators of an experienced ecommerce agency.
You should also ask about the project management process within the agency so you can gain a little insight as to how the team works and communicates. The more streamlined this process is, the fewer bumps in the road you can expect.
7) Clear communication skills
Swift, clear, and quality communication are essential when it comes to working with any ecommerce agency.
When you have clear communication, you can avoid confusion and stay within budget and deadline restraints much easier. Ideas, expectations, deadlines, costs, quality, and feedback – all these things will need to be communicated throughout your working relationship.
Make sure that your ecommerce agency has a good communication plan in place, that they can be reached easily, that they are responsive to communication, and that they will react accordingly to any feedback or challenges should issues arise.
8) A creative energy
Creativity plays a huge role when it comes to branding, marketing, and strategizing. Getting your brand to stand out from the crowd is equal measures art and science and you need your ecommerce agency to have both cards in their hand.
You want an agency that comes with a good balance of practical knowledge and creative thinking, as these two aspects combined are what can really leverage you to new heights.
For example, creative campaigns can help you stand out, but without practical execution and SEO knowledge, no one will see your campaigns in the first place.
9) Curiosity and questions
A good dynamic between yourself and your ecommerce agency will be lots of curiosity and lots of questions. You want to find an agency that is a good fit, and they should also want to check if you are a good fit for them and to ensure that they can meet your needs.
You should never feel hesitant in asking them lots of questions and you should expect them to ask you questions, too.
If they show curiosity about where your brand is currently positioned, what marketing techniques you have tried, what your short and long term goals are, and if they are interested in your brand journey, these can all be good signs that they have your best interests at heart.
10) Flexible and easily adaptable
The digital landscape is ever-changing and shifts quickly – a good marketing plan should keep evolving to keep up with this. You want an ecommerce agency that is willing to embrace flexibility and scale up or down depending on the results and your changing needs.
Regular updates, check-ins, and data analytics along with in-depth knowledge of current trends and the latest tools and techniques should all play their part when it comes to informing direction.
11) Transparent in budget and scope
Transparency is always an essential ingredient when forging good working relationships, and the same is true when choosing your ecommerce agency. Your agency should be upfront about time, budget, and scope when it comes to delivering on your needs and desires.
It’s not always prudent to opt for the lowest priced option, but you do want to strike a balance between value and quality. Whatever budget you are working within? Clear and informed costing is important.