The truth about most ecommerce brands

Last updated: November 20, 2023

Aaron Rudman-Hawkins

Aaron Rudman-Hawkins is a dynamic digital marketing expert and a driving force behind The Evergreen Agency's success. With a passion for technology and a deep understanding of the ever-evolving digital landscape, Aaron has become a trusted name in the industry.

Read Aaron's bio here

I’ve had more conversations this year with ecommerce brands than I ever have before. We’ve even been lucky enough to pitch to some of these brands!

With some wins under our belt, as well as some losses, we’ve come away with some fantastic insights into the current retail and ecommerce industry, which I think you’ll be interested to hear more about.

With each conversation I have, I’m starting to notice a handful of common struggles that most brands seem to be experiencing right now.

So, for this Ask Aaron, I’ll be diving into what these challenges are, and how we’re helping brands to navigate these, allowing them to push through and achieve fantastic online growth.

Let’s get into it.

Over reliance on paid traffic:

Firstly, there is a staggering dependence on paid traffic among ecommerce brands of all sizes.

While paid traffic is undoubtedly valuable, an over reliance, sometimes constituting 40-50% of total traffic, can create some serious challenges. Addressing this issue is VITAL for any brand looking to achieve sustainable growth.

Branded traffic dominance:

Many brands, both established and emerging, are revealing a significant reliance on branded traffic. Balancing branded and non-branded strategies is essential for expanding reach and finding new customers beyond the comfort of brand-specific searches.

Organic strategy procrastination:

The organic side of online visibility often takes a back seat, with brands prioritising the quick returns (especially right now) that paid strategies can provide. Emphasising the long-term benefits of SEO and content marketing, we advocate for a balanced approach to ensure sustained growth over time.

Digital PR misconceptions:

Brands commonly dismiss digital PR, due to it previously being falsely communicated to only work with viral campaigns. This simply isn’t true! We introduce a fresh approach, focusing on relevance over virality, redefining the perception of digital PR and its effectiveness in building brand presence.

Conversion tracking challenges:

The complexities of conversion tracking, influenced by GDPR, iOS updates, have caused brands to get into a bit of a mess when in comes to tracking. Untangling this mess, ensuring accuracy, and leveraging historical performance data are crucial for making informed, data-driven decisions.

The amount we’ve had to unpick before stitching back together this year has been mind-blowing… But it’s so common amongst brands!

Our approach when tackling these issues:

Long-term vision planning: We’ve encouraged brands to think beyond immediate gains and define success in the long term.

Organic growth strategy: We’ve introduced and implemented comprehensive organic growth strategies to complement paid effort and see our brands through.

Promotion and PR approach: We’ve worked hard to educate our brands on the asset that is promotion, using a unique strategy that prioritises relevance over virality.

Conversion tracking solutions: We’ve untangled the complexities of conversion tracking, ensuring accurate data that we can then present to brands for strategic decision-making.

If you’ve resonated with any of these challenges, rest assured, you’re not alone. The retail and ecommerce industry is a dynamic space, filled with many hurdles and opportunities.

By recognising and addressing these common struggles, you can easily begin to scale your brand, ensuring some fantastic future growth for the coming years and beyond.


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