SMEs, how will you find new customers in 2022?

SMB, why would you benefit from using Amazon instead of Google to promote your products? The question may seem surprising given that Amazon is a sales platform and Google is a search engine. But still…

For a SME, the classic approach advocated by the ecosystem of web agencies specializing in SEO, Google Ads or digital is to create your ecommerce site and then propel it at the expense of investing in SEO or SEA in the first place. pages from Google.

It sometimes works, but more often than not, as an SME, the main keywords of your activity are monopolized by large groups, major e-commerce sites or marketplaces, with the very rare exceptions in niche markets.

Do the test yourself on Google with one of your keywords and you will find the listed companies on the first page. This is normal: their financial and marketing prowess ensures that they are present in Google’s first results. So should you stay stubborn in this classic pattern or think differently in 2022 to promote and sell your products with the most profitable return on investment?

Amazon has become a more used search engine than Google

My conviction for the past two years has been no, and it has just been reinforced thanks to two studies published this year that have gone almost unnoticed in the press. However, they represent a small revolution in finding new customers for its products.

The first, published in May 2021, conducted by Ad’Up Consulting and ifop, concludes that Amazon has become the leading product search engine in France for regular buyers. Extract from the synthesis made by COMK:

[ Lors des études Ifop menées par Ad’s up Consulting en 2013 et 2017, 93% des personnes interrogées avaient indiqué utiliser régulièrement Google pour effectuer des recherches sur Internet.

En 2021, la firme de Mountain View semble voir son quasi-monopole sur le Search en France sérieusement challengé, avec Amazon qui devient le moteur de recherche le plus utilisé pour 57% des acheteurs réguliers contre 54% pour Google. Une première ! ]

The second published in October 2021 by ChannelAdvisor in collaboration with Dynata on the behavior of French e-commerce buyers continues and concludes with “e-merchants therefore have every interest in being properly referenced on marketplaces such as Amazon”. Excerpt from the analysis made by BDM:

[Les canaux de découverte des Français : bouche à oreille, marketplaces…

Il faut aussi se poser les bonnes questions : où les clients découvrent-ils les produits qu’ils achètent ? Où faut-il être présent pour ne pas rater le coche ? Avec 37 % de personnes affirmant avoir découvert des produits par le bouche-à-oreille (40 % chez les femmes), la France est 5 points au-dessus de la moyenne des autres pays (32 %).

Les réseaux sociaux et les publicités sur ces réseaux sont les principaux canaux de découverte pour les 18-25 ans (54 % et 44 % respectivement). Les seniors (65+) sont en dessous de la moyenne sur tous les canaux, à l’exception des réponses “En parcourant des marketplaces” et “En parcourant des sites de marque ou des sites marchands”.

Les canaux de découverte des Français au cours des 12 derniers mois.

Près de la moitié des acheteurs recherchent leurs produits sur Amazon

Les acheteurs français sont plus nombreux à rechercher d’abord leurs produits sur Amazon (47 %) que sur les moteurs de recherche (28 %). On constate une forte prévalence d’Amazon comme première destination d’achat. C’est une tendance qui croît depuis plusieurs années : beaucoup d’acheteurs utilisent le moteur de recherche d’Amazon directement, sans passer par un moteur de recherche classique.

Les moyens utilisés par les Français pour rechercher un produit. 

Conclusion : les e-commerçants ont donc tout intérêt à être bien référencés sur les marketplaces telles que Amazon.]

These two studies show that Amazon has become the leading product search engine in France. A small revolution that must necessarily have an impact on your digital customer acquisition strategy.

Keep in mind that this does not mean that consumers only buy on Amazon, but that they use it as a search engine to find the product they want to buy. This means that if you are not visible or present on Amazon you may lose a large part of the buyers and especially regular buyers….

What impact does the market model have on your strategies?

To take things a little further, let’s take a look at the fundamental e-commerce movement that is also changing the situation, especially in terms of the purpose of an e-commerce site itself.

This fundamental movement is called the market model and is also seriously changing buying behavior in the world and in France.

Today, there are approximately 1 million e-commerce sites worldwide, including 15,000 marketplaces. This represents 1.5% of sites, but they generate 50% of global e-commerce revenue, and this trend has been growing since Gartner Predict announced it will be 70% of revenue by 2022.

On the other hand, this trend has changed the buying behavior of the French, who indicate that they are 34% to discover new products through marketplaces, ie the second channel of discovery after word of mouth: 37% (Study Dynata)

The big groups in France have also understood this trend and the financial importance to them of this model as they have all turned their e-commerce site into a marketplace, or are doing so… This is so true, just look at the TOP10 most visited e-commerce sites in France, according to the ranking compiled by Médiamétrie and Fevad, in the second quarter of 2021, and there are 8 sites that have adopted the market model…

This predominance of marketplaces means that your own e-commerce site as an SME becomes above all a means of retaining your customers, those who already know you, more than an acquisition tool.

And the conversion rate in all of this?

Indeed, the last interesting point is to see the conversion rate between an Ecommerce site and a Marketplace. It is generally accepted that the average conversion rate of an e-commerce site in France is around 3%. This means that out of 100 visitors to your site, only 3 will order. This rate is normal, because a number of visitors simply surf the internet as a hobby, without the intention to buy.

Conversely, a person who goes to a marketplace and especially Amazon will only go there if he has the intention to buy and even if the conversion rates are kept secret, they are generally estimated to be between 20 and 30%.

So investing in Google or Amazon in 2022?

Now that the framework and stated trends have been confirmed, the pragmatic answer is that it is better these days to invest and make yourself visible on Amazon than to try in vain to be on the first page of Google to find new customers. †

The numbers speak for themselves:

  • 57% of regular buyers in France use Amazon as the first search engine for a product (Ifop survey)
  • 47% of French e-commerce buyers search for their products on Amazon first before search engines (28%) (Dynata survey) not very French, or ‘himself’ at the end of the sentence
  • 34% of French buyers discover new products through marketplaces, the second discovery channel after word of mouth 37% (Dynata survey)
  • 70% of e-commerce sales go through marketplaces (Gartner Predict)
  • 20 to 30% conversion rate of a marketplace visitor to an order versus 3% for your own e-commerce site.

It is therefore essential to take this into account when allocating your budgets and resources for 2022.

Which strategy as an SME in 2022?

In summary, with these changes impacting your digital ecommerce strategies, it seems appropriate to me to define a strategy for acquiring new customers through marketplaces, then retaining them on your ecommerce site, if that there is.

In 2022, priority should be given to the following three areas:

  • Allocate the necessary resources to be or become visible on Amazon among 250 million references.
  • Strengthen or create a loyalty program worthy of the name of your ecommerce site.
  • Create a mechanism to retain these new marketplace customers on your own ecommerce site.

Easier said than done you would say…

Indeed, most of the SME’s I meet tell me that they can’t find qualified personnel for this kind of position, because it mixes different professions (SEO specialist, SEA, ADV..) and there is a shortage in the market. of e-commerce since the Covid crisis.

So often they entrust this task to non-specialized and insufficiently trained people. However, to succeed, you need to know all the little details that can help you regularly be in the 100 bestsellers in your category. To find out how to do this, I invite you to read our two articles published on the subject: “10 Essential Points to Boost Your Sales on Amazon and Cdiscount”, parts 1 and 2.

Finally, if you don’t want to be one of the 6 out of 10 entrepreneurs who are not satisfied with their results on marketplaces, then in 2022 it will be high time to take the subject seriously and allocate the necessary budgets internally or make an appeal. do on specialized service companies, such as ours. This saves you time and increases your turnover.

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