How To Market Your Retail Business Online


It’s one of the biggest challenges facing New Zealand retailers today:

94% of Kiwi web users are researching products online, long before they consider stepping inside a retail store.

More than half of those then go on to buy online – even though, if they only knew, the products they wanted just might be available to them locally, easy to pick up or have delivered, often at competitive prices.

But many Kiwi retailers simply aren’t actively marketing online. Some don’t even have a website. Others aren’t sure where they should be spending their time or money.

If that situation sounds familiar, help is at hand. We’ve just developed a new online training course to help you develop an effective online marketing programme.

How To Market Your Retail Business Online

This is a ten-week online training course providing a comprehensive introduction to Online Marketing for Retailers, from the basics to detailed instructions on how to build and run a programme.

This eCourse is conducted on a web-based e-learning software platform, enabling course participants to proceed at their own pace, accessing materials online. This particular eCourse provides content in a variety of multimedia forms, including videos, slideshows, flash-based presentations and PDF files. No special software is required to participate.

Course lessons will be provided over ten weeks, for participants to access in accordance with their own timetables.

Course Content

The course covers the following topics:

Lesson One: Establishing Your Web Presence

In this first lesson, we examine the key elements that you need to consider as you set up (or review) your website. We discuss the principles of online marketing (and what we can learn from 100-year old direct marketing principles). And we help you to begin your online planning process, even if you intend to outsource most of the elements. We also tell you where and how to claim your digital identity online, on sites such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+, Skype, LinkedIn, Trade Me, eBay, gmail and more. We’ll also talk about how you can track the effectiveness of your online marketing efforts through free services such as Google Analytics – and how you can keep watch on both your competitors and your customers in just ten minutes a day.

Lesson Two: Google Places

If you run a local retail business, the next most important territory to stake out (once you’ve claimed your digital identity) is Google Places. It’s free, and for many online visitors it’s the first place they’ll encounter you online. We talk you through the information you simply must provide and the wonderful additional opportunities that Google makes available for smart retailers like you.

Lesson Three: Getting Found In The Search Engines

It’s very easy to be overwhelmed by Search Engine Optimisation and all the scientific mumbo jumbo surrounding search engines. We cut through the orchestrated litany of linkjuice jargon and explain the core principles you need to know to get your business found on Google, Bing, Yahoo! and other search engines.

Lesson Four: Email and the power of the Mailing List

Email is still one of the most powerful weapons in the online marketers’ toolkit. In this lesson we examine what you need to know about email, how to avoid running afoul of the Anti-Spam legislation and how to create emails that your recipients will welcome into their inboxes.

Lesson Five: Mobile Marketing Opportunities

More than half of us now use our smartphones to go online – and that has huge implications for retailers. The statistics are already frightening: 36% of Kiwis have shopped online via a mobile device during the past 12 months (NZ Online Shopping Survey, PwC and Frost & Sullivan, July 2012); 70% of smartphone owners have used their mobiles to check store locations and hours; 43% have used their phones to read customer reviews and 30% have compared prices while in store. If you’re not ready for mobile, you’re putting the future of your business at risk.

Lesson Six: Advertising Online

Once you have your web presence established, how do you attract traffic? We look at Pay Per Click advertising on Google and Facebook and their associated networks, take a look at the Video On Demand possibilities and consider Directories, Classifieds and Display Advertising. It’s possible to waste a lot of money online; in Lesson Six, our aim is to save you from all that.

Lesson Seven: Going Social

In this lesson we examine Facebook, Twitter and the other social networks, share some numbers with you (did you know that there are 1,256 NZ Facebook pages categorised as Shopping/retail, with an average of 790 Likes per page?) and discuss how you can use Social Media effectively to engage with your customers and prospects.

Lesson Eight: Selling Online

In this lesson, we discuss how you can make ecommerce work for you (should you wish to add that option to your web offerings). We talk about the 71 secrets of effective product pages and the 20 classic ecommerce mistakes you should avoid; and how to remarket to visitors who have left your site without buying.

Lesson Nine: The Deal Sites & Services

In Lesson Nine, we take a long hard look at what’s on offer with Daily Deal Sites – and identify the key decisions you absolutely must make before you sign up to offer any daily deal (and how you can lose your shirt if you don’t prepare properly). We also examine some of the newest special offerings on the market, including Google Shopping, Facebook Offers and Facebook Gifts – and what you need to do to make the most of these services.

Lesson Ten: Improving Conversion Rates

Finally, we look at what you need to do to sharpen your sales results (which is what online marketing is all about, at the end of the day). We don’t wish to lapse into jargon at this late stage, but we will have to talk you through Landing Pages, A/B Testing, Conversion Rate Optimisation and other services which have unfriendly labels (but which we’ll make as user-friendly as possible for you).

Course Creation & Tutoring

This course has been created and is tutored by Michael Carney. Michael is a highly-experienced marketer with an insatiable passion for whatever’s new, different, exciting or interesting in the world of communications. Michael has been in the marketing game since 1971, online since 1987 — in a diverse range of roles, including digital marketing trainer, adman, media director, strategist, researcher, copywriter and consultant.

Michael has been an early devotee of ecommerce, providing advice and assistance in that space since the early 1990s. He also conducted an extensive analysis of New Zealand’s leading ecommerce operator, Trade Me, culminating in the top-selling book TRADE ME SUCCESS SECRETS (now in its second edition).

Who Should Take The Course

Any retailer aiming to improve their online marketing skills.


This course is not currently available. If you would like to be advised when it is available, please email us at info (AT)

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