Content Guidelines For Direct-To-Consumer Success: Let's Figure Out The Secrets of Growth
RP Singh, Founder, asiacontentnetwork
Online sales now play a more significant role in retail. Ten years ago, D2C companies created a new consumer experience that completely changed retail and eCommerce. As eCommerce innovation continues to impact consumers' shopping habits, more businesses are switching to direct-to-consumer marketing. As a result, global retail e-commerce sales earned around 4.9 trillion dollars in 2021. In 2022, Asia and the Americas can experience the fastest growth in e-commerce sales, as per prediction. Additionally, with an increase in online sales of more than 25%, the Philippines and India would take the lead. According to eMarketer, the amount can rise by 50%, or around $7.4 trillion, over the next three years (2025).
Manufacturers and brands increasingly utilise the Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) strategy to enter the market. One advantage of going direct-to-consumer is that the company has more control over its brand reputation, marketing, and sales strategies by removing the middleman between them and the consumer. In addition, few D2C companies targeted specific consumer needs and issues with specialised products and digital communications.
Here is all you need to know if your company is thinking about going direct-to-consumer.
In this article, we'll go through a list of best practices for launching your DTC approach.
What is Direct-to-Consumer (D2C)?
The term "direct to consumer," commonly referred to as "D2C" or "DTC," refers to a business strategy that enables businesses to sell and distribute goods directly to customers without the intervention of wholesalers or retailers.
These companies don't rely on conventional marketplaces and retail websites for sales and exposure. As a result, they can reduce expenses while maintaining total control over their goods' production, promotion, and distribution. Today, companies that distribute their products through conventional stores and other distribution channels adopt the D2C strategy.
Going D2C offers several benefits, but consumers significantly benefit from reasonable rates. Other benefits include freely testing new product releases on a subset of your customer base to receive feedback. Additionally, direct interaction with customers can also help you better understand them.
Why do Brands choose Direct-to-Consumer? 1. Owning the Consumer Data: Knowledge is power, and the more you know about your clients, the better you'll be able to follow their path, create new offerings to fulfil demand, and keep up with trends significant to your target market.
2. More Control over the Customer Experience: Direct feedback from customers can also help you enhance the customer experience by enabling you to react quicker to trends, customers' needs, or altering consumer behaviour. Additionally, you'll have greater freedom to focus on your sales strategy more precisely.
3. Better Connections with Consumers: Companies that connect with consumers by offering a better overall experience. For example, easier purchasing, quicker delivery, hassle-free returns, and quicker reaction to complaints. As a result, they have a better chance of becoming long-lasting brands.
4. Boost Profit Margins: By cutting out the intermediaries, manufacturers can increase their profit margins. D2C enables manufacturers to provide products at the same price as retailers, improving their financial situation.
5. Greater Brand Loyalty: With D2C, manufacturers have greater freedom to provide better service and support to their clients. They can use their customer relationship through focused marketing activities to establish positive connections and encourage customer engagement.
6. Expanded Market Potential: When selling D2C, manufacturers do not get constrained by region. Simply selling to the appropriate consumer segments in the relevant markets allows them to go global.
DTC Brand Examples
The D2C concept is used only by the following companies: Harry's, Casper, Burrow, Solo Stove, and Warby Parker. Let's examine a couple of successful direct-to-consumer stores in more detail.
In the realm of cosmetics, Glossier has been a tremendous success story. Emily Weiss, the company's founder, showed one of the more miraculous potentials in DTC by growing the company out of a beauty blog. As a result, she has avoided selling through traditional cosmetics stores entirely. Instead, its key selling point is its ideology, which demands that products be created by listening to customers rather than through boardroom brainstorming.
The company makes products in response to consumer requests and spends a lot of time and effort promoting discussion and feedback. It is now gradually broadening its sales channels to fuel its continued expansion.
Casper, a company that sells mattresses-in-a-box, claims to be setting a new standard in sleep innovation by producing cutting-edge sleep products that users can order on various retail websites and online marketplaces. Direct-to-consumer companies that wish to increase their customer base and open up new channels should consider this.
Kabeer Chopra and Stephen Kuhl co-founded Burrow. Burrow creates stylish, uncompromising modular furniture and other lovely items suitable for a modern household. For example, they made a high-quality modular couch that breaks into small pieces for you to pick and move easily.
Five Guidelines for Beginning D2C
With the annual growth in DTC sales, it's no surprise that enterprising manufacturers or anyone with a great product idea are leveraging this opportunity. Not to say that it's always easy, but the barrier to entry is lower than ever. Five points to remember when starting direct-to-consumer services:
Addressing a Challenge
One possibility that DTC businesses seized was to revolutionise the conventionally difficult buying process. For example, with Burrow furniture, you won't need to buy a new couch if you move into a larger living room, and you'll spend less overall due to a lower margin.
Pick a Daily-use Product
Selling regular goods instead of novelty items can be quite profitable in DTC. Moreover, since there is already a market for the goods, you are free to innovate. Therefore, you can alter the purchase procedure rather than start with a brand-new concept.
Let us see an example. Harry's redesigned men's razors to be hygienic, handy, and affordable, turning them into a subscription business. These businesses reduced the cost and complexity of purchasing razors while enhancing their value with powerful, successful branding.
Provide An Easy Returns Policy
Making your items' value clear to customers who can't see, touch, or test them out is one of the challenges of e-commerce. It is primarily for categories like clothing and home goods. For example, having a flexible return policy might ease clients' worries about making an online mattress purchase. They can rest easy knowing they can quickly return the item if it isn't what they were looking for.
Use Innovative Marketing Techniques
It would help if you had a clear and compelling value offer. Then, convey that story concisely and effectively across all platforms. Take a look at some of the most popular marketing channels:
•Email Marketing: If your clients are willing to give you their email addresses in exchange for brand content, use this intelligently, so you don't miss the opportunity.
•Content Marketing: Content marketing has several benefits to engaging customers with your brand. For example, suppose you're selling food products. In that case, you may produce reliable instructional content to inform your audience that your brand is well-informed.
Request Feedback from Customers
The majority of the time, consumers doesn’t base their purchases only on marketing messages. Instead, customers typically place a lot more faith in the advice of family and friends. Reviews, however, can come in second place; consumers want to see actual perspectives and experiences with the product to determine whether it meets their needs as predicted.
You can encourage customers to post photographs and descriptions of how a product performed (or failed to perform) in particular categories, such as fashion, cosmetics, and home appliances.