The most effective digital marketing channels for your ecommerce website in 2020

Investing in digital marketing is one of the best ways you can grow your e-commerce business. In order to get new customers, you need to spread awareness and get your name and brand recognised. This is where digital marketing channels come in. Attracting visitors to your site is the only way you can generate sales. This article will talk about which marketing channels you should focus on to drive more traffic to your site. Some of the most important types of traffic to talk about are organic, paid search traffic, email, referrals, content marketing, social media and affiliates. We’ll look at many of the varied social media channels you can make use of. We’ll find out how effectively using each marketing channel can give your e-store a great boost. First, though, we will explore why considering the benefits of different marketing channels is essential for success in the e-commerce business.

Without further ado, let’s get into the detail.  

Why considering different marketing channels is vital to your success

Return on investment (ROI) decreases over time as users get used to seeing the ads on certain networks and start ignoring them. Therefore, marketers should make use of channels where the customer lifetime value is, at a minimum, three times the cost of acquisition.

In the event that prices are getting too high and impacting your conversion rate, or if you begin to see fatigue in a certain channel, there are three things you can do:

  • Widen the scope of your search terms.
  • Try to optimise key elements of your e-commerce site to improve your conversion rate.
  • Try a new channel.

You should take new and different marketing channels into consideration based on trends and forward-looking data. Those who depend too heavily on one single channel face losing traffic if something should happen to alter the status quo. For example, if Facebook closes an account, or Google updates its algorithm and you rely on those channels, you’re bound to lose traffic.  

Choosing the right channels to use to promote your particular products is key. You should utilise channels that fit with your monetisation strategy and your customers’ interests. When deciding which new channels to focus on, think about who your typical customer is and select a channel based on what they like and are interested in. It is crucial to keep an eye on your metrics and data so that you can see if the channel is effective and that your primary focus is where it should be. Monitoring data also allows you to see if your efforts are being proved worthwhile.  

Thus, finding the right balance between how you use tried-and-test channels and taking advantage of new, emerging channels is essential to success in e-commerce. Let’s move on talk about some of the most important channels to use.

Organic e-commerce traffic

This marketing channel includes all website traffic that comes from search engines like Bing, Yahoo and Google. People will enter a topic or specific product into search engines and find your website. If you have a well-optimised e-store, search engines like Google will rank you highly in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) so that it’s easier for people to find you. This is why search engine optimisation (SEO) is so important.

Email traffic to your customers

This digital marketing channel consists of all traffic derived from emails sent to your customers. These email messages can be part of promotional email campaigns, transactional email campaigns (e.g. order confirmations) or triggered email campaigns (abandoned cart emails). To drive more traffic to your website, you will need to develop your email list and increase the number of subscribers you have.

Paid search traffic for ecommerce websites

Paid search traffic includes all website traffic coming from paid adverts on search engines. It is also sometimes known as pay-per-click (PPC) or search engine marketing (SEM). You can create and run search engine campaigns on Bing Ads and Google Adwords. If you are attempting to drive traffic to your online store form this channel, you should focus on launching their ads on your chosen platform. These kinds of ads are great in terms of return on investment for your e-commerce business.

Content marketing related to your products

This digital marketing channel includes traffic that comes from videos, digital downloads and your blog. This is sometimes referred to as Inbound Marketing. Producing content that is helpful, informative or entertaining can help attract traffic to your e-store because valuable, good quality content will be pinpointed by search engines and is more likely to be shared on social media. If your content is shared on social media, this will serve to drive more traffic to your e-commerce website.

Connect with your customers through social media

The social media marketing channel consists of all website traffic which comes from social media networks like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Pinterest, among many others. Traffic derived from social media can be from either paid advertisement or free organic traffic. However, in recent years, it has been growing increasingly hard for e-commerce businesses to attract attention using free initiatives. More often than not, you’ll have to pay to get noticed.

You can consider launching adverts using Facebook Ads, Pinterest Ads, Instagram Ads or Snapchat Ads. You can, of course, produce and launch ads on multiple social media networks.   

Use affiliates to promote your online shop

This digital marketing channel constitutes all website traffic derived from affiliates in return for a commission on all completed orders placed in your e-store. Some popular networks on which you can launch an affiliate program include, Rakuten Linkshare and You can also cultivate and build relationships with coupon sites, cashback sites, online influencers and bloggers. 

Referral traffic

This channel includes any and all traffic coming from everything else on the internet, like apps, for instance. Referral traffic can be made up of sites running display adverts, digital newspapers, sponsored blog posts, as well as anything else which does not fit in with the 7 other digital marketing channels, whether paid or organic.  

Direct traffic to your website

This refers to all website traffic that comes directly to your website. This usually happens when people type your website’s URL into their web browser or when people click on pre-set bookmarks to access your site.

This type of traffic allows you to gauge the effectiveness of some of your offline marketing endeavours, like radio, TV or public events. If people view your advert on TV, they may later access your e-commerce website directly.

Strike a balance between tried-and-true and up-and-coming channels

When you have identified a good marketing opportunity, it’s advisable to spend most of your time working on that channel. Some of your time should be spent trying things out on other channels to see what could work for your e-commerce business. Search for the next low-hanging fruit.  

It may also be a good idea to set aside a portion of your budget, typically around 10%, so you can devote it to experimenting and testing out marking channels. You will then be able to discover what works and what doesn’t. That way, you can find a balance between more established channels and newer ones that work well for you and your business. 

Let’s take a look at some marketing channels you can try out when you’re searching for the perfect balance for your own e-commerce business. 


Quora is a Q&A site which makes it possible for brands to find users by answering related, relevant questions and promoting certain answers which can then be viewed by 100 million users. This is an impressive audience that marketers could exploit.

You can include a link to your landing pages below an answer you have provided. If you give people a well-written accurate answer to a query, it will garner many views. People who have read your answers and found them useful are much more likely to click on your link to find out more about you and your business. People who find your site via Quora also tend to spend more time exploring your site and reading the information you’ve put out there.

Quora is a forum which gives you the opportunity for you to gather insights, as well as an opportunity to drive more traffic to your website using backlinks. You can also use it to build trust with your customers and expand your customer base, all without having to put too much effort into it. You can leave your answers alone for a few months and they will still serve to drive traffic to your site. It has the added advantage of its ads being cheaper than both Google and Facebook, too. It boasts features such as keyword targeting, creating adverts and retargeting ads.


This channel is less competitive than others and has an increasing community of valuable users, which translates into higher engagement with audiences. It also means it generally costs less to use PPC advertisement. LinkedIn’s sponsored message adverts also work very effectively to drive traffic to your e-store and increase your conversion rate. The ads tend to work well because the ratio of active users to content creators is exceptionally low.


Reddit is a newer channel for marketers to take advantage of. You can use Reddit Ads to attract more traffic. This is one of the most visited websites in the world now. This means marketers can target people viewing specific subsets of content. This specific targeting makes up for the low traffic potential. It is also less expensive to advertise on Reddit than on Facebook or Google.

Voice applications

Reddit is a newer channel for marketers to take advantage of. You can use Reddit Ads to attract more traffic. This is one of the most visited websites in the world now. This means marketers can target people viewing specific subsets of content. This specific targeting makes up for the low traffic potential. It is also less expensive to advertise on Reddit than on Facebook or Google.


Brands and businesses can take advantage of stories, using them as a way to connect with followers and make themselves more approachable and relatable to visitors and customers. Stories can help you really establish your online presence, establish a connection with your audience and build lasting relationships with your customers. Stories are even thought to be in a position to soon overtake posts in feeds in terms of popularity. Stories are particularly popular with Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube users because they are getting through video content quicker.


Don’t discount Bing just because this channel has a smaller audience. Bing Ads are similar to Google Ads but cost significantly less to create and run. If you make good use of Bing, it has been estimated that you can derive 20% more traffic from this channel over time. 


This is a good marketing channel to prioritize, as today’s audiences are looking for instant gratification. People want answers to their questions as quickly as possible. By sending chat messages straight to their email, mobile or desktop you can respond to your customers in seconds.

Using personalised responses can also help you to build trust with your customers. You can use uses some chatbots to get names and email addresses. You can use chatbots as personal assistants as well as to help you deal with customer service. Messaging also works out to be significantly cheaper than using other channels of communication.

Text messaging

Text messages may seem intrusive at first, but they are a very useful way for you to connect with people who have shared their number with you. You can send messages detailing daily deals, as an extra incentive to shop with you, for example. Sending push notifications are an underused but effective marketing strategy that’s inexpensive and works well to help you gain more traffic and increase your website’s conversion rate.


To produce an engaging, interesting podcast you, as the marketer, should search your own network for ideas, topics and interviews. Bigger names are likely to garner more interest. Influencers will most likely have their own following and thus will add to your reach. Consider appearing on existing podcasts within your industry to expand your audience and grow your customer base.  

Live Streaming

The increasing popularity of platforms like Tik Tok, Twitch and LinkedIn Live demonstrates that live streaming is going from strength to strength. This channel has the potential to help many brands drive more traffic to their sites. You will want to do what you can to exploit this potential for the benefit of your own e-commerce business.   


Today then, we’ve discussed why it’s crucial to use many different digital marketing channels in order to succeed in e-commerce.  We’ve talked about the many different types of traffic you can drive to your site to help increase your sales and conversation rate in the coming year. We have also touched upon the importance of finding a balance between using tried-and-tested channels effectively and making the most of the newer up-and-coming ones. In addition, we have gone through some channels you can try out when finding out what works for your e-commerce business. Set goals for each platform you use and start testing things out in order to do this. We hope that this article has given you the confidence you need to start experimenting and finding out which marketing channels to use so that you can drive as much traffic as possible to your e-commerce site in 2020.    

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