Internet increasing focus on entertaining e-commerce

Consumers appreciate when e-commerce retailers provide entertainment along with valuable products and services

p>Online merchants likely know the challenge in converting idle website visitors into faithful paying customers. For many e-commerce merchants, an improved conversion rate was the reason they altered their marketing strategy, upgraded their website or switched to a PayPal alternative for credit card payment processing.

In that vein, some high-risk merchant accounts might actually have the upper hand when it comes to retaining customers. Online dating or gaming websites, for instance, provide services that inherently encourage consumers to visit their website over and over. For these websites, the challenge may have less to do with piquing a customer's interest and more to do with merchant account placement and management. The website itself can generate customers, but the business will need a payment processor that can handle subscriptions and a merchant account that won't be adverse to risk or heavy on fees.

However, how can other e-commerce websites, such as online retailers, engage with customers in a way that brings them back for more? Many recognize that traditional advertising and marketing can only go so far in the digital age, when more consumers view these strategies with a skeptical eye.

According to some marketers, entertainment may be the best strategy of all the available options for internet businesses. According to the E-Commerce Times, more online merchants – both big and small – are considering marketing efforts that inform and entertain customers.

Christine Marie, a marketing executive, told the news site that there's a future in this approach.

“The entertainment factor is what will help brands stand out,” she told the website. “You'll go to a website where you think you'll have some enjoyment.”

For e-commerce companies, that doesn't have to mean shelling out big bucks for an overproduced internet show or gimmicky YouTube videos. Experts note simple strategies, such as videos that describe how certain products are made, blog posts that introduce customers to the company's staff or interesting artwork and content can help develop businesses develop brand recognition and loyalty.