10 Affordable Digital Marketing Tips for an Ecommerce Startup

Promoting a ecommerce startup

Now there are lots of ways to go about promoting your e commerce startup, but when there’s a funds crunch and every resource counts, then you better be careful about each step you take. Here are some tips, tricks and strategy suggestions that should help you better promote that e commerce startup of yours.


1. Stop spending money on increasing likes on Facebook Pages

Organic reach is at an all time low. Yes, you may hope that most of your customers may come from facebook, but there is simply no point these days in spending any money on facebook likes. Less likes and more hits on a website will lead to more conversions, concentrate on the latter.

Recommended Read : Stop Creating Facebook Pages, Start Building Websites Instead


2. Don’t use the boost post feature on your facebook page

The next temptation is clicking on boost post because facebook says it helps you reach out to more people. It does, but it is flawed. The right way to go about boosting a post is by going in your ad manager and targeting as extensively as you can. Make sure you choose interests, demographics as well as behaviour considering your target audience.


3. Don’t use twitter to simply promote, use it to hunt for customers instead

There’s a tool on twitter that most people don’t seem to use. Advanced Search. Use it to find customers looking for products that you sell, and then tweet to them in as personalised a manner as you can. Many many companies do the same, you should try it too.


4. Instagram should be on top of your mind

Pictures speak a thousand words, ones on Instagram can get you orders too. Upload pictures of all your products, customers, related pictures, banners and just about everything one by one. Add all the hashtags in the world that relate your product. Add your web address and a phone number if possible. Slowly people will discover. Slowly sales will happen.

Recommended Read : 10 Instagram Marketing Tricks to make your campaign Rock


5. Write about your startup, share your experience

Now this is a subtle, yet not so subtle way of making your startup reach your audience. This article made me order a Socratees tee. Stories about your startup, blogs where you share your experience, posts on LinkedIn talking about your business can earn you partnerships, admirers and customers.


6. EMail Marketing

The most important thing that most people miss out on. Now don’t start sending mass mails to lists you bought on the internet, but do this carefully and rightfully. Once somebody gets in touch with you, it is your job to engage them and make sure they come back again. You must subscribe to Utpatang and Nirogam‘s mailing list to see how its done right.  (Goes without saying you should subscribe to our mailing list too)


7. Facebook profile as a tool for promotion

Now stop acting shy, will you. You have started up and its time to tell the world about it. Be the salesman you ought to be, and sell. There’s no better place to sell than home and no better people to sell to than friends. They wouldn’t be the first ones to buy, that’s a different story, but you’ve got to harp on about the startup on your profile. Don’t sell the products directly, but sell your customer’s experience, their testimonials and just what you and the company is up to. If biggies like Vijay Shekhar Sharma (PayTM), Kunal Shah(FreeCharge) and Alok Kejriwal(Games2Win) can do it effectively, then so can you.


8. Partner

T.E.A.M (Together Everybody Achieves More) said an Archies Mug that I saw one day. What you can’t do alone, you can do together. Try looking for opportunities to partner, try to see how can you mutually benefit by partnering with somebody. This is often the most overlooked aspect of them all, yet the most effective. We go all gaga looking for partners.

9. Attend events

Now don’t just attend any events, but look for ones where you might end up finding relevant people to your domain. I made a lot of friends over the years at Indiblogger and Rodinhoods events, and many have turned out to some of the most helpful people over time. It is not about how many people a person networks with, but whom one meets that matters. Meet people offline, connect with them online, build relationships for a lifetime.


10. Stop Selling

Ya right. Don’t sell. Just become incredibly interesting. Ok, a little interesting to begin with. That’s how Happily Unmarried, Chumbak or Daily Objects became so big. They just became so interesting over time with their products, promotion and more. It took them lot of time, might take you a lot too. But if you concentrate on becoming more interesting with your products and as a company over time, then that’s lesser time you will spend on selling your products over time. Become interesting, people will want to buy themselves.


Think I missed on some important points? Please add them in the comments below. Hope this helps you e commerce portals on how to market and promote your startup better. All the best! For any related queries, comment here or head over here to our forum for getting answers to all your digital marketing queries.

Startup StayUncle just sent the coolest email of the year!

StayUncle Logo

Wow! Wow! Wow! EMail Marketing works. Here is how.

Its 2 am in the night as I write it, but I couldn’t help but post this right now. Saw this mail in the inbox captioned ‘I am on the way to build a million dollars company and I will tell you how’ and the text read “Hi Prateek, We are connected on LinkedIn :)” Now while that got me reading, it is only some minutes into the mail that I realised it was an automated mail sent via MailChimp sent so effctively that you can’t help but read it all the way through.

So I wouldn’t keep you from it, and would easily call this the coolest mail I’ve received this year. EMail Marketing professionals, that’s how you do it.

Mail reads –

Hi Prateek

We are connected on LinkedIn :)

A quick 3-minutes update seconds update over what has been going on with me lately.

If you read this till the end there will be small surprise waiting for you there.

I wrote to you last somewhere in February. I was getting ready to launch my first startup – www.stayuncle.com

I was a rookie at that time and needless to say the launching was a complete fiasco.

My own mother laughed at me. When will you realize you have no future in this poor country – she said.

She was at hospital at the time recovering from clinical depression. She keps blaming me for that.

We re-launched a month later. Noting better.

Around April we started seeing light at the end of the tunnel.

We were no longer doing one booking per decade. Transaction started happening daily. Well, OK every second day.

On May we got Ajay Naqvi aka Big Daddy to invest in StayUncle. He lives in Romania. His wife is really hot. and I kept her as my desktop background for a while. Please don’t tell him I said this.

That same month we moved into newer better flat at Hauz Khaz.

We bid farewell to Sanchit’s old bedroom. 

There was only one chair one table and a wooden bed. I used to sleep on it while Sanchit slept on the ground. Just one week before we got the money in our bank account, the chair collapsed.

May was a great month also because we got Nandi our CTO formerly working with General Electric. Sometimes he shaves his head for no reason. His mother is very cute. He keeps a Gurka (old Nepali military knife) in his locker, so please don’t tell him I said this.

Tough times returned during June and July.

I was absent from India and the core team was split. I am very bad at maintaining distant communication via Skype and stuff. Don’t ask where I was.

On August I was back triumphantly. We discussed the possible directionStayUncle would take on the basis the new learning we got.

We noticed that our most common customers are young unmarried couples looking for space to hang out privately.

I don’t know how much you know about India but this is a major issue here. Hotels refuse to let unmarried couples in because of cultural orthodoxies and fear of police raids.

That was THE moment

We decided to revamp StayUncle into India’s first online hotel booking portal which lets unmarried couples book a hotel for 10 hours and pay only for 10 hours.

Initially not much changed.

When you start running out of money your brain gets into power mode and the primeval instinct takes over. You lose the common code of civilized behavior. You start making sounds..


We weren’t radical enough. We had to turn fluid and re-invent ourselves in a way we could have never imagined.

We started selling neem sticks for 50 Rupees.

We started giving massages to boys all across Delhi.

We started selling tea on the street.

We evolved. New ideas started colliding deep inside us.
The guerrilla campaigns we started running made some people run after us and others full of gaze. Here is a preview of it

We were flooded with comments and plenty of critique.

They said in future you guys are going to face troubles from India’s moral brigade, Shiv Sena (a terrorist group) and perhaps even the police.

We say thanks and we leave. We could not afford to spend too much time around well-intentioned talkers.

We chose to hang around doers instead.

The team got bigger too.

We hired Tanmay from a dying startup. He almost started a fight once because a guy said something about his sister. (trust me she’s ugly).

Then Rajan came straight from his father’s threading factory. He has the funniest laughter you will ever hear.

In October we got Shravan, the brother of Ravan the demon with 10 heads and we daily enjoy his gambling stories from his past times in London. He used to sell SIM cards on the street at that time.

I don’t know if we are a dream team.

I do know that we managed to build something unique, a special maybe slightly dysfunctional family.

A family that sticks sticks together and get chased by the police.

A bunch of great people that must hide from their parents about what exactly they are doing (promoting pre-marital sex in India), else they’ll never get married.

How do I know that?

Recently I told them that we are likely going to be out of funds after two months and unless we nail it we are as good as dead. Therefore if someone is willing to abandon the boat in advance, and seek for greener pastures there will be no hard feelings.

All of them remained.

That makes it a dream team right?

The game is on and is getting hotter by the hour.

Media is buzzing about the unusual gang of boys holding posters around Central Delhi which say – Couples need a room, not a judgement.

They seem to be alone against the world.

They get a lot of high-fives too. The ultimate satisfaction comes when a person comes to them and says – I am your client guys. Keep up the good work. Entire India needs this. Your market is huge.
We get excited when we hear that. We like huge things :D

Yesterday we got the information that the community is nominating StayUncleas a startup of the year. I made a public promise that if we win the award, I will dress a saree and walk around Delhi for entire day. Cast your vote here.

I guess I can stop now, unless you have specific questions to ask me.

Here is the surprised I announced.

I have this weird habit of sending people a list of 10 ideas that could solve a particular challenge they are facing – business or professional.

Feel free to reply back with your challenge and you can rent my brain to you for a while.

Till we talk again Prateek.

Blaze @stayuncle

Copyright © 2015 Stayuncle, All rights reserved.
Hi. A quick 3-minute update from me. We are connected on LinkedIn :)Our mailing address is:


Gurgaon sub city

And if you are still wondering, you can download all your contacts from LinkedIn, and Mailchimp and most other ESPs (EMail Service Providers) allow you to use substitution tags to personalise emails. All I can say is Good Job you guys! And I am waiting for you for just writing this mail!

Making social media work for SMEs and Startups

Even though social media was coined a people’s medium when it came around, it is the big brands which seem to be making the most use of it, making small setups wonder whether they can even use this medium. Here are quick case studies of organisations from India that have gone from the unknown to being unknown thanks to Social Media. Features some of our clients at Green Smyles


Find more views, news and insights from the world of social media marketing at www.digitaldefynd.com