Branding irons from the 1910s.

Branding irons from the 1910s. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you’re an ecommerce seller, the competition is fierce. You compete against millions of other sellers, not just in the marketplace you put up shop but across the entire Internet.  Ask yourself – do you stand out? Look credible? Will buyers remember you? Will they come back and buy again? Will they recommend you to others?

A lot of that depends on your brand. Yes, images of a red-hot branding iron flash to mind. But forget about Bessie, what’s a brand today?

Apple’s Brand Promise

To understand a brand, it might be easiest to think of Apple. When they announce a new product, we have certain expectations before we know anything about it. These are promises the Apple brand makes to us. Most of us think: it will be cool, easy to use, elegant, empower us to do more…and oh yes, more expensive! These brand promises differentiate Apple from its competitors and help them get that extra money.

What’s Your Brand Promise?

A gentleman on a buyer’s panel at a recent eBay: On Location event said, “I look at sellers not as product providers but as service providers.” The reality is you’re selling yourself, your business along with your products. And you sell your business through your brand.

So what’s your brand promise? What would a buyer expect if they bought from you? Will they trust you? Expect a positive experience? Will they expect you to make sure they’re satisfied, no matter what it takes? What would YOUR buyers care about? Put yourself in their shoes (pick out your favorites) and look through their eyes. Why should they buy from you instead of the next seller in the search results? Your brand promise has to work for your business and your target customers. We’re all different.

It’s Everything!

How do buyers know what your brand promise is? It’s conveyed through “touch points” meaning everything that’s seen, heard, and touched associated with your business. So for eBay sellers, your brand is seen through your Facebook page, a website, your listings, the description design (if you’re looking to brand your eBay listings, check out the Billboards application – it’s free!), your policies, About Me, storefront (if you have one), and everything else! Each one communicates your brand.  What is your brand promise? Is it consistent across all your touch points? Will your buyers care?

Watch the Free Branding Webinar

Now that you know what a brand is, how do you develop your own? Watch a free webinar “Branding Your eBay Business” to learn. You’ll find out how to do a personal brand audit, how taglines and logos can make a difference, naming your business and so much more. You can read more about the webinar and sign up here.