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What is a product launch strategy in eCommerce?
Work Management
Last modified date

Jun 26, 2024

Project Management for eCommerce Product Launch in 7 Steps

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Carl Torrence

Blog average read time

6 min

Last modified date

June 26, 2024


The time has come.

You have done your due research, invested in innovation, and are ready to launch a new product on your online store. But you cannot simply add a new product to your catalog and call it a day.

You need a pre and post-product launch plan using project management techniques.

How can you do that, you ask? Let’s take a look.

What is a product launch strategy in eCommerce?

Product launch strategies involve a set of practices that an eCommerce brand employs to introduce a new product in the marketplace. It involves setting goals, researching, testing, and marketing the product before and after launching on your online store.

Research suggests that eCommerce sales could reach 23% of all retail sales globally in 2027. Considering that the competition is getting more intense and the need to match the consumer is higher than ever before, you need to give a lot of attention to every product you launch on your website for it to succeed.

The best eCommerce product launch strategies include a clear project management plan, PR campaigns, personalized marketing strategies, and even bug management strategies. This is an ideal way to cut through the competition and understand customer needs.

To create a successful project management strategy for an eCommerce product launch, you need to consider the following aspects.

eCommerce product launch in 7 steps

1. Do a thorough competitor analysis

Before you go into the ‘hows’ of the product launch, you need to have a clear vision for the ‘whys.’ And for that, you need to start with competitive research.

What are their current marketing strategies, and what do they do best? What are their weaknesses? Did it manage to generate a good return on its product launch campaigns?

This will also give you insights into the top trends and the top mistakes that some online stores make that you can avoid. See the top platforms they used to launch, the type of hype they created, the influencers they worked with, and so on. You can divide your competitor analysis into:

  • Social Media Presence
  • Pricing Strategies
  • Customer Loyalty Strategies
  • Sales and Marketing Tactics

2. Understand the needs of your target audience

Most brands (1 out of 5) need to improve their liaising with the target audience. Based on competitor research and combined with your ideal customer personas, you can dive deeper into what your customers need.

Besides, if you are launching a new line of products, you might also be catering to a larger audience. You’d have to research your new target audience and how they differ from your current customers.

Only launch your product once you know that you have the right audience, if they need your product and have the purchasing power. Have answers to these central questions:

  • Need: Is your product offering a solution to the target audience’s problems? Do they realize the need for your new product?
  • Features: What are the unique features you’re offering, and how does that fit into the overall solution that you’re proposing?
  • Cost. Is the price within the purchasing power range of your target audience?

3. Establish clear goals with KPIs

Once your answers are ready, prepare your project management goals for your product launch. A product launch is an intricate process that requires a set of KPIs and goals. These make it easier for you to measure its success and understand what you did right and wrong.

When you set your goals, ensure that they’re realistic and achievable. The best way to go about it is to follow the SMART formula where the goals are:

  • Smart
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

While setting goals for your product launch, remember to take care of these three things:

  • Specify Requirements

If you have launched a product after considering the target audience, specifying the requirements of your launch should be easy. You need to define how the product satisfies your revenue goals and your customers’ needs. What is the current customer journey, and what would the customer journey be for the new products? It helps you gather the requirements for the launch.

  • Allocate Resources

Determine the required resources, such as project management tools for product launches, people, finance, and technology, to execute the project. Ensure that you have the right skills and expertise before you proceed with the launch plan. Additionally, integrate no-code platforms into your workflow to enhance efficiency and streamline processes, allowing smoother task execution.

  • Define a Deadline

Prepare a realistic timeline for the launch that covers the pre-launch activities, the actual launch, and the post-launch activities. How long will it take for the marketing plan to roll? When will the products be released? Most product launches take the waterfall approach, where one stage can only commence once the previous one is completed.

For example, before you launch the product, you need a distribution plan, and before the distribution plan, you need the content plan ready, etc. Set a product release date to create anticipation of when customers will get to buy the product. Have clearly defined stages along with dedicated activities at each stage and a complementing marketing plan for each stage.

4. Use Project Management Tools for eCommerce

Having the right tools for your launch can considerably reduce the burden on your team by automating key tasks. Project management tools with the latest features can scale your business smoothly, keep your team on track with their tasks, help them collaborate, and save unnecessary costs.

To manage the entire launch project, you can leverage project management tools like Paymo that help you assign tasks to team members, add deadlines, and add signs of progress to keep everyone on the same page. During and after launch, you can also consider including marketing automation tools like SE Ranking to help you manage your social campaigns, marketing campaigns, influencer campaigns, etc.

5. Continuous Testing

Testing in eCommerce is essential to know where to improve your website to generate more conversions. You can run A/B variants to check the performance of your websites and new product pages, plan some website updates, and draft them. Some other things you need to consider in the testing stage are:

Checkouts and Payments

Checkout is one of the most important stages in the eCommerce buying process. When launching a new product, ensure its product page performance is optimized, and the checkout process is smooth. Users can often encounter technical issues and slow-loading pages at checkout.

Leverage eCommerce monitoring platforms that help you quickly find and fix these issues. Also, check if you have all the payments and delivery methods you wanted and if each payment method has successfully integrated with your platform.

Integrations

Check if you have tested all the integrations, such as Google Analytics, third-party integrations, delivery systems, and other marketing trackers (website analytics, CRM, etc).

SEO Checklist

Ensure that the new product pages are optimized for search engines. This includes using the right keywords in your website and landing pages, optimizing page speed, URLs, meta title and description, and ad campaigns.

If you’re utilizing blog posts and eBooks for your product launch, you need to optimize these, too, for a better ranking. Ensure that you find relevant topics for your new products, have internal links, and add CTAs to landing pages.

Product Pages

Check and optimize your product pages. Ensure that the images, fonts, and cross-selling suggestions are visible and that there are no broken links or product images. Leverage social proof for your product pages to increase the chances of getting more conversions.

6. Launch and promote

This step involves acting on the hype you created and launching your product. You can leverage influencer marketing, social media, landing pages, and customer loyalty programs to promote your product.

Influencer marketing is a great way to garner attention for your overall social media marketing campaign. However, ensure that you collaborate with an influencer who reaches out to your target audience.

Social media is also the perfect place to leverage giveaways and competitions to organically spread the word and encourage customers to pre-order your new launches. Add some social proof to persuade customers to buy your product.

Loyalty programs are crucial since repeat buyers spend 67% more in their lifetime value (LTV) than new customers. If you’re targeting repeat customers, you have a higher chance of closing a sale than acquiring new customers.

7. Monitor the launch through excellent customer service

Project Managers need to accurately check and measure the performance of the launch, manage the communication, and check for any iterations and improvements required for the launch.

Customer service is also essential to the success of new product launches. Ensure that multiple avenues for customer feedback, such as live chat, emails, and phone support, are available. Respond promptly to queries and take accurate action to ensure a positive shopping experience.

Wrapping Up

Managing an online business is no easy feat. With new launches and managing existing customers, ensuring a successful product launch every time is challenging. However, with these set practices in place and the right team of project managers and marketers, it is not entirely impossible.

Leverage the right tools and methodologies to execute detailed project plans, and you can create a winning product launch strategy and return customers.

Carl Torrence

Author

Carl Torrence is a Content Marketer at Marketing Digest. His core expertise lies in developing data-driven content for brands, SaaS businesses, and agencies. In his free time, he enjoys binge-watching time-travel movies and listening to Linkin Park and Coldplay albums.

Alexandra Martin

Editor

Drawing from a background in cognitive linguistics and armed with 10+ years of content writing experience, Alexandra Martin combines her expertise with a newfound interest in productivity and project management. In her spare time, she dabbles in all things creative.

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