Editor's Note: Joydeep Bhattacharya is a digital marketing evangelist who writes for SEO Sandwitch. Today he joins us to discuss digital goods, and how to sell them online.
Selling digital goods was once a complicated venture, but over the years and with the introduction of numerous online services and tools, it is now much simpler.
Digital products are informational in nature. They may exist in many formats, including eBooks, audio or video courses, bulletins, programming and access to membership sites.
7 unique aspects of marketing digital goods
- The target audience for digital goods is unique. Your customer base stands to be benefited by your product, but may not be aware of its existence precisely because it did not exist before.
- It follows that product discovery is often not accompanied by a desire to purchase; this makes your marketing message highly important.
- Price is less of an issue because it costs less (or even nothing) to create copies of digital content for the maker.
- Mechanism of sale is very different from traditional or online commerce; whereas physical goods may be sold in online stores, digital goods often require an individual landing + sales page. This is especially well for one-off items like e-books.
- There are also specialized selling platforms for digital products, and some will be reviewed in this article.
- ‘Packaging’ heavily influences the sale of a digital product. The way you design your landing page, cover art, etc. will influence the initial interest it generates among audiences.
- Digital goods often come with additional bonuses that raise the perceived value of the purchase for the audience.
These core differences in the nature of e-commerce of digital and physical goods change the game for marketers. Read on to learn how you can formulate and execute a better plan for selling digital goods -
Selling Your Products Directly
E-junkie is a very simple marketplace that uses HTML codes to generate great product pages for your digital goods. It's a great and easy choice for beginners: simply create an account on the E-junkie website, list your item and install the code on your site.
Once you get started, you'll be able to manage a lot of different options including inventory management, affiliate management, Google Analytics tracking, and more.
An advantage to E-junkie that sets it apart from other options is that you will not be charged a percentage or portion of your sales. Rather, you'll have flat monthly subscription fee which starts from $5/month.
There are many services similar to E-junkie if the format works well for you: others include Easy Digital Downloads, SendOwl, Gumroad and Sellfy.
It's impossible to mention digital goods without discussing PayPal. PayPal has been a staple of digital commerce for many years, especially because of its strong protection policies that prevent sellers and buyers from being scammed. has always put their efforts in protecting buyers and sellers from all kind of scam. You can integrate PayPal into a WordPress website and use it to sell digital goods with a simple plugin.
The WordPress PayPal Shopping cart is simply a plugin which will help you to sell your products from your WordPress website with one click.
In order to set up:
- Download the WordPress Simple PayPal Shopping Cart plugin and upload it your site.
- Activate the plugin through your WordPress “Plugins” menu.
- Click on "Settings"
- Configure the options to your liking. This can include your email address, your shopping cart name, and the URL users will return to after purchasing.
- Navigate to a page where you want your product to appear.
- Make use of the trigger text to insert the product into your page.
- Publish your page when you’re ready.
Marketing Your Digital Goods – How It’s Done
Finding Opinion Formers or Influencers
Influencers are those whose opinions, attitudes and activities influence others. Getting these people to like your product is a great way to spread the word. Start by researching the most important figures in the market you are selling to; then, reach out to them and pitch your product.
Blogger Outreach and Guest Blogging
This is a 2-pronged strategy that works well when your digital products are centered around information or education (for instance, courses, webinars, books, etc.).
First, identify the most influential bloggers in your niche, and reach out to them with your product hoping for some coverage on their blogs.
Sharing free samples often does the trick here. You can also become a guest blogger on their blog or invite them to become a guest blogger on your blog and target readers with proper landing pages that lead to your course.
Sam Ovens - master entrepreneur and online educator - does this brilliantly, not only by maintaining a high quality and much followed blog of his own, but also by contributing to other blogs and getting fellow bloggers to chip in with their insight on his courses.
Tip: AllTop is a great tool for finding popular blogs relevant to a topic. Just search with your main keyword and you’ll see a list of categories. Click on the closest match to make your list.
Get Some Product Reviews
Expect any potential customer to research your company on Google, and prepare for this by making sure that solid and positive customer feedback is easy to find. Invest effort towards:-
- Capturing genuine positive messages by sharing free samples and curating them on your landing pages, along with proof of authenticity.
- Requesting that shoppers leave reviews on at least a couple of review websites, in exchange for discounts on subsequent purchases.
- Looking to be innovative? Create a podcast with a customer who’s benefited from your product; host a webinar, and think out of the box.
Note: Never solicit positive feedback, as this is considered unethical by most major online retailers and users. Ask for honest feedback, and make your product great so the reviews will be too.
There are a few important tips to adopt if you want to gain a bigger presence in the marketplace of digital goods. Here are a few -
Offer a special reward: Everybody adores free gifts with a purchase. That is the reason numerous digital products include free digital books, worksheets or other resources with a download. It’s an additional perceived value that can persuade doubtful customers to finish a transaction.
Always test: Testing is time consuming, but gives you the sort of information that you need to set the ideal price for every product. It will also help you in to see the real results with every methodology you apply, which will enable you to pick the best pricing approach.
Know the market and price competitively: Finish a competitive analysis and assessment in order to know how others in the business are selling similar digital products. At that point price yours to position it against the opposition. On the off chance that your product is especially unique, include content that your competitor’s products do not include and consider pricing that is marginally higher.
Learn more with these related OMI classes:
Visit the Online Marketing Institute to browse over 400 classes in the digital and social media marketing space.