ecommerce catalog marketing

With all the tools available for online marketing, why would an online store ever consider printing and mailing any marketing materials, much less a full catalog? The truth is that print and direct mail marketing still have a higher return on investment than almost every other type of marketing, save only for telemarketing.

If it’s hard to believe that people still prefer to receive a catalog in the mail than to perform a Google search, then you should consider this particular statistic: 45% of customers browse catalogs before making an online purchase. That’s almost half of consumers everywhere. And when you consider that number comes only from companies that use catalogs, it’s easy to believe the number would go up if more online retailers sent full-color books and magazines.

If that’s not impressive enough, consider that 54.4% of consumers browse catalogs before making a purchase in a brick-and-mortar store or by phone. What’s going on? Why are so many people turning to catalogs before making a purchase? How much would it cost for you to begin your own catalog marketing campaign? How does the direct mail campaign mesh with an online store? Well, let’s take a look.

Bang for the Buck

Catalogs cost about $1 per piece, but they can generate an average of $4 in sales. In other words, spending $1,000 on catalog marketing sees $4,000 in sales. Want even more sales? Send more catalogs.

In other words, the cost for your direct mail marketing campaign is as high or as low as you can go. The more you can put into your catalog campaign, the higher your return will be. A good rule of thumb is to split your sends between current customers and potential leads. After all, the goal is to grow your business, right?

Integrate Marketing Channels

For the best possible results, you want to reach customers in all possible ways—and make it possible for them to reach you in various ways, too. For instance, a catalog should always include your website address and a phone number for phone orders. Your website should offer the opportunity to sign up for your physical catalog.

Creating an omnichannel experience, such as that provided by retail powerhouse Macy’s, means that you give all buyers the opportunity to view your marketing materials, ask you questions, and make a purchase, and all in the ways that make those buyers the most comfortable.

Why It Works

All of this is well and good, but we still haven’t touched on the real reason catalog marketing reaches buyers. The truth is that everyone wants something they can hold on to. That’s why book lovers still have hard copies of their favorites even when ebooks are available. It’s why you prefer to receive an invitation in the mail than a Facebook event invitation.

A print catalog shows you care—just like those real books and real invitations. You care about your products and your customers. People, customers, love that. If you want to see the power for yourself, contact us today about setting up your catalog campaign for your ecommerce store. We’re here to help you grow your business.