A Complete Guide To Rebranding Your eCommerce Site

Gayane Tamrazyan
Rebranding Online Store

One day, any business owner is thinking over updating his or her business image, refreshing design, or adding more trendy elements in the website design. It’s a quite natural desire. Mission and values change over time, new features and capabilities appear, and you need to keep up to date to stand out of competition, stay memorable with clients, or simply make your business compliant to its current state (legal issues or product range). In this guide, we collected the best rebranding practices and strategies to help CS-Cart and Multi-Vendor stores rebrand with the least effort and to the best advantage.

What is rebranding?

Rebranding is a strategy that includes elaborating a new corporate image by creating a new name, symbol, logo, and related visual materials for promotion.

Why to rebrand? 

By rebranding you: 

  • Create a unique brand identity that differentiates you from others in the minds of customers, investors, competitors, and employees;
  • Breath life into your brand attracting attention.
  • Improve the old functionality (side effect). 

65% of people are visual learners. Everything visual about your brand is capable of bringing you more visitors and retaining the existing ones with the help of well-thought look-n-feel. 

If you are only starting a new business, you should think about the brand identity (visual representation of your brand and how people perceive your brand through them). But in the case, you’re a long time on the market, your brand identity needs to be changed over time to meet the new challenges.

When to rebrand?

  • Mission and values changed. Companies grow, so their brands should evolve together with the branding. Logos may become obsolete, not responding to your brand ever-changing values. Time is different, so your brand aesthetic may no longer match with your company’s values and products.
  • Expanding to new markets and locations. Do you plan to expand or enter a new market? Make sure your name responds to local values and norms.
  • Drawing a distinction between you and competition. Your brand identity does not differentiate you on the market from others, rebranding is must.
  • Overcoming poor reputation. Rebranding can improve your perception with customers.

The fact is that many companies, including the most successful like Uber, Unilever, Dunkin Donuts, rebrand. They do it to modernize, outstand from their competition, and even escape a lackluster reputation as in the case of Uber.

Additional incentives to rebrand:

  • Mergers and acquisitions;
  • Market repositioning;
  • PR crisis. 

When rebranding is not a good choice?

  • You are not ready for a complete revision of all visual assets. Changing the brand name or introducing a new logo, be ready to update accordingly all visual assets to fit the new brand and keep all design, marketing and website features consistent. If not, rebranding is not your choice.
  • Boredom. It is not a good reason to rebrand. Consistency is one reason customers have strong connections with a brand. So, if you decided to redesign, there should be a significant reason. 
  • Just for show. Rebranding is not a quick solution to demonstrating that the company is taking a new direction. Often, rebranding entails significant legal and organization changes.

Myths about rebranding

  • Rebranding is the designer’s job.

The thing is that rebranding involves designers’, developers’, and marketers’ jobs. Depending on the tone of voice and the way it is working for your eCommerce store, your audience perceive you differently. To ensure a coherent messaging of your brand, marketers should perform a research on the target audience. 

Is your messaging compliant with your buyer personae? If not, build one. If your customer profile has changed, you need to rebrand to target a new customer profile. By doing so, you find out the common language with your customers to use it on your website, blog, across social platforms, and marketing messages.

Another significant aspect of rebranding is the strapline: memorable slogans resonating with customers. Think about a message you want to convey to your audience and create your slogan based on that.

  • Rebranding or changing the brand identity is all about changing the brand name and logo.

No, it does not. Although a successful brand implies having a strong and unique name and logo in place, it is the experience of your customers and potential buyers with your website interface also. Depending on all the UX/UI elements like buttons and their arrangement across the store, fonts and colors, you can inspire high trust and credibility with your prospects and customers.

  • Rebranding is about visual elements, not functionality.

Not always. Rebranding may include new features. Just in case, consider adding the following to enrich your online brand identity:

  1. 3D animation for product images
  2. Price configurator to manufacture configurable, multi-option products that aim to enhance their sales productivity; 
  3. Chatbot.

When you only launch your business or run an old-fashioned store, you may find that your brand identity is undermining your efforts to grow. If so, you need to rebrand with new functionality.

Rebranding checklist

Now, you definitely know that rebranding is what you need to evolve and grow. Here is a quick list for you to follow while rebranding:

  1. Begin with understanding your mission, vision, and values.
  2. Draw a complete rebranding strategy working for your brand.
  3. Include your audience, market, and your competition into rebranding strategy.
  4. Include other departments to assess intermediate and final results and get their feedback.
  5. Rename your brand (optional).
  6. Recreate your brand identity with the new design.
  7. Announce rebranding and tell the reasons why you have done it to a wide audience (customers, employees, followers).

How to rebrand with renaming?

Did you know that Google’s first name was Backrub? Amoco started as Standard. Accenture started with the name Andersen Consulting. While it is not recommended to change a business name just because of the mood, sometimes it’s in your business’s interest to take the plunge. 

Below are some reasons when it is the right time to rename while rebranding:

  • Trademark: when a company name coincides with or is very similar to another brand name. 
  • Generic name: a common name does not help you to differentiate from competitors. Without a unique name, you’ll always be confused with someone else. Besides, it’s not good for SEO. There are thousands of ‘Consulting Services’ firms. Even if you’re best, you won’t be remembered by clients and recognized by search engines. Your business should be easy found on the Web.
  • Outgrown specifics: your brand evolved and the name does not reflect what your business does, product, and values. 

Read more about choosing the right name for your business…

While renaming, ask yourself the following issues:

  • What does your business do?
  • How is it different from competitors?
  • How do you describe your business as a person? (playful, aggressive, strong)
  • How do you define your unique value proposition?

Here’s a checklist to ensure your new name allows you to legally operate (U.S.):

  • Check if the appropriate domain name is available. 
  • Check the new name with the Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) on USPTO.
  • Register the updated name in your state and the Federal Trademark Commission.
  • Update all legal documents accordingly.
  • Register as a Doing Business As (DBA) if required. 
  • Change your business name with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
  • Create a new business slogan and tagline to reflect the new name.

What to pay attention to while changing design:

  • Clean design: a subtle design helps decrease bounce rate. 
  • Call-to-action buttons: they convert better when placed where appropriate in adequate quantities.
  • Micro UX/transitions: subtle animations encourage the customer to navigate more effectively.
  • Tiled navigation: users perceive product images better with a tiled design.
  • Fonts and colors: color changes or product images with a text that appears after the user scrolls over the image improve conversion.
  • Device friendliness: your store should be responsive across any device.

Read the case how we redesigned the Malishok store and increased conversions…

A Complete Guide To Rebranding Your eCommerce Site
Our client: Malishok store

Things to consider in redesign

Drafting a style guide

Brand guidelines also known as a style guide are a set of rules that all employees in your company should follow whenever publishing or promoting any brand-related content on any platform. This document answers the following questions:

  • What font does your logo use?
  • What colors are approved to present your brand?
  • If an image is required for branding purposes, what tone and feel should it follow?
  • How do you write? Should you use ‘eCommerce’, or ‘e-commerce’, for example?

The document should be detailed to the maximum to keep all small things consistent. Consistency in brand design influences on how good your brand is recognized by customers. 

Consistency relates to logo design also. Designing a logo you need to include information about the size, placement, negative space around, and the appropriate usage places. A good logo should be:

  • recognizable;
  • versatile;
  • timeless.

Tip: CS-Cart users should not forget about placing their unique favicon, and not the default one.

A Complete Guide To Rebranding Your eCommerce Site
Common Mistake with Standard Favicon

Color palette

The color palette specifies what main and additional colors are permitted, where to use certain, and what colors are avoided. Indicate color with values like RGB, CMYK to remove uncertainty. You can also describe the purpose of using each color like in example below:

Main color

Color DescriptionPurpose
#D01217LavaTo highlight the most important elements
#788088Slate GreyFor top-level heading text and ancillary elements

Additional colors

#172028Black PearlFor paragraph level text
#0B1337Midnight ExpressFor background and contrast elements
#545D8DGovernor BayFor background and auxiliary elements

Typography

Typography is about fonts you use in headers, quotes, any fine print. You will need to define the typefaces, point sizes, line lengths, line-spacing, and letter-spacing to ensure legible, readable and appealing look of your store/marketplace.

It may look as follows in your style guide:

Main font – Montserrat:

  • H1 – Bold, 70pt
  • H2 – Bold, 48pt
  • H3 – Bold, 20pt

Additional font – Roboto:

  • Hx – Bold, 20pt
  • Subtitle H1 – Medium, 24pt
  • Text – Regular, 16pt

Images

Define what is allowed in your images, and where to get. You also can put instructions on what should be shown in images. Some companies avoid text on images in order not to divert the focus of the reader. Your company might avoid people on images. Clarify all the image rules for every distribution channel you have: marketing printouts, emails, social media, website. 

Read how to adjust images in CS-Cart

Things to consider in marketing

Email design

Most brand owners would like to have their email addresses come from their business domain. The reason is that it helps to set proper expectations and adds credibility to your brand. A welcome email is also important as it is the first exchange between you and a new customer.

The email design and its content set a place to start future communications with your audience to share news, discounts, or helpful pieces of advice (product or gift guides, for example).

Tone of voice

The way you talk with your customers defines your brand’s personality and can influence how your customers communicate with you. It can be: 

  • Conversational;
  • Conservative;
  • Casual;
  • Dry; 
  • Cheerful.

When you understand who your audience is, it’s easier to determine the tone of voice your company follows. Once determined, make it compliant across marketing and sales channels. Your employees should be aware how to communicate with your clients.

Personality

Brand personality may include 3 or 5 key characteristics (such as adventurous, rebellious, or empowering).

If you are struggling with defining your brand personality, try to answer the following issues:

  • How do you define your brand’s main purpose and function?
  • What is the benefit to people in your company?
  • How do people currently perceive your brand?
  • Can you define the most important customer experience with your business?
  • What associations your brand should evoke with people?

Answering these questions, you’ll form the core of your brand that you will need to further translate in all of your future branding decisions. 

Product packaging and package graphics

If you produce physical products, ensure our product packaging reflects your brand.

A good product packaging for your product and package graphics design including graphics and content on the product packaging is crucial to your company’s success.

Read more how to improve your packaging

Things to consider in website development

Business website

Your business website is often the first touch point a visitor has with your company.

A corporate website inspires credibility and trust. A good design makes web surfers stay on your page. If your website is organized well in terms of UX/UI, fonts, colors, product descriptions, and images, you have greater chances to influence buying decisions in your favor. 

While redesigning your website, try to answer the following issues: 

  • What information do you want to add to the homepage? From which channels do users come to your site? How will users explore your site mainly: search products in the catalog, use a search bar on the homepage/ a site map and by geolocation?
  • Do you need a detailed filter system in the catalog?
  • What are good examples of a website you want to repeat?
  • Bad examples?

With these questions answered and the guidelines, you can build your rebranding strategy, improve UX/UI, add more converting features. And if you need assistance, our website is a good example of rebranding. You can trust our experience in design.

CS-Cart add-ons to assist in rebranding:

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