When it comes to eCommerce websites, marketing is absolutely vital. Unlike traditional brick-and-mortar stores, there’s no such thing as “foot traffic” where potential customers see and become interested in your store by walking or driving past it. The internet is vast, and your website can get lost in the void if you don’t make your mark and get the word out that you exist.
Thankfully, the internet offers a wide variety of ways to get your online store in front of the eyes of potential customers. Instead of polishing your street-side storefront, you’re optimizing your site to show up on search engines. Instead of renting out billboards on the highway, you’re buying ads on Facebook. Times have changed, so if you want your store’s profits to go in an upward direction, you’ll have to adopt some new ideas for marketing your eCommerce website.
By far, content marketing is one of the most underrated ways to gain traffic on your eCommerce website. Content marketing can refer to several things, such as blog posts, articles, videos, etc. It all boils down to the same basic principle: by creating content that may be relevant to your potential customers, you’ll increase the amount of people interested in your company and what it has to say. Not to mention, written content on your sit e is the best place to host keywords that can help you get ranked on search engines.
There’s a few different types of content that are proven to convert well among potential customers:
Writing a blog post about either your products or your industry is a great way to generate leads to your site. The blog posts that generate the most leads are the type that rank certain products or objects, such as “top 10,” “best of,” or “review” blogs. You can also create helpful instructional blog posts, which help paint your company as a credible and valuable resource in your industry.
News articles about current events that are happening within your online store’s industry are a great way to generate leads and encourage engagement on your site. If customers begin to see your content as more than just selling them something, instead seeing you as a helpful news source within your given industry as well, they will be more drawn to your content and will share it organically.
Including video on your site’s product pages is another good way of gaining traffic and improving your search engine rankings. You can use videos to connect with your customers, tell a story that contributes to building your brand, or help customers with frequently asked questions. If your videos’ tags are optimized, then they’ll show up on search engines and will be introduced to a whole new audience.
While content marketing is an important tool, it’s part of a much larger piece of the online marketing puzzle: search engine optimization, or SEO. If you want your online store to rank high on Google’s search results when people look up keywords related to your products, then utilizing SEO is a necessity. By optimizing your site for SEO, you’re driving targeted traffic for free to your site.
If you’re just getting started in SEO, here’s the two most important ways to optimize your site and boost your ranking:
If you want to get your site to show up when someone types in a term related to your products or industry, it’s necessary to optimize your keywords. To do this, do some research into what keywords you’d like to take on and are less competitive. Then, include your chosen keywords in various forms organically throughout the content of your site. However, don’t get too carried away: keyword stuffing is a punishable offense when it comes to Google’s ranking algorithm.
A fundamental part of SEO, link building refers to getting links from other websites to your own site to increase your traffic and authority. Better link building leads to better search result ranking, so it’s important to get this right. When you start link building, one of the main things to keep in mind is that your backlinks should be high in quality and relevancy. If you’re linking to, or being linked by, a site with low page authority or domain authority, that can hurt your search engine ranking.
In order to connect with your audience on social media, your brand needs to be telling a story rather than pushing a product. Potential customers don’t connect and engage with in-your-face ads telling them to buy your product. Instead, they engage with human stories that they can relate to and connect with, which you can make relevant to your brand. If audiences positively associate your brand and its products with a narrative that they connect with, you’ll begin establishing brand trust within them.
When it comes to social media, here’s some of our top tips on how to get the most out of it:
- Engage with your customers. Social media users want to feel like they’re being listened to, so respond to them when they ask questions or talk about your brand. By showing that you’re a helpful entity, and not just looking for sales, you’ll build trust among users.
- Create shareable content. The main aspect of social media is sharing content with your friends, family, and followers. If you create content that’s interesting and prime for sharing, users will spread your posts across all channels, increasing visibility. Making every post about your products is detrimental, because it makes users feel that you’re just a cold corporation that’s only trying to make a quick buck off them.
- Keep an eye on what’s trending (and relevant). Most, if not all, social media platforms have a feature that shows what topics are trending at any given time. By taking advantage of these trending topics, your brand will gain visibility among those who are browsing any posts relating to that topic. However, make sure it’s relevant to your industry. If you’re a fashion and apparel business, it’ll probably seem out of place if you make a post about National Cheese Day or controversial foreign policy.
While organic advertising is great, it can only get you so far. That’s where paid advertising comes in. Most search engines and social media sites offer pricing plans for you to get your ad shown to specific target markets, assuring that your products will be seen by exactly who you want to see them.
With Google Shopping, you can add your product inventory directly onto Google’s own shopping page. The way it works is simple: you bid a specific amount of money to have your product’s ads shown on Google Shopping, and the highest bid ad gets to appear on Google’s search. However, these differ from Google’s traditional text based ads because they have a lower cost-per-click and include more information about your product, such as photos and star ratings. Selling on Google is made easy with the multitude of free tools they provide at your disposal.
Social media giant Facebook makes a large chunk of its money from companies buying ads on their site, so naturally they have a sophisticated and varied advertisement platform. The best Facebook ads that you should pay attention to as an eCommerce seller are testimonials, dynamic product ads, and exclusive offers.
- Testimonials serve as social proof to the targeted user so that they can both trust your brand and engage with your content.
- Dynamic product ads display your entire product catalog as a carousel on Facebook, showcasing multiple products simultaneously. These ads also have the added benefit of retargeting, which is targeting ads towards users who have visited your site before.
- Exclusive offer ads work great on Facebook because, not only do they benefit from the enticing exclusivity of the discount, they offer a built in “shop now” button so the user can be converted effortlessly.
Some believe that email is a thing of the past, and that companies should stop wasting their time on an obsolete form of communication for marketing. However, the numbers show otherwise: 59% of marketers say it’s the top ROI-generating marketing method for their organizations. Email marketing still has a very high conversion rate, so forgetting about it can be a huge missed opportunity when marketing your online store. Here’s a few ways that you can get the most out of your email marketing campaigns:
- Build your email list. Email marketing is a great way to boost conversions, but only if you have a great list of email addresses to send promotions to. Be sure to keep your email list long, accurate, and on-track with your targeting.
- Craft creative drip campaigns. In email marketing, a drip campaign refers to a set of emails that automatically sends when triggered by particular instances, such as a new sign-up, a new purchase, specified periods of time, etc. Drip campaigns can drive sales and boost engagement when you target customers at just the right time.
- Automate abandoned cart emails. When a customer adds products to their cart, but doesn’t finish the checkout process, that’s considered an abandoned cart. One of the best ways to save that conversion is by sending out automated cart abandonment emails, which remind your customer that they didn’t check out. Often, these emails will include an incentive to finalize the sale, such as a discount code.
Make it Work in Unison
While all of these eCommerce marketing ideas work great in their own right, you’ll achieve the best results when they all can work together. By combining multiple online marketing tactics in the same sales funnel, your advertising in one channel will contribute to another channel and boost overall engagement and conversion.
There are a variety of ways that you can combine efforts across marketing channels to garner impressive results. For example, content marketing can serve well as an SEO rank boosting tactic, but can also be great for content to use in email marketing. Another example would be paid advertising on Google Shopping doing wonders for your SEO ranking through the residual keywords you need to qualify for the ad service.
Facebook Pixel is also a great example because, using this analytics tool, you can measure the effectiveness of your Facebook ads by tracking what visitors do on your site after they click the ad. This combines the power of social media, paid advertising, and content marketing to better understand how your marketing strategies are working.
Marketing for your eCommerce business can be extremely effective for increasing visibility and conversion rates if you do it right. If you take advantage of content marketing, SEO, social media marketing, paid advertising, and email marketing, your revenue has the ability to skyrocket. Keep your marketing strategy optimized and relevant and use all the tools that are at your disposal to get the digital word out that your business is something worth clicking on in 2019.