More great stuff from Rand Marketing…this time they share some of the most important strategies you can use to grow your eCommerce business.
You started an eCommerce business to generate revenue–to grow. You need to develop a strategy, incorporating industry best practice, to help your business grow. Ideally, it’s best to have a marketing strategy in place before you launch your website, in order to “hit the ground running”, but it’s never too late to devise a plan to attract shoppers to your storefront.
In this post we’ll go over the levers you can pull–the things you can do to grow your eCommerce business. While this list isn’t exhaustive, these are the major opportunities that you should look at first to drive targeted traffic to your website.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization (also called SEO) is the practice of refining your website’s content so that it is found by as much of your target audience as possible through search engines like Google. SEO is a discipline all its own, but anyone can get the basics down. Even fundamental SEO best practices can produce major gains for eCommerce sites.
Google and other search engines use complex algorithms to rank websites for various keyword phrases. Earning SEO rankings takes hard work and patience, but is a great way to keep people who are actively searching for the goods that you sell finding your online store.
Recommended Resource: The Beginner’s Guide to SEO from Moz
Pay Per Click Marketing (PPC)
Pay per click marketing allows you to use advertisements, for which you pay for each click, to bring traffic to your site. It’s a great strategy to use, especially early in your business, before you’re able to build up enough site credibility to rank well in search engines. The drawback, of course, is that this traffic is not free.
There are many examples of PPC marketing. For instance, Google Adwords and Bing Ads allow you to run Paid ads in search engines. You can leverage the power of systems like Google Shopping, and show banner ads on relevant blogs and new sites, and even ads on Youtube videos. You can also run re-marketing ads, showing banners and other ads to shoppers who left your website without making an immediate purchase.
Recommended Resource: PPC University from Wordstream
Social Media Marketing (SMM)
Social media marketing offers you an even larger opportunity to target very specific customers. In many cases, social media marketing involves the customer opting in to your messaging or activity. Building a social media following means building an army of loyal brand advocates.
Social networks like Facebook allow for advertising that’s highly targeted by demographics and interests. Additionally, shoppers can be attracted to your brand by your strong social media presence and engagement. Whether running a contest on Facebook, or attracting shoppers through images on Pinterest, social media can play an active role by painting a picture of a strong, trustworthy brand, and driving interest in your E-commerce store.
Recommended Resource: Scott Stratten’s UnMarketing Blog
Shoppers are often looking for more than just a product online. In some cases, they’re researching to find the right product. In others, they’re trying to find a solution to a problem. By providing answers, advice, and guidance, you can attract more consumers, and help them associate with your brand as the experts in your field.
Content marketing usually takes the form of blogging, but isn’t limited to that. You can create YouTube videos, Slideshare presentations, a podcast, and many other types of media. The goal is to build a brand and an audience by providing value, instead of advertising.
(Google really likes this kind of thing. Effective content marketing can boost your SEO performance.)
Recommended Resource: Content Marketing Institute
There are many ways to increase engagement amongst your historical customers and follows. Sending them an occasional e-mail letting them know about new products, sales, and other happenings within your organization is a great way to stay top-of-mind. With the right tools and expertise, these e-mails can be segmented based upon the shopping habits of your customers, and can be leveraged to help follow up with customers who visited your site, and left with items still in their shopping cart.
Recommended Resource: Mailchimp’s Email Marketing Field Guide
There are content publishers who are always looking for new eCommerce websites to drive traffic to. In return, they ask for a referral commission on any sales generated. Publishers are given unique tracking codes, and then publish banners and links to your website through blog posts, e-mail newsletters, banner ads, social media posts, and other mediums to drive shoppers to your store in hopes of earning commissions.
Recommended Resource: Affilorama’s Free Training
What To Do Next
Check out Robert’s other posts, here on Multichannel Insights, and if you’re in the market for an eCommerce implementation, Rand Marketing should be your first choice.