Please raise your hand if you’ve ever thought of starting your venture – an e-commerce store but have shied away from taking the plunge. The reasons could be many, and the questions could be DAUNTING- the biggest one – how do we let people know we EXIST, how do we drive traffic to our store, how do we create a market for our self and how do we pull people to our site!!
You finally take the plunge, shortlist your product line, develop a state of the art, user-friendly website, and setup your first Ecommerce store. Now what!! You are all ready for action and waiting for your first sale, the second sale and the third and the fourth one. But ALAS all this seems elusive as you hardly get any visitors on your store. People barely know you exist and the virtual footfalls to your store are negligible. Moreover, how do you differentiate yourself from hundreds and thousands of sites selling similar products? It’s scary enough creating a store and not have anyone know about it, and further having to compete with competitors!! WHAT DO YOU DO??
Well, here’s the good news, just relax and together let’s create a strategy which will help more and more people visit your website and drive sales. With proven ways and practical tips at your disposal, you could easily create engaging conversations with your target audience and get them to visit your site.
I have listed down a few techniques which if used strategically will yield great results for you. Ready? Let’s dive in!!
1) Create content rich blogs which add value to your customer
“Consumers may not have 30 seconds for an Ad Spot , but they do have 30 minutes for a Great Story and a Great Experience!!”
Today content is KING and has become the new form of search-engine marketing. Companies are creating highly targeted and quality content to receive the results they desire. One of the tricks to powerful content marketing is customer advocacy. Let your customers share their experiences and stories. Create a marketing strategy involving your customers. Include them in your conversations with the target audience. Make them the protagonist and let them tell others why they choose your brand over others and what your brand means to them. Imagine the meaningful and engaging content you would create while putting your customer center stage, and don’t forget the genuinity associated with it!!
2) Get User Reviews
Online reviews left by your existing customers add tremendous credibility for your E-commerce store Positive user reviews majorly impact the purchase and buying decision of your customers. Most of the websites have this facility today, and it is important that this is utilized well as it can be a major trigger in driving new sales. Also, user reviews keep your static pages active and search engines loves pages where content in continuously updated. User reviews give your product pages higher chances of ranking as well as more social engagement.
3) Visibility is the key
It is essential your e-commerce site is constantly visible on social networks and is regularly updated with relevant content. Create and maintain your brand positioning to survive the online world. Be presence wherever possible- Out of sight is out of mind!!..Some tips on how this can be done:
a) Upload content for your followers regularly. These could be special offers, news about your product line, pictures, information related to your business, and anything which you hope will be of value to your followers. For this, you will need to know your target audience well and be aware of their preferences and lifestyle. Publishing the right content will improve your chances of having your post shared and seen by more people, directly impacting the visibility of your site, its amount of followers and potential buyers.
TIP: Have you heard of the site Upworthy? Visit this website to take ideas and content ready to be put in your communities. Upworthy articles are in everyone’s Facebook feeds. Upworthy provides content that targets emotions and convictions, two of the most engaging aspects which bring about involvement in social networks. With over 10.4 million visits it ‘s been qualified and acknowledged as one of the best websites designed for this purpose. See it and use ideas from here to your advantage
b) Analyze your competition: Keep researching and checking what your competitors are up to, what is it that they upload, analyze how many posts they publish every day, how many special offers they upload and what kind and how they engage their audience
4) Use Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest to the fullest
Instagram is fast becoming one of the most effective marketing channels for E-commerce merchants. It gives brands much higher engagement than any other social platform. It’s also an excellent way to drive traffic to your store and create awareness .TIP: Be smart and figure out a way to target influencers on Instagram. Offer them samples of your products and ask them to talk about them to their followers
Engage with people proactively on Twitter. Create and follow a systematic tweeting strategy. TIP: Create a buzz before you launch something new by engaging with people who write about your type of offerings. This will create a lot of interest in your products, and when you finally launch your product you would have people waiting for it
Use Facebook effectively, let your family and friends share your online store to their network. Create targeted ads on Facebook and run contests to engage with your target audience actively.
Pin it up with Pinterest. Use pins that contain extra information right inside the pin (Rich Pins) . Let your customers benefit from Product Pins that include real-time pricing and stock availability. Rich Pins improve CTR and discoverability of pins. Another great advantage of Rich Pins is price notifications. If you run discounts on products, customers who repinned that product image will receive an email from Pinterest notifying them of the price drop and prompting them to buy and phew you might have people queuing up to your store to avail the discounts
5) Social Media Campaigns: Associate your brand with a cause relevant to your target audience and create social media campaigns with a purpose. Social media campaigns are an excellent way to drive brand awareness and engage with their customers. Make customers your focal point. Show your customers you care about them.
TIP: Build a community that actively engages with your content- your posts, contests, events and this increases the likelihood of your blog posts and product pages ranking higher within the Google search engine – thus driving more traffic.
6) Leverage Email marketing: Collect email addresses of visitors visiting your site by offering them something of value. Provide valuable content, tips, and tricks, newsletters, etc. If you fail to collect email addresses, then you are missing out on a HUGE sales opportunity.
7) Leverage forums effectively: If used strategically, forums can be an excellent way to steer people to your content pages. The emphasis here should not be just your E-commerce store links on the forum and wait for people to click and reach your store. Instead, focus on posts which would be of interest to individuals who are a part of the forum and visit it regularly. This will help you to establish credibility and build a relationship with your target audience and this in future will eventually lead to sales.TIP : Type forum:[your topic] into Google search to find forums in your niche
8) Reach out to bloggers: This is a great way of reaching out to a wider audience. Find out well-known bloggers who write on trends etc in your niche Each of these bloggers has a large following, and they may be interested in review your products. TIP: To make it attractive for bloggers you can offer them an affiliate fee.
Well , if you follow a well thought of strategy you definitely are on the winning side, Be smart, persistent and patient.Your efforts will pay off.
Will be back with more soon…
About the author
Pradeep is an entrepreneur and an E-commerce enthusiast. He is a Magento developer and specializes in creating Magento plugins. An avid follower of E-commerce technologies, he enjoys writing about various aspects of E-commerce. He can be reached on: firstname.lastname@example.org