You’ve got your online store up and running, and now it’s time to start driving web traffic to your store. Granted, it isn’t as easy as someone just walking past your more traditional retail store, but once you’ve got the basics down and people are visiting your web store, it’s relatively easy to build from there. Here are some great tips on how to drive traffic to your online store.
Creating a Digital Marketing Plan
A digital marketing plan is essential when building your online store. While the internet allows you to target a wider audience than a traditional physical shopfront does, you don’t want to be spending time or money targeting an audience that doesn’t want your product. Now is the time to build a digital marketing plan to help you reach the right customers.
What do you need to consider when building your marketing plan?
Customer personas – Who is your ideal customer? How are you going to find out more about your ideal customer?
What are your goals? – Do you want to increase revenue or traffic to your website? What about increasing the leads on your email marketing list? Your goals should lead to an increase in overall revenue.
Digital marketing channels – What digital marketing channels do you already have available to you and what channels would assist you in meeting your goals?
Content – What kind of content are you going to put out there to assist you in meeting your goals? Do you need to do a blog content calendar or a social media content calendar to ensure you are putting out consistent, high-quality information?
Hubspot offers some good clear information on building your digital marketing strategy and plan.
Social Media Marketing Basics
If you’ve only ever used Facebook for personal use, now is the time to start looking into what social media channels you can use to help promote your online store. Unfortunately, it isn’t as easy as just promoting your products. To make the most out of social media marketing, you need to be creating interesting content that is relevant to your target market. This may include posting an image on Facebook or Instagram or posting a link to your latest blog post on Twitter. By working out what your potential customers are interested in, you can market relevant information to them.
One of the best ways to gain interest on social media is through current or potential customers sharing your posts with their family and friends – they will be doing your work for you. This is why it is important to know what is of interest to your customers; the more interesting the content, the more likely they are to share.
There are four main social media platforms – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. The platform you use will be heavily dependent on your business, the product or service you are trying to sell and where your customers are most likely to be. Big Commerce has a great little run down on the social media platforms and how to utilise them.
What is SEO and How Can it Help Me?
SEO, or search engine optimisation, can be a massive minefield of information but there are plenty of ways it can be useful for an online store. It requires effort upfront, but if done effectively, it keeps working for you with little maintenance.
SEO is essentially a way to optimise your website or online store using specific keywords that allow you to rank higher in search results on search engines like Google. This can be done by using specific keywords in your product descriptions, by utilising blogs around specific questions people are asking about your product, using great images (and describing them), and by linking both to more information or having people link to your website.
So why is it important to get organic listings high up on the search engines? The fact is, most people will just input a search query and click on the first couple of website links they see. The better your SEO, the more likely potential customers will be clicking through to your store.
Put in the effort in doing your research around the right keywords to use, build the right content on your online store or website, and monitor your results. You may need to try some different keywords before you start getting results, but once you have them, you are likely to see an increase in traffic to your website and revenue through your business.
5 Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Online Store
Once you’ve got your marketing plan sorted out and understand the basics of social media marketing and SEO, it’s time to look into ways to drive traffic to your store. We’ve outlined five of the most popular ways to generate traffic, in turn, generating sales.
1. Google Adwords
If you’re looking for a fast way to drive traffic to your online store, Google Adwords is one of the quickest options; and it’s available to everyone, even if you are on a limited budget. Google Adwords is a pay-per-click system, so when someone clicks on your advertisement or views a video you’ve created, you will need to pay. How to take advantage of this method?
- Advertise your online store on Google’s search results
- Display text or banner advertisements on websites or in apps that your customers are likely to use
Make sure you set your pay-per-click budget – you don’t want to be spending more than you have planned for.
2. Producing Premium Content
You’ve probably heard it said before, content is king when it comes to driving traffic to your online store or website. Potential customers are looking for content that is valuable and enjoyable – good content will get your customers returning to read about what is new, what they can do with your products or just general information surrounding what you sell.
For example, you sell essential oils. You could blog on how to use particular oils, what they are known to help, how best to use them, what you can mix them with and so on. You could also publish product reviews, news pieces, and generally informative articles that people may find interesting and helpful.
Remember this marketing mantra when considering what to publish “sell the problem you solve, not the product”.
3. Utilise SEO
We’ve spoken about SEO at the beginning of this blog and now it’s time to put it into action to help your content get found. Focus on the basics and let the results flow in – by tracking what traffic you are getting, where they are coming from and you’ll discover what keywords are working for you and what isn’t. Some basic tips to follow include;
- Add keywords related to your online store in your blog content
- Include external links to expert information or more extensive information
- Create internal links to help Google index your entire site
- Include keywords on all product descriptions and images
- Write detailed meta descriptions
- Make sure your website is optimised to perform at the best speed
- Approach bloggers about guest blogging and pointing back to your online store.
You don’t need to do all of these – even a few will help increase your content ranking and drive traffic to your online store.
4. Email Marketing
Do you have a list of current, past and potential customers who’d love to hear more about what new products you have in stock or what sales you are having? When you have an online store, you need to focus on your past and current customers, as well as future customers and one of the best ways to do that, is via email marketing. Set up campaigns to target particular customers, create a personalised marketing campaign for individual customers or even to help customers finalise their order.
Email marketing is a great way to keep in touch and remind your customers that you do exist – just don’t go overboard and shower them with a daily email – once a week or so may well be enough.
5. Social Media
Social media holds a huge source of power to drive traffic to your website. From advertising through to running your own social media pages (as outlined at the beginning of this blog), there is much potential in social media for online businesses. Knowing how to utilise your chosen platform is essential, and topics such as the type of posts and the frequency should be covered in your digital marketing plan.
Do you need help with driving traffic to your online store? Contact the team at Thrive Advice for help on getting your digital marketing up to scratch, as well as driving traffic to your store. Our aim is to help you grow into a profitable and successful online retailer.