It’s no secret that running an eCommerce site is no easy task, as nearly every eCommerce entrepreneur will agree that the job is not for everyone.
One of the biggest hurdles many e-commerce entrepreneurs face is encouraging other domains to link back to a product page. When a company is first starting, it can become expensive sending out free products and paying influencers to do sponsored reviews.
In addition, natural links can go a long way due to the sheer fact that they are not sponsored. Because of this, it’s absolutely necessary that any successful e-commerce store build natural links around the internet but we the product pages in order to top search engine ranking results.
Unfortunately, link building has never been easy, and it does take a lot of perseverance and commitment to achieve. The best way eCommerce entrepreneurs can build their link database is by engaging more with their customers.
Studies show that one of the best ways eCommerce entrepreneurs can engage with their customers is through content marketing.
Content marketing can take a number of forms:
- Blog posts
- Social media sharing
The idea is to create content that holds the customer’s attention just long enough to get them interested in a brand or product. Customers are not visiting store websites to read a novel, but are there to find products that will fit their needs. It’s important to keep any content on the store page short, sweet, and to the point in order to keep the customers attention.
Content marketing doesn’t happen overnight, and does require some research and planning prior to attempting:
- Set content goals before setting out on your content marketing plan. Understand what you are looking to achieve with your plan, and be sure to write it down.
- Make a list of influencers in your field who may be interested in helping you with your content marketing plan. Think of bloggers or social media gurus who may have an interest in your product. you will want to consider collaborating with these influencers as part of your content marketing plan.
- Understand which customer you are marketing to. It’s important to develop a buyer persona so that you can more personally understand who your customer is, what they want, and what they need.
- Understand the buyer’s journey. Everybody goes through a thought process prior to making a purchase. They notice they are having a problem, or that something is missing from their life, and therefore begin to consider options that will fix it. They then determine to purchase a product that fits their needs, which is when they will look to your store to make that purchase.
- Create a contact calendar and stick to it. Decide how many blog posts you would like to have published each day or week, and commit yourself to posting every day at peak hours of leadership.
- Determine the networking which will be used to distribute your content. In order to succeed with content marketing, you will need to have an effective outreach program in place.
- Plan to repurpose old content that may be used for a similar purpose in the future.
- Be sure to know how to optimize your content, as all content should be fully optimized to perform at its best..
Once you understand the basics of a good content marketing plan, you can begin to start your journey.
Understand that not all visitors to your page will convert into buyers. Having a high conversion rate means that a high percentage of your page visitors will make a purchase prior to leaving the page. It’s important to have a high conversion rate, and if visitor rates are significantly higher than buyer rates, you may want to consider some marketing or product changes.
The main way to achieve a high conversion rate is to present yourself as the leading authority in your field. Your customer should believe that by purchasing from you, they are getting the very best product and shopping experience available, making it important that you would validate your company with authoritative content.
Some of the most reliable types of authoritative content used to increase in traffic and conversion rates include:
- Definitive or comprehensive guides on topics in the field.
- Guest blogging on a popular and authoritative site also in your field.
- List based content.
- Crowdsourced content.
- Any recognition or awards the company may have received.
- Comparisons of your product versus competing company’s product.
- Infographics related to your products or field.
- Reader contests.
Another popular category used to create the right authoritative contents is the DIY, or how-to category. How-to categories are extremely popular on the web, and are some of the most frequently searched topics through Google each day. Therefore, how-to guides are very popular among customers, particularly when they relate to a product you may be selling. This also gives assurance to the customer that they will know how to use your product when they get it, if they’ve already been able to witness how it works in real life.
In addition to how-to’s, buyer’s guides and product videos can also be used to deliver the “how-to” feel in a different, less saturated style.
If there’s one way to gain the trust of readers, it’s to include statistics with sources that can be backed up. Therefore, using case studies as part of a content marketing strategy can be extremely rewarding, and should be included in any content marketing plan.
Customer reviews and testimonials are another great way to gain the trust of your customer, as they will feel less at risk purchasing your product with other customers having attested to its quality.
Finally, successful content marketing should include excellent visuals that will please the eye of the reader. The reader is not there to read a wall of text, therefore the design element of all content is absolutely crucial to its success.
Some visual elements to consider include:
Once you’ve developed your content marketing plan, and you’ve decided which types of content you would like to create, it’s time to begin promoting and distributing the content you created.
Be sure to use all of your personal social media, email lists, blogs, and websites as the first step in sharing your content. Be sure that your content is optimized for sharing, and share it at peak times of the day and week.
Once you shared your content with your friends and family, it’s time to begin distributing it on other channels. This step of the process is potentially the hardest, as it requires the attention of influencers in your field in order to be successful.
The easiest way to get in touch with influencers is to first identify which will be most likely to work with you, and then begin building strong relationships with them once you’ve established content. Let them know that you look up to them, but treat them like a business partner, not a celebrity.
Share their content, and ask their advice when necessary. Once you’ve gained their trust, they will be far more likely to share your content with their audience, which is what you were trying to achieve.
Once you’ve used your social media accounts and have reached out to influencers, it may be time to look to page channels to continue your content marketing plan. If you feel that you can justify other channels of outreach, they are a good final step to reach an audience that may not have seen your content before.