Were you aware that more than 70 percent of all businesses actively invest in content marketing? This should not come as a great surprise when we take into account the breadth of the online community. However, it is also important to mention that the e-commerce landscape has become more competitive than ever before.
This is why specific approaches to online marketing may no longer be appropriate while others could be outdated entirely. Let us, therefore, take a look at nine professional suggestions if you have been keen to learn what the not-so-distant future has in store.
1. Leverage the Reach of Social Media Platforms
Billions of users access portals such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram on a daily basis. This is why any e-commerce venture must take full advantage of social media marketing. Here are some of the benefits associated with these organic and user-friendly platforms:
- The majority are absolutely free to use.
- Businesses can communicate with followers within a real-time scenario.
- It is simple to advertise promotions and similar ongoing sales.
- Marketing specialists can obtain much-needed customer feedback.
Of course, having a plan in place is just as important. Consider which platform is associated with your target audience. Create engaging posts and when possible, share user-generated content. These are some of how you can resonate with the end-user.
2. Create Targeted Email Lists
Email is still one of the most effective ways to connect with your audience. This is why most marketing specialists spend a significant amount of time collating details and creating lists for future contact. However, keep in mind that user consent will often be required in order to send them specific details. Pop-up surveys and forms used to collect basic details can all represent excellent tools to consider.
Another takeaway point involves the “freshness” of the email lists in question. Let us remember that customers will opt out of offers from time to time. Their details should be immediately removed so that only engaged users are being sent information. In the event that mass email campaigns are in order, it is wise to use a third-party content management system so that superior levels of oversight can be enjoyed.
3. The Power of (Technical) SEO Optimisation
Anyone who has owned an e-commerce business for even a moderate amount of time is already aware of the importance of SEO (search engine optimization). Here are some SEO suggestions in regard to the architecture of the website itself:
- Ensure that no coding issues are present.
- Optimize all graphics and images so that they load quickly.
- Check to make certain that the site will display properly on mobile devices.
- Delete any bloatware that may cause sluggish page load speeds.
Please note that these recommendations only reflect the rather technical side of SEO. We also need to address organic concerns. This brings us to the fourth online marketing strategy.
4. keyword-focused SEO Practices
Make it a point to research standard and long-tail keywords with the help of free online tools such as Google Analytics. These are crucial, as they will direct visitors to what it is that you have to offer when a search is performed. Using the appropriate keywords will likewise enable your e-commerce site to rank higher within major SERPs (search engine results pages).
Let us also highlight the fact that local SEO is becoming even more important thanks to updated search engine algorithms. Discovering specific words which target a local audience is an excellent way to narrow down your online marketing efforts. Perhaps more relevant involves how local SEO will enable you to determine the overall efficacy of an ongoing campaign. We can equate this approach to the use of a scalpel as opposed to the “broadsword” nature of more traditional SEO practices.
5. Appreciate the Changing Nature of Online Content Marketing
Content marketing is not only associated with closing deals and increasing engagement rates. On the contrary, it involves many more factors and some e-commerce specialists tend to gloss over this decidedly important topic.
One of the primary goals of content marketing is to firmly establish interest in what it is that you actually have to offer. Therefore, there are several metrics that need to be clarified before attempting to formulate a successful campaign. Some examples include (but may not be limited to):
- What type of audience are you hoping to target?
- What are their spending habits?
- Which products have proven themselves to be the most popular in the past?
- Have certain posts attracted more interest than others?We can now see that content marketing should represent a long-term process as opposed to a one-off effort. Furthermore, the focus of these very same campaigns is likely to change as your e-commerce business continues to evolve.
A final point needs to be made here. Content marketing must make the most out of the countless online tools at your disposal. We are not only referring to written material in this sense (more on this in the following section). Other media can play a pivotal role. Images, videos, infographics, blog posts, and customer feedback forms can all reshape your strategies in accordance with the desires of the target audience in question.
6. Write Content for the User as Opposed to the Search Engine
One common (and entirely avoidable) mistake involves the notion that material should be created to gain exposure and increase rankings within a search engine. Although this is an ancillary benefit of content marketing, it is not the primary goal. The intention should always be to resonate with the end-user. Written material can work wonders if curated in the proper manner.
Content should be personalized to the point where the average reader is able to gain valuable knowledge. Furthermore, practices such as keyword stuffing and adding “fluff” to increase the overall length are both sure-fire ways to lose the interest of the visitor in question. Write text for humans as opposed to search engines. After all, they are the ones who will eventually take further action.
A final suggestion here involves the use of re-purposing old content. More than 50 percent of all businesses employ this method from time to time. This primarily results from the fact that some posts will always be more popular than others. Why not leverage this power by changing the content slightly while still retaining the main gist of the piece?
7. Collaborate with Well-Known Brands and Online Influencers
Word of mouth within the e-commerce community will go a long way in this day and age. Simply stated, customers are more interested in what others have had to say about their experiences as opposed to being bombarded with generic advertisements. Embracing this approach will provide your firm with a sense of transparency; helping to build trust and to increase conversion rates. Here are some strategies to consider:
- Make it a point to use influencer marketing to boost the “clout” of your firm.
- Encourage social media users to share your posts on other pages.
- Promote similar brands within your content, as the benefits of reciprocity should never be overlooked.
The main takeaway point here is that these approaches will provide your e-commerce venture with an authoritative edge that might not have been possible otherwise. They are also valuable ways to partner with more well-known e-commerce entities if your business does not currently possess the necessary virtual “clout”.
8. Consider the Google Shopping Platform
This is a lesser-known suggestion due to the fact that Google Shopping is a rather new system. As you might have already guessed, the main intention of Google Shopping is to allow users to find the products and services that they have been looking for. In some ways, it is thought that Google Shopping may be a viable alternative to other portals such as Amazon and eBay. There are also several unique benefits to this approach including:
- The ability to procure more qualified inbound traffic.
- A more streamlined user experience (UX) can lead to higher conversion rates.
- Products can be grouped together in accordance with your sales goals.
- A Google Shopping listing can help to boost SERP rankings.
Of course, there is nothing wrong with using the Google Shopping platform in synergy with other e-commerce sales systems. If anything, you will be adding another string to the proverbial bow.
9. Embed How-To Guides Within Your Current Content Marketing Portfolio
We have already stated that useful content will often make the difference between a successful campaign and a failed venture. However, this notion should be taken one step further. Some of the most successful types of e-commerce content are intended to solve a specific problem. This will normally be based on what it is that you happen to be promoting. Here are three examples of how-to articles:
- Five steps to enjoying a thicker head of hair in no time at all.
- What to look for in a quality smartphone case.
- How to pack when moving between two different locations.
Indeed, it has been found that more than one-third of all content marketing specialists consider how-to articles to represent some of their most efficient tactics. Although this might not apply to every type of e-commerce venture, such techniques are more commonplace than you may have been led to believe.
Online E-Commerce Marketing: Variety is the Spice of Life
Please note that each of these strategies can be used as a standalone technique in order to boost your current marketing campaign. However, you will likely experience more substantial results if they are employed in synergy with one another.
We are all aware that competition throughout the e-commerce sector is continuing to grow. This is why outdated practices should be replaced in favor of the suggestions mentioned above. If these are implemented in a timely fashion, the chances are high that you will be quite pleased with the end results.