If your CMO is on top of things, then your ecommerce site publishes a blog.
But here’s the unfortunate truth about publishing and managing a blog:
Few brands truly understand how to properly use it as a content marketing tool, and fewer understand how to properly generate traffic to their blog.
This means that e-retailers find themselves in a bit of a quandary. They’ve published a blog because their team (or their CMO) heard that a proper ecommerce website should contain a a blog – and it should!
However, often that blog ends up doing nothing but collecting dust.
Very few consumers feel inclined to read the posts, and that’s if they even realize the blog exists! Worse, the blog posts often stagnate because the marketing team doesn’t understand how to properly execute a traffic generating strategy.
And even if the blog receives a respectable amount of traffic, it’s unlikely that the marketing team has a plan in place to amplify the blog’s traffic, enabling the blog’s content to do its job of creating trust, community, and brand reach.
Fortunately, there are some specific steps that you can take if generating more traffic to your ecommerce blog is a top priority in 2016.
Here are a few of the most effective steps you can take to knock the dust off your blog and allow it to breathe new life into your content marketing:
It should be obvious that the purpose of social media platforms is to socialize with others, but most e-retailers lazily (and ineffectively) use their social media platforms as advertising channels.
While social media platforms may be cheap advertising channels, their real purpose is to create consumer engagement and community. Interestingly enough, blogs share the same purpose. This is why linking to blog content on your social media platforms go together like peanut butter and jelly!
Instead of beating your social media followers over the head with endless streams of product and sales advertisements, why not use your social platforms for their intended purposes?
Start promoting the content of your blog by sharing click-bait from your blog’s content, such as an interesting phrase, or a through-provoking question. Use your social media space to tell stories. Make your followers want to read what you have to say.
When you post content that is useful to your audience, your social platform followers will begin to see your brand as relevant and worth clicking. This in turn, will help you gain more organic exposure on the social platform.
To boost your content even more, take advantage of tools on popular social media platforms to highlight your content, such as Facebook’s Instant Articles or Twitter Cards.
Once your social media followers know that they can count on you to provide valuable nuggets of information on your blog, then your marketing team should notice site traffic improving.
As the name implies, a guest (blog) post is one that’s produced by an author who isn’t regularly affiliated with the host blog. Guest blogging is a strategy that top Internet marketers use in order to spread their brand reach while gaining a willing stream of new traffic.
As it pertains to ecommerce, guest posting can be implemented in one of two ways:
Your content marketing team might not have time to produce fresh content for anyone outside of the organization. However, the content marketing team can work with an influencer a brand ambassador blogger or an online influencer in your industry, helping them with the framework and the tone of the sponsored post.
While many brand ambassador bloggers commonly link to a company’s homepage, it’s far more effective from a traffic perspective to have the blogger link to specific product pages or blog articles. This allows for targeted traffic to find relevant information while leading qualified traffic to subscribe to the blog.
If your content marketing team can spare the time to create a guest posts for a brand ambassador to host on their blog, then all the better. This will ensure that your e-commerce site (and brand) is being represented exactly as you’d wish.
Your content marketing team is better positioned to create a post that contains high authority content such as an advertorial, or an educational how-to post. And of course, the post will link back to relevant content on your company’s blog (instead of simply linking back to an overwhelming homepage on your company’s site).
Unless you understand how SEO correlates to your ROI, it probably hasn’t been a matter of urgency for your content marketing team.
However, understanding basic SEO tactics is crucial for ecommerce content marketers to grasp. The number one method of obtaining new customers is through search engine queries.
Here’s how it breaks down:
Potential customers are looking for products like yours, but first, they’ll want to learn more about the product and if the product is a worthy investment of their money.
Before a shopper blindly makes a purchase, they’ll perform search engine queries on topics such as:
This means that they’ll type very specific queries into search engines like Google. Specified, niche, nuanced search engine phrases are commonly called long-tail keywords. And here’s a secret:
When long-tailed keywords are used in the body of content, they’ll do a far better job of attracting the type of consumers your brand requires for revenue generation.
Publishing a blog on your e-commerce site serves a useful purpose, but your blog’s purpose will never reach its potential unless your content marketing team starts implementing proven, traffic-generating strategies that work fabulously in other sectors. These three tactics provide some of the simplest, most effective ways to get started.
What’s the most effective traffic-booster that’s worked for your ecommerce blog? Or, if you don’t have a blog post yet, what’s your favorite traffic-boosting tactic that you’ve seen from another company? Let me know in the comments!