One of the biggest challenges for e-commerce businesses is increasing traffic to their online store. With thousands of other online stores competing for the same traffic it is paramount to make your store stand out. Knowing where to start and finding your store’s USP is a daunting task but one that needs to be at the top of your marketing plan. The biggest challenge e-commerce businesses face is being able to stand out in a, usually, highly competitive market with thousands of other online stores competing for the same traffic.
E-commerce has exploded worldwide, the UK e-commerce market is expected to be worth 52 billion by the end of 2015 according to a recent study from Econsultancy. This is great for many established brands but has made it even harder for new e-commerce sites to increase vital traffic in order for the store to stay in business and make money.
In this article we are going to through the most important internet marketing strategies to help increase sales through your online store.
Search Engine Optimisation
#1 Start tracking your organic search rankings and organic traffic growth
To get your website moving up in Google’s organic search rankings you must track your progress. This will not only show the positive increase in your rankings but it will also highlight any falls, allowing you to correct and issues before your rankings plummet. There are a number of different software products that allow users to monitor the progress of their organic rankings such programmes offer users invaluable insights to help improve their website.
#2 Keyword research
Choosing the right search search terms for your website can have a huge impact on the overall success of your website Having an effective keyword map allows you to target the right search traffic towards the most relevant page on your site. A keyword map can also open up your site to new audiences and traffic which it may have been previously missing out on.
#3 Technical SEO
If your site is technically correct from an SEO perspective it will greatly improve your rankings within the search engines for the terms you site is targeting.
Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing is rapidly becoming one of the most important parts of a marketing strategy, with 59% of the UK population have an active social media account. Facebook is the top active social network platform at 43% and with Instagram surprisingly coming last with only 8% of the UK’s population actively on Instagram. Utilising social media networks will let you market your e-commerce business to a mass audience free of charge. Businesses all over the world are discovering the profitable ways social media can contribute to the success growth of their business. Social media is a great tool for generating more exposure and increasing traffic without having to fork out on paid advertising. Sales coming from social media grew by 202% throughout 2014, confirming that social media is an effective way to increase sales. Tools such as Sprout Social can be used to help automate your social media strategy and save you time.
#1 Content – Post daily content and expect to see a continued social media growth
Consistency is key, one of the easiest ways to increase your social media following is to post relevant and consistent content. Different audiences react to different posting frequencies, to find out an optimum frequency level. To do this make sure you are measuring the content’s engagement levels and compare it with that of your competitors. Keeping your social media followers can be time consuming, implementing a social media management tool could save you time, money and some can even create reports from your social media activity, social media management tools allow users to schedule posts across different social media channels and profiles. We highly recommend using Sprout Social for both social media content publication, scheduling and reporting.
#2 Media – Adding media to social media content will boost appeal and engagement amongst your followers
Adding media to an otherwise text-based post makes your content far more appealing and will significantly increase click-through rates. Adding photographs or videos will help you improve post’s engagement. When posting a link to your online store try adding an image as this will make the post stand out in their feed and is more likely to generate engagement and subsequently drive traffic to your online store.
#3 Social sharing buttons – Allows customers to share products or services on social media platforms
Adding social sharing buttons encourage a site’s visitor to share the product/service through their own personal social media platform which is great for increasing brand awareness and traffic. Studies have shown that social media is being used more and more to discover products, social media generally connects users of a similar interest and they value each other’s opinion. Therefore if one user shares a product or content from an online shop it is more often than not their connections will also have an interest in what has been shared and are likely to visit the site too.
Free Business Listings
There’s lot’s of free online business directory listing sites that can help promote your store online. Directories have had bad press over the years but the general rule of thumb is that if it is industry relevant, adds value to your brand and if is managed like a proper site online then you’re usually safe. If it’s just a list of links then steer clear!