E-commerce marketing can do wonders for your business. With the right strategies, you can engage people who are interested in your products, build a base of loyal customers, and grow your influence to reach every corner of your market.
In today’s post, we’re going to teach you different e-commerce marketing strategies ranging from SEO tips, content marketing, social media marketing and more.
If you use just one of these strategies, you’ll see results that can help you grow your brand and your bottom line. Before we dive into the tips, let’s talk about the unique power of e-commerce businesses.
Why E-Commerce Businesses Are The Future
The internet has changed the way people buy and the benefits of e-commerce businesses are impossible to deny.
Here is a short list of benefits e-commerce businesses provide their users:
- Convenience – You don’t have to leave the comfort of your home to purchase from an e-commerce store
- Speed – Most e-commerce businesses offer fast shipping. Just look at Amazon, who’s gone so far as to test ’30 minute drone deliveries’
- Options – When shopping online, you can hand pick the products you want without ever having to visit a store and you can compare prices between different businesses without having to visit them
There are numbers to shed light on the shift in markets too:
- In 2017, e-commerce was responsible for around $2.3 trillion in sales and is expected to hit $4.5 trillion in 2021
- E-commerce accounted for 9.5% of total retail sales in Q1 for 2018.
- As you can see in this graph from the Census Bureau, e-commerce market share is steadily rising:
It’s unlikely that retail will disappear, but it’s obvious the internet is here to stay.
If you’re an e-commerce business owner, providing a great user experience and solid marketing strategies allows you to reach a larger audience than you ever could with a physical location.
As an e-commerce business owner, you’re already sold on the power of the internet. For those who have the potential to move into e-commerce, but haven’t yet, consider how you can market and sell your products online to keep pace with the changing trends for the future.
Now, it’s time for the strategies.
SEO E-Commerce Marketing Strategies
Search engine optimization (SEO) helps put your business in front of people with search intent — meaning those who are actively searching for your product.
SEO works well for e-commerce businesses who do it right. Just take a look at this search engine results page for the phrase “green tea for sale.”
Each page that appears in this picture represents an organic search result. Organic means the businesses achieved these results without using paid advertisements. That’s the beauty of SEO — you can achieve results through effort and sound strategies alone.
These e-commerce SEO strategies will help you rank your business on Google and put it in front of buyers looking for your product.
Here are the e-commerce SEO strategies you must use to succeed.
Optimize All Site Pages
The most important pages on an e-commerce website are it’s category pages, product pages, and blog poss.
You want to optimize your pages using the following techniques:
- Use key phrases in your page titles
- Use key phrases in your meta description
- Place key phrases in your content
- Optimize images by placing key phrases in their ‘alt tags’
- Make sure your content length meets SEO standards
- Add media to your pages like pictures, infographics, and videos
Here’s a great example of an optimized e-commerce website.
Cup & Leafs E-Commerce Product Page SEO Analyzed
The Cup & Leaf blog sells tea products. When you visit one of their product pages you’ll see organized information that also serves an SEO purpose.
Most product pages use the product name in the title. In this example, you’ll see an optimized key phrase as the product title:
When you scroll down, you’ll see a product description that’s optimized but also very informative and persuasive to customers (key phrase highlighted in red):
The content is in-depth, but not overwhelming. It uses key phrases but doesn’t stuff them in the content. It’s informative, describes benefits, and cites reputable sources.
It takes time, but providing on page SEO to each of your products will help them rank on search engines.
Cup & Leafs SEO Content Analyzed
The Cup & leaf blog uses content marketing and SEO through their blog. When you look at their blog page, you’ll see posts with titles that match topics tea lovers might type into Google:
Each blog post has optimized content, but also provides useful and relevant information for readers. This is key because content marketing and SEO are more about making users happy than search engines. Typical optimization doesn’t work anymore. The search engines are ranking content that’s useful for readers. It’s now their number one priority:
Notice the techniques used here:
- Optimized page title
- Key phrase in the first sentence of the content
- Internal & outbound links
- In-depth content
Imagine you’re a tea lover who searches for tips on making great tea. You land on this page and read articles giving you the exact information you’re looking for. Then, when you read the post, it ends with a call to action to check out the company’s products.
This is exactly what Cup & Leaf does.
At the end of one of their posts, you see a call to action to buy their products at a discount:
The owner of the company — content marketing expert Nat Elision — shares the entire SEO & content strategy he used to start the company in this guide.
Highlights from the post:
Research topics – using tools like ahrefs, the Google keyword planner, and more, you can perform keyword research to find topics with traffic volume.
Design the blog to drive sales – each post has a call to action to enjoy a discount or try related products
Gain product reviews – this increases social proof and is a positive ranking factor for SEO
Write long-form content – long-form content is a positive ranking factor.
With a sound SEO strategy employed, you can use more e-commerce marketing techniques to build awareness for your company and ultimately drive leads and sales.
Use the Following E-Commerce Content Marketing Strategies
Content marketing works especially well for e-commerce businesses. To have an effective content marketing campaign, you need to understand the full breadth of the phrase.
Check out this definition of content marketing from the content marketing institute:
Content comes in many forms, including but not limited to:
- Written content – pages and blog posts
- Photos & infographics
- Social media
Let’s walk through examples of different types of content marketing and discuss what they do well.
We discussed SEO and content marketing for e-commerce businesses already, but it’s important to know the details of running a successful content marketing campaign. Here are some need to know items.
When you do the right research, you can create a strategy that targets the right customers and creates the types of content they want to read.
You can use keyword research — a staple of SEO — to discover topics people are actively searching for.
Check out our guide to keyword research for more detail.
You can also research what your competitors are doing well to create better content and use strategies like link-building to leapfrog them in search.
Here’s an example. Using the Ahrefs tool, you can discover a lot of useful information about a competitor. Sticking with our tea example, I found a tea company and looked for search data:
In the organic keywords section of the tool, you can see the keywords that get the most traffic and links to the pages receiving the traffic:
Then going into the individual pages, you can see where they’re gaining links from, as well as important metrics to know like site authority, the number of backlinks, and the phrases the single page ranks for:
Using the ahrefs keyword analyzer tool, I can estimate the number of links I need to build to the page:
Next, I’d create a piece of content about chai tea lattes and make it more detailed entertaining and informative than the competitor’s post.
Then, I’d build links to the page by sharing the content with people who are likely to link back to the page. This is known as the skyscraper technique.
You can also leverage reviews to discover what your customers like and dislike about your type of product. Check out this review on Amazon for a green tea product:
Using these insights, I make create content discussing both the quality and cost-effectiveness of my product.
Question and answer sites like Quora provide useful information as well. I typed in “chai tea” on Quora and got the result:
Knowing people want to know the difference between masala and chai tea, I could create content on this topic. My result may even show up in a cool Google snippet like this one:
Once you have solid e-commerce marketing research you can implement your campaign.
It’s important to know your target audience, goals, and key performance metrics before you begin creating content.
You also want to create a content calendar with topics you want to write about and block out time to create content.
If you’re an e-commerce business owner, you might not have time to create the content yourself. This is where a digital marketing agency can come in handy.
At MLT Group we have the staff, resources, and creativity to create a content marketing campaign for your business.
If you’re interested in a done for you e-commerce marketing strategy, fill out the form below for a free audit:
Video content marketing has grown in popularity in recent years.
Here’s some data on video per Hubspot:
- 97% of marketers say video has helped increase user understanding of their product or service
- 76% say it helped them increase sales
- 76% say it helped them increase traffic.
If you leverage video the right way, it can do wonders for your business.
In a perfect example, Dollar shave club used viral video to grow their business:
In our breakdown of their marketing strategy, we highlighted the following reasons why their campaign worked so well:
- Hook your audience
- Keep your brand consistent
- Know your audience
- Have a clear message
- Don’t get lost in your own video
Pay attention to how they used humor, shock value, and intrigue to make a boring product suddenly interesting.
In addition to branding power, video content marketing can help your business rank on search engines.
Photos & Infographics
Visual content has multiple benefits.
First, it’s a different form of branding and marketing people love.
Second, you can use them to increase important SEO metrics like time spent on page and reducing your bounce rate.
An example from Gadget Snob shows great use of photos on an e-commerce landing page:
When you click into one of their products, you see excellent use of captivating photos in their “related products” section:
This clean and crisp site design and photo usage compel visitors to check out the site’s products.
You can also use infographics within the body of your blog posts to keep readers engaged (pro tip: use a plugin to make your images pinnable on Pinterest).
You can write an entire guide on social media usage for e-commerce marketing.
Shopify has an excellent breakdown of social media tips on their infographic:
You can use social media to market your e-commerce business in a variety of ways.
You can create streaming videos and commercials educating users about your product, sharing benefits, and entertaining them.
When you create a new blog post, you can cross-promote your content through all social media channel.
You can become a member of social media groups related to your niche and become an active participant.
Paid social media ads are always a cost-effective way to build your e-commerce brand and drive traffic to your website.
Here’s an example of a product display ad on Facebook:
When running Facebook ads as part of the e-commerce marketing strategy for your business, you can use a ton of different techniques to drive traffic to your website:
- Run promotions and discounts
- Create a giveaway of your product where users enter their email address as a ‘raffle ticket’
- Put commercials and videos in your ads
- Create remarketing ads that display to visitors who visited your site but didn’t buy
- Create a lookalike audience based on metrics and demographics of your target audience
- Use ‘boosts’ to drive traffic to your blog posts to aid your content marketing efforts
- Cross promote your Facebook ads to Instagram
Social media has many applications. Whatever channel or method you use, make sure to make social media a core part of your e-commerce marketing strategy.
These e-commerce marketing strategies are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to growing your business.
Choose one, or a few, and utilize them to gain traffic, leads, and sales.
Use them to build your brand and stand out in your industry.
If you’re looking for expert content marketing and SEO help, learn more about becoming a strategic business partner with MLT Group.