As an e-commerce brand, your goal is to drive as much targeted traffic as you can to your store—most of which, ideally, should turn into paying customers. You can initiate this by going after paid traffic, which can bring in instant traffic. However, this does require a substantial budget and you need to get it right, else you may expend your entire budget without the results to show for it.
On the other hand, you can embrace organic, targeted and converting traffic, which is free. Although it takes some time to see results, when you do it’s continuous, and a blog can help you get a ton of it.
Having a blog can positively affect your search engine ranking
When blogging is done well, blogging can help your site rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs). The best way of doing this is by creating content that is worth linking to. As your content archive gets bigger you’ll have even more opportunities to earn natural links, which creates an even greater SERP footprint.
For content, instead of housing only product pages, you can add stellar content that’ll enhance the value of your site as well as give you more chances of adding internal links to your homepage—further growing your website’s authority.
Another advantage of keeping a blog is that it keeps your site updated. Search engines love sites that are regularly updated with fresh content and new insights. Fortunately, the freshness factor is factored into the algorithms, where search engines like Google send more traffic to a site when it’s regularly updated. And if the content is timely, you can get more exposure through trending searches, too.
You can also link to your product pages with each blog post you write. Creating such internal links will increase the relevancy of your product pages and someone visiting your blog will benefit from the link because they are well-informed about your products before hitting the product pages, which increases your chances of making a sale.
Integrate blogging with email marketing for best results
As an e-commerce store owner, you should be using different strategies for getting people into your sales funnel. For example, you can have email marketing at the top of your funnel and grow your email list by sprinkling referral program incentives throughout your blog. Then, follow up with your email leads by announcing new blog posts in your structured email campaigns, sending them back to your blog. This will increase your brand’s awareness in the minds of your email list so that they remember you when they are ready to make a purchase.
Interact with customers through your blog
Your blog is the fastest way your customers can learn more about your brand and how your products can make their lives better. They can also decide, through your blogging, if you are an e-commerce brand they trust. Moreover, your blog offers an interface where you can interact with potential buyers to better learn their habits, style, tastes, and preferences. In essence, by listening and communicating with your audience, you’re creating excellent customer relations, enabling you to develop insights into your customers’ buying patterns and how to placate their concerns about your products.
Attract new leads through your blog
You can equally try to rank for keywords which are further up in the buyer process and guide your customers towards your product.
By really focusing on your customers’ buying mentalities, the keywords they’re using and adding value to them via your blog, you can reinvent the buying experience for your target market by employing aggressive marketing and impressive content marketing.
You can take prospective buyers from the beginning of the buying process all the way down to your products using a well-developed sales funnel. At the top of the funnel, you could offer things like guides, checklists, and videos that educate prospective customers. And to then generate leads, you could follow up with case studies, FAQs, etc. Once in the middle of the funnel, go for the sale by offering demos, coupons, and consultations for your products—something that can help the customer further along with their buying decision.
This highlights the exact power that a blog can bring; by using keyword research and providing content that answers the questions that your potential customers are already searching for, you’re automatically engaging them throughout their buying decision. You can double this up by using internal links on your e-commerce site between your blog and your sales funnels, further establishing your footprint in the SERPs and as an authority.
Use blogging as a marketing tool
Combined with effective social media campaigns, blogging serves as a powerful publicity tool.
Producing high-quality content and promoting it to where your audience congregates can send instant traffic to your blog and further raise your e-commerce brand’s awareness. Some brands use only Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube, and neglect blogging. These are great marketing platforms, but they are sometimes ephemeral and limited in nature. But when combined with your blogging practices, such social media platforms can become the catalyst you need to open the traffic floodgates to your brand.
Common e-commerce blogging mistakes to avoid
Going too broad
One prevalent mistake of e-commerce blogs is having too broad a subject matter, something that can occur without following some of the most basic rules of blogging.
Having a lack of scope defeats the purpose of your blog, which is, ultimately, to drive targeted traffic to product pages.
It’s important that you are specific and stay within the niche your product falls in. If you are selling mattresses, for example, it makes sense to center your blogging around topics like sleeping, mattress buying, choosing a pillow, duvets, and similar topics. When you keep writing around a specific theme, you are able to display your expertise and can be seen as an authority on the topic you are talking about.
A lack of consistency
You can’t put up 5-10 posts on your blog and call it a day. To succeed in blogging, you need consistency. Just as it takes time to build a successful e-commerce brand, the same applies to blogging.
It’s not an overnight success. If you are not committed for the long haul, it’ll show in the quality of your blog, and you’ll have failed to achieve the goal of starting the blog in the first place. The result? All your efforts being wasted. As long as you follow the industry’s best practices, you are bound to succeed—it just might not be as quick as you want.
Talking about your brand; stay relevant
Yes, you own your blog and have every right to post anything you want on it. But if you want to create value and cultivate a loyal reader base, you have to blog about what’s relevant to your readers.
Your audience doesn’t care about the blog’s editor, nor do they care that you have celebrities on your payroll. Make your blog a marketing tool, not a soap opera. If customers are finding your blog because they need answers to their questions, they want that answer, not a story about your accomplishments.
It’s okay to talk about your products in some of the posts where relevant, but ultimately, you want the blog to be a phase in your buyer’s journey that leads them further down to your product pages, which is where you can try all your sales stunts.
Letting the blog outrank the product pages
This is a common problem among e-commerce store owners. The blog sometimes outranks the product pages for some of the search terms, which confuse readers as they reach the blog.
This often happens because you mentioned the part of a query you are trying to rank the product page for on your blog, and Google picks that up faster. As you can imagine, the click-through rate will be poor, which might cause the page to lose ranking positions.
If you are facing this problem, the first thing is to diagnose the issue and see what is causing the problem. If it is linking, indexing, or a content issue, then these are easily remedied.
Another possible scenario may be that the ranking ability of the product page is overwhelmed by the blog. In this case, it might be better to put the blog on a subdomain—a practice that is very popular among e-commerce giants—so you have two chances of ranking for the keywords instead of the blog overshadowing the e-commerce side of things.
Your blog serves as a two-way conversation, one where you can receive feedback from your customers as well as constructive criticism and open comments that you can use to improve the customer experience of your product and brand. The more you blog, the more leads you can generate; more email signups, quote requests, and most importantly, an increase in sales.
Also, having a blog helps you rank for long-tail keywords and obscure, less common keyword phrases. Without a blog, you most likely won’t rank for high-converting keyword phrases.
Through blogging, you can accumulate natural links from columnists, authors, and bloggers as you continue to add content that could serve as resources on your blog. Remember, links are important for SEO but they can also bring valuable referral traffic.