Should you increase the sales of your existing online store or create a new successful online store? Whatever your goals are, this article will help you organize the right promotion of your online store. From the basics to the level of a pro!
Our team recommends investing most of the time, effort and budget into the promotion of your website, rather than into its design and appearance. This is why we have tried to make the cost of the ready-made online store very low, so its owner can concentrate on SEO promotion.
When the visitors and orders appear on your website, you can already improve the conversion rates and the usability of the site.
This guide consists of 10 steps and additional tips that will teach you how to promote your online store efficiently, simply and profitably.
For the first step of promotion, first you need to carefully analyze the main points, namely:
- the topic of the site
- visibility of the site
- competitors' sites
This step is especially important to start promoting online stores correctly. Start with an analysis of the overall visibility of the site for all types of requests, ranging from high-frequency to low-frequency.
If the site is still in the process of creation, choose a theme that is clearly consistent with the type of services you provide. From this depends on the fate of your business, because if you select nobody interesting products, you will have too few visits and sales, so the site will not pay for itself and will not bring profits. How to find popular topics of goods?
One of the main conditions for successfully starting a business in eCommerce is the right choice of subject matter. Without this, there is no point in moving forward or hoping to succeed. From the choice of topics will depend on the domain name. As a rule, it helps in further promotion.
To select the topics, use the services of Google Trends (free), Ahrefs (paid), and Google ADS. We recommend spending money on the service Ahrefs, you will need a tool KeywordExplorer. For the analysis, you need to select from the list the region in which you are going to launch a business.
It is best to search for commercial words such as “buy”, “order”. Pay attention to indicators such as Volume – this will help you estimate the total demand for a given product per month. It is possible to move on those keywords that have low KD. It means that the query has low competition and he has a better chance to get to the TOP.
Another important action is to analyze the sites of your competitors. Understand for yourself who your competitors are and how to bypass them. Then you will be able to calculate in advance the financial costs and resources needed to raise your online store to the TOP level.
You can also be inspired by interesting moments that caught your eye on a competitor's website in order to bring something similar to your online store. The main thing is not to resort to plagiarism.
Already at this stage, it is possible to form a USP (Unique Selling Proposition or Offer). When studying your competitors, you can make a checklist of benefits that competitors offer. Next, make your own offer which is more attractive to customers.
Offer is used in several sales channels
It is one of the most important steps for optimization. It is better to correctly implement the structure of the catalog in the beginning than to correct it later. When compiling a complex, multi-level catalog for an online store, consult with SEO specialists. In other words, this is also called the “semantic core” of the site (see step 3). This step is better not to skip and do not economize, the success of further promotion depends on it. The catalog should be clear to the user and the search engines.
This step should not be missed, although at first it may seem that this does not play a role and promotion of the website can be successful at any domain. If your site is still in the process of creation, choose the right domain.
The domain should be an eye-catching and memorable. It may be the name of your brand or type of services provided. As for the domain zone, it is worth choosing based on the focus of your online store in terms of international, national, regional, etc.
In some cases, buying an old domain can help in promotion, but often already existing domains at least once have fallen under search engine sanctions and can be blacklisted by search engines. In this case, the promotion of online store will be a hard task. A new domain with a clean reputation is a great solution. But you should also be prepared for the fact that the new domain will take some time to start appearing in search engine results. If the store is promoted (by the owner or SEO specialists), the first visits on the new domain usually appear 5-7 months after the launch of the site. It is impossible to avoid and accelerate even with big budgets as it is a common rule in Google and other search engines.
If the store is not promoted, and the owner is just waiting – then the visitors will not appear even in 5 years. This will not help even the popular topics of the store, because the more popular topics, the more competitors, respectively, harder to get in the top search engines on these requests.
Search engine promotion of the online store is done with the selection of basic queries, focusing on which the search engines will give your site to the user. Without the right selection of the semantic core, the site will remain in the shadows.
In order to reach many customers, SEO optimization is helpful. In other words, SEO promotion of your online store is a set of measures on the internal and external optimization of the site to raise it to the top lines in the results of extradition, in order to increase the web traffic. The formation of the semantic core is the most important stage of this process.
This promotion of the online store has such advantages:
- does not require constant cash expenditures as contextual advertising;
- easy way to reach the top, as many competitors are investing only in contextual advertising;
- relatively quick way to increase traffic.
What does the term “semantic core” mean? This is a complete list of search queries, all their forms and combinations, which describe products, services provided, the theme of the online store.
The first thing to determine the basic queries (basic keys) – which are the main words or phrases that define the subject of the online store. The keywords are those describing the product and its variety. If you find it difficult to find a basic key on your own, there are services for selecting, so you can use them.
Remove queries that are least used or insufficiently cover the topic. Group the remaining ones. Create semantic clusters – groups of queries with similar meaning, with a layered structure, needed to rationally allocate keywords to specific pages of the site.
An integral part of SEO optimization is internal website optimization. What tasks does it involve?
Fulfillment of each of the points will ensure the successful promotion of the online store. This step can be difficult for the average user, but you can always ask technical experts to do it.
But do not worry; you do not have to deal with it all personally. We have already taken care of most of the internal optimization of your website to make almost all items from this list already generated in our store automatically, as well as there are modules for creating meta-tags templates and many other improvements to the website. The main thing that remains for you is to write (or order) high-quality SEO texts.
External optimization of a site is the creation of a base of links on third-party sites and web resources to your pages. In other words, the more quality resources link to your site the higher the search engine “appreciates” your site by increasing its ranking, improving the position of your site queries, and as a consequence it will increase the organic traffic to your site.
A natural profile requires different types of links. For example:
This way of optimization is effective to increase traffic, create demand for products; increases brand awareness, increases the positive attitude of users to the brand, improve the reputation of the domain, and as a consequence of all this give a huge increase in sales!
It should not be forgotten that search engines are struggling with link cheating and “over spam”, so in this case you cannot overdo it (for example, buy a lot of links to the site), because this could lead to a ban of your site and then he will not be able to promote for years. Often, after such consequences, SEO-specialists recommend changing the domain name of the site.
In addition to the advantages, SEO promotion of the online store has disadvantages:
The website is not pulled into the instant and permanent top on SEO promotion alone. You should also engage in promotion through contextual advertising, targeting, and social networks. Let's take a closer look at each promotion channel.
Targeting is an advertising mechanism that allows you to select the part of your audience which is interested in the topic of your online store and meets the specified criteria (target audience). Advertisements will be shown only to that audience.
Targeting is definitely an effective mechanism, but requires a regular financial contribution.
Social networks are now a great way to promote online stores. Every successful online store has its own page in social networks. Promotion in social networks in the language of marketing is SMM.
The goals of promotion in social networks are the following:
Targeting is actively used in social networks. A characteristic disadvantage of SMM promotion is the constant attention of a specialist to make adjustments.
Contextual advertising is a paid advertising in search engines, which provides the very first place in search queries. It is also called SEM or Search Engine Marketing.
Step 7: Sales through E-mail Marketing
Promoting an online store with e-mail has many misconceptions, here are some of them:
These myths arise from a lack of understanding of the mechanisms of E-mailing. If you use this type of promotion correctly, it will play a crucial role in increasing sales.
You need to know a few terms that will clarify the mechanism of this channel to attract the audience.
E-mail marketing automation is the use of established algorithms that allow you to automatically import data about subscriber customers, segmentation of contacts, automatic compilation and sending of messages.
Trigger messages are individual emails that are triggered by a mechanism under certain conditions, such as subscription to the newsletter, long absence of customer activity, etc.
Web-push is short messages that the user receives in a browser or on a smartphone. They consist of about 50 characters and a picture. They are intended for reminders, notifications of user actions and suggestions.
To start using the E-mail promotion mechanism properly, first organize the collection of the contact base. This can be organized through subscription requests on your site, in which the user has to leave their E-mail address or other data.
For all forms, you need to set a double confirmation of subscription to avoid getting your emails in the spam folder.
Advantages of this promotion channel:
To understand how to promote an online store, it is necessary to understand several other terms, which are also important ways of promotion.
Price aggregators and marketplaces allow the user to find many offers from different stores at once; it makes the choice easier for the user. However, how much easier does it make the work of the owners of an online store?
This is a way for the online store to quickly access a huge number of customers who are already ready to buy a product. On such sites, payment is made for the transition to the site. The cost of accession most often low, it turns out that you pay for a willing client.
The disadvantage is that most likely the client will choose the product of the online store, which offers a more favorable price and purchase terms.
Also, significant in a marketplace is working on ratings and reviews. Positive ratings will increase the chance of buying from your online store, even if the price is average among competitors.
Contextual advertising is quite an extensive tool and some mechanisms of this marketing channel can be applied only when the online store has reached a level of steady development.
The level of confident development (growth) of the online store is self-repayment, taking into account the part of finances which is spent on advertising.
When you have already received positive results from previously used contextual advertising and additional funds for advertising, in this case it is necessary to think about further development of this channel.
Start with the expansion of advertising in search engines, using more frequent queries. This will increase the amount of traffic. Once its stability is achieved, you can move on to using remarketing.
Remarketing is an advertising tool that allows you to show your advertisements on other sites to users who have previously visited your site. This will allow you to:
Also on this level of growth, the promotion of your online store can include advertising in the media sphere, such as in videos or with the help of media personalities (bloggers).
At this point, you should have all available marketing channels with their tools. Then your further task will be mainly to maintain and update. You will also need to perform:
Internet site promotion is a time-consuming process that requires a lot of attention, constant activity and financial expenses, but the result is definitely worth it.