5 Social Media Etiquette Rules Marketers Should Always Follow

Social media is an integral part of everyone’s world these days. Brands have huge audiences to tap into on the various social platforms. Unfortunately, too many brands are misusing social media for their own benefit. As a brand, are you making this mistake? These 5 social media etiquette rules can help you change your approach for the better. You’ll see better results when you follow these rules because your audience will appreciate each of them.

1. Don’t just respond, initiate.

Yes, it’s important to be responsive when social users talk about you. You want to be present and engaging with those people. Tools like Respond by Buffer can help you with this.

If you have the responsiveness covered, are you taking the time to include initiating conversations? You have options for how you can do this easily and efficiently. The benefits of this outreach can be great for your business because few brands do this.

 

Twitter chats

To start, Twitter chats are a highly effective way to initiate conversations, either as the host or a participant. If you’re new to Twitter chats, they are live conversations where people tweet about a pre-assigned topic, using a branded hashtag in every tweet. People follow along by monitoring the established hashtag.

As an example, Express Writers hosts a chat with their #ContentWritingChat hashtag. They promote the topic the day before, and people join in at the assigned time: Tuesdays at 11am EST. During the chat, Express Writers sends out questions about the topic, and people respond with their opinions.

How can you benefit from initiating your own Twitter chat? Well, you build influence and a loyal following to start. You also build relationships with the influencers you bring in as special guests. In the long run, Twitter chats help you bring in more committed customers who trust you because of your engagement on Twitter.

How can you benefit simply from participating in Twitter chats? You don’t and shouldn’t just answer the questions during the chat. More importantly, you should start 1-to-1 conversations with other participants. Respond to their answers or start a side conversation about something else. These side chats during the main one can be great for getting your brand out there to people who may not already know who you are.

 

Social media monitoring

Twitter chats are great for starting conversations in a set environment, but it’s not the only way to initiate conversations with your target audience. You should also be monitoring specific keywords surrounding your brand and business offerings.

Without being too creepy, you want to monitor whenever someone posts a specific keyword that matters to your business, such as “need financial services” if you offer such a service. If you’re wondering how you can do this, you have options:

  • Hootsuite gives you social monitoring options with their platform. You can set up feeds based on the keywords you select. These feeds can be combined with any other feed types to make it easy to both initiate and respond in one place.
  • Mention also has a social monitoring service. This one is a bit more advanced than Hootsuite. Their product can help with both initiation and responsiveness by allowing you to monitor your brand and selected topics.
  • Synthesio is probably as advanced as you can get for social media engagement services. It gives you thorough data about how people are engaging with you and what you can do to initiate based on complete analyses about your industry, competitors, and customers.

When you’re actively looking for opportunities to initiate conversations with prospects, you’re taking your brand ahead of your competitors. You’re getting your name out there and building trust with others. Social media is about conversations, so your best results will come from participating in them.

 

2. Do your research before using hashtags and other platform features.

One of the mistakes brands make on social media involves hashtag misuse. When you’re ready to publish a tweet, you want to optimize it for reach. Too often, you may choose the wrong or least-effective hashtags. That’s why research is key.

When you want to use the best hashtags for reaching the right audience, use a research tool to help you understand which one(s) will work best. There are two options that come to mind right away:

RiteTag is a paid program that gives you hashtag suggestions within Twitter, Facebook, and most other social platforms. For $49 a year, you get access to these hashtag suggestions, trend alerts for new popular hashtags for your topic, and more key features. It’s a handy tool if you want to know what’s effective at the very moment you’re posting content.

Hashtagify is a free alternative to Keyhole. You can research hashtags in an encyclopedia or pay for the pro plan to get suggestions based on your Twitter account activity. The website offers many ways to research hashtags to find the right one(s) for your content and purposes.

Hashtags are tricky when you are either new to social media or overwhelmed by it. To fully understand the best practices, you need to keep in mind:

  • Hashtags have different meanings and popularity per platform. What is popular on Twitter might be nonexistent on Instagram.
  • Don’t make your hashtags too long. The only exception is on Instagram, but with a 140-character limitation, Twitter is not the place for long hashtags. Keep them 1-3 words long, and be as specific as you can.
  • You don’t want to include more hashtags than your main text. This is true for all platforms. Even though Instagram is a great place for more than 10 hashtags per post, you still want to include a description that doesn’t get lost in the crowd.
  • Whatever you do, don’t send out tweets that #look #like #this. Make sure you’re only using the pound sign for the keywords that matter.

Another research issue is when brands start using new platform features without a clear understanding of how to do so, who the typical audience is, and what the audience wants to see. Live-streaming is a great example of this.

With live video appearing on Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat in the form of “stories,” it can get confusing as to what brands are supposed to do with the feature. You might think that you can take the same approach on all three platforms, but that isn’t best practice. In fact, you need to re-evaluate whether you should build your own live-streaming strategy for each platform.

Facebook’s audience is different from Instagram and Snapchat. People on Instagram expect to see different content than they would on Snapchat or Facebook. It’s important that you research and understand these differences.

These are a few resources for using live-streaming effectively on social media:

The key in all of this is the importance of doing proper research before acting. If you’re making assumptions or ignoring best practices, you’re playing a guessing game that won’t give you the best results you could get. You may still see engagement, but optimizing your content will give you even better results.

 

3. Create customized content for each platform.

You want to save as much time as possible on social media, and there are tools out there that make cross-posting easy. However, remember this:

 

Not all platforms are the same, and this includes content appearance.

 

For example, we can go back to the last point about research. The hashtags on one platform might mean something completely different on another. Most platforms accept hashtags, even LinkedIn now, but are they effective everywhere? Facebook is not an ideal place for hashtags, so you don’t want your tweet content to appear there.

 

You also want to keep in mind:

  • Each platform has its own character limitations. Twitter only accepts 140 characters, but Instagram and LinkedIn give you much more room to use. Facebook also allows longer posts, but on that platform, shorter is more effective. Keep in mind that if you share a longer post, such as from Instagram, onto Twitter, it’ll get cut off and look messy.
  • Each platform allows for different kinds of multimedia. Facebook allows for live video, recorded video, links, photos, and much more in your posts. On the other hand, Instagram only allows short videos and photos. Links are not recommended there. If you share a post on Facebook with a link and try to cross-post to Instagram, it won’t look good.

Instead of cross-posting your content in the same exact format on all your platforms, consider a different approach: cross-promoting. The difference is that you’ll still be sharing the same content but just formatting it differently for each platform. It’ll optimize your content so that you see better engagement and overall results.

 

4. Don’t be a robot.

Social media is all about being, well, social. It’s about engaging in conversations with other users and your audience. If you automate everything you do on social media, you miss out on the main point of social media. Instead of relying too much on automation, consider engaging as often as possible.

You can start by offering real-time customer service, which is now expected rather than ideal. Your audience is reaching out to you online, but if you’re not answering, you’re hurting your brand reputation.

Even if you build a bot for customer service, you still need to be there to give people a human being to assist them. Chatbots aren’t ideal. In fact, Rob Siefker, Senior Director of Zappos’ customer loyalty team, insists that artificial customer service will hurt the experience rather than help. Chatbots don’t have that essential human element in their programming, and customers want that.

Engagement, in general, is key to making the most of social media. You want to see a return on your investment, and engagement is how you’ll get it. On Twitter, use direct replies to have 1-on-1 conversations with other users. On Facebook, ask questions and use images to increase engagement. Those are just two of the many ways you can build relationships with your audience.

The important part to remember is:

You don’t need to stop automating and scheduling content, but you do need to reserve plenty of time and resources for engaging with your audience in real-time.

 

5. Use direct messages for the right reasons.

Direct messages are often misused, and many brands think this feature isn’t worthwhile. They are often used for automated sales pitches and generic welcome messages, but what about using them for the right reasons? Use them for customer service.

Facebook, Twitter, and other social media services allow for private messaging between brands and users. It’s an opportunity for businesses to interact with their audience in a safe environment without character limits and public exposure.

Direct messaging can also make shopping easier. It not only allows for customer service inquiries but also what is often coined “conversational commerce” where your customers get quick and easy access to your business and its offerings. For example, Facebook bots make it easy for people to shop right from Facebook Messenger with one action.

As long as you’re using direct messaging for the right reasons, it still has potential for your business. Use it to continue public interactions in a private setting, and take advantage of its sales potential.

 

In conclusion

These are five of the most important etiquette rules that you must obey in order to see the best outcomes from your social media marketing efforts. If you neglect any of these rules, you’ll miss out and even hurt your business potential.

Would you add any rules to this list? Which ones were you already aware of versus which ones surprised you? Leave a comment with your input!

social media etiquette rules

The post 5 Social Media Etiquette Rules Marketers Should Always Follow appeared first on GetResponse Blog – Online Marketing Tips.

Optimized the Hell Out of Your Client’s AdWords Account? Don’t Drive More Traffic, Do This Instead

This is Dale (okay, it’s actually Corey, our Director of Campaign Strategy), but we’ll call him Dale for the sake of this post). Dale is the Manager of Paid Media at a local digital marketing agency.

Look at Dale’s face and tell me you don’t see yourself 👀.

Dale is an AdWords wizard, so much so that he’s optimized his clients’ accounts to the point where he can no longer get a notable conversion lift.

He’s tried everything: changing bids, testing ads, adding negative keywords, sitelinks, geography targeting — but no matter what he tweaks, he’s unable to push beyond the dreaded conversion plateau.

Dale is stuck between a rock and a hard place; he can either ask his clients for more money to send more traffic to their not-so-specific site (rock), or he can keep banging his head against his desk (hard place, literally).

But wait, Dale! There’s another way — one that doesn’t result in head trauma. One that has the potential to supercharge your client’s ad spend and help you retain more clients (not to mention make you the hero of your agency and the envy of your co-workers — ooh la la).

That “other way” is to focus on the post-click experience.

What is the post-click experience and why should you care?

Before we define the post-click experience, we need to dissect what goes into a conversion rate.

A conversion rate is the result of three very important components coming together:

  1. Your client’s offering (the thing or service they’re actually selling)
  2. Your client’s industry
  3. The surrounding marketing strategy (this is where you can have the biggest impact as an agency marketer)

The marketing strategy can further be broken down into pre- and post-click strategy. The pre-click experience is whatever happens before your client’s prospect clicks through on an ad — it’s what you’re already spending 80% of your day optimizing deep in the trenches of AdWords, Bing, Facebook, Twitter and Google Analytics. It’s all about getting people to the next stage in the funnel.

The post-click experience, on the other hand, includes whatever happens after your client’s prospect clicks through — everything from how accurately the landing page copy matches the ad’s promise to how well the page conveys the offer to how much the page asks of your visitors and whether the ask is aligned with the visitor’s current buyer stage.

You might be thinking, Cool, but this falls outside my job description. And you’d be right.

But let’s face it, if your agency is only focused on improving the ad experience, you’re drastically limiting the impact you can have on your client’s on-page conversion rates. Convincing your team to allocate time and resources to optimizing the post-click experience will result in converting more of those clicks you work so hard to get.

The image on the left represents the visitors that drop off after they click through your ad. However, allocating resources to the post-click experience via landing page optimization can help you drastically impact on-page conversion rates without increasing ad spend — more like the image on the right.

Focusing on the post-click experience (or where people land after an ad) won’t just increase on-page conversion rates. It can impact other metrics you’re trying to impact while optimizing in AdWords.

Here’s what I mean…

Let’s say your client is a Canada-wide alternative health clinic. Right now you’re running ads for each of its 18 locations, but your client has provided you with a generic, catch-all page on their website, to send all this ad traffic to. This generic website page lacks a clear call to action, and the copy doesn’t match the ads, which are hyper-targeted based on location and service.

Example of a generic, catch-all webpage, with your ad’s offer circled in red.

You know that a more targeted page would perform better, so you convince your agency to create several targeted landing pages instead. You create unique pages for each service this client offers (like massage therapy, homeopathy, and acupuncture )and drive very specific ads to these corresponding pages. You can even go as far as to use Dynamic Text Replacement to ensure the search intent is reflected from ad to landing page.

Example of a targeted landing page, with a single call to action and a headline which matches the ad copy.

In this case, by focusing on the post-click experience with dedicated landing pages, you’re indicating to the visitor they’ve made a “good click.” Your agency starts to notice an increase in on-page conversions, which results in lower cost per lead; you’re doing more with the same ad spend. But here’s the clincher: Your client’s AdWords Quality Score improves, thereby — wait for it — lowering CPC. (Insert mind-blown gif here.)

Virginia-based digital agency Workshop Digital did it. They were able to test their way up to 20-22% conversion rates — four times the leads their client was getting prior — without driving more traffic, but instead by allocating resources to the post-click experience.

What does focusing on the post-click experience look like?

The simplest and most impactful way to improve the post-click experience is to introduce landing page design and optimization as a service your agency provides.

The first step is to build dedicated landing pages for your client’s campaigns using best practices and insights about your client’s industry from the Conversion Benchmark Report. (This will take some collaboration with your client to determine which offers to roll out.)

The second step is to optimize your client’s pages to increase the conversion rate over time, like Workshop Digital did:

“We started testing everything from images to backgrounds, slideshows, videos, copy, headline placement, form placement, button placement. At first we just played around with what we thought would work. And we started slowly seeing improvements. Every landing page iteration we tested would get incrementally better.”

Optimize your client’s entire AdWords funnel, convert more prospects and lower your cost-per-acquisition with dedicated landing pages from Unbounce.

How to offer landing page optimization services at your agency

Working landing pages and optimization into your agency’s offering doesn’t have to be a mammoth task (we promise!).

Get everyone on board

We get it, there are a ton of people that need to buy into landing pages and optimization before your team can start running with it.

They’re like you; they need evidence that what you’re proposing will actually help the business, the bottom line or even just make their lives easier. Lucky for you, here are four reasons you can provide your team:

  1. Build long-term relationships with your clients by launching and optimizing specific, targeted campaigns versus one-off, generic campaigns.
  2. Unlock a new revenue stream for your agency (Montreal-based digital agency Webistry saw a 23% increase in revenue by offering landing pages and a 50% increase in average retainer fees by offering optimization services).
  3. Get ahead of (or at least on par with) your competition, who might already be offering landing page and optimization services.
  4. Improve your client’s AdWord’s Quality Score and break through the conversion plateau… basically impress the heck out of your client.

Price your services

Working landing pages and optimization into your pricing can be tricky, and what works for one agency may not work for the next.

Is landing page design a staple service of yours? Will you offer follow up, maintenance and optimization services? Or are landing pages simply an add-on that you’ll teach clients to maintain themselves? Here’s how a few successful agencies already do it:

  1. Include landing pages in your retainer fee, like Utah-based Disruptive Advertising. They include landing pages in their pricing, whether their client uses it or not. (And guess what? 95% of their clients do use it.)
  2. Charge your client for landing pages directly, like digital marketing agency Third Wunder, who establishes a flat fee and then makes additions based on the client’s needs, or Titan PPC, who charges a flat fee of around $500-$700 for a custom landing page.

Pitch it to your client

Getting your client on board is slightly different from getting your agency on board, although the premise is the same: Show them how it will improve their business. Here are a few points that might stick.

  1. Sending ad traffic to your catch-all page with a high attention ratio is a waste of money. Dedicated landing pages, on the other hand, have an attention ratio of 1:1, and therefore a higher chance of conversion.
  2. Landing pages increase ROI thanks to a principle called message match, whereby your ad copy matches your landing page copy.
  3. You can keep upping your ad spend… or you can optimize what you’ve got. Landing pages compound PPC efforts so you can convert the traffic you’ve already got, versus paying for more traffic.

And for future clients, consider doing what Webistry does and don’t give clients the option. Landing pages and optimization are an essential part their offering, and help them get the best results for their clients.

Final thoughts

As a paid media manager, you may never have focused on the post-click experience… but it could make your job optimizing a ton easier.

Armed with the tools required to build and optimize your client’s ad-to-landing-page experience, your team will amplify your PPC efforts, impact the metrics that matter and, ultimately, impress and retain the people who matter the most: your clients.

Original Source: Optimized the Hell Out of Your Client’s AdWords Account? Don’t Drive More Traffic, Do This Instead

How to Measure Whether Your Content Marketing Strategy is Results-Driven

Content marketing, and a good content marketing strategy, are essential for success in today’s market. A good strategy is something which helps people plan for how they will bring new traffic and conversions to their online presence. Even such a seemingly simple thing as a blog post is a useful addition to a content marketing strategy — if it brings in leads.

Creative content agencies will encourage businesses to form a coherent strategy for content marketing because such a strategy, if successful, can mean that businesses can consider and try out other marketing strategies without suffering from any loss of revenue. Another reason having a strategy is being able to form a coherent brand, and perhaps also to find ways in which your marketing can teach your intended audience, as well as persuade them to become customers.

It is important to know that there is a visible difference between a content marketing strategy, and a content marketing plan. Where a content marketing strategy asks why, a content marketing plan asks how, so the strategy should come first. The strategy lays out all the details of why the business is creating content, who it is being created for, and why the potential customers should look to that business over others. In contrast, the marketing plan, according to top content marketers, should contain information which is more along the lines of what topics will be covered in the marketing itself, and what content the business will create, and so on.

 

How to Develop a Content Marketing Strategy

A good content marketing strategy will help to show how the marketing itself will introduce people and potential customers to the business and what it values, as well as detailing how that will be addressed. There are no strict rules for what such a strategy should look like, but many creative content agencies cite the following five rules as good components of any strategy.

  1. Make the case for using content marketing: there are many forms of marketing – explain why the business chose content marketing over them.
  2. Explain what the content marketing itself will involve. What will the business achieve through content marketing, what they are going to provide through said content, and what the customers themselves need.
  3. Audience personas and content marketing maps: describe the audiences who the business is targeting, what values it is going to show through the marketing, and what the needs of its audience are.
  4. Brand story: what message does the business want to get across to its audience, and what values.
  5. Channel plan: what channels are the business going to use to spread their message? Will social media be involved?

 

Measure your content marketing strategy: goals to achieve

Results-driven strategy

The best content marketing agencies will make sure that the businesses they work with are clear about what they want out of their content marketing – what goals they have. A business knowing what they want to work towards in terms of the goals they want to achieve. Knowing what results they want in terms of content, channels, and audience at the very least makes it more likely that the strategy will be successful.

 

Failed strategy

Not every strategy is successful. Sometimes the audience has been misjudged, or sometimes they don’t respond as well to the brand which is being marketed to them as was previously thought. A failed strategy does not necessarily mean a complete failure, however. It simply means that whichever part of the process failed needs to be re-evaluated.

A strategy which is not fully thought out is one which is more likely to fail. Therefore, it is necessary to be absolutely sure of your goals when it comes to content marketing management.

 

The research done

Results-driven

Research which is driven by results is research that knows, in some form, what it wants. While knowing the exact results would negate the need for research, it is important to at least know some general points about the direction you want your research to take – what audience uses social media, for example, and what iteration of the company brand would be best received.

 

Failed strategy

Research can sometimes fail, through either the fault of the business, or the fault of inaccurate information. Sometimes a business does not always pay attention to the result of their research, leading them to make decisions which are not in their best interests. Sometimes the information itself is out of date, for various reasons. This can lead to a business taking certain marketing avenues, but not achieving the desired results due to having outdated information.

 

Types of content and channels

Results-driven

The type of content and the channels used can differ according to the audience which you seek. Good research will help sort out which channels and what content is best. For example, social media is better for a younger audience, while blogs and traditional websites are good for older audiences. Social media relies on smaller pieces of content than do blogs, and so on.

 

Failed

Failed strategies in this, again, revolve around a lack of research. A good example would be the use of social media; bad research would lead businesses to use social media to reach an audience which has no use for social media. The content marketing would fail, as it would have no way of reaching the intended target audience.

 

Tracking

Results-driven

Tracking results during the content marketing process is vital for a good company. The best content marketing agencies will all recommend it, as businesses can track how the marketing is faring by using it, and so keep a better eye on what is happening.

 

Failed

Failed strategy in this area can come about either through a failure to track anything in the marketing campaign, or a failure to do anything about the information being tracked. If a business knows that one area of marketing is not successful, then leaving it as-is is a failure.

 

Updating and Experiments

Results-driven

This naturally follows on from tracking – having a content marketing strategy allows you to explore new ideas which might act as good follow-ons from what is currently happening.

 

Failed

Running experiments with no clear idea of what works and what doesn’t in a marketing campaign. Not knowing what is working in a particular campaign means that any experiments lack support in that area, and are more likely to fail.

 

Conclusion

The top content marketing companies will tell businesses that having a coherent content marketing strategy, one which covers the five stages of planning, implementing, measuring, analyzing, and improving is imperative for success. Following these five stages will allow for the creation of a strategy which is likely to succeed.

results driven content marketing

The post How to Measure Whether Your Content Marketing Strategy is Results-Driven appeared first on GetResponse Blog – Online Marketing Tips.

4 Steps to Create a First-Rate eCommerce Website

Back in the day, any kind of trade had fewer opportunities to expand sales among new customers. No, I don’t want to mislead you saying that the trade was on a low level. If you “drip for a while” in the history of trade, you will discover that this ancient craft has always been one of the most powerful sources of income around the world.

The problem of getting new customers and building new business connections was due to the necessity of exploring new horizons that took lots of time and efforts. Corsairs, storms, and, of course, huge distances were the barriers traders had to overcome.

Lots of famous traders still pique interest to their past commerce. And it is not surprising. Our modern society has improved its general level of trade facilitation thanks to a selling practice that our ancestors had contributed before.

Thanks to the age of the internet the process of a trade creation has become much easier to do. Yes, with the help of eCommerce web platforms, every trader can sell products without leaving the office at all. Nevertheless, if you want to see any progress in your eCommerce sales, you should take care of your web resource properly. You should adjust your content marketing to various audience types to combine that strategy with a few more basic tactics.

In this guide, I am going to show you four steps that will help you create a first-rate eCommerce website and attract customers you deserve.

 

1. Make sure you know how to identify and attract your target audience

I won’t claim that it is hard to identify the niche you believe your service or production belongs. The only thing you will have to do is to think wisely what kind of help you are able to offer your potential clients. You can ask yourself a few standard questions like:

 

What products do I sell?

It could be whatever you want, starts with some material goods (music instruments, automobiles, audio/video tech etc.) and ends with various personal services (tutorials, courses, lessons, etc.).

 

Who are the main competitors in your niche?

Every industry has its leading authorities and these names are familiar to everybody. Let say, the leaders in the world of music instruments are such brands as Ibanez, Fender, Warwick etc. If we consider sportswear, then these brands are Adidas, Nike, Puma and so on. The same happens with your niche. Just make some research and you’ll find out the competitors you should stick to.

Once you find the answers to these two questions, you can be sure your niche. Afterwards, you will have to dive deeper into developing a strategy on how to make your eCommerce website attractive to your customers.

Frankly speaking, perhaps, every marketer wants to have fewer competitors than he or she has in the niche. To be honest with you, I would, , say that we all want to be the leaders in our business, and that’s why we claim not to have so many competitors.

Do you remember the statement “every cloud has a silver lining”? Try to think that you should respect your competitors and try to work them to the benefit.

How could you do this? Discover your competitors’ blogs and attract their clients for yourself. Let me show you how to do it.

Let’s presume that your eCommerce website sells sportswear and you have lots of competitors in this niche. There is no sense in spying for customers against such brands as Nike, Puma and others similar. I am quite sure, you won’t impress these clients with your unpopular production. Instead, you ask Google something like “buy sportswear online” and check out what it suggests for you:

 

first rate ecommerce website

 

As you can see there is a bunch of websites related to your niche. They look good in terms of the domain rating they have, the organic traffic they get, and, of course, the number of backlinks. Let’s have a look the example:

 

ecommerce website techniques

 

Furthermore, it is obvious that content marketing involves running a blog with high-quality content. Thus, it is preferable for you to find blogs in your niche that take the highest positions in Google search. It will allow you to check out what kind of content these blogs publish, what their readers say in comments, what they like and dislike. By analyzing these aspects of competitors’ blogs, you will be able to turn your own blog into the desirable place for your potential clients.

The next position you shouldn’t forget is to try to find out your customers’ needs. As I’ve mentioned above, examination of comments on competitors’ blogs is one of the best ways to understand customer needs. If you want to go further, I recommend you work a bit with Quora.

No doubts you are familiar with Quora and you know that it is a platform where people ask questions and get answers. What an ideal place for seeing what people need. It works simply – just put an inquiry and you’ll get related questions to your inquiry and all possible replies:

 

how to build a first rate ecommerce website

 

I don’t say you will be armed with all points with the information you will get from comments on Quora, but the general needs of the clients you will understand.

 

2. Adjust your ecommerce website to various types of content

I won’t give you the explanations why content is important for your eCommerce business. There are many factors that prove one good statement “content is king”. If you are still an outsider in content marketing, here are a few reasons you should know about content:

  • It adds value to your production (and brand in general)
  • It generates new leads and sales
  • It works great as a tool for engagement your target audience
  • It increases traffic

Search engines love high-quality and long-form content.

Don’t be under the delusion that content is just a rough text. No. Firstly, content is any sort of information you want to share with your audience. Please, pay your attention to the nuance that I said “audience” but not “readers”. In this very way, I want to underline that you can present the information in a few different ways.

 

Video content

In contrast to written content, video one has a higher level of user engagement. You just imagine, using videos you will be able to introduce your production from different angles. You can check out YouTube and see what your competitors upload on their brand channels. For instance, you want to introduce your users a new collection of indoor running shoes but you have no idea what the video should look like. Thus, back to leaders in your niche and make a detailed research of their video material. Here is how Nike advertised their collection of Air Max 1 running shoes:

 

how to build a first rate ecommerce website

 

You could adjust your own video content strategy to the same way and, even, add something more interesting for your customers. How about “how-to” videos? I liked the example on how to lace running shoes from eCommerce web platform runningwarehouse.com:

 

how to build a first-rate ecommerce website

 

The more images you create, the more (happy) clients you’ll have

However, if you tend to “old-school” text type content, I highly recommend you create content based on images. Plus, you should remember that your customers want to see the production your eCommerce website offers. Let me provide you with a few examples of using images in content. For instance, sportsshoes.com offers a wide range of sports shoes for the customers attaching images of all shoe models they have:

 

how to build a first-rate ecommerce website

 

You might ask me “But where is the example of text content with images?” Very fair question. At first, I want to underline that customers don’t want to read long-form content where you describe apparel. Instead, you should focus on pitching your customers with images of your production adding a brief text description of it. The great examples of this strategy are by using Instagram and Pinterest:

 

how to create a first-rate ecommerce website

 

Pinterest allows you to add more-or-less proper description of the product with all necessary details. Instagram is more designed for high-quality images. Yeah, you can add a few descriptive words for the image in contrast to Pinterest. However, you can add as many as 30 hashtags:

 

how to build a great ecommerce website

 

If you still are curious about text content with images that is related to some sort of product customers can purchase on an eCommerce website, you should check out the next example. Because I would like to consider various types of production (not only sportswear), here is a wonderful example of eCommerce blog that contains different articles on furniture, decorations, and decor:

 

one kings lane ecommerce website

 

It is just a part of the article from this eCommerce website’s blog called One Kings Lane. As you can see, the owner of this web resource can use content marketing strategy in the right direction. You can take your cut from this example and do the same.

Nevertheless, content marketing is only a part of the whole strategy for boosting your eCommerce online shop. You should keep an eye on building close connection with your customers. And I am going to give you a few insights on it.

 

3. Don’t forget to build connection with customers

I am quite sure that if a business owner has tight business relationships with customers, he or she will succeed. But how to build this connection with a target audience? No worries, I would like to introduce you a few tricks on how to do it. Before I start, I would like to explain you a bit why it is so important for every businessman who wants to be ahead of the competitors.

During building connections with your customers, you should not only get the information you need for your own business but share something useful with the customers as well. You must listen to their needs, problems and, as the result, give some pieces of advice. If you are interested only in promoting your brand, your customers will realize that the only thing you are focused on is money. As for me, being a customer of whatever I use, I don’t like selfish and arrogant companies or services who are struck blind with itself forgetting about everything around.

Your business depends on the customers you have because these customers are your direct source of income. And here are, basically, the ways of connections:

  • Comments.

Why do we, as consumers, use the comment section on websites? Simply just for leaving our opinion on something; thoughts, likes, and, even, dislikes. And it is the norm for customers and for website owners. Taking a participation in the comment section you are able to reveal your brand (and products) in a vaster way, plus sharing some other useful information. For example, you could advise your customers various services for their needs – different pricing optimization platforms like UpstreamCommerce, influencer marketing platforms for amplifying messages like, for instance, HYPR and so on. The main purpose for you, as a website owner, to react to the comments fast and efficiently.

  • Help or FAQ.

This section is an integral part of any website, including eCommerce. You should remember that FAQ section is the place where you can present all the answers to the questions that people tend to ask about your products. When a customer sees that you didn’t regret your time writing answers to the most frequent questions, he or she will understand that you take care of the consumers. Your desire to help the client will reward you.

  • Live chat.

Yeah, the first thing you might think about is your time. I totally agree with you that spending your time in a Live chat is very time-consuming. Nevertheless, if you want to be as closer to your customer as you can, Live chat is a wonderful option for this. Be patient, relax and be ready to reply to whatever your customers will ask you. Pay attention to the questions that might bring you some insight that you will be able to implement in your products (perhaps some new model of a jacket).

  • Insiders.

Use Facebook for creating an ‘Insider’ page of your product. Share news about the product your brand produces, take a part in comments your customers leave, have a personal chat with your clients. Believe or not but “Insider” pages really work great in terms of building tight business relationships with your customers.

 

But what about Social Media platforms?

As far as you know, any business owner who runs an online business uses the major social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, and Pinterest. Yeah, we use social media for searching new business contacts and opportunities. However, you should be clever in terms of using social media accounts and create all the accounts attractive with the information related to your niche. Here are the examples of how you can use each social media platform:

  • LinkedIn.

This platform is the first place you should create an account as a businessman. It doesn’t matter whether you have already succeeded in your sphere of business or you’ve just launched a new eCommerce web resource. LinkedIn will help you reveal new useful business contacts that might bring new customers.

  • Facebook

You might claim that Facebook is the place where people spend their time just for fun. I won’t get into an argument with you about it but Facebook has the other side of the coin. Those who do business online prefer to use Facebook as a great opportunity to say a word or two about their production using all possible features Facebook has. As I’ve mentioned above, you could create an “Insider” page and spread the information about your brand, communicate with users and turn them into your customers.

  • Pinterest and Instagram.

I decided to combine these two platforms into one group due to the fact they have almost the same “mission”. The only option of these platforms is sharing images of whatever you want. For you, it could be an awesome opportunity to show product units with a slight description of it. Let customers see what you offer to buy.

  • Twitter

I believe there is no sense in explaining Twitter’s purpose. I only want to encourage you that using this platform is important for your business prosperity. There are numerous articles that cover the topics a kind of “How to Build Business Using Twitter”, “Twitter Marketing” etc. Thus, Twitter is a powerful service for your business.

 

4. Do More Outreach

Outreach is a very important strategy for you as the owner of an eCommerce website. It helps you present your product to the customers in a more personal way. Come into customer’s world and just imagine that you’ve got a well-crafted and personalized as hell email message. You see that the one who sent the message to you had done a detailed investigation about your person. You are really impressed with this message and you can’t refuse the sender to reply or, even, become a customer. What a fantastic story, isn’t it? Well, it is real if you can succeed in the outreach strategy.

I would like to share with you a brief step-by-step process how to do email outreach properly.

  • Find the people you are going to reach out (make sure they are related to your niche).

It is rather easy to do. The only thing you need is the link to your competitor’s material and Ahrefs Site Explorer tool for revealing all backlinks this link has:

 

create a top rate ecommerce website

 

In this example, I decided to represent you how to search backlinks for the musical instruments industry. I chose the very first blog and check out what backlinks the article has. You might be impressed with the number of backlinks (5.29K) but, please, don’t hurry up with the conclusions. You will have to check almost each backlink manually and see whether they are fresh and you are able to get the right contact information of the recipient you’re willing to reach out.

  • Search for personal contacts of the recipients.

This stage of the outreach process is very significant to you. Without a proper email address, you won’t have any chance to reach the person out. I recommend you to use find.that email and voilanorbert tools. Moreover, please, check out person’s social media accounts because people tend to leave their contacts over there.

  • Create personalized email templates.

Don’t be too lazy! Kill your inner sloth and try to find some additional information about the person you’re going to reach out. Mix this information with the main aim of the message, add an outstanding subject line and send it over to the recipient. I give you 90% that you’ll get a positive result.

  • Don’t be afraid of sending follow-up emails.

No worries if the recipient hasn’t replied to you. There are reasons for this. Thus, if you send a follow-up email, you will increase your chances to get the reply you’re waiting for.

Remember that outreach is a great way to boost your eCommerce website and get new customers you deserve. It goes without saying that I gave you just a few core elements of the outreach. However, if you’re interested in more detailed guide, I suggest you check this one.

 

Conclusion

Taking all the aforesaid into consideration, I would like to say that running eCommerce websites and sell your product in a digital world is a meticulous process. Every step and decision must be considered to the last detail. You will have to focus yourself on various aspects of marketing and study the ways how to use them wisely.

I won’t state that the lessons you’ve learned from this guide will push up sales over 100%. But I am quite sure that your eCommerce website will succeed in terms of internet marketing.

If you have some pieces of advice or thoughts you would like to share, please, feel free to use the comment section.

Don’t forget to share it via your social media accounts!

4 steps to create a first-rate ecommerce website

The post 4 Steps to Create a First-Rate eCommerce Website appeared first on GetResponse Blog – Online Marketing Tips.