From marketing to existing customers to acquiring new ones, let’s look at eight tactics you can use to drive traffic to your new online store.
1. Utilize (and keep building) your email list.
Even in a brick-and-mortar store, it’s important to have a strong email marketing strategy. Collect as many email addresses as you can — customers, prospective customers, people interested in your events, etc. When you launch, you’ll be able to send an email to all of those people letting them know that they can visit your store online.
This can be a good time to consider offering a promotion to those on your email list, or even a referral discount to encourage customers to share your site with friends and family.
Email continues to be one of the most effective marketing tools in the ecommerce toolbox, so make sure that you keep collecting email addresses on your site. Some brands use pop-up boxes to prompt users to enter their email addresses in return for a small promotion, like 15% off their first purchase, or free shipping.
You should also make sure you’re keeping a steady flow of communication with your email list. Develop a regular email cadence and include promotions, new content, product launches and other news that can encourage customers to visit your site.
2. Boost your organic social presence.
With your online business, you’ll want to take every opportunity to boost your digital engagement. One of the easiest and most effective ways is to give a little extra love to your social media channels, and make sure they’re stocked with vibrant images and engaging videos.
If you already have a pretty solid presence on social channels with a core audience, this is the time to build on that. Increase your post frequency and invest a bit more time in creating rich visual content and short, engaging videos. Boosting engagement with your followers increases the chance for brand awareness with their followers. Encourage sharing, and incorporate user-generated content.
If your social media presence needs some work, now’s the time.You don’t have to be everywhere. Make sure you have a presence on the channels that are appropriate for your target customer and put your energy there.
3. Optimize your site for SEO.
Search engine optimization (SEO) encompasses many things, and trying to optimize can lead you down a deep, deep rabbit hole. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you’re just starting out.
Put yourself in the mind of your user — how does your target audience talk about your products, and what do they want to know?
Pay attention to on-page content. On-page content refers to product titles and descriptions, images, any blogs or other content you might have, etc. You want to make sure that content naturally uses language your customers might use when searching for related products and answers their questions.
Meta tags are important as well. Title tags, which are like headlines for a search engine, help the search engine figure out what each page is about. Each page of your website should have its own unique title tag. Meta descriptions are short summaries of each page. When your site shows up on a search engine results page, users will see your title tag and meta description before anything else.
4. Create interesting, useful content.
Creating great content for people looking to buy your product is a great way to bring traffic to your site and provide helpful information that positions your brand as an authoritative voice in your vertical.
5. Try out Google Ads.
Using Google Ads for search engine marketing gives you an opportunity to bid on keywords, so that you can show up first in search engine results pages. Getting the coveted “top spot” is what search engine optimization is all about — but, a head’s up, Google Ads will still show up first.
Search engine marketing is a great way to advertise your website because it doesn’t require any design and can be very effective in driving new traffic. You’ll get results in real time and can adjust your campaign strategies based on performance as you go.
6. Advertise on social platforms.
Social media is a great place to focus ad spending because you know people are spending time on social platforms. If you were going to buy a billboard, which road would be the best one to put it on? Think about social media advertising like this, too.
If your audience spends a lot of time on Instagram but not Twitter, you’ll want to focus your spending on Instagram.
You can use photos and videos in your ads, but start small. A photo ad can be a great way to get your product in front of new people. Try simple, engaging imagery of your product in use and adjust your tactics based on how well it performs in the first couple of weeks.
7. Partner with complementary brands.
Create partnerships with other brands to cross-promote. Find a business with a similar target audience, but a complementary product. That way, each business partner is reaching a whole new yet relevant audience. For example, if you sell outdoor gear, a relevant partnership could be with a brand focused on hiking shoes.
Actual methods for cross-promotion can vary, and there are ways you can do it at every level of the funnel. Top-of-funnel activities can be things like co-sponsoring an outdoor living podcast or blog. Depending on the time of year, a co-branded gift guide could be a great initiative. Or you could even do down-funnel promotions like offering a discount on one product with the purchase of another.
8. Participate in online events and discussions.
As online communication and events surge, there may be opportunities to increase brand awareness with target communities. Leverage your expertise by participating in webinars or virtual conferences to get the word out about your business.
9. Consider using influencer marketing.
Influencers are people who have large online audiences, and have the power to “influence” that audience’s purchasing behavior.
Working with the right influencer can get your product in front of a huge number of potential customers, increasing your brand awareness. To make the best use of influencer marketing, make sure your targeted influencer’s following aligns with your target audience, and that their values align with your brand.
Common influencer marketingtactics include an influencer writing a blog post about your product, posting social media content reviewing or demonstrating your product or talking about your product at an event.
10. Leverage your offline store(s).
If your brick-and-mortar business has great name recognition and a loyal following, you can use your in-person time with your customers to help drive traffic to your new online store.
For example, you can use non-intrusive ways to help customers stay engaged with your brand even after they leave the store. This can include asking them to sign up for your email list at checkout, letting them know about our customer loyalty program if you have one and drawing attention to promotions you’re running on social media that they might want to follow.
Consider offering flyers with promotion codes they can share with friends and family who might not live near your physical store. Your in-person customers can be your greatest evangelists and can help spread your message far and wide.
This content was originally published by big commerce