You’ve probably already heard your colleague or a friend brag about launching an e-commerce store of their own. Or, perhaps you’re that colleague who runs his own store as a side gig.
In either case, the concept isn’t new and it’s here to stay.
The popularity of this phenomenon isn’t surprising – e-retail revenues are, in fact, projected to reach 5.4 trillion US dollars in the next year.
With many more people preferring online shopping over the in-store one, it just makes sense for everyone and their dog to test the waters while they’re still somewhat fresh.
But here’s the caveat: old marketing tricks don’t cut it anymore. You need to come up with promotional strategies that are aligned with the typical tech-savvy consumer of today and keep him glued to your e-commerce store until he makes the purchase.
The selling platform that the majority choose to start their online store is WooCommerce. The current market share for this WordPress plugin sits at 29%, which is 3% higher than in 2020.
Overpowering Shopify and Magenta, it’s gained the trust of thousands of sellers who appreciate having a no-frills, easy-to-customize platform that doesn’t require any prior knowledge of building websites.
This also means that you can put more of your focus on marketing and figure out how to make your WooCommerce store stand out quicker and with fewer restraints.
Once you’ve chosen a well-converting theme for your store and filled it up with products you’re planning on selling, it’s time to apply the best marketing practices and reap the benefits.
Did you know that organic search remains to be one of the most powerful sources of website traffic? It brings an impressive 53% of the traffic – a lot more than what can be generated with paid ads.
This is why investing your time in learning all about on-page and off-page SEO is always a good idea. Even if the results aren’t immediate, you know that in a month or two ‘s time your e-commerce store will be ranking high in Google search.
Below are some of the tips for improving your SEO tactics:
- Fix any errors on your website and make sure that every page of the store has a relevant title, body, meta description, image ALT tag, and URL
Source: Commerce Vision
- Check if your store website loads fast and works well on all devices and browsers
- Consider getting backlinks from other websites to your e-commerce store
Employ Email Marketing And Send Out Weekly Newsletters
Don’t just blindly collect email addresses and store them in an Excel spreadsheet you have no intention of coming back to. Instead, collect them with the objective of reaching out to your fellow prospects and teasing them with weekly newsletters that feature products from your store.
No matter if you decide to use MailChimp, Zoho, or ActiveCampaign, keep in mind that the time and date you send those emails matter.
That is, Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 9-11 AM are considered to be the optimal periods of time for getting a good open rate for your emails while Fridays after 7 PM is the worst time.
You should also use email templates for following up on abandoned carts and asking for feedback after the purchase. This way you’ll ensure no lead is lost and, in case the prospect still can’t be converted into a customer, find out what can be tweaked for the future shoppers to turn into customers.
Don’t get it twisted – blogging isn’t dead. It’s still as relevant as it was a decade ago and, if done correctly, has the potential to bring in plenty of customers. To do so, you should write value-packed posts that resonate with prospective customers that are within the niche of your e-commerce store.
Another option is to hire a ghostwriter who will be able to do all the writing for you so that you can focus on growing the business instead.
Once you decide who will be the main contributor to your store’s blog, you should do competitor research and plan the type of content your readers would enjoy most.
By taking your time and unraveling the best-performing content in the Google search, you’ll be able to not only create a community of loyal customers but also engage with them and increase your conversion rates. It’s a win-win for both sides (i.e. your WooCommerce store and the shopper).
Use Social Media To Your Advantage
Social media this, social media that – you’re probably tired by now of hearing about a new brand going viral because of one Instagram post. You might even think that they got lucky or have unfairly earned their fame.
But this is typically far from the truth. It takes knowing where your target audience spends most of their time and catering to them via a well-defined social media marketing strategy.
As an owner of a WooCommerce store, you’re not banned from expanding the reach of your brand by registering on, say, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. If anything, you’re encouraged to create social media accounts where you would be posting consistently and for the right audience.
These platforms allow business owners to engage with their customers on a more personal level and winning them over as a result. It also gives them an incentive to dig deeper into digital marketing and look into collaborating with online influencers who are notorious for generating a better-than-average ROI.
Invest In Paid Advertisements
Organic marketing is great – it’s free and as effective as ever. But combine it with paid ads, and you’ve got yourself a magic bullet that is bound to shoot better than either of the marketing strategies on its own.
Not convinced? Here’s proof:
- The Google Display Network reaches 90% of users with its ads
- PPC users are twice as likely as organic visitors to make a purchase
- 79% of businesses using paid ads claim that PPC is beneficial for them
As you can tell, it doesn’t hurt to establish a separate budget for paid advertising – it’ll pay off sooner than later.
To decide whether you should go for Facebook or Google ads, consider the type of products your store sells. If it’s a mix of visual products in the beauty and apparel niche, social media ads would do best. Home appliances and tech products, in turn, are likely to do better with Google ads.
Or, if you want to go ‘all in’ and get aggressive with promoting your e-commerce store, try out both options and then stick with the one that yields better results.
Organize Seasonal Giveaways
Everyone loves freebies – this is a fact. So why not use them in promotional campaigns when advertising a new product or an old one that needs better exposure?
Call it a giveaway or a contest – the point is to offer either a hefty discount on the product you’re trying to sell or give it away for free.
You can do this by creating hype around it so that curious customers sign up for your newsletter and become invested in your WooCommerce store. This entails crafting creative social media posts and newsletters with a call-to-action (CTA) that would prompt them to hit that ‘follow’ button or sign up for more updates from your website.
If you want to take it up a notch, setting up a viral giveaway is the way to go. All you need to do is to (1) write a copy for your contest with information about the types of prizes and number of winners, (2) ask participants to share the giveaway on their social media platforms, and (3) allow them to win some extra points by interacting with your store in a few ways.
Partner Up With Bigger Brands In Your Industry
Cross-promotion is oftentimes the most bulletproof method of acquiring new customers that would stick for the long run.
It works so well because by partnering up with brands that complement yours, you’re exposing your store to clients that already have an interest in the niche you specialize in.
Take Apple Watch and Nike. The watch acts as your on-the-go digital buddy that, along with showing you notifications coming on your phone, is also used for tracking your physical activity. This made it a perfect candidate for the partnership with the sports giant Nike that appeals to every fitness enthusiast looking to level up their running game.
The result – a niche product known as Apple Watch Nike with the Nike Run Club app built into it for keeping track of your runs. It has plenty of features including average pace, cadence, and Streaks icons that allow you to customize your running experience so that you don’t lose momentum while training for the next marathon.
Leverage Tiktok By Providing Value-Added Content
It’s true that the platform is still relatively green. But this is exactly why you should jump on this bandwagon before it becomes too mainstream. With over 689 million monthly active users, TikTok offers the brand visibility that would cost a fortune to achieve through any other medium.
Not too bad for a video-sharing social media app that has gained popularity just a few years ago.
Remaining trendy for several years in a row, it hasn’t reached that overly saturated stage just yet. This means that regardless of the type of business (store) you’re running, you can still find your audience by:
- Coming up with high-quality content that resonates with the age group of your customers
- Collaborating with influencers that can help you reach a wider audience
- Taking part in trending hashtag challenges that give you a good exposure
- Advertising (signing up for ads) on the app to drive real business results
You don’t have to dive deep into all of the above – it can be overwhelming. Start by choosing one or two strategies and work on them until you’re happy with the feedback from your followers. Once the workload becomes lighter, you can take on the rest of them too.
Speaking about apps – why not develop your own? Everyone is spending an increasingly large amount of time on their phone these days which has contributed to mobile marketing expected to become a billion-dollar venture in the next couple of years.
You might as well join the statistics and create your own App Store- and Google Play-friendly application that would combine products you’re selling and social media contests aimed at raising awareness about your brand.
When it’s ready to be launched, plan to promote it on your website, social media platforms, and in newsletters that you send out on a weekly basis. You can also ask your business partners to do the same on their digital platforms and hire influencers with a large following to expand the reach of your app for you.
Every marketing strategy that can be used for promoting your website-based store can be also used for advertising your app. Test them out and you’ll be trending on the App Store as an ‘app of the day’ in no time.
To Put It In A Nutshell
The definition of the best marketing practices can seem vague. There’s a lot to consider and a little less to spend on execution. But this shouldn’t scare you away from testing marketing strategies you deem to be the most suitable for your WooCommerce store and sticking with the one that clicks.
While engaging in the process of trial and error, remember to use as many channels to promote your store as possible and use a personalized approach when doing so. This will set you apart from the competition and make it easier to gain the trust of your customers.
And don’t forget to track the performance of your marketing campaigns – this will help you decide what you should put more emphasis on and what can be left behind.
Be patient, always innovate, and do what others won’t. The results won’t leave you waiting.