More people are now buying online than ever before – in 2019, nearly 2 billion people will shop online. If you own an ecommerce website, you likely want to capture your share of this growing market. Here’s how.
In the world of internet marketing, the first step is driving visitors (potential shoppers) to your website. All other things being equal, the more the traffic, the more money you are bound to make in sales.
Here are 25 proven ways you can get more traffic to your e-commerce store…
1. Utilize the power of referral marketing
You can easily get in new visitors to your e-commerce store by adopting a referrer program. Encourage your existing customers to invite their friends, neighbors, and family to your store in exchange for a reward. These incentives might be a free gift, store credits, and/or free shipment of their next order when they refer a specific number of persons through their unique referral link.
2. Publish kick-ass content
Right now, there are customers online who are looking for helpful information in your industry. Take advantage of this to reach more prospective customers. You can drive a ton of traffic to your retail store by consistently publishing valuable content related to your business. This technique can result in reliable organic traffic that is a consistent source of new visitors from search engines, social media sites, and other channels.
3. Use social media
Most internet users have one or two social media accounts where they communicate with friends and family, including sharing content, products, and recommendations. Tap into these sources by having a social media page on social media sites (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.) and encouraging your customers to follow you and share your content. Make sure you’re publishing great content (see above) that your customers will love!
4. Paid search ads
The fastest way you can drive shoppers to your online store is to use paid ads. Google Ads are the most popular, as they place your store atop Google’s search engine result pages. Google Ads can be highly effective when run well, or they can waste a lot of money when configured poorly. Here are a few key tips to get you started:
- Choose your keywords carefully – only target keywords customers would search when they want to buy your products.
- Use restrictive match types – start with exact match.
- Set up conversion tracking – it’s critical that you know which clicks are resulting in sales.
- Start slow – set your budget low to begin with, until you find out what works.
- Get help – if you’re not sure what you’re doing, hire a qualified consultant to help you get started.
5. Take advantage of Google Shopping
Not many people know about this option from the world’s most popular online platform. Google shopping allows ecommerce websites to display product ads (like shown above) right on Google’s search results pages. These are a great way for most ecommerce sites to get started with advertising.
6. Use Pinterest
Pinterest boasts a growing 250 million monthly users, yet many online retailers are yet to discover in Pinterest. Pinterest allows users to search and view photos of products directly on the Pinterest website. A staggering statistic shows that a whopping 85% of users on the platform experiment with the ideas they discover on Pinterest.
7. Go mobile
Records show that 50% of mobile users buy products online via their handheld devices. Getting your store well-optimized or mobile-friendly is a great way to catch more traffic for your online store. To be sure you have your store well optimized, run the website address through the Google Mobile-Friendly Test to get a report like this:
8. Implement Good Search Engine Optimization
Nearly half of online store visitors come from search engines, making it the most important traffic source for most ecommerce sites. Be sure that you have a comprehensive plan for search engine optimization, to ensure your website ranks high on Google and other search engines when customers search for your products. A comprehensive plan will include:
- Technical SEO to ensure your website is easy for search engines to crawl and understand.
- On-page SEO to ensure that your site targets and uses the right keywords.
- Off-page SEO to build your site’s authority and reputation so it can outrank your competitors.
9. Use email marketing
You may have heard it said that “the money in the list”. That mantra is still as effective as ever. Start building an email list if you haven’t already. If you have a list already in place, make good use of it:
- Send promotional emails highlighting your products to your subscribers.
- Send educational emails to help them learn the various ways to use a product.
- Send relevant, interesting emails not directly related to your products (so customers view you as a helpful resource, not just a salesperson).
10. Use guest blog posting
Writing guest posts for a blog where your prospective customers are hanging out can be a great way to get in front of new shoppers and to boost your SEO rankings. Be sure you’re:
- Writing highly valuable content
- Posting on high quality sites with high editorial standards
- Targeting blogs that are relevant to your audience
11. Make good use of influencers
Who do your target customers listen to and follow on social media? Get those people to promote your product!
12. Make it easier to purchase
Most online shoppers are impatient. They’re moving quickly, and if purchasing isn’t simple and easy, they may move on to a different site to purchase from. Be sure your site is easy to use:
- Test the site thoroughly to remove errors and other issues
- Ensure the site loads quickly and works well on all devices
- Make sure the navigation and search features allow customers to quickly find the product they want
- Smooth out the checkout process to make it as fast and easy as possible
13. Use video marketing
About 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every day. Are you capturing your share of that market? Create a channel for your store and post valuable information related to products in your store. Put a link back to your online store in the description where visitors can click back to your website.
14. Offer live chat
Did you know that most customers prefer to communicate via chat or messenger? The reason for this is simple: the speed at which help is rendered compared to when an email is sent. Reports suggest that about 50% of customers are more comfortable and willing to buy from a store where live chat support is provided.
15. Join a community
Nearly every industry has a variety of online communities or groups, and these can be a great way to drive traffic to your website. Be very active in the community and share valuable information. Gradually, members will come to accept you as an authority on the field. This will encourage them to want to know more about your business and subsequently visit your store.
16. Utilize promo offers
People love freebies, discounts, and promos. To get more visitors flocking your website, make strategic use of promos to build excitement in promos that people are willing to take advantage of it. A few examples:
- A free offer for first time purchasers to attract new customers.
- A bulk to discount to encourage customers to buy more.
- A coupon on premium options to encourage customers to buy higher priced options.
17. Create a blog for your store
This one ties back to #2, publishing great content. Blogging is a good way to attract more traffic to your online store with:
- How to’s and tips
- Product demos and reviews
- Industry news
- Fun content
- Useful content that solves problems
- Company and product announcements
- And more
18. Get friends and family to pass on the message
Get free help from your friends and family – encourage them to share products from your store with others in their network. Allow them to freely use photos of your products to reach as many as they can. People who are close to you will be excited to help you out if it only requires sharing interesting photos with their friend list.
19. Post on Reddit
There are a lot of users on Reddit, and it can be a great way to send lots of traffic to your website. A few tips to get you started:
- Find specific subreddits related to your industry and post to them to drive traffic to your retail store.
- Don’t be promotional. Reddit users hate self-promotion. Instead just post useful content from your blog, etc.
- Become an active user of the subreddit and learn the rules before you post your own content.
20. Contact bloggers to review your products
You can reach out to vloggers, bloggers, and other online influencers and ask them to post a review of your product. Search on Google and find those that will be interested in your products. You can send them a free sample to start with, but most will also charge a fee to write and post a review.
21. Get in touch with the press
Traditional media (newspapers, TV, etc.) can drive a ton of traffic if well utilized. Focus on local or community newspapers at first before launching on bigger newspapers. The key is to identify a story their readers will want to hear about. How you tell your story matters. Find a professional to help you out if you are not sure how. Be precise with your pitch with the press – much better to target a few relevant outlets than blast to 1,000 broad outlets.
22. Make use of Instagram influencers
Instagram is growing at an exponential rate and statistics show that Instagram offers 25% more brand engagement than other social platforms on the internet. If you can identify relevant influencers on this platform, it’s a great way to drive additional traffic to your online store.
23. Write a round-up post
Writing a blog posts that quotes a bunch of bloggers / influencers in your space is a great way you can use to drive more traffic to your online store. Sometimes called ego-bait, you are actually focusing on these people to reach their followers. You are sort of featuring them in your post. For instance, writing an article such as “the 10 most influential businessmen in the region you should be following”. Then alert the 10 people you featured – if you’re lucky, they’ll share your article via social media!
24. Use Facebook groups
Find Facebook groups that relate to your niche and become an active, contributing member. Then you’ll have a chance to share your blog posts, drive more traffic to your online store, and maybe even showcase your products.
25. Make use of Quora
Quora is a question and answer platform, and about 6, 000 questions are created on the platform daily. Find questions that relate to your brand or products – give highly relevant answers and provide a small link back to your website as a source.
There are numerous ways you can drive more traffic to your e-commerce store. This list isn’t exhaustive. There are many others. What are your favorites?