You didn’t think content marketing was just for B2B companies, did you? Supplementing your eCommerce marketing efforts with high-quality content that’s valuable to your target market is a great approach. So let’s talk about how you can get started with eCommerce content marketing.
The Benefits of eCommerce Content Marketing
If you’re still not sold on the idea, here are just a few of the benefits you’ll see as you begin to promote your eCommerce store with content marketing.
- It’s good for SEO. It’s easier to rank blog posts than product detail pages. You can link to relevant product detail pages to improve their rankings.
- It builds brand awareness. If you write about topics that are relevant to your target market, potential customers will begin to see your name more often.
- It builds your credibility. Ifyou write content that meets the needs of your target market, potential customers will see you as an authority in the space.
- It supplements your social media strategy. You can develop content, especially for social media, or repurpose blog content.
How to Develop Your Content Marketing Strategy
Here are the basic steps you’ll need to take to prepare an eCommerce content marketing strategy. It’s a complex subject, but these fundamentals will get you most of the way there.
1. Choose Your Topic(s)
You should choose one to three topics to cover on a regular basis. The topics should be relevant to your target market and as closely related to your products as possible. Home Depot is a perfect example produces DIY-related content. When someone wants to know how to build a deck, one of Home Depot’s articles will likely show up, and readers will be more likely to buy the tools and materials they need from Home Depot.
Beauty brand Lush is another good example. The company produces makeup tutorials, which show off their products while also helping people in their target market solve a problem.
Patagonia takes another approach. The company produces conservation-related content. Unlike Home Depot and Lush, Patagonia is creating top of funnel content. Just because someone is interested in conservation, doesn’t mean they’re in the market for a new jacket. But it builds brand awareness and establishes Patagonia as a brand that cares about the environment.
2. Choose Your Format(s)
When someone says “content marketing,” most people think of written content. But that’s only one possibility. Here’s a more complete list:
- Text-based content: blog posts, ebooks, white papers, and case studies.
- Video-based content: webinars and online courses
- Tool-based content: free or freemium apps or online calculators
- Graphic content: infographics, memes, GIFs
Which type or types of eCommerce content you choose will depend on your industry and your market. What format do your customers and potential customers prefer to interact with?
You’ll also need to consider your resources. If you don’t have the time or team members to consistently promote great video content, a podcast might be a better idea. Or you might decide to do a one-off campaign of evergreen video content.
3. Develop Your Promotional Strategy
Next, you need to decide where and how you’re going to promote your content. Here are some options:
- Organic search. With good SEO, you can drive free traffic to your content.
- Paid search. Drive paid traffic to your content while you wait for it to rank organically.
- Organic social. You can begin to post your content on social media networks.
- Paid social. Use social media advertising to grow your following if you want to get faster results or you don’t already have followers.
- Native advertising. Native ads appear as though they’re just content on a website. They can be a cost-effective way to get eyeballs on your articles.
- Video advertising. If you produce video content, you can use video ads to drive people to your channel to grow your following.
4. Generate and Nurture Leads
eCommerce content marketing is an effective B2C lead generation tactic. You can make some content freely available (for example, a blog on how to tie a tie) and then require an email address to receive further content (for example, an ebook on how to match ties to suits and shirts).
Or you can use website visitor identification to collect up to 40 percent of your anonymous website visitors’ email addresses without requiring them to fill out a form.
Then, you can use remarketing ads and email retargeting to provide further valuable content and move your leads through the funnel.
5. Test, Test, Test
Once you begin to release your content into the wild, you’ll want to track its performance. You’ll need a good website visitor tracking tool for that, but there are plenty of free options.
To get started, we recommend Microsoft Clarity for heat mapping and session recording and Google Analytics (GA) for everything else.
Clarity and GA are free, but there are also eCommerce analytics tools if you want to go with something designed specifically for eCommerce. Some of those tools have free plans as well.
If it seems like one format or topic isn’t working well after a few months, try something else. But make sure you give it enough time to truly see if it’s working.
Supplement Your eCommerce Strategy with Content Marketing
There you have it. Those four steps will set you on the road to revenue with eCommerce content marketing. It can really be as simple as choosing a topic, a format, and a promotional channel. The key to success is to track your results and test new topics and formats to find what resonates best with your target audience.