Why Your eCommerce Site Needs a Blog and How to Get Started
We’ve all heard about the benefits of blogging, and how it can impact your SEO. Unfortunately, many of those articles and guides are generalized, written to be applicable to all industries. Blogging has proliferated in the B2B realm, but is it actually applicable for eCommerce stores as well?
The short answer is yes. The long answer is more complex: an eCommerce blog can be immensely successful if you get the nuances right.
How you get there can be complex. So let’s review the general importance of blogging for eCommerce, before providing some tips and topics for your blog that can get you started in reaping those rewards for your own online store.
4 Business Benefits of Starting an eCommerce Blog
Beyond the general benefits of business blogging, eCommerce stores, in particular, can benefit from this marketing tactic in four distinct ways:
- Provide answers for potential customers. Consumers buy products because they solve a distinct pain point. Before they buy, though, they likely turn to search engines to look for solutions. A well-written blog that provides high-value content on relevant keywords can go a long way towards making sure that when your audience does their research, they come across your website.
- Increase your online store site traffic. Research has shown that companies with an active blog receive 55% more web traffic, 97% more inbound links, and 434% more indexed pages. For eCommerce stores, which rely heavily on website traffic for revenue generation, blogging can have a significant impact on filling the top of the sales funnel.
- Build trust in your eCommerce brand. Perhaps surprisingly, studies have shown blogging to be the #1 brand-building activity among digital marketing channels. That’s because, in addition to driving initial traffic, a great blog causes your audience to come back over time, significantly increasing brand loyalty in the process. The trust you can build with high-value content is immense.
- Leverage your content on multiple channels. Finally, don’t think of your blog as an isolated marketing channel. Instead, it can turn into a content hub that you can leverage in all of your other efforts. Feature blog posts on social media, in email newsletters, and more to increase the mileage of your content while engaging your potential and current customers.
Of course, these benefits are only hypothetical. A poorly written or managed eCommerce blog can waste your resources and even harm your reputation. Getting your blog right is absolutely vital.
5 Important Tips to Remember When Blogging on Shopify for eCommerce
Your blog is your opportunity to draw in your audience through value-adding content, sharing company news, and more. Use these tips to build your own content hub for your online store.
1. Build a Database of Potential Topics
Finding the right blog topics for your online store is crucial. A database of potential topics can drive your keyword research and makes content creation easier. Topics relevant for eCommerce blogging include:
- Industry trends related to the products you sell, like fashion trends for a given season.
- Product tutorials and hacks, especially when selling electronics and other complex products.
- New product announcements with behind-the-scenes content, like the release of a new product line.
- Curating customer reviews and case studies that show authentic social proof of your products.
- Shopping guides, especially when you can relate your products to specific events or holiday seasons.
- Company news items that allow customers to get to know you beyond your products, increasing credibility.
Each of these categories can be a potential treasure trove of topics. You can also check out other eCommerce stores for ideas on the type of content that seems to perform well for them.
2. Create a Content Calendar
A long list of topics alone won’t lead to a successful blog. The next step is organizing these topics into a content calendar that spreads them out naturally, creating a regular cadence of valuable blog posts that your audience can seek out and engage with.
Blog and editorial calendar templates are easily available from a number of sources, which means you don’t need to start from scratch. Filling it out, and keeping it up to date, can go a long way toward turning your blog into a consistent, long-term marketing asset rather than a hot-burning fad that loses effectiveness as soon as the initial enthusiasm for writing it fades.
3. Focus on Value Over Promotion
Business blogs only work if they are not obvious promotional tools that offer little actual value to your audience. To reach that goal, focus your topics and posts on needs and pain points identified as part of your audience research, which are often reflected in or related to the keywords identified in your SEO keyword research.
Of course, some of the topics outlined above are naturally about your store and products rather than brand-agnostic audience needs. But you can still add audience value by ensuring a focus on how the products can help them, rather than simply listing their features.
4. Promote Your Blog on Established Channels
While blogging is an essential SEO tool, hoping that your audience will find your posts through a Google search is far from your only option to get traffic. In fact, the best blogs are naturally integrated into the larger promotional ecosystem of your online store.
For example, each new blog post offers the opportunity to share nuggets, quotes, and facts on social media. The full post can be featured in a newsletter or, in the case of product guides and tutorials, even featured on product pages. Increased audience awareness of new posts naturally leads to more views, engagement, and ultimately a more successful blog.
5. Maintain and Optimize Your Blog Over Time
Finally, it’s crucial not to think of a blog as a one-time initiative. Once established, it requires consistent care to maximize its potential. That includes not just regular brainstorming sessions on new topics, but also managing reader comments (if enabled) and ongoing optimization.
That optimization, in turn, should include regular reviews of how each blog post is performing in terms of views, engagement, and conversions. These reviews can lead to conclusions on what types of topics perform best, which deserve further promotions, and where you can tweak your strategy.
Getting Started in Supporting Your eCommerce Marketing Through Blogging
Done right, blogging can go a long way towards elevating your eCommerce brand and store. That makes finding a reliable partner who can help you build that blog, and integrate it into both your website and marketing strategy, absolutely crucial. Future Holidays has extensive experience in the eCommerce space, and we’d love to help in building that successful blog presence. Contact us to get started.