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How to Drive Traffic to your Shopify Store
Nov 7, 2019

How to Drive Traffic to your Shopify Store

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Estimated reading time: 8 minutes.

Marketing tips and tricks on how to drive traffic and sales

You’ve launched your Shopify store – congratulations! Now that you’ve set up shop and you’re ready to market your products to the world, the next step is to think about how you’re going to drive traffic to your online store. You need customers!

As an e-commerce merchant, attracting new customers and driving organic or paid traffic to your website is key to all parts of your business; brand awareness, customer engagement, sales and return purchases. Without driving traffic to your store, customers don’t know where or how to purchase your products, resulting in potential customer leads leaving or losing interest – without having made a purchase.

There are several clever ways you can drive traffic to your Shopify store. This guide will take you through top marketing tips and tricks for driving traffic - all with the aim of getting customers to your store and adding products to their shopping cart.

SEO and keyword targeting

As an online retailer, the most inexpensive tool you have in your marketing belt is SEO optimisation. Simply put, search engine optimisation is the process of making your online store discoverable – and popular – on search engines. To do this, you need to understand what your audience is searching for. 

People use keywords and phrases (also referred to as search terms) to find the information they’re looking for. Without them, the internet would be a black hole of information. By making sure your website, and any content you publish, uses the same keywords as what your audience is searching, you have a much better chance of driving organic traffic to your store.

First, you need to research what the high-performing keywords are, relevant to your store type and niche market. Once you’ve made a list of these keywords and phrases, start adding them throughout the pages of your website.

You can add them in:

  • Product titles and descriptions
  • Page headlines and sub-headers
  • Alt tags on product images

This will significantly increase the chances of your store being found by customers looking for products like yours – and ultimately work to drive traffic to your store.

Pay-per-click advertising

SEM and Intent keywords

There are some keywords which are so popular, it can be hard to get the results you desire – even if your store is perfectly optimised. This is where paid-per-click (PPC) advertising can be a good option – if you have the budget.

SEM – or search engine marketing – often refers to a paid campaign targeting specific keywords, like Google Ads. But it’s here you need to pay careful attention to the intent behind each keyword. There’s absolutely no point in paying for a keyword if the searches for that term aren’t related to your business. Your content needs to target the right keywords and have the right intent, if you’re to drive good traffic to your store.

Here’s an example: if you sell horse-riding gear, and only optimise your store for the keyword horse-riding, you run the risk of driving the wrong traffic to your website. Instead of driving customers interested in horse-riding gear, you’ll attract customers who might be looking for horse-riding in their local area.

Social pay-per-click

Social PPC pays for placement on social media channels like Facebook and Instagram. Because of the way social media is used, these ads can be targeted in a different way to search advertising using demographics, interest in topics or similar brands. These ads display in newsfeeds, stories and timelines – when and by who you choose rather than by search term.

The great thing about social PPC is the level of engagement it creates. It’s effective at creating brand awareness, but it can also lead to a deeper form of engagement – a like, follow, share, re-pin – all actions that have lasting impressions on the user, as well as their extended audience.

Content marketing

Blocks of content

Headlines and product descriptions aren’t the only place you can add SEO keywords to help attract visitors to your store.

Blocks of content at the bottom of product category or main website pages work well too. The content doesn’t need to be long – only a paragraph or two – but it does need to be search term rich. Use phrases related to your primary keywords that have a high search volume – each word and phrase needs to make a valuable contribution.

E-commerce companies all over the internet are using this tactic to boost organic traffic to their stores - and you could easily do the same. As the search engines start to crawl your website, the ranking of each page will get higher, driving more traffic to your store.

Guest posts and back-links

Search engines also favour those websites that have a good backlink profile. This means that your store, and the content on it, is being linked to by other websites – a good indication it’s a source of useful information that people trust.

The more links pointing to your website, the better. You’ll rank higher, and your pages will be served more often to those searching for products like yours – seamlessly increasing organic traffic to your store.

The most efficient way to build your backlink profile is to write a guest blog post for another blog – or influencer - within your niche. For example, if you sell baby products, type ‘write for us + baby products’ into Google, and you’ll be shown a list of websites in search of blog contributors in that niche market. Reach out to as many as you can manage and get writing. In your author bio at the bottom of the blog post, include a backlink to your Shopify store.

Integrating your social media

Social media is a powerful tool, so be sure to use it to your advantage. More than just having an account and posting regularly, research how best to use the platforms you’re on - and how to integrate them with your store.

By connecting your Shopify store directly with your social media, you’re streamlining the purchasing process. There are certain platforms, like Instagram with shoppable posts, where users are more likely to spend more. Users can tap an image for product details, and link directly through to the product page on your website for a seamless and quick purchase.

Don’t forget to integrate your Facebook page as well. Convert your business page to a Facebook Store to make it even easier to connect your customers with Shopify. An online retail store is no different from a brick-and-mortar – the easier it is for your customers to visit your store, the more traffic you’ll get.

Video is king

As digital marketing evolves, it’s quickly becoming clear how effective video is for driving traffic to online stores.

An overwhelming amount of research and statistics prove the validity of this statement; 52% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with best ROI, 64% of consumers make a purchase after watching branded social videos, and people will spend 88% more time on a website with video content.

It’s evident the number of social media users who consume video content is high - so use this knowledge to your advantage. Use video to tell your story, build your brand, and drive traffic from your social media channels to your online store.

Work with an influencer

Getting in front of your audience can be tough, especially if you’re new to market or the niche you’re in is busy. If this is the case, working with an influencer might be a good alternative.

You’ll want to approach an influencer who has a relatively high number of followers. More importantly, the followers need to be engaged. Influencer marketing can do wonders for brand awareness and website traffic if you can collaborate with the right influencer – with the right audience. 

You can approach an influencer directly, or you might have more luck going through an online marketplace like Famebit that connects businesses with influencers.

Multi-channel selling

Another great way to drive traffic to your Shopify store is to consider a multi-channel approach. It’s a cost-effective strategy for enhancing product visibility, attracting new customers and increasing your revenue growth.

No one platform is the same, so with your products available over a variety of sales channels – Amazon, Etsy, eBay – you can reach more people who need your products, and quickly multiply the channels driving traffic to your store. Start by focusing on marketplaces you know already have large numbers of visitors.

Local marketing

While there’s no denying online shopping is growing exponentially year on year, household buyers still respond well to traditional, offline forms of advertising. Local marketing is often overlooked by e-commerce businesses, but it can be super beneficial for several reasons.

Some customers prefer to buy locally, so if you know you have a large customer group in a particular area (use tracking cookies) you could consider attending a local market with your products to drive demand online, place an ad in the local or national newspaper, or do a letterbox drop offering a discount for those who live in the neighbourhood.

Get more traffic, convert more sales

The more traffic you can drive to your website, the more sales you will make. The strategies covered in this article are used by marketing professionals all over the world, but while these tactics are good on their own, they’re a lot more effective when used together.

Build a marketing strategy that utilises a few different methods – preferably ones that complement each other. Optimise every part of your website with high-volume keywords and phrases, write guest posts with backlinks for relevant blogs and influencers in your niche, sell your products on multiple channels, integrate your social media and use video. If you have budget to play with, consider working with an influencer or pay-per-click advertising.

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