1. Allows you to get in touch with your target audience
Typically, ecommerce blogging does not involve direct marketing and promotion of your services or products. But, this does not automatically mean you are not using it as a form of marketing. It is just that – you are doing it in a more subtle way.
In your blog, you discuss the industry you fall under and the services you can offer as well as resolving any personal challenges your customers currently have. This is a form of introducing yourself to your clients and a way to entice them into buying or hiring your services.
2. Gives you a voice so you can be heard
If you have an ecommerce blog and you post regularly to it, you are developing a voice so you can be heard. It is important that this voice complements the voice you use for your business beyond the Internet. A great way to do this is to put yourself on the shoes of your customers.
If you’re in your customer’s point of view, there are things you’d want and wouldn’t want. You don’t want to walk into a store and be greeted by “products, descriptions and buying options” as if you’re being forced on a fast lane.
As a customer, you’d want to be greeted properly, be introduced to products at your own pace and be at ease that you can make your decisions in buying.
An ecommerce blog allows you to do this by giving your customers information about you and it will build a sense of connection to you.
3. A way to optimize
SEO or search engine optimization is not really everyone’s forte and definitely not one that you’d expect when you’re blogging.
However, setting up an ecommerce blog allows you to optimize your site. Regular blogging can get you ranked high on search engine results pages especially in Google SERPs. It goes without saying that blogging generates positive effects on rankings for many websites not only ecommerce sites.
This does not mean that search engines prefer blogs – they don’t. The reason that it generates this positive effect is the inherent benefits you could get from a blog running on your website. What are these inherent benefits? The first benefit is offering high quality content.
In search engine optimization, the verbiage “content is king” always apply. Search engines like content in general so it does not specifically reward blogs, but any piece of great content. In order for search engines to like content, they must be valuable, relevant and fresh – which means you should regularly update your content.
Another benefit you can get from a blog is generated links. A lot of emphasis in SEO is given to the links that other sites bring to you. The more high quality sites bring links to you the more you are viewed as a credible source on that topic. If you have a good blog, other sites would want to link to you. Blogging creates your own community and with it you can develop relationships.
If you support other blogs, they would want to return the same support to you.
Furthermore, blogging significantly increases traffic because of three reasons: your site is new, currently up to date and more importantly real – not some automatic blog bot. Also, the more content you post, the more relevant keywords you can use.
4. Gives various entry points to your ecommerce site
Obviously, the more content you post – the more pages you will have in your site. If you have more pages in your site, the more entry points you can offer to your visitors that will ultimately (or hopefully) lead to your product pages. As an ecommerce site owner, you want to tap as many people as you can into your website. Do not limit yourself to your product pages as this can impede site entry.
5. Gives you an opportunity to create viral marketing
There are social media sites such as Digg.com and StumbleUpon.com that allow you to submit articles. If you create fresh, highly valuable, interesting and unique articles, you are actually putting yourself out in front of other users. There are also cases when these sites’ users rate and share your articles to their own personal community. When this happens, you have the opportunity to get exposed to hundreds and thousands of readers on a daily basis.
6. Allows you to be labeled as an industry expert
All the content you post on your blog will show your visitors your expertise in the industry that you’re currently operating under. Sharing high quality and relevant posts with your readers can keep you at the top of your industry. When people see you as an expert on a given field, you will become and be known as their primary resource of highly valuable information.
This is because readers know that you can give them information on what new techniques or tools to use and where they can get other information that will help them conquer challenges and advance in their own company.
The key thing here is possessing knowledge that others don’t. You cannot become an expert if you don’t have any prior knowledge on that particular subject. This is the best advantage of having a blog. You can create posts of highly valuable information. You need to do a thorough research on that particular topic.
Anyone can research – we all agree to that, but if you can already provide your readers with the information they needed – there is no need for them to bother. They would only waste time browsing online when they can already get the same information from you.
Nonetheless, you have to be careful on what you post. People have to read your blog otherwise it would become useless. And, the only way for them to read your blog is to make sure that visitors can get information from you. When people view you as an expert, you will be recognized and get yourself established in the industry you fall under.
In addition, the level of trust that people can give you through your blog is exceptionally high.
7. Creates a community for you
One of the best things that ecommerce blogging can give you is active collaboration, communication and a sense of sharing especially in the comment section. If you are an active blogger for your ecommerce business, you will have visitors who will be asking questions and answering other users questions. If you take the time to facilitate these active comments it will help you create a community among your readers.
When you already have a community, you will learn a lot from this audience and eventually this will give you an edge in the competition. By learning about the interests of your target audience, you will know what they want and their interest. You might want to build a product line that best suits this audience. Instead of having random products, choosing specific ones that you know your visitors would like can give you higher chance of getting sales.
8. Gives you a sense of connection and sharing to people
Blogging means you have something to tell people and in the same manner you are allowing them to share things with you. An ecommerce business with an active blog cannot underestimate how powerful it is to connect with others. Instead of the old and boring ways of introducing products, for example, having a product page with lots of images of products, you can now introduce these products through your blog.
Blogging with allow you to become an interactive and dynamic expert in the field who knows how to inject humor and personality rather than just another entrepreneur who knows how to do business but fails miserably at making connections and sharing.
In other words, your blog gives you individuality and personality. It makes you approachable and friendly.
9. Allows you to entice readers some mor
When you blog and you slowly introduce your products to your readers, you are actually enticing them. It is like a call to action each and every time. A reader can be pushed to click a link if they needed more information about a product or if your post about a particular product has peeked their interest.
There is no need for you to blog about a specific product but you can blog about related stories, the latest trends, frequently asked questions, reviews and testimonials and just about anything that can bring you closer to the needs of your potential customer.
Think about each post as an opportunity to sell.
10. Gives customers more entryways to buy something
As mentioned previously, a blog allows you more portals of entry to your ecommerce website. In the same manner, it allows your existing customers more entryways to buy something from you. Existing customers would want to know more before they actually buy something. They are not going to use your blog traditionally like your visitors or readers. They want information and you are going to give that to them.
With visitors or readers, they are using your blog as a point of entry while existing buyers don’t have to. They know where to find your ecommerce website and your product page. They know what products they will see when they enter your site. What they want to know is information and this is what blogging can do for you.
How to Get Started with Your Ecommerce Blog
There may be times when you’ll get discouraged about ecommerce blogging because you’re not a great writer or you just don’t have the time to blog.
At this point, you already know how important ecommerce blogging is for your business growth. If you can devote a fraction of your time to social media networks and maintaining them, surely you have the time to write at least one valuable piece each week.
There is no reason to worry if you’re not a good writer. Ecommerce blogging is like an extension of your product description – only this time you can put in other details. Your posts can be diverse, as we have previously mentioned. It can be an answer to a frequently asked question or simply an ongoing trend that you want to discuss. The point is you just have to make that post.
You do not have to blog everyday. Making one post for each week is fine just as long as you provide valuable and interesting topics each time.
So, how do you get started with your ecommerce blog?
Founding Story. You can start by the history of your ecommerce business including how it came about, the vision and the current progress you’re making. It doesn’t have to be in detail. As mentioned, your content can be short but complete and concise so your readers will know who you are.
Products. What’s the story behind your product? How did you choose them? Where do they come from? You can also include what special features the customers can get and how the products are made. The possibilities are endless.
You can even write product reviews, which will give your potential buyers an in-depth knowledge or information on products they have interest on. The product reviews must have three important things: product description, testing process and advantages/disadvantages.
The key thing to bear in mind is – be objective. You don’t want to create bias just because you’re selling the product. Remember, the final decision will always be from your customer. You are just there to give them your objective opinion without compromising your sales funnel.
How-To Tutorials. Blogging allows you to give something of value to your readers and creating a how-to tutorial is a great idea. Again, you just have to be concise – a step by step guide is more than enough. This does not require a great deal of writing. Use bullet points if you have to.
You can also write about the tips in using your product or a related product. This type of content is particularly liked because it offers authentic and substantive information to your readers. Often, people look for how-to articles because it gives them a direct and concise explanation of how a product works.
Make announcements or updates. Think of blogging as a form of letting your customers know what is currently happening in your ecommerce business. You can make announcements in a form of news or if you’ve launched a new product.
Events. If you are active and participate in related events, you can also write a post about it. Write about what this event can do and why do you want to participate in it.
Advice. You don’t have to limit yourself to your own product lines. You can give advice to your readers about other things just as long as they are related or complementary to yours.
Trends. People love reading about trends and other industry developments.
List-typeof posts. People love scanning lists because they are easy to read and can quickly put any reader into action. The topics may include myths about a certain product, best practices and useful tools.
Personal opinion. Your post may be about your own opinion about a controversial topic involving your products or related products. It is often a great way to get your visitors engaged. You can find a topic related to your products that you’re passionate about and state your case.
Demonstrate leadership. Many people want to do business only with those they trust. An advantage of blogging is that you can write about anything that will demonstrate this leadership – your knowledge superiority and your humble acceptance that your readers may know something that you don’t but this does not make you any less than an expert.
Answers to frequently asked questions. All customers have specific questions in their mind. A good way to answer this is to provide them through your blog. It can be one question at a time or a list of frequently asked questions if you find it easier. If you’ve recently answered an inquiry sent by a customer in your email, you can turn that into a blog post.
Now that you know how important ecommerce blogging is and how to get started. There is no time to waste!
About Tariehk Geter – Tariehk Geter is the Director of Marketing at OSI Affiliate Software and he loves to share strategies that help businesses sell more. Follow him on Twitter and Google+
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