Here at ExecSC we are proud to be helping e-commerce store Modern Mint with their online presence. We have helped this company build a huge blog - and in turn this has led to increased online sales. The article below summarises how we have helped them and some top tips for blogging if you too have an online store.
Why you should blog, especially if you have an online store.
People blog to get more traffic to their website, and if you sell online, it helps build up an email list to market new products to.
An online presence helps people make sense of what you do
When people meet you at a fair or market, spend time with your products and personality, they are quicker to get what you do.
By starting this conversation, face to face, you are more likely to make a sale, or get someone signed up to your email list, or get sales in the future. Which is exactly what we want.
Noting this, we can have a better understanding of how to get customers online - we just mimic the behaviour we have at fairs!
Don't think about potential customers as searching for you online. Think of them as 'making sense of you' online.
At a fair, you have a beautiful stand. Online you have a beautiful website.
At a fair you have signs that tell people what they are looking at. Online your descriptions are clear about what you do and who it is for.
At fairs you keep turning up, show after show, year after year, chatting to people and having conversations, so that people recognise you and think - these guys are still going, they must be doing something right. Online - you have a blog to do the same thing.
Which means a blog is for?
- Turning up regularly.
- Starting conversations.
- Making sense of what you do.
Luckily, Google rewards people who provide fresh content on a regular basis. Blog once a week and in one year you will have given yourself 52 chances of being found online.
If you can make those 52 blogs useful, then you move another step ahead - because people might share them, or link to them (improving your page ranking as well as your website ranking) or get in touch with you about them. You are starting conversations.
To help people make sense of what you do, have an opinion. We make these soaps because.... it is not those soaps. Drip drip drip, 52 blogs a year, you find and clarify your voice. It becomes unique, and search engines like that.
What about optimising our SEO? What about meta keyword tags?
If you search google for 'why eat organic local food' it ranks 4th or 5th on page 1. If you search 'why eat local organic food' you won't find the blog. One small change in search term, and it misses out.
It is not optimised - even the permalink has this in it '-2'. It is a messy, long post, lots of links away from the page, no proper heading sizes, the readability is poor in places and I set no focus keyword....
But if you google cut flower business or any term with those words in, look what comes up top? (Or at least top of the search, below the 4 adverts Google now seems to place at the top of every page!)
If your content is useful, interesting and idiosyncratic, and your blog is regular, you will get a boost in search engine rankings.
How can we make this work for you?
Write a blog every week. (Turn up regularly!)
25 of these can be useful, unique, interesting - helping people 'make sense' of what you do and starting conversations.
The other 27 posts can be a mixture of news (we will be at this event next weekend), offers (buy before Friday and receive a hand cream free), testimonials (Janine loves our soap. Here is the note she sent us to say thank you...) and celebrations of holidays (Merry Christmas everyone! Happy Father's Day!)
This second set are there to keep your website updated and take the pressure off writing something interesting every week.
Of the 25 blog posts, you will find 2 or 3 will become most popular, a sort of evergreen material that constantly gets landed on from search engines.
After a year, when you have this information about the most popular topics, you can then build new blog posts around those themes. This is what your audience wants to know about, so expand on it. It is another way to start conversations....
What about getting sign-ups?
At the end of every blog post, you ask them to sign-up, or visit a product, or read another blog. You keep the conversation moving, drip drip drip your name into their heads... and you will get the sign-ups because they trust you and have heard your voice. It just takes time....
How can Exec SC help your online traffic?
We know that posting regularly and writing in a clear and unique voice helps your website.
We know that after a year you will have a better idea which content your followers want to know more about.