Online shopping is becoming more and more popular in Australia. According to the NAB Retail Sales Index, online sales increased 12% last year to $19bn. So how can you make sure you’re getting your slice of the pie?

You can have the most desirable product in the world, but if no one is going to your site, it’s not going to sell. And with such a crowded market place, getting cut-through is becoming harder and harder. To complicate the issue, the landscape of eCommerce is an ever-changing one, and a good SEO strategy alone isn’t enough. By understanding how your customers are engaging with brands there are some actions you can implement to influence your traffic numbers.

Content is King

The current digital environment is all about content marketing, and having great content on your website is one of the most important things you need to focus on. It serves a dual purpose – first up, although we aren’t really talking about SEO in this article, it can’t be denied that having quality, informative content (be it blogs, webinars, videos or infographics) with relevant keywords can really push your site up to first page rankings.

Secondly, by providing content that appeals to your market, you’re encouraging them to visit your site and, just as importantly, share that content with other potential customers. Depending on your industry, you can also position yourself as a thought leader, so that people who aren’t currently looking to purchase will start to look to you as an expert, and when they are ready to buy, you’ll be top of mind. Just remember that your content needs to be engaging, dynamic and most importantly, relevant to your audience.

Get social

The key thing to remember when venturing into the world of social media marketing is that it’s a two-way conversation. You can’t just start shouting about your product and asking people to buy it – you need to show your value and develop goodwill. That’s why content marketing and social media go hand in hand – by pushing out great information you engage the interest of your audience, and hopefully get them to share with their networks.

Facebook also gives you the power to really target your advertising to your ideal audience. You can target people based on their location, age, gender, interests, relationship status, education and more. You don’t have to go big with paid advertising straight away, but maybe dip your toe in and test with a small spend and see what happens.

Understand the importance of visuals

We all know how important it is to make your product look good – people who are visually engaged with a product are much more likely to buy. That’s where video can really come into its own, a video demonstration can offer a much deeper perspective of a product than a still image. So consider experimenting by adding some video content to your Facebook posts.

Don’t overlook the power of great still images on other channels though, especially Instagram and Pinterest. Consumers can use visual search that will enable them to look for images of similar products when they click on a picture. And of course you can then direct the viewer directly to your site to buy.

Better yet combine them all – great content with compelling visuals. Facebook offers their Canvas product as an added advertising asset for businesses – enabling better engagement through combining content, still imagery and video. Canvas is all about telling your brand’s story through compelling visuals – higher engagement usually comes from a stronger relationship with your brand’s story and therefore increases clicks and ultimately traffic to your site.

Focus on what’s working

If something is working, focus your attention on those activities. If you post your blog randomly throughout the week and realise that Sunday’s are working best, try to schedule all of your future posts for Sunday. If you find that your site gets a spike in traffic during lunchtime, try posting offers and/or increasing your ad bidding during those times to get your ads shown more during peak times. If you find most of your referring traffic is from one or two sites, try posting on their often, advertising on there more or doing more activities to boost your presence on those sites.

Whilst it’s important to focus on what’s working, remember that the online landscape is constantly changing, so whilst you’re focusing on driving traffic through channels you know work, make sure you’re testing other new channels to keep up with any new trends.

Unfortunately, there’s no silver bullet when it comes to driving traffic to your site. However, combining some or all of the above strategies with more traditional strategies such as SEO and SEM, should certainly help see your analytics numbers start trending upwards.

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