For years, blogging has proved to be the most effective inbound marketing method for online businesses. Ecommerce sites that blog successfully are driving more relevant traffic, increasing brand awareness and creating shareable content.
This complete introduction to ecommerce blogging will share the fundamentals of creating a great blog and examples of online businesses that are doing it right.
Benefits of Blogging for Ecommerce
Too many online retailers focus solely on marketing tactics that convert visitors into direct sales like discounts and promotions. And yet, blogging isn’t about converting customers right away. It’s about engaging potential customers with valuable, relevant content.
Why you should blog for your business:
- Appealing to your target audience
- Driving qualified traffic
- Promoting products without being salesy
- Building credibility as an expert
- Generating leads by instilling trust
- Enabling readers to share content
Now, how do you create a successful blog that lets you reap all of those benefits?
Defining Buyer Personas
An ecommerce blog is a great medium for generating traffic but savvy business owners know that tons of traffic doesn’t always mean tons of sales. You should write content that appeals to your buyer personas.
Buyer personas are a crucial step to be able to write killer content for your blog. That’s why you should ask yourself these 9 questions when developing your buyer personas.
Now that you’ve defined your customers, you’ll find it much easier to make a return on your blogging efforts and create the ultimate content strategy.
Creating a Content Strategy
A content strategy will determine the type of content, tone, topics and information you’ll publish to engage prospective buyers.
Because buyer personas play such a large role when developing a content strategy, there isn’t one approach that works for every ecommerce blog. However, there are best practices that are working for many successful businesses regardless of what they are selling.
Engaging blog content ideas for inspiration:
- How-to videos
- Photo heavy content
- Do it yourself articles
- Outfit inspiration
- Holiday gift ideas
- Interviews with celebrated leaders
- Review or predict trends
- Showcase your team, office, etc
- Review related services, products, events
Always remember that your blog should build trust, provide information and increase brand awareness with content that converts readers and/or keeps them coming back for more.
Building an Editorial Calendar
Every active blog has an editorial calendar running behind the scenes. A monthly editorial calendar is a document that manages the planning, creation and publishing of blog posts.
A comprehensive editorial calendar includes:
Publish Date: That’s pretty self explanatory but make sure you consider holidays, days of the week and timing. This article covers the best days and times to publish content.
Title: Blog post titles should be SEO-friendly but most importantly, they should tempt your buyer persona to read.
SEO Keywords: These are the keywords you want to use throughout the blog post to rank higher on search engines. Here are 14 tips for writing SEO-friendly blog posts.
Call to Action: Every blog post should have a clear call to action. What exactly do you want your readers to do after reading this post? Like your Facebook page, view a product, watch a video?
Channels for Promotion: How will you promote this blog post to readers? For example, you might share the blog post on social networks or in your monthly newsletter.
Soon you’ll see that an editorial calendar is an indispensible tool for planning and executing a great content strategy.
Who’s Doing It Right?
You’re just about ready to start blogging! There’s just one last step. Take a look at the blogs of your competitors to assess what they’re doing right and what you’ll do better.
For your own inspiration, here are 3 ecommerce businesses that are blogging successfully:
Target has taken blogging for online retail to another level! Their blog, A Bullseye View, is an incredible source for content ideas.
Ikea’s blog, Share Space, promotes their products without pushing a sale. By offering design advice and encouraging customers to share content, their blog inspires and converts!
aDressed is Gap Inc’s official blog. Their blog is a platform for learning more about the company and positions Gap as an industry leader.
Add a blog to your PrestaShop store
Online stores powered by PrestaShop can easily start blogging for their business. Add a page for your already running blogging platform or choose a module from the Addons store to set up a blog on your website.
Not using PrestaShop yet? Download PrestaShop and start your free online store today.