You’ve designed your website to instil trust in your visitors.
You’ve implemented conventions and design aspects to maximise conversion.
And you’ve figured out how you’re going to take payments.
It’s all looking good so far. But what about the missing ingredient? How do you attract those all important visitors to your website?
And then you can harness the power of your social media influence.
Here are five tricks to try…
1. Harness youtube
Reviewing your products, showcasing customer testimonials and encouraging customers to upload videos are all ways you can harness the power of youtube to drive traffic to your store. As a starter, here’s an example of a product review uploaded by one of Busy Bee Candle’s customers.
Remember to include your web address and explore different offers to add that additional incentive to get viewers to click through.
And if you’re put off Youtube because you perceive creating videos as expensive, think again. Whilst there are benefits of hiring a video production company to create professional videos for you, you can supplement these with shorts from your flip camera or smart phone. In fact, check out this simple guide to get you started.
And remember, if you get your video right, there’s always the chance of it going viral 🙂 Here’s a great example from DollarShaveClub.com. It’s a brilliant video that’s so far clocked up over 8million youtube hits. In an interview with Bloomberg Businessweek in March last year, founder Michael Dubin explained how the promotional video for his razor subscription service cost just $4500 to make. But get the results. On the first day its popularity crashed their website!
2. Creative use of Facebook
There are stacks of opportunities to use Facebook to drive traffic. Here are a few:
- Run a competition. Although you need to be aware of Facebook’s regulations. If you fall foul of their rules, you risk having your page shut-down. This post by Jim Belosic is an excellent guide to running legal competitions. And if you want more, Social Media Queen Veronica Pullen explains the Facebook contest rules in detail. It’s well worth a read.
- Promote offers. Then drive customers to your site to buy.
- Upload videos.
- Engage fans and post questions that encourage them to interact with you. This can be especially valuable if customers post positive feedback.
- Use Facebook ads to promote specific offers and to target your ideal customer. Facebook is unique in its ability to target your ads to niche demographics. This means your campaign could be more cost effective because you are targeting the right people rather than wasting money on reaching out to just anyone.
Tweeting is an effective way to send traffic to you online store because you can include clickable links to take people to a specific page. In addition, the potential for retweeting and sharing could mean your message reaches a whole new audience.
You could tweet:
- Details of your current special offer
- A picture of your product in action
- A snippet of a customer testimonial
- Links to your blog posts and relevant product pages of your website
- Product of the week etc.
In addition, you can use hashtags to highlight specific keywords that your target market could be searching for. This is a useful tactic to help you get found by a new group of people.
And if you’re UK based, you could tap into some of the online communities such as #bizitalk. In addition, if you’re looking for some rapid exposure, you could consider sponsoring Purpledog’s Network for the day at a cost of £25.
Another tip is to review your Twitter profile. Instead of just including a link to your website, why not try a special link just for Twitter followers. Here’s mine. And whilst I don’t run an online store, the principle is the same. Simply create a dedicated landing page for new followers to introduce yourself, let them know what you do and then nudge them into your store. As a writer I’ve listed my top blog posts, you could list the most popular products you sell.
Blogging on a self-hosted domain can help you tap into organic search traffic by allowing you to build up a bank of relevant content focused on your chosen keywords.
But more than that, blogging is a fantastic way to tap into your customer base, initiate conversations and to build a relationship with them.
KidzOutdoors.com are an online store selling toys and equipment to encourage outdoor play. From telescopes to balance bikes to bug hunting kits the variety of products available is mind blowing 🙂 The website has a blog which works well because instead of directly selling items, it’s informative, interesting and shows products in context.
Here are some further tips for driving traffic with a blog
- Where relevant, add direct links to products in your online store. For example, if I was writing a post about time management for the Micro Business Hub, I would link to my review of Brian Tracy’s Eat That Frog!
- Offer a free incentive to encourage people to subscribe to your email list via your blog. With an email address, you can then engage in permission marketing.
- Interact with customers through the comment section.
- Write guest blogs and post them on relevant / complimentary websites to entice fresh traffic back to your store.
5. Customer service
Helping is often the quickest route to selling and smart online stores use social media to offer advice, answer questions and be, well, nice 🙂
- Stay alert for what people are saying about your business brand and remember this may not come in the form of a direct @mention or DM. To stay on top, set up a search for your business name. This means you’ll be able to respond quickly in the light of both good and bad comments.
- Always answer questions that are presented directly to you.
- Search questions relevant to your niche and provide answers.
- Make your social media icons prominent on your website so visitors can get in touch.
Social media is an amazing tool for micro business owners to exploit. But to get results you need to remember the golden rule. To be successful it’s essential you stimulate and engage in 2-way conversations. If you rely solely on broadcasting, your followers will rapidly get bored and tune out. In which case you can say good-bye to new visitors!
Over to you
I’ve only scratched the surface in this post and I’m aware I’ve only covered a handful of the social media options currently available (big thanks to Daniel Honey for some of these ideas). But could you help fill in the blanks? How have you used social media to drive traffic to your online store? What platforms do you swear by? What would you avoid at all costs? Please share your ideas in the comments below.
The possibilities are endless, but what else could you do with your social media to boost traffic to your online store? Make an action plan today.