What do you need to do to create a blog that will drive customers to your site (and, more importantly, into your store)?
Blogs can add traffic to both your website and to the door of your retail establishment, but the hardest part is knowing where to start. Having a great blog with compelling content builds brand equity and fosters effective SEO. Telling ‘your story’ is essential not only to introduce yourself to new customers but also in retaining existing customers. Having a great, and relevant blog enhances your Customers’ Experience (CX) – remembering you for more than just trying to sell your products or services.
This article focuses on the types of blog posts and best practices that work for small businesses, including retail outlets of all types.
Every business has a story behind it. Is your’s a family business? A lifelong dream? A technology-driven concept? You must tell your story (often called a business’s narrative).
The informative blog post is the perfect spot to demonstrate your technology or a piece of what you sell. It’s also a great place to offer advice on the setup and use of the products you sell. The informative blog post doesn’t necessarily need a lot of text – photos with good captions and videos with short intro text will do nicely.
Offer a Point-of-View
This can be a product highlight, review, or leadership editorial. The last one offers the opportunity to introduce and discuss trends that will get people talking about, say, different tech formats, the need to upgrade, and even the state of your CX. The idea is to get current and potential customers thinking about visiting your website or establishment. Bringing them into the discussion is often a great way to accomplish this.
Interview a manufacturer of a product you sell. Invite an expert to speak on a relevant topic, such as the advantages of using eco-packaging or recycling. Have a discussion with your oldest salesperson on the store floor on the issues they encounter. Making a human connection always offers instant appeal to readers.
Consistency and Relevance
You need to determine the number of posts you would like to publish – daily, weekly, monthly, etc. Whichever you decide upon you need to have a schedule and stick to it. You don’t have to post every day. Start small and have a goal of a weekly post, then grow into more frequent posting. The main thing is to be consistent. As you write and publish the posts remember to insert call-to-action buttons – like inviting the customer to the store to try out a new product you will be demonstrating, or offering in-store only specials.
Include videos and photos and add descriptive or identifying captions to the images. In terms of hyperlinks in the copy, they should ve a mix of links to other posts on your site and outside sites with reputations for quality content with authority
You will also want to organize your posts into different categories (product, topic, how-to, etc.). This will not only make it easier for people to find relevant content on your blog but will also help with internal linking and SEO.
A word about SEO. Unlike Search Engine Marketing (SEM) SEO is essentially a more organic and free way to get exposure from people as they surf online. How to optimize your posts so they appear on the first page of search results on Google is to make sure it is compelling. Make sure your content is good and original, that it uses popular keywords related to your content that people will be searching for, and that other reputable blogs link to you and you link to them.
Starting a blog for your business might not have been in the original plans, but it is worth considering, as it can add great value and drive customers to purchase from you.