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Efficient Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Online Store

Profile picture of Dimitar Alimaskoski
Dimitar Alimaskoski
7th September, 2023
9 minutes

As we march forward into the digital age, eCommerce purchases are bound to become more frequent than ever, having already become the new normal shopping for many customers around the world. A study shows that up to 55.9% of internet users between the ages of 16 and 64 make online purchases weekly (Datareportal).

However, the eCommerce arena is also fiercely competitive. To thrive in this landscape, you need more than just a great product - you need a steady stream of web traffic.

In this article, we'll explore the most powerful strategies to help you drive traffic to your online store and enhance your overall business performance.

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How to drive traffic to your online store?

Conduct keyword research

Keyword research plays a pivotal role in understanding your eCommerce landscape.

While you might think it’s time-consuming to delve into keyword research, the results you’ll get can offer you pretty valuable insights into what words and phrases customers fall for the most.

If you can’t decide which keyword tool is the best to use, here are some of the absolute best free and paid tools you can try out:

  • Wordstream. Free tool. Wordstream is a completely free keyword tool with a super user-friendly interface. It offers insights into keywords, search volumes, and even cost-per-click (CPC) rates.
  • Ahrefs. Paid tool. Although slightly more expensive, Ahrefs is one of the most comprehensive keyword tools around. The tool provides you with a robust keyword research feature, allowing you to explore keywords, analyze competitors, get insight into backlinks, identify content gaps, and even conduct site audits. Plans start from $99/month.
  • Moz. Paid tool. Moz allows users to conduct keyword research by providing levels of difficulty and ranking. Moz also includes site auditing and backlink analysis. Plans start from $99/month.
  • Google Trends. Free tool. Google Trends is a free tool that offers insights into keyword popularity over a certain period of time. Despite keyword research, Google Trends is also a great tool for content planning and identifying trending topics.
  • AnswerThePublic. Free tool. Answer The Public is another free tool that generates keyword ideas in the form of questions, prepositions, and comparisons. It provides a visual representation of queries related to your topic.

Upgrade your site design

Your website’s design is the digital storefront of your online store. It represents a crucial factor in attracting and retaining visitors. On top of that, search engines like Google look at a site’s design as an important ranking criterion – the more user-friendly your website is the better the ranking.

Since the art of site design isn’t a one-stop destination, you can constantly make changes based on what your customers need.

To create a captivating web design and easily manageable storefront, consider these essential design tips:

  • Mobile-responsive design. With the majority of users browsing on mobile devices, ensure your site is mobile-responsive for multiple types of devices.
  • Streamlined navigation. Simplify your store’s structure and ensure that customers can effortlessly find what they’re looking for.
  • Visual elements. Include high-quality images that show your products in the best light possible.
  • User-friendly layout. Choose a clutter-free layout with well-defined headers, concise product descriptions, and clear call-to-action buttons that stand out.
  • Consistent branding. Maintain consistent branding elements, such as logos, fonts, and colors, throughout your site.
  • A/B testing. Continuously improve your design by conducting A/B tests on various elements.
  • Social proof. Display customer reviews, ratings, and testimonials to build credibility.

Improve your website performance

A high-performing website is the backbone of your online store. It influences user satisfaction, boosts traffic, increases conversion rates, and improves your KPIs.

Here are key strategies to improve site performance:

  • Hosting provider. Choose a reputable hosting provider and consider upgrading to a VPS plan.
  • Page speed optimization. Compress images, enable browser caching, and minimize CSS and HTTP requests to enhance site speed.
  • Remove plugins. Regularly review and remove unnecessary plugins to reduce server load.
  • Database cleanup. Regularly clean up your website’s database.
  • Monitoring and testing. Continuously monitor your website’s performance with tools like Google PageSpeed Insights and GTmetrix.

Optimize your store for SEO

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a bit of a boogieman topic for many website owners. It’s a term that is both complex and detailed, covering so many areas that it can be difficult for a solo website owner to manage.

In fact, some of the points covered above can be considered part of SEO – improving site design and performance – more specifically, part of technical SEO. In this part, we’ll cover other two important types of SEO: on-page and off-page SEO.

On-page SEO refers to all the changes that are implemented directly on your website. This includes:

  • Use of relevant keywords. Insert keywords relevant to your niche throughout the whole website.
  • High-quality site content. Create high-quality and informative content that addresses the needs and interests of your target audience.
  • Title tag and meta description optimization. Write engaging and relevant title tags and meta descriptions that’ll make customers click on your website.
  • Header tags optimization. Use different types of headers (H1, H2, H3. H4, etc.) to create well-organized and easily readable content.
  • Image optimization. Compress images for faster loading times and don’t forget to insert alt text.
  • Internal linking. Include internal links to relevant pages within your website. This helps search engines understand the structure of your site and provides users with additional useful resources.
  • Good URL structure. Make sure your URL structure is descriptive, not too long, and includes relevant keywords.

Off-page SEO refers to all strategies you incorporate outside of your website. Some activities include:

  • Link building. Focus on acquiring high-quality backlinks from reputable websites by doing link exchanges or guest posting. For those looking to streamline the process, there are plenty of tips to outsource backlinks that can be invaluable.
  • Social media. Actively post on social media platforms and engage with your audience on a regular basis.
  • Influencer marketing. Collaborate with influencers in your industry to promote your products as they can help you expand your reach and target a broader audience.
  • Local SEO. Make your business more visible to your local community by creating a Google Business Profile. Here you can add information about your business and encourage customers to leave reviews.

Be active on social media

Utilizing social media channels is another popular approach to generating brand awareness and driving substantial traffic to your website.

The important thing to consider is choosing the platforms that are suitable for your industry: Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Pinterest, to name a few.

Regardless of your choice of platform, make sure you work with the right social media marketing tools to help you achieve optimal results.

Launch an email marketing campaign

Email marketing is far from dead. It may be outshined by social media but still highly efficient if done correctly.

Here are some top tips to ensure your email marketing efforts hit the mark:

  • Use segmentation. The best way to target the right audience is by dividing your email list into segments based on demographics, behaviors, interests, and other relevant categories.
  • Deliver valuable content. Provide content that has deep value and customers will find really helpful – share new product arrivals, incoming sales, special offers, exclusive educational content, and many more.
  • Add a personalized touch. Address customers by their names and tailor your emails to their interests.
  • Dynamic call-to-action. Implement CTA’s that stand out and clearly state the action you want recipients to take.
  • Email list hygiene. Regularly clean your email list by removing inactive email addresses.
  • Conduct regular tests. Experiment with different email elements like subject lines, content, and CTA buttons to see what resonates best with your audience. What works today may not work for tomorrow.

Create content that sells

In the context of eCommerce, many site owners tend to think of selling in a very direct way. Because of this, a large portion of potential customers quickly lose interest.

Consumers today have far greater choices and are a lot smarter. And with hundreds of other businesses trying to sell them the same thing as you, you have to come up with a smart way to approach them.

Instead of a direct selling approach, consider creating content that genuinely benefits potential customers:

  • Blog posts. Create informative articles that will educate and engage customers while subtly promoting your products.
  • ‘About Us’ page. Include an ‘About Us’ page where customers can get more information about your business and products.
  • Compelling headlines. Write attention-grabbing headlines that cause curiosity.
  • Storytelling. Create product stories your customers can relate to.
  • Highlight features. Focus on explaining your products’ features and how they directly benefit your customers.
  • Customer testimonials. Showcase authentic testimonials and reviews to build trust with your customers.

Work with influencers

To boost your traffic quickly, consider working with influencers relevant to your niche. Those with a substantial following base can expose your store to new audiences and even help you increase your sales.

Remember that these boosts are typically only for the time the campaigns are run. In the meantime, make sure to simultaneously work on long-term strategies as well to get more sustainable growth.

Invest in Google Ads

Last but not least, drive traffic by investing in Google Ads.

Considered the most used search engine on the internet, Google is the perfect place to run ads, allowing you to reach a massive number of potential customers.

Ads can be run based on location, demographics, language, keywords, and even type of device, providing you with a fairly efficient way to expose your products to your target audience.

What’s the best way to drive traffic to your online store?

As you can tell by now, there are many ways you can drive traffic to your online store. While a good number may not need actual cash investment, expect to devote significant time working on them.

The good news though is that because of the diversity in what you can do, hitting a wall in one strategy can simply mean temporarily working on another one instead.

Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. It’s essential to monitor your efforts, analyze the data, and adapt your tactics accordingly. Whether you focus on SEO, content marketing, social media, email campaigns, or a combination of these methods, the key is consistency and dedication.

Hunker down and work progressively. Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will be your eCommerce store.