Try these marketing tactics to get more sales for your online store.
Online stores don't ask for much. More traffic, more conversions. That's it.
But ask anyone who has tried to run an online store and you'll know actually getting these is easier said than done.
In this article, we put together 40 ecommerce marketing ideas you can start doing today to sell more products immediately.
Some are simple tweaks to the website or social media without much difficulty. Otherwise may require a bit of research and buckling down.
But if you commit to doing one of these things each day for the next couple of weeks, we can guarantee that your online store will see more sales in 2021 and beyond. So let's get right to it.
1. Set up a live chat on your landing page
Are people visiting your website only to leave shortly after?
One of the simplest ways to increase your conversion rate is to set up a live chat bot on your website.
You've more than likely seen these before. They pop up in the lower right-hand corner of websites asking "Hi! How can I help you today?"
It's the online version of the store representative, when people would walk in to brick-and-mortar shops and be greeted with a real person.
A chat bot is the closest thing you can give to a real person when they visit your website. Research shows that people are twice as likely to complete a purchase after having some interaction with a business through live chat.
So if you want to try a simple thing to start getting more sales today, make sure your website has a live chat bot integrated.
2. Run Facebook Dynamic Product Ads
Facebook has over 2.5 billion monthly active users and is by far the largest social media platform in the world.
The company has enormous data on what these users like, the groups they are a part of, their location, demographics, age and so forth. If you aren't advertising your store to these users on Facebook, you are missing out a huge pool of potential customers.
For ecommerce stores in particular, Facebook offers Dynamic Product Ads which can be served to customers who have already visited your website.
Moreover, these ads can automatically generate ads for products they viewed on your online store.
Known as retargeting, this is a powerful way to get users to return to your website after they have left.
Research shows that website visitors who are shown retargeted ads are 70% more likely to convert.
You can use Dynamic Product Ads to target customers who have:
- Viewed content: Once a user views a product page on your store, you can begin serving them ads of that product.
- Add to cart: If a customer adds a product to their cart but abandons the cart, you can show ads that promote that product.
- Product purchase: After a customer buys a product, you can serve them ads of related products, new arrivals or deals.
3. Use Product Tagging in Instagram
Instagram is owned by Facebook and the advantage with advertising on Facebook is that many of the ads you serve on Facebook can also be used on Instagram.
Instagram itself has over 1 billion users and has a unique content platform that focuses on sharing images and short disappearing videos known as stories.
Around 90% of users on Instagram follow a business acccount. So it is important that one of those be your account.
Because of a new partnership with Shopify, businesses on Instagram can now use product tagging on Instagram allowing customers to directly purchase items within the Instagram interface.
Ads with product tags drive people directly to a product detail page to learn more. From there, people can go to your website to purchase.
4. Try Single Keyword Ad Groups in Google Ads
The benefit of Google Ads is that you can put your ads on the world's two largest search engines, Google and YouTube. The downside is that Google's advertising platform is difficult to navigate for beginners.
While Google Shopping Campaigns tend to be the go-to format for stores that are selling products on Google, search ads can be equally as effective.
The problem with search ads though, is that it can be difficult to create search ads for all the products in your store, especially when you have hundreds or thousands of products.
One effective way to get around this is to use online tools that automatically create search ads for all the products in your store using Single Keyword Ad Groups.
5. Talk to customers on social media
Don't expect to just share a link to your store on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and expect to get people to buy your products.
To build a brand following, make sure to respond to comments on Twitter and Facebook by your followers and build conversations around them. You can view Chipotle's twitter handle to get a sense of how to talk to customers there.
6. Ask friends and family to share your store
If you've just launched your online store, then the best way to spread the word about it is to ask your friends and family to share.
Ask anyone who is close to you to share on Facebook and email their circle. This initial boost in exposure goes a long way and getting the store started.
7. Retweet on Twitter
Twitter can be a great platform to build a community around. But in order to get followers you need to be active on the platform.
Make sure to retweet posts by people in your industry and follow influencers. People will begin to notice and follow you.
Twitter can also act as a customer support tool. Showcase your care for your customers by responding to customer feedback publicly. Check out this guide on how to create a Twitter strategy that gets results.
8. Post your store on Reddit
Reddit is a goldmine for finding niche communities around different topics.
Chances are you can find subreddits related to your store there. Join them all and begin responding to questions from and posts from different users in these forums.
But don't just spam these forums with a link to your store. This is a surefire way to get banned, as Reddit users have a low tolerance of anything that even remotely looks like an ad.
Make sure to follow the community guidelines, and if you do want to promote your store, reach out to the moderators first to approve your post. Here's a guide to marketing on Reddit.
9. Run contests and giveaways
Contests are an easy and affordable way to get your brand in front of a lot of people. By giving away your product, you can make sure your contest gets in front of the right kind of people: potential customers.
However, many contests fail. There are a few key mistakes to avoid when running a contest to promote your business. Make sure the platform, the timing, the messaging, and the steps people have to take to enter your contest are well thought out.
Need some inspiration? Check out these contest ideas you can copy for your store.
10. Offer a time-sensitive discount
Time-sensitive discounts use urgency to engage buyers who might be on the fence. The psychology behind the idea is based on the pleasure principle, which says that we’ll avoid pain to feel pleasure.
In this case, the pain would be missing the deal and paying full price later. The pleasure, of course, is knowing you got a great deal.
For instance, you could send an email to your subscribers saying that they have until midnight to respond to a deal that otherwise expires.
11. Send free samples to Instagram influencers
Getting in on influencer marketing is one of the best ways to spread word about your brand.
Send free samples of your product to Instagram influencers in exchange for them posting about them in their feeds. Because influencer marketing is beginning to get saturated, you may have to pay them money to get exposure. This will depend on how popular the influencer is.
12. Reach out to bloggers
There are tons of bloggers out there that run websites on different topics and various industries. While many of them have a certain platform they focus on, like Instagram, YouTube or Twitter, many also stick to updating their traditional website with new content.
Reaching out to these bloggers and asking for backlinks to your website on articles that are related to your store is a good way to improve the SEO of your website and also get your store in front of the blogger's audience.
If you run your own blog, you could offer to plug the blogger's website in a related post on your own blog.
13. Reach out to YouTubers
Similar to reaching out to bloggers, there are tons of people vlogging about different topics that could be related to your product.
Reach out to smaller YouTubers and ask them if they would be willing to make a video about your product, or to add a link to your product in the description of an existing YouTube video.
14. Guest post to other blogs
Bloggers are obviously experts at creating content, but even their time is limited. Offer a guest post on their blog instead.
The benefit for them is they get free content, while the benefit for you is you get exposure to their audience.
15. Start an affiliate program
Affiliate programs are a great way to incentivize people to begin promoting your store for you.
There are various ways you could set these up, but the most enticing one for bloggers and Youtubers is to offer them a lifetime cut of sales.
This offers YouTubers a way to earn passive income, while offering you a steady stream of new customers. A win win.
Here's a list of the most popular affiliate programs in 2021 gathered by Hubspot. Use that list for inspiration when crafting your own affiliate program.
16. Contact local newspapers
If your product has a unique story to the area you live, you could contact local newspapers to write about you. This can create added exposure for the community where you live.
Known as local advertising, the focus here is to build a community around a certain area as opposed to reaching as many people as possible.
17. Start a blog
Blogging is a great way to promote your store. With the right approach, blogging can be an effective way to drive traffic and promote the lifestyle around your products. In fact, one study by HubSpot found that the more you blog, the more traffic your website gets.
Use your own blog to drive traffic and promote your products. When done effectively, blogging drives search engine traffic, attracts customers, and captures the attention of the media and high-profile bloggers who could write about you.
18. Start a podcast
The audio version of a blog, starting a podcast can be an easier way to create content because the nature of podcasting is conversational.
Writing a blog often involves research, writing, editing and polishing up a post before setting it life.
When you start a podcast, you can get more conversational by inviting guests in your industry and just sharing your expertise in the area you are selling in.
Podcasts can also be a great source of content for your blog. You can use the information that a guest speaker presented in your podcast to then craft a blog post out of.
Get srated with podcasting advertising here.
19. Start a vlog
YouTubing is the most popular platform to start vlogging in. Starting a YouTube channel doesn't have to require some advanced video editing skills. If you've already got a blog you've been running for years, a quick way to get started is to turn your blog posts into short, informational videos.
20. Write meta titles that match search intent
The meta title refers to the title of a HTML document that is displayed both in Search Engine result snippets as well as the page's tab in browsers.
One way to increase traffic to your store is to improve the meta titles on all of your pages so that they match searcher intent. It's a standard part of any SEO strategy.
21. Write better meta descriptions
Related to meta titles are meta descriptions. Meta descriptions should simply summarize the content of the web page. As such, you want to make it catchy and stand out in the search results, so that users click on your page more.
22. Add internal links to your pages
Another SEO practice to improve the ranking of your pages is add internal links whenever possible.
Linking your page to other pages of your website helps Google understand which pages are a priority in the structure of your website.
By adding two to three internal links to your page, you can ensure that your page will rank better in Google and thus increase traffic to your store.
23. Use rich snippets for products
Rich snippets are search listings that include information about a product’s price, availability, and review count. They’re useful for learning more about a particular product and/or site at a glance from the search results page without having to visit it.
If your page is appearing on a results page and it includes a price range, star rating, image, or anything that makes your listing stand out from listings that have only the standard meta titles, description, and URLs, your page will certainly get more traffic.
24. Capture more email susbcribers
There are too many tweets and Facebook posts for us to keep up with, and email can offer a more intimate interaction. People are still more protective of messages sent to their personal inboxes versus their social feeds. Plus, email gives you the space to say things that can’t fit into a social media post.
To get started with email marketing, actively promote your newsletter, blog and any other email capture efforts to get as many subscribers as you can.
25. Improve your email campaigns
It’s not enough to simply capture a bunch of email addresses. You then need to send regular, valuable emails for the channel to be an effective ecommerce marketing activity.
There are many occasions that are perfect for sending emails that your subscribers will actually appreciate. These can include sending a welcome email, providing exclusive promos, sending regular newsletters, sharing relevant content and thank you notes on any purchases.
26. Run holiday campaigns
One particular aspect of email marketing needs to be singled out and that is running promos for holidays.
Make a list of major holidays, such as Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Halloween or Christmas and make sure to send out an email with a special offer of your products related to these holidays.
Don't just target the major national holidays. Take a look at any local holidays or events taking place in your city and build a campaign around those.
27. Improve your landing page and site design
If your store is poorly designed, then you will lose customers. Not only do they look untrustworthy, stores with a poor design will leave your customers confused that otherwise would have purchased something.
Make sure your products are properly segmented into the right pages. Check whether you have too many products on a single page.
Check to see if the font is too small or big or hard to read.
If your theme looks off, try to purchase a theme on your Shopify or Wix site, or use any of their free templates.
28. Leverage user-generated content
User-generated content (UGC) is a great way to generate social proof. When prospective customers see that people just like them are regularly purchasing your products, they’ll feel more confident in doing the same.
According to Salesforce, 54% of consumers trust information from online reviews and recommendations from their peers, compared to the 20% who trust the brand itself.
UGC can take many forms. Technically, even product reviews are UGC. One of the most effective types of UGC is pictures of customers actually using your products.
29. Go local
Brick-and-mortar businesses aren’t the only ones who can jump on the local movement. Online retailers can also take a local approach to their ecommerce marketing tactics to increase online sales.
To figure out what local means for you, here are a few ways you can look at it:
- Identify where you have large concentrations of customers and run a promotion for that location. Look at which products those customers are buying and other spending behavior indicators, and consider local events or seasons to appropriately time a promotion.
30. Optimize your website for mobile
It's important for your website to work well on mobile devices, so if you haven't yet invested in making your website mobile-friendly, it's time to do so. Here are just a few reasons why your mobile presence is critical to your business:
- Mobile-friendly sites show up higher in search results
- Mobile searches make up more than half of searches on Google.com
- For many advertisers, the majority of traffic comes from people on their mobile phones
- If your site isn't mobile-friendly, visitors are 5 times more likely to leave
31. Take compelling photos
Taking high-quality photos of your products is a quick way to improve sales.
Customers are visual creatures and having high quality photos of your products will make them more reputable and make people more willing to buy them.
32. Create customer loyalty program
Focusing on customer retention is a cost-effective way to increase online sales. Return customers account for 22% of a retailer’s revenue, while making up just 11% of the total customer base, according to Stitch Labs. They also spend 15% more over the course of a year.
One way to reward loyal customers and big spenders is through a customer loyalty program. There are many ways both your customers and you can benefit from a loyalty program. They give customers extra incentive to make a purchase and they keep your brand top-of-mind through automated reminders.
33. Try Pinterest Buyable Pins
If you run a Shopify store that meets the eligibility requirements, you can take your Pinterest marketing to the next level by enabling Buyable Pins. This option makes it easier for Pinners to buy products they see on Pinterest while helping merchants sell more.
34. Go on TikTok
TikTok is the latest social media app to go viral. Advertisers are increasingly taking the app seriously and beginning to advertise there.
With a distinctly younger audience, TikTok can be a great way to increase exposure to your products, especially because advertising there remains cheap comapred to Instagram or Facebook.
35. Try Snapchat
Snapchat also has an enticing advertising offering for businesses. It's another platform that is popular among Generation Z, so if your products are marketable to this group, it can't hurt to try Snapchat Ads as well.
36. Product Hunt
Product Hunt is a popular destination and community for people who love finding new products. Although apps and software are more popular than other industries, you’ll regularly see physical products make an appearance on the front page.
Listing your products on smaller websites that have a niche focus can increase sales. Uncrate, for example, focuses on advertising largely to males with a distinct vintage edge to their products.
By contrast, Etsy is more popular among women and can be an effective medium for crafts and decorations.
39. Join Facebook Groups
Similar to joining Reddit Communities, joining Facebook Groups related to your products is a great way to build a community around your brand.
40. Upsell your other products
Finally, one of the simplest ways to increase sales on your store is to upsell your other products when users are checking out.
Often users aren't even aware that there are other products on your website they could be interested in.
Offering a special package deal when users check out is a quick way to get users to buy more.
The key to make upselling work is to ensure that the upsells are related to your original product and to be sensitive to the price range of your customer.
Start advertising today
Now you have 40 ecommerce marketing ideas you can begin implementing today. Some are harder than others, but if you commit to implementing one of these per day you can ensure that traffic will increase to your store and conversions will go up.