E-commerce That Works - How To Generate Traffic
October 6, 2011
Bring the traffic on!
Having an e-commerce website is good. Taking orders is better... Here again, to generate traffic a few best practices apply.
The different sources of traffic
There are two sources of traffic for your website:
- Paid traffic – that is traffic that you buy. You can for example bid on keywords on Google Adwords and have links to your website displayed on blogs using the Google AdSense service, or have links to your website displayed in search engines results pages.
- Natural traffic – visitors find your using search engines or by clicking a link from another website that takes them to yours.
Even though paid traffic bring instant results, we recommend that you focus on optimizing your natural traffic, we find it to be a much better (and cheaper) long term strategy.
How to optimize your natural traffic
The internet is filled with information on how to optimize natural traffic on your website. To abrutly summarize them there are 3 important points:
The technical aspects of your website
It is important that the HTML code of your pages is optimized for search engines so that they better understand and index your content. Another key technical aspect is to use "friendly URLs": you should be able to choose with real words the URLs of your pages.
Your content must be frequent and targeted (or Content Is King)
Search engines scan your website (with so called spiders) and index your content in their databases. Each word, each expression will be indexed. If a visitor searches for such an expression, if one of your pages contains this expression, it will be displayed in the results pages.
Publishing content frequently on your website feeds the spiders with more information about you and your business and allows search engine to better understand your relevance. It improves your rankings.
Targeting a niche with your content is a very good strategy as well: there will be much less competition for the same keywords, making it easier to rank high.
Links from other websites to yours have 2 benefits: they bring you visits (as long as the referring website has itself enough traffic) and improve your reputation with search engines. The more inbound links, the better your reputation with search engines and the higher you will rank.
Other ideas to generate traffic
Besides paid and natural traffic, there are a few other ways to generate traffic, for example:
- Newsletters: send a montly newsletter to your customers to keep them updated about your business. It helps them keep you in mind.
- Distribute promo codes to your past customers and encourage them to share them with their friends or on social networks.
Same page in French.