This is a guest post by Arianne Foulks of Aeolidia.
I’ve discussed conversion rate on on the Aeolidia blog before, and this is a useful companion piece, about how to get serious buyers to your website in the first place.
It can be very puzzling figuring out how to get people to visit your site, especially if you’ve been relying on a service such as Etsy to drive traffic to you. Once you have a website of your own to promote, you need a plan to reach out to all the right people.
I have a lot of great email chats with creative business owners who receive my newsletter, and I was recently asked:
Another thing we are currently working on right now is probably something a lot of new e-commerce site owners are trying to figure out – good quality traffic. We are working through our marketing plan/checklist now, but I know it’s just going to take time to get the traffic flow we want. I think all the pieces are there – good quality site, good products, and good social media interaction. We just need to grow our trickle of customers to a steady flow!
This question shows a lot of insight, because the biz owner knows she should be looking for good quality traffic, not just traffic. “Traffic” is how we refer to the flow of people onto and through our websites. Your traffic is how many visitors you get. If you have low quality traffic, you may get hundreds of thousands of people on your site, with only a few remaining there to purchase.
High quality traffic will give you a lot of sales with less people visiting (and less marketing effort on your part).
Why you want targeted traffic
Many of our clients run creative businesses that are so unique and out of the mainstream that they’re going to want highly targeted traffic – meaning visitors who understand the type of business they are, and who are looking for the kind of stuff they sell.
For instance, we featured Finspo on our blog recently, a business that creates wearable mermaid tails. You can’t just tell a random person on the street about Finspo and expect them to bust out their wallet. Advertising someplace for everyone to see will likely be a waste of Finspo’s ad dollars. But advertising in places where she knows mermaid tail lovers are hanging out will pay off well, such as a sci-fi/fantasy conference where people dress in costume, or a mermaid-loving Facebook group.
Your business doesn’t need to be wildly unusual to want targeted traffic. Most readers of a blog like Design*Sponge, for example, are interested in design, naturally, so a business selling design-oriented products or services would much prefer the targeted traffic of a Design*Sponge editorial post than a mention on a website that caters to an audience who don’t value design.
The more unique or niche your business is, the more carefully you’ll want to target your marketing efforts. If you feel like you offer something most everyone would want, go ahead and send a firehose of untargeted traffic to your site and enjoy! But generally, it’s easier to distinguish yourself by not appealing to the masses, and instead speaking to your own group of likeminded people.
So, how exactly do you do this?
Research your target customer
Things to know when marketing your products or services:
- Who is my target customer?
- What problem can I solve for my target customer?
- What desires can I fulfill for my target customer?
- Where does my target customer hang out?
- How does my target customer communicate?
- What motivates my target customer to make a purchase?
Spend some time in your customers’ shoes and find out what blogs they’re reading, what hashtags they’re following, what Pinterest boards they build, what language they use.
This will allow you to do the right thing when trying to attract them.
Make a plan to attract the right people
Understanding your target customer will help you know:
- What blogs you want to be featured on
- What sites to advertise on
- What keywords to pay for
- How to word your pitch, advertisement, or website
- What benefits to point out
- What offers to make
- What collaborations to forge
How can you apply this research?
Here are some ways to market your business and get the traffic that will convert to sales on your website:
- Get editorial features, do giveaways, or guest post on blogs that you know your perfect customers are reading.
- Pitch your business to niche publications.
- Use Google’s retargeting ads to only advertise to people who have already visited your site and are likely to be interested (best quality traffic!).
- When purchasing keyword ads, use very specific keywords, rather than vague or broad ones (for Finspo, “mermaid tail,” not “costumes”).
- Adjust the copy/content on your website to speak directly to your target customer, and remove anything that’s trying to pander to a wide audience. This will help with retaining the traffic you get, and making sure Google shows your site to the right people.
- Post regularly to a blog on your site that is very specific to what your target customer is interested in. This will make you show up on Google when these people are searching for their interests.
- Be familiar enough with your audience that you can keep them subscribed to your newsletter and your social media feeds, and share with their friends.
- Collaborate with a non-competing business that has an audience that will like your stuff, to promote each others’ work in a win-win way.
How do you market your business?
Are you trying to reach a lot of people, or enough of the right people?
How do you know when you’re doing things right?
What questions do you have about applying this advice to your business?
Please share in the comments!
Get your targeted traffic workbook
Arianne has created a free PDF workbook to research and pin down what you know about where your best customers are hanging out. It explains the concepts above in more detail, and you can use the included tips to make a plan to get high-quality, high-converting traffic to your website. Click here to get the worksheet and bring buying customers to your site!