Content Marketing: Boosting Sales for Online Shops

You have probably come across the term “content marketing” before. A good content marketing strategy can pay off, especially for online shops. We’ll explain to you what this marketing strategy is all about, how online shops in particular can benefit from it, and what actually constitutes “good” content. 

What is content marketing? 

Content marketing is a marketing strategy that involves the planning, creation, publication and distribution of digital content for a specific target group. 

This content can be product descriptions, (product) videos, blog articles with tips how/why to use your products. 

The creation and distribution of relevant articles, videos, podcasts and other media aim to attract your ideal audience and address a need within a niche.  

In the long term, you can build up trust and create a connection between your audience and your brand.  

Ideally, in the short term, the customer takes direct actions by purchasing a product through a link or recommendation in your content, but this doesn't necessarily have to happen in order to be considered effective. It's not primarily about attracting potential customers to your site with great offers and promises, but rather about organically increasing brand awareness.

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It's important to remember that good content informs and entertains visitors while inspiring users to visit your online shop.  

The quality of the content is crucial because good content shouldn't be mistaken with classic advertising. Ideally, your content delivers real added value for the target audience and is not a clear marketing technique just to sell products. 

Speaking of traditional marketing and paid campaigns, content marketing doesn't necessarily require a large budget.

How can online shops benefit from content marketing? 

Implementing a good content marketing strategy can pay off in many ways, especially for online shops. 

The creation, marketing, and optimisation of high-quality content contributes to attracting customers in the long term, helps to develop your expert status within the industry and makes your company better known. 

Below, we would like to show you the most important advantages of this marketing strategy in more detail. 

Improved brand image 

It is well known that most consumers get information from the internet.  

Blogs, online forums, and social media play an important role in this. 

By taking advantage of these channels and creating interesting content that provides value to your target audience, you will keep a positive image in their minds.  

You will also help to increase trust in your brand - and trust is essential, especially in online retail, if you want to make sales. 

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If you or your company are present outside of your own online shop (e.g. on blogs or in third-party online forums like Reddit) and you can competently explain popular topics within your niche, you’ll build up an expert reputation and gain a valuable advantage in trust. 

When creating content, you can rely on your own specialist knowledge or the knowledge of your team of colleagues.  

For example, if you sell sports equipment, you could put together useful information about specific sports or training tips. 

In comparison to advertising formats such as Google Ads or some other advertising options, content marketing enables you to use storytelling to your advantage. With a human touch, you'll develop a stronger brand identity and strengthen loyalty. 

One element that could help you with this is creating or optimising your “About Us” page for your online store. 

Of course, it is important that the content you design is tailored to your target group in some way. 

More visibility and awareness 

man holding giant pencil

Source: shutterstock/TarikVision

Not only does sharing your expertise give you a better image, but you also gain more visibility overall. 

By having your online store appear organically on other channels and media, you expand the reach of the content and your brand as a whole. 

Remember, in the longer term, effective content marketing helps to increase the awareness of your online shop. 

After all, interesting, informative and entertaining content spreads naturally on the internet. Keep in mind that a piece of content doesn't necessarily need to go “viral” in order to have organic success. Ranking on the first page of Google for a strong search term can provide hundreds or thousands of users to your site every month.  

In addition, users who read about you on a blog, for example, are more likely to visit your website and shop there if they have already seen the name of your shop somewhere else and have a good opinion of it already. 

One option for getting links on other sites is to set up a collaboration to create a guest post somewhere. 

Better ranking in search engines (SEO) 

Speaking of more reach: another advantage of content marketing is that the positioning of your website in the search engines can be significantly improved. 

High-quality, unique, and helpful content is considered particularly relevant by Google's algorithm and is therefore given priority when ranking. 

Ultimately, the search engine giant always wants to provide its users with the highest quality search results. 

Above all, contributions that solve a problem or provide a completely new look at a product are rewarded by search engines. 

Even attractive texts in your product descriptions and on your category pages are enough to improve your ranking. 

Download product page SEO checklist

On the other hand, content that can already be found countless times on the internet will not help your online shop achieve a significantly better ranking. 

Qualitative content is therefore part of every good search engine optimisation (SEO) strategy. 

Increased conversion rates 

“I like to buy from someone who gives me good advice” – that’s what the recipients of your content should ideally say. 

After all, people like to shop where they feel they get good advice – even in physical shops. 

That should be the overarching goal of your content marketing strategy.  

When it comes to product pages, higher conversion rates can be achieved with good content. This is particularly true for products that require explanations. If the product page is accompanied by good content (whether background texts, customer reviews or video workshops), this can be a great conversion tool. 

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Sooner or later, all of the above-mentioned benefits will ensure that more people know your brand and visit your online shop. 

And if the content on your website is of high quality and attractively presented, more visitors to your shop will complete a purchase. 

What makes good content? 

In this article, we have emphasised quite a bit that the content you develop as part of your marketing strategy must be of good quality.  

 We will now show you what it means to have “good content”. 

1. High quality and unique

The quality of the content is crucial because it's what separates organic content marketing from the difference to advertising. 

Remember, good content informs, inspires and entertains your target group. 

Both your customers and the search engines particularly reward contributions that solve a specific problem or provide a completely new approach to a product. 

It is also important that your content stands out from the crowd and offers real added value for readers. 

Ideally, they are unique and cannot be found on competing sites.

The challenge is to formulate it in a factual, helpful, and informative way:  Your content should not represent advertising for your online shop in the classic sense. Any link or mention of your brand should feel natural and relevant to the context ocof the content. 

In addition, the content on your website should ideally invite users to linger and encourage them to browse several other pages on your site. 

This way, you can optimise your bounce rate and increase the conversion rates of your shop. 

2. Target group-specific content

As already mentioned, content marketing also depends on addressing the right target group: 

  • Who is actually your target group? 
  • What is the purchasing behaviour of your target group? 
  • What problems or preferences do they have and how can you help them with your products? 

You should clarify all of these questions in advance before you start creating content. 

Corresponding keyword research is also useful: 

  • What is your target group looking for on Google etc.?  
  • What search intent is your target group pursuing? 

Once you know the search intent of your target group, you can produce content optimised for it. 

In this way, you not only ensure that your content is found by potential customers in the search results, but also increase the response among users. 

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3. Analysis and optimisation

As with many other things in the online world, publishing your content is often never “done”, especially if you're hosting the content.  

Regular analysis and optimisation are important if you want your content to continue to be well-received by Google and your target group.  

For example, search engines usually prefer new and up-to-date content and consistent crawling reveals this information to Google.

Also, keep an eye on current trends and developments within your industry, but also among your target group, and adapt your content accordingly. 

Conclusion 

Content marketing is an important measure to take when it comes to asserting yourself against the strong competition in e-commerce and strengthening the position of your brand. 

Content marketing enables online shops to reach their own target group directly - where users get information and make purchase decisions.  

Depending on the topic and industry, certain content marketing formats might work better for your target group during their customer journey.

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This article was originally published and translated from our German blog: Content-Marketing für Online-Shops: So erzielen Sie mehr Umsatz

29/11/23

Lena Wolff

Lena Wolff

Lena studied Multilingual Communication in Germany and now works in Content Marketing. She normally focuses on e-commerce and online marketing topics in the UK and DACH markets.

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