Planning to launch a new online store in 2020? Promoting a new website and managing an ecommerce website launch is an exciting time in any marketing strategy. Leveraging a wide range of tactics, tools, and channels in your arsenal, the key to success is a coordinated line of attack. Here are some essential things you need to know about successfully promoting an ecommerce website in 2020.
Without a strategy, nothing much will happen
The vast majority of websites go unnoticed. If you don’t plan to make a splash, it’s likely yours will suffer the same fate.
In order to get your new ecommerce store noticed, you need to have a strategy that covers the following areas:
Technical preparation (indexing, website speed, XML sitemap, hosting)
Content marketing (launch blog posts)
Branding & UX (user testing, user feedback)
SEO (testing the website, metadata, submissions)
PR (press releases, media relations)
Social media (launch strategy).
Make sure that your website is working to its maximum capability when you launch and that you have a good balance of content with which to launch.
Don’t just launch with landing pages and product descriptions, make sure that you have a good mix of blog posts live as well. (You should aim for about 10 blog posts minimum).
Don’t neglect simple things like your title tags and meta descriptions, and submit your new website on design forums and other relevant places to help it get indexed (picked up by search engines) faster.
Even if you’re not 100% sure about what keywords to use yet it’s a good idea to get something in place — even if it’s just instinctive and will need to be changed later in the function of SEO results.
It will take you a while to gain search traction
The harsh reality is that search engines will take a while to reward your new store with rankings. New domains are often treated with cautious distrust, and you have to be patient when it comes to chasing ecommerce SEO success.
That’s not to say your store won’t ever rank for its keywords, but it might take a while to build trust and authority in search engines.
Technical SEO tasks you can do to help the process along:
Install Google Analytics and Search Console
Submit an XML sitemap and upload it to Search Console
Link your new domain from your social profiles
Launch with a complete set of unique title tags & meta descriptions.
You need to also invest in content marketing and put out consistent, in-depth content to prove that you’re a credible source of information.
Target a wide range of topics and themes across your products and core keywords so that you can start to build a comprehensive content library — one of the most important SEO assets you can have as a new website.
Ads are great for instant results
Ads are an ecommerce entrepreneur’s friend. With instant results, ads are a great way to introduce your brand and products to the world and found your very own customer community.
Facebook ads are a perennial favorite with ecommerce brands thanks to their great targeting options but don’t just settle for the obvious. Maybe your customers will be on Pinterest or Instagram instead? The demographics of social media will have a big impact on where you do (and don’t) advertise.
Instagram ads for ecommerce brands come in multiple ad formats — from slideshow and photo ads to Story and video ads. Make the most of all the visual opportunities open to you and invest some of your launch budgets into creating attractive visuals for Instagram advertising.
As well as advertising on Instagram, you should definitely invest in organic Instagram as well. From great Instagram captions to commenting on relevant community #s, Instagram is a great place to launch a brand to the world.
Live video is your friend
The immediacy of going live is a great vehicle for creating hype and excitement about a new product or website launch.
Increase the intensity with escalating teaser videos and involve your community during the crucial build-up phase. Share the challenges you’ve faced and the mission behind your brand. Bring people with you on the launch journey to ensure maximum traction and loyalty when you finally launch. (Why not offer exclusive deals and one-off products to these crucial early adopters?).
Try Facebook lives, Instagram lives and other purpose-built channels (as well as YouTube) to figure out what makes the most sense for your community.
Use captions, subtitles and make the most of all the fun stickers on Instagram when uploading video content to your Story — and pin the best ones to your profile as highlights.
Your mailing list is your value
Building a mailing list can (and should) start well before you launch your website to the world.
An engaged mailing list is a really important marketing asset.
Email marketing has great ROI, and the ability to remarket to, and engage with, an email list of customers is an ecommerce business lifeblood.
Get more subscribers by giving away value in the form of exclusive content, offers and deals.
Make sure that you create a range of engaging email campaigns that tap into the seasons as well as individual buying cycles so that you can keep adding (and getting value) from your list as you grow.
Launching a new website is exciting and though there are a lot of technical and content considerations to get right, a big part of your launch should also be about having fun. All your hard work has paid off and you are finally ready to start selling from your website and engaging with your customer community. Pay attention to early feedback, and be ready to react and adjust accordingly. Have fun finding your tribe!
“Rodney Laws is an ecommerce expert with over a decade of experience in building online businesses. Check out his reviews on EcommercePlatforms.io and you’ll find practical tips that you can use to build the best online store for your business. Connect with him on Twitter @EcomPlatformsio.”