Content marketing should be a big part of your SEO and marketing plan.
To successfully rank for keywords, it’s important to create useful, SEO-friendly content. And that means you need to start blogging.
But if you’ve never run an eCommerce blog before, you may make some common mistakes. We’re here to help you identify these common mistakes, and ensure that you avoid them when you’re creating content for your blog.
This is one of the most common mistakes we see from new bloggers.
Your blog should be closely integrated with your eCommerce website – not a Frankenstein-looking, bolted-on WordPress integration that doesn’t look and feel like your site.
When you integrate your blog into the main navigation of your site, you benefit in multiple ways:
Here’s a great example from Au Fit Fine Linens, an online retailer specializing in bed linens and related products:
As you can see, the “Blog” nav item is integrated directly into the navigation menu.
And, once you click it, you’re brought to the initial blog page:
Users can easily navigate to different blog posts, sections, and topics to find what they’re looking for. Not only that, but the eCommerce navigation menu is still there – so after they do some reading, they can quickly get back to shopping.
This kind of seamless experience is exactly what you need to give your customers when you start blogging.
For more examples, we highly recommend checking out this blog post from Shopify.
Blogging and content production is a marathon, not a sprint.
Your goal should not be to create a half-dozen posts over the course of a month – then fail to upload any new blog posts for the next 6 months.
You don’t have to create a ton of content. Even one or two posts per month is plenty. But you have to be consistent. When a customer clicks on your blog, they want to see that it’s constantly being updated with new content – if the latest post was made six months ago, they may be less likely to believe that your content is a useful, reliable source of information.
In contrast, if you’re uploading product guides and information every month, they’ll see that you are dedicated to your blogging efforts – and are more likely to see your blogs as a source of high-quality information.
REI, an outdoor supply co-op, is a great example of how beneficial it can be to maintain a great content schedule:
It’s clear that their blog is a big focus. There have been three new posts in the last week alone, and scrolling further allows you to see even more blog posts from April.
Obviously, you won’t have the same resources to create dozens of high-quality posts per month. But as long as you remain consistent, your blog will benefit from regular updates, even if you can only do one post every few weeks.
Let’s continue to use REI as an example, here, because they have a great approach to eCommerce content writing.
Take a look at each one of the above blog posts.
They all have common themes – outdoor recreation and athletics, for example. But only one of them is directly related to REI products – and it is not just promotional, it’s informative. It’s not advertising REI extended sizes in order to sell them – but informing users about what sizes will be available. It’s informative, not promotional.
And this is exactly what you should aim for in your blog posts.
Do you want to link to your products? Of course! But your goal for your blog should not just be to boost sales. Your goal should be to be an informative resource that your customers come to trust.
Make your posts related to your product niche – but don’t be overly promotional or customers won’t bother visiting your blog. Your goal should be to add value with every post you make.
We see this all the time.
You want to rank for a bunch of keywords – so you should try to cram them all into the same post, right?
That’s “keyword stuffing,” and it’s not effective.
Jamming too many keywords into your articles makes them hard to read, and it doesn’t really help with SEO either. Google has methods to detect keyword stuffing and ignore duplicate keywords.
The best strategy is to choose one – or maybe two – keywords to focus in a particular blog post. This will ensure you can integrate them naturally into the text.
It’s important to understand “keyword density” here. This is the percentage of times a keyword is used in your copy. Simply divide the number of words in your copy by the number of times your keyword appears.
You should aim to stay under a 2% keyword density. A 500-word article, for example, should mention your keywords a maximum of 10 times.
Another good tip is to write a longer, more in-depth blog post about a particular keyword. The longer your post is, the more chances you have to integrate your keyword into your article naturally, without going over the industry-recommended 2% keyword density.
A lot of eCommerce entrepreneurs are wary of linking to any websites that could be considered a competitor. After all, you don’t want to send your customers to your competitors, do you?
Well, no. But often, you may find that a competitor or another company in your niche has written a guide that’s super-useful. And if that’s the case, you should definitely link to it in your content.
Want an example?
Look at this article you’re reading right now!
We’ve linked to a few websites that could be considered our competitors – like other digital agencies, and even Shopify, despite the fact that 121eCommerce focuses on Magento eCommerce development.
Why did we do that? Because those links are helpful, and because we think that it’s more important to give you plenty of useful information than it is to convince you to use our services.
Linking to external websites helps you build credibility with your customers, and if you link to someone else’s website, they may link to yours in return. In addition, as you continue to create useful content, there’s a good chance that other websites will follow suit – and start linking to your blog when they create content. That’s a good way to build up your website authority and SEO rankings.
Content marketing and blogging are not easy.
However, these five mistakes are very common among new eCommerce bloggers – and if you avoid them, you’ll definitely be starting out on the right foot. So give this article another read, and think about how you can use these tips while ramping up your eCommerce content strategy.