Do you want to attract new customers? Are you struggling to increase sales? Offering a discount is a simple, yet one of the most efficient ways to do that. Keep reading to learn what types of sales promotion marketers use and when.
Sales and discounts surround our everyday lives. You see them on billboards, shop windows, TV, and on social media. Have you ever wondered why? Because they work!
A discount not only works as a tempting offer that lets your business stand out from others but also serves as a beacon for consumers. After seeing an ad promising discounts, a person may remember it and go to your store when and if he or she decides to make the purchase. Simply because you offered a discount. So, it’s like saying, ‘What new clothes? Buy here!’
Those who sell products or services on the internet can benefit from sales promotion activity too. But before moving on to the types of sales promotion, let’s learn what objectives one can achieve by offering discounts.
Why do you need sales promotions?
To increase sales in general
This is the most obvious reason to start a sales campaign.
One could say that by cutting prices, you will be able to lure customers from competitors. But as a matter of fact, people seldom compare similar products from different shops unless it’s something complex and expensive like computer parts, bicycles, cars, etc. For example, when buying a scarf, you’d pay more attention to the design and quality rather than the price.
In these cases, discounts force people to think that this is a good opportunity they don’t want to miss. So, it’s not about saving $8 but rather about not regretting you didn’t.
To attract new clients
Marketers also offer discounts to new customers. Such people may get interested in your products, but they still have doubts. Letting them save a little money is a good way to stimulate them.
To collect emails
Any business uses email marketing which requires collecting potential customers’ emails. Simply asking them to subscribe to your blog or newsletter will hardly work because everyone knows you’re going to send tons of ads. But if you offer something valuable in exchange like a discount or coupon, the idea won’t seem so annoying anymore.
To stimulate repeat purchases
Yes, people who have purchased from you before need stimulation too. Using different types of sales promotion allows you to remind them of your online store. It’s like saying, ‘Hey, remember me? I got a discount for you!’
To introduce a new product
Special offers can also be aimed at promoting a specific product or service, usually a new one. It draws buyers’ attention to it and makes it tempting to buy the product.
You’ve probably tried some kinds of free samples before. This is the one. Although offering something for free is hardly possible in the dropshipping business, a little discount won’t hurt.
To stimulate sales during off-seasons
If you sell seasonal products in your online store, you know how hard it is to sell, say, Halloween goods in summer. So, make it beneficial to purchase seasonal products long before the season starts.
To increase customer loyalty
In this case, your goal is to express gratitude to regular customers. Thus, they’ll know you care about them and will come back more often. That’s why so many businesses have loyalty programs.
The simplest type of promotion is to cut prices and show them on your category and product pages. It’s the same as sticking a ‘20% off’ label to the price tag. This method is quite straightforward, yet efficient.
Note that the offer should be attractive enough to persuade customers it’s worth buying. A 3% discount can hardly do it.
2. Limited time offer
This method is basically the same as the previous one, except it highlights that the discounts won’t last long. More like ‘THE SALE’S GONNA END IN ONE HOUR! HURRY!!!’
This type of promotion is based on the sense of urgency which motivates people to make the decision faster and not to miss the opportunity.
However, if the time period is very short (one or two days), make sure to properly advertise the sale before it starts. Nobody will use the discounts if they don’t know about them.
To use the sense of urgency more efficiently, buy our Countdown Timer and Urgency add-ons for your dropshipping store.
3. Free shipping
Free shipping is a popular discount type often used by food delivery businesses and online stores. On the other hand, we strongly recommend dropshipping only from those AliExpress sellers who offer free or low-cost delivery.
However, if, for some reason, you charge for shipment, you can use this method as well.
4. Special prices
This method offers discounts but does it implicitly. Instead of just saying you cut prices, you offer a ‘special price’, which can have a heavier psychological impact on customers.
However, the method only works when you offer really low prices for something with clear value. Simply speaking, if customers have no idea whether the price is good or not, the trick won’t work.
Bundling includes several types of sales promotion based on the same idea: customers can benefit from buying more than one product. ‘Buy two at a discount’, ‘buy one and get one for free’ – this stuff can do wonders.
Product Bundle add-on is another useful tool for the owners of dropshipping stores. It allows you to create and manage 5 bundle types with no effort.
6. Contests & giveaways
Running contests and giveaways is a good way to engage the audience of your social media accounts and turn some of them into actual buyers. Make up an interesting competition and offer something as a prize – either a discount coupon or a gift.
7. Abandoned cart discounts
Sometimes buyers add products to the shopping cart but then change their minds and leave the site. Such carts are called abandoned carts. To return these customers, you can send them emails saying they’ve got goods they wanted to buy. But offering a discount will make it sound more convincing so sending a promo code along with the letter is a great idea.
Lastly, marketers often send promo codes and coupons to customers as a part of email marketing campaigns. It’s a simple and efficient way to inform clients of upcoming sales, seasonal discounts, special offers and new products, etc.
How to run a successful promotion
With so much to choose from, it can get quite difficult to focus on running the promotion itself. So, here are a few tips to run a successful sales promotion that will help attract new customers, and grow your business.
Set a clear objective
First and foremost, set a clear objective for your campaign. For example, is it to increase sales of a certain product, attract a new audience of potential customers, or promote your brand awareness.
Set goals and come up with a way to monitor and track the results, so that you can evaluate how successful the campaign was.
Determine the audience and what message they will receive
The key to a successful promotional campaign is to determine who are you trying to reach and their unique profile. What are their interests? Where do they spend their time? How do they behave?
Try to find out which message will speak to this audience of online users most effectively. However, don’t forget to keep the message simple and easy to understand.
Set your budget
First of all, your goal is to achieve maximum results with minimal costs. After you have a ready-to-go online store, most of your budget will be devoted to Facebook Ads, Google Ads, etc.
To wisely spend your budget, you need to pinpoint where the majority of your audience spends their time online and try to reach them through online promotions.
Understand the creative approach
There are three key points you must set right to make sure your promotional campaign is successful.
Your main customers see your campaign
Your audience are engaged in the campaign
Deliver the message across quickly and understandably
Keeping the message simple is very important. A common trait of online consumers is that it takes a few seconds to understand if they’re interested in the offer in front of them. The important thing to remember is to get your message across clearly and simply.
Evaluate the campaign
Once the campaign has ended, it’s the time to evaluate it. Evaluating a promotional campaign is very important and many businesses fail to properly evaluate the results and overall performance of the campaign.
Did the campaign reach its objectives? How did your customers react to your promotion? Compare to the objectives you’ve set before running the campaign and you’ll be able to fully understands how effective it was.
Be careful with sales
Whatever types of promotion you prefer, make sure not to overuse them.
First of all, discounts are always secondary. They’re designed to complement the basic marketing strategy as well as the original concept of a store but cannot replace them. In simple terms, a discount won’t help if the product is unwanted.
Secondly, offering sales too often causes addiction. Regular customers quickly get used to buying only during periods of large discounts. When it ends, they know that in a couple of weeks, they’ll be able to benefit from a sale again. As a result, they completely stop buying goods without a discount.
Nevertheless, these and other types of sales promotion are efficient tools for a variety of purposes. And if you want to build and run a successful online business, offering discounts from time to time is a must.
When it comes to starting your online business, the first step is always the hardest. Fortunately, if you know how to use Google Trends, you can make it much easier to make up your mind and put your worries and fears to rest.
If not, this article is going to let you figure it out!
Why you should use Google Trends
What is necessary for your business success? Breakthrough marketing? Great customer service? Of course, but… Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the Google founders, know it better than anyone else. It’s being tuned in to people’s needs.
Let’s wind back the clock to the 1990s when the Internet was an untapped goldmine nobody knew how to exploit. What would you do then? Right, you should go and place your flag there. In other words, you’d need to take the Internet and make it useful for people.
So, companies like Yahoo and Excite were the pioneers that had a hand in it. They worked on organizing the Internet so that people could easily find whatever was necessary for them.
However, the approach those companies took was aimed at keeping users on their own websites as long as possible rather than providing them with the relevant content.
Thus, the algorithms their search engines used weren’t really efficient. The results people got were often a bit strange and kind of useless.
So, when a Stanford student Larry Page woke up at night due to a dream he had, he was destined to succeed. The dream gave him an idea for the search engine algorithm. It was based on examining the links between the websites – backlinks – so that people could get the most relevant search results.
Page called his algorithm PageRank. And in 1998 along with Sergey Brin, they launched a website that employed it – Google.
A fun fact: if you type “Google in 1998” in the search field and click on “Search”, Google will change its layout to the one it used in 1998.
Page and Brin’s search engine easily won hearts and minds of Internet users and swept Yahoo and the other competitors aside.
The reason is simple. Google is the number one website because it gives people what they really want.
Indeed, if you know people’s needs, you can easily make your dropshipping business thrive. This way, you could find the best ideas for your store, pick out the best items and so on. But… how?
Google provides people with the most relevant information, but how could online entrepreneurs read customer mind and find out their needs? Actually, the answer is in the question! If you need information – go to Google. There, you can find a special tool that is going to help you out. It’s called Google Trends. By using this tool, you can make a reasonable decision about the niche for your online store, find the most demanded products to sell and discover the necessary keywords to refine your SEO.
So, let’s figure out how to use Google Trends and make your success closer.
How to choose a niche with Google Trends
The right niche for your online store is one of the most essential things for your business future. It defines the product range of your online store, the audiences you should target, and many other crucial things. But what is more important, your profit depends on the niche you choose. If you make the wrong choice, you’ll have to wind down your store, find a new niche and do everything all over again.
Since dropshipping is not an expensive business to run, it’s not a big problem. Yet, who likes to spend their time and effort in vain?
So, what’s the solution? You should go to Google Trends. This way, you can make sure that you won’t spit in the wind while choosing your niche. Let’s say you want to start an online store that is focused on art materials. You go to Google Trends and type in the search field “art materials”.
The result you see shows that it’s been a pretty stable and demanded niche for the last 12 months, with only minor falls in interest. If you want to see the bigger picture, you should zoom out and change the span from 12 months to 5 years or to the period from 2004 to the present day.
Now, you can see that the graph has its ups and downs. That means that this niche has its seasonal surges and dips in demand. So, you should be ready for this. The graph you see covers the whole world. And it can be enough for you to win customers from the USA, or Australia, or Spain, etc.
Use Google Trends to zero in on the United States, Canada, Brazil, or whatever country you’re planning to target. Compare the results and decide which market to focus on.
So, art materials could be a good option to choose for your niche. However, you may have some other ideas for your future store. Let’s say, it’s sportswear.
Which one is better?
Google Trends can easily give you the answer. Just type “sportswear” in the compare field on your right and hit “Enter” button.
Now, it’s as clear as day that sportswear is more trending in the USA. You can even see that it outperforms art materials in every state if you scroll down a bit.
But… does it mean that you should choose sportswear over art materials?
If you decide to sell sport clothing, you’re going to come up against Nike, Adidas and other famous brands. Whereas you won’t face such competition if you choose art materials.
So, when looking for a suitable niche, you need to bear in mind such a thing as the presence of powerful rivals. It could be tricky to beat them.
Let’s say, you’ve decided to open up an online store dedicated to cosplay. What products may do the trick?
Obviously, it must be the costumes people like dressing up in. And Google Trends can easily give you a clue on it.
When researching your niche potential, you should scroll down a bit to “Related queries”.
There, you can find what cosplayers have been looking for so far. Click on “fortnite cosplay”, for example.
So, you see that this query reached the peak of its popularity in September 2018. Since then, the interest has been going down with some small seasonal surges in demand.
This graph casts some doubt on the prospects of this product.
But, if you go through the other related queries and click on “nezuko cosplay”, you’ll see a way more promising picture.
You can add this type of products to your store without a shadow of doubt.
How Google Trends can help you improve your SEO
When you know what niche to choose and what products to add, it’s not difficult to find them.
You go to AliExpress and look for the items you need. Then, thanks to AliDropship plugin, you just press “Import” button and it’s in the bag.
However, after importing the necessary products to your store, you should work on your product pages. If you leave them as they are on AliExpress, customers are unlikely to come across them while exploring Google. Besides, it will look weird and put off your potential buyers.
If you’ve chosen handbags as a product for your store, just write it in Google Trends search field and go to “Related queries”. There, you can see what people type when searching for handbags.
Change “Rising” to “Top” like in the picture below and you’ll get the possible keywords you should work into the titles and descriptions of your products.
How Google Trends can help identify seasonal trends
When it comes to promoting your online business, most marketing specialists plan out their content plan well in advance. With Google Trends, you can plan out your content calendar and find the most popular keywords for certain time periods throughout the year.
Knowing upcoming trends can help you produce the most effective content plan that connects with the most highly searched topics during the most desired times of the year, such as the holidays. This will be a key aspect that will help your promotional campaign succeed during the right calendar window.
Once you’ve discovered the existing trends that relate to your niche, the next step is to create a marketing plan around those trends. This means optimizing your online store, promotional materials, social media, SEO, etc. according to those trends.
Use Google Trends to avoid temporarily popular keywords
Ecommerce entrepreneurs can face an often appearing dilemma: using words that are popular for a brief period of time. Using Google Trends, you can easily avoid this common mistake in a few simple steps.
Google Trends lift sidebar shows a “Year in searches” tab where you can search for the topic’s search interest within a specific time period. To find out if the word is popular momentarily or is a clear trend, set the time period to 12 months.
By setting this specific time period, you’ll be able to easily see certain spikes on the Google Trends graphic.
A great example is “fidget spinners”. The toy became popular in 2017, and by the end of the year, it quickly faded away. On the Google trends graphic, you can clearly see the time when it was at the peak of popularity.
If you want your online business to flourish, the connection between you and your customers is a must. Now, when you know how to use Google Trends, you can find out their needs and make a great leap forward in achieving success.
Are you looking to build an additional source of income? If you’re a creative person and enjoy an approach to work that requires at least some originality, then print on demand dropshipping is what you’re looking for. Let’s find out what print on demand means! Is it profitable? We’ll look at all the peculiarities you need to be aware of to create a successful online business.
What is print on demand?
Selling print on demand products is an easy way to start a business. Print on demand is an ecommerce business model where you work with a supplier to sell white-label products with your custom design. The supplier is responsible for making and distributing the customized products, while you promote and sell them in your online store.
What does the process of print-on-demand dropshipping with AliExpress look like?
The process is a simple one. First, you need to find a reliable supplier on AliExpress that deals print on demand goods and cooperate with them. Once you’ve found a reliable supplier, you can import their products to your online store.
Then the real fun begins. When a customer stumbles upon your store and finds a product they want to buy, they will place an order for that product. You receive the customers’ text or image via email, or live chat, and then resend it to the supplier via their AliExpress chat. It’s easy and free if you just use AliDropship+AliExpress. This way, you order this product from your supplier, and simply wait till it’s processed. When everything is ready, the supplier will send the package directly to your buyer.
It’s that simple! No need to order in bulk and maintain a stock of products. You don’t need to buy any equipment. Work with all kinds of products and easily customize them how you like.
3 advantages of the print on demand business with AliExpress
#1. Easy start
Starting a print on demand business doesn’t require a lot of investments: all you need is an idea and some enthusiasm to get started. If you decide to start a print on demand dropshipping business with AliDropship, you can get lots of tools to start your business with a bang. Custom and ready-made professional stores, promotional tools, etc. — you can find almost anything you need for a quick start.
#2. No inventory management
Since you will be working with the dropshipping business model, your supplier will handle the production side and the logistics. You will not need to store or keep any inventory. Instead, you’ll devote your time to other tasks.
#3. Time convenience
Since we’re on the topic of time, compared to other business models, your main tasks will consist of creating attractive designs and increasing your sales, and developing new promotional strategies.
Moreover, thanks to this business model, you can easily add or remove products and test which ones work out best.
What print on demand services other than AliExpress can I use?
Besides AliExpress, there are other options to start a print on demand business. But how do they compare with AliExpress? Let’s look at the most popular print on demand services you can use.
With Printful, a white-label service, you can easily start selling all kinds of products, like t-shirts, sweatshirts, hoodies, backpacks, mugs, and many others with your own logo and branding features.
Moreover, it is very similar to dropshipping in the sense that you don’t need to purchase any products upfront and you can sell the products with all the manufacturer tags completely removed. Furthermore, you can have the products shipped with your own branding packaging and logo.
However, even though there is a major upside, there are also downsides you need to consider.
You still need to create your online store on an ecommerce platform or marketplace on your own and connect it with Printful. Then, you’ll create your custom products and fill your store with them. After that, all you have to do is promote your store and wait for your customers to come to you.
What’s the downside, you may ask? Well, the downside of this service is that you have to pay for fulfillment (the base price of the product and shipping) each time an order is made in your store. Additionally, you pay for all the branding elements separately if you want them to be printed on the products — $2.49 per label and $2.95 per embroidered label.
Similar to Printiful, this is a white-label service, so the Printify brand won’t be featured on any of the products that will be shipped out.
However, it differs in the sense that there are lots of different options to choose who will be printing and sending out your products.
Each print provider offers a different product variety in terms of materials, the printing methods they use, the shipping rates, shipping process, and packaging.
What about the pricing?
Printify is unique in this regard and offers a monthly subscription plan for its users. There are several plans to choose from, a Free plan, a Premium plan for $24.99 a month, and an Enterprise plan with custom pricing.
Every plan has its own perks and benefits. For example, the Free plan offers to connect 5 unique stores per account and sell an unlimited number of Printify products. However, an upgraded plan allows to add more stores (up to 10) and offers additional discounts on the Printify products (up to 20%).
Keep in mind that you still have to create an online store separately from Printify and connect it.
Now that we’ve covered the main alternatives to starting a print on demand business, let’s go over AliExpress and what you can expect to find there.
Best print on demand product categories on AliExpress
AliExpress is one of the world’s largest online marketplaces. It is well known for its wide range of products. There are literally hundreds of thousands of products from different categories for you to choose from and build your online store around. That’s especially helpful if you’re looking to build an online dropshipping store.
Let’s look at the best products you can integrate into your online store to use as a print on demand products.
The home niche
Some items you may include in your store are custom reusable bags, key hangers, carpets, towels, shower curtains, blankets, pillows, and even bedding sets. Some of the most popular products are custom-painted canvases and paintings in general.
Drinkware and mugs
Another classic option for print on demand stores is drinkware and more specifically, mugs. The best part is that there are plenty of custom mugs suppliers on AliExpress.
Another item that’s in demand is clothing embroidery patches. Or how about a simple custom stamp?
Have a special occasion coming up? How about a custom wax seal stamp?
There are even customizable wooden crafts. For example, you can order a customized wood wine stopper. There are also different types of custom wooden decorations you can order for any occasion.
Kitchen products and essentials
There are lots of people who like to customize the look of their kitchen and all of the essentials. For this category of people, you can list custom wooden or rubber coasters. You can even find suppliers who sell customizable tableware with engravings. How about custom cooking aprons?
A very popular niche category is pets. There are literally millions of pet lovers among online consumers. Among the most popular goods you can find are custom dog harnesses, pet tags, personalized engraved collars, personalized toy storage, custom dog hoodies and coats, custom pet bed mats, personalized feeding bowls, custom car seat covers, etc.
Clothing and apparel
Want to sell custom clothing? On AliExpress, you can find a variety of suppliers who offer products with your design: T-shirts, hoodies, caps, hats, etc.
Want personalized hangers? You can find them on AliExpress!
Jewelry and accessories
How about personalized jewelry and accessories? Bracelets, rings, necklaces, etc. are a great choice. There are thousands of items listed on AliExpress you can seamlessly import to your online store.
A unique category of items we would like to highlight is custom neon signs. They are very popular among online shoppers.
How to start a print on demand business?
With such a vast range of products, it can be difficult to choose what exactly it is you want to sell. How do you start a print on demand business? First, you need to focus on what products you want to sell.
You might be thinking: “Do I import several categories of products?” or “Should I focus on one niche-specific product category?” Don’t worry, we have the answer!
Based on our experience in the ecommerce industry and our time-tested ideas, we recommend you to focus on one niche-specific category of products. Here is why.
Much easier to find the necessary products
Having a store with a wide variety of products is not always good. Even though it offers lots of options, some online consumers are less likely to search for what they are looking for. However, in a niche-specific store, the search is much easier, faster, and doesn’t require much effort to find what you’re looking for.
That’s why in some cases customers prefer a store dedicated to a specific niche where they can effortlessly find exactly what they’re looking for.
Niche stores provide a better customer experience
If you’re dealing with a wide range of products, you’re required to have extensive knowledge and know the specifics and details of each product offer.
However, dealing with a limited category of products, especially one you’re passionate about, you can offer a better customer experience, thus creating a special customer-friendly atmosphere.
Furthermore, having a store focused on a single niche category creates a more trustworthy appearance for online consumers.
For any online consumer, it’s important to know that the seller is an expert in his field of work and can provide knowledge about his product offerings. Especially if you have chosen a niche you are very familiar with and passionate about. Then you quickly answer any questions from your potential customers.
It’s more enjoyable to navigate through a niche store
Niche-specific stores usually create a special atmosphere around their theme of products. In return, this attracts potential customers and provides them with a much more enjoyable experience navigating through the store.
A huge role for these kinds of online stores plays the layout and the overall design. They can easily motivate customers to make a purchase and return for future purchases.
Once you’ve chosen what products you’re going to sell, what should you do next?
How to find a reliable print on demand supplier on AliExpress
Since we’re incorporating the dropshipping business model, a lot of responsibilities and work in general is going to lay on your supplier. So, here are the things you need to pay special attention to if you want to find a reliable and trustworthy supplier.
The first thing you want to point your attention to is the supplier’s store rating or its positive feedback. The rating can tell a lot about how professionally the supplier works with their customers. In general, it’s better to look at a rating that’s more than 90%.
A high rating is a clear sign that the supplier is worth working with.
How long the supplier has been active on AliExpress
AliExpress allows users to see how long the seller has been actively doing business on this platform.
The longer the seller has been active, the more reliable they are.
The customer feedback
There’s nothing that can be more trustworthy than the feedback of the customers that have previously purchased something from the seller.
To view customer feedback, simply click on the reviews under the page of the product to learn more about the product. To learn more about the feedback about the supplier, go to the store page and click on the Feedback tab. There, you’ll be able to become familiar with the feedback about the supplier during a recent time period.
How do I contact the supplier?
We have received lots of questions about how to properly contact the supplier and when is the best time to do it.
It’s actually much easier to do than many think.
Most print on demand suppliers have a “contact” button. By pressing this button, you will contact the supplier directly and will be able to upload or specify the design of the product.
Another question we get is what is the best time to contact the supplier.
The best time to contact the supplier is only when a product has already been ordered from your online store. This way, you do not have to pre-order any products beforehand or keep any products in stock.
Is white labeling available on AliExpress?
First, let’s clear up what white labeling is. White labeling is when a product is made by one company but sold by other companies under their own brands. So, is it possible to white-label products on AliExpress? Technically speaking, yes.
There is an abundance of AliExpress suppliers who offer to put your design on their clothing products.
However, most AliExpress suppliers only allow you to publish your custom prints on their products, without allowing you to put any brand labels on them.
To answer your question, yes, white labeling is allowed on AliExpress. However, do not expect the suppliers to attach any branding material to the products.
So, let’s go into more detail: how will the print on demand process with AliExpress look like exactly?
How print on demand dropshipping works with AliExpress
First and foremost, it’s important to make it clear what kind of print on demand business you will start.
The first option of print on demand business you can start is the creation of your own unique designs on various products. If you’re going to start this kind of business, you need to be aware of how to create your own designs or use other applications to purchase ready-made designs and use them on the products.
The second way to utilize the print on demand model is to list the products that are offered on the seller’s page on AliExpress. This way, your customers will be choosing the ready designs that the supplier can do.
If you’re going with the second option, then you shouldn’t experience any problems importing the products of your supplier, since the AliDropship plugin allows you to seamlessly transfer products from AliExpress directly to your online store.
However, how do you upload your own custom products to your online store?
In all actuality, it all depends on the owner of the store. If you have ready designs for your products, then you can just upload them to your online store. Or you can upload the supplier’s basic images.
Start promoting your print on demand store
When your store is filled with products, now is the time to start promoting it. First and foremost, it is important to note that the majority of your target audience is active online. That means that your promotional campaigns will all be held on various online platforms.
Therefore, here are some essential steps you need to follow to promote your store online.
Social media promotions
The best way to find your target audience is through different social media platforms. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter — you have to build a presence on all the big platforms to successfully reach your audience and promote your product offers.
What’s more, is that Facebook and Instagram will serve as your primary advertising destinations where you will create various ad campaigns and promote your online store.
SEO optimization remains one of the most common strategies in ecommerce. To make sure your store is ranked higher in the search engine, you must implement all the SEO strategies, such as keyword research, on-page SEO, off-page SEO, and so on, to optimize your online store and attract more traffic.
If you’re a social media enthusiast, you should consider influencer marketing. To put it simply, it is when you find and reach out to an influencer with a large number of followers to promote your products. This way you’ll be able to boost the recognition of your online store and get a strong word of mouth.
Find related forums and groups
Many many different types of groups and forums can be related to your specific niche. There you can find your target audience, interact with potential buyers, and advertise your products.
How to process a purchase of a print on demand product on your online store
When you attract customers to your online store, you need to understand how to handle the purchase process.
Regardless of the way you handle your print on demand business, to make sure the process goes smoothly every time, you have to get busy and write the supplier yourself. Let’s break it down in an example.
Let’s say you get a purchase request for one of the products listed on your website. Your next step is to contact the AliExpress supplier.
Go to the supplier’s AliExpress page and click on the “Contact Seller” tab. There, make sure you’ve selected the right product and upload a picture of your design. Then send the message to your supplier.
After that, the rest of the job is on the supplier. He will be responsible for making the custom product and sending it to the customer. You, on the other hand, will be responsible for customer service.
Print on demand dropshipping: conclusion
A print on demand business allows you to easily build your own online business with minimal investments. Much like dropshipping, you only need a website and a reliable supplier.
This business model is great for people who want to showcase their creative side and want to build an income on it.
It has lots of benefits, low investment, and thus, low risk. Once you have a design, the products are easy to create, and their making, shipping, and storage processes are taken care of. All you have to do is create the designs, find a target audience, and promote your products.
If you want thousands of people to find your dropshipping store and to place their orders, then, you need to make it easy for search engines to locate this site and show it to the Internet users who are looking for something similar.
The higher your webstore positions are, the sooner the users will see your webstore on the search engine results page – and who, indeed, would click on the 7th or 9th Google page while looking for something? (Only a student writing a thesis, perhaps, but that’s a whole different story).
So, as a dropshipping store owner, you have a very clear goal: to achieve the best possible result for your main store keyword. Let’s see if you have already taken all the necessary steps – our eCommerce SEO checklist will help you out with this.
Ecommerce SEO Checklist: are my keywords figured out?
Keywords are the basis, the foundation, the most crucial part of your search engine optimization strategy.
If your keywords are chosen correctly, you won’t have troubles attracting the desired audience to your store. It means that the understanding of your main and related keywords is the first step towards optimising your store for search engines.
#1 I know what’s my target keyword
The target keyword is the absolutely main keyword that will be used on every page of your store in its original or modified form. Most likely, you will further transform it and add 2-3 more words to it: this way, the target keyword will be a part of all the supportive longer keywords that are typically used for category pages and product pages.
To identify your target keyword, imagine that you need to explain your store product in 3-4 words: it will be a starting point for you.
For example, let’s suppose you’re a fan of outer space, and you decided to build your dropshipping store around this specific niche.
For a start, let’s try the following keyword: space room decor. To find out if it’s a good choice, we will use Google keyword planner.
As you can see on the screenshot above, my account isn’t active (which means it has 0 money on it and can’t yet be used to run paid ads), but anyway, it still works, and I can view the essential statistical data through it. In other words, you can simply register here as a private individual and skip all the fields that ask you to provide billing/company information. It will be enough to get access to the stats for your keywords research.
But what do we see? The planner doesn’t show any relevant keywords at all!
If you get a similar poor result, don’t worry. Take a look at the ‘Location’ and ‘Language’’ sections. In my example, the country is Vietnam, and the language is Vietnamese – but the language of the ‘space room decor’ phrase is English! No wonder the system can’t detect anything suitable.
To get correct results, specify the target country and set the necessary language – surely, it should match the language of your keyword.
This time, I’ve tried the United States and the English language: as you can see on the screenshot below, the range of results immediately got much wider.
But, the results table still isn’t perfect. By default, the system shows the keywords by relevance, but it’s much more convenient to sort them by average monthly searches.
This way, you will easily pick the keywords with the most favorable number of searches: if you want to succeed and be competitive, it’s better to concentrate on the keywords with 1K-10K monthly searches.
Let’s pick the ‘space room decor’ keyword: it describes the main store idea, and it’s easy to transform it and complement with other words, so, it will be possible to use it across the webstore. Plus, it has 100-1K monthly searches, which means this niche is quite specific, but at the same time, not really narrow – this way, you will deal with competition just fine.
Seems like the main target keyword is finally found!
#2. I know what are my additional keywords
One keyword is not enough – it’s necessary to have a bunch of related phrases because they will be required to make other in-store amendments:
To come up with enough ideas for additional keywords, feel free to use the following strategies:
Look through the ideas suggested by the system
As you have already noticed, Google Keyword planner shows you a pretty impressive list of the keywords that are somehow related to your initial query, so check the suggestions that have an appropriate number of average monthly searches, and pick the ones that might be useful for your store.
If you don’t think you’ve generated enough additional options, try SEMRush service: it also shows a range of keywords related to the initial search query.
By the way, this awesome service also shows the websites that Internet users see when they search for this exact words combination.
In other words, you see your main and direct competitors – surely, it gives you the opportunity to research them and to do better 🙂
Think of synonyms and related objects/concepts
If you’re considering outer space to be the main store idea, you can try experimenting with related notions such as galaxy, universe, moon, planets, Milky Way, etc. Try different combinations and check them all for relevance and competitiveness – this is how you will find out whether you really can use these new word combinations as your supporting keywords.
Use Google Autocomplete function
If you can’t come up with any clever ideas of a good synonym, try searching the main word in Google and look at what this search engine can offer you. Maybe, you will stumble upon an idea that you have never considered before.
Here is another thing that is absolutely great about these Google suggestions: if they are shown automatically, the system already knows these concepts are related. So, chances are, Google will scan and rank your website in a more favorable way.
Use Google Related search field
Here is yet another way to use Google search for your benefit. On the bottom of the first search results page, you typically see something like this:
It means that people looking for outer space decor ideas also make these exact search queries, and do this commonly. In other words, Internet users type these word combinations in the Google search bar quite often, and that’s exactly what you need! By exploring this page section, you both get an idea of typically demanded products and get the opportunity to narrow down your keyword – which, obviously, makes it more specific and therefore, more likely to convert better.
Use AliExpress autocomplete function
Most likely, you will be using AliExpress to find suppliers and identify the best products for your dropshipping store. Surely, it is a good idea to check what exactly is offered by the sellers on the platform.
As you can see from the screenshot above, quick research of AliExpress products gives you a range of ideas not only about the existing items and possible product categories, but favorable keywords as well.
Okay, so, at this point, you have one main and super important keyword that will be featured practically everywhere, and about 10-12 supporting keywords that are also related to your business niche. Now, it’s time to put them into practice!
#3. My store structure matches my keywords
You weren’t researching all these keywords just for fun, right?
Your task now is to create a logically organized webstore structure. If the pages are arranged wisely, it is much easier for search engines to scan the website and assign a higher ranking to it.
Roughly speaking, you need to plan the hierarchy of the pages depending on their keywords:
Homepage is built around the main keyword
Every category page contains a related keyword that suits this particular category
Every single product page uses an even more narrow keyword that fits this exact item perfectly
The logic behind this hierarchy is simple: first, your store visitor (or the search engine scanning your website) sees a page that is based on the most searched and most demanded word combination. Then, as your guests go further and browse more and more pages, they see subcategories that have much more specific keywords (the ones that are not searched on a too frequent basis), and eventually, they come across product pages which, typically, have the keywords with the lowest amount of searches.
#4. I don’t use keywords too often
The next point in our eCommerce SEO checklist is related to being careful with how often you use a certain keyword.
It’s totally Ok to use various keywords to improve SEO for eCommerce websites. After all, you want your online store to rank as high as possible with as many keywords as you can. But what is not Ok is to use too many keywords.
This phenomenon is called “keyword stuffing”. Simply put, it’s when you use one and the same keyword again and again on the same page. One can say a page is “stuffed” with a keyword if:
The phrase is repeated again and again when there’s no need to do it;
The keywords used are not related to the topic of the page;
The keywords are used out of context;
The author inserted blocks of the same keywords.
A few years ago, such an approach would actually work pretty well. But nowadays search engines understand that you’re trying to take the easy route to promote website pages. That is to optimize pages without filing them with valuable content but stuffing them with keywords instead. And it can actually kill your previous SEO efforts!
Ecommerce SEO Checklist: is my store convenient for visitors?
Now, search engines are more or less ‘happy’ with your store, and this fact increases your chances to achieve higher positions in Google. But, apart from machines, there are also real people who visit, navigate, and use your store!
Your next step is to make sure that your store visitors are satisfied with the user experience, and SEO plays a huge role in it.
#5. It’s easy to navigate my site
If your store visitor can’t understand which page to view and what button to click, you won’t see this person making a purchase for you – a confusing store structure is one of the most common dropshipping mistakes. This is why it is crucial to make sure that:
The categories are arranged and filled in a logical general-to-specific order
As a rule, you start with a broad category, and fill it with more narrow subcategories. Ideally, you should put them in a decreasing order: each new subcategory is more narrow than its ‘parent’ category.
The names of categories and subcategories match the content of these pages
For example, it’s not a good idea to name your category ‘Outer Space Beddings’ if it contains pillow cases, bed sheets, blanket covers, curtains, and towels – it’s better to write ‘textiles’ instead of ‘beddings’.
All the pages are linked to one another whenever possible
When 2 pages are interlinked, it gives both of them a chance to slightly improve their rankings. Plus, it allows your store visitor to easily go from one page to other ones.
#6. I have improved the site speed
If it takes your store, let’s say, 10-15 seconds to load, this is not only really annoying for your website visitor – it is also bad for the amount of the orders placed, and unfavorable for SEO. The following steps can be taken to improve the situation:
Check the current loading speed
Services like SEO SiteCheckup let you run site loading speed tests for free. With their help, you can find out how long an average user has to wait until your website loads completely.
Switch to a better hosting
If your webstore doesn’t respond as quickly as you’d like, start the improvements with the hosting change. A good hosting solution is powerful enough to process and allow all the operations taking place on your website.
Reduce image sizes
Consider this: does it make any sense to upload a 1600×1200 picture on your website if you know for sure you’ll display it as an 800×600 one?
If you need large pictures to showcase tiny product details, go for them. At the same time, don’t forget to resize the more ‘basic’ pics that don’t contain super small elements. It might be a good idea to choose a unified image size and stick to it while editing in-store pictures.
#7. I have optimized videos and images
It’s not difficult to guess that users today perceive visual information much better than texts and numbers. Therefore, it’s really a good idea to use videos and images on a website, and it’s a must for an eCommerce site with dozens of products to showcase.
What you may not know is that search engines see videos and images too. And that’s the next point in our eCommerce SEO checklist.
When optimizing videos and images, pay attention to the following.
Name files properly
You may think that it doesn’t really matter how you name a file as long as it works properly of the page. So, it’s Ok to name it 0123.jpg, for example. Well, that’s wrong!
Whenever you upload a file, you do so along with its name. And search engines actually see it. Therefore, we recommend naming them in a way that describes what’s in the picture or on the video.
Write ALT texts
All videos and images have ALT features – short texts that describe what’s there. These texts can be read by both users and search engines. If written properly, there’s a chance your product image, for example, will show up in someone’s search results.
When writing an ALT text, try describing what you see. For example, you can write: “An image of a red and green Christmas-themed sweater with a reindeer on the front side”.
Compress files as much as possible
I’ve already mentioned this in the previous section of our eCommerce SEO checklist. You should improve your site’s speed as much as possible, which is why you should compress all files including videos and images. Just make sure their quality doesn’t drop too much. Remember, they should look on the screen, and there’s no point improving the speed if the quality of the images will scare away potential customers.
Ecommerce SEO Checklist: are my store elements SEO-friendly?
When it comes to optimizing separate pages, surely, there are some universal rules for all of them. Whichever page you’re improving, you will definitely take several identical steps:
Set the focus keyword
Include the keyword in the page URL
Make sure that the keyword is also mentioned in the page title
Write a long meta description (up to 320 characters) that contains the same keyword
Make sure that there is at least 1 subheading on the page that uses the same keyword
Make sure that only one subheading on a page is marked as H1 (the most important subheading type) and also contains the page keyword
Take a look at the example screenshot below.
This is the section that you typically see at the bottom of every page of your store when you are logged in.
Here, you start with specifying the focus keyword: write the phrase you’ve chosen for this page.
Then, click the ‘Edit snippet’ button to change the page URL, Title, and Meta description.
Make sure that all the elements contain the keyword you have set for this page, save your progress, and don’t forget to check the ‘Analysis’ section: it gives you hints on the ways to improve the page further.
These steps are necessary for any and every page on your website – still, some pages require very special treatment and some additional efforts. Let’s go through them!
#8. I have optimized the Home Page
Different SEO gurus have varying opinions on home page optimization. Still, we can recommend taking these 2 actions:
In your focus keyword for the home page, write the maint target keyword AND your brand/store name – divide them with a comma
While writing texts for this page, make sure they are valuable for your store visitor: explain who you are, what you sell, and how your buyer will benefit from you. The example on the banner below will give you a general idea.
#9. I have optimized Category pages
Category pages are built around more specific keywords – so, don’t forget to make them featured in the on-page text and subheadings!
The example below is not a really good one (the text should be much longer), but still, it gives you a general idea of what you should do.
Ideally, you should create a text containing at least 300 words, but the more the better. If the category contains different sub-categories of products, it’s a good opportunity to use a number of additional keywords. This is how you can cover more potential search queries that will lead users to this page.
On top of that, such texts let you show your expertise in this particular field of knowledge. If possible, don’t simply tell site visitors what kind of products they can find here, how long delivery will take, and so on.
Use this opportunity to tell something important to people interested in these products. If the category page contains home improvement tools, tell visitors how to use them (in general of course). If you sell pet feeders, explain what types there are and what pros and cons each of them has.
You don’t have to go into detail, but it’s a good idea to provide valuable information for potential buyers who may lack knowledge in this particular area.
#10. I have optimized Product pages
Typically, a product page is a place that influences buying decisions most heavily.
Plus, it is also the page with the most specific and narrowly targeted keywords that are likely to show the best conversion rate among all the other page types.
Here you want to share as many details as possible. On the one hand, this is where customers want to see all the specifications: size, color, weight, materials the item is made of, etc. Don’t forget to use the measurement system used in the country of your target audience. If you sell to the US, use feet, inches, etc. Selling to Europe, use meters, kilograms, etc.
If possible, describe the benefits of using the product. While the specifications can be considered as the product’s features, benefits must tell a potential buyer about how his or her life will improve after purchasing the item.
And don’t be afraid to insert a promotional text before the specifications, especially if you sell a product with purely emotional value and no useful features.
#11. I have optimized my internal site search
Imagine a person visits your website looking for a product. He/she gets to a product page but doesn’t really like this particular item. The visitor wants to take a look at similar goods on your site and goes to the search bar. And doesn’t find anything, which makes them leave immediately.
The problem is you did have the item that the visitor was looking for, except they couldn’t find it because you didn’t optimize your internal site search properly.
About 30% of eCommerce customers use internal site search. Moreover, such visitors are 2-3 times more likely to convert. So, taking good care of this part of your website is very important.
When people search for something, they often misspell or use synonyms or abbreviations. Keep that in mind when optimizing your internal search. A good idea is to use Google Analytics to understand what keywords site visitors use. But it’ll take time before you can gather this kind of statistic.
Alternatively, you can come up with your own ideas before launching your dropshipping store.
#12. I have resolved 404 errors and warnings
Another important thing in our eCommerce SEO checklist is to make sure your site won’t show error messages to visitors – especially 404 messages.
404 error means the site page doesn’t exist anymore. I’m sure you’ve seen such pages before. I’m also pretty sure it wasn’t a good experience. After all, if something is missing on a website, there’s definitely something wrong with it.
Any kind of error message will most likely arouse mistrust, which will lead to profit losses. So, it’s important to resolve these issues.
404 errors can occur for a number of reasons:
After changing the permalink of one of your pages;
After removing content from your webstore;
A brokent or incorrect link that leads to another websote.
The easiest way to fix it (and never show this message to site visitors) is to use a 301 redirect. This type of redirect means that a page “moved permanently” to another place and is recommended for SEO.
Whenever a user or search engine tries to open a certain URL, the 301 will automatically redirect them to a new URL.
Now, as you completed this eCommerce SEO checklist, you know how to make sure that your dropshipping store is perfectly optimized to attract tons of buyers and generate impressive profits. Take the action and benefit from the long-term results!
Wouldn’t you like your order count to be a bit bigger? What do you do? Here are 25 tips on how to raise your online store sales.
First, remember that all great businesses start small. Steve Jobs and his partners started in a garage. Same goes for Amazon. Franklin Mars, the creator of world renowned Snickers and Milky Way, used to sell candies at a small shop.
Any successful business you know of had to be manually developed, and your online store is no exception. Use the following ideas to increase sales!
1. Improve the design of your online store
Design issues are a common problem, especially among newbies. Any website owner wants to make it look good. However, beautiful doesn’t mean simple. And simplicity is what customers expect from your online store.
4. To increase your online store sales, offer vouchers and coupons
Has it happened to you? You find a really good online store and a product you may want to buy. But you get assailed by doubts. In this case, all you need is a small push. After getting a discount coupon in your inbox, you might change your mind and make the purchase.
Each and every step your potential buyer has to make during the checkout process is an obstacle. And with each obstacle, the chances of losing the customer rise.
Make the purchase process as simple as possible. Remove all unnecessary fields, remove obligatory registration, and remove anything that might distract clients on their way to the purchase.
6. Show customer testimonials
To improve your online store sales, you need to win your clients’ trust. And there’s nothing better than customer testimonials!
When we buy something, we often ask our friends about their experience with this or a similar product or service. So seeing that someone has actually bought the product and is happy with the purchase is the best promotion ever.
When selling, do not just offer products. Offer guarantees and safety. Return policy is highly important in ecommerce.
Whenever I purchase something online, I want to be absolutely sure I can get my money back if something goes wrong or I’m not happy with the purchase.
Don’t worry about having to refund often. With the due approach, you can avoid most of these situations.
8. Always answer your online store clients
Nowadays communication is one of the key success factors in business. So talk to your customers, answer their questions and complaints. Do not be rude, do not blame your clients even if it’s really their fault. Having them come back again and again is better than fooling them once.
9. Show product benefits
Do not sell products. Sell the benefits they offer!
When I buy headphones, the benefit I get is the sound quality. When I buy a cup, the cup’s size and shape I’m concerned about. Or it’s the print on the cup if I buy merchandise.
It’s a popular trick to increase your online store sales based on psychology. If a customer is having doubts, tell him or her that there’s a time limit on a discount offer. It stimulates people to make decisions quickly so as not to lose the opportunity. To do that, use a countdown timer.
11. Make it scarce
There’s a similar trick to motivate website visitors. Let’s imagine I’m thinking of buying this super cool hoodie, but I’m not sure I really need it. But then I notice that there are only 5 hoodies left in stock. And here’s the choice – either I buy now or I may regret not doing so later.
Although you have plenty of goods in stock, adding a false number often works well for driving sales up.
12. Do email marketing
Do you know online shoppers who have no email address? Me neither.
Any online store has a list of their customers’ emails. You get them during the checkout process, and there are other ways to create such lists. But how do you use them?
Email marketing can work wonders if properly applied. It’s not just a tool to tell your clients about what’s happening on your website. Email marketing can drive your sales up too. This article selection will show you how to do it like a pro!
13. Try cross-selling
Cross-selling is a marketing technique based on satisfying customers’ complementary needs.
For example, I’m about to buy a set of whiskey glasses. And before I check out, the shop also offers me an ice tray.
The point is there’s a high chance I’ll buy both. If the customer is about to buy something, he or she is likely to also purchase a related item. Often people are going to buy additional items anyway so cross-selling works as a well-timed help.
14. Experiment with up-selling
A similar technique that often gets confused with the previous one is called up-selling. Unlike cross-selling, this one offers customers to replace a product they want with a more expensive (and better) version.
If I’m looking for a chair and got to a product page, the store can offer me another chair for a higher price. Yes, it’s more expensive. But it can have features the cheaper version doesn’t, and I might want the better one.
What would you prefer – a cheaper low quality product or a pricier high quality one? And what if I offer you yet another, even pricier option?
According to statistics, people are more likely to choose a mid-tier option. It’s probably because a low-tier product seems like trash while a high-tier one is regarded as too expensive. So the middle price is just what you need!
You can add similar products with higher and lower prices in order to bring customers to buy the goods in the middle. This technique is called ‘decoy pricing’. Read more tips on pricing in this article.
16. Create a buyer persona
A buyer persona is a generalized representation of your average or ideal client. You could say, it’s the same as your target audience, i.e. your potential and actual customers.
First of all, such content attracts visitors and works as a good sign for search engines. Second, it’s your chance to show what you know about the stuff you sell.
People tend to buy things more eagerly from someone who’s an expert in the given field or shares the same hobby. I’d prefer buying camping gear from a store owner who’s clearly an outdoors fan just like me!
18. Make mobile your priority
More than half of online purchases are made through mobile devices. And if you want to increase your online store sales, make sure your website looks good on smartphones and tablets.
19. Perform split testing
Another term used for it is ‘A/B testing’. In short, it’s a technique to try out two or more conflicting titles, designs, navigations, etc. These versions are shown to equal numbers of random users, and after a while, you can see which option works better.
You can never tell for sure what will work and what will not. So split testing is an effective way to improve your store.
20. Use social media
Today, millions of people consume content on social networks. In some cases, people see social media not only as places for communication or entertainment but also as online marketplaces. And that’s another opportunity to increase your online business sales.
First of all, consider paid advertising on such platforms as Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter – whichever suits your business best. Advertising can be costly. Besides, its efficiency depends heavily on your understanding of the target audience, the benefits of your own product, the budget you can afford, and promotion skills.
Nevertheless, if you do everything right, the result can boost sales considerably.
But don’t use social media for advertising only. When growing an online business, you want to build a community around your brand or niche. And that’s another huge opportunity offered by social networks.
Create a social media page and post regularly. Provide followers with both useful and entertaining content. Talk to your potential customers, answer their questions, and ask yours. By talking to your followers, you can raise your brand awareness, build trust, and eventually increase online sales.
Usethe Social Rabbit add-on for growing your online business on social networks. It will help you manage several accounts, automatically publish posts, follow and unfollow other accounts, and many more.
21. Send abandoned cart emails
I’ve already mentioned how to sell products online with the help of email marketing. One of the ways to use this technique is to remind site visitors of the purchases they didn’t complete.
Sometimes, potential buyers visit a store, browse the catalog, pick one or two products, add them to the cart but never finish the checkout process. The reasons can be different. The person might have changed their mind, or decided to postpone the purchase, or didn’t like the final price or delivery time. It could be that he/she simply didn’t have time to complete the purchase because of unexpected but more important issues.
No matter what, you can still get these buyers back by sending them emails that will remind them of the items they wanted to purchase. Did you know that 48% of “serial abandoners” will come back to buy the product when remarketed?
It’s also a good idea to offer a discount or another incentive.
Another frequent reason why businesses lose potential customers is that people simply can’t pay for your products. Not because they don’t have enough money but because they can’t use the only payment method available to them.
For example, if I can’t (or don’t want to) use my debit card but would like to pay with PayPal, I’ll probably leave your site when I see that you don’t accept PayPal.
So, if you want to increase your online store sales, make sure to offer as many payment options as you can.
23. Target Facebook lookalike audiences
Despite many drawbacks, Facebook is undoubtedly a wonderful advertising platform with lots of effective tools for online product promotion. One of these tools is the ability to target lookalike audiences, or lookalikes.
When you start advertising on Facebook, you can target certain groups of users who share certain interests or demographics. Some of them will show no interest in your ads, some will visit the site but will make no purchases, and a few will buy a couple of products.
These people (who made a purchase) are definitely the ones you want to target. How? When you get enough of such buyers, Facebook can analyze their demographics and behavior and create a lookalike audience. It’s an audience consisting of users who are similar to the ones it was based on.
This way, you can target millions of new users and thus increase your online sales.
24. Send free samples to influencers
One of the popular online sales techniques used by ecommerce businesses is influencer marketing. In addition to building your own community on a social network or YouTube channel, you can also ask another popular influencer to advertise or mention your product or brand.
You don’t have to get in touch with a celebrity to benefit from this marketing strategy. A person who has hundreds of thousands of followers will hardly be interested in such an offer. But the good thing is people nowadays tend to trust micro influencers more than celebrities. So, it is even more beneficial to contact a person
So, if you manage to find a person working in the same or related niche and convince them to mention your store, you get access to his/her audience in addition to yours.
To get more sales, try sending that influencer a sample product. What he or she will do with it depends on what kind of product it is. But it’s very important to be creative here.
25. Be patient
As you can see, there are lots of strategies and techniques to increase sales. However, many of them bring postponed results or may not work at all. So do not expect them to solve all your problems at once.
Instead, try them out one by one. Keep testing new strategies and solutions. Implement what worked and abandon what didn’t. Be patient and improve your store step by step. A little bit here, a little bit there. Over time, you’ll see your online store sales go up.
Now, you know what to do if your online store sales don’t make you happy! Stick to this action plan, and see your dropshipping business performance improving gradually.
How do I find site visitors? How do I drive real free traffic to my website? Here are the most efficient free traffic sources you can use for the benefit of your business! Look through this list and choose the options that suit your personal skills the most.
It’s not a secret at all: the more people you attract to your store, the more orders you’ll receive, and the higher profits you’ll get. Obviously, it works best when your store is optimized to help you enjoy the highest conversion rate possible.
However, the real secret is how to generate traffic. Where to find the most efficient traffic sources, and how to make sure they don’t cost you too much?
Are you anxious to know how to get free traffic to your website? From this article, you’ll learn 23 types of free traffic sources that can be highly beneficial for your business. Moreover, you will be able to choose the channels that suit your own personal preferences and strengths!
Best free traffic sources for entrepreneurs who like writing
If you don’t mind producing a significant amount of texts, you can easily turn this writing hobby into cash! There are multiple ways to do it.
1. Write blog posts
An entertaining and engaging blog post is a valuable piece of quality content. What’s especially great, you can use it for several purposes.
First of all, it either gives useful pieces of information or simply provides the readers with something interesting to consider. Therefore, it increases the chances of someone stumbling upon your blog during web surfing. If this person gets curious about your blog contents, he/she will also take a look at your store offers. Isn’t that exactly what you want?
Besides, if you have a good article on your blog, you can share it on your social media accounts. This way, you will reach a large audience of potential buyers (and make sure that hundreds of people read your awesome article). :))
Does your post share some valuable product-related or niche-related pieces of knowledge? For example, if you’re describing different methods of watering plants and explain how to choose the most appropriate one. In this case, the article is likely to get reposted in industry-specific communities – and that’s exactly the place where your potential buyers hang out!
So, creating valuable blog content can efficiently drive traffic to your web store.
If you write quality content for your blog regularly, do quick Google search from time to time. The goal is to find out whether someone has reposted your article(s) and check whether your store is mentioned in the credits.
2. Write on influential platforms
If you have something valuable to share with your audience (and most likely, you have – you really know a lot about the niche you’ve chosen, right?), it might be a good idea to reach an even wider audience through platforms like Medium.com.
This would require you to have advanced writing skills, but the result would be totally worth it. You will establish yourself as an expert in the field, and your business will gain significant exposure. If you want to improve your brand image and boost your sales at the same time, this is one of the best strategies to try.
Don’t forget to share everything you’ve written through external platforms. Make social media posts and short entries in your own in-store blog to notify your followers about this new masterpiece you’ve created.
3. Go on forums to get targeted website traffic
You don’t really need to be a super proficient writer in order to share your thoughts and tips on a niche forum. However, it’s crucial to be attentive. Every forum has its own rules that oblige the contributors to follow certain regulations.
If you want to get guaranteed web traffic from your forum posting, it’s first of all necessary to learn what exactly you can and can’t write in this particular community.
Then, it’s important to share valuable pieces of advice. The more helpful you are to people, the quicker you will gain recognition, and the sooner you will become a reputable forum member. Obviously, it will inspire more trust in your business offers and drive traffic to your site!
Add your store link to your forum signature (if it is allowed on this portal). Every time you post a reply or comment, you will show forum readers your website address and lure them into visiting it.
4. Answer questions on Quora
The Quora portal is considered to be one of the best places to generate a healthy amount of traffic.
On this platform, users post their questions of interest, and various experts (both certified specialists and simply experienced people with no professional background) give their answers and share their opinions on the subject.
As you can guess, the people who leave their questions there are highly motivated to find the solution for their query – this is why it’s really easy to convert them into buyers and loyal customers (in case your store can really help with their requests!).
Look at the most popular questions and answer the ones that are somehow related to your store niche or to your area of professional expertise. Sometimes, it takes some inventiveness to think of an honest and helpful answer that will match your own interests as well!
5. Post on Reddit
This is also a great way to generate high quality traffic, but for an inexperienced writer, Reddit might seem to be quite a challenging destination.
Reddit is famous for its demanding community. You can’t just go there and start posting your site links and ads without getting blocked instantly. At the same time, the portal sees growing popularity and attracts an impressive amount of readers every day, which makes it the perfect destination for entrepreneurs looking for a steady traffic source.
If you want to make good use of Reddit’s traffic potential, start with finding suitable threads, and help the posters with the power of your knowledge. As soon as you reach the necessary level of credibility, you can write your own posts that don’t directly promote your store or products.
6. Send emails
Email marketing can also be a great source of traffic for business. An engaging email with a catchy subject line is a good way to remind clients about your business and motivate the addressee to take a look at your site once again.
In order not to scare away your readers or make them unsubscribe, be creative in your email marketing efforts. Use and rotate different types of letters. Mix product updates with sales announcements, notifications about the newest blog articles, special offers for the subscribers, etc.
7. Write an e-book
If you have something super valuable to share with your audience and can produce a long, coherent, well-structured and logically organized text, an e-book is a thing that can bring you fame, glory, and money.
An e-book is an outstanding traffic generating tool: you don’t spend anything on the book production, and you can easily distribute it across the Web, so you attract new readers, store visitors and buyers with no extra costs.
E-books give you targeted traffic. The person who got your book is already interested in your knowledge and experience. So, it’s much easier for you to convert him/her into an actual buyer.
Free traffic sources for entrepreneurs who like SEO
Some people don’t even want to go deep into the search algorithms: they prefer staying away from the intricacies of search engine optimization. For others, it’s a complicated yet efficient tool (and one of the best website traffic generators) that defines the web store’s prosperity in the long-term period.
If you don’t mind researches and analytical work, this is what you can do to get free traffic from SEO.
You can either simply list the features and peculiarities of each particular product, or, if you’re interested in creating an SEO-friendly description, it’s possible to enrich your texts with relevant long-tail keywords to drive organic traffic to your website.
You will increase your chances of attracting random Web surfers to your store if you include niche-related or product-specific keywords into the description of every product in your store.
9. Optimize images
When dropshipping store owners automatically import products from AliExpress along with all their descriptions, titles, reviews and other details, they obviously grab all the pictures as well.
On the one hand, it’s super convenient: everything gets uploaded at once, and the store owner doesn’t have to make any extra efforts.
On the other hand, there’s always room for growth in terms of SEO. When you take a picture directly from AliExpress, it commonly has a super weird name, lacks alt tags, and has an inappropriate size.
Make sure that the picture file name contains the relevant keyword, the image has a suitable alt tag, and the picture size isn’t too big (otherwise, the page containing this picture will be loading for ages).
10. Revise and update blog posts
If you run a blog in your web store, make a tiny checklist for all the important elements that are the must-haves for every article (keyword-rich headings, links to other pages on your site, bullet lists, synonyms to the chosen keywords, etc.). Look at each article critically, and make the necessary improvements according to your checklist.
Update every article at least once a year. Change the year if it’s mentioned in the text, and rewrite factual information if it gets irrelevant. In terms of SEO (and common sense), outdated articles can’t be free traffic sources.
11. Encourage comments
It is a good idea to motivate your blog readers on discussing every entry and sharing their own thoughts and ideas in the comments section.
The more people comment on your articles, the more likely they are to provide some additional insights, and this is obviously great because a bigger amount of Internet surfers will see this particular comment (and this exact article, and this specific web store) on their search engine results page.
At the end of every article, ask an interesting question that would make the readers write their guesses and opinions.
12. Leave your own comments
Go through industry-related blogs and comment on the articles that are somehow related to your store niche or to your area of professional expertise. Many blogs allow the commenters to provide their own site links, and, in terms of SEO, it’s a winning strategy because it makes you much more visible on Google.
Your comments should be informative and valuable. One-word entries like ‘awesome’ or ‘Agree’ are likely to be considered spammy and deleted. Besides, they contribute nothing to your professional image and reputation.
13. Post on classified ads websites
Every country has its own range of classified ads websites: these sites allow users to post their advertisements for free, and they are commonly considered to be a good-working tool for increasing your website traffic.
If your advertisement contains relevant keywords and meets this particular platform’s requirements, you are likely to make the viewers interested. As you can guess, these people are already highly motivated to make a purchase because they are browsing this particular classified ads website.
Don’t limit yourself with one advertisement placed on one site: create a range of slightly different ads and post them in various categories on several classified ads sites.
Best free traffic sources for entrepreneurs who like videos
If you enjoy creating videos and have the necessary resources to make them on a regular basis, don’t miss out on the opportunity to use them to get free targeted website traffic in any niche! Here are the steps you can take.
14. Create a YouTube channel
Curiously enough, people use YouTube for a variety of purposes: to pass the time (obviously), to search for valuable pieces of information, to share their achievements and creative works, etc.
So, a YouTube channel that posts highly informative videos along with entertaining ones can attract massive attention of the platform users. It means you can heavily benefit from it!
Pay special attention to the contents of your videos. If they are not perfect from the technical/visual point of view, but explain or describe something interesting or important, they can still see a positive response from the viewers.
15. Follow related channels
Clearly, this is a super simple strategy, but it doesn’t mean it’s inefficient!
All you need to do is find YouTube channels that are in some way related to the products you’re selling in your store or to the whole business niche.
The more ‘visible’ and active you become in this specific professional area, the more likely you get to attract attention to your own channel. Recognition is the key to building a strong business brand. Surely, it’s instrumental in attracting more people to your store.
Make sure that your own account looks reliable and makes it clear who you are and what your business is all about. Check if you have your store links featured in the ‘About’ section and pay attention to your videos’ descriptions.
16. Leave valuable comments
Every time you discover a visually appealing, helpful, or emotional video that is dedicated to some of the issues you’re solving with your business, use the comments field to thank the author for the incredible job and to share your personal opinion on the subject.
Don’t leave a comment just for the sake of commenting. Your goal is to become a prominent figure in this specific area of knowledge. When you leave a comment under a popular/informative video, you easily reach a part of this channel’s audience, so you need to be polite and professional in your writings.
17. Place your videos on other platforms
Why limit yourself with YouTube? There are lots of alternative platforms that can also attract hundreds of viewers (and potential buyers).
Depending on the specific features of your products and the dropshipping niche in general, Dailymotion, Vimeo, and even 9GAG TV can turn out to be wonderful places to share your videos.
Don’t forget to share your videos on social networks as well! If you want to show them on Facebook, it’s better to upload them on the platform directly, and not just share a link from some external source.
Free traffic sources for social media fans
The purpose of social media platforms is to help people easily talk to each other and to stay connected. So, in terms of distributing information and raising awareness about this or that thing, social media are irreplaceable and super valuable. This is what you can do with them in order to get more store traffic for free.
18. Create a social media account – one of the best free traffic sources in 2022
A Facebook group, an Instagram/Twitter/Pinterest account, or a page on any other popular social network is essential not only for your social proof, but for your brand recognition and business exposure as well. It increases your website visibility in terms of SEO, helps you reach a wide audience of potential buyers, makes it easier to talk to future customers, and serves as a convenient platform for demonstrating your store offers.
Ready to start inviting Internet users to view/follow your social media account? Make sure this page features all the necessary contact details and already has several engaging posts.
19. Update content regularly
To keep your viewers and followers interested, you need to post something consistently. Your goal is to make high quality posts. Ideally, they should encourage your readers to discuss your entries, to visit your store, and eventually, to make a purchase.
Experiment with interactive posts. Polls, votes, contests, etc. are the activities that make followers involved in the ‘life’ of your page. These are real traffic magnets!
20. Transform content types
Out of ideas what to post? Look at the types of content you already have, and try turning it into something different. For example, you can turn a short article into an infographic picture. Or turn a product features text into a simple video, etc.
First of all, it will give you the opportunity to grab the attention of the people who overlooked the initial post. Because of their perception traits, users don’t always notice the things we want them to see. Some people ignore long texts, others pay no attention to videos, someone just scrolls down pictures, etc.
Plus, repurposing your content, you can post it on social media that weren’t suitable for it before. For example, you can’t post a text entry on Pinterest. Instead, you can convert it into a picture and easily reach a new target audience.
Are you repurposing a piece of content in order to place this new post on some specific social network? Learn the technical requirements of the allowed text length, video duration, images size and resolution, etc.
Free traffic sources for sociable and extroverted entrepreneurs
For some people, it’s super easy to talk to strangers and become friends with them; for others, it’s a nightmare.
Don’t see any difficulties in starting and maintaining a conversation with someone you don’t know? Use this personal trait for the benefit of your business!
21. Cross promotion
Simply speaking, you find a blog/store that operates in the same niche as yours and contact the owner. You suggest that you two mention each other in one another’s social media posts in order to increase your audience coverage.
In other words, this is something similar to the Instagram shoutouts strategy – the only exception is that none of you is doing it for money.
Remember that in this case, this person is your partner, and not the competitor! Both of you are benefitting from this collaboration, so being nice is the key to a fruitful partnership. Discuss the details of the posting politely and come to an agreement together.
If you don’t feel confident enough, start with a cross posting strategy. Repost some of this account’s entries and ask the owners to do the same for you in return. Don’t forget to mention the author of the original post!
22. Guest posting
This is the next step in your long-term friendship with the partner account you’ve chosen.
Offer your partner to write an article for his/her blog and ask to mention your website/business name. Everybody needs good content, which is why they are likely to agree. So, do your best and don’t let them down! Remember that lots of new potential buyers will see your guest article, and its quality will influence their buying decisions.
Alternatively, you can do it the other way round. Ask the partner to write an article for you, and post it with all the due credits. You’ll get great engaging content, and your partner will get increased media coverage.
23. Guest featuring
There are lots of types of collaboration you can try. Filming a part for your partner’s video? Sure! Giving an interview for the industry experts roundup? Great idea! Contributing to a prize fund of a contest you’re holding together? Why not!
Don’t forget to make sure you’re featured in the list of sponsors/guest stars/co-authors!
As you can see, the more you think about it, the more tools and tricks you can come up with!
Inventive entrepreneurs create dozens of ways to reach new, untapped free traffic sources. Have you tried any in your own online store?
Running an online business? Just starting your own brand? Then you need to be on social media – and you absolutely need an Instagram account at the very least. Today, we’re going to take a deep dive into the world of Instagram for business accounts. We’ll see how to leverage your profile to attract followers, convert visitors to buyers, and how to use Instagram effectively to brand yourself. Welcome to our Instagram 101 Tutorial for 2021!
The appeal of Instagram is the ability to share content through dynamic photo and video functions. This, in turn, allows a person (or brand) to connect deeply with followers, loved ones, and family.
Moreover, today one can successfully use Instagram for small business promotion.
Why use Instagram for business
As you may have guessed from above, Instagram is a great tool to market your business. In fact, Retail Touchpoints says that 72% of users report making purchase decisions based on something they saw on Instagram. Promoting business on Instagram also allows you to build a community based on your brand’s beliefs, products, and niche – it’s a branding goldmine.
Furthermore, having a specific-business account on Instagram will allow you to more effectively reach consumers. There are multiple features available such as ads, post insights, and specific call-to-action buttons.
Are there any downsides to using Instagram for a business though? The biggest one may be if your business’ target demographic is older, as most people on Instagram are younger teen – young adult users. Also, utilizing paid ads can get pretty expensive. And really, sometimes – some users are on Instagram for memes or funny content – not necessarily to shop or discover brands.
Nevertheless, the platform can serve as a great marketing tool, so here’s our guide on how to use Instagram to get sales. Let’s start with how to create an Instagram business profile.
How to create an Instagram business account
Setting up an official business account for Instagram is easy (and free). You’ll need a Facebook account set up to start though (but it’s easy). Facebook Business offers easy step-by-step tutorials on how to get set up.
During your profile creation, be sure to select the appropriate category for your account. Think about what industry or category your business lies in. If you don’t see a category that fits, custom search categories to find more specific listings. And remember: you can change your category listing at any time (you know, in case your business grows to include more things).
Once you are set up, make sure you have aspects of your account profile filled out. Pay attention to the avatar, a website URL, and website bio. Your bio is important because there’s limited space to describe your brand, its story, and its beliefs. We share examples of great, catchy brand bios here to help you get started.
How to get Instagram followers for business
BMW has a curated feed that can attract viewer attention quickly.
Content, content, content (and hashtags). Instagram is all about photos and videos that captivate people and lure them in. That’s how Instagram can help your business. Brands have to utilize their accounts to sell the benefits of their products while establishing a connection with followers and customers alike.
Gaining followers is usually easy to do for free (take some tips from us) – but you have to do some work upfront, such as niche and competitor research to see how and where your brand and its products fit into the spectrum of things. Are you high-end or more affordable? Are you more rooted in science or rely on artistic vision and free expression? These are some questions to get you started so you can position your brand effectively.
As you establish your brand, you can move on and focus on bigger efforts such as inspiring mass followings on your profile while avoiding fake followers or bot accounts. And along the way, you may notice a drop in followers, which is actually normal, but can be explained with some reasons.
When speaking of followers and accumulating or losing them, it’s natural to progress into what conspires all this to happen: what you post on your account.
From memes to inspirational quotes and professional studio shots of products, there’s a lot you can do to elevate your website and its branding. Take a page from our experts’ books and consider these start-up ideas for your Instagram business account.
Like with other social media platforms, Instagram also has some easy best practices in terms of how often (and when) business pages should post content. Generally, Sprout Social has found that Wednesdays at 11 a.m. and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. are best for engagement, with Wednesday being the best day of the week to post. And on average, one post a day is max.
Of course, there isn’t a universal recipe for how many times a week you should post. As you can guess, it varies too much by audience and niche. Still, we think at least 3 times a week is ideal (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday) to capture all facets of the work week.
Want an easy way to keep track of your social media calendar? Use this free template here (courtesy of the wonderful Hootsuite) to help you organize your brand’s content and ideas.
How to increase engagement of an Instagram business page
Example of researching keywords for “coffee” on Instagram.
Once you know how to attract followers and post on an organized schedule, it’s also smart to keep in mind how you can keep engagement (clicks, comments, likes, shares) of your Instagram page for business.
When establishing your content calendar and brand strategy, one major piece of prework a brand should do is conduct hashtag research. Hashtags are the keywords of Instagram, as they act as tags for any user to search for to explore content. Look into competitor hashtags, trending hashtags, and what unique hashtags you can utilize for your brand or any campaigns you have. Dive more into the fun world of hashtags here.
One beginner’s strategy we recommend (but it takes time) is the grassroots marketing strategy (you’ve probably seen this if you’re on Instagram yourself) – posting comments on posts of trending accounts or those similar to yours in interest. This gets your name – and humor, should you choose to utilize it for your brand voice – out there to followers of bigger accounts.
Remember: a well-executed grassroots strategy can bring an Instagram business account such as your own new followers, comments, and greater interaction with your brand. As people engage with your business, don’t forget to also be engaging as a brand and to respond to comments or likes on your posts.
A final approach to raising your brand awareness is to get your brand involved in engagement groups (some are free, some are paid), which are small communities of niche-like accounts that co-engage with one another’s accounts to boost engagement rates. In these groups or pods, there generally are rules in regards to link sharing and what type of engagement you need to engage in (ex. “Like” posts only, comment on posts only, repost posts only).
Instagram for business advertising
Before spending money on ads, you’ll want to make sure you have great content and offers to entice viewers.
If you’re building an Instagram account for an ecommerce business, at some point you’ll want to think about expanding into paid advertising to broaden your reach.
But before spending money on ads, you’ll want to make sure you have great content and offers to entice viewers. An engaging profile ensures visitors who click on your ads will want to further interact with your profile.
One approach you can take to advertise your business is to utilize paid shoutouts. By featuring a product or business in exchange for a flat rate, shoutouts are a great way to gain exposure within your niche or target audience with another brand. Learn step-by-step how to use paid shoutouts with our walkthrough video.
Another approach is to reach out to influencers to collaborate on something, whether it’s a feature on Instagram Stories or a sponsored post. Influencers can be expensive, however (especially if they are big names).
A final method (and the most traditional one) for business advertising on Instagram is to roll out paid ads. These are the sponsored posts you may see on your Instagram feed. You can create attractive ads and set them up through Facebook Business Manager.
And if you want to get even more interactive, you can engage in Instagram Shopping through shopping ads, where users can click on links directly on your post image. Unlike paid ads, these ads do not cost you anything. They may take more setup work on the backend of Facebook Business Manager, but can make your posts even more attractive.
Building your brand on Instagram
How to build a brand on Instagram: Start with setting up your account
It is recommended to use one and the same email address for all your social media accounts including Instagram. Start building your brand by properly customizing your avatar, profile bio and Story Highlights.
First of all, you need a professional, trustworthy-looking avatar. Companies usually use their logos here: see how Mercedes-Benz does it.
This is an extremely important section of your account as here you place the information about your brand, your motto and a link to your website. A good Instagram bio should explain to users who you are and what you do.
Instagram Story Highlights
If you use various campaigns, launches and collaborations, it’s also a good idea to list display Stories like albums right below your bio. This way users can see what you do and view each of them.
Identify your audience
With an Instagram account, you want to promote your business to potential customers. To do that, you need to understand who your potential buyers are. In other words, one requires thorough target audience analysis.
How to build a brand on Instagram: Your social media strategy
After creating and customizing your Instagram account, it is time to develop an effective social media strategy. Any social media activity is based on posts, which is why it’s important to have a well-organized content calendar. There are also other vital elements to use in your strategy.
Most brands communicate with potential clients via a conversational tone to engage them more naturally. Here’s how Neutrogena uses an engaging intro and question to get users to respond.
It’s also important to take into account what you want users to do. Different posts can have different objectives, and this is where links, certain hashtags, calls to action and tagging profiles come into play. In most cases you want users to either visit your website or engage with your posts.
Here’s how BMW uses a unique hashtag for a New York Fashion Week sponsorship and tags an influencer to highlight a collaboration.
Hashtags and tagging
As you can see, hashtags are used as keywords to find posts on social media. With proper tools, you can find the right hashtags suiting your business niche. Hashtags can also create a sense of community, while unique hashtags can help when running a branding campaign or product launch.
Liking, sharing, commenting
Businesses on Instagram should not only talk but listen as well. Instead of just posting about yourself, like, comment, and share other posts published by businesses and your followers.
Interaction is the key to showing you are a real brand that is knowledgeable in its niche and community. A lot of traffic can come from people who clicked on your comment or like/share that you did.
Using Instagram Stories & IGTV
You can also use Stories as a part of your strategy to build a brand on Instagram. They are live videos or images that show up on your profile avatar. Instagram Stories last for 24 hours before they get archived in your profile settings, where you can organize them into Instagram Story Highlights.
If you need to use longer videos (up to one hour long) but don’t have a YouTube channel, use IGTV. Once you upload any IGTV content, you will have a tab automatically appear on your Instagram page between your tabs for Posts and Tagged. Unlike Stories, these videos won’t disappear. But keep in mind that you can upload only vertical videos for IGTV.
Tools for Instagram
To create successful content and find deep analytics that’ll help shape and craft your following to precision, it helps to utilize third-party tools and apps. Elevate your Instagram Stories or feed pictures with great photo-editing apps, or get a free inside look to trending hashtags that build traffic on online databases. Take time to create videos and images that speak to your target audience and entice them. And of course, don’t forget to use analytics to see what is working and what isn’t.
Editing apps for Instagram Stories
VSCO is one of the most popular video editing apps for Instagram Stories. It has multiple color effects, can create GIFs and even features a built-in community, though it requires subscription.
Another video editing app, InShot has a variety of functions such as video trimming, video merging, speeding up, bordering blurring for Instagram Stories, and more. You can also apply video filters and voice covers and import mp3 tracks.
StoryArt was designed for creating beautiful Instagram Stories with various text fonts, a selection of themes, filters, and other cool design effects.
One of the most popular image editing tools, Canva features 60,000 free templates and more than 700 font options. It can also be used for editing videos.
#5 InstaSize Photo Editor & Grid
InstaSize allows you to create your own background for images and videos and features 80+ filters for customization.
It’s a free tool to help you find images (both stock and licensed pictures) for creating fresh visual content. The service is fast and provides good-quality images.
#2 Sked Social (formerly ScheduGram)
This tool can autopost content on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, which is extremely useful when you use multiple channels. It also integrates with Canva so you can edit images before posting.
This mobile app allows you to share content and credit to the original Instagram posts by simply copying and pasting their URLs. The author’s name will automatically appear on your new posts.
It’s a tool that lets you create and run contests on different social media including Instagram. It features 90+ templates and 30 themes and allows you to use custom URLs.
Gramto can automatically follow and unfollow multiple users by following the criteria you set for it. It can also automatically post, comment, send direct messages, etc.
Tools for Instagram analytics
It’s a popular tool for managing your social media accounts and gathering data. It can track engagement insights, reach, impressions, mentions, audience demographics, etc. It also tracks what users say about an industry or your brand.
Iconosquare can be used for both Instagram and Facebook.
#2 Squarelovin’ Instagram Insights
Gathers relevant data over time periods – year, month, week. It tracks likes, followers, post performance and interactions with audiences. The tool can also identify the best time to engage followers.
Crowdfire can visualize gathered data into user-friendly charts and diagrams. Another useful function is its ability to find content relevant to your topic. In addition, it lets you publish posts from your blog, website, online store or YouTube channel.
Allows you to compare your account with up to 5 competitors over the last 90 days. Although it’s pretty expensive, one can find its free tools very useful.
#5 Instagram Insights
If you don’t want to use paid tools, there’s always Instagram’s built-in analytics. It tracks your most popular posts, impressions and reach, as well as the best time to post.
Tips on taking high-quality pictures
As you know, one of the benefits of starting a dropshipping business is that you don’t have to keep your inventory in a warehouse. In fact, you only buy products after a customer places an order with your store.
Therefore, when you create Instagram ads, you have to use the photos and videos provided by your supplier. On the one hand, such materials are usually good enough for this purpose. On the other hand, being able to take unique high-quality pictures of products will definitely not hurt your business.
Besides, depending on what dropshipping niche you have chosen, you may want to take pictures that are not related to your products directly (for the purpose of content marketing in general).
So, whether you’re going to order product samples or want to create business-related content on Instagram, it’s still important to know how to make high-quality photos. Don’t worry, you won’t need a professional camera for that. Your smartphone should be enough to impress most Instagram users. You just need to know a few basic principles.
Use natural light instead of flash
Whenever possible, choose natural light over your phone’s flash. Photos made in natural light are much brighter and richer compared to what you can take with artificial light. Even if you take pictures indoors, place the object near the window.
Pick time carefully
Since you want to use natural light, it’s very important to take photos at the right time of the day. Stick to these two tips.
If it’s a sunny day, try taking pictures during the so-called golden hours – the last hour before sunset and the first hour after sunrise. During this time, the sun is low on the horizon, which makes photos much more beautiful.
If it’s a cloudy day, it’s Ok to shoot at midday. While direct sunlight can be a problem, the shade from the clouds will make photos much softer.
Adjust your exposure
Exposure is how much light will reach the sensors of your smartphone camera. By adjusting exposure, you can make the picture brighter or darker. And here’s an important rule to remember: you can make underexposed photos brighter (with photo editors), but you can’t make overexposed photos darker.
So, before taking a picture, make sure it’s not overexposed. A good way to adjust the exposure properly is to tap your finger on the brightest part of the frame and adjust this parameter by sliding.
Use the rule of thirds
Now, let’s talk about composition, i.e. the art of arranging objects in a photo.
Here you can follow the well-known (and quite simple) rule of thirds. To arrange objects in the frame, divide it into a 3×3 grid. In fact, your smartphone should feature this function. It divides the frame into 9 squares that make it easier to align objects.
Photo was taken from photographybay.com
You don’t have to always place the object of interest in the center. Placing it at the intersections or along the lines will make your photos more professional.
Experiment with the viewpoint
People tend to naturally hold the camera at their eye level while standing straight. While this is appropriate in many cases, changing the viewpoint or shooting angle can make photos much more emotional and aesthetically attractive.
You can achieve it by rotating your phone, shooting from above or below the object, or by standing close to a wall, etc.
Experiment with space and depth
As a rule, you don’t want to leave empty spaces on your photos and, therefore, try to zoom in on the object. However, if there are interesting details around the object, you may want to capture them as well.
It’s also a good idea to shoot different objects as layers. In this case, you’ll have an object in the foreground and a pattern or another object in the background. So, each layer contains something to look at.
SUMMARY: Utilizing Instagram for business is fun (and necessary in today’s social age). Still, it does require a good amount of research and continuous content creation and engagement tactics to reach high follower counts and exposure. From paid ads to shoutouts to maintaining a social media calendar, there’s a reason why social media is a serious part of marketing for your online business.
Would you like to have a really cool, SEO-friendly online store with perfect design? Do you want to get ahead of your competitors and bond with your customers as much as possible? In this case, you should definitely look at a new stylish theme by AliDropship – it’s Frida!
Meet Frida: a brand new stylish theme designed to impress your customers
There’s no secret that it’s not challenging to start an online store. In fact, it doesn’t even take long to build an online store from scratch. It depends on the niche, number of products, services to be applied, etc. You can simply use a basic solution lots of people prefer and launch a generic yet fully functional store quite quickly.
But how do you start a store that’s really cool in all aspects? What if you’re looking for eye-catching design, SEO-friendliness, high-converting product pages, easy navigation, and more? The answer is simple: exclusive online store themes by AliDropship are here at your service!
AliDropship has been developing premium themes for your dropshipping stores on a permanent basis. Today we’d like to announce our brand new solution – it’s the Frida theme!
Introducing Frida, a stylish theme made to boost your online store sales
What’s so special about Frida? How is it different from other themes by AliDropship?
In fact, we develop specific themes for different tasks.
Frida is a theme designed to make a strong first impression and establish close contact with your customers.
How is this achieved?
Frida is intended for online stores with a small inventory. The idea behind Frida is to put each product in the spotlight.
That’s exactly why Frida has no built-in submenu, for example! With small inventory stores, it would complicate the navigation through the store and distract your customers from the main reason they visit your website: to buy the product they’re looking for. And Frida is all about capturing and focusing your visitors’ attention to make the buying process absolutely natural and seamless.
So, what does this powerful and stylish theme allow you to do to maximize your revenues?
Create one or several featured single product pages
Frida is designed for those who are eager to concentrate on a small range of the most trending products to sell. However, this theme allows you to highlight several most valuable products due to the featured single product pages you can create.
This will let you describe your leading products in detail and aim all your marketing efforts at them. As a result, you are sure to establish closer contact with your customers by making the product absolutely clear for them.
If you want to bond with your customers a bit more, Frida is glad to offer an option of product comparison. This clean and easy-on-the-eyes section will help highlight your product features by comparing them with what your opponents offer on the market. Here’s one more space where you can put a product in the spotlight — just find the right words.
Make a memorable About Us page
With Frida, you’re able to provide your store with an About Us page to help you introduce your team on your own terms. This is a great opportunity to share your values, tell a story behind your goods and show who creates them. Thus, you get another chance to build trust and сreate a strong bond with your customers.
Use the Main page video
Frida lets you add a video to the homepage slider. If you choose the right piece of video, your store will interest anyone who visits your website since it looks really cool!
What else can Frida offer?
Besides all the above mentioned, Frida has the whole range of handy features we use in other AliDropship themes for users’ maximum benefit.
Tailor-made product pages
Frida allows you to create finely crafted featured product pages. This is the way to shake the web and turn your offerings into true online sensations. Beyond this, you’re able to fine-tune these pages for each item to make them look exactly the way you want them.
By the way, here’s one more feature Frida can boast: with this theme, you’re able to add pictures to the product categories!
Don’t forget video content matters for online stores! Nowadays, people always tend to look for an opportunity to watch a video instead of reading some piece of text. And in online shopping, videos are one of the most important sources of information for everyone making a purchasing decision.
With the Frida theme, you can strike up incomparably more trusted relations with your customers. Moreover, it’s a chance to elevate your brand to greater heights by easily featuring video reviews on your Homepage. Profit!
User-generated content is one more crucial aspect that business owners sometimes overlook. However, it plays a key role in product perception, and this is the very tool you can use to boost your store sales significantly.
We know well how user-generated content is important. So in product reviews, Frida features a special section to give your customers-to-be a better understanding of what you have to offer. Convince them that the product they’re looking at is a real find, and leave no room for refusal!
As you can see, Frida suits those entrepreneurs who don’t want to be overstretched but focus on a small number of hype products only. With Frida, you are able to provide a customer with full information about your best sellers and leave them no choice but to place an order in your store.
By the way, Frida is now the fastest theme AliDropship is happy to offer. If you want to build a really fast online store your customers won’t be disappointed with their shopping experience.
So are you ready to try Frida, a brand new stylish theme by AliDropship?
The sellers process your orders and arrange the shipping
The future of this package now fully depends on the postal service, customs, and all that.
Do you see what the challenge is?
To get the package in time for Christmas, it’s necessary to place the order 1-1,5 months ahead.
Of course, there are some people who prefer buying gifts at the last minute. But if a customer wants to receive the order before December 20th, it’s better to make a purchase before the second week of November.
It gives you a whole month to plan forward all your marketing efforts, and 2 weeks to put them into practice.
Remember that November 11th is the day of Global Shopping Festival on AliExpress!
It’s the time when AliExpress sellers are flooded with orders, and shopping on the platform reaches unbelievable heights all over the world. This is the time when global payment systems may become overloaded and have glitches. Moreover, at this moment postal services and customs handle countless packages. Ideally, you need to make your store visitors place an order BEFORE this crazy time!
Now it’s time to share a few Christmas marketing ideas. Follow this handy calendar and feel no stress preparing for the festive season!
Christmas promotion calendar 2021 from the AliDropship marketing team
Write down the dates when you can do the following:
Create new design elements
Header images, banners, a cover image for the Facebook page and other social networks accounts, templates for Christmas packaging/flyers, etc. require your attention!
What will be the general style of all the new elements you add? Will you do it all yourself or order these elements from someone else? How much money can you spend on them? Will you ask your AliExpress suppliers to print out your leaflets/cards/flyers and include them in the packages? How much will it cost and how soon do you need to email the designs to your suppliers?
Analyze the best selling products in your store and think about how you can benefit from them
What do people buy most often from you? How can you further promote these products during the pre-holiday season? Will you post them in a gallery on the home page? Will you set up a cross-sell option?
Add new products to the store and make the product pages look attractive
What are the hottest Christmas trends? Which products can you add to make a more diverse and appealing product offer in your store? What can you write in item descriptions to make the product pages more SEO-friendly? Do all the older product pages in your store look as perfect as the newer ones?
Rethink the prices
When and how will you change the prices? Will you offer coupons for some (or all) of the products? Will you create special holiday packages combining several items at a lower cost?
Halloween is over, so you are now free to start your Christmas 2021 marketing campaign!
Now you can start adding your special design elements, publishing the newest items, posting the holiday articles in your blog, running the advertising campaigns on social networks, and, in general, doing all the things you’ve been planning during the last 3 weeks.
Don’t do it all at once!
First, it’s physically impossible, so you’ll quickly get tired and frustrated.
Second, it’s much easier to keep your visitors and followers entertained when you have a tiny surprise for them every day.
Try to stretch your pre-Christmas promotion campaign across all these 2 weeks, and your audience will be motivated to follow the news and updates.
Of course, it’s not necessary to remove all your beautiful website design elements when 12 days of Christmas have gone! Keep these lovely Christmas-themed elements until December 25, and after that…start getting ready for another holiday!
Make your store ready for Christmas 2021 with these winning items
Christmas is a magical time of wonders and light. A holiday that always brings something new and unique, adds new facets to our senses through aromas and flavors, colors and lights, memories and expectations.
To create Christmas miracles, you need the right products. And we know which ones are particularly in high demand this pre-holiday season. We’ve discovered 4 product categories that will allow you to make a special Christmas offer to your customers. Let’s look at them!
1. Christmas items: home decorations
Christmas mood is here! In the pre-holiday season, people are actively beginning to be interested in interior design. Everyone is pleased to decorate their homes with different Christmas items. All shiny, glowing and golden home decorations (garlands, window stickers, candles, etc.) will definitely be in high demand.
We can see the growth of interest in these items in the screenshot below:
Also, don’t forget about the goods for serving the Christmas table and kitchen. It is no less important than the decor of the whole house!
Let’s look at a few popular products in this category:
If your customers can find these Christmas items in your store, they will be excited to add them to their shopping carts!
2. Outdoor Christmas decorations
Traditionally, Christmas holidays are associated with a decorated Christmas tree and bright lights. Beautiful lighting creates a special atmosphere of celebration, and you can decorate the house not only inside but also outside.
Therefore, thinking over the Christmas decor of rooms, people don’t forget about the exterior design of the house. And you shouldn’t forget about these products!
Look at the screenshot below and you’ll understand why we insist so much on dropshipping outdoor Christmas decorations. 🙂
Outdoor Christmas decorations for window openings, roof, and facade with luminous snowflakes, stars, different figures – all these items will be in trend.
Let’s look at some products in this category!
3. Christmas clothes
With the help of clothing and accessories, many people show their individuality. Seasonally themed things are becoming increasingly trendy. The upcoming Christmas is no exception.
Look at the screenshot and you will definitely stop doubting it!
When buying Christmas clothes and accessories, people allow themselves to be happy and delight others, as well as create a special holiday mood. You can offer Christmas clothes not only for people but also for pets. After all, such clothes look extremely cute on them!
Let’s look at some items of these categories!
Christmas clothing items will look good in your Christmas proposal along with garlands, toys, and other seasonal offerings. Also, these products can be a great gift (as well as products from the previous categories).
4. Christmas gifts
By the way, speaking about gifts!
What’s a holiday without gifts?! And here we have to take advantage of it!
Every adult and child wants to see unusual gifts under the Christmas tree, selected specifically for them. People enjoy receiving gifts from each other. For someone, a gift is a small miracle and it’s always nice to get it at the right time. Also, gifts can be very useful – such as themed cookie molds, for example. Food is an integral part of the holiday, and people here try to make everything look festive.
Everyone loves gifts! The screenshot confirms this fact:
Christmas is a great occasion to please your dearest and nearest with beautiful gifts. That’s how every customer feels. And if they find what they are looking for in your store, it will be a great success for you!
The gifts can be very different! Here we’ve presented only a few of them:
Christmas is a wonderful holiday that brings joy to people around the world. Let this holiday delight you and make your business thrive!
Haven’t you ever heard about Alibaba dropshipping? If so, this is high time to start a dropshipping business with Alibaba: in September, due to Alibaba sales, you’re able to save up to 40% on products you offer in your store.
Why start dropshipping with Alibaba
Ecommerce entrepreneurs mainly dropship goods from AliExpress. Recently, lots of options for dropshippers have started to appear.
Business owners who target the US market can team up with Sellvia, for example, and dropship goods on quite favorable terms.
Sellvia is a whole network of trending dropshipping products, the fast shipping option, high-converting product pages, time-tested marketing materials, etc. Sellvia offers products physically located in the California-based fulfillment center. This is the reason Sellvia is ready to ensure fast shipping (1-3 business days).
For those who target other regions or the whole world, it’s a great idea to consider Alibaba dropshipping.
Alibaba dropshipping: pros and cons
Despite the fact that Alibaba mainly deals with the B2B segment, they’ve decided to collaborate with dropshippers. On Alibaba, you can now find a wide range of products specifically for dropshipping.
Although Alibaba is a wholesale platform, these products don’t imply MOQ (minimum order quantity). So you get an opportunity to supply from Alibaba at wholesale prices, meanwhile, you don’t need to buy them in bulk. Profit!
Besides, there’s a long list of benefits you get if you team up with Alibaba.
You gain access to over a million dropshipping products that you can sell from your online store
There are more than 10,000 top-rated manufacturers you can supply from
All the orders are protected with Alibaba Trade Assurance program
Sezam is the first official Woo plugin for dropshipping with Alibaba. It’s designed to automate your dropshipping business with Alibaba as much as possible and free you from the most boring and time-consuming tasks a computer is able to easily perform for you.
All you need to start Alibaba dropshipping is to install Sezam on your website and add the Alibaba products you like to the product range of your store. Actually, that’s it. Sezam will do all the rest for you!
Each time an Internet user places an order in your store, Sezam transmits the order information to your Alibaba suppliers, and they start preparing packages to ship to your customers. It remains for you only to keep the profit from the wholesale price!
Note: if you order a custom store, you get one that is already filled with products. However, you have an opportunity to sell products from Alibaba easily by adding Sezam to your website and importing products from Alibaba.
Why is it a good time to start Alibaba dropshipping: Alibaba sales
If you still don’t have your own profitable business yet, or you’re looking for an option to expand your venture, we recommend you start Alibaba dropshipping right now. What’s the reason?
Although Alibaba offers dropshippers cooperation on favorable terms, recently they have started a September super sale for dropshippers. The point is that they give 10% OFF or more on the dropshipping products they offer. In fact, there’re lots of items with really impressive discounts.
What’s more, this sale applies not only to products themselves. In September, Alibaba is ready to cut the shipping fees up to $20 OFF. On-time delivery is, of course, guaranteed.
By the way, since Alibaba has firmly decided to collaborate with dropshippers, they are glad to provide your online stores with ready-to-ship products with fast customization.
Alibaba dropshipping & Sezam
As you can see, Alibaba now offers quite favorable terms to start Alibaba dropshipping. It really doesn’t matter whether you’re an ecommerce newcomer who doesn’t have an online store yet or you’d like to expand the product range of your current store and enhance its capacity.
Alibaba looks like a great opportunity for anyone to unleash the potential of a successful business owner and get a stable source of income. This is really important not only nowadays but always.
For our part, AliDropship has done its best to ease the process of running a business and make your store work on autopilot.
Would you like to get a smooth start in dropshipping with Alibaba sales? Get Sezam and benefit from a fully automated ecommerce business!