As of 2023, an estimated 4.4 million websites are using Shopify the world over. This means that your Shopify marketing has to be exceptionally effective to stand out from the crowd, attract visitors and drive traffic to your store.
Merely having a product that offers compelling value isn’t enough. To be successful, you need a proven Shopify marketing strategy. But before we get to practical ideas for Shopify marketing, let’s understand the platform and its capabilities.
Introduction to Shopify and its marketing capabilities
As a SaaS (Software as a Service) solution, Shopify offers a comprehensive platform for businesses to sell their products and services online. Used primarily by small and medium businesses, it’s the most common CMS that makes it easy to start a customised website.
Whether it’s an online tutorial or handmade artefacts, you can sell them on Shopify. It gives you a wide range of resources for marketing, customer engagement, sales, shipping, analytics, reporting functionalities and many more. The platform offers various plans including Shopify, Shopify Lite, Basic Shopify, Advanced Shopify and Shopify Plus.
Although you have a fully-fledged stack of resources, your online store would need a viable Shopify marketing strategy to succeed in the increasingly competitive marketplace.
8 ways to boost your Shopify marketing strategy
These proven methods will help you attract more visitors to your Shopify store and increase its revenue.
Building brand awareness through social media marketing
A Shopify marketing strategy would be incomplete without social media marketing. Almost all successful stores on the platform have a top-notch social media presence across platforms.
Since it favours images and videos, Instagram is the frontrunner among social media channels. Facebook may not be as engaging or growing at the rate of Instagram but it does have Facebook Groups, which allow you to introduce your store and talk about its unique offerings. Pinterest is another medium with high engagement where you can find your potential customers.
Build a distinct brand identity in your design, language and tone. Being consistent is the most important rule in social media marketing. Regularly post images, videos and case studies of users. Always focus on providing value. Engage with your followers and answer their queries. These will help you drive traffic to your Shopify store.
Utilising email marketing to engage with customers
Email marketing allows you to continuously engage with your customers. Once you have a proper lead capture strategy to build an email list, you have a community to reach out to grow your Shopify store. To be successful in email marketing you need to focus on drip email sequences and segmentation.
You should have different kinds of emails for regular users, first-time visitors, cart abandonment users, browse abandonment users etc. You also need to send transactional emails such the ones for order confirmation, shipping updates, lifecycle marketing emails and special offers.
The focus should be to regularly engage with your community. Going beyond sales-related emails, you can offer helpful suggestions related to your domain to establish your authority. This increases your credibility and makes it easy for customers to buy from you.
Optimising your Shopify store for search engines (SEO)
In the world of digital marketing, there’s nothing like free traffic and the way to do it is through e-commerce search engine optimisation (SEO). This should be one of your priorities when building your website.
Make sure that your Shopify store is SEO-friendly, with relevant and updatable meta titles, canonical URLs, 301 redirects and automatically generating sitemaps. Collectively, these will make sure that your home page, collections page, product pages and others are indexed and can be easily found through search engines.
Along with these, what you need is a credible content marketing strategy. What can help you here is a blog. Blog posts with both main and long-tail keywords related to your category and consumer queries can improve your ranking on search engine results. These will help you direct traffic to your Shopify store.
Influencer marketing and partnering with influencers
Another effective Shopify marketing strategy is to partner with an influencer to raise your shop’s brand awareness and drive users to it. While this can be expensive, it can immediately boost your visibility since influencers give you access to their followers. The key is to find influencers that your target audience is already following.
You can pay an influencer to post about your store and its products. Social media platforms have stringent guidelines on sponsored posts. The influencer has to let their followers know that it’s a paid post or collaboration.
Another way to use influencer marketing in your Shopify marketing strategy is through social media takeovers. Here, an influencer takes over your social media for posting Stories (on Instagram or Facebook) for a given period. This quickly enlarges your audience pool.
Utilising paid advertising through platforms such as Google and Facebook
Organic traffic will take time no matter how diligent you’re about SEO or social media marketing. You can shorten the process through paid advertising on Google and social media platforms. These give you immediate visibility in front of the right people.
Google Shopping ads and paid search ads will put you at the top of the search results. Make sure that you only bid for the relevant search keywords. But Google may not be the right answer for all brands. Some will have better results from Facebook and/or Instagram.
You can manage your Facebook and Instagram paid ad campaigns from your Facebook ad dashboard. An advantage of these platforms is that you can target with more precision using factors such as location, age, education, brand associations and political affiliations. With more precise targeting, you’ll improve your chances of conversion.
Implementing retargeting campaigns to drive sales
Someone who’s already bought from your store is more likely to buy from you, provided they liked the product or service. But not all buyers will be interested in staying in touch with your brand. The way to find them is through retargeting campaigns.
With a retargeting campaign, you’re using paid ads to display your ads on platforms to those individuals who have already visited your store. For this, you need a functional tracking mechanism.
You can customise your retargeting campaign based on how the visitor would have interacted with your website. For example, you can show your ads only to those who finished a purchase from you. By customising the ads to show categories or products they would have previously bought, you’ll have a greater chance of interesting them to visit your shop.
Offering special promotions and discounts to drive traffic and sales
Your Shopify marketing will be more impactful if you can incentivise visitors or existing customers with special promotions and discounts. The offers could include free shipping, limited-time discounts and exclusive offers.
Push notifications are a proven way to inform your customers of promotions and discounts if they opt for them. You can also use social media and email marketing to communicate your offers to your audience. Another way to get visitors excited is by offering a discount on all first-time purchases or through contests and giveaways. This gives prospective buyers an immediate reason to buy from your store.
Remember that while offering promotions and discounts, your store should also accomplish a marketing objective. This could be email sign-ups, selling a specific product or getting past customers to return.
Measuring and analysing the success of your marketing efforts
Regularly analysing your performance can help improve the effectiveness of your Shopify marketing strategy. For this, you have to measure all your tactics, starting with your landing page. Conduct an A/B testing to see which page attracts and retains visitors.
You should extend this to your social media posts, email marketing and discounts too. Do social media posts with contests perform better than others? Are videos creating more engagement? Do emails with offers outperform others? Is free shipping a better offer than a 15 per cent discount?
When you make the changes and conduct your tests, make sure that you start small. Make incremental changes or you won’t be able to figure out which factor was responsible for the difference in traffic, engagement or conversion.
Future considerations for Shopify marketing
The right Shopify marketing strategy has to be tailored to your product, audience and budget. Importantly, it has to evolve to take into account competition and changing digital marketing trends.
For example, conversational marketing, social commerce and cross-promotions with other brands might be productive tactics. Above all, you need to use every resource including third-party apps and integrations to add might to your Shopify marketing.