Should you blog? Blog how to’s and best practices for retail
In the past, blogging required a certain level of technical proficiency and was mainly reserved to journalists IT experts. was needed. However, blogs have since become a widespread format for content for everything from lifestyle to marketing and many retailers have recognized it as an essential element of their business strategy. Every online business, ranging from resume writing services to an online clothing store needs a blog. Even local brick and mortar stores can greatly benefit from having one.
If done right, blogging can boost your brand’s exposure, as well as your ROI. On the other hand, a blog that hasn’t been properly thought out or well written can also harm your reputation. Before getting started, do some research and find out what the best blogging practices are for your businesses.
1. Put your product on display
One of the biggest flaws of online shopping is that customers don’t get the opportunity to test or try the items they like. Some retailers include videos, but most of the time customers must base their shopping decisions solely on a few static images. As a retailer, perhaps you can bridge that gap by showing your product off in greater detail. Choose your most popular items and display them using visual storyboards or even videos in which you unbox and use the product. Once you’ve caught your customers’ attention, you can direct them to the rest of your offer. Think of it as the virtual window to your physical shop. If one of the items on display attracts them, customers will be more likely to walk in and buy something.
Once they see how your product works or looks, they will be more inclined to order it. This sort of transparency can help you build trust and keep your customers coming back for more.
2. Keep your content short and to the point
These days, people have an extremely short attention span, especially while browsing online. With all the content on the web, we’re often forced to scan information instead of reading it attentively. In fact, with mobile devices becoming the dominant platform for content consumption, the expected attention span for reading and viewing content is shorter than ever. For retailers, this means you only have a few seconds to make an impression and keep their attention. Of course, in-depth posts are still very useful and can do wonders for your SEO.
Keep your posts segmented and easy to read. Use lists, bullet points, concise paragraphs, as well as subheadings with bolder fonts. This way, no matter if your reader chooses to scan or read your blog, they’ll get the same takeaways.
3. Discuss trends in your industry
Keeping an eye on current hot topics in your niche will help your blog stay relevant. In fact, since readers tend to seek out trending topics on their own, you can use their interest to your advantage and gain some instant exposure by driving more traffic to your retail blog and online store.
- Quick tip: use Google Trends to check out which topics you should write about next.
In addition to showcasing your knowledge on the topic and providing useful tips, you should also associate certain products to your posts and use this platform to increase visibility and boost sales. In order to maintain your readership and keep up with constantly evolving trends and customer needs, you’ll want to post on a regular basis and remain consistent. This is imperative to building a following.
4. Include customer reviews and testimonials
Customer testimonials and authentic user reviews can help your retail business establish credibility and attract new customers. If possible, try to get your customers to leave video testimonials as these have become easier than ever to share by simply embedding them into your posts, or even uploading them directly to your YouTube channel. Establishing trust is especially important if your retail business is brand new and people don’t know a lot about it.
- Quick tip: Add a transcript of each one of your video testimonials. This will allow you to boost your SEO with the natural use of keywords.
5. Use strong action verbs
One of the biggest no-nos of writing online and blogging is the use of passive voice. For instance, “10 Ways to Get Your Content Written” doesn’t sound as good as “10 Ways You Can Write Better Content”. Moreover, if you decide to use CTAs (call to action), you will have to use strong active verbs that will motivate your audience and clearly let them know about what their next step should be. Sentences and content with active voice sounds more dynamic and engaging. Of course, there will be times when it will make sense to use a passive voice, so don’t go out of your way to avoid it altogether.
Blogging isn’t just a way to have your voice heard, it’s a powerful tool for reaching out to a particular audience, raising awareness about your brand, growing your business, and increasing your customer base. Follow the tips and you’ll get there in no time.