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Here’s the thing about people: they love to have opinions, and they love to be dramatic. The explanation could be evolutionary—making snap decisions on the basis of minimal evidence probably saved our ancestors’ lives on a daily basis. But, even now, when it’s the safest time to a be a human in the history of the Earth, people are still making sweeping claims with little to nothing to back them up.
For example: the idea that physical retail is dead and never coming back. Yes, people do think this. It seems that many have misinterpreted the rapid growth of ecommerce as evidence that brick-and-mortar stores are cooked for good. Let us be the first to tell you that this is demonstrably false—sales from physical stores make up 90% of all retail transactions.
Even though physical retailers are here to stay and ecommerce sites are flourishing, everyone could use some pointers to improve their online advertising efforts. That’s why we’re here.
The core (and obvious) disadvantage of physical retail, when stacked up against ecommerce, is that the former doesn’t allow you to turn anyone in the world into a customer. The success of a brick-and-mortar store depends on its ability to drive foot traffic from prospects who live in the surrounding area. Thus, it makes no sense for your store to run search ads that show consumers hundreds of miles away.
In fact, it’s not only nonsensical—it’s downright wasteful. If someone across the country sees an ad for your physical retail outlet, he’ll do one of two things. He may keep scrolling due to a lack of interest, thus hurting your click-through rate (CTR) and undermining your performance in the Google ad auction. Or, he’ll fail to realize that you’re far away and click on your ad, costing you money without offering any conversion potential. To avoid both of these budgetary nightmares, use Google Ads geo-targeting and limit your ads to show only to nearby prospects.
Use landing page offers to acquire email addresses. When someone clicks on your ad, greet him with an offer for a buy one get one free voucher. This is a great way to simultaneously drive foot traffic to your store and turn prospects into email subscribers. Once you have a prospect’s email address, you can keep him updated with all your latest products, deals, and events. If you take the time to write intriguing headlines and engaging copy, you can turn email into a super effective customer retention tool.
Whether they eventually buy from an online retailer or a physical store, 70% of American consumers begin their shopping experiences with search engines. For your ecommerce site to thrive, you need to rank highly in the organic search results. Content marketing is an awesome step in the right direction. Say you sell women’s clothes. Adding a blog to your site and using it to provide fashion and lifestyle advice is a surefire way to boost your organic traffic.
Why? Because creating engaging content opens the door for you to earn links from other websites and drive shares across social media. Even if some consumers don’t immediately convert after visiting your site, content makes them aware of your brand and brings them into your remarketing funnel. There’s no downside!
Did you know that 37% of online shoppers say they use social media for shopping inspiration? In other words, people use platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest to get ideas for their next purchase. Whenever you release a new product or launch a new clothing line, promoting it on social media is an effective way to get prospects’ attention and drive them to your site. Plus, you can flag these posts with hashtags. That way, Instagram users who are looking for rompers can find your profile easily.
For further online advertising wisdom, read the WordStream blog.