As advertisers shift more of their budgets to digital channels, online marketing is becoming more competitive than ever. In 2016, marketing leaders prioritized spending on websites, digital commerce, and digital advertising above all other channels, Gartner says. And according to Business Insider, Amazon alone accounted for 43 percent of sales, indicating what smaller companies are up against. By 2021, advertisers will spend 46 percent of their budgets on digital channels, Forrester forecasts.
To stay profitable in this environment, you need to be using better marketing tactics than your competition. Here are five techniques you can use to make your digital marketing content more competitive and steer sales away from online rivals.
Gather Business Intelligence on Your Market
You can gain an edge on the competition by studying their products and services, lead generation techniques, and sales tactics. Start by reviewing competitors’ websites, recommends Louder Online. Follow up with a review of content posted off-site in places such as social media profiles, video sites, slideshare sites, and guest articles. Buzzsumo is a good tool for identifying content your competitors are distributing.
Once you’ve gathered this data, analyze it to identify some key numbers. How much content is your competition publishing? How often? What channels are they using? Which content is generating the best results? Use this information to guide your own content development strategy.
Make Your Site Mobile Friendly
Google has been favoring mobile-friendly sites since 2014, but only 30 percent of small businesses had optimized their sites for mobile as of last year. says Medium. With Google preparing to roll out a separate search index for mobile users, Engine Search Land reports, making your site mobile-friendly is more imperative than ever.
Optimizing a site for mobile requires adjustments such as making your site responsive, using large fonts and graphics and avoiding Flash coding. Google provides an online tool your web designer can use to evaluate your site’s mobile-friendliness.
Optimize Your Product Pages
To compete for SEO traffic, it’s essential to optimize your product pages. Here’s how:
- Use five to six high-quality images to give visitors a sense of your product’s uses and features.
- Use long-tailed title tags that include your product name and other important details, such as brand names, model numbers, and colors.
- Place your most important keywords in the first 60 characters of your titles.
- Sprinkle other keywords throughout your page headers and content.
- Use bulleted lists to highlight key benefits and selling features.
Keeping your product pages optimized requires ongoing maintenance. This can become tedious if you have many product pages to manage, especially if they’re distributed across multiple websites. You’ll find this task more efficient if you choose the best e-commerce platform for managing your content. For instance, Content Analytics lets you manage your product pages from a single portal where you can store, update, and optimize all your content.
Provide Information on Your Competitors
Eighty percent of shoppers now go online to compare prices before buying products in stores, according to a recent Market Track survey. You can gain a competitive edge by providing price comparison information on your site and matching your competitions’ prices. Using pricing optimization software will help you automate this process.
You can also gain an advantage by providing other information about your competitors of interest to shoppers. For instance, posting product reviews can help shoppers find your site and learn how your products stack up to competitors’ offerings.
Monitor the Effectiveness of Your Content
The smartest way to stay competitive is to use e-commerce analytics tools to gather objective feedback about the effectiveness of your content campaigns and product pages. This enables you to make adjustments and improvements based on measurable data instead of guesswork.
Yotpo recommends tracking results at all stages of your marketing funnel. For instance, if visitors are coming to your site from your Facebook page, you can track how many visitors click on your posts, how many land on a specific product page, and click to add the product to their cart, how many click to check out and how many actually complete the checkout process. You can similarly track content coming from search engines, referrals, email, and other sources.