How to Create an Efficient Content Marketing Strategy for eCommerce

There are around 24 million eCommerce websites worldwide, but we only remember a handful like Amazon, eBay, and Walmart. Do you know why? Because of their efficient content marketing strategy.

The eCommerce brands listed above focus on addressing the specific needs of their target audience, frequently answering their questions and concerns and guiding users at each point of their purchase journey. To replicate their success on your eCommerce website, you need to build a stellar content strategy that nurtures your customers, caters to their specific needs, and entices them to buy.

All these things can be overwhelming, but with the steps shared in this blog, you will easily sail through it. Let’s begin:

Why need of eCommerce Content Marketing Strategy?

Your eCommerce website needs a content strategy because:

  • Ecommerce Content Marketing strategy can help you increase your eCommerce website’s search rankings and attract organic traffic by identifying and incorporating relevant keywords.
  • Content like product descriptions, blog posts, help guides, and product manuals directly answer customer concerns, reduce friction, foster engagement, and boost sales.
  • Organic content marketing efforts bring 1000x more traffic than paid advertising.
  • A well-executed content strategy can differentiate your eCommerce website from competitors. Amazon is a popular example of how Amazon stands out by offering personalized suggestions.
  • Efforts put into organic content strategy compound over time. For example, a high-quality blog or eBook you create today would keep bringing traffic for years.

In short, a content strategy lays the foundation of your eCommerce website and helps it sustain in the long run.

9 Steps to Create a Sustainable Content Strategy for Your eCommerce Website

Step 1: Know Your Target Audience

It is the most essential step to building an effective content strategy, but sadly most people get it wrong and the entire strategy goes downhill.

Customers are the ultimate stakeholders of your products. Everything on your eCommerce website revolves around them. Now, if you fail to cater to them, your website would never be successful. That’s why you must identify your target audience first.

Know who they are, what problems they’re facing, and how your product solves those problems. When your product aligns with their needs, they would definitely buy it.

Here are a few ways to learn about your target audience:

  • Surveys, forums, and interviews.
  • Competitor and market analysis.
  • Social media channels.
  • Web analytics tools like Google Analytics.
  • Focus groups and panels.

Based on the collected data, you can create buyer personas representing your target audience based on demographics, psychographics, and behavior patterns. You can even use GPT-4 and Bard to create a psychographic profile of your ideal customers.

Here’s how creating a buyer persona would shape your eCommerce website’s content strategy later on:

  • Detailed insights into your target audience’s likes and dislikes, behavior patterns, and pain points would help you tailor your content to their preferences.
  • When you understand your buyer personas, you can create messaging that directly addresses their concerns, desires, and motivations. It would increase your chances of conversions.
  • By understanding your personas and their behavior patterns, you can choose the right content channels. For example, if your personas show that your certain audience is more active on Instagram or Snapchat – you may not want to invest much on Twitter.

Buyer personas also serve as a guide for content creators to align their messaging, tone, and style to your target audience – increasing your chances of conversion.

Step 2: Under the Buying Cycles of Your Target Customers

Created the buyer personas of your target audience? Great! But don’t start with content strategy creation yet. First you need to understand at which stage of the buying cycle (awareness, consideration, decision-making) your target customers are. It’s because each stage requires a different approach.

  • Customers at the top of the funnel (TOFU) stage are looking for options for certain products, let’s say shoes or men’s shoes. They want to know about various options that might be available for shoes. To these customers, you can offer a category page listing different types of shoes with small and catchy descriptions for each or general blogs educating them about different types of shoes available.
  • Customers at the middle of the funnel (MOFU) are educated shoppers. They know what they want and to convert them, you need to convince them. Hence, buying guides or detailed product comparison pages would be helpful if you’re catering to them.
  • Customers at the bottom of the funnel (BOFU) are educated but also almost ready to buy. All you need is a little final push and they would buy. You can entice them with FAQ pages that address their concerns, coupon pages that encourage them to buy to avail discount, and purchase and return policies that give them a sigh of relief if they’re wondering how they would return the product if they don’t like it.

This targeted approach ensures you’re not creating content for the sake of it. Instead, you target customers based on their motivations and concerns – paving a way for enhanced customer engagement, improved conversions, and long-lasting trust.

Step 3: Audit Your Existing Content to Identify Gaps

The next step is to audit your existing content to identify where you stand and what gaps you need to fill to achieve your end goals. Here are the questions that you need to answer at this stage:

  • Which content is bringing organic traffic on your eCommerce website and which isn’t?
  • Which product pages are generating revenue?
  • What gaps do the pages that fail to generate revenue have (stale content, outdated stats, addressing the wrong persona in copy)?
  • Which content fits your target audience’s needs?

Once you have the answers, create a priority list of pages you want to rehash, remove, or redirect based on your end goals.

In case, you’re not sure where to start, many content audit toolkits exist in the market (Screamingfrog, SEO Site Checkup, SEOPTIMER, and Deepcrawl to name a few). You can even use Google Search Console, Google Analytics, hotjar and Microsoft Clarity to analyze how your content is performing.

Step 4: Prepare the Content Strategy

Once you have your buyer personas with their buying cycles in hand and you’ve identified gaps that you need to fill by conducting the content audit – the next step is to prepare the content strategy. This step involves the following sub-steps:

A. Identify the type of content you want to put out there

Here are a few content types you can create and share on your eCommerce website depending upon the buyer journey:

  • TOFU Stage: How to guide, tutorials, infographics, educational videos, eBooks, podcasts.
  • MOFU Stage: Product reviews and comparisons, case studies, webinars, niche blogs, multi-expert articles, demos, and free trials.
  • BOFU Stage: Product videos, customer testimonials, FAQs, product manuals, and customer success stories.

Factors like keyword volume, competitor content, and demographic research would give you additional information and help you prioritize topics.

B. Create a Content Calendar

Once you know what type of content you want to create and what topics you want to prioritize, the next step is to organize everything into a content calendar, which must include:

  • Content type (blog, infographic, video)
  • Topic of the content
  • SEO details (Target keywords and Meta tags)
  • Target audience/funnel stage
  • Authors
  • Publish date

Note: You can tailor your content calendar to your team’s requirements. If you don’t know where to start, you can download a free template and then proceed accordingly. Some project management tools also offer calendar options.

C. Create a Distribution Plan

Content creation is essential for the success of an eCommerce website. But it does you no good if you don’t promote it actively. Hence, you should also come up with a content distribution plan.

Here are a few ways to distribute your eCommerce website content:

  • Social media channels
  • Email marketing
  • Groups and forums
  • Networking events
  • Paid media

The choice of the content distribution channels would depend on your target audience’s demography, their preferences, and your desired goals.

Step 5: Execute the Content Strategy

Once you’ve figured out everything, spiral into action and execute the content strategy. But executing the Content Marketing Strategy for eCommerce on your own would not be possible. So, you need helping hands – either a full-service content agency, agencies specializing in SEO content planning, or freelancers who can turn your content briefs into valuable content pieces. The company for eCommerce development that helped you build your eCommerce website can also have a marketing team at disposal. It can save you from the hassle of having to look for a dedicated marketing agency separately.

No matter what help you need, ensure that you have enough resources to successfully execute your content strategy. Also, don’t try to accomplish everything at once. Take it slow and prioritize your content based on what you can accomplish.

Step 6: Measure Your Performance & Optimize

Once you are done with the Content Marketing Strategy for eCommerce, there comes the moment of truth. This is when you would know whether your efforts paid off or not.

Here are the metrics you can use to measure the performance of your content strategy on your eCommerce website:

  • TOFU Content: Website visits, pageviews, time on page, bounce rate, social shares, engagement rate, form submissions.
  • MOFU Content: Number of generated leads, lead-to-customer conversion rates, content downloads, webinar attendance, click-through rate, conversion rate, engagement on case studies, social proof conversion rate.
  • BOFU Content: Conversion rate, abandoned cart rate, repeat purchase rate, customer lifetime value, product reviews, net promoter score (NPS), average order value, revenue attribution.

This is not the end; your content strategy would further evolve over time based on your findings. It may look daunting but over time, you will get the hang of it. So, don’t be shy of experimenting. Keep measuring your performance and optimizing your efforts until you achieve the desired results.

James Wilson is a seasoned Content Writer at Net Solutions, New York, for ten years with an expertise in blogging, writing creative and technical copy for direct response markets, and B2B and B2C industries. Born and brought up in New York, James holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature. He has worked for industries like IT, software product design and development, Lifestyle, and written some great insights on technologies like user experience design, mobile app development, eCommerce, etc. Besides his technical background, he is not very disconnected from the digital in his free time – he loves to binge-watch Netflix.