Blogging Essentials for Small Retailers

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“There’s no such thing as content that will be relevant to everyone,”

You’ve probably been hammered with the statistics regarding the effectiveness of blogging, but just in case you haven’t heard, it can do wonders for any small business. It greatly increases leads, drives traffic, spreads brand awareness, keeps websites fresh and updated, builds customer relationships, and so much more.

According to research, 92 percent of companies that blog daily acquire a customer from their blog, and 97 percent have more inbound links as a direct result. This boosts SEO and profits, both important goals for a strong retail blog.

But those benefits only really apply to businesses that blog right. Retailers must take a wise approach and do a few important things in order to promote their products and increase profits.

Use Eye-Catching Design

“ For retailers, the blog design can make all the difference,” says Lizzy Ellingson, co-founder and Chief Creative Officer at BluePrint Registry. “Everything from the imagery to the subliminal messaging of a blog contributes to its downfall or its success.”

This design site points out the necessity of speaking to an audience and designing according to their tastes. A well-designed blog will lead the eye and show customers that you take pride in your business. It can help with subconscious conversions, increase advertising effectiveness, and encourage an excellent user experience.

Rely on Imagery

A big part of having a great blog design is using strong imagery. “The internet is becoming more and more visual every day,” says Ginny Soskey, a blogging contributor to Sharaholic.com. “On social media, we’ve seen Pinterest’s traffic skyrocket, Facebook’s Edgerank favor photos, and Twitter and Instagram go head to head over Twitter cards. All the content that people read online is increasingly more focused on being visually appealing. And your blog isn’t the exception.”

Imagery is great at contriving emotion. Through strong blog photos, infographics, graphs, charts, and other useful imagery, retailers can encourage more interaction and conversions.

Read Up on Competitors

There will always be competition in the market, which is a good thing. It keeps pricing and services competitive and in high demand. It also provides useful inspiration for your own company.

Retailers looking to start a successful blog should begin by reading other successful small business blogs. Subscribing to these blogs will give you ideas with which to create original content and help to successfully write to your target.

There are also many blogs that offer insights specially geared towards small businesses and retailers. Some of the many blogs you should consider subscribing to include:

  • Smart Retail
  • Retail Insider
  • Retail Adventures Blog
  • Retail Minded
  • Retail Customer Experience Blog
  • Forrester Retail Blog
  • Retail Design Blog

Write Relevant Topics

Being relevant and interesting is essential to a strong business blog. It will keep customers coming back and ultimately lead to conversions.

“There’s no such thing as content that will be relevant to everyone,” says renowned blogger Neil Patel. “Relevance is completely audience-dependent. Part of the reason why relevance seems mysterious is because it is often viewed as a static entity – something that you can attain or achieve. In reality, relevance is a dynamic force. It is born in the identity of the user and responded to in the content of the marketer. Relevance is more of a conversation than it is about cool design, a trendy logo, a stylistic flair, or the right colors.”

Perhaps the most important part of achieving relevance on a blog is understanding the audience and what they want to read. Patel goes on to explain that a detailed customer persona can be the vehicle for maintaining relevance on a retail blog. It shows businesses who buys their products and why they’re choosing to do so. This information is integral in understanding who reads your blog and what content they like to see.

Blogging for retailers isn’t an exact science. It will differ depending on the industry and primary customer base. All in all, it’s important for consumers to feel welcome and valued on their blog. They like to read content that’s important to them and makes them feel like they’re getting the best end of the bargain.

With this goal in mind, your retail blog is formatted for success.