5 Digital Marketing Strategies to Drive Visitors to Your Store
Digital strategies provide some of the best opportunities to drive foot traffic and in-store sales, yet many marketers under-utilize their potential. Here are 5 things you can do immediately to take advantage of your digital channels:
1. Improve the areas of your website that are business-related.
Your would-be customers online are already on the lookout for information to help them decide to visit your store.
Make sure your branch locator is up-to-date and easy to use, especially for mobile users. Can it be easily located on your header or navigation bar? If not, potential customers might get turned off and go elsewhere.
Improve individual menu highlight pages on your website. They reflect the desirability and attraction of your offers. Check if you have uninspiring design elements, jumbled directories or bland listings.
Make sure all the information your customers need are found on these pages. At the least, these should include your address, contact details and opening hours.
The best pages provide:
• An interactive map
• Driving and transportation directions
• Parking information
• Access and mobility info for persons with disability
• Good photographs
• In-store events
• Social media links
• Basic staff information
Add additional information that customers will find useful. Unleash your creative juices and find a way to make your content so interesting that viewers would want to visit your store.
2. Optimize for Local Search
There are big opportunities for local businesses to optimize their site for local search. If you have unique offers, people looking for it on their mobile devices are most likely in the vicinity. They may need just a little push from your page to make them visit your store.
Say you have a restaurant. A family shopping for clothes at a store nearby decides to have lunch. When they search for restaurants on their mobile, Google and other search engines will automatically list dining places in your area. If you’ve done local search optimization to put your restaurant on page one, then you have the best chance for that family to click your site and see what’s on your menu. They are customers to be had if you make the effort.
Confirm this for yourself. Go to your store and search for your product or service on your mobile phone. Does your store come up in results? When you click on your link, do you land on your website?
3. Offer Click and Collect Items
If you don’t offer Click and Collect, it’s time to start now. You don’t need to have an online payment system to do this. You can offer discount coupons or other items that customers can redeem at your store when they visit. Local research have consistently reported retailers getting 15% to 25% additional sales when they have this facility.
You don’t have to be a multi-city operation to benefit from this type of promotion. While there are some advantages in economies of scale, even single-location stores can do this promotion effectively and profitably. You may already have the digital channels to implement click and collect. If not, there are many ways to get one easily and on budget.
Tip: Take payment online and not on collection. You don’t need to ask for full payment to get customers to collect their order.
4. Mobilize Your Social Media fans
If you’ve been in business for a while, you’re likely to have fans who are ready to engage with your brand, and have their permission to market to them.
• Motivate them to visit your business by offering a social coupon. One that can be shared with friends, downloaded or printed out, then brought to your store for redemption. It’s one way to take an online interaction into real world sales.
• Post positive experiences that your customers had on social media. Show your viewers what a great time they had at your store. People will readily empathize with positive experiences when they see them.
• Your business benefits a great deal when social media viewers see people having meaningful life interactions at your place. Share these moments at your store on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to create positive buzz about your business.
• Keep your fans updated on any in-store promotion or event via email and social media. Highlight any perks or exclusive offers that can only be redeemed in-store. Best results are achieved when you target your posts based on customer demographics, location and purchase history. This is particularly effective if you have multiple branches and you’re having an event at only one branch. Emphasize this event in your email or post to people in that area to get best results.
5. Measure What Works
It’s very important to implement a method of tracking the success of your digital marketing strategies.
• Rather than using number of page visits, impressions or likes, focus on metrics that lead to actual sales. These measurements should be based on specific customer actions.
• Where did your web visitors come from? How do you differentiate online visitors who just came to see from those who are actually looking to buy?
• Who are your loyal customers? What are their favorite orders? What brings them to visit your store again and again?
You can get accurate answers to these questions by measuring the right metrics from the torrent of data available at your website. If you use Google Analytics you get the added benefit of getting them for free.
Tip: Time spent on your site is a good indicator of interest for your offers. See which pages visitors lingered the most. Find out how visitors came to arrive at these pages.
What’s important for marketers is to leverage the data they capture in the right way to improve in-store visits and actual purchases. Don’t get caught in big data hype. Focus on context and buyer behaviors. It’s only through improved decision making that business owners and marketers begin to see a return on their investments.