Competing With Big Brands - How Small E-commerce Sites Can Use Blogging to Their Advantage

Competing With Big Brands - How Small E-commerce Sites Can Use Blogging to Their Advantage

Small e-commerce sites may often find that those ranking in the top positions for what they’re selling are e-commerce industry giants like Amazon. But there’s more than one way to increase traffic and revenue on a site.

It’s easy to become obsessed chasing higher ranking positions for short-tail keyword terms with broad appeal. But when these are the terms you’re most likely to be outranked for then you have to turn to other tactics. Blogging allows small e-commerce sites to take on their biggest competitors by allowing them to:

  • Rank for long-tail keyword terms that are often easier to rank for than short-tail keywords
  • Create content that provides something valuable to share on social media accounts
  • Open up the possibility to work with industry influencers

This blog will focus on creating content around long-tail keywords that provides e-commerce sites with content that ranks for a broad range of keywords around core product ranges, providing increases in traffic and ultimately sales and revenue.

Researching blog topics

When generating topics for your blog it’s always worth checking if there’s an audience for your ideas. Using Google Trends is a great way to research the popularity of topics or keywords that relate to your e-commerce business.

With Google Trends you can see if the topic you plan on writing about is being searched for a lot right now, or even if there are regular repeating trends year-over-year which you can also take advantage of in planning a long-term content strategy.

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The above example shows the impact of COVID-19 on searches for ‘home workouts’, a sudden increase in popularity because people are spending more time at home.

An e-commerce business that sells exercise equipment or provides guided home workouts could capitalise on this popularity by creating useful content for their blog that focuses on this search term and other similar long-tail keywords to help generate more traffic to their site.


How to generate effective long-tail keyword ideas

Finding good long-tail keywords naturally begins with some in-depth keyword research. But first of all, how long should a long-tail keyword be? Generally, any keyword comprised of four words or more constitutes a long-tail keyword. The longer the keyword is, the easier it should be to rank for.

There are a number of tools, both paid and free, available to help you generate long-tail keyword ideas. We like to use SEM Rush, but free resources such as UbersuggestAnswer The Public and even Google itself are also useful. Whichever tool you use the process is the same:

  • Begin with a seed keyword, a short-tail keyword with broad appeal you want to riff off
  • Enter your seed keyword into your chosen keyword tool and search for long-tail keyword variations from the results - they will be four or more words long and have a search volume in the hundreds or lower depending on your niche
  • Pull together a refined list of the most relevant-in-demand long-tail keywords that fit together nicely and begin planning your blog article

For the following example we used SEM Rush and a seed keyword of ‘home workouts’.

The short-tail keyword ‘home workouts’ has a search volume of 14,800 meaning that ranking for it is likely to be incredibly competitive and difficult to do. This is why we’re going to turn to long-tail variations of this keyword for our small e-commerce site blog.

We know that home workouts are popular just now because of our Google Trends research. Using the SEM Rush keyword generator’s filter options we were able to compile a list of popular questions around home workouts that we could use for a blog article. These long-tail keywords have a smaller search volume and so are likely to be less competitive and easier to rank for.

By producing a really useful piece of content that targets some of these long-tail keyword terms we are likely to rank for them and increase our site’s visibility in the search results.

Do this many times over with other keywords related to the business and we are likely to begin generating a constant stream of traffic to the site.

Final Thoughts

In many cases, e-commerce giants may not be paying attention to blogging or chasing these long-tail keywords because they have the power of their brand name to leverage in the search results instead. However, this is exactly the reason this tactic works for smaller brands. Do it well and it can even increase your brand awareness to the point where you become one of the e-commerce giants in your niche.

As useful as this tactic is, it also requires a solid foundation of SEO work to make sure your site is capable of ranking for these new keyword terms including, technical, on-page and off-page SEO elements.

If you would like to discuss your content strategy or SEO campaign then contact us today.


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