Traffic was never an issue for you until one day “BAM!”, your site traffic drops. Your once bustling online store is quieter than a ghost town. Potential customers have suddenly disappeared and you’re left with an online store with no customers. Where did your traffic go? How do you get your customers back? Today we’re sharing 7 strategies to implement when your website traffic drops.

If you already use Google Analytics, you have access to demographics of your visitors. If you do not already have Google Analytics, set it up today. It provides statistics like percentage of returning vs new visitors, bounce rate and referrals source which will help you decide which strategies to implement.

1) Improve Your SEO

If majority of your traffic originated from organic searches, Google’s new search algorithm may be penalizing your site for making one or more of these SEO mistakes. After addressing one … or many of these issues, submit a reconsideration request. You can also submit your updated URL to other site engines like Bing and Dmoz to increase traffic. Prepare for Google to re-index your site by updating your Meta descriptions. They should not only describe your online store but be enticing enough to draw customers in. Next, generate a new site map, which outlines the layout of your website (from the PrestaShop Back Office, Google Sitemap Module, Configure, Generate Sitemap.)

2) Drive Traffic with Social Media

Your online store should have at least one social media account, preferably the one your target customers engage with the most. Not sure which is best? Check out these demographics of social media users put together by PewResearch. After setting up an account, your first order of business it to complete your profile. Your profile should include an appropriate and relevant profile picture as well as a link back to your store. Check out PrestaShop’s Twitter Account for an example! Be sure to contribute relevant information on a regular basis and occasionally promote your products.

3) Leverage Content Marketing

Have you set up a blog for your online store? Get started by reading our previous blog post about content marketing for ecommerce. The important takeaway? Content marketing is a strategy that takes time and dedication. To successfully run and maintain a blog, you must write good and relevant content. Here’s a look at how content marketing drives traffic:

Already using content marketing? Here are 3 tasks to take on today.

  1. Set up Google+ Authorship (to have an author image appear next to your article)
  2. Incorporate color, images and headers tags (such as <h1> )
  3. Use relevant keywords
    • Here’s sample text for an online store selling pens:
      1. Bad: I enjoy selling products online *no keywords used
      2. Very Bad: I enjoy selling pen, pens, cheap pens, blue pens, and personalized pens online. *keyword stuffing
      3. Good: I enjoy selling pens online *specifying with relevant keywords

4) Reach Out to Customers

Email customers to get feedback about your site and suggestions for improvements. Try questions like:

  • “What are your first impressions of our website?”
  • “On a scale from 1-10, how would you rate your experience?”
  • “How can we improve our online store?”

For more examples check out SurveyMonkey’s Customer Satisfaction Surveys. Respect your customer’s time by keeping response times to 5 minutes. Focus your attention on Problems and issues that are often repeated. Also, give customers an incentive to provide feedback by offering an online gift certificate. By doing so, you also drive traffic to your online store.

5) Share Your Knowledge

What are you a self-proclaimed expert at? What need does your online store fulfill? Think of questions potential customers may ask. Then find those customers on forums and answer their questions and suggest an appropriate product.

An example for online stores:

Retailer: PrestaShop Jewelry Store (Harry Fay)
Sample Question: What to get my girlfriend for her birthday?
Sample Answer:
“Necklaces are a good choice as they’re easier for guys to choose.
If she already wears necklace, get a similar one.
Here are two completely different ones that I quickly found.
Owl Necklace
Heart Necklace
Good luck. I know how difficult it is to find presents.”

Also, check out how our Community Manager promoted PrestaShop for the best ecommerce solution on Quora:

6) Start a PPC (Pay Per Click) Advertising Campaign

Run an online advertising campaign on search engine affiliated advertising networks like Google AdWords and Yahoo Bing Ads. Both platforms offer similar functionalities like daily max budgets, Geo location targeting and campaign analytics. Start by determining the budget for your advertising campaign. Next, create a list of keywords or terms that potential customers might search. Finally, write the copy for your ads and start your campaigns. Keep in mind that these two factors drive up the cost of your ads 1) non relevant keywords and 2) the popularity of a keyword.

Aside from PPC Ads, there are many other ways to advertise online. Some examples include Facebook Ads, Promoted Pins, and even through affiliate marketing on ShareASale.

7) Upgrade Your Online Store

Invest in your online store to improve visitors’ user experience. Where exactly should you invest your time? Start by analyzing your site with Google’s Page Speed Insights. The results give you a report with problem areas segmented by a mobile and desktop views. Address mobile/ responsive issues by upgrading to PrestaShop 1.6. If you’re not sure how to make those changes, consider hiring a PrestaShop certified web developer.

Other upgrades to consider include:

  • Upgrading hosting to increase site speed
  • Increasing your advertising budget
  • Purchasing mistyped URLs (Such as for

Which of these strategies will you consider implementing? Try it out and let us know how it works!

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