Online Retailer Hack: Content Driven Ecommerce Helps You Sell More

Regular readers to this blog know that I am a huge believer in creating content on a consistent basis for your website. Content is huge in terms of marketing. It is the process of creating relevant information to attract and engage visitors to your site. I’ve been preaching the importance of creating content on a consistent basis for your website for years, yet most ecommerce sites are simply product-based. You open a typical ecommerce site and see products, prices, a hort description, and (sometimes) long descriptions and specifications. Occasionally you see a rare few following Amazon’s example and showing reviews.

Most ecommerce sites are simply product-based. A content driven ecommerce website on the other hand provides valuable information for the readers in the form of blogs. Click To Tweet

A content driven ecommerce website on the other hand provides valuable information for the readers in the form of blogs and other media, including YouTube videos, as part of the products that they sell. They tell authentic stories about how people are using their products and the results they are getting. This approach is much more powerful and these types of sites allow you to really stand out from your competition. Imagine sharing your customer’s stories every week and categorizing these stories by product type so they can be easily searched. You write a new post every week highlighting how someone has used your product or service, not as a sales piece, but relevant information for your readers. Perhaps your readers have contributed content, or maybe you’ve done a short interview with them to capture their success. The images are of your customers actually using and enjoying what you sell. Then, you give people the opportunity to purchase the product near the end of the story.

With WooCommerce, there are two ways you might do this using shortcodes. You could specify to include a single product page like this:

The problem is that the entire product page is then embedded into your post, including related items and the description. If you just want to include the add to cart button (since you have already included images and prices in your narrative), you can use this shortcode:
Where the id is the actual product id number that you are discussing.

You often see this form of content driven ecommerce with affiliate marketing and long-form sales letters or squeeze pages. But there is no reason you can’t do this with your own online store. In fact, there are a lot of good reasons to do this, even if you also approach your website in a traditional shopping cart mode.

There are a lot of good reasons to use a content driven ecommerce model, even if you also approach your website in a traditional shopping cart mode. Click To Tweet

Search visibility is one reason for considering a content driven ecommerce site. Search engines prefer new content and frequently updated content. They also like longer narratives as that gives them a better understanding of what your product page is really all about. But more importantly, customers love stories. Stories sell more. That alone should be a good reason to consider using a content driven ecommerce approach.

Customers love stories. Stories sell more. That alone should be a good reason to consider using a content driven ecommerce approach. Click To Tweet

Content driven ecommerce can both help educate and inspire. But a common challenge for many companies is that they struggle to […]

Why Consistent Action Matters

Guest post by Benji Bruce

Editor’s note: I got this as an email from Benji and he gave me reprint rights when I contacted him. And while he relates this to the speaking profession, it is very true of marketing any product or service. As business owners, marketing is not a one time thing, it is something we must do everyday. And the more we practice marketing, the more competent we become. Here is his email in it’s entirety:

I was watching Last Chance U on Netflix. It’s a show about college football players who want to make it to the NFL.

And I noticed something VERY interesting.

Almost every athlete they interviewed was certain they would turn pro.

But as you know, that’s not how life happens.

Several of them made bad decisions that ruined their careers.

So it got me thinking…how can you be so sure your life will turn out one way, and it ends up going a completely different direction?

As I watched the show, I kept thinking…

“If they want to play in the NFL, they have to practice when everyone else is resting.”

For most of them, when the coach says practice is over, it’s over.

I thought, “Would Tom Brady (he’s one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history) stop practicing when practice if finished? Or would he practice in his off time?”

The players in the Netflix show were so certain of where their life would end up.

And I’m sure this happens to a lot of people in life.

How certain were you that you would be in a better position in life by now?

How certain were you that you were going to crush it in business?

Only to realize that you’re older and not exactly where you thought you’d be.

Certainty isn’t the precursor to destiny. Competence is.

This is why the ‘law of attraction’ people can ‘wish’ all they want. But without skills to back it up, they go nowhere.

When people tell me they’re destined to be a speaker. That this is their calling…I think…


Do you get what I’m saying?

Certainty of your destiny doesn’t manifest it.

Competence does. Skills do.

Every day that goes by where you’re not working on the things that accomplish your goals is a day you lost to someone who is. Click To Tweet

And every day that goes by where you’re not working on the things that accomplish your goals is a day you lost to someone who is.

You might understand cold emailing can get you booked as a speaker. But how many emails did you send last week?

Or did you distract yourself by working on your book that you’ve been ‘writing’ for a year?

You might understand that spending money on advertising to build your list will help sell your programs. But how much did you spend last week? How many sales did you generate?

Or did you play around, create a couple of Instagram posts, maybe a video, and think that’s going to cut it? […]

Want To Sell More? Reverse The Risk!

Guest post by Eric Graham

Editor’s Note: Eric Graham is a friend and I asked him for reprint rights to this article. It is the perfect followup to last week’s article on making an irresistible offer.

Want the formula for more sales? 💵

Here it is…

🧪 PV > PR = Sale

(Read on to find out what that means…)

🛩 As a pilot and aircraft owner, one of the most important responsibilities I have is managing and reducing the RISK for myself and my passengers.

The same principles apply in business and marketing…

One of the biggest barriers selling more of your products and services is the RISK involved on the part of your buyer.

Think about it…

Particularly if this is their first purchase from you…

Giving their credit card information and hard-earned money to a person or company they have never done business with before is a risky proposition in their mind.

They come into the transaction with an inherent level of mistrust, fear, and skepticism.

And the higher the price of your product or service, the greater the level of perceived risk in your potential buyer’s mind.

This is why $7 “Trip Wire” (personally dislike that term) or “Free Plus Shipping” offers are so popular at the front end of many funnels.

The low price point reduces the perceived risk in the minds of your buyers.

They say to themselves, “If I get ripped-off, so what? It’s only $7!”

The perceived value outweighs the perceived risk.

Your prospects WILL NOT BUY until the Perceived Value (PV) outweighs the Perceived Risk (PR). Click To Tweet

In fact, your prospects WILL NOT BUY until the “Perceived Value” (PV) outweighs the “Perceived Risk” (PR).

It is a simple and reliable formula.

PV > PR = Sale
PV < PR = No Sale

It is predictable and binary.

And it works EVERY TIME!

As long as the perceived risk of taking you up on your offer is lower than the perceived value, they will buy. Period.

And it’s often NOT the loss of the money that is the true “risk” in the transaction.

For many, if not most, prospects…

It is the risk of looking or feeling stupid that is the REAL psychological risk in most offers.

Nobody wants to feel or look stupid…

(That’s a big reason why “IQ Test Offers” are so powerful!)

Money can be replaced…

Loss of STATUS (or self-confidence) on the other hand, is a MUCH bigger “cost” than the loss of a little (or even a lot) of cash.

So, with this in mind, what can we as marketers do to reduce or reverse the perceived (and actual) risk in the offers we make?

There are 2 main ways we can do this… […]

How I Doubled My On-Line Sales – Revealed

Guest post by Terri Levine

You, like me, have a website and you want to have more sales, right? In this article, I will show you exactly how I have done this and doubled my on-line sales and also grew my database by over 19,000 people. Not only has this worked for me, but this system has also helped my client family members grow their incomes and their audiences, too.

Invest In Marketing – Not Advertising

I want you to shift your mindset from advertising to marketing. You must be willing to pay for marketing and shift from thinking everything today is free. I know that in the world of internet marketing everyone wants free traffic and I also know that it is a false economy.  I am about to give you a simple system that works if you are willing to invest a little bit of money in marketing.

You will only be paying for results, not for advertising with this very simple plan. What I am about to reveal will bring a lot of business to your website and help you market the right way and put more income in your pocket.  Are you ready?

The Irresistible Offer

One of the basic precepts of marketing is that anything worth marketing starts with an irresistible offer which causes people to stop and get excited and then grab the offer. Unless you begin with an offer that is irresistible why would people get excited about your website and products and services you have for sale? Most people’s websites don’t provide offers like this and many don’t give people something away that people value. Then they wonder why people aren’t opting in and sales aren’t being made.

Let’s create your irresistible offer right now.  I want you to think of something you can give away to website visitors that costs you no more than $5.00.

Let me give you a few examples from my own clients who I consult with and how they have used this process to make a lot more income.

One of my clients helps authors sell more books with her consulting services. On her website, she offers a done for you video promotion for your book for free when you opt-in.  Instead of her doing this done-for-you service which would take her time, she went over to Fivver and hired someone to create these videos for each opt-in she gets. She pays the contractor at Fivver only $5,00 per video.  Keep in mind what I said earlier, you are going to be investing money in results not advertising. Instead of budgeting for ads, my client is spending the money on actually delivering a valuable done for you service.

Prior to working with this client was investing in pay per click ads.  I told her to stop the pay per click ads and switch to this idea.  Instead of putting money into ads she is now paying someone to create something her exact target audience wants and needs. The cost of each video is $5.00 and she was paying more than $5.00 per lead on ads.

The results? When these videos are delivered people say, “wow” and are excited to find out more about working with her.

Now, if you aren’t a consultant or in a service business, this still works. […]


I did not write this. It came in an email from TheHOTH. But the message is so strong and on target that I have to share it on this blog. a very savvy marketer asked an Inc 5000 recipient on how to grow his business:

My #1 piece of SEO advice to double your business

“If I hired you and paid you $2 million dollars to come into my business and run marketing, what would you do?”

I told him the first thing that I would do is take an inventory of all the questions, misconceptions, doubts, & fears that customers have before they buy.

All the stuff they need answers to before they buy.

All the stuff that is preventing them from buying.

All the stuff they ask you on the phone before they sign up.

Then take all those answers that you have in your head, write them down and put them…


Take all those answers that you have in your head, write them down and put them......ON YOUR BLOG. Click To Tweet

Now, instead of you explaining these things every single time, your potential buyers can find them when they search online.

They’ll find your articles, get answers, start trusting you as the authority and click over to your sales page.

This is inbound marketing & SEO at it’s finest…

…and that is the core of how you can become one of the fastest-growing companies in the US.

As an Inc. 500 myself (not just the 5000) I could not agree more. Its why I write a new blog post every single week. And its why […]

Choosing Keywords Wisely

For the past few weeks I’ve been talking about ranking on Google using YouTube videos. This is critical for your business because, according to Neil Patel, less than 25% of ALL websites are ever visited by ANYONE! Getting found for your chosen keywords is vital to your ability to do business online.  One of the things I’ve talked about is to use your keywords in the title, description, tags, and even in your audio script. But how exactly do you select the keywords that you wish to rank for? That is the topic of today’s post.

Less than 25% of ALL websites are ever visited by ANYONE! -Neil Patel Click To Tweet

Keywords are simply those words that are entered into a search engine. One of the best descriptions about how to use keywords that I’ve seen is by the Yoast SEO plugin, which you can read here.

For example, if you are looking for light bulbs, you would enter “light bulbs” into the search engine. Of course, that isn’t very descriptive, and you are going to get millions of results for something that generic. Ranking for a generic term like light bulbs is not only difficult, but expensive. and worse, the probability of someone buying a light bulb from you after searching on those words is highly unlikely. If we get a little more specific, like “LED light bulbs”, we are still going to get thousands of web sites returned to us, and again, it would be both difficult and expensive to rank for these words. The more descriptive you can be with your keywords, the more likely it is that someone will find your site and actually do business with you.

The more descriptive you can be with your keywords, the more likely it is that someone will find your site and actually do business with you. Click To Tweet

This is what is termed as long tail keywords. The good news is that long tail keywords comprise 70% of all searches performed online. So, if someone is searching for “Where can I buy long-lasting dimmable LED light bulbs for my kitchen in Parker, Colorado?” and you have a page on your website that specifically is optimized for long-lasting dimmable LED light bulbs for your kitchen, and you are located in Parker, CO, well, you will probably get found when that search is created, and that person will probably buy from you. When you create a YouTube video addressing those same keywords, and link that video back to that page on your website, you simply become the best answer on the internet for that person’s needs.

Of course, there are far fewer people asking that specific question, but for the ones that are, you are the solution. Long tail keywords contain a keyphrase (generally three or four words) highly specific to what you are selling. This helps you to find highly targeted customers looking to buy exactly what you’re selling. This makes long tail keywords immensely useful for PPC and SEO and they always outperform generic keywords in terms of conversion rates. In fact, long tail keywords convert 2.5 times more frequently than short tail keywords. Back to the question, how do you determine the best keywords to use? It used to be fairly simple to do this, as […]

How To Write a Thrilling Script for a 90 Second Product Video

Last week’s blog post talked about how to rank on Google in 30 seconds using YouTube videos and utilizing the title, description, and tag fields to include your keywords. but what about actually making the video to upload in the first place? What are some of the best practices, especially if you are selling a product online? This week I’m going to layout for you exactly how to craft your script for maximum views and better yet, conversions (sales).

It used to be that the video itself didn’t really matter for SEO purposes, the only thing that mattered was the title, description, and tags being used. That is no longer the case. YouTube uses voice to text recognition software and cannot only determine if you are using copyrighted music illegally, but can also determine what you are saying. In fact, it uses this technology to close captioning, so your script is highly important. Yes, you will want to use your keywords correctly in your script too. YouTube can also determine what images/video clips are in your video, much like Google’s image search can determine similar images to what you are searching for (remember, YouTube is owned by Google), so again, don’t use copyrighted images or your video could be banned (or worse).

When creating a product video, you do not just want to hold up a product and talk about what it does. Rather, you want to tell a story that engages your viewer. Click To Tweet

When creating a product video, you do not just want to hold up a product and talk about what it does. Rather, you want to tell a story that engages your viewer. You may want to show the product in action – by demonstrating how it is actually used. But remember, this is essentially a commercial that we are talking about, not a training video or tech support tutorial (that’s a different, but equally valuable type of video for a different purpose). What we want to create for this blog is a 1 to 2 minute product video for the primary purpose of search engine placement and driving traffic to your site so the viewer can buy the product. That means that you will want to also embed the finished video on the product page.

Okay, so here is […]

How to Rank on Page 1 of Google in less than 30 Seconds

The number one question that any web designer gets asked is “How can I get listed on page 1 of Google?” While there are no 100% guarantees, the method I’m going to describe in this post will likely land you in that coveted spot, especially for geographically based searches. We have proven this method over and over again and it works, without paying huge sums of money or waiting months to get ranked. Doing this involves the use of YouTube (a Google owned property). Here’s why this works:

80% of all internet content consumed today is Video. People spend 88% more time on a website with video, and 72% of visitors prefer video. Companies that create video content earn 41% more traffic from search engines results than those who don’t. Adding a video to a landing page can increase conversion rates by 80%.

Only 9% of all businesses actually are using YouTube. Click To Tweet

Yet, only 9% of all businesses actually are using YouTube. Did you hear what I just said? Only 9% of businesses are actually using YouTube! YouTube is the number 2 search engine and the 3rd most popular website in the world. If you utilize YouTube properly, you can get to the top of Google. These are the steps to follow… […]

Ecommerce Trends That Affect You

Strong Customer Authentication

Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) is a new regulation taking effect on September 14, 2019 that requires merchants to use multiple methods of verifying customers’ identities. While this is a European compliance issue, it will impact US merchants as well. To help you comply with the new requirements — and make sure your sales don’t have declined payments, here is what you need to know.

Starting in September, merchants accepting online payments will need to use two independent authentication methods to verify that a customer is who they say they are.

What kinds of authentication are acceptable?

SCA allows for three different authentication methods — something the customer knows, something the customer has, and something the customer is. To succeed, a transaction has to use two of the three.

What does that mean in practice?

    • Asking for a piece of information only the customer knows, like their password or the answer to a security question.
    • Sending verifying information to something the customer controls, like a hardware token or a push notification sent to their phone.
    • Using a physical identifier unique to the customer, like a fingerprint or Face ID.

What do I need to do to prepare?

Most payment gateways will use 3D Secure 2 – an update to the 3D Secure system – as their main method of complying with SCA. During checkout, the payment gateway will prompt the customer to provide the additional authentication elements, and the order will only be completed once they do that successfully.

If you are using WooCommerce with Stripe and or PayPal as your Payment Gateway, these are already SCA ready, so you will not have to do anything.

Marketplaces Versus Your Own Ecommerce Website

Amazon is of course the largest eommerce site, and many businesses use this platform as their primary method of selling online. eBay is a distant second to Amazon. But as third-party sellers become more prominent on Amazon’s marketplace, many want to expand to other platforms, and eBay is the most popular secondary option, 56% per Feedvisor (April 2019). In fact, this far outshines personal sites (12%), Walmart, brick-and-mortar stores and smaller online marketplaces.

If you are already selling online via your own website and using WooCommerce as your shopping cart platform, there is good news – you can integrate your online store by listing your product catalog on both Amazon and eBay’s global network of 40+ online marketplaces and reach millions of potential customers in minutes. You can sync inventory, orders, pricing, and product details in real-time. Here’s how. […]

Should I Still Be Blogging?

Over time, the internet has changed. People engage more with posts on social media platforms that they do with posts that you create on your own blog. Plus, blog posts tend to be much longer, typically 800 words or more. People have short attention spans and as a result, no one reads an entire post, much less a book. In fact, they don’t even read their emails. They just scan it to get the major ideas. Since blogs don’t have the traction they once did, the question is often asked, “Should I even bother writing blog posts anymore?”

It depends. Blogs are a great way to create fresh content that search engines find important. This in turn drives traffic to your website. So if you want to get quality, organic traffic to your website on a regular basis, then you absolutely MUST create new consistent content in the form of a blog.

On the other hand, if you don’t care about anyone ever finding your site, or you are willing to pay large sums of money for advertisements to drive people to your website, then by all means, don’t ever write another blog post.

OK, so I know this […]

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