We’re always interested in blogging power and how it helps online consumers make purchasing decisions. Recently, content marketing effectiveness and importance came to light in a personal situation. This is the story and what lessons we can learn.
Blogging Power When It Comes To Customer Research
The time had come recently for my eldest daughter to be taken on her first makeup trip. Ever conscious of the need for eco-friendly and non-toxic products we wanted to get a child friendly nail polish.
Last year, 44% of all ecommerce began with a search engine and 70% of in-store sales began online. This is exactly how my wife started out. She took to Google to search for a suitable product. Expecting to find some of the major brands advertising their available products, my wife was surprised to find that “child safe nail varnish” returned few high street returns.
Only Amazon and Claire’s Accessories were on the first page, but not in the top three. Amazon was placed fifth and Claire’s Accessories were seventh. This is important. The lower the ranking on Google, the fewer visitors you will achieve. Research has found that the top spot’s click through rate is 60%, second spot’s is 40% and third spot’s is 20%.
Another issue was that many of the results returned a different solution to that which my wife was seeking. Many were talking about water based products. My wife didn’t want a water-based product and she wanted to take our daughter on a special trip for the occasion. As most of the results were water based and Amazon doesn’t have a physical store, my wife refined her search to: ‘formaldehyde free nail polish’.
Again the expectation was for large brands to corner the market. Yet they didn’t. The top results weren’t stores selling their products, but beauty blogs and women’s magazines offering their advice. These articles really demonstrated blogging power. On a search where high streets need to be cornering the market, small, independent bloggers like Sarah Wilson or beauty blogs like Well & Good were attracting attention on Google and dominating the search results.
Yet this was still not the right search. My wife found (from the blogs) that the correct term she should have been using was “big 5 free nail polish”. This search again yielded the same results and more evidence for blogging power. Not a single high street brand appeared on either of the latest search results while smaller beauty bloggers dominated.
Yet the information contained was vital for my wife to use in selecting the right nail polish for my daughter, so she could go into store with awareness of the brands. Like 61% of consumers, she had used content in blogs to make a purchasing decision. Research has also shown that businesses that blog receive 70% or more leads than those that don’t.
Blogging Power Lessons
Blogging power is here. Customers are using it to find out information about products and services they want to purchase every single day. High street companies often forget about the best practices and use their blogs to just advertise products; the latest trends and sale items, which isn’t highly valuable and customers won’t frequent them very often.
This should be a concern for many large brands. High street sales continue to decline as consumers flock to online selling options. Yet the opportunity is there for them, as it is for smaller retailers.
What all retailers need to do is first recognise blogging power and then determine how they can provide highly valuable information in their blogs.
Just because a brand is big, it doesn’t mean that it can’t have a highly informative blog and engaging social media campaign.
Selling is not an answer. It doesn’t build trust which is vital in the online sales purchasing path. Instead, useful information and solving consumer problems will attract brand loyalty and customers through brick and mortar stores or by encouraging online orders.
Are you using blogging power to grow your business? What results do you see?
Let us know in the comments.