As has been mentioned previously on my site - starting a blog on your Shopify store can be a really good, lucrative idea.
The niche-targeted traffic that you can generate with a good blog will be able to provide you with a passive stream of sales for your business, and as online advertising platforms become increasingly more competitive, it can be a better idea to start off with long-term traffic methods to grow brand awareness and get steady sales for free.
Before I get into the best Shopify blog templates out there to start building your long-term traffic juggernaut, let's delve deeper into some high ROI activities for your E-commerce blog goals:
Following these next few steps can really expedite the process for your blog and get you sales for the long-term (and you can do this in a relatively short period of time).
Anyone who's familiar with SEO knows that it's essential to go after low-hanging fruit (easy keywords) when first getting started with a new website.
You're not going to have the authority in your space that's required to rank for big boy keywords, so you're better off finding small keywords to build your blog content around.
Writing content consistently around easy to rank for, long-tail keywords is a surefire way to get a steady stream of traffic in no time! Then, you can direct that traffic within your articles, sidebars, headers, etc. towards the product that you're promoting (in this case, our Shopify product pages).
Personally, I've found tons of great keywords by doing general searches on Google for my niche and exploring other brands' content. If you have Ahrefs then you can simply take your competitors' domain name and find their top ranking pages.
If the pages seem to have low competition then you should build some content around that and you'll be well on your way to getting steady trickles of traffic that can turn a fire hose on your businesses' profits. You should also look into acquiring some marketing tools such as cheap email marketing platforms, and/or some great landing page builders such as Clickfunnels or other software alternatives. These can definitely expedite the process towards profitability and growth, and are great to use inconjuction with your e-commerce platform of choice (although, I do highly recommend Shopify).
This way, you're really just paying for the cost of the platform and fleshing out long-term advertising strategies for extreme profitability.
Every post you're doing should be related to your product in some way.
This will make it easy to convert the traffic into paying customers - you can showcase your products inside of each post and link to the product page itself.
Every unique visitor on the blog should get their general search query answered/supported by your content as well as be exposed the product you offer.
For example, if you were in the novelty glasses niche, then you could write content about the best novelty glasses this year, and link to individual eyeglasses that you sell with detailed images and videos of your product (see now how we can easily make long-term profits?). Here's an example of a blog doing this exact method:
Your spider web is essentially the footprint that you're content has on the internet.
While you should be interlinking between posts on your blog and other pages on the site, you should also be going out on other properties and spreading the word about your content.
This is the basis of SEO, and how you can get your content ranked above your competitors/peers. Of course, there are many advanced tactics out there (and really, there are many technical aspects for this on the whole).
However, if you're targeting easy enough keywords, then going out and spreading your content on social media, Q&A sites like Quora, comment sections of other blogs, niche forums, etc. is all it really takes to rank over time for these keywords. That's why it's paramount that you find really easy keywords in step 1, so that way you don't have to try too hard to start ranking!
There are some great ecommerce blogs out there that implement the fundamental principles that I outlined above in spades - and I can guarantee that their content creation for long-term traffic growth is a really valuable project for their brand. This is really what you should be aiming for with your blog!
One of the best examples of this is the Shopify blog itself - they constantly are writing about ecommerce relates trends, topics, concerns, etc. and are well optimized for ranking for specific searchable terms. This gives them a great advantage against their competitors in that they're getting TONS of free traffic that they don't have to pay for, and are able to convert that traffic into paying subscribers (of course, they aren't promoting a physical product and are instead promoting their software platform, but the concept is exactly the same).
Honestly, they have mastered this long-term strategy, and it's certainly a competitive advantage that they have over everyone else!
As I mentioned previously, it's essential that you focus on converting your search traffic from your content creation into paying customers (or at least get them aware of the brand and capture leads for further marketing purposes.
The Bel Kai blog writes outstanding content that gets tons of organic traffic love from the search engines, but they also do a great job at converting this traffic into sales by having beautiful sidebar promotion on all of their blog topics.
This is a textbook perfectly crafted piece of content by Bed, Bath & Beyond that's going to give them a competitive advantage (they're generating sales with ZERO advertising cost once this post has ranked for it's lucrative keyword, which it has).
They wrote a detailed post on candles and linked out to products that they promote, simple enough to execute on and I bet it makes them a ton of sales every single day for their candle section!
Imagine if you had just one article ranked that generates you 5 sales a day from free organic traffic. If each of these sales averaged you $20 in profit, then you're generating $100 a day or $3000 a month (a full time income) just by having an article ranked on your blog and executing well on converting into paying customers. You don't have to worry about advertising costs and the competition on social media marketing platforms, you just sit back, generate sales, and fulfill orders while making a full time income with your brand.
Now, can you imagine if you had 100 articles all ranking and doing this same exact thing? Now you've got a content juggernaut making you big time profits!
Following up on that Bed, Bath & Beyond guide is another great blog post written on Zappos' website.
Zappos created a great piece of content for fall-winter time bundling up. Within that piece of content, they effectively linked out to product pages and included purchase links so that customers can easily be generated from the traffic that comes through to the post.
Again, this is just textbook execution on free traffic conversion rate optimization, and is something that you can implement into your own Shopify store to see great results (just don't try and compete with Zappos at the start, as you won't have the authority to come anywhere close to competing with them).
While Shopify does come equipped with their own blogging "template" - it can be highly limiting.
Upon my research of some of the best page creation tools for the platform, I came across a fantastic application called PageFly.
This platform allows you to implement a ton of different page types for your online store, but they also come equipped with some fantastic blog templates:
These are some premium templates that you can deploy on your own Shopify store using the app (downloadable from the Shopify app store). Unfortunately, this application isn't available on other e-commerce capable platforms such as Squarespace and/or Etsy, but I think Shopify is the best platform for e-commerce (both from a price and feature standpoint), so you should really consider getting on the platform for this app and for the features in general.
I also recommend that you look into getting this theme when starting out (especially if you're in the clothing niche)!