Today I’m starting a new post series on Traffic Generation. Traffic is THE most important element in any online business and eCommerce Shops are no exception. You can have the greatest looking shop, with the best products and prices but if no one visits your site, it’s worthless.
Traffic = Sales = Profit!
As an online shop owner you should always be working on new traffic generation methods and Infographics is the new kid on the block. If we look at Google Trends for the term “infographics”, we can clearly see that it’s a new trend which started just a few years ago and is currently exploding in popularity:
We all know how big of an impact YouTube had on the popularity of video and the same can be said for infographics and Pinterest. Pinterest pretty much took the concept of infographics, and turbo-charged it!
There are millions of Pinterest users who share (Pin) images and infographics with other users around the globe.
People like infographics because they’re EASY! Yes, they’re easy to read and understand! More and more people nowadays prefer to scan information published online, due to the busier than ever lifestyles we have. People are just more likely to check out an infographic than read a long piece of text – that’s the 21st century for you!
This means only one thing – a brand new traffic generating method that is especially suitable for online shops! We have products, we have nice product images and detailed descriptions – why not put it all together and create an infographic?
But what is an infographic in the first place?
An infographic is a visual image such as a chart or diagram used to represent information or data.
That’s what Google says. And Google is right, as always.
As you can see; infographics are heavily based on images, not text, are usually quite long and visually good looking. While classic infographics will contain lots of numbers, charts and similar data, there are NO hard rules to follow! And in eCommerce we can get super creative and create an infographic on any topic we want… more on that later though where I’ll give you some good examples.
Before that, we have to find out what makes a good infographic and WHY it’s so important to make it VALUABLE! At the end of the day, it’s just another form of online content we can produce and content MUST be VALUABLE! Otherwise there’s no point in creating it.
So, what makes a good infographic?
It has to contain valuable information, it has to be interesting and it has to look great!
And then you need to know how to promote it so people can actually find and share it with others.
If you’re not willing to put some time and energy into creating your infographic, don’t even start – seriously! The internet is FULL of garbage content produced by low skilled outsourcers, lazy writers and spammers. We don’t need any more of that. A boring and poorly created infographic simply won’t get you any traffic and is basically a waste of your time.
If you really want to make this work, follow these 4 steps to create a superb infographic that will generate traffic for you on auto pilot for years to come:
Step 1 – Gather Data
The first thing you need to do is come up with a topic for your infographic and then gather data, which in this case would be images + text.
Ideally you want to use your own data – your own, unique images and text – but there are times when you can actually use content that’s already available on the net and simply turn it into an infographic. When you do this, just make sure you credit the original content source.
What type of infographic can you create to promote a product in your online shop?
Here are some of the most popular approaches (though you’re not limited to them):
- Infographic on how to use the product you sell. Like in my example, with food items, recipes are a PERFECT way to promote such products in infographics. If you sell beads, create an infographic with various beading techniques and finished products that can be made out of those beads. And so on.
- Infographic about features of the product. Yes, you can simply create an infographic that lists all the features of a particular product. Such images can also be published directly in your shop, on the product page.
- Infographic for product comparisons. Take two or more similar products and compare them in an infographic. VERY POWERFUL!
- Infographic for product reviews. Yes, you can turn a product review into an infographic, which will be more interesting and attractive than a plainly written version.
- Infographic about a product’s history. These are quite popular and will work perfectly in niches where electronics and similar products with a history are involved. In such infographics you can cover the various previous versions this product has OR even show the history behind the invention of it.
- Infographic about a product’s benefits. For example, if you sell electronic cigarettes, you’ll cover the money saving aspect and other benefits such electronic cigarettes present. These infographics will talk purely about the BENEFITS people gain when buying your item – not to be confused with the ‘features infographic’ covered earlier.
- Flow chart infographics. In these, you would create a test-like flow chart to help people choose the best product for their needs. For example, if you sell digital cameras; you could start with a question – how much money you can spend on your camera, then follow with size requirements and so on until at the last stage you give a product or several products that are suitable for that person’s needs.
These are just a few good examples on what type of infographics you can create. Be creative and try to think about what type of content/information would be most valuable to your particular target audience! Think about all of those questions people have in mind BEFORE they make that buying decision. If you can answer those questions via an infographic, chances are it will generate a lot of highly targeted traffic to your shop.
Once you have a topic and data on hand, it’s time to…
Step 2 – Create a Story
The more interesting your story is, the more clicks and traffic you’ll get. People like to be entertained, not bored, so use that to create an infographic that is so good people naturally Like It on Facebook and share it with their friends.
Use twists, interesting titles and angles. Don’t just turn a boring article into a boring infographic.
The most important thing here is to ensure your TITLE sound interesting, even slightly controversial.
Learn from traditional magazines, newspapers and books. Borrow headlines if you can’t come up with your own. Do whatever it takes to INTRIGUE your potential customers enough that they click on your infographic to see what it’s about.
Let’s take a look at some bad, boring titles and good, interesting examples:
Using water decals for custom iPhone skins
How to Create a UNIQUE iPhone Skin in 10 minutes!
iPhone compared to Samsung Galaxy
Mobile Showdown: iPhone 5s VS Samsung Galaxy S4!
How to choose a good food dehydrator
10 Crucial Things you need to know before buying a Food Dehydrator!
I will leave it up to you to decide which versions are better and will generate a higher CTR!
Lastly, don’t use a lot of text in your infographics! Remember, visuals come first here and text should only be used as a complement. Make short paragraphs with lots of sub-headlines. Write it in a way that people can understand everything by just reading the sub-headlines. Only use longer sentences to explain the sub-headline in more detail.
Step 3 – Design It
The next step is to actually create/design your infographic. A lot of people don’t do this ONLY because they think they have to be good designers to create outstanding infographics. NOT ANYMORE!
While a good eye for design will definitely help you create better looking infographics, you don’t have to be a professional designer to get this task done:
Custom infographics are not cheap though. While you can find some decent, low priced gigs on Fiverr, expect to pay $100 and even more for a custom made infographic. Not ideal when we use these for traffic purposes and can’t know for sure what the ROI will be, right? Yes, and that’s exactly why I actually recommend using one of the other two options instead.
• Use Templates. There are hundreds and thousands of free and paid Photoshop templates available online. If you’re already using Photoshop, this can be a great, cheap/free way to create your own infographics using pre-made templates. Just change the text plus add your own images and you’re good to go!
Here are some good resources for infographics templates:
• Infogr.am. For most people, this will be by far the best way to create infographics for FREE! Yes, a basic account on Infogr.am is free and it’s super simple to use. All you do is select a template and then using blocks; build your infographic exactly the way you like. My Paleo Way infographic was built using Infogr.am and I made it in less than 20 minutes.
The only downside to Infogr.am is that the free account doesn’t allow you to download the infographics you create. But that can easily be fixed by using a screen capture tool (or browser extension). You simply preview your infographic in Infogr.am and take a screen capture to save the image on your computer.
To sum it up – if you don’t want to do this on your own, pay someone else. If you’re good with Photoshop, use pre-made infographic templates. If you don’t want to spend any money and can’t use Photoshop, go with the last option, which is – Infogr.am!
Step 4 – Share it
The last step is to distribute your newly created infographic so that you can start to generate traffic from it.
In essence, this process is very similar to any other content distribution and here are the most popular distribution channels:
• Infographic directories. Click here for a list of 43 infographic directories.
• Facebook. Post it on your Facebook fan page or time line.
• Twitter. Tweet about your newly created infographic and share a link to your shop where it’s published, Pinterest or any other place where you have submitted your infographic.
• Pinterest. Upload your infographic to your Pinterest account.
• Google+. Publish it on Google+ time line.
• Forums. If you’re active on some niche related forums, post your infographic there. Listen to the comments/feedback you get from other forum members to make your next infographic even better.
• Blogs. If you have a blog, publish your infographics there. If you don’t have a blog but have close relationships with other bloggers in your industry, you could ask them to post your infographics on their blogs.
• YouTube. Yes, you can even turn your infographic into a video and publish it on YouTube, Vimeo and other video sharing sites. What you do is make a video version of it by using screen capture software such as Camtasia and add voice narration or at least music to make it more entertaining.
If you know any other websites in your niche where you can submit infographics, by all means do so! The more places you can submit it to, the better! People will see your infographics and start sharing them with others. Plus you’ll start getting direct traffic from these websites and Google Images.
Outstanding infographics go viral very quickly and this can result in thousands of targeted visitors to your online shop. Not bad for something that can be created for FREE!
Ok, let’s sum it all up!
Infographics are great for eCommerce Shop owners as there will never be a shortage of topics we can create infographics about. I can’t imagine a single niche where you couldn’t create infographics – prove me wrong!
This is a long term strategy – so don’t expect results overnight! Try to create and distribute one infographic each week and do this for at least 3-4 months. Then you can start to analyse your results and see what ROI you’re achieving.
Make sure to include your brand (LOGO) and link to your shop everywhere – on the infographic itself and on the sites that you share it. Some will allow you to add a link to your infographic so that when people click on the image, they go to your site. This works best and will guarantee you direct traffic from viewers.
Also, make sure the image file name (the title) contains the keywords you’re targeting as the title of the infographic will be used in most places as the H1 and Page Title so it must be GOOD and contain your main keyword.
Remember though – this IS NOT all about direct traffic! What we’re doing here is building super high quality back-links to your shop! This is even more important than direct traffic as over-time Google will take these links into account when ranking your website and product pages.
Constant action brings results. This is not for lazy or impatient people. As with anything in life, nothing is easy when you’re aiming for the BEST!
Create your first infographic and distribute it. Rinse & repeat. That’s all there is to it.