Selling on Shopify: How To Set Up An ECommerce Store

Selling on Shopify: How To Set Up An ECommerce Store

Selling on Shopify As the world is ever-changing, more and more people are doing their shopping online. From basic necessities to clothing and groceries, just about everything is available for purchase through the World Wide Web. Perhaps you have a brick and mortar store or you’re just getting started and seek only to sell online, but you just don’t know where to start. There are numerous ecommerce-specific platforms available, but the ecommerce experts here at Root & Roam agree that Shopify is the gold standard. 

Shopify is a full featured, robust platform that handles the most nitty gritty of online selling. They have made it simple to process payments, create shipping labels, and design the actual look and feel of your website all in one place. Shopify has even built in various high-powered and highly effective ecommerce marketing tools. Gone are the days of confusing, clunky, hard-coded ecommerce websites. So, just how do you set up a Shopify store? Read on for our expert guide.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

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Selling on Shopify

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How to set up a Shopify store

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Utilize ecommerce marketing

HOW TO SET UP A SHOPIFY STORE

First things first—Shopify offers a 14-day free trial, and, once your trial period has expired, Shopify offers three tiers ranging in price from $29 to $299 per month. All of these plans will get the job done. However, the higher tiers give you access to more features like advanced reporting and deeper discounts on shipping. Advanced reporting in Shopify allows you access to reports such as a live view of your website, customer statistics, information on how your customers find your website, and more. Once you have selected the plan that best fits your needs, the setup process begins and consists of the following steps:

Choose a Shopify Theme.

Shopify offers several free themes, as well as third party paid themes in their Shopify theme store. The free themes are definitely enough to get you started. However, if you want more styling options and features, you’ll want to browse through the paid themes. Shopify’s themes are all mobile-friendly, and you won’t have to worry about configuring for mobile devices. Once you’ve chosen a theme, you can start customizing it and plugging in your content as you see fit. Don’t forget to develop your navigation, customize your checkout pages, and add legal pages like a privacy policy and terms of use.

Create Your Products.

Adding your products is relatively straightforward. Shopify has all of the necessary fields within their product listing sections. Be sure to complete as many fields as possible and use thorough, keyword-heavy product descriptions. Add high-resolution images that showcase different views of each product. Input pricing, skus, inventory, etc., for each product. You’ll also need to categorize each product into the appropriate “collection.” The collection a product belongs to will determine how the products are displayed on your website.

Determine Payment Methods.

What payment methods do you plan to accept? You’ll need to set this up in Shopify settings. Will you accept all major credit cards? What about Apple Pay, Google Pay, Amazon Pay, or PayPal? It is during this step that you will also need to provide your business information so that you can receive payouts.

Configure Shipping.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to your shipping terms. Do you plan to offer free shipping, flat rate shipping, or calculated shipping? Are you able and willing to ship internationally, or do you plan to only ship domestically? Will you use multiple carriers or stick with one tried-and-true option? It is imperative to determine your shipping structure up front and configure all options to match. If you plan to offer real-time, calculated shipping rates at checkout, you will need to shop and install a third party app from the Shopify app store.

Don’t Forget to Collect Tax.

Depending on the types of products you sell, where you are shipping them, and where you are physically located, you will need to configure the tax section in Shopify settings. Obviously, it is important to comply with all state and federal tax guidelines.

Test and Retest Your Store.

Once you have set up your Shopify store, it’s imperative that you test all aspects. Click around the front side to ensure all links are properly configured. Check to be sure your products are categorized in a way that makes sense and your product listings and individual product pages appear as you want. Add products to your cart, and walk through the checkout process, paying close attention to shipping options and the collection of taxes. Essentially, do anything and everything to try to “break” your site or the rules you’ve set in place. If everything operates as it should, you’re ready to go live!

    HOW TO UTILIZE ECOMMERCE MARKETING

    Shopify offers an assortment of ecommerce marketing tools to help you make more sales. One of the simplest ways to grow your audience is by encouraging visitors to sign up for email newsletters or SMS (text) updates, special offers, and announcements. Once you’ve gained these leads, you can build marketing campaigns to drum up site visits and increase conversions. You’ll want to use a third party service like Klaviyo, Omnisend, MailChimp, or Wishpond to create flows and push customers or potential customers through the funnel. If you choose to run SMS campaigns, be sure to meet all legal obligations in your Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy!

    Shopify Abandoned Cart Emails

    Another simple marketing tool that Shopify offers is abandoned cart emails. These emails are sent out at a specified time if a shopper places items in their cart but does not complete the checkout process. Shopify offers basic abandoned cart emails, but to really make the process more robust, it is recommended to use a third party service like Klaviyo. According to Shopify Partner Ezra Firestone, “Ecommerce customers who receive multiple abandoned shopping cart emails are 2.4 times more likely to complete the purchase than those who receive only one follow up email. And customers who receive multiple abandoned cart emails have a multiple transaction rate 44 percent higher than those who didn’t.”*

    Shopify Integrations

    Shopify integrates with several other platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Google to boost your efforts to the next level. You can use these integrations to build ad audiences to retarget and upsell your current customers, build like audiences that would be interested in your business based on the profiles of those who are already your customers, and re-engage users who visited your website but did not complete a purchase. Use a free Shopify app like Kit to build targeted social media ads and campaigns. (Kit is free, but you will pay social media platform fees for running ads.) 

    The ecommerce marketing options are truly endless. However, anything beyond basic needs will require the use of a third party app. When you find the one that fits all your needs, the cost is well worth it!

      Shopify Best Practices

      Now that your Shopify store is up and running, and you’ve got some ecommerce marketing campaigns in place, it’s time to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Don’t get too comfortable just yet, though! Successful websites and marketing campaigns are consistently monitored, weak spots identified, and adapted to be even more effective. The World Wide Web and all of its various algorithms are constantly evolving. Thus, it is important to stay up-to-date on advancements and trends and adjust accordingly. 
      If you find yourself in need of a new ecommerce site, or you’re unable to stay atop of the constantly changing environment, give the Shopify experts at Root & Roam Integrated Marketing Agency a call. We have extensive experience in both developing and designing Shopify websites, as well as running highly successful ecommerce campaigns.

      Resources

      Pederson’s Natural Farms: Holiday Food Styling Guide

      Pederson’s Natural Farms: Holiday Food Styling Guide

      Holiday Food Styling – How to achieve the picture-perfect tablescape

      Holiday food styling guide. The holidays are the most festive time of the year, but they can also be the most stressful. Here are some useful food styling tips for getting that picture-perfect Thanksgiving and Christmas tablescape we all dream of creating.

      TABLE OF CONTENTS

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      Main course – tips for the perfect Thanksgiving and Christmas ham or turkey

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      Side dishes – complement your ham or turkey with color, angles, distance, and texture

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      Desserts life of the table, where the fun begins

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      Table lighting tips – setting the atmosphere

      food styling

      Main Course – Tips for the Perfect Thanksgiving and Christmas Ham or Turkey

      Let’s first talk about your main dish, the focal point of your meal. You will want this dish to be the most eye-catching part of your setup. Let’s say your main dish is a big delicious Pederson’s Natural Farms Christmas ham. There are many ways to style a holiday ham. The first is with traditional stylings of cloves placed on the outside of the ham – a great way to keep that traditional look. Another way is to baste your ham, whether you choose orange, cranberry, or just a brown sugar glaze. This gives a delicious spin on the ham. When presenting, you can place citrus halves or slices on a bed of parsley, kale, or green leaf lettuce. Also, fig halves, pomegranates, or cranberries all add beauty and color.
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      Garnishing your dishes adds color and character.
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      Using fruit halves, slices, and zest adds color and aroma to your Christmas Ham.
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      Baste your ham or turkey with glazes for added flavor and visual appeal.

      Side Dishes – Complement your Ham or Turkey with color, angles, distance, and texture.

      Next, let’s complement your main dish with some beautiful and creative side dishes. Sides are a great way to elevate your tablescape to the next level. It’s always best to have some fresh, vibrant vegetables in the mix for an added bit of color. Using white plates and dishes is visually striking and will achieve better photos because of the contrast. Use different shapes of dishes for each side to bring more dimension to the scape and give more depth and height, adding better visual appeal. An example to create contrast would be to use white serving pieces for dishes that are vibrant in color and darker serving pieces with lighter, more neutral foods. Don’t be afraid to change the distance of your shots. Zooming way out or getting extremely close up to your dishes can create some great eye-catching content. Changing angles is very important as well. Assess different angles of the dish and think about what would look best. Overhead shots (or flat lays) can be eye catching but not for everything. If you have something relatively flat like a crostini or flatbread, add visual interest by stacking a few, and prop one on the side of the stack. Take the photo very close and from the side or at a 45 degree angle. This adds height and texture and is more visually appealing. ​​There are times when extremely close photos of food work well, and, at other times, a wider shot conveys a better sense of place and atmosphere.
      ham food styling

      Desserts – Life of the table, where the fun begins

      Last but certainly not least, the final touch to your perfect holiday tablescape…dessert! This is where you can start being super fun and creative. There are so many different ways you can spruce up your desserts. Use elements you may not normally think of using (like fresh cranberries, leaves, or pinecones) by scattering them on the table. Don’t be afraid to try a variation of presentations to achieve that perfect image! Some clever things to try include:
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      Serving bite-sized portions
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      Using smaller glasses, bowls, or plates for individual servings
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      Garnishing with fruit, candies, nuts, edible flowers, etc.
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      Decorating with skewers, straws, and toothpicks
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      Using multicolored foods such as dark, white, and milk chocolate shavings, chips, or wafers for garnishing the tops and sides around your dishes
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      Sprinkle powdered sugar or cocoa powder on top
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      Shave some lemon, orange, or lime zest for aroma and color
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      Use seeds like chia, sunflower or fruit chunks like pomegranate arils and pineapple

      Table Lighting Tips – Setting the atmosphere

      One of the most important parts of getting the best photos possible is the lighting. Whether you are capturing a bright and cheerful mood or just a warm-night-by-the-fireplace atmosphere, these tips will help you achieve the perfect mood. Natural lighting is always the best as far as getting that perfect mouth-watering photo of your meal. Setting your table close to a large window or glass door typically provides enough natural light to take a dynamic photo. If you prefer a warmer look, take the shot at night with string lights in glass jars, taper candles strewn throughout the middle of the dishes, or tea lights placed around the scape by themselves or in decorative votive holders. If you are reluctant to use open flames, there are many LED flameless candle styles to choose from that will still help achieve a gorgeous glow.
      The possibilities are endless for creating the ideal holiday meal. I hope this brings some inspiration and creativity to you this special season!
      How To Plan For Holiday Marketing

      How To Plan For Holiday Marketing

      TABLE OF CONTENTS

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      Holiday Offer

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      Holiday Marketing Goals

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      Campaign Key Performance Indicators

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      Holiday Marketing Campaign Target Audience and Personas

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      Holiday Campaign Budget

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      Holiday Marketing Action Items

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      Get to Work On Your Marketing Plan

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      Holiday Marketing Summary

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      Final Thoughts

      How to plan for holiday marketing. – The hustle and bustle of the holidays do not come without intense preparation months in advance. Consumers save their money year-round to purchase the best decorations, food, and gifts available for their loved ones and themselves. In 2019, $729 Billion was spent during the holiday season. Whether you are advertising for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or December global holidays like Hanukkah and Christmas, or any other holiday, it all boils down to your campaign strategy. A complete campaign strategy will help your marketing team stay organized throughout the process. Your trusted Root & Roam team has put together this checklist to help you get started on your holiday campaign.

      HOLIDAY OFFER

      The first thing you need to know when preparing for the holiday season is what you want to offer to your customers. Typically, holiday campaigns include discounts and/or limited, seasonal products. When determining what to offer, you will need to consider what will make the most sense for both the consumer and for your business. For reference, you might want to look to the leaders in your niche. The leaders in your industry have likely tried many tactics to reach their audience. They know what works best. Never copy other brands’ offers or campaigns. This is simply an exercise to help you brainstorm your own ideas. Choose an offer that will bring value to your customer and your brand.

      HOLIDAY MARKETING GOALS

      Your goals are the things you want to achieve with your holiday campaign. A few examples of common goals are to generate sales, revenue, contact information (emails, phone numbers, mailing addresses), website visits, and door swings. 

      Your goals will vary depending on your brand and what you wish to achieve. Keep in mind that consumers purchasing products or services during the holiday season are likely expecting to receive their goods or services before their respective holiday. When setting goals, you will need to consider the time it takes to fulfill and ship the item or provide the service.

      CAMPAIGN KEY PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

      Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are specific measurements of success related to your goals. While key performance indicators are similar to goals, it is important to brainstorm each separately. Because there are many ways to measure performance, your team will need to know what they are looking for specifically. When creating your KPIs, keep them reasonable and attainable while challenging your brand’s capabilities. What we mean by that is to set KPIs that are not beyond your reach like selling more orders than your team is capable of getting out in a reasonable amount of time or obtaining a level of revenue that is extreme. Aiming for a 20% increase from the previous year’s Black Friday sale, for example, is a reasonable KPI. Some examples of KPIs are a specific percentage increase in sales or obtaining a specific number of email subscribers.

      HOLIDAY MARKETING CAMPAIGN TARGET AUDIENCE AND PERSONAS

      Your target audience is the group or groups of consumers you wish to reach with your marketing efforts. The persona is a visualization of your ideal customer. Having the persona is helpful in determining messaging and platforms. Each persona is determined by research. Gather the following information for each persona:

      • age
      • gender identification
      • social status
      • job status
      • source of media consumption (search platform, social media platform, television, radio, magazine, etc.)
      • parental status
      • professional status
      • relationship status

      You need to have at least one defined persona. However, multiple personas are recommended if your target consists of a range of any of the factors listed above. A few tools that you can use when creating personas are surveys, interviews with current or previous customers, and research. Feedback from your clients is valuable when trying to figure out status and media preferences. Give the persona a name and a face to aid in visualizing the persona.

      Keep in mind that consumers are typically not shopping for themselves during the holidays. Typically, your persona and target audience are the same. During the holidays, your persona represents the person that would find value in your product or service. Your target audience is the person who might purchase your product or service. Due to this, your team will need to conduct a little extra research to find where they might reach the actual buyer. Depending on what you are selling, your target audience might be grandparents, adult children, parents, friends, or spouses.

      HOLIDAY CAMPAIGN BUDGET

      The next thing you will have to determine is the budget for the entire campaign and how the projected cost meets your budget. The research will need to be conducted to determine the cost of graphics, photography, videography, models, ad spend, landing pages, social media posting and maintenance, radio ads, and/or actors depending on your chosen platforms. 

      The visual piece and labor are usually charged at a flat rate or hourly rate depending on the specifics of what you are looking for. Ad spend is a bit different. Your ad spend should reflect your goals. Ad spend is based on the cost per click or cost per conversion, depending on your goal. Obtaining a sale or a click requires your ad to be shown to anyone who relates to your set audience. Each time your ad shows, a portion of your ad budget is spent. The total amount of your budget that is spent to obtain one click or conversion is the cost per click or conversion. The higher your ad budget, the more people your ad will reach. The more your ad is shown, the higher your chance of achieving your goals. 

      Factors that might affect ad cost include but are not limited to: keyword search volume, keyword difficulty, and keyword cost. The appearance and messaging of your ad may also affect your ad spend. The Root & Roam digital marketing team is here to help you navigate ad placement and budget.

      HOLIDAY MARKETING ACTION ITEMS

      The action items are the key piece of your holiday marketing strategy. This is where you plan out each step to achieve your goals based on your KPIs, personas, and budget. Action items might include creating an ads account, researching keywords, contacting publishers or networks, and creating a social media post or graphic. If you are not sure what is involved in a specific action item, collaborate with your team. Use their input to set each deliverable and their deadlines.

      GET TO WORK ON YOUR MARKETING PLAN

      Once you have written out your campaign strategy, it is time to delegate the tasks and get to work putting your plan into action. Begin with essential pieces like script or copywriting, filming or photography, and graphic design. If you’re doing print ads, purchase your ad space. Lastly, launch your campaign and wait for the engagements, subscribers, and shoppers to roll in. Post-launch you will need to allow your marketing team time to monitor and make adjustments to your campaign as needed. Monitoring and adjusting is the most crucial piece to making your campaign successful. You want your team to correct weak points in your campaign while there is still time to recover.

      HOLIDAY MARKETING SUMMARY

      Holiday marketing is much like everyday marketing intensified. During the holidays, you are not only competing within your niche but with every other brand advertising their product or service. The overarching goal of holiday marketing is to convince consumers that your product or service will make the best gift for their loved ones and their pocketbooks.

      FINAL THOUGHTS

      As you can tell, holiday marketing can take quite a bit of time to execute. Root & Roam recommends beginning your holiday marketing plan months in advance, allowing wiggle room for unexpected events. We know that planning and executing holiday marketing can be challenging. Your Root & Roam team is here to help you through the process. Are you ready to jump-start your holiday marketing plan? Click the button below.

      Ep #01: Ryan Lofton | CEO

      Ep #01: Ryan Lofton | CEO

      We’re excited to announce a new project we’ve been working on: Off the grid with Root & Roam! Here, we’ll chat about the things we’ve been up to and what we’re excited about in the wide world of marketing. In our first episode, Rai catches up with Ryan, who just returned from the Grocery Shop conference in Las Vegas. Ryan gives a look behind the scenes, telling us what he learned, who he met, and what he’s excited about.

      We’ll be back monthly to tell you more about what’s going on behind the scenes at Root & Roam.

      What are hashtags? Why should you use them?

      What are hashtags? Why should you use them?

      When putting together your social media strategy, you should always consider the tools available to help you meet your goals. A popular tool for over a decade has been the famous hashtag. Hashtags are powerful tools that can help your target audience find you organically across all social media platforms. Hashtags are valuable for every brand in every niche when used correctly. 

      The pound symbol (originally intended to represent numbers) is now a piece of your social media marketing strategy. In 2007, Chris Messina, Product Designer, Product Therapist, and Public Speaker, came up with the idea to group tweets using the symbol. That is when the hashtag was born. Now, more than fourteen years later, social media marketers, influencers, and business owners obsess over choosing the perfect set of hashtags for every social media post. Our team at Root & Roam has created this hashtag guide to help you decipher through the thousands of hashtags in existence and choose the right ones for your brand.

      TABLE OF CONTENTS

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      What are hashtags and why you should use them

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      How to choose hashtags

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      How to use hashtags

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      Key Takeaways

      THE BASICS OF HASHTAGS

      We now know the history of hashtags, but what is a hashtag exactly? A hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by the pound symbol. They don’t contain spaces or special characters such as the asterisk or dollar symbol. Hashtags may contain numbers and or emojis. 

      (Example: #howtousehashtags, #hastagguide2021laughing)

      Hashtags are a piece of the pie that help make your social media account(s) successful. Hashtags can help you use the algorithm to your advantage by getting your content to more news feeds of current and potential followers, ultimately increasing your reach.

      How To Choose Hashtags

      Choosing the correct hashtag for your post is the key to a successful hashtag strategy. The hashtags you use should be relevant to your brand and the content of each post.

      Your social media budget also plays a part in selecting hashtags. Hashtags that already have thousands of posts are going to have a higher competition level. You will need to post multiple times per week or even per day to stay at the top of the hashtags news feed. Just like any other newsfeed, a hashtags newsfeed features the latest post first. If you are working with a small social media budget, it is best to use hashtags with lower posting rates to be competitive. However, be cautious of hashtags with low posting rates. Hashtags with less than a few hundred posts total are likely new or dead hashtags with very few followers. Using such small hashtags would not be effective for reaching your goals. 

      The process of choosing hashtags should commence when you begin creating the content for your post. Use this list as a guide of things to consider, before settling on a hashtag:

      Branding in hashtags

      You want the hashtags you choose to reflect your specific niche. For example, it does not make sense to use #shoetrends when you are trying to market massage services. Spamming hashtags is a sure way to get your account flagged. A flagged account could result in your page getting banned temporarily or permanently.

      Hashtags to help you reach your social media goals

      You will need to consider what the post is intended to do before selecting the hashtags. Ask yourself these questions:

      • Am I trying to sell a product or service?
      • Am I trying to entertain viewers with fun content?
      • Am I trying to get viewers to sign up for something?
      • What would I like to gain from this post?

      Relevant content in hashtags

      A social media post includes the caption and the visual element (photo, video, or graphic). If the post is about your latest summer coffee flavor, you might want to use a hashtag like #summercoffeeflavor to maintain relevance to the content or to be found by people searching for new summer coffee flavors.

      Holidays or Special Events Hashtags

      If the social media post is about your upcoming holiday sale, include hashtags for the specific holiday. Pay attention, as some hashtags contain a date. i.e. #christmas2010

      A rule of thumb is to begin using holiday hashtags between 60 and 90 days prior to the holiday. For larger holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year, you will want to begin using the hashtags sooner. Major holiday hashtags will be heavily used by many platform users within the month of the holiday.

      Once you have answered all of the above statements, you will begin searching for the hashtags. There are many tools available to help you search for hashtags. One that we like to use at Root & Roam is the Key Words Everywhere plugin. This tool has free and paid features. It downloads directly to your browser and gives clean instructions for set up. Once you have completed the setup, you will find the hashtag symbol in the upper right corner of your screen when you log into Instagram on your desktop or laptop computer. Click the symbol and begin researching a term or phrase to find all of the available hashtags with their statistics.

      The most straightforward method is to log in to the desired platform that you will be using the hashtags on, go to the search bar, type “#” followed by a word or phrase relevant to your post or brand. The platform will direct you to a list of hashtags related to your search. From here, you will need to search through each hashtag until you find the right one(s). Continue this process until you are satisfied with the hashtags that you have chosen. Note: some social media platforms limit the number of hashtags used in a single post. Others have character limits per post as well. Always do your research on each social media platform you choose to work with before posting any content. 

      Hashtags best practices to start with are:

      • 1 – 2 hashtags on Facebook
      • 3 – 4 hashtags on Instagram posts
      • 0 – 2 hashtags on Linkedin
      • 3 – 4 hashtags on Pinterest
      • 2 – 3 hashtags on TikTok
      • 2 hashtags on Twitter

      There are many different recommendations regarding the use of hashtags on different platforms. Ultimately it all depends on your social media goals and budget. It is always okay to push the boundaries and find what works best for your brand.

      How To Use Hashtags

      Now that you have chosen your hashtags, there are a few ways you can include them in your post. The most common method of using hashtags is to drop them at the end of the caption. Another way is to add the #hashtag in the body of your caption, as we did here. Instagram allows you to include all of your hashtags in the first comment. We recommend using this method if you are using a lot of hashtags to keep the caption reader-friendly. 

      You will want to use hashtags heavily for some social media platforms and selectively for other platforms depending on your social media budget. Hashtags, when used correctly, will put your brand in front of new viewers by targeting a specific interest relevant to your brand. This leads to new followers on your social media account and potentially new customers for your business. All without the use of paid advertising.

      Remember to continuously engage with and nurture your newly obtained audience to prevent losing them in the future. Your social media goals and objectives will continue to change over time as your brand grows. Hashtag research along with many other audience obtaining factors are a continuous revolving door. Starting your hashtag journey and maintaining it properly will serve your brand well indefinitely.

      KEY TAKEAWAYS

      A few key takeaways to remember when using hashtags:

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      Only use relevant hashtags

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      Do your hashtag research

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      When used correctly, hashtags are great tools to help you reach your target audience organically

      Are you ready to increase your organic reach on social media? Our team is here to help take your brand to the next level. Click to start using hashtags in your social media strategy.

      What is Affiliate Marketing?

      What is Affiliate Marketing?

      What is Affiliate Marketing – Affiliate marketing can be a useful tool to expose your company to potential new customers while building brand loyalty and credibility. Oftentimes, affiliate marketing is overlooked because the process can seem overwhelming to many small to midsize marketing departments. Are you interested in the affiliate marketing approach but don’t know where to start? Have no fear! Root & Roam Integrated Marketing Agency has developed a roadmap to help guide you through the process.

      AFFILIATE MARKETING STRATEGY

      The first step to launching a successful affiliate marketing campaign is to define your budget, target audience, and goals. As with nearly every marketing medium, affiliate marketing (also referred to as influencer marketing) is not free. Influencers often make their living by influencing. As such, be prepared to pay for the unique content they create on your behalf. Once you’ve decided how much you’re willing to spend, you need to define your target audience. Most likely, you’ve already completed this step in any previous marketing efforts. If you sell baby goods, your target audience will obviously include new and expecting mothers. And, finally, this first step must define your goals. Do you want to convert sales? Or, are you focused on lead generation (collecting email addresses)? Without clearly defined goals, you are not able to gauge the success of the campaign.

      Once you have these basics lined out, it’s time to create a content calendar. A content calendar is essential to keeping your campaign on track. Within your content calendar, you’ll determine what kind of content your influencers will be creating, the specific days and times you’ll want them to post, and on which platforms the content will be shared. Remember that while you are familiar with and passionate about your company, the influencers you select may be meeting your brand for the first time. It’s imperative to lay out a roadmap for them as opposed to simply trusting the influencer to have the same familiarity and passion for your brand.

      How To Choose Affiliates

      With your budget, target audience, goals, and content calendar in hand, it’s time to scout out potential influencers. You can start looking for influencers who’s audience matches yours. Find affiliates that are the “expert” in your industry. Remember the baby goods company? This company should look for influencers that are young moms whose content is heavily focused on motherhood. When you find an affiliate like that, you can rest assured they have gained popularity and credibility amongst other new and expecting moms. One key point to keep in mind is that you’re looking for quality not quantity. An influencer with a million followers but low engagement may not be as successful to your campaign as an influencer with 20,000 followers but incredibly high engagement.

      Now that you’ve selected the influencer you think best fits your brand, it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty. It’s time to talk compensation and expectations. We cannot stress enough the importance of drawing up a legal contract. This allows both you and your influencer to be on the same page in regards to both party’s obligations. Don’t forget to discuss and include licensing rights to created content in the contract!

      Watch the Affiliate Sales Pour In!

      And now for the fun part! With all the technical pieces in place, you’re ready to see your hard work in action. As your influencer begins creating content in line with the content calendar you created previously, be sure to review everything before it is published. Reviewing content before it goes live allows you to protect your brand and ensure it feels authentic to your target audience. Once the content is approved and/or revised, it’s go time!

      Be sure to share, like, and comment on the branded comment your affiliate publishes. Additionally, it’s smart to interact and engage with your audience. Posting as your company, respond to user comments in an effort to validate and personalize the experience for them. Doing so builds loyalty amongst both your potential new customers and your existing customers.

      Review, Revise and Get Ready For Your Next Influencer Campaign!

      And, finally, throughout the campaign, you’ll need to create and evaluate reports to ensure that your campaign is on track to meet those goals you set in the beginning. By checking reports frequently, you can revise and hone your campaign along the way to better align with your goals.

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      If affiliate marketing seems like a tough ball to get rolling, Root & Roam is here to help! We’ve worked with countless influencers in a variety of industries with proven success rates. Give us a call to see how Root & Roam can help grow your audience and reach your goals!