When it comes to gated strategies, it’s all about generating leads and new sales. And for eCommerce brands, introducing gated content to users is the golden ticket to new business. But before we let you in on these gated strategies for eCommerce stores, let’s go through the basics.
What is Gated Content?
Put simply, gated content is hidden from users and can only be accessed in exchange for their information (usually their name and email address). While ungated content like blogs and infographics is useful for search engine optimization (SEO), increasing brand awareness, and building loyalty amongst an existing customer base, gated content is more geared towards attracting prospective new customers.
How Does Gated Content Work?
Gated content is presented to users who are actively using your site. This opportunity can appear to them in the form of an in-text call to action (CTA) like, “Click here to download” or as a pop-up window that offers them access to gated content in exchange for their information. Users are usually redirected to a landing page to fill out their contact information and are then granted access to the content.
How Is Gated Content Useful to eCommerce?
Gated content and new leads go hand in hand. Here are a few reasons why your eCommerce store should consider gated strategies to boost sales.
Gated Content Incentivizes New Business
It’s as simple as this: If the gated content provided proves valuable to new leads, this increases the chances of new business and conversions. Gated content can also offer users information that will help them throughout the process of becoming a customer and making a purchase. Simultaneously, this information allows them to engage with and build an interest in your brand, products, and services.
Because the goal of gated content is to generate new leads, digital marketers purposely conceal this content from their audiences to entice and intrigue their interest. Bonus tip: The less available something is, the more an individual will want it. Gated strategies feed on this natural human response to both obtain user information and engage their interest. Because the word “gated” implies that this content is more valuable, this further entices users to relinquish their information to access and engage with it.
New Audience Reach
Another factor that is often overlooked is that gated strategies also acquire user information. This way, even if they don’t make a purchase after accessing the gated content, you now have their email address – your ticket to re-engagement. At the very least, you’re business is expanding its mailing list, allowing your brand to target new audiences.
Gated Strategies and How To Use Them
There are many different gated strategies your eCommerce store can use to generate new leads. From our team at Zero Gravity Marketing, here are a few gated strategies that are sure to bring in new sales!
Offering users access to “refreshed” information – on a blog they’ve previously read, for example – is a great way to entice users to this gated content. Updated content should expand on information that is already present on your site’s pages or blog posts, offering new details or bonus tips. Another idea is to create an updated version of an older blog post.
You should embed links to upgraded content within the existing post or page, as opposed to presenting this new content to readers in pop-ups, so the incentive is less disruptive to the users. The more elite or niche you make this upgraded content seem, the more a user will be engaged to explore it in exchange for their personal information.
eBooks or Whitepapers
Another useful gated strategy is to present users with the opportunity to access a gated eBook or whitepaper. Both of these can offer visitors specific information about your brand, products, or services. Interested potential customers would not want to waste an opportunity to become more well-versed in the details prior to making a purchase, so these are a great way to entice users to exchange their information for access.
If your eBook is interactive, this is an even better incentive, as it adds more value to the customers in terms of their ability to gather information and their user experience.
Since the start of the pandemic, webinars have become all the rage. They are a super useful way to present your customers with more information about your brand, demonstrate product demos, and directly answer questions from your audience.
Using webinars as a gated strategy is a great way to offer them more information through a live and engaging online event. Because webinars can provide customers with valuable information directly from your brand’s team members, this is an opportunity an interested buyer would not want to miss (especially if it’s free!). So offer something valuable in these webinars (how-tos, open forum discussions, demonstrations, etc.).
Video Content or Podcasts
Short videos and podcasts can be extremely useful pieces of gated content. Whether they’re pre-recorded webinars, YouTube clips, product demos, or how-tos for user tips, they add value and give the user an audio/visual component to their education. Reserve this content for your gated strategies to really engage with new leads for your brand.
Gated Content and the Customer Journey
One thing to consider when presenting gated content to users is the customer journey. Aligning your gated content with the stages of a purchasing process (awareness, consideration, and decision) is a great way to ensure your content really speaks to and assists each individual customer. For example, new leads who are in the beginning stages may be seeking broader information, in which an eBook could be useful. However, potential customers in the later stages may be in need of content that is more niche or product-specific, like product demos.
Use the customer journey as a guide when you are presenting this offer to users so you can get the most out of your gated content and see the best results.
Sometimes your gated content offer needs a little extra boost. While offering something that is limited can stand on its own in terms of engaging customers, strong CTAs are an added bonus. Use your CTAs to really hook and attract both the attention and interest of users.
A less obvious incentive is the value of this content. Your gated content needs to provide potential customers with an added value experience, be useful to their purchasing process, and be relevant to both their interests and needs. Make this clear in your offer.
Consider Your Landing Page
Your gated content should exist within an engaging landing page to maximize returns. When new leads are redirected from your initial offer to the sign-up page, it’s important that they are greeted by strong, attractive headlines and copy. The landing page for your gated content needs to grab and hold the attention of users as the final push.
If you choose to present your gated offer to users through a pop-up window or registration page, you can generate even more urgency amongst these new leads by making the window time-sensitive. Consider giving users 24-hours to sign up and access the gated content. Remember, the more limited it is, the more it will be desired.
The Final Touch: ZGM
At Zero Gravity Marketing, we know the ins and outs of digital marketing, which is why our team is the best in the business! If your marketing strategies need a boost, contact ZGM today.