Your masterpiece web site is now online, the content is killer, the design is superb, its been optimised for search engines and it’s the best on the Internet. You are prepared for a tidal wave of hungry visitors. But it’s not that easy.
Everybody wants to promote his or her web site. Nobody wants to spend much money doing it. Here are 10 tips to help bring visitors to your site.
“Let us submit your site to 100,000 search engines for only …. ” You’ve seen it before and possibly you’ve been tempted but why is this a really bad deal? For starters, there aren’t 100,000, or even 100, sites that are worth submitting to. The top 20 Search Engine sites serve about 98% of all internet searches – Google has over 90% on its own while most of the so-called search engines get practically zero! Be warned – if you go ahead with one of these services, be prepared to be inundated with junk emails for everything from get-rich-quick schemes and timeshare offers to porn site invitations.
If you have opted for Red Rhino to carry out the Search Engine Optimisation & Management of your web site, you don’t need to do anything with regards to search engine promotion, as we look after all of this for you.
Build it and they will come!
No they won’t. It’s amazing how many companies spend good money to build a web site, then balk at the cost of letting people know it exists. Your web site address should be on every piece of company media from letterheads to coffee cups, invoices to fax cover sheets, press advertising to telephone book inserts – a mention on any piece of media material will increase the amount of exposure your site gets.
We’ve even seen web addresses written on car number plates. Usually whatever you see written on the number plate is boring. Occasionally, it entertains you. Either way, it’s got your attention.
Add an email signature
All email packages allow you to set up a signature to add to the bottom of your email messages. Include your web site address, a short description, phone number and address, if relevant. Click-through rates from email signatures can be astonishingly high. These powerful little messages can make the difference between communicating with prospects and just sending out a bland email.
Let your contacts know what you do and how they can see it. Here’s an example:
t: 028 3887 9909
Look in your email program. Find the button to set up a signature file. Do it today.
The ‘wrong’ email address
Use only email addresses that are part of your site’s domain. Don’t use email address that include the name of your internet service provider or email provider, like email@example.com. It doesn’t look professional and you are only advertising for them. Also, your contacts won’t be able to email you at that address if you ever stop using it. Messages can still be forwarded to any other address using your ‘normal’ email alias without the sender ever knowing, but make sure your official addresses is ‘@yourcompany.com’. If you haven’t already done so, change your default email address in your email program without delay.
Request links on industry and trade related sites. You may belong to various trade associations that feature member sites. Ask for a link. Even if you have to pay something for a link on a busy site, it may bring you the kind of targeted traffic you crave. Watch out, though, that if you include a link on your site to some other site that you aren’t inviting site visitors to prematurely leave!
Keep them informed!
It’s very important that you have a newsletter or mailing list. Newsletters work wonders for sites that use them well. Give an incentive and a reason for someone to join your newsletter. People are not willing to just hand over their email address with no idea what they will be getting in return. The newsletter should always carry relevant, useful content and not just blatant advertising. As long as it is useful, people will appreciate it and pass it on to several friends. Again, remember to actively ask them to pass it on. If you don’t ask them to pass it on, even if they are willing to do so, they may just forget or not even think about it.
Do not send spam!
While sending newsletter mailing lists in very important, sending out spam emails could be the death of your business online. Sending out mass, unsolicited email is not acceptable, anywhere, for any reason. Only send marketing emails to users who have opted-in to obtain emails from you. There are hundreds of companies out there trying to sell you databases that you can use to send out mass emails but don’t believe their promises. Spamming is a sure-fire way to lose friends and make enemies. It can also end up with your web site barred and emails blocked, crippling your business.
Web Visitor Statistics
A wise man said, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” Be sure to keep your web statistics access private, analyse them and act on what they say. These reports can really help you boost your traffic by telling you how many visits are coming from each search engine, where other visitors are coming from and what keywords people are searching on to reach your site.
Blogs, Social Networking and Forums
The popularity of discussion forums, blogs and social networking sites has increased dramatically over the last few years. These social media resources present every web site owner with excellent opportunities to positively contribute to that online community while at the same time increasing their own profile. Irrespective of what your site sells or promotes, there are blogs, forums or networking sites out there in the same subject area where you can offer an expert’s view to build credibility. Once you’ve got credibility to your name, more people will visit your web site. A word of warning though – do not jump in and brazenly announce yourself or your wares as the saviour to everyone’s needs – blatant self promotion is frowned upon and you will be rejected immediately. Build it slowly and build it solidly.
Keep it fresh!
The major search engines (especially Google) not only rank pages upon relevant content but they love fresh content as well. To get to the top of the search engines and stay there, your site should not only be optimised (it is professionally search engine optimised, isn’t it?) but it should also deliver fresh, relevant content on a regular basis. Imagine you owned a book shop and you never sold the latest bestsellers. Of course, some people might want to come by once in a while to check out your old books but eventually your shop traffic would dry up. The same goes for your website. You need to constantly feed your site with fresh content or your visitors, and eventually your business, could dry up.
Once the promotional process is started don’t stop – keep up the good work. Repeated exposure of web site’s address will keep traffic flowing to your site. Do not expect traffic to jump immediately. Remember, if no one knows where you live, no one will come and see you!
We would be delighted to hear from you if you think we could help promote your site.