Have you recently had a new website go live? If so, now is not the time to sit back and relax. Just putting your site live and not promoting is a sure way for it to get lost in the crowded world on the internet. But there are many ways of advertising your site and having a quality site for them to visit. Here are several ways to help promote your site as well as some tips on upkeep and monitoring. (These are just quick tips, if you’re looking for more in depth information on any of these, visit our website or contact us.)
Driving traffic to your site
There are several basic ways of getting visitors to your new site. The first is through the search engines. Having a high ranking is the name of the game here. Generally, people searching for something will click on one of the top listings that come up. Getting your site highly ranked in the search engines takes time and can be an investment, but it is worth it in the long run! Search Engine Optimization involves targeting specific keywords that you would like to be found on the search engines. Since there is no single cookie cutter approach it’s best to contact someone who can come up with a specific plan for your site.
Advertising your business through traditional means (print, radio and TV) has been around a long time and there is a good reason for it, because it works! Internet advertising is the new “kid on the block” but it has one huge benefit: your ad is up 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for anyone to see, when they are avidly looking for something! Compare that to a TV, radio commercial or print ad. Plus, its highly trackable. You can get stats from how many people clicked to how many impressions your ad got. I will use our regional city guides such as Saratoga.com and Albany.com as examples because that’s what I have the most knowledge about, but there are tons of other sites that are similar. Buying an ad or listing on one of these sites can be a smart choice. Our sites get a large amount of traffic and being on a site like this can be great exposure. The biggest key is they do the search engine optimization work for you. Saratoga.com for instance has articles, news, blogs for both tourists and locals which all help get its high ranking.
Pay Per Click Advertising. These are those simple text ads you see on search engine results pages. The ads shown are shown because they are related to the search term being used by the internet user. So if you are an apple pie maker, you may want to have an ad showing up when people type in ‘apple pies,’ ‘apply pie ingredients’ or ‘apple desserts.’ The great thing is that you pay only when a user clicks on your ad – hence the name “pay per click.” One great benefit is you can set your budget per day from anywhere from a few dollars a day to sky’s the limit. All the major search engines offer a PPC solution for your business.
Want to get the word out on your new site to your existing customers? Have some other news you want to share with your customers? Well, one of the easiest and most inexpensive ways to reach them is an Email Newsletter. They require no stamps, no trips to the post office and no printing. You just need to create an HTML file with news, specials, discounts or any other information you want to send to your customers. To do an email Newsletter you will need an existing email list of recipients who signed up with the intention of receiving emails. If you don’t have a list yet, start one today and before you know it you’ll have cultivated a qualified list of leads you can contact on a regular basis.
If you think maintaining a list and executing an email campaign is a daunting task, don’t worry. There are many great all in one solutions that you can email from as well as maintain your email lists. These services also offer stats on how many opened the email, how many clicked, etc. Cost generally runs around $20 per 1000 emails for sending a Newsletter. Compare that to sending something through the snail-mail.
Here are some popular companies for Email Newsletters:
When your site is setup, most companies provide statistical tracking on your site. Website owners should check their stats regularly (no less than once a month) and see what pages users are visiting or what pages people are leaving on. These stats can give you clues on what pages you need to work on since things are always changing. Are users leaving halfway through a signup process? Perhaps there are too many questions, or they are asking more information than people are comfortable with giving away. If you notice low overall traffic, are you getting your website and business name out there enough? If not, it may be time to try some of the above ideas.
Standing out in the crowded field on the internet can be tough but by pursuing some of this suggestions, you can make your website successful and profitable.