By the time you read this, you should hopefully already be aware that the key to success with a web site is relevant traffic. No company, on-line or otherwise can have any revenue unless people looking for your goods and services actually visit your business. To make money, on the Internet your site has to be promoted so people know where to find you amongst the one billion other web sites on the net.
Being found on the web does not mean you have to launch an expensive ad campaign, or send out millions of catalogues or flyers. That’s the great advantage of the Internet over all other places to locate a business – it’s relatively inexpensive to let people know a site is open and where to find it. It’s inexpensive in terms of dollars. If you know what you are doing, you can do it for nothing. In terms of time however, it can be expensive. You should be spending 20 to 30 hours every month working on search engine placement, plus another fifteen hours or so on the items below. Here are some of the best ways to promote your site outside of search engine placement:
- Newsletter style mailing lists: If you collect Email addresses from everyone who makes an inquiry, purchase, or subscribes to your newsletter, you’ll quickly have a mailing list. Use it once in a while to let people know of any new developments on your site. If you stay in people’s minds, you’ll probably get their repeat business, and they might even recommend your site to their friends. Also remember to put an unsubscribe option into every Email.People who don’t want your information can let you know and you will be less likely to offend someone.
- Newsgroup Postings: There are tens of thousands of newsgoups out there operating as bulletin board services on specific subjects. Anyone who visits the group is welcome to read the posted messages and also post new ones, or respond to existing ones. Each newsgroup or board, focuses on a specific subject, such as alt.music.beatles: discusses everything from songs to news about the various members of The Beatles. There are bound to be a number of groups which relate to the content of your site. These are prime areas to promote yourself. Two cautions exist however: Most of these areas are non-commercial; Don’t just post random commercials for yourself. Many newsgroup readers hate commercial advertisements, so be smooth, focus on the few groups where your product relates.
Read the other messages in there to get feeling for the group before posting. Often you can be more effective by answering other people’s posts rather than just blindly posting messages about yourself.
If you decide to follow these approaches you will find added success beyond search engine placement alone.
P.S. An Email signature which contains your web site address is the quickest and easiest promotion you can do. If it’s not there already, immediately add one to all your email.