Here’s a typical small business complaint
“My web site isn’t working! No one is visiting and I’m not getting any new clients. What’s the best way for me to get found on the Internet; should I buy GoogleAds; start a blog?”
Maybe a blog is a good idea for your business and Google can help too – but first, consider this:
Just about every professional we meet is under the mistaken belief that all you need is a great looking website. Not only that, many are in some stage of “re-doing” their websites, usually at great expense and with long delays.
Unfortunately, the revised website alone rarely brings better results. The secret is to get people to the site. And relying solely upon Google for this isn’t enough since Google’s contribution to site traffic is typically just 5-15%, not the 50% everyone assumes. However expertly optimising your site (SEO) can certainly help a lot, especially as more and more people type website addresses directly into Googles search box.
Unfortunately very few web designers here know enough about SEO. The techniques taught at most local web design schools today are outdated and often damaging.
Keep site content interesting, relevant and updated
Another major factor is that Google ‘likes’ sites that have regularly updated, relevant content. If your site provides no easy way for you to update content each week or month, then you’ll quickly disappear off the Google search result. And it’s not just Google that will start to ignore you, your regular clients will too!
Setting up a simple, low cost business blog helps, since these sites encourage you to change content. Microsoft provides an amazing free tool call Windows LiveWriter that makes updating a blogsite a breeze. Click here for a video tutorial on Live Writer.
And much to the horror of professional web designers, these simple, cheap blogs quite often get a far higher search result, in less time, than your fancy [expensive] corporate website. This isn’t necessarily bad though. Just ensure you have links between your main and blog sites, since the cheap blogsite will help boost traffic to your main corporate site!
The other little-known benefit in having a blog style website, is that these simple sites are technically much easier (and cheaper) to make mobile-compatible. i.e. Better for those that visit your site using their mobile phone browser. This is important, especially if you sell products in the 15-25yr old marketplace when iPhones and mp3-compatible Nokias are the rage.
Friends in high places
Having connections in bigger companies helps too. i.e. If you’re part of, or have an agency from a major brand, ensure you get a link from their site to yours. Likely their website has good traffic and a high google ranking. This alone not only helps your traffic, but your own ranking and website grading.
Use offline channels to drive traffic to you site
Another simple strategy to get site traffic is to send out monthly e-newsletters. Most find site traffic (and sales) always peak following an e-letter mailing. And if you’ve a limited email database, the best way to get this is from your regular clients is often by a simple [printed] direct mailer, specifically designed to send them to your website to signup.
If you’re doing magazine or newspaper advertising, ensure your website address is prominent, specifically giving a website link that ties in with the advertised promotion. If radio advertising works in your market, ensure you mention your website address. People are simply more likely to remember this than your phone number or address!
So, getting good Website traffic boils down to having several online and offline strategies working together. When these tools are put in place, they form a smooth, automated way to get your core message out to the people you care about.
Don’t forget the WOW factor
In any communication vehicle to get people to your website, don’t forget the Rafi Factor. Keep it relevant, interesting and well targeted. If you don’t it will just be another junk item destined for the bin, not helping your sales or credibility.
Hint: Want to instantly know how good (or bad) your website is from a Google SEO and marketing potential perspective? Go to www.websitegrader.com