THE ABC's OF WEB SITE PROMOTIONWritten by Stephanie D. Buelt
What can you do to stimulate traffic to your web site? You can find thousands of articles on web site promotion on internet, but I have summarized a list of items to consider:
>>>Submit Page to Search Engines The most important search engines that robotically "spider" or index your site are: AltaVista, Excite, HotBot, Lycos, Infoseek, WebCrawler, and Northern Light.
>>>Submit to Yahoo Yahoo is most important listing of all -- though it is technically a directory, rather than a search engine. But be very careful, and follow their instructions.
>>>Submit Page to Other Directories These do not help much, except to increase perceived "popularity" of your site by major search engines.
>>>Include URL on Stationery, Cards, and Literature Make sure cards, stationary, brochures, and literature contain your company's URL.
>>>Promote using traditional media Do not discontinue print advertising you have found effective, but be sure to include your URL in ads you purchase. Catch readers' attention with ad, and then refer them to a Web page where they can obtain more information or perhaps place an order. Consider other traditional media to drive people to your site, such as direct mail, classifieds, post cards, etc.
>>>Develop a Free Service This can be very rewarding in increased traffic to your site. Make sure that your free service is closely related to what you are selling so visitors you attract will be good prospects for your business.
>>>Request Reciprocal Links Find complementary web sites and request a reciprocal link to your. Build a separate page where you put links to other sites so that you do not send people out back door as fast as you bring them in front door.
>>>Request Links from Business Link Sites Especially if you offer a free service, you can request links from many of small business linking pages on Web. E-mail site owner or webmaster with your site name, URL, and a brief 200-word description of what you offer there.
Your Total, Effective Online Marketing PlanWritten by David Gikandi
Everyone is looking for that magic formula that will propel his or her web site to phenomenal success. Sooner or later, most people give up their search for this mythical online marketing secret and accept a mediocre level of online business performance that they know deep in their hearts is not what it should be. But a few people discover secret. As you now will.
The secret is that there is no super-duper secret method of marketing that will get you all success you dreamt of. But there is a formula which when done in totality, without taking any shortcuts, will multiply your online business success many times over whatever it is now. The ingredients of that formula consist of very basic and low-cost tasks that I am sure you have heard of before but ignored or applied partially, as most people do. The 'secret' is that you have to apply all methods correctly and in totality. And you should spend 80% of your daily work time doing this (or get someone to spend 80% of their time doing this for you). This article might disappoint you initially because it pretty much talks about what you have heard before, but please read through it and you will be glad you did. It shows you right way to use that 'old' knowledge for great results. These results may not instantaneously come crashing through in a few short days, but they will solidly build over a few weeks and months to create a large stable and permanent success base.
Before we look at methods, let us briefly take a look at some items or tools you need to gather for use. You need a collection of:
1. Signature files - these are simple text files, electronic equivalent of your business card and should be no longer than 8 lines long. They carry your contact details and a quick intro to your business. Make a few different ones and append one at end of your outgoing emails and postings. You can also use them to track source of inquiries resulting from your postings and emails. 2. Blurbs - short one-paragraph text pieces about your business or related topic that you can post or paste to emails when required. 3. Reports - these are longer version of blurbs, detailing your business or any other related topic. Post these to selected places on Internet and provide them whenever required. 4. Newsletters - for a wide variety of reasons, it is very important that you start your own newsletter and work at getting subscriptions. There is a lot of information on internet about how you can start, grow and manage a newsletter so I wont get into it. The only idea I would like to give you is this: actively ask your current subscribers to forward your newsletter to their friends. Offer a free gift that has true value to those who forward newsletter to 20 friends. That will get you amazing growth in newsletter subscriptions and sales! You can start one free at www.listbot.com. 5. Banners - make sure you have professional quality banners of different sizes. My favorite place to get custom professional banners at an affordable price is www.buyabanner.com. 6. Press Releases - create professional press releases for everything about your web site, from new product announcements to site changes. Post them in appropriate places on Internet and to press release services. 7. FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions files. Create a few of these about your industry or any other related topic. Make them in a question-and-answer format and post them in appropriate newsgroups and email them when necessary. They should not be blatant advertising of your products but they should have your signature file at bottom and maybe a 'Created By...' line at top to get you recognition. A well done FAQ can find itself copied all over web and referred to by thousands! 8. Autoresponders - if appropriate for your business, it can be a great idea to get a powerful autoresponder that will be able to read incoming email and automatically and instantly send out information files and answers that are appropriate to query. That way you can manage thousands of email inquiries on time without any effort. Find one at www.web-source.net/links/. 9. Articles - write a few good articles every so often that are related to your industry. Contribute these for free publication in various ezines and web sites (make a list of a few hundred sites and newsletters that can take your article). This is one of most effective tools in your arsenal as it reaches thousands at one go, grabbing their attention for extended periods of time. The article should not be blatantly marketing your business, but at end of it you should have your signature.
Now let us look at methods that build success. Basically it works this way: apply above tools to each of these methods frequently, daily where possible. It's that simple, but remember key point here - frequently, all methods, daily where possible. All statistics below are taken from GVU WWW User Survey of October 1998 (http://www.gvu.gatech.edu/user_surveys/).
Incoming links 88.3% of people find new sites through links on other sites. The smart way to approach this is to start a good affiliate program that pays a commission to people linking to your site for sales, leads or clicks. I highly recommend that you get any of these three affiliate program management companies to run yours: LinkShare.com, BeFree.com or CommissionJunction.com. These are leading ones, with Link Share being biggest and most well known and CJ being most affordable but significantly smaller. The advantage of going with Link Share, for example, is that your total affiliate program will be run by them including check writing and reporting. You will get immediate exposure to over 1 million affiliates who use them, many of them immediately starting to promote you, and people will believe in your affiliate program because of reputation Link Share carries. So with your affiliate program in place you can now contact webmasters and site owners of heavily trafficked sites in your industry - resource sites, sites selling complimentary products, directories, newsletters, clients, even competitors - you would be surprised at what you can get! Offer them a special affiliate commission package (with Link Share you can customize your commission rates). Give them banners and promotional text. Maybe even offer a small discount to their clients - that will help them promote your products. Make a contact list of as many sites as you can daily and contact them and follow them up until you get deal done. Start with a few hundred. All they would have to do is recommend your products or site to their customer base by placing your links, banners and reviews on their site and newsletter or mailing list. It is a very easy job for them, but one that will earn them a guaranteed commission of 10 - 20% through an affiliate program that they can trust. Considering that some sites have mailing or customer lists in tens or hundreds of thousands, plus online visitors, this will work very well. Again, use your tools here to maximum effect.