So you have a great website designed by a pro like Small Biz Media (see post). The graphics are meaningful, photography is excellent, and functionality has been tested and is working perfectly. The website released recently but you haven’t had nearly the web traffic that you expected. Where is everybody?
There are a lot of resources and opinions on this matter of how to get visitors to your web site and keep them coming back. Keeping it simple is a mantra that Small Biz Media uses and advises on a consistent basis so I’ll take my own advice and distill some basic information into to a few points that you can use right away.
- Content first
- Search engine optimization is important for driving web traffic. Is it the most important thing? No way. Content is king. If your site doesn’t have high quality content that is frequently refreshed your repeat web traffic, the lifeblood of any site, will be non-existent. Analytics, SEO, marketing your business and URL, being mobile friendly and more are all important but don’t lose focus. In the end the only reason for anyone to come to your site is content. If you don’t have the time, talent or resources to have terrific content then contract with someone who can do the job for you. Otherwise, you are wasting time. In case you missed it and would like some detail on the subject, I wrote a piece on crafting good content as part of a bigger series on web design.
“In the end the only reason for anyone to come to your site is content”
- Put your URL on everything
- Your URL should be prominently displayed on all printed material including business cards, tri-fold brochures, pamphlets, letterhead… everything. The cost to make sure this is done is relatively low and is a great way to drive web traffic. And while it does not strictly fall into the printed materials class, I would recommend the same thing for your print advertisement, TV or radio spots, signage, banners, and on company vehicles as well. If it is company related, your URL should be clearly displayed.
- A simple no-cost item that is often overlooked is including your URL in your email signature block. It probably works best as the last line after name, phone numbers and anything else you include.
- Giving the people that have already spent money with you first dibs, or an extra special offer is good business in general and a good way to drive web traffic. So, pointing current customers to your website in an email campaign is good for you and your customers.
- Be social
- Using social media to drive web traffic is okay. Using social media to market your small business… not so much. Read on.
- Social media sites like Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, LinkedIn, and Twitter are all tools available to you that can help to drive web traffic.
- Small Biz Media, and other marketers, are not advocates of social media as a marketing tool per se. This opinion puts us squarely in the minority. However, we will not advise our clients to invest hundreds per month on social media marketing because we do not feel most small businesses will ever see a profit from it.
- On a related social media item, you do want to offer your visitors the chance share your content on social media. It is common to see that “share” button on many sites, including Small Biz Media. Do they exist on your website?
- Expertise sells
- Are you really good at what you do? Perhaps you are an expert with certifications, awards and/or recognitions within your field. Does everyone know that? Sharing your experience and expertise through blogs and articles will drive first time and repeat web traffic. How? Properly constructed text for blogs and articles will get “hits” from search engines for that first timer looking for information on a topic. Establishing credibility in your field gives visitors a reason to bookmark your site and come back again and again to a source they trust. A blog or article series is also a great way to keep fresh content on your site and we know how important that is.
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- No web traffic discussion would be complete without talking about SEO. However, search engine optimization is a discipline in itself and deserves an article, a series really, of its own. So for now, I’ll just say you should have a firm grasp on your SEO efforts and how they are performing. That means either becoming familiar with those mechanics yourself or contract it to a professional. Ignoring SEO then complaining about the fact that all the effort and money you put into the website isn’t producing web traffic makes no sense.
There is so much more to successful website marketing and driving web traffic but I hope this gives you some real action items to follow up on. I’ll dive into the detail, especially SEO, in more focused articles in the near future. As always, Small Biz Media stands ready to partner with you on getting the most out of your website and web marketing efforts. We can help with targeted efforts like an email campaign as well as more general concerns. Contact us today for details.