In this article I cover some effective Internet marketing strategies. Networking and taking chances with different marketing strategies is key to owning a successful website.
So you've done it! You've poured your
heart and soul into the perfect design, the perfect concept,
THE perfect website. Don't stop there.
I have seen countless websites - perfectly good
websites sitting out there on the web, looking pretty - but
not being seen. Here are some strategies to implement - over
and over again if you want your website to be a success.
First of all, please! Provide content.
Give your visitors a reason to be there and a reason to come
back. It truly helps if your site's focus is something you are
passionate about. It is very difficult to succeed with a
website you threw together solely because you thought it might
'make you some money'. You've got to care enough about this
baby to work on it constantly - even if it ISN'T making you
money. So choose a topic that won't bore you and in which you
consider yourself a teacher. You've got to offer your visitor
something. They aren't coming to view your paid ads.
Once the site is created, make sure that you
have good Meta tags on every page. You've got to have
them. The search engine spiders feed off them. They are a
breeze to make. You can find free tools all over the place to
help you make them. I use the Meta tag creator at
http://www.anybrowser.com, mainly because I like to support
the site. They offer quality resources for free to their
users. Even if you are getting a resource for free off of the
web, you should realize that the webmaster benefits from you
using it. You become one of their statistics - one of their
visitors who find the site useful. The more useful a site is,
the more it is frequented, the higher value is placed on
advertising space. So support sites you love - go there often.
If you don't have any particular page set up as your home page
on your browser, choose a site you respect and use it as your
See, really I believe one of the secrets of
success is generosity. If you covet your resources you
close yourself off. If you fear your 'competition' instead of
embracing them and networking with them, you cut yourself off.
So take the time to support other sites and network. Network
at least once a day. Set your mind to it. If you see a site
that you love, write the webmaster. Tell them what you love
about it. There is nothing better then a note from the ethers
appreciating all that you have been working on for months. You
never know what can come out of these notes. Make suggestions.
Tell the webmaster (or webmistress) that you are interested in
reciprocal linking, but that you would really much rather go a
step further with them. That a reciprocal link really doesn't
do justice to the amount of respect you have for what they are
doing and offer to exchange articles with them, or newsletter
ads - anything. Make some friends!
Ideally you should rent Wordtracker from
http://www.wordtracker.com and research the keywords in your
meta tags before you create them. Wordtracker is a miracle!
It's very cheap to rent for a day (under $10) and it lets you
research the words you feel are key to your business and see
how many people actually search on those terms, and how many
competing sites out there are using those terms. Now that's
A word about metatags: One tag that used to be
considered crucial, the keyword metatag, is now considered
pretty much useless. Most of the search engine spiders have
stopped looking at this tag. Adding it won't hurt your site.
In fact there are a few search engines such as Tehoma that
still read it. But it definitely doesn't carry enough weight
as it used to.
Because the keyword meta tag is 'dead',
what we need to do is integrate our keywords into the Title
tag, the Description tag and probably most importantly, into
the text on the site. You can also add some keywords to the
alt tags on your sites images. But remember, your visitors
will see whatever you have written there when they mouse over
your images so keep the message brief and professional and
don't over-do it or your site will look bad.
Once you have your metatags created and inserted
into every page on your site (being sure to use a different
'title tag' for every page. Go ahead and start submitting to
search engines and directories. That's the first step. Please
note that I said FIRST step. Too many people stop there.
The next thing to do is reciprocal link.
If your site allows it, set up a directory or some form of a
reciprocal linking page. Every morning, sit down with a cup of
tea and search. Search for sites that you would like to
exchange links with. That's crucial. You don't want to add
links to YOUR site with just anyone. Their site needs to be
worthwhile. Something that you WANT to send your visitors to.
This is much more about integrity then it is about ambition.
Keep your integrity and you will have something that people
will be loyal to. Also - search for sites that will let you
add a link WITHOUT reciprocating. That is where it pays to
have a site with integrity. People will actually WANT to link
to you simply because they want to offer the resource to their
Google and other big search engines rank sites
according to (amongst other things) their link popularity. The
more you can get links to your sites out there, any where -
the better you will find that your search engine results are.
Here is a trick for finding sites to link with. Go to
http:www.google.com and do a search. Say you sell cloth
diapers. You will search on, 'add diaper link' or 'add baby
link' or 'add WAHM link', etc. You will be shocked at how many
sites come up in your search. It's fun!
Don't ever consider yourself done exchanging
links. You may set it aside for awhile, but do pick it up
again. It can never hurt.
What CAN hurt is linking to sites with a low
Google rating (below 3) from your site. I highly recommend
surfing with the Google toolbar AND the Alexa toolbar. Pay
attention to the ratings of sites that you are considering
exchanging links with. It can never hurt your search engine
results if someone links to you, but it CAN hurt your results
if you link to them. You may be willing to compromise if a
site is particularly good. Why? Because, A. you want to
support good sites and also offer excellent resources to your
visitors and B. because chances are if it is a good site - the
Google and Alexa rankings will only get better.
Another fun trick is to pay attention to your
Alexa bar as you are surfing on sites that are related to your
website. You will see that Alexa provides links to related
sites on the toolbar as you are surfing. Imagine if people
were seeing YOUR link up there! You want that! So take the
time to submit your link as you surf. If you are on a site
that relates to yours, tell Alexa about it. It only takes a
minute to submit it and a second to click the email they will
send you. The results won't be immediate - but they're 'in the
One other promotion strategy I want to share
with you is writing articles. Like this one! Write
articles on what you know about. What you care about. Or what
moves you. In just the same way as you searched for 'add
diaper link', now you will do a search for 'add article link'.
Submit your articles all over the place. Good webmasters are
often too busy to write their own articles and they LOVE to
publish good ones on their site. You heard me! They will
publish YOUR article on their site. They won't pay you. but
they will include a short biography at the end of the article
with a link back to your website. Now THAT'S what I call
payment! Free traffic that you earned! Someone read your
article, recognized that you had something to offer to them
and decided, based on the merit of what you have written that
they want to know more about you.
I promise you - if you take these pieces
of advice to heart, put them into practice and have a good
time with it. Your site WILL increase in popularity. I wish
you all the best luck with your promotion efforts and hope
that you become excited enough and savvy enough to be one of
the lucky folks who really are able to earn a living doing
what they love.
Lori Redfield is a freelancing Mother of three,
happy wife and blooming online entrepreneur. She is founder of
newly launched http://www.freelancemom.com, an esource
for women who want to work from home.
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