Don’t Stop at SEO
Hands-down, I think the most common request I get when either building someone a new site or updating an old one is to make sure the site is Search Engine Optimized (SEO). It can’t be denied – Search Engine Optimization is important. So important, in fact, that Purple Pen Productions includes Search Engine Optimization in every project that we do.
But, Search Engine Optimization isn’t everything you can do to promote your site. SEO is just the beginning. Don’t spend a bunch of money and time on building a SEO site only to let it lie unused without much traffic. Here are some other important strategies for promoting your site and getting traffic.
People are relying on the internet more and more to help them find local businesses – restaurants, hair stylists, pet sitters, etc. Make sure you’re easy to find. Both Google and Yahoo offer easy ways to list your business on their maps so that customers searching your neighborhood for your business will find you.
Chances are, you’ve got a number of public profiles with social networking sites – Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. Make sure your web site is mentioned in all of your public profiles. Make it easy to get to your site when someone finds you online.
Participate in the Community
No matter what topic you’re interested in or what business you’re in, I can practically guarantee that there’s a thriving blog community around it. Use blog search tools like Google Blog Search to find blogs in your area of interest. Head over and read the articles posted. When appropriate, leave professional, respectful comments. Comments left on other blogs can nearly always be set up to link back to your own site. If the other faithful readers like what you have to say, you can be sure they’ll follow your link and check out your site. The bonus is that you already know they’re interested in the topic.
You can also participate by having a professional blog of your own, either as your business web site, or as a part of your business web site. If you’re not much of a writer yourself, you can hire either a copywriter to write your articles for you, or you can hire a copy editor to take your notes and rough drafts and turn them into polished articles.
Just because we’re in the midst of a web revolution, don’t discount traditional media. If you do any kind of advertising – television commercials, radio spots, newspaper or magazine ads, etc. – be sure that you’re always mentioning your web site address. People who want a little more information will have an easy way to find out more about you without being worried about being intimidated by a sales pitch. Also, make sure that anything you print for your business, from business cards to catalogs and brochures, has your web address printed on it.
No matter how you handle your email, there’s a way to program a signature automatically to the bottom of your emails. For your professional email, make sure this includes all the relevant contact information for your business along with, you guessed it, your web address.
Many businesses create a free email newsletter for their customers and potential customers. To encourage people to sign up, ask them to sign up in person when they visit your business or make a free online offer for those that sign up from your web site. Be clear about what people can expect when they sign up – will you email updates, new product information, coupons and deals? How often?
Once you’ve built an email list to send your newsletter to, be respectful. If you said you’d send out newsletters once a month, don’t start sending daily emails. Don’t add people to your list without their permission.
In Conclusion – Don’t Stop at SEO
No one can deny that Search Engine Optimization is important, but don’t forget that it’s not the be-all and end-all of driving traffic to your site and getting new customers. SEO-only strategies fall short because they market only to the people who are already looking for you. Of course it’s important that those customers find you, but it’s even more important to get your message out to the customers who don’t even know you exist yet. Look for new opportunities to promote your site and business – you’ll find them nearly everywhere you look.
My Notes about Don’t Stop at SEO:
The truth is not only “Don’t stop at SEO”, but don’t stop any of your marketing campaigns. If you put all your eggs in one basket, you might find yourself with no eggs.
Part of me, the SEO side of me wanted to make a point. It’s is now 2:38 January 24, 2012 and I thought this article should be seen by the masses. But as I read through the article, it wasn’t optimized to found by search engines. Why would anybody want to go through all the time to build a website, write content, pay for web hosting and not be found? But this happens all the time. Search Engine Optimization should be a key factor in your business strategy. If you don’t optimize your site, nobody will ever find you…
Don’t Stop at SEO
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