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Having a website is pointless if you don’t market it

No matter how informative or compelling your website is, if no-one knows it exists it is of no value to your business.

Think of a shop that is sited down a dark alleyway with no passing trade – no matter how wonderful its products, it will be empty if the shop owner does not publicise it.

The same principle applies to websites. Too many small business owners imagine that if they build a website, visitors will magically be attracted to it. Getting visitors  to your new website takes determination and a willingness to PUBLICISE the url. Simply hoping your site will appear on the first page of Google when someone searches for your product or service, is going to lead to bitter disappointment. You might submit your website sitemap to Google and ensure that all your pages are listed in its database, but in general, the only way to ensure visitors will come to a new website is to tell people, repeatedly, in as many ways as possible that your site is open for business!

advertise website

How to encourage visitors to your website

1. Start by thinking of OFFLINE ways you can publicise your website and encourage visitors.

Add your url prominently to all stationery you produce:

  • Business cards
  • Compliment slips
  • Letterheads
  • Leaflets
  • Brochures
  • Make a point of mentioning your website to all new customers

Advertise offline in:

  • Magazines
  • Newspapers
  • Networking groups
  • Direct marketing

2. Then employ a few simple online methods to bring visitors to your website

  • Pay-per-click advertising in the search engines.
    If you choose this route, take advice. It is possible to lose a great deal of money on PPC ads if you don’t know what you are doing.
  • Ensure your web pages are optimised for keywords to improve your chances of organic listings in the search engines
  • Social media (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.) Think about which of these best suit your business type and work hard in that area – don’t just add the same information to every social media platform.
  • Email signatures
  • Create videos for YouTube
  • Participate in online business groups

Many of these ideas take time and effort to become successful, so it is important to monitor the success of what you do. You should start by adding Google analytics to your website so you can monitor the number of visitors who do come to the site and which are the most popular pages. However, you must be patient. There is no point in trying publicity on social media, finding there has been little or no increase in the traffic to your website after a week and moving onto different types of publicity. Online advertising tends to work slowly and steadily and will have a snowball effect. The more visitors your site gets, the better its ranking will become, and the more visitors it will attract as a consequence. Patience is the key to SEO, online networking and social media.