Marketing Tips & Ideas

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Marketing Your Website

After you spend all the time and money building a website, it is critical to market your website at every possible opportunity. You want to drive traffic to your site and then you want visitors to keep coming back for more.

Drive traffic to your site
First, determine how potential visitors might find your site. Visitors can reach your site from a variety of avenues such as:
  • Links in your emails or email signatures
  • Your business cards, marketing, and advertising materials that list your website address
  • References to your website in an offline publication such as a trade journal, newspaper, or newsletter
  • References to your website in a forum or online discussion group
  • References to your website from any online social networking website such as or
  • Pre-existing knowledge of your business, organization, or website
  • Using keywords that are relevant to your website, services, or name of your organization via search engines like Google or Yahoo
Now, you should consider ways to make it EASY for potential visitors to find your site. You can do things online and offline to accomplish this.

Offline Marketing
  • Make sure that EVERY single piece of print and marketing material you generate features your website address in an easy-to-find location and easy-to-read font. This includes your letterhead, business cards, newsletters, faxes, and all advertising material. If you are already spending money on printing advertising and marketing materials, make sure they do double duty and advertise your website. People might throw away that postcard or flyer, but they might remember that you had a website and will look for you online to get information like store hours or product or service information.
  • If you do a printed newsletter, make sure to mention new features or new events from your website in your newsletter. You can also expand on topics in your newsletter by providing additional information on your website that visitors can view. Use lines like "Visit our website to find more easy Holiday recipes."
  • Make sure that every staff member or volunteer in your organization knows EXACTLY what your website address is. If anyone contacts your company or organization, every staff member must be ready to share the company website address for visitors to find further information.
  • Always make sure to include your website address in any press releases and publications. If your company or organization is interviewed or featured, ask to include your website URL.
Online Marketing
  • Always make sure to include your website address in your email signature so that anyone with whom you correspond online can easily find and access your site.
  • Optimize your website for search engines. Making sure to mention the name of your organization several times in different places around your site. Make sure your copy or TEXT also includes keywords or phrases that are relevant to your industry, product, or services. Use tags on your photos to reinforce those same keywords. This increases the chance that search engines like Google can find you and thus people searching for similar phrases and services can find you.
  • Participate in relevant online discussion groups and don't forget to mention your website. If you are an expert in your field or knowledgeable about your products and services, you can provide advice and information to others in the online community. Don't forget to mention your website!
  • Always monitor your website traffic and analyze the data to determine how many people are visiting your site, what keywords they use to find your site, which pages they view when visiting, and how long they stay on your site. This is all valuable information that will help you test and modify different features and marketing campaigns on your site to find the best and most effective online tools to meet your online goals. These goals can include how to get a visitor to make a purchase, provide a donation, or submit an email address. I recommend using Google Analytics, but there are other systems out there.

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Thursday, May 1, 2008

What does Conversion Mean?

New to the world of online advertising and ecommerce? An important word to learn is conversion. By understanding what conversion is, you can assess your online campaigns more accurately.

When a visitor comes to your website, you may have different objectives than the next site. Maybe your goal is to get someone to donate something, fill out a form, sign up for a newsletter, or buy your product. That precious click that submits that information or complete that sale is the moment your visitor converts from browsing your site to completing your preset goal!

To improve your site's conversion goals, it's important to TEST! Watch the traffic on your site to determine a baseline for your site's traffic. Then set up A/B tests that test one new change at a time for a specified period of time.

Watch your traffic and sales or email signups or whatever conversion you are testing to see if B variable makes a difference. Carefully testing your site to your new and existing customer base allows you to see what your visitors really want to see in order to convince them to follow through. This could mean anything from bigger or smaller product photos, free shipping, or detailed product information.

The only way you'll know for your site is to test. And then test some more! Makes your site more effective and improve YOUR bottomline.

Read an article on Old Navy's ecommerce changes
designed to enhance their conversion AND their bottom line.

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