5 Steps for Creating an Easy-To-Market Website
by Steve Shaw | June 26, 2011
So you've just created a website and you're not sure what to do next. You've heard the 'build it and they will come' approach may not be too effective. But what can you do to make your website easy to market and start attracting traffic?
Perhaps the following rings a bell. This is how it often goes ...
You have a business or you want to have a business. You have heard or logically figured out that one of the first steps is to get a website for this business. Without a website, you're practically invisible nowadays, right? So, you either pay someone to set it up or you figure out how to do it yourself. Then, you look at your website a few hundred times a day.
Why? Because you are so impressed with your professional looking web presence! (And you're even more impressed with yourself that the term "web presence" is now a part of your vocabulary.) Then you figure out how to check your website "stats" to see how many people are looking at your website. You are thrilled that you have had 300 hits today. Even better when you consider the site has only just gone live. This traffic thing you've heard about is easy! Then you remember you have looked at your website yourself about 300 times today. So the only traffic you are receiving is essentially from ... err, umm ... well, yourself. Not good. So you start to think, "How can I get people to look at my website?" Or if you're really smart, "How can I get people who might buy my product to visit my website?"
That's where this article comes in. I want to reveal a few things you might not know already that will help you market your website.
1. Your first order of business is to do keyword research for your niche.
DO NOT skip this step. I know how it is when you're first starting. You just want to get going and skip over the things that may be confusing. But you will save yourself a lot of time and effort if you do keyword research before anything else.
As with most things, it will get easier with practice. It is also a very valuable skill to learn and add to your arsenal.
To put it briefly, keyword research should be the foundation of starting to market your website. Not sure how? While there's not enough space in this article to go into any depth, keyword research involves the following:
Researching what people are searching for.
Assessing competition levels.
Targeting your site and the content you produce accordingly.
To get really good at this, I'd recommend heading over to Wordtracker.com who produce a wealth of information on this topic.
2. The next thing to do is to put lots of useful content on your website.
It is not enough just to have a pretty website. You want to have a website that has a lot of unique and useful content appearing on it. Even better if you can set up systems in your business so your website is publishing a steady stream of unique and useful content. It is like having a brick and mortar store. If you want people to come into your store, then you need to put stuff in it that makes people want to come inside. And once they are there, you want them to stick around. You also want to keep it fresh and regularly updated so that there's new items of interest for people to look at when they return. It's just the same with a website. You need to create reasons for people to want to look around your website. What people are looking for is unique and useful content. The more such content you have on your site, the more traffic you attract from the search engines and e lsewhere. Simply put, the more reasons you have for people to visit, the more traffic you will attract. Your website becomes naturally easier to market. The easiest way to add content to your site is to set up a WordPress blog, even if it is in a sub-directory of your existing website. You should then start publishing regularly on your blog. To attract search engine traffic, your posts should be on topics focused on the keyword phrases you have found in your research.
(A nice side effect is, when you regularly produce fresh content you have more excuse to contact your list and encourage them to come and look. Helps you stay front-of-mind for your prospects and customers.)
3. Take your blog content and re-purpose it to submit as articles.
You need to keep your blog content unique as much as possible so your site retains its uniqueness and value. However, you can rewrite your posts as short free reprint articles so they can be re-purposed for article marketing. This task is easily outsourced, or you can rewrite the posts yourself. The goal is to quickly and cheaply leverage your existing content to bring in traffic from article marketing.
4. Syndicate your articles. You have taken the time to write your article.
Now you want to maximize your return by distributing it as widely as you can to publishers. My general recommendation is to submit around 8 articles a month for each website. However there are no hard and fast rules. Link back from your articles using your keyword terms as anchor text. Anchor text is the actual text of the link that links back to your site. So if your site was about dog training, you might link 'dog training' from the article back to your website. This is known as keyword linking. Keyword linking helps search engines like Google understand what your site is about. You put the link in a 'resource box' at the end of the article. The resource box generally contains a bit about you and your business, and a link back to your site. One note of caution: It is best to vary your keyword links, or it can start to look unnatural. Keep it natural by varying the anchor text you use. Use keywords related in meaning so that search engines can build up a rounded picture of what your site is all about.
Do all the steps above over a few months, and you will create a very easy-to-market website that search engines will gladly send you traffic for. With such regular and focused content production, both published on your own site and then re-purposed and syndicated, it is only natural for you to attain significant and sustainable ranking improvements across a range of keywords.
As a consequence, you will start to see natural increases in traffic consisting of people who have a real interest in what your business has to offer.
Steve Shaw is the founder of SubmitYOURArticle.com, the web's leading article marketing service, used by thousands of small business owners worldwide to build traffic, leads and sales for their websites. You can grab a free report on how to attract sustainable, dirt-cheap, long-term, targeted traffic to your website at http://www.submityourarticle.com/gkic
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