Driving Traffic To Your Website
Drive traffic to your new start up business with Paula Wynne's top tips for pimping your website.
Learn as much as you can about optimising your site with search engine optimisation so you don’t have to pay someone to do it for you! It can be done – I knew nothing about SEO because I had the budget to outsource this vital marketing function in my job as Marketing Manager of a hotel group – but when it came to setting up my own home business I had a dire need to learn as much as I could to get traffic to my site and so I taught myself all I could.
Be a sponge – learn, learn, learn! It pays off in the end.
Here are a few good, easy pointers to get you going ...
#1 Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
What is SEO? It’s one of those phrases that floats straight over people’s heads and you see their eyes glaze over as they try to digest the meaning. SEO is the process of improving the ranking of a website within search engine results.
There are stacks of different modes to get your website optimised so that the search engines will find you. You MUST optimise your website or it will more than likely not get found.
Although it is a complex and often lengthy process (depending on the size of the website and the competitive rating) it can easily be done yourself when following the basic ‘Do It Yourself’ steps, as outlined in Pimp My Site.
Caption: Using long tail keywords in your ‘On Page Optimisation’ in the following strategic places on your page will get your Google to sit up and take notice of you.
#2 Digital Marketing
There are a number of easy ways you can drive traffic to their website. This includes SEO – both On Page Optimisation and Off Page Optimisation, strategic keyword placement, correct use of Meta data, Google Adwords, Social Media, YouTube videos, which must also be optimized, PR and finding unique publicity angles, and email marketing.
For the savvy digital start up business, a blog is a key marketing tool. Blogs allow you to engage in a conversation with your home businesses fans while improving your website's search engine rank. Blogging is highly beneficial as it increases SEO with lots of juicy content for Google to gobble and helps aspiring start-ups grow a social network to interact with fans.
#3 Email Marketing
Email marketing is probably the most effective digital method of marketing your site because it is fast, cost-effective, personalised, flexible and above all – targeted. You set up an email mailing list with goals to deliver messages about emailing campaigns to a group of people or recipients who have opted into your list.
As with all your marketing efforts, your email marketing starting point has to be your visitors’ interest in you as a start up business or freelance consultant. Email marketing works a treat when run alongside your PR and marketing campaigns.
#4 Social Media (SM)
Start playing with the various Social Media tools because SM forms a sizeable chunk of online marketing. Social Media tools and techniques are spreading fast and furious so tinker around the various SM apps and aggregators. There are many digital marketing tools to juggle so don’t sign up to all the platforms, choose which is best for you.
It is interesting to note that your Social Media tweets, blogs and posts are also included in Google’s search results. For example, using the same search term from above (Home Business Social Network), you can also see the following two results Google found in Twitter and YouTube, both using the keywords I searched.
The moral of the story: use long tail keywords in your social media, often Google will deliver those results first!
#5 Online Publicity
If you’re new to PR it may not come naturally to you to promote your website or explore inventive ways to increase your traffic through publicity. Here’s a link to give you a quick foray into the PR world.
As a start up business entrepreneur you must learn how to find a newsworthy angle with human interest stories that attract the media. Then combine this with a busy ‘news room’ to ensure your release lands under the right editor’s nose.
Set up a ‘press kit’ with the most vital PR tool – a press release to get your start up story, book home business product reviews or event in front of a journalist or editor. A well-written press release is a notice or story sent to the media with the aim of attracting their interest and gaining valuable editorial space in their publication. You can submit your news to iHubbub for free to get promoted to the media.
If your press release is not newsworthy with no human angle and not in the right format it will be binned!
#6 Long Tail Keywords
Like Pinocchio’s nose that kept on growing with each porky he uttered, long tail keywords are words and phrases that best describe your talents, skills or services. They are words strung together to form a really long phrase. The most effective long tail keywords are the ones highly relevant and specific to your website.
Each page of your site MUST have a primary message for your visitors, so explore these keywords, finding creative paths to string the words and phrases together and weave them throughout the page content.
In iHubbub’s case, our main keywords are extremely competitive - ‘home business’ or ‘home based business’. So, how could we use this keyword phrase to be more specific and relevant to our site? To create an even better long-tailed keyword, we started optimising ‘home business social network’.
You see, when your visitors use a highly specific search phrase, they tend to be looking for exactly what they are actually going to buy. In our case not to buy, but to join our site to meet, connect and trade with other home business owners and website start-ups. Within a couple of months of our site’s launch the long tail phrase ‘home business social network’ was already ranked number #3 on Google.
#7 Video Marketing
Platforms such as YouTube have given browsers greater access to the use of web video as well as increased marketing penetration for web owners. Video marketing is another essential avenue to increase ‘direct traffic’ to your website.
You can do this by having highly desirable videos which in turn will grow your video channel’s subscribers and build inbound links into your website. Having fun and light-hearted viewing will develop your writing personality and brand and increase awareness for you as the next up and coming entrepreneur!
Good Luck Pimping Your Website!