With more than 4 billion websites indexed on Google it is clear that the internet has become the favoured place to connect and find information. This provides a great opportunity to level the playing fields for smaller businesses.
In reality, very few small businesses are able to compete because they do not take the internet seriously as a strategically important marketing channel. The result is that many small businesses do not invest much time in understanding how the dynamics of the internet can work to their advantage, and so they embark on a pretty meaningless campaign aimed at pushing product at their prospects. This rarely results in traffic to their websites, as they just drown in the clutter.
There are many techniques that the small business can use to create interest and drive traffic to their websites. Here are 5 of our favourites:
Google offers primarily 2 different types of advertising: Pay-Per-Click (PPC) adverts and organic search results. PPC has its place if you are looking to catch the attention of prospects that are currently searching for a product or service that you offer. Well selected keywords can make a substantial difference in driving traffic to your website.
Being listed on page 1 of Google’s organic search results is even better as there is no direct cost for this. However, it takes constant attention and effort to ensure that your spot is not taken over by someone else.
Using Google advertising has the disadvatage for small business that larger organisations can usually afford to appoint online marketing specialists to optimise their websites on an ongoing basis, whereas the small business owner often has to do this him-/herself.
Your own website should be jam-packed with great articles about how you solve problems and create value for your clients. These articles should be reasonably brief and offer great advice, like this article you are reading right now.
But you have an opportunity to share this information with others by offering your content on their own websites. Choose companies that offer related services to yours as you are more likely to secure link-backs. For example: If you are a moving company, write an article with practical tips on how to pack belongings when moving house. Then offer this article for placement on websites belonging to estate agents.
Use all of your offline advertising to drive information to your website. This includes business cards, pamphlets, posters, banners, signage etc. Just listing you website address is not enough. Explain in a brief but powerful way why the person should visit your site. For example: On the back of your business card include a phrase like – “Visit our website for practical packing tips when moving house.” Now you are creating a reason to visit your website that offers value to the reader. Use a QR code with the address of the article to make it even easier to find the information.
Because your website is full of practical advice and useful information about the problems your prospects often experience, use email campaigns to make your existing contacts aware of this information. Instead of sending a meaninless newsletter or a spam-type advert, send out an email with great advice. For example: “Moving house can be a very stressful event and so many things can go wrong. One of them is packing and unpacking. We have placed a useful article on our website that gives some practical tips on how to pack effectively.” Then provide a link to the article.
Participating in social media marketing, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter etc. is another way of driving traffic to a website. A great way of doing this is to use the status update facility on a daily basis to create awareness of the powerful information on your website. Create expectation of great value being gained by clicking on an attached link to your website. Drive this traffic to one of your valuable hints & tips articles, rather than a sales focused page.
For an example of how this works, click through to the Think Aspects Facebook profile and see how we do this.
The above ideas are some of favourite ways of driving traffic to a website. Why not look at how you could adopt some of them into your own website marketing?
If you are not sure how this applies to your unique circumstances or how to get started, please contact us and we will be happy to share some further thoughts with you.
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