5 Strategies to Make your Website Work for you in 2016.
Launching a website can be a daunting activity. You've got all your information on your website and you want to improve your online presence. So now what? You wonder what you can do to drive traffic to your website. Do you need to hire somebody to keep it up-to-date? Where do you start?
Follow these 5 steps and you'll be sure to make a difference in 2016: Share, Serve, Assess, Guide, and Optimize.
1. Share - The first thing you must do once your website is launched
You've launched your website and you want people to check it out. You can't assume that people will naturally find it as soon as it is launched. But you don't necessarily want to have to pay for advertising. Luckily, you can leverage what you already have. As a starter, you can update your business cards and brochures to include the URL to your shiny new website. However, the best thing you can do is to send out an eMail to all your contacts to let them know that you have just launched your website. Next, you want to make sure that you have a Newsletter sign-up included on your website to keep your visitors engaged. And finally, you want to post it on Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
2. Serve - The number one strategy to drive traffic to your website
Did you know that approximately 96% of visitors that come to your website are not ready to buy? Your goal is to have your readers come back to your website on a regular basis. So, how do you do that? Give your readers what they want - your best tips. Have them sign up for your Newsletter so they can benefit from your expertise on a weekly basis. Send them a Newsletter eMail every time you create a new blog post. Tell them how you can make a difference in their life or help them make their dreams come true. You are reaching potential clients on a regular basis rather than waiting for them to visit your website. This also builds trust, keeps them engaged, and shows off your genius.
3. Assess - Use this one tool to help you decide what to update
You are probably wondering how effective your website is and how you can help improve it. What page are people landing on? What sites are they coming from? How long are they staying on certain pages? What pages are they going to once they land on your site? Are they going to the page that you expect them to? You can get all these answers by using Google Analytics? So gather up your data and assess the traffic on your site. Are they landing where you expect them to? Why not? Where are they coming from? What are they searching for? Are your titles compelling enough? Try to understand what you can change to encourage them to go your most valued pages. Maybe you need to add a button on the most popular page to guide them to your most valued page. For example, if visitors are always landing on your "Schedule" page, adding a button to check out your new Yoga Classes could increase your clientele.
4. Guide - One of the biggest mistakes business owners make
You have 0-8 seconds to engage a visitor on your website with compelling headlines and content. After 8 seconds, many visitors move on to something else. So, you’ve got your compelling headline and you’ve engaged your visitor, now what? Exactly, now what? If you don’t guide them, they will move on to the next website. So tell them what you want them to do and guide them to your ideal page. This is known as a "Call-to-Action" in the website world and some great examples are: Sign up for my newsletter, Check out our Schedule / Products / Services / Events / Speakers, Get a price, Work with Me, Get a Free Consultation, Donate, Register, Order, Share, Become a member, Tweet, Contact Me, Ask a Question, Comment, Provide Feedback, Give a testimonial. Or ask them to leave a comment in your blog post - e.g. "What is your goto gluten free muffin recipe that you serve to your picky eater?"
5. Optimize - Making friends with Google is easier than you think
Google uses some mythical algorithms that only the people from Google understand and leaves the rest of us completely mystified. So, what do we do? Remember that "Content is king"; meaning that genuine authentic and descriptive blogs are your best bet. Ensure they include phrases and keywords that people will use in "Google Search". Make sure your services are clearly described using common industry terms. Another great strategy is to include your location or what city you are nearest to because Google often picks up on local websites. Google also loves its own tools - so include a Google Map on your website, references to YouTube and sign-up for Google Places. Even better, ask somebody to leave a review (a great one, of course) on Google Places and Google will rank you even higher. If you are using images, make sure they are labelled with a meaningful name (e.g. best-photography-filter-for-recipe-images.jpg) and are compressed - Google will actually parse the image name and rank more highly if images load quickly. And finally, partner with a complementary business so you can have them include a link to your website - you will get more Google points if you are mentioned by a reputable site.
All of this is doable on your own and you can start today with these 3 steps:
- Don't be shy - brag on all your favorite Facebook groups about your new website.
- Help out your peeps by telling them about your best known secret in your next blog post.
- Partner with a complimentary business owner and ask them to add a link to your website.
Sounds easy, right? It can be, but maybe you are already overwhelmed with your own work. If that's the case, focus on what you do best and leave the rest to me. Contact me to see if we are a good fit. I'd love to help.
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Have a success story to share about making your website work for you? Leave a comment.