Nice Website; no visitors?

It’s a common scenario for lots of small to medium sized businesses. Back in the 1990s everyone got themselves a website, as much because everyone said you needed to have one than for good business reasons. Since then lots of organisations have improved their site. Some have added smarter graphics, some animation and video and it often makes for a pretty impressive visit.

So once customers and prospects visit they are quite likely to take things further, with an enquiry or a purchase. All very well, but what do you do if there aren’t enough visitors ? It probably goes without saying that everything you produce should have your website address on it, from business card to adverts; from invoice to promotional pen etc. But as far as on-line advertising is concerned I think there are only 3 ways.

1. Search engine optimisation

You organise your site in such a way that most common search engines display your site when prospects are looking for your products or services. Easy? NO! Every man and his dog is trying to get that elusive first page listing and when most searches reveal millions of matches it’s usually pretty tough, unless you have a business that’s so unique that you don’t really have competitors. Google is the most popular search engine by far.

They rank websites according to multiple criteria like an analysis of the body text starting with your home page, the number of active links to other popular sites, the names of each of your pages, the currency of the site i.e. how often it is maintained, the relevance of domain names pointing at your site and others which change regularly.

So if you want to be ranked highly you either spend a lot of time in the evening and weekends optimising or, more likely, as with other non-core activities in your business employ an expert to do it for you.

All the search engines earn their money from online advertising- the adverts at the top of the page and down the right hand side when your search results are displayed. It can be very effective as we’ve mentioned in previous Snippets. It’s easy to set up, you can change campaigns and keywords regularly, you can set a maximum spend and it’s pretty easy to get a top page ranking by paying enough to be there.

For many businesses the best thing is that if and when you get really busy you can stop your advertising immediately, and only recommence your campaign when you see a need for more business coming up. On the down side searchers don’t trust the results as much as the left hand side results.

3. Directories

There are masses of directories about. Everything from Go Compare to City Visitor; Yell to Many of them have worked very well on their own optimisation so they often come up highly ranked for searching prospects, who may well click on them. So it’s a good idea to be included in as many as possible.

Quite a lot will make some sort of charge for you to be listed but a lot are free. So do some research and give them a go.

Which methods are best for your business? Well, it depends what your organisation does and how you do it, and even then you won’t really know until you try it. So like so much of marketing, keep testing and testing and repeating what works for you. But the really good thing is that your website statistics will tell you exactly where your website visitors are coming from i.e. what does work, and what doesn’t.

And you do have website statistics set up, don’t you????

Contact Parallel Creative if you have any requirements regarding Graphic Design, Web Design, Corporate Videos, Social Media or general Marketing queries.

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