What Is Website Promotion?
Tips on How to Promote Your Home Business Website
Website promotion is a collection of marketing tactics, actions, and techniques that drive traffic (visitors) to your website. Whether you have a freelance business, blog, or ecommerce business...whatever website you have your home business, you need to do web promotion to let people know about it.
Why Is Website Promotion Important?
Websites offer many benefits for the home business owner. For some online entrepreneurs, they are storefronts selling goods. Others earn income through advertising, sponsorships and affiliate marketing, such as on blogs. Other types of websites are marketing tools in and of themselves, providing information about the business and how to best get in touch for services in an online brochure. While all these website options work, they only fulfill their purpose if people visit them. If you think of a website like a storefront, that store doesn't make money unless someone walks in and buys. If a website is like an online magazine (such as a blog), it only makes money if people visit and buy from advertisers. As a marketing tool, websites deliver information about your business only if the market knows about and visits it.
Web promotion is how online businesses get the word out about the website. The more targeted traffic (visitors who fit your target market) a website receives, the better the chance of generating leads, making sales, earning ad income, and gaining clients.
Because there are so many different ways you can market your website, it can get overwhelming. Further, without a plan your promotional efforts can be a waste of time. As you prepare to market your website, here are few things to do and keep in mind.
- Know Your Target Market: Your goal isn't just in getting as much traffic to your site as possible. A million visitors means nothing if none of them are interested in what you offer. Knowing and understanding your target market will allow you to focus your marketing efforts on those activities that put your message in front of your most likely visitor in a way that entices them to visit.
- Use Search Engine Optimization Strategies: but don't rely on search engines alone to deliver traffic. Making it easy for search engines to understand, index, and rank your site is a no-brainer. It's free and not that hard to do. At the same time, you don't need to spend a fortune in SEO services or hours and hours studying SEO. Checking your website stats and keywords every month or so will help you understand how people are using search engines to find your site and other information in your business area.
- Promote Where Your Market Hangs Out: If your market isn't on Twitter, you don't need to tweet. When considering how and where to promote, think about where your market goes to get similar information and resources related to what you offer. This isn't just other websites or social networks, but also, offline sources such as groups and print media. For example, if you have a fitness blog for moms with young children, you'll have more success having promotional campaigns in other mom blogs, mom-focused magazines, mom-centered online groups, etc. You'd have even more success if those options specifically target moms who want to get fit.
- Hook Your Market With a Message That Speaks to Them: That means opening with a hook that entices and intrigues your market. It should be benefits-oriented in that it promises to solve a problem, improve life, or be entertaining. The better your promotional copy, the better and bigger the results on your marketing campaign.
- Track Your Efforts: You'll save time and money if you know what promotions are delivering results and which aren't.
Creating Your Website Promotional Plan
Once you've answered the above questions, use the answers to develop a marketing plan. While it can be helpful to check out what your competition does, you'll have best results if you always keep these three things in mind:
- Who is the target market?
- Where can they be found?
- How can I entice them to check out my business?
Each decision you make about the promotional tactics you'll use should answer the above questions. If you're going to use Twitter, have you checked that your market hangs out there? What sort of Tweets do they respond to? Discount offers? Inspirational quotes?
You should also diversify without overwhelming yourself. You don't need to be on every social media platform, but you should be on more than one. Consider the most common places your market spends time online and off, and work to make a plan that has you in those places. For example, if you have a cake decorating blog, you should probably be on Pinterest. Youtube might be another great option as you can give video tutorials on cake decorating.
Types of Web Promotion
There are endless ways to promote your website, and new methods keep being created. Websites can be promoted in a variety ways both online and off.
Online Website Promotion
Anything that allows you to include your website URL can be considered promotion including an email signature line or participating in online forums. Here are a few common website promotion tactics:
- Email marketing (note, every website owner should have an email list!)
- Blog marketing
- Social Media
- Search engine marketing
- Article Writing/Guest Blogging
- YouTube Videos (Your own or on another hosts video TV show)
- Podcasting (Your own or on another host's show)
Offline Website Promotion
Some offline website promotion techniques include:
- Direct mail
- Public speaking
- Article Writing (i.e for magazines and other print publications)
- Trade Shows
- Television and radio advertising
- Newspaper advertising
The ideas listed above are not the only strategies you can use to promote your website. Success entrepreneurs are constant learners, and one topic they frequently study is marketing and promotion. You should do the same. There are many blogs, magazines, books, and more. Not only will give you marketing ideas, but also give you tips on how to maximize your marketing efforts, and keep you informed of new marketing strategies.