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Internet Marketing Strategies; Formulate a good website marketing plan using this webpage as your website marketing resource
You need to contemplate your Internet marketing strategies now that you have a website. This section focuses on life after development; the ongoing online marketing it takes to ensure you are noticed on the Internet.
Simply creating a website will not get you the traffic and exposure you need to get you noticed. Most websites fail because people don’t tend to them after their creation and thus sites get lost in the cyberspace that no one ever notices them.
Having a website today is critical for any business, and depending on the type of business, it may become part of your overall marketing strategy. In fact many online businesses strictly rely on online marketing strategies to drive traffic to their website to generate business. It is very important that you develop an effective website marketing plan to get exposure.
Creating your website can be a simple process, whether you choose to do it yourself or work with a company that can create one for you fairly easily. The true challenge, however, is in getting your website exposed and giving your visitors a reason to come back to your site repeatedly. Use the Internet marketing strategies outlined below to engage in successful website marketing.
So how do you get exposure?
Search Engine Optimization (“SEO”)SEO is the bread and butter of online marketing. SEO refers to the process of optimizing your website to become compatible and more visible in the online capacity. The process involves a mix of tasks that allow search engines like Google and Yahoo to not only find you but also rank you higher on their list when someone searches for topics related to your website.
SEO is arguably the most important thing you can do for your website. SEO starts at the very basic level of website marketing and will help your site more than anything else that you engage in. The best thing about SEO is that the results are long term and they are free once you have put in all the time and effort it takes to optimize your site.
Read a more comprehensive discussion on SEO here.
Search engine marketing (“SEM”)SEM is the process by which you drive traffic to your website by marketing through search engines. SEM will involve some financial investment as you are paying search engines like Google & Yahoo certain fees for advertising your business online. A common example of one SEM approach is the use of Pay Per Click Marketing (also known as Google Adwords and Yahoo Search Marketing – formerly known as Overtures).
Another common example is online display advertising, which involves purchasing advertising space on popular websites to advertise your business. I know you are thinking banner ads by now and you are absolutely correct. It is very important to know the distinction of SEM from SEO.
Niche marketingNiche marketing is exactly what it sounds like. Instead on focusing on a broad constituency, target a very specialized group of potential customers/website visitors that your website is catered for.
For example, this section of my website is designed for individuals like you who want to learn about website creation, optimization, marketing and how to use that website to make money online. That purpose is pretty broad on its own. It would make no sense to optimize this section based on keywords related to the different types of personal computers and laptops that you should buy and what features you need to look for. Granted that the topics are related. However, it is best to focus on your main message throughout your marketing efforts.
If you start chasing too many too fast and all at the same time, you might end up getting nothing at the end of the day. So revisit your website’s main purpose and ask yourself who your true audience really is. Then gear all your search engine optimization and marketing efforts toward the niche you have identified.
Direct, sharp and focused Internet marketing strategies are the key to success.
Email marketing campaignThanks to spammers this very sensitive marketing strategy has developed a bad general perception over time. But also thanks to the new rules and regulations, and the increasing sophistication of email programs and spam fighters, the strategy is slowly but surely gaining its credibility back and is used more and more today by businesses to stay in touch with their loyal customers.
Email marketing should be used more to strengthen existing relationships with your visitor/customer rather than soliciting first time sales. Occasionally however, you will get some first time visitors through referrals from existing ones if you continue to continue to keep your existing customers happy.
A good use of email marketing may be to occasionally send out discount coupons through email. Or you can send periodic newsletters.
Read a comprehensive discussion on email marketing here.
Affiliate marketing programAffiliate marketing is one of my favorite online marketing strategies. You simply do not pay anyone until they give you results! Affiliate marketing is a strategy where you team up with other affiliates (business owners, individuals) and have them market your products and services for a per transaction compensation. You can decide to pay them a flat fee or a percentage based on the sale volume.
Affiliate marketing is free, flexible and you do not have to pay until you realize the results. Can you see why I like this?
Learn more about affiliate marketing programs here.
BlogA Blog, short for Web Log, has become one of the most popular forms of online discussions these days. A Blog is a personal log that one maintains, except in the online space. This allows the vast Internet population to see it and voice their comments and opinions.
A Blog can be a good place to discuss your business’ products and services and an avenue through which you (as the website owner) are engaging in discussion with your visitor base. If used properly, a Blog can be very, very powerful. Trust me, that is an understatement.
Article marketing / Ezine marketing & Press releasesArticle / Ezine and Press release marketing are fairly straightforward Internet marketing strategies. Both are very effective and cost efficient in terms of the benefits they provide. There are online vendors out there that charge to publish your article or press release. However, there are some good ones that are free of charge.
Articles / Ezine
With Article Marketing, you write and submit articles discussing your website’s topic. There is no limit to your exposure if you submit your article to the right place. You will be seen as an expert in your field if people read and enjoy your content. This builds strong credibility in you as well as your website. Expect to see a lot of traffic coming from this form of marketing.
Press release marketing involves releasing news about you and your website/business. Press releases are not quite as lengthy and extensive as articles. They simply contain brief language introducing new developments or announcements pertaining to your business to the public.
Think about short news stories that you see on a day to day basis. Pick up the newspaper today and look for a press release from a Fortune 500 company. It is often new and recent news about the company along with some company information such as the contact person, address, email and phone number amongst others.
Like article marketing, there is no limit to the exposure you get if you partner up with the right players in the industry.
Link Exchange MarketingAn often overlooked but very effective technique is exchanging links with other popular websites. Link exchanging is simply having an agreement between two websites to advocate one another by including each other’s links on their respective websites. When you approach a website to include your site’s link on their page, you are creating an “inbound link”. When you place a link to another website on your own website as a return favor, you are creating an “outbound” link.
Don’t confuse this with Affiliate Marketing, where businesses and individuals team up to promote each other’s products and services for a commission. In exchanging links, one party does not promise the other party anything. Search engines look highly upon websites that are referred by other credentialed websites. Therefore it is important to approach websites that are ranked well by search engines.
One of my favorite free tracking tools to use is Alexa. Simply enter the www.websiteaddress.com (URL) of the site you are performing your research on and Alexa will give you all the information you need to determine if you are pursuing the right partner. The lower the number, the better the rank.
It is also very important to approach websites with products and services similar but non-competing in nature to your topic. This is because search engines will penalize you if you simply have outbound and inbound links to and from sites that are irrelevant to your site’s topic. Search engines will view you as a link farm, a phrase that you definitely want to stay away from.
See sample letters you can send to prospective sites to exchange links with.
So how do you keep you visitors coming back for more?You can use as many of the Internet marketing strategies discussed in this section. But without good content on your website, you won’t go very far. The key to keep your visitor’s loyalty is to create good quality content and update your site frequently. Once a visitor finds you through your Internet marketing initiatives, your true test begins.
You need to establish your credibility as early as possible and be able to appeal to your visitor’s interest. People have a certain need when they browse the web and you need to address that need. Engage your visitor through quality information and by providing value for the time they spend on your site.
Value can be interpreted in several ways. Maybe you have a product that you are selling at a good price that the visitor is looking for, or maybe you have good information on making money online for someone looking to start an online business. Motivate your visitors to take action after you have established your credibility and have provided them with what they were looking for.
Taking action can also occur in different forms. Compel them to buy your product, or sign up for your newsletter. Finally, ensure that you are frequently adding good content to your site and staying in touch with your visitor base. This can be as simple as releasing email newsletters on a periodic basis or having an active Blog where you discuss recent developments in your website’s topic.
So, to summarize, establish your credibility (answer the question why should they come to you?), provide good quality content on your website, motivate visitors to take action and frequently update your site and remain active in establishing and building relationships with your visitor base.
Of course, apply the Internet marketing strategies you have learned here to make all of the above initiatives fruitful for your website. That’s it! The secret of website marketing has been revealed to you. Go out there and make it happen!
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