“Build it, and they will come,” conjures up an idea of effortless success.
It’s a phrase, misquoted from the 1989 film “Field of Dreams,” that’s become a mantra in many circles, none more so than among entrepreneurs and business owners setting up their first websites.
But let’s get real for a moment: this adage is useless when it comes to creating a digital home for your business.
Launching a new website isn’t a case of setting it up and waiting for the crowds to flock in. Because, in the bustling, ever-evolving digital world, your new site is nothing more than a needle in a haystack.
The reality is there are 250,000 new websites launched EVERY SINGLE DAY.
If you want people to visit your new site, you’ll need to work very hard to help them find it. As well as knowing how to market your products and services, you must also understand how to market your website.
Maximising Visibility for Your New Website
How will you ensure your website isn’t just another drop in the digital ocean, sitting on page 15 of a Google search, where no one ever goes? How do we make your new site a beacon that attracts droves of visitors?
Let’s delve into the nitty-gritty of improving your website’s visibility, cementing a robust online presence for your business, and steering traffic your way.
Crafting Your Digital Shop Window
First things first, let’s review what you’ve got. You need to ensure your website mirrors your brand – its ethos, values and mission.
Think of your website as your digital shop window – it must be enticing! Ensure your branding elements like logos, colours, photos, and fonts are consistent throughout and that your website’s design resonates with your audience.
There’s obviously more to a website than just the visuals. The user experience needs to be seamless. Easy navigation and a smooth browsing experience are vital to make your visitors’ stay enjoyable and memorable.
Make sure you’ve thought about how people navigate your pages. You have to make it easy for them to buy something or get in touch.
Content is king – we’ve all heard it, but it’s true. Your website should be a treasure trove of valuable information that positions you as the go-to person in your field. If at all possible, make sure you talk about your customer’s problems first and then how you can help. Even though this is your website, it should not be all about you.
The only exception to this is your ‘About Us’ page. This section is not just a formality; it’s your brand’s storybook. Add visuals, share your journey and flaunt your expertise. Testimonials and reviews are vital – they provide the proof that can sway potential customers in your favour.
And let’s not forget SEO – the behind-the-scenes hero. Optimising your website’s content and structure is crucial for visibility in search engine results, attracting more organic traffic from Google and Bing.
Boosting Your Website’s Profile
Once you have ticked all the above boxes and your brand is shining online, let’s talk about amplifying your website’s visibility.
On-going SEO is your trusty steed here. Start with thorough keyword research and infuse all new website content with relevant keywords. Focus on creating top-quality content that answers your audience’s burning questions, and ensure those questions have some search volume behind them.
But don’t stop at content. On-page SEO tricks like meta tags, header tags and descriptive URLs are your friends when it comes to climbing the search engine ranks.
Revving Up Traffic with Advanced SEO
Advanced SEO strategies can be your secret weapon to turbocharge traffic to your website. We’re talking about esoteric things like link building, pillar content and voice search optimisation, which is way beyond most business owners (myself included), so find yourself an SEO expert.
High-quality backlinks can also give your website’s authority a hefty boost.
Schema markup can also spruce up your website’s appearance in search results, making it more clickable. Keep abreast of SEO trends and algorithm updates (or pay someone to do it for you) – it’s a fast-moving world out there!
Boost Your Website’s Reach with Social Media
To make a mark, you need to engage with your audience and make yourself known actively.
Jump on relevant social media platforms, start a conversation and build a community around your brand.
Social media isn’t just for memes and cat videos; it can be a potent tool for promoting your website. Develop a social media strategy that echoes your brand’s voice. Regular posts with eye-catching visuals and compelling captions are the way to go.
And remember, it’s called ‘social’ media for a reason – engagement is vital. Chat with your followers, host Q&As and let your brand’s personality shine.
Harnessing the Power of Email Marketing
Email marketing is like a fine wine – it just gets better. Capture email addresses by offering irresistible content, then keep your audience hooked with newsletters, updates and special offers. Remember, most people check emails on their phones, so make sure your emails look great on mobile.
Exploring Paid Advertising
For an instant visibility lift, dip your toes into paid advertising (aka. pay per click – PPC). Platforms like Google Ads and social media ads offer precise targeting options to let you reach your ideal crowd. Keep a keen eye on your campaigns, and don’t shy away from A/B testing to find what resonates best with your audience.
My top tip is to first experiment with low-value Facebook advertising (if appropriate) and build from there. If you are thinking about Google Ads, don’t do it yourself. Find yourself a Google-certified PPC expert. This way, you will avoid wasting a whole heap of money.
Content Is King: Creating Engaging Website Content
Regardless of the strategies you employ, captivating content is your ace card. Mix it up with articles, videos, infographics and case studies. Focus on readability and search engine friendliness. Keep your paragraphs bite-sized, use sub-headings and sprinkle in keywords naturally.
And why not spread your wings with guest blogging? It’s a brilliant way to rub shoulders with industry bigwigs and reel in new visitors.
Measuring Success with Analytics
To keep your strategies sharp, you need to know what’s working and what’s not. Tools like Google Analytics can offer insights into visitor behaviour, traffic sources, and conversion rates. Keep an eye on metrics like bounce rate and session duration to figure out what tweaks are needed.
Refining Your Strategy with Analytics
Armed with data, continuously refine your approach. The digital landscape is ever-changing, so staying on top of trends and best practices is essential.
Good Old-Fashioned Offline Marketing
With all this concentration on the digital world, don’t forget to publicise your website in the real world, too. Add QR codes linked to your website to your business cards and display signage. Make sure your web address is visible on printed marketing and stationery. Make a point of referring people to your website for information.
As we’ve seen, launching a new website is just the beginning of your journey. To make your mark, you must establish your brand online, boost your visibility, and engage with your new-found audience.
Employ strategies like social media marketing, SEO, email marketing and paid advertising. Create engaging content, track your performance, and use analytics to refine your approach. And don’t forget to publicise your website offline as well.
If you stick with these steps, you’ll be well on your way to making your website the marketing engine of your business. You can say: “I built it, and they did come.”
“That’s all very well,” you may be thinking, “but when someone told me I needed a website for my business, I never knew I was going to have to do all this extra work as well.”
Well, I’m sorry to be the bearer of unwelcome news.
The reality is not like in the TV ads, where as soon as a new business builds a website, they are magically rushed off their feet with new customers and are barely able to cope.
The truth is that a website, like a brochure, is a marketing tool. If you printed 20,000 brochures and left them in a box, undistributed, that would be a complete waste of time and money.
The same principle applies to your new website. Build it, and don’t tell anyone it’s there, and you may as well not have bothered.
Google certainly won’t do all the work for you. But they will help if you do your SEO properly, keep adding valuable content, and have a bit of patience.
Marketing anything, websites included, requires consistent, persistent action. The tools to use are mentioned in the article – but doing all that work is beyond most SMEs’ capabilities.
Luckily, there are many specialists who can assist you. I can certainly help with a lot of it – branding design, website design, content creation, email newsletters, and the over-arching website marketing strategy that holds it all together.
For the more specialised elements (social media management, SEO, PPC), I can help you find trusted professionals to manage the work for you.
Ready to turn your website from a hidden gem into a shining beacon?
Don’t let your digital dreams just be dreams. Whether you’ve just launched a new site or are contemplating taking the leap, let’s chat. I’m here to make the complex world of website and brand marketing a breeze for you.
Get in touch today, and let’s start this journey together – your digital success story is just a conversation away!