Your brand new website might be bright and shiny, perfectly created, elegantly styled – a thing of beauty and a joy for ever – but unless you drive traffic to it, it’s like a shop window with the curtains drawn.

If your website doesn’t work you need to consider first exactly what is not working. For example (and there are many possibilities):

  • It doesn’t seem to get the traffic (you can check that with your analytics)
  • It’s getting traffic but not making sales (have you thoroughly tested the shopping experience – people may be only getting so far and then unable to finalise the sale),
  • The navigation is too complex … or … most common of all …
  • No one is visiting because you are not doing anything to drive traffic to it

Many people seem to think that the website itself is enough. I have a website – let the world beat a path to my door. Unfortunately, it’s not enough. Like a real business on a real street, you need to point people to it, tell them where it is. A new barber shop opened near our offices a couple of weeks ago. They’ve placed signboards around the High Street, moving them to different locations every day, ensuring you really can’t fail to notice them. That’s what you need to do with your website.

So what signboards? How? Here are some quick suggestions:

  • If your think your business is worth it, pay for Search Engine Optimisation – it will help to drive search engine traffic that would have otherwise gone to your competitors
  • Consider email marketing to your customers and prospects – its low-cost, measurable and very effective when it’s done well
  • Write a blog – it’s a sure-fire winner in helping to boost your authority in your area of expertise, drive new people to your website and keep your content fresh on your website if you syndicate it there
  • Get into social media – if you’re B2B, then build a LinkedIn company profile and get new followers and their recommendations from existing clients; if you’re B2C, build a Facebook company profile and do the same; in either case, use Twitter to get your message across

All these are signboards that tell people where you are and what you do. Get advice and a bit of training – there are so many people offering courses on this sort of thing – and tune your website to make it ever more effective. Don’t keep it hidden!

Nick from ExtraMile Communications Ltd in Eccleshall, Staffordshire.

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