Do you have a website that doesn’t have customer traffic and isn’t making you money? If so, this article will help you change that today. Stop wasting days on end waiting for the phone to ring or waiting for orders to come that just never do. Let’s look at 5 basic principles that will turn your website from a dud to a winner. (HERE’s my shameless plug, contact Springboard Website Designs and I’ll help you gain customers AND make you money)
Since you’re at this article, you’ve probably researched this topic before. Just like me, I was at this point as well. I had a great looking website design site, a great product to offer and no real reason why my phone wasn’t ringing off the hook. What could be the problem? I searched for hours and found hundreds of articles that said to optimize your website, speed up your website, get more backlinks, spend money advertising. Argg…. Even as a website designer, I was quickly overwhelmed with all the work that needed to be done. So I set out doing my best to tackle these issues one by one. You’ve probably quickly learned that there isn’t a magic pill or WordPress plugin you can buy that changes your website traffic over night. Believe me, if there was, I would have bought it. Well, at least I would have thought about it. Instead you quickly find a bunch of SEO ads and emails that you start seeing promising things like ‘We’ll get you to #1 on Google’.
Lesson #1: SEO is | can be expensive
YUUUUUPPPPPP!!!!! Here’s the deal. SEO experts charge a lot, because they can. Many SEO experts are like used car salesmen. Kinda shady, want to sell you a huge package, and are promising you the moon. All you have to do is empty your entire business checking account and wait for Google to fix your problems. Wrong. SEO is just a tool to help you. You can help yourself. Do get SEO help in the form of keyword research, rank tracking and researching your competitors. This doesn’t have to cost a lot, but it will cost you. Several hundred dollars a month for an hiring an expert is not unreasonable and but there are free tools available that allow you to do some of the work for yourself. The most important part of SEO, regardless of what anyone tells you, is….
Lesson #2: You can’t rank for content that isn’t written
Bingo. Unless your website can catch lightning in a bottle, you can’t just wish into existence ranking on Google (watch out for shady SEO people that build crappy backlinks to websites – this is called Black Hat link building = BAD TACTIC). The answer is what you are reading right now. You need to BLOG. If you’re like me, you might be thinking ‘what the heck am I going to write about’? Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. What do they want to know most? Try to write articles that will inform them. You may only get 1 out of 100 people that actually read your articles but the bigger prize is that Google reads each and every word you write. Regardless, Google and your customers will get to know what your business is about and how you can help them. You help Google by writing content that will rank your business in your business sector. You help your customers by writing articles that will help position you as the expert and make them more likely to hire you.
Lesson #3: Insert keywords into your blog articles
Remember my point about helping yourself by doing Keyword Research? You need to know what words rank in Google and how many people are searching for those terms. Here is an actual example. Get ready…
Obviously I own a website design company in Boise ID. This doesn’t mean that I can’t rank in Google for website design company in Meridian ID. Or rank for dog grooming website design.
You see what I did there? The underlined terms above are actual terms that this very website has been ranking for. Don’t get caught up in trying to shoehorn the exact phrase in your blog. Google doesn’t include ‘in’ or ‘the’ in keywords. Words like that won’t matter. Google is smart enough to remove those prepositions. The entire point is to write. Write something, write anything and make sure to include keywords in what you want to write. For your benefit, look up Keyword Stuffing and avoid that at all cost and only focus on one or two keywords in each article.
Lesson #4: Link your pages and articles within each other.
The internet is weird. You honestly can never tell what will catch fire and be shared 1 time or 1 billion times on the internet. That being said, whenever you have a page or an article that gets a lot of attention on your site, you need to spread that “link juice” to your other pages. How do you do that? Well you need to include links to other pages on your site. Take for example a blog I wrote not long ago that has more tips on 5 Things Great Websites Get Right or 5 Benefits of Investing in a Professional Web Design Company – What to Know. Again, see what I did there? Try to be informative and get positive SEO juice to each of your pages by creating a spider web of internal linking throughout your website. Now hopefully one of your articles gets shared or maybe catches fire and receives lots of hits. When it does, the linking power of that article or page will be shared with all the other pages on your site and now your site will start the climb the almighty Google rankings.
Lesson #5: Organic traffic ROCKS. Paid traffic stinks but may be necessary.
This is a big lesson. How the heck can you get customers to your website, TODAY? Ah, the big question. The only thing close to a magic pill in this article is here. Advertising. This should be no shock to you but you have to know a strategy to pull this off. Paid advertising will show your good or service to hundreds or thousands of people. Google and all other advertisers know this and will make you pay dearly for that exposure. PPC (Pay Per Click) advertising is the most popular form. I’ve used it myself and holy cow, your budget can go fast. You may find yourself getting clicks, but still the phone doesn’t ring and you are left with zero dollars for more advertising. You may be left wondering why you didn’t get any orders or calls. Now you need to look at your messaging. Do you have clear calls to action on your website? Is your messaging on your site engaging your customers? Is your website confusing? Look at all these factors BEFORE you create your ad. It’s an expensive lesson that many small business owners, myself included, have had to learn the hard way. Here is one of my articles that goes over this very topic (4 Essential Tips to Help Improve Your Website Design – Our Guide).
Just know that paid traffic should only be part of the solution to getting customers to your website. Organic traffic is ultimately what you want to grow. Blogging, creating clear messaging, clear calls to action; these tactics will not only get customers to your door for free, but will compel them to complete an action on your website once they get there. Why pay to get customers to your website if they do not know what to do when they land there? You end up wasting your money.
*I would be remiss if I didn’t say that advertising shouldn’t be a part of your ongoing efforts. Complete any Google search and note that the top 40% of the search page is nothing but advertisements. Being #1 on the Google search list doesn’t always cut it anymore as paid advertisements will be displayed before your site is even listed in the search results.
Being a small business owner is tough especially when you have a website that is not performing. Your website is your company’s 24/7 best marketing tool and it has to be right to attract customers. The right design, great messaging etc.. needs to be in place to get customers to do what you want them to do. You have to put in the hard work and do experiments to find out what works. If you are looking for help, feel free to reach out and I’ll take all the experience and lessons that I’ve learned the hard way and guide you to getting more customers and turning your website into a cash generating machine.