You’ve built it – why haven’t they come?

You’ve hired a web designer to re-design your website so that it reflects your brand and meets your business’ goals.  This process can take weeks, even months of work that includes building the sitemap, prototype, design, development and testing. Finally the big day has come for your website launch, hurrah! But without taking some steps to get it noticed, it’s just another shiny new website amongst millions out there. The problem is a website alone is not effective in of itself, it is only the tip of the iceberg. In this article you will learn the next steps to take after your website has launched.

Website vs. Social

A big question I get asked is “should I work on re-designing my website or ramp up my social media”?  It’s like creating a giant sign to advertise your store, meanwhile the store front is falling apart. Your website is the FIRST THING you should get done, then work on the rest.

#1 Set Up Google Analytics Goals

Google Analytics is a customer behavior tracking service that tracks data. The biggest feature of Google Analytics is that you can set up goals to measure your campaigns’ success. By tracking these goals you can find out what does and doesn’t work.

Even before your site goes live, set up a Google Analytics account. Plan what goals you are trying to achieve so by the time the site is launched you are ready to start collecting the data. An example of this is creating landing pages and tracking their conversion rates. Here is a great article by Kissmetrics about different goal types you might  track in Google 4 Google Analytics Goal Types that are Critical to Your Business

#2 Blog Regularly

Keeping your website content fresh is a CRITICAL STEP to getting it noticed by your audience and getting ranked by Google. Writing a blog adds value without asking for anything in return.

Think about it this way – when you are at a farmer’s market and there are hundreds of stalls, would you be attracted to the vendor who is sitting in a corner or the one who is in-front of their stall with a big friendly smile, waving for you to come in?

Blog only if you are committed. There is nothing worse than an old, outdated blog that has not been kept up. This can actually be detrimental and send the negative message that you don’t care. Here are some great tips for blogging…

4 Factors Of Blogging

by easyeMerge.  From Visually.

#3 Push Your Content on Social Media

I could write a whole blog post about this. When posting to Social Media, think of yourself as someone who has knowledge you want to share. You will get more likes and views if you are perceived as someone who is trying to help rather than market a product or services you want to sell.

Once you finish your blog, post it on your social networks, and be sure to post regularly. Participate in discussions, give good advice and develop relationships. It’s like going to a party, where you can make contacts that may eventually turn into leads and ultimately customers down the road.

#4 Convert viewers into subscribers

While Social Media is new and modern, Email Marketing may seem like its ancient, but it actually works. Getting your audience to subscribe to emails is better than waiting for them to find you through an RSS feed. Make sure the “Subscribe to email” is EASY TO FIND (above the fold – so when you get to the page you don’t need to scroll to find it) whether its in the content or sidebar of your blog and inside pages.  Use SOCIAL PROOF to get visitors to trust you when inviting them to join i.e. “Join 1,000’s of small businesses who have received our weekly updates”. Another way to get people who are on the fence to sign up is to offer a FREE INCENTIVE.

#5 Ask for Reviews

Reviews are an excellent way to get noticed in Google. Review sites like Yelp, Google, Trip Advisor and Facebook use tags that show directly in the Google results. For example, if you Google “850 Degrees Pizzeria”,  all the gold star ratings makes it stand out from the crowd. When asking your clients to leave a review, make sure it is honest and positive to ensure your business will be around in the future.

While this is the just the beginning, it is a good start to expand your online presence beyond just your website.

Don’t fall into the trap of expecting your website to be an end in itself, as some newcomers do. By following some of the tips in this article you can expand your online visibility and leverage new opportunities.

If you need help with EXPANDING YOUR ONLINE PRESENCE please contact us. We use every opportunity to help small businesses.