Your organisation is up and running with a website. Assuming you’ve checked all the boxes on what makes a good website, what do you do next? In case you missed it you can review your website against our checklist here. The answer, of course, is: marketing. Gone are the days (if indeed, they ever were) of build it and they will come.
There are many ways of marketing your website – some better than others – and in this post we cover the basics and we look forward to bringing some more advanced ideas in future blog posts.
If you can measure it, you can manage it
If you don’t have this on your site already then go to www.google.co.za/analytics and follow the prompts to set up Analytics for your website. Amongst other things, Analytics will tell you how many visits your website is getting, how long each person is staying on your website, and which device they are using to browse your website. My personal favourite is the In-Page Analytic also known as Website Overlay which shows the clicks by percentage on different sections of your website. Aside from being able to use this information to guide future website updates, you will also have a way of determining if your marketing activities are having the desired effect of driving more traffic to your website.
This may seem a no-brainer but ensure your website address appears on all printed stationery, marketing material, and online listings. Set up your email signature to include a link to your website. Better yet, your email branding should be set up to link to different pages of your website – read our post about email branding to find out how email branding can be used to market your business.
List your website on local directories – you can start with the free ones. Look for directories related to your area or your industry and list your business on those, remembering to include your website address where ever possible. If your business has a physical location check to see that you are listed on Google Maps as this is really important to be found on local search.
Update the content on your website regularly – once every month at least. This is known as content marketing and includes activities such as writing blog posts, and – especially in the case of ecommerce websites – adding new products, product information, and product reviews. Then tell people about it by posting about it on your social media platforms. Try to use a visual in your social media post and posts with images are known to draw more engagement from people.
My personal favourite. Start off by creating a mailing list of the people you know – your clients and contacts in your sphere of influence. Select the platform that will work for you – there are many good ones such as Emma, MailChimp, Constant Contact, Everlytic to name a few. Create an email newsletter with content that would be interesting to your ideal client. Think about what they would find interesting about what you do and how the services you offer can benefit them. A word of advice here….when you are starting out the simpler you keep your newsletter the better. No large graphics to be sent out or PDF attachments as people are suspicious of attachments in commercial based mail and also won’t wait for your beautiful images to download before they can read your message. Email newsletters are a trade-off between being beautiful and functional. Some of our clients have received a really good response from plain old text email!
The ultimate in digital marketing is the ability to automate the marketing activities you find yourself repeating. In addition it is possible to proactively design responses based on your customer’s behaviour. Marketing Automation software will assist you greatly in automating the nurturing of leads as they move through your sales funnel.
All the above are necessary and they take a bit of time. If you want instant gratification you can consider Google Adwords to bring traffic to your website. Three hot tips when you use Adwords:
1) Ensure the page they click through to from your advert has a call to action – what do you want people to do once they land on your page. Sign up for a newsletter? Buy a product? Fill out an enquiry form?
2) Set a predefined budget and cap your spend per day so you don’t overspend or spend your budget all in one go!
3) Your advert must be relevant to the page you are clicking through to. Nothing rubs people up the wrong way more than when they read and advert, decide they are interested, click on it, and land on a page on your website which has nothing to do with what you said in the advert.
Read about the difference between SEO and Pay Per Click (also known as PPC) on our website.
Social Media such as LinkedIn and Facebook have grown their advertising offerings to assist marketers. We have seen a significant increase in traffic as a result of campaigns run on Facebook and LinkedIn.