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Top-10-Ways-to-Promote-Your-Website-and-BusinessLearn the top 10 ways to promote your website, whether it’s a blog, web store, portfolio or company website. Promoting your website once it’s up can be very challenging, and is what most business or website owners fail at. It’s pretty easy to get a website up, but it’s another thing to promote and market your content effectively.

No matter how well you promote your website, and no matter how much money you put into it, you will still need to Have Great Content that people want to share. You’ve probably heard of the phrase, content is king, right? Well it’s still true and it’s what Google advises us to do as well. (See last tip on CMO).

Promoting Your Website

Here’s the top 10 ways to promote your website:

1) WORD OF MOUTH:
Telling people who may be interested in what you do. Notice I didn’t say “everyone“, because the truth of the matter is, not everyone is going to be interested in what your website is about, or what you do. But make sure you spread the word about your website to the people who ask and seem interested.

Email signature – Make sure that whenever you send an email, that you email signature includes your website URL, and any other links to your social networks. Make this your default email signature, so that you don’t have to type this out every time you send out an email.

Branding –
Have business cards, or other physical objects that you can give away, if that’s appropriate to what you are doing. Some people go as far as putting decals on their cars, which is all fine and dandy, if that floats your boat.

2) BLOGGING:
Blogging is a great way to promote your website because it’s search engine friendly, extremely organized, and it positions you to be an “expert” in what you do. It’s a way to educate, inspire and entertain people in a way that can get them to become one of your greatest fans, and buy your services or products.It’s also a way for people to trust you and what you do.This is the main reason I upgraded my website from a one-page static portfolio, to a living and breathing personal blog. I wanted to be able to share and teach others about what I do, as well as show off my portfolio and web skills.You can visit my original online portfolio here.

The advantages of a blog over not having one, is the potential to be favored in Google and other search engines. Google loves new, fresh content on your website, and having a blog that is updated frequently is by far one of the best way to get new visitors who are searching for websites like yours.

If you want to have a static page for your website home page, that’s fine too, and you can still have a blog within your site.Especially if you’re selling a product or service, you may want to show off what your company is about instead of having the most recent blog posts on the front page. Also, with WordPress, blogging is very easy to do and even easier to start. [ Related Article: What is WordPress – Full Explanation? ] Check out my full tutorial on how to start a website here. I’ll show you how to get a WordPress website installed in minutes, as well as what web hosting to get.

3) SOCIAL MEDIA:
It’s not enough nowadays to just have a website up. To really take advantage of the web and get the maximum amount of visitors and potential customers to your website, it’s vital that you share and connect through social networking.The main reason why you should consider joining at least a few of these social networks is so that you can become visible to the real world, and the truth is, they’re online sharing content. Also, you want to make sure that all your social networks drive people back to your website, which is the goal.

Facebook – By far one of the most important places to have an existence on, right now at least. Facebook has shaped social networking for the better ever since it started, even back in the days when it was just solely for Universities to communicate with each other. Now you can see all the famous celebrities, and not so famous people on Facebook sharing quotes, images, stories and websites.

My advice is to start a Facebook Fanpage. This is different from your Facebook account, in that this will allow you to gain an infinite amount (currently infinite) of fans without the need to “approve” each person. Also, it allows you to analyze user data and analytics for you fan page, as well as be seen by search engines such as Google.This is my #1 social platform in communicating with my fans and visitors, and it’s what I’m usually on anyways, aside from business.<https://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php>

Twitter – 140 characters or less may seem kind of short, but it’s the perfect way to send out a message that’s to the point. If you can master sending out a message in less then 140 characters, then you’re on the right track by saving people time!Twitter is great for updating your followers with your latest product, blog post or simply just a message that may help them in some way. It’s like having small talk with someone as opposed to a full blown conversation or blog post.

Vine is Twitter’s answer to video, and it’s a way to share a quick 6-second video loop. Do you use Vine for your website or business? If so, please share with us by commenting below.

LinkedIn – For professionals alike, this platform is great to promote your website to people in your niche or category. Just be sure to stay professional, as this platform is different than Facebook. My advise is to join groups on LinkedIn, that have to do with what you do or your industry. I’m in a few web design and development groups myself. Here you can network with others and share your skills.

Google Plus – Although I honestly haven’t spent too much time on my Google Plus, I would still say that this is a social platform that you should be in or at least consider. As Google is the #1 search engine out there, everything ties into Google Plus in some way or another. You can also have a Google Plus page (sort of like a Facebook fan page) but I personally have not done this yet, as I don’t want to overwhelm myself.

4) VIDEO MARKETING:
Along with social networking, video marketing is a great way to promote your website and business because people love videos. You want to cater to people who may want to watch instead of read, and you want people to connect your website and business to you, as a person. Seeing someone talk on video is far more effective than just reading what they wrote on a blog.

YouTube – The king of web video, this is the place you want to be in if you want to tap into the marketplace. YouTube is a search engine, and people will search here too. Having your video in this community is important.

I would recommend that if you’re going to post videos on YouTube, make sure that your video is less than 5 minutes, if possible. If you’re teaching something or streaming a webinar, then you can go over 5 minutes, but in general, people watch videos in bursts. The average length a visitor watches video on YouTube is about 1.5 minutes, according to the “SEO Podcast Unknown Secrets of Internet Marketing“, podcast episode 177 (Videos and how they effect SEO)

Facebook Videos – Along with posting on YouTube, why not post it on your Facebook fanpage as well? This is a tip I got from Amy Porterfield when she interviewed James Wedmore (a YouTube and Online Video Marketer) about video marketing on YouTube. He says, and I quote, “a video uploaded on Facebook has a 40% higher engagement rate, than a YouTube video shared inside of Faceook“. What he is saying is that although YouTube videos are great, statistically Facebook videos have a higher engagement rate and thus something to consider when posting video on the web! Amy then continues to talk about how she also posts her videos on Facebook in addition to YouTube.

5) PHOTO MARKETING:
People love to share photos, and if you can incorporate photo-sharing with your business model then you may be on your way to a photo-rich marketing plan. Here’s a few networks to consider if you want to share photos of your products, or services.

Instagram + Facebook – Posting pics on Instagram and then letting that app auto-post to your Facebook is a great way to promote your product and business. Remember, Instagram is owned by Facebook, so they favor Instagram photos as opposed to somewhere else.

pInterest – This is a great place to share images and very easy to share pins and pinboards.

6) PODCASTING (AUDIO MARKETING):
Podcasting is one of my favorite ways to promote my own website because it gives me a chance to talk about topics that people can listen to when they are away from the computer. Many people tune in to podcasts while they are driving, walking, and their daily commute, and it’s a great way for people to learn something on-the-go.

If you’re interested in podcasting, I want to introduce to you an epic and full tutorial on “How To Start a Podcast Show” with Pat Flynn. I highly recommend you follow his video tutorial on how to start a podcast, because this is exactly what I watched and carefully followed to produce my podcast, “Websites Made Easy“.

I also wanted to mention that Pat Flynn said that this was the #1 way his followers and visitors first found him, through his podcast, “The Smart Passive Income Podcast“. In fact, this is exactly how I found him over a year ago.

7) FORUM AND GUEST POSTING:
I want to mention that joining forums and commenting on people’s issues and problems (and helping them) is a great way to introduce yourself and spread the word about your website and business. But I want to warn you that spamming is not good, and most forums will ban you if you attempt to give out your URL without permission. Read the forum rules first and foremost.I am active in one forum right now, and I am still building my reputation so that I can eventually have a URL and signature in my footer whenever I comment on someone’s post. But it takes time and effort, but well worth it in the future.

Also, writing guest posts or blog post on another website is a great way to promote your website. Make sure to not be spammy or give away your URL in your post, because the website or blog owner may not allow that. Also, it’s highly advised that you only write your very best quality blog posts, to prove yourself and gain the trust of the blog owner and their readers.

8) EMAIL MARKETING:
The very best thing to have with your website is an email list. I can’t stress this enough, and what an email list will allow you to do is keep in touch with your followers on their terms, meaning in their personal email time. Someone who rarely visits your website will only see what they see, but they will always see their email. Get into their email box, and you’re in the right direction with promoting your website and business.

I’m on dozens of email lists, from web development to internet marketing email lists, and I basically skim through my email and only open which emails sound interesting to me, at the time. And in some cases, I respond to the author because they ask me a question or they ask for my opinion.One of the best ways for getting email addresses is by giving away something for free, like an e-book on your website, if the person joins your mailing list.

Aweber – A great paid service to use for your email marketing campaigns, and is the #1 email service used by bloggers. This is what I use currently.

Mailchimp – A free email marketing service similar to Aweber, but with some differences. I would say check both of them out on your own. This is what I used to have.

9) PAID ADVERTISING:
A fast but not-so-cheap way of getting visitors and potential customers to your website or blog is through paid advertising. You know, the link and text ads on the right of your Google Searches, and those interesting ads that you see while browsing Facebook.I have paid for advertisement before and really do see the jump in visits, and as I continue my blog(s) I intend to test out different ads to get better results.

Google Adwords – You can set a daily budget for your ad campaign that contains multiple versions of one type of ad, and you can use this to see which ads do better.

Facebook Ads – I like Facebook ads because it’s highly targeted and I can set a total budget for my ad campaigns for a specific amount of time. Also, you can pay to promote Facebook posts, and this can be helpful for those specific posts that you want many people to see. By default though, you may not get many organic views at all, unless you pay…

10) BASIC SEO:
Having good basic SEO techniques is crucial, and I’m not necessarily talking about doing anything complex. I’m just talking about having keywords throughout your content, having relevant links to other pages and creating a descriptive title for your blog posts.Whenever you post a video on YouTube, write a description and add URLS. When you write a blog post, create a title that people would actually search, and avoid being too cute or clever with it.
EXTRA TIP:  Use CMO – Content Marketing Optimization:
I got this from Alex Clifford of http://geeklesstech.com, Alex talks about how Google promotes and advises website owners to provide real, quality content instead of trying to use SEO tricks.Basically, this goes back to my first point, have great content that people would want to share. If you’re writing useless content and squeezing keywords into your post just to skew the search engine results, Google will eventually catch up to you and your tactics may not work in the future.

How To Measure Your Success

I would highly recommend adding analytics to your website, if you haven’t already, and what this will let you do is measure how much engagement you are having on your website, as well as how many people are visiting. Not only that, but you can drill down to where people came from, as far as what websites they found your link on, as well as what country they live in, what city, and how long they were on your site. It’s really a must-have, and I recommend Google Anayltics.

Other Ways of Promoting Your Website

Here are a few extra ways to promote your website, but I don’t fully condone these ways and don’t do them myself.

Directory and Search Engine Submission: You can submit your website to every search engine out there, but this is not totally necessary these days, even though it was very important back then. Now, Google does a great job at finding your website as long as you do basic SEO techniques and cane found in other places like social networking sites.

Automated Link Exchange and Link Baiting Systems: These systems usually is free where you can exchange your URL with others as long as you put their link on your website. Or you can pay for services that will auto generate links to your website, from other websites. But you may get banned from Google, and in general these are not long-term solutions to getting targeted website traffic. You don’t need thousands of visits if nobody buys your product, right? And just because you get a huge spike in traffic doesn’t mean it really counts, because if you get a million visitors that never come back, what have you gained? If Google bans your website, then what?

Have any more tips? What did I miss? Let me know by leaving a comment below!