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Building a Web Site: Marketing Your Web Site

So, your web site is up and you're ready for people to look at it. Now what?

Below are some suggestions on how to market your web site. These may not apply to every web site, so pick and choose what you think will work best for you.

  1. Issue a press release and submit to relevant publications.
  2. Join a relevant newsgroup or forum and post an announcement. Include a link to your web site with every post you put up as part of your "signature."
  3. Email sites that are relevant to your site and offer to trade links - if they post a link to your web site, you'll post theirs. The more relevant the site, the more it'll help your search engine rankings.
  4. Run a print advertisement campaign. Get lots of postcards printed with your web site address and mail to everyone who might be interested.
  5. Integrate your web site address into your existing print materials, such as flyers, brochures, business cards, and letterhead.
  6. Purchase banner ads or other advertising space on relevant web sites.
  7. List your site in search engines and directories. See below for more information.

Search engine campaign

Search engine marketing is a whole other animal... and a while one at that! There are two facets of search engine marketing that you should be aware of: pay-per-click advertising and improving your search engine results. Unfortunately there is NO "easy way" of getting your site to be in the top results, so don't be fooled by the hundreds of emails that you'll get from companies claiming to do this. We don't consider ourselves experts in this area, but we have some advice that we can give:

  1. Define your keywords. The first thing you should do is to figure out what keywords you should focus on. This will help you with determining what kind of meta keyword tags to define and what pay-per-click keywords you should buy.
  2. Consider pay-per-click advertising. This is the quickest way to get results, but it may come at a price tag. Pay-per-click advertisements are the small ads that you see under "sponsored matches" at the top of Yahoo! searches or "sponsored links" in the right column of Google. The current high-profile pay-per-click advertising is usually done through Overture and Google.
  3. Invest in a Yahoo! listing. If done correctly, a Yahoo! listing is a great traffic builder and relevancy boost. The registration fee is expensive (about $299 at last count) and it can be difficult to get your site listed in the correct category. Another drawback is that the fee doesn't even guarantee that your site will be listed. Find out more at yahoo.com.
  4. Doing it yourself? Do yourself a favor! The Planet Ocean Communications Search Engine Newsletter helps you to stay on top of all the issues with search engine placement. It's less than $100 for their book, 6 months of newsletters, the 6 next revisions and updates for their book, and access to their archives.

There is also a helpful series of [free] articles at www.pixelmill.com/support/a_se_1.asp.

If you don't have time to deal with search engine placement, you may want to consider paying someone else to do it. You will want to BEWARE of the many emails that you'll get advertising "Top search engine results for $200!" Below are some possibilities - we haven't used any of them before, so do your research!

Next: Improving Your Skills

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