There are almost infinite ways to effectively market a website. But I’m going to talk you through a few of the most common ones!
First and foremost, just make sure that your URL is in as many places as you can reasonably put it. This includes business cards, email signatures, any signage you put out, social media bios, etc. Any time you publish something, make sure your URL is included.
Another great place to include the URL to your amazing website is the business directory of some professional associations. Are you a part of your local Chamber of Commerce? Are there any business groups you’re a part of? If you have joined a community, make sure your own listing in that directory has your web address clearly listed.
Something that I want to mention but isn’t directly marketing-related is domain-based email. A survey conducted by GoDaddy showed that about 75% of U.S. ecommerce customers think that having an email address that matches your website is an important factor in determining if a website is trustworthy. This means that if your email address is "firstname.lastname@example.org", 75% of U.S. ecommerce shoppers hesitate to trust your website. OUCH. In order to seem more like a trustworthy business, you need an email that is more like “email@example.com”. This has the added benefit of being one more way to get your URL out in the world.
Now let’s talk some more traditional digital marketing methods:
You can capture email addresses with a sign-up form on your website, and then send emails to that list on a regular cycle. Weekly, monthly, daily even. Whatever you decide, just make sure you are consistent, and you offer some actual content in your emails. Personally, I think sending teasers of blog content, and then linking back to your website makes an effective email campaign, as long as you blog consistently. Make sure your email contains your contact information and an easy way for people to unsubscribe.
Make sure your website is linked properly in all your social media bios. If you are putting your web address in captions, make sure you take it out before you post to Instagram. Instagram does not allow clickable links in captions. Make sure your link is in the designated spot in your bio, and direct your followers to that in your caption. Adding “Check the link in bio for more information” is a perfect way to direct people to your website in Instagram captions.
Google My Business:
Google My Business sort of straddles the line between social media and SEO. When you search for a business, and a little box of information about that business shows up with hours, location, and maybe some posts – that’s Google My Business. If you have a business, you need to claim your GMB listing and make sure it’s up to date. (We have an entire post about that). Also, you can post on Google My Business! I recommend posting to announce sales and events going on. But remember…keep this up to date! You don’t want the same post up in February that you used to advertise your Black Friday sale.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) typically means paying Google (or Bing, or whatever search engine) to list your website near the top for certain queries. Most of the time you pay per click, a cost which is determined by an auction of sorts. If you are the only one bidding on the keyword, the cost will be lower than if you are one of 1,000 people bidding for placement on that keyword. In all cases of SEM, you can set what you are willing to spend and place a cap so that you are not paying a higher fee than you are comfortable with. Usually location-specific keywords are going to be better and more cost-effective. “Web Developers Bellingham” is going to be a lot more cost-effective than “Web Developers”.
Search Engine Optimization means editing your website so that you show up organically in search engine results. Basically you’re following Google’s rules so you don’t have to pay them. Remember that where you are lacking in SEO, you’ll have to pay for in SEM. A few easy ways to make sure your website is SEO-friendly is to ensure that all your images have alt tags, and to make sure each of your pages have <h1>, <h2>, tags. If you don’t know what any of this means, you should probably pay a professional to look over your site. Read more information on SEO/SEM.
If marketing isn't your forte, and you want someone else to take over your marketing efforts, feel free to check out the marketing services we offer, and let us schedule a call with you to talk about how we can help grow your audience.