Most small business owners are lost when it comes to the web and how to create new business from their website. Here are the “MUST HAVE” elements that will help your site get listed, get found, get you new clients, and help retain the ones you have.
With billions of LOCAL searches being performed online each month, the Internet has officially surpassed the printed Yellow Pages book, newspapers, and other traditional marketing methods when it comes to overall effectiveness.
Online marketing has even gone beyond the computer… mobile phone Internet usage is also growing at incredible rates.
A good website starts with a good domain name. LJSPMA.com is not a good domain name. No one is searching for LJSPMA.com
When people search for someone in your small business or professional practice in your area, they will type in, “practice + your area,” as in, “attorney clearwater, fl.”
You want to get as many domain names as you can that will include your profession and your area. For instance, secure “ManhattanMartialArts.com, “NewYorkCityMartialArts.com,”NYCMartialArts.com,” MartialArtsNYC.com,” etcetera.
You also want easy-to-remember domains like KidsMartialArts.com or FunMartialArts.com. You can create different sites for different areas of practice or forward them all to your main site. Another ad- vantage is that by snapping them up you keep the good domains away from your competitors.
What If It’s Taken?
If someone already has AtlantaMartialArts.com, go for MartialArtsAtlanta. com and AtlantaMartialArtsry.com, MartialArtsinAtlanta.com and every other variation. You can point all of them to your main website, but, more importantly, you keep those names out of your competitors’ hands.
The landing page is where your visitor lands after clicking a link to your site. A landing is usually also the home page, but for differ- ent campaigns and offers, you may have a landing page that is not your home page. For our purposes, home page and landing page are the same.
You also need a mobile landing page. We’ll touch on this more a little below.
A good website engages a visitor and instantly communicates what a visitor can learn, get, or find out about on the site. It offers the visitor more information in the form of a free report, video course, downloadable book in exchange for the visitors’ first name and email address.
Email marketing is one of the most powerful and cost-effective marketing tools that a business can use to connect with customers and prospects through their website.
By using an email Autoresponder system, you can stay in front of existing customers and prospects on complete auto-pilot. Every business wants to connect with local consumers without spending a ton of money in advertising. Email Marketing will allow you to do just that.
Giving away a free gift in exchange for email addresses works better than any other method for creating a relationship with a visitor.
Visitors are more apt to give you their email if they get some- thing in return. However, whatever you decide to give them must be valuable and something they would benefit from. Make sure it’s enticing enough to make them leave their email address to get it.
Your Autoresponder opt-in box on your site will be responsible for collecting email addresses, but you must have a way to entice your visitors.
You can offer things such as:
Discounts and Coupons
Most businesses sell products and services that benefit from the use of coupons. Everyone wants to save money these days so of- fering a discount or coupon could prove to be very powerful for building a list.
A lot of people are online searching for solutions to a problem or need that they have. Free reports are the perfect way to give them the information that will solve their problem or fulfill their need.
Free Video Guides
Video is quickly becoming one of the most powerful marketing methods online today. Many people would rather watch a video than read an e-book, so you should definitely cater to this market.
Free “How-To” Tutorials
Tutorials are an excellent way to build an email list. This is because a tutorial provides a LOT of value to subscribers who are looking for a solution to a problem.
Emailing Your List
One of the key mindsets of marketing without marketing is to “Give before you ask.” Email marketing uses this exact strategy. Once you start building your list, it’s time to connect, educate and “soft-sell” to them by providing them with valuable information.
This could be things such as newsletters on topics of interest, “how-to” tutorials, etc.
Coupons and promotions should be worked in – do not bombard your list with hard-selling methods. The most important aspect of email marketing is “relationship-building.”
Use email to get familiar with your list and to allow them to get to know you.
People buy from those they know, like, and trust – this is a known fact. Establishing a relationship is one of the most profitable things you can do to get a strong connection with local prospects.
Whatever you do, just be sure to provide your list with valuable information and don’t bombard them with promotional offers.
Also be somewhat conservative about how often you send emails – there is a such thing as “too many emails” when it comes to email marketing.
Don’t hit your subscribers with constant emails because this will reduce the perceived value of being a part of your list. Once the value is gone, people will quickly opt-out.
Instead, only send out emails periodically and this could vary depending on the nature of your business.
However, in most cases, just sending one email per week – or even two emails per month is more than enough to build a strong connection with your list.