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In this issue:
"10 Tips To Increase Website Traffic by Terri Gray
Thought For The Day
A Note From Bizine.com

Feature Article:

10 Tips For Increasing Your Website Traffic
by Terri Gray, AustinWebDesign.com

Having a website is a great start to your marketing efforts. However, to make the best use of your website you need to advertise it in much the same way you would a physical location. You have to get the word out about your business website in order for people to find you. Below are some of the best free and low cost methods of building traffic and exposure for your website:

  1. Post Your Website Address. Remember to ALWAYS include your website address any where you have your phone number or mailing address. This includes: business card, yellow page ad, pens/pencils, newspaper ads, stationary, envelopes, mugs, magnets, brochures, answering machine message, signage, vehicle . . . etc.

  2. Google Adwords helps spur traffic quickly. Just login to: adwords.google.com and create an ad campaign. Google lets you bid on your keywords and you can set your daily and monthly ad limit. For example, you could set a $3/day with a $30/month spending budget. Make sure you target specific keywords for your local market.

  3. Start a Blog. You can create a Free blog at: blogger.com or wordpress.com Cross link your blog & your website. Use keyword rich content in your blog posts and link to your website within the content too.

  4. Submit Articles. Write and submit articles to the various Article Banks. Your articles should be approx. 300-500 words in length and be of interest to your target market. Be sure to include a brief bio and link to your website. Some article submission sites include: Digg.com, Ezinearticles.com, tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/article_announce and ideamarketers.com. Don't forget to also search for local businesses that may have newsletters or articles on their websites. You can offer your content for free inclusion in their publications, provided your brief bio and link to your site remain intact.

  5. Participate in Social Networking Sites & Online Communities. Add your website address to your profile on these sites. Ones to check out include: MySpace.com, Facebook.com, hi5.com, Xanga.com, linkedin.com, reunion.com, friendster.com, bebo.com, tagged.com, classmates.com, twitter.com, and Squidoo.com. Also post to other Message Boards, Forums & Blogs - Have a hobby or a special interest? Find local websites with forums, blogs etc. that you have an interest in. You can answer questions, post comments and leave your website address in the signature of your post. You can also check out sites like: answers.yahoo.com, home.ivillage.com/messageboards and local AOL boards.

  6. Advertise on CraigsList.org. Craigs List is free in most cities. Be sure to choose your category carefully, and don't spam the list. You don't want to be blacklisted or to have your posts removed. Read the rules and be responsible with your posts.

  7. Send out Newsletters. By sending out periodic email newsletters, you are reminding people of your services on a regular basis. You can encourage your readers to forward your newsletters to other people.

  8. Submit Press Releases. Keep in mind, that press releases should not be "ads" for your company. They need to have a news worthy angle to them. If you don't know how to write a good press release, you may want to outsource this for best results. Paid submission services: Prweb.com, PRNewswire.com, PR.com, and OpenPR.com. Free submission services: PrLog.org, BetaNews.com, I-Newswire.com and Free-Press-Release.com. You should also fax your press releases to local media as well.

  9. Contests and Drawings. Hold a contest or drawing on your website. This could be for a free dinner for 2 or a gift card at a local home improvement store. Cross link with the businesses that are providing the give-aways. Announce the contest/drawing on your blog, in your newsletter and through a press release.

  10. Exchange Links with Strategic Partners. Search for local merchants, Realtors etc. that you feel are targeting your same market. By exchanging links with them, you are creating a win-win for each of you.

Don't get overwhelmed with all of the opportunities there are to market yourself. Just start with a few things that look like they will be easy for you to do and then build in some time for yourself to incorporate them into your marketing plan. Add others as you go along and you'll be building targeted links to your site that will help generate a steady flow of traffic.

Food For Thought:

"People don't fail because they aim too high and miss, but because they aim too low and hit."
~ Les Brown

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