Monday, October 01, 2007

Web Traffic Serenade


Traffic Equal Sales???

Everything being equal, more traffic to your website translates into more sales. Hence you read a lot lately about ways to generate more traffic to your website.

I'd like to begin by saying that more traffic does not necessarily equal more sales. Your website can attract tons of traffic for the freebies and if it is not conducive to making sales, you will probably not make more sales. Being conducive to more sales means offering quality, needed products at a good price, and making it easy to order these products. This point must always be kept in mind.

Everything is not usually equal - especially if you are offering the same affiliate products as everyone else. The one thing that distinguishes your site from all the others is the relationship you have with your site visitors. Given the chance to buy the same product from hundreds of sites, most people will buy from someone they know, trust, and feel some type of connection with. This is true for me and I am sure it is true for most of you. So part of your focus everyday must be on being responsive to customers reaching out to you. They reach out with questions, comments, requests for help, and other notes. If you are not responding promptly to these little notes you are missing a very big part of the picture.

Assuming you are busy building relationships with your current customer-base, then your next focus should be on attracting new visitors to your website. Techniques that have proven themselves to me include ezine ads, signature files, banner exchanges, links exchanges, notices on bulletin boards, news and discussion group postings and ezine articles. You should be using as many of these as practical.

Targeted ezine ads work great. However, you must constantly refine and test your ads. Change the headline and see what the difference in response rate is. It is a never-ending process of improving and refining. However, when you get an ad that works great, be very slow to change it.

Banner exchanges are the same - you must constantly work to improve your banner. A good attention grabbing banner with a compelling message will produce click-thrus. An animated banner will generally attract more attention, and with the right message will compel the reader to click on it. With banners - the old warning - no more than 2 banners per page. More than this will probably slow the page down and you won't benefit from the click- thrus since the surfer won't wait for your page to finish loading.

I also exchange a few links from time to time. After all - your visitor is going to eventually leave, so you may as well trade traffic with complimentary websites. Just make sure that the trade benefits both webmasters, and your visitors. Trading links with a disreputable or questionable site harms longterm customer relationships.

While on links, free-for-all links pages also produce traffic to your website although not the flood that many hope for. The key here is to post to as many sites as possible since it is a numbers game. For this reason, I recommend using automatic submission software or programs such as linkomatic. The drawback with posting to hundreds or thousands of free-for-all links pages is that many of them will send you an acknowledgement message. To handle this flood of email, I recommend having an email address that you use just for this purpose. That way, you can sort through these emails at your leisure. Some of them do contain worthwhile offers.

Posting to discussion groups and newsgroups pulls in some traffic too. The key is to offer helpful information and then a signature file with a compelling teaser. Vary your signature file until you find one that works. Think of your signature file just as you do any other headline. It should tell the customer what benefits he will gain from clicking through to your website.

The final method of driving traffic to your website that I will touch upon is writing ezine articles. It's no secret that a well-written ezine article establishes your experise and can generate many visits. Getting an article published in one of the larger ezines will generate hundreds of quality visitors. Many of these will bookmark your site and become repeat visitors. This is what you are really aiming for. Look for a topic that you do not feel is adequately explained. Do some research and write an article explaining it better. You have produced a very valuable article and your readers notice this. Readers notice the difference in the quality of articles, and hence your level of expertise.

Do all of the above things and your will increase traffic to your website. Keep in touch and work to build relationships with new and repeat visitors. Work to constantly refine your website and you should see a steady increase in sales. It is a process of gradually building up steam - while constantly improving.

Willie Crawford is a marketing consultant, promotion specialist and popular writer. His website contains over 180 articles on internet marketing as well as a very active discussion forum. Visit today and begin learning what really DOES work in building your business http://www.williecrawford.com.

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