The only 6 ways customers will find your site

Encouraging people to visit your site will require time and effort, but is worth the boost it will give to your business.

When you first got a website, did you expect to get a whole lot of visitors right away? If we’re honest, we probably all expected or at least hoped that would be the case. Of course, that’s not how it really works. Your customers will only visit your site if they know it exists, and if they know its address. There are a couple of ways you can help them find it, which is what we’ll explore below.

1. You'll tell them

Seriously, tell everyone you know (and some you don't) that you have a website, and they should visit it. But make sure it's worth their time. It will definitely help if the address is short and easy to say, like “”.

2. Your adverts

You can purchase and post ads in digital and in the real world. Every ad you place, whether it's on the radio, on TV, in a magazine or newspaper, or online, such as on Google or on Facebook, should point straight to your website. Ideally, it should point to a landing page on your website focussed on a particular product or service, since the Home page might be too generic and broad to keep them engaged.

3. Search engine optimisation (SEO)

This is the king of generating leads. When people search for "what you do" into search engines like Google, the websites that Google thinks are the most relevant, valuable, and authoritative will show up first. Is your website relevant to what what your customers are searching for (and where they are located)? Does it have valuable information for them? And most importantly, which other websites are linking to yours, proving that your site has authority?

4. Social media

This is your community. Where your customers voluntarily spend their free time. If they like what you do (products and services) enough, or if they like what you share enough (pictures, stories, articles, polls, etc.) they will want to follow your company; to stay in the loop. Whenever possible, point them to your website to take action on what you're sharing.

5. Email newsletters

Just like social media, anyone who signs up to receive your emails is part of your community; they're people who care, or at least are interested in what you do. They already receive hundreds of emails, so make sure everyone you send them is relevant, informative or entertaining, and most importantly, has links and buttons to allow them to take action.

6. Links / Referrals (from people you’ve worked with)

Firstly, if you're a small business, ask friends, family, and other people who know you to tell others about your business, and suggest they tell people about your site. Then for all your past / current / potential customers and clients, regularly ask them to refer anyone who might be a customer to you.

Notice that we didn't include "classifieds" or other listing sites? That's because hardly anyone uses those anymore - unless your market are the elderly, in which case this might be a viable option.

Pro tip: the easier your website address (called a domain name) is to remember (think - that's Google's parent company), the more likely people will try to type it in to find you after seeing an advert.

Some of these will take a lot of time to get right - especially SEO - while others are immediate - like ads. However you generally get what you pay for, or take the time to make. The more your customers care about what you do, the more visitors you’ll get to your site.

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