Online business is bigger than it ever has been, even during the booming days of the so-called "dot.com bubble". The wealth is spread more evenly than ever before as well, with thousands of people every day making a fortune from their websites with ideas and ways to do things that no one has ever thought of before (or at least never had the courage of their convictions). If you have a website, and a great idea, you may be wondering why this success has not come knocking on your door. The answer is in marketing. Website traffic doesn't happen automatically, and it rarely happens by accident.
The most profitable and successful websites got that way through a concerted effort on advertising and spreading the word. If you're not sure how to get started, here are a few things you can do to start driving traffic to your website. One of the most powerful tools any internet entrepreneur will put to use is search engine optimization. This is a fancy term for making your website attractive to Google and the like.
This means adding fresh and relevant content on a daily basis, using specific keywords to populate your content, and using a variety of tags in order to entice the "spiders" these search engines use to crawl the World Wide Web. Reams have been written on the ins and outs of search engine optimization. Your best bet is to visit message boards and forums dedicated to the subject and learn all you can. On the other hand, if you have plenty of money, you may want to consider hiring a firm to optimize your website for you.
If you want to advertise with little out of pocket cost, your best bet might be pay-per-click advertising. Have you ever typed in a search phrase and seen those results in the sidebar that say "sponsored search results". These ads are using pay-per-click advertising, and it can be a very effective way to get targeted traffic to your website. Ranking highly in the natural search engine rankings can be a difficult and arduous process, particularly if the keywords relevant to your website are highly competitive.
With pay-per-click, you simply bid on those keywords to ensure a good ranking on the first page of results. This type of advertising takes some tweaking and trail and error to find the right amount to spend per click, but once you nail down the science, it can be profitable. Of course, nothing will improve your search engine ranking faster than a ton of backlinks from higher ranking websites.
Of course, on the other hand, these links can be difficult to procure. Link exchange can work, but the jury is out on how effective this is. Links to your website without a return link are much more powerful, and an indication to the search engines that your website has merit and is an authority in whatever field your website is in. There are more ways to drive traffic to your website than there are websites on the internet. Try a bunch of different methods, and find out which ones work best for you. If you hit on one great way, it can all you need to shoot your website into the stratosphere and you could be the next dot.
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