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7 Tips For Bringing Your Online Store To Your Customers

“I’m amazed at this! I put very little effort into this online business, and already I’m making over $14000 a month!”

We’ve all heard these testimonials in ads for “starting your online business”. We are offered a “turnkey” website already designed and filled with widgets to sell on the web.

The ads lead us to believe that hordes of customers will flock to our site, wallets in hand, ready to avoid the downtown mobs. We’re promised an overnight fortune with little or no effort. We purchase the site and set up the store, only to find that reality falls well short of expectations.

THE "SNAFU" OF ONLINE MARKETING

Perhaps one of the greatest disappointments for the novice online marketer is to discover that the effort she has put into designing and publishing a monetizing website may very well be wasted because no one comes to it.

In the real world (as compared to the virtual one), a business is generally set up by first renting space (hopefully in an area with heavy traffic, such as a shopping mall or on main street) designing and setting up the store, filling it with inventory, displaying the merchandise, and advertising to bring in customers with wallets ready to buy.

While location is important, most effort is directed at bringing the customers to the site, not the other way around.

In the virtual world, however, one has to bring the website to the customer. Every potential customer sits in front of the same computer – essentially the same physical location for Video">ALL businesses on the web.

The business that can effectively bring itself to that customer will succeed. Video">ALL">All others will fail.

7 WAYS TO BRING THE STORE TO THE CUSTOMER

Let’s say you do a search for a Google keyword such as “luggage”. You’re likely to come up with tens of thousands, if not millions, of potential websites, some selling luggage, others giving product reviews.

Will your site be among the ones Google or Yahoo finds? Not too likely, and if your site doesn’t appear in the top 10 or 20, on page one or two, the potential customer is not likely to go to page 3. Expecting her to find your site on page 150 is pretty much out of the question. She simply isn’t going to go there to find your store.

Consequently you MUST bring it up in the search ranks…to her, where she is sitting, in front of the computer.

RANKING YOUR SITE

Today, most people are finding what they are searching for using Google.

Google ranks your site primarily by how many links are located on other sites pointing to it, and the context in which your link is found. For example, if your site is about dogs, and your link is found in the context of dogs, that link will be more valuable than if it is found in some other context or in no context.

Bringing your store to your customers by improving your rankings requires a few techniques, and a lot of hard work. Here are seven suggestions for methods that are not “Catch-22”, i.e. don’t require traffic to get traffic.

1. Writing and marketing articles.

Google and other search engines rank a website by how many “one way” links point to it from other sites. Writing an article and publishing it in the many ezine barns (and having it picked up by online ezines specialized for your keywords) is an excellent way to get these one way links

2. Reciprocal linking.

Find other websites with similar subject matter to your own. Contact the webmaster and arrange to post a link to your site in exchange for reciprocating -- posting a link to theirs on your site.

3. One way links.

Do a search on your keyword and “add URL” or “add your site.” You will find sites you can add your link to.

4. Join a forum.

You can get banned by putting a link to your site in your posts, but if you put it in your bio and then post information frequently on the forum, you can go up in Google rankings.

5. Blogging.

Set up your own blogs with links to your sites to gain Google rank Software exists to do this.

6. Search Engine Optimization

Make your site “keyword rich” by including a written introduction with searchable keywords in it, optimize the site and submit it to the minor search engines. Software exists to help you with search engine optimization. Google analyzes rankings in minor search engines when assigning site rank.

7. Advertising with Google Adwords.

Adwords can put your site in front of the customer – on the right side of the search page, not on the left. People read from left to right, and will see the results of their search on the left first. Depending on your bid for the keywords, your ad may appear at the bottom of a stack of Adwords advertisements. Adwords can bring in sales, but costs can get out of hand and ultimately be disastrous.

WORK SMART...AND HARD

Ninety five percent of all Internet businesses fail. Articles have been written simply stating that this is due to lack of “hard work” on the part of the owner, who thought she was going to have a “turn key” business that would immediately reap “astounding profits”.

While this may be true, there’s an old saying, “Work smart, not hard”. In the case of an Internet business, you are going to have do both. You are going to have to work smart by knowing the most effective means of bringing your store to your customers, and work hard…

By doing it.

Submitted by:

John Young

John Young is a writer and editor living in Santa Barbara. He is inviting submissions to his new ezine, Explode Your Affiliate Checks at http://www.explodeyouraffiliatechecks.comdevoted to all phases of online marketing. He has a second site http://www.ebook-marketing-software.com




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