There is a lot that can be cone without any expense when advertising a business online.
Perhaps one of the main thoughts that puts many of us off advertising a business online is the expense associated with it. We are all aware how expensive even short TV ads are. Placing even a small ad in a local paper can become costly if ran over a long period of time too. In the online world there is a variety of ways to advertise. Some ads pop up on our screens, others are apparent on most Web sites, some you read, some you watch and listen to, and some take you to another site. In this article only free forms of advertising will be touched upon.
As can be expected in the physical world, as well as online, certain ads are more powerful, than others. The reasons for these are in some instances patently clear, and sometimes not so obvious. When an online business is started with a limited budget, it is natural to begin with fairly basic forms of advertising. The simplest way to do so is to include a four to six line ad for your business in an e-mail signature. You can choose to include this in every e-mail you send. To increase its effectiveness you could offer an incentive, such as a free e-book or a video to encourage visitors to go to your site.
Another simple way is to include a Tell-A-Friend feature on your Web site. If your content is viewed as good by others, they will happily recommend it onwards. Those who have been recommended a certain Web site, blog, or other, are less hesitant to visit them. A bribe, i.e. an incentive, giving them something for free gives a good reason to do so.
Classified Ads are another way to attract traffic. Visitors to these sites are already looking for what you are offering, and in many cases they are ready to buy. There are many of these sites and it can become rather tedious to keep placing ads on them, as they expire after a few days. In addition you also want your ad to appear as high up the list as possible. It is a good idea to get used to classified ads, as they do produce traffic. However due to their time-consuming nature, there are other forms of free advertising which are more effective with regards to the effort invested in them.
SEO or Search Engine Optimization is what you should logically pour a lot of hours into. When done properly and consistently you can end up on the first page of Google without any financial investment. If you consider the fact that 80% of people do not look further than the first page of their search results, this is definitely worth investing in. Free traffic is a goldmine. Apart from that, SEO is a component of most other forms of advertising. You should even consider looking into SEO before deciding how or what to name your business. Getting familiar with SEO sooner than later in your online marketing career will pay dividends.
Article marketing is a good way forward especially if you have some information to share and know how to put this down on paper in an interesting and clear manner. The more intriguing this piece of writing is, the more likely it is that it will be added as content to various Web sites. Greater exposure can be achieved by article syndication, i.e. posting an article to several article marketing sites.
Press Relapses are a great way to promote your Web site, and so increase traffic to it. Writing them will take some practice and getting used to if this is something you have not done before. It is worth the effort, as press releases can remain on the Internet for years.
At the time of writing this, videos are all the rage. Again they are a great off-page SEO technique. Uploading a video to YouTube with your URL gives you a link pointing to your Web site from a page rank nine site. Admittedly it can take a few hours to get to grips with how to go about making them and getting hold of all the required software, graphics, etc. After the production of a couple of videos it becomes a lot easier. The only remaining challenge is content. Aim to make it as high in quality as you can and include valuable information in order to attract traffic to your Web site.
Reality style videos need not take long to make, however you will need a video camera. If you are new to this, practise until you feel comfortable and appear natural to the rest of the world. It is well worth remembering that first impressions have a long-lasting effect. A messy background, a dishevelled look, unsavoury use of any language, unclear audio, and other distractions should all be avoided. A good video can get lots of views, and this can happen in a short period of time. The faster you establish a good reputation in your niche, the more frequently your video will get viewed.
Social Networking is another area of online advertising that has climbed to new heights in no time at all. We have all heard of Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace. There are countless others. Signing up with them enables you to have your URL in your profile.
The main reason to have a Web site is to promote a business be it a product/s, a service, or both. Like customers in a shop, visitors are the lifeblood of an online business. In order for the visitors to find our virtual shop we need to take steps to make it easier for them. This is where advertising comes in. To get organic traffic, SEO needs to be fully employed and put in place – the best possible way forward. In addition there are several other free ways of advertising a business online that will keep your Web site busy with visitors, and potential customers.