The Internet never stands on a place. Thousands of high quality sites appearing every day. Creation of most of these sites pursues one global object – to sell goods and services. More than 80% of all commercial sites have never been promoted and have never spent extra money on promotion of the sale channel through the Internet. However, 20% of sites have to constantly compete with other sites and promote themselves. In conditions of healthy market competition expenses and cost of one visitor or conversion will always go up.
Among the main ways to attract the target audience to your site are the following ones:
- SEO (search engine optimisation);
- Contextual advertising;
- Media advertising;
- SMM (social media marketing).
Each of these methods has shown itself to good advantage while performing the main task of selling goods. However, the main goal of this article is not to provide you with information on alternative sources of target audience attraction. We will tell you about this all later. At first let us compare the main ways of attraction of the audience to a site.
Since we are going to promote specialized sites, the strategy of non-search promotion will be completely different from the work on online shops and news portals. For you to have a clear idea of the situation, figures, and tasks, let us analyze a simple example of a plant selling site.
Here is a brief sketch of the project and the pertinent methods of work on target audience attraction:
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The site is 6 years old. The indexing rate in the Google search engine is 95%. The domain is .com. This site is a representative of those clients who cannot stand still and, hence, are ready to push up sales, which calls forth constant development.
- SEO. The site’s semantic core embraces practically all existing requests. The site has come to the fore concerning most requests. At the same time, the content and the filling are aiming at attraction of the audience, admitting various target word combinations. This is the maximum which could be received from search engines within the limits of the budget.
- Contextual and media advertising pursue the highest possible involvement of the target audience.
- SMM. In fact it is fairly hard to think of the social component of development of a project selling equipment and machines. But even in this situation everything is well-considered so that potential clients are not lost and the already existing ones become more loyal.
Having described the situation of the major channels, we can see that all these channels are fully involved into the process. However, it is not recommended to stay motionless. We should always promote and develop projects – this will be discussed below.
Methods of Non-Search Promotion
One should first of all indicate right positioning, “In case our project does not enter the visibility zone of an interested user, we lose it rather than do not get it.” The below presented items belong to non-search promotion methods:
1. Article and news marketing
You can find multiple resources practically on any topic the target audience of which can intersect with yours. Displaying information about your company in these resources definitely has sense. These sites will be very often open for commercial articles placed by means of specialized services. If your information is of great value, there is a possibility that the administration of the resource will display it for free.
2. Creation of a professional community
Provide your visitors with a possibility to openly ask you questions. Organize a forum or a small blog where everyone will be able to suggest their own ideas and learn the news of the niche. You are the only person who perfectly knows all the technical issues concerning the equipment, goods, and services which you are producing or at least selling. It is very important that your visitors can ask and speak. Creation of a professional community will increase loyalty to the brand to the utmost as well as the constant traffic from bookmarks.
3. Creation and implementation of scientific and technical information of narrow specialization
Everyone has an experience of searching for some scientific documents, guides, drivers, or descriptions. It is not always easy to find the necessary information right away. In order to increase loyalty of visitors and the number of transfers from bookmarks and search engines it is necessary to actualize the scientific knowledge base on the topic of the resource. Concerning our example, we can set up a documentation base on installation and developed passports of all the sold plant. This may be referred to SEO, but you can also choose a great number of rivals, optimize your pages according to their brand and model requests, and present a minute comparison of your products. In most cases, while being transferred to your site, a visitor begins to think why s/he is not looking for your brand. The feedback index of such pages may be very high, but not at all zero. Part of the visitors will become your potential clients. You should either give people information which others do not possess or gather everything in one place – this will pay its way by increasing confidence in your brand as well as add-on-sales.
4. Site development
Most site owners believe that the index of the returning users which totals 7-10% is OK. It is not OK. You should give users reasons for visiting your site once again. This task can be performed with the help of virus marketing, shares, offers, and news. Integrated psychology and usability will show a splendid result. With the lapse of time, after a number of innovations, you will not be surprised by the 30-35%- index of regular visitors which is a 10-15% positive monthly dynamics of traffic.
5. Creation of a mailing list
As the previous item shows us, it is important to understand that a visitor who looked through more than 1 page of your site can return once again. You should arouse interest in a visitor and instantly grant him/her access to new, topical, and invaluable information.
6. Affiliate programmes
You should make it possible for others to earn money. If you have 20 items sold on your site, creation of an affiliate programme is out of question. It is enough just to write a decent offer for partners or web masters and there will be much more ideas on resource promotion than you can see here in this article. It happens pretty often that web masters and partners working for an affiliate programme make 80% of the total sales. You should merely give others an opportunity to earn money with you and for you.
7. Competition sponsorship
An item which says “Competition sponsorship” is fairly specific for the presented list, but it definitely must be here. Every year hundreds of competitions, conferences, exhibitions, and seminars are held in every sphere and subject area. Sponsorship will not only make you more noticeable, but will also fill up your traffic. Every case of sponsorship is specific and it is important to keep in mind the fact that there is always your potential audience present at every event – you should not let your money and time get wasted.
Conclusions and Efficiency Criteria
We would like to draw a short conclusion and make some parallels. The online business is completely different from the offline marketing, but it is still possible to project sectors of each sphere onto two various planes. This is one of the reasons why users, even being oblivious of the services and goods offered by you, are likely to make a decision to buy your good or add your site to their bookmarks on having seen the page. It is just like in a shopping mall: you never thought that you would buy this or that product. Today we live at the time of consumers and it is important to enter the visibility zone of potential clients by all permitted means with the help of the methods described above in our article.
There is no single rule of assessment of the efficiency of these methods. However, one can choose a simple way and resort to experiments and experience to evaluate the cost of every visit by this or that means. The main thing is that investment into development gets compensated. You are most likely to fail in the first month, but you should definitely try it.
This article might contain not very new information, but the mentioned methods are gathered together and are put in an understandable manner. It is food for thought, so to speak. We wish you luck and successful projects.