Let’s take a look at the content of the site and a strategy for improving it.
Good idea #14: A good story
Tell a good story. Many sites have outdated content and do not take full advantage of the search-engine optimization techniques recommended today by website experts. Those who have established the persona of their visitors, speak directly to the needs of those visitors, and update their content so that it tells a good, persona-sensitive story will also speak clearly to search engines.
Good idea #15: The big picture
Optimize images. File names of images used within a site should clearly define the subject matter and, when appropriate, include words from the site’s keyword/keyphrase list. Alternate (or Alt) tags are text displayed when the images will not load or are suppressed by the visitor and used by the search engines to understand the subject of the picture. Alt tags can further validate surrounding content when the alt tags use some of the same words. Software exists that can read alt tags aloud to the visually impaired in order to describe the subject of the picture.
Good idea #16: Exactly right.
Create targeted landing pages. Marketing campaigns should always direct the recipient to a page within the site that contains many or all of the same design elements and content as the campaign. These are called targeted landing pages. Sending all visitors to the home page will not provide information about the particular campaign that prompted the user to click. Targeted landing pages also foster visitor confidence that they are on the correct right page in order to take advantage of the offer. Analytics software will provide insight into which offers or messages work and which do not.
Good idea #17: Leave a trail
Promote your blog. Blogs can be used as a primary website or as a supporting site. Companies such as Technorati are dedicated to providing information about blogs and indexing their content so that visitors can easily find a blog on the topic of their choice.
Good idea #18: I’m just saying…
Become an authority. Most blogs allow visitors to comment on a topic. Commenting at other companies’ blogs of a similar focus enables the commenter to leave a trail of enticing information and links back to their own blog.
Good idea #19: You’re invited
Invite contributions. Search engines are most often used to rank sites but also rank people with recognition for knowledge and authority on a topic. Invite recognized authors to contribute to content or offer to purchase or license content that is congruent with the site’s focus. This recognized, authoritative content often will elevate a site’s ranking.
Good idea #20: Share and share alike
Identify cross-linking opportunities. Contributing to other sites that will quote the source is beneficial in building a link campaign. As an author of content posted at other sites, always include a short author bio with appropriate and well-structured inbound links to your site. If the content is relevant to your site’s visitors as well, create outbound links to the sites where the content has been posted.
Good idea #21: Tell everyone!
Encourage reviews. Review sites abound — both locally and globally. Dex Knows, Yelp!, Angie’s List, and others enable customers to review products and services from restaurants to plumbers and from cars to printing, and much more. Links from a website to the online-reviewing sites provide opportunities for customers to brag or complain. Complaints allow companies a chance to interact with unhappy customers and take immediate steps to rectify a situation, whereas positive comments can drive sales and boost customer confidence.
Good idea #22: Be social
Promote social contributions. Social-media participation enables a company to interact with prospects and customers in an environment cultivated for sharing. Links to the accounts should be prominent in the company website and in all online and offline marketing campaigns.
Good idea #23: Hey! It’s me…
Track inbound calls. Prospects who phone after visiting a website can be effectively tracked through a dedicated phone number posted only at the website. The monthly billing statement provides information about the number of calls driven by the website to that number.
Good idea #24: Breaking news.
Keep the site current. Websites with aged content typically rank lower in search-engine results. Pressrooms provide an area within the website where a webmaster can easily and continually add relevant, current content. Press-release distribution further capitalizes on this effort and typically provides separate analytics tracking for viewing click-thrus.
Good idea #25: We’re so proud!
Feature testimonials prominently. Survey results, review sites, and follow-up calls can be used to collect positive comments and testimonials from customers. Testimonial requests accompanied by permissions to use will provide a webmaster and marketing department with confidence-instilling text for use throughout a site and campaigns.
Good idea #26: You gotta see this!
Be seen. YouTube is typically the second most-popular search engine, ranking directly behind Google in number of searches. Posting video content about a company, its executives, and products is an effective method for driving traffic and educating prospects as they are guided down the path to purchase.
Good idea #27: Download.
Create downloadable resources. Posting content such as whitepapers, surveys, datasheets, and tip sheets can establish a site as an authority on a topic in addition to providing a path for capturing subscriber information. These resources can often be created in-house, thus keeping costs at a minimum. Promoting downloads and tracking activity with analytics software makes downloadable resources an easy, inexpensive path to improving site performance.