Every serious website that is trying to attract new customer leads, newsletter subscribers, or generate sales simply has to have a reliable online marketing strategy to succeed. When a site is created, it will not automatically receive traffic. Online marketing allows sites to bring in targeted traffic that is interested in their niche, company, products, or services.
How to choose an online marketing strategy
There are actually hundreds or even thousands of different internet marketing strategies, so how can anyone choose a single strategy that will work best for them? A decent majority of them actually work, although some are better than others.
The truth is that a website can really benefit from having a marketing strategy that actually consists of a variety of methods. The internet is so vast that there isn’t one single way that a business can market their website and get exposure to everyone. By utilizing a variety of different strategies, a site is really only limited in their traffic by how much time and effort they can devote to online marketing.
Most people think that it costs a lot of money to perform online marketing campaigns. While this can be true for a lot of strategies, there are actually just as many that are completely free. As a result, individuals as well as businesses can successfully market a website. The downside is that extensive campaigns can really require a decent amount of time and effort to execute, so the results are usually limited by the manpower available to a website.
Search engine marketing
One of the most common and effective internet marketing strategies involves search engines. This can be done both with or without an advertising budget. When a business pays for search engine marketing, it can be expensive, but the results can be faster and require much less effort. Since Google is the busiest of all internet search engines, it is typically the first choice for sites looking for both free and paid search engine traffic.
Search engine optimization is the process of optimizing the content, structure, and exposure of a site on the internet to gain better rankings in organic search results through on-page and off-page SEO. Since a lot of people will do some online research before they make a purchase, getting listed in a top ten search engine position for a good keyword phrase is the perfect place to intercept a consumer to convince them to buy a particular product right away.
However, the actual process of optimizing a website for better search engine rankings can be a very complicated and involved strategy to master. In addition, changes in search engine algorithms can suddenly make a site lose its hard-earned rankings. Still, if white hat SEO techniques are followed, a legitimate site will generally move up in search engine results, and there are a lot of simple techniques that complete beginners will be able to use that will make a major impact.
With paid traffic through PPC, exposure is instant and search engine algorithms do not apply, and there is less that needs to be learned. The obvious drawback is that every visitor needs to be paid for. Businesses will often use a combination of both SEO and PPC strategies. PPC can bring in some of the traffic that is not so easy to capture with SEO, but it needs to be carefully monitored to ensure that more is not spent on this advertising than is generated in sales.
Viral and social media marketing
Another method that is vital to the success of almost any online marketing strategy today is the use of social network marketing (with services to include Facebook, Google Plus and Twitter), social bookmarking and creating social buzz, and viral marketing. Literally, any website can benefit from having an active presence on a social media site.
The main difference between this strategy and other strategies it the fact that members of social media sites are generally driven by content that is being shared among friends. For this reason, it is essential that businesses using social networks have some type of involvement on the site that others will find useful or helpful in some manner.
By interacting with members of a social community, a business can build a lot of loyalty that can easily boost sales and recurring customers. With ever increasing competition in almost any market, this type of business to customer connection is vital to both growth and long-term success.
There are really a variety of ways to attract new customers within these communities. Web contests are one excellent way to spark a viral marketing campaign that can be executed with relatively low costs compared to the benefits. When these campaigns are carried out properly, they can bring in hundreds or thousands of new leads with a small amount of effort.
In addition to being able to use social media as a great online marketing strategy to bring more exposure to a company, it is also a good way to bring authority to sites as search engines are increasingly taking mentions and followers on social media into account when ranking sites.
As technology has become more advanced over the years, people are more inclined to pay attention to video-based information compared with written information. As a result, video marketing has become an extremely important strategy for many marketers.
With video marketing, businesses can produce a variety of videos that provide tutorials on how to use their products or other types of informational videos that are useful to viewers. These videos can actually be made with common video equipment, making it a very cost effective method of marketing that can provide some amazing results.
The real key to video marketing is to be subtle with advertisements while giving viewers something useful or helpful that they actually want to watch. This can result in viral marketing of videos from people sharing it with their friends and family. These videos can also get embedded in other websites or included in search engine rankings, giving marketers even more opportunities to capture new website traffic, leads, and customers from this strategy.
Email marketing is a very common and effective method of marketing when done properly. As covered in email marketing tips, starting an email marketing newsletter is a very good way to go about this. It is first necessary to start with opt in email marketing and then create the newsletter as explained in html email marketing. In addition, you can simply utilize email marketing services.
Various online marketing strategies
The following are different strategies to consider that will not be discussed here, but can be studied by following the links.
Any company or website can join one of a variety of affiliate networks to allow others to market and sell their products to receive a percentage of the sale as a commission.
Many of these affiliate networks are completely free or cheap to join to list products or services that can be promoted. The advertiser gets to control what people can promote their products, how they can promote them, and how much money they will make for referring sales. The affiliate network gives an advertiser some free exposure to attract new affiliates, although it can be difficult for beginners to attract some of the super affiliates that are capable of generating a large amount of traffic and sales in a short period of time.
Since a lot of businesses and even individuals utilize affiliate networks to increase their sales, it is also a popular way to make money online. This means marketers can build websites and entire businesses that are solely centered around selling products and services for other companies, which makes it extremely appealing to people who prefer to concentrate on-site building and traffic generation instead of direct sales, customer service, or shipping goods to consumers.
The following guide to affiliate programs covers some of the different possibilities in affiliate marketing. Keep in mind that physical products are generally easier to sell be digital products offer the highest commissions.