How many of you have seen the commercials, sign up now and get your free trial website? Or maybe a website offer that’s priced so low it’s irresistible? It sounds like a deal, and your chance to do something you’ve been thinking of doing it anyway for years, but had resisted thinking, I’ll wait till it’s safer to do this, and I won’t get taken. So why do we say there should be a sign out saying, buyers beware?
Because you need to look at the whole picture in detail, almost like a business plan. Yeah, it’s definitely safer going with mainstream companies like the ones that’s even been offered on television lately. But what you don’t realize is that there is a lot more to it to getting seen throughout the Internet than just putting together a website.
Let’s assume for a minute you get a good deal, or you know someone who can help you with your website. Putting one together is no longer difficult, especially with all the free open source software that’s available. If you don’t have help, and you’re just looking to buy something simple, remember you get what you pay for.
But it seems so irresistible! They say they’re giving you all the options, abilities, and exciting features, all for a low monthly fee. It sounds almost too good to be true, but yes they are!
Okay, so now you’re getting all this stuff. Yeah it looks like a lot of work to put together, and yeah you are going to spend a ton of time doing it without spending any more money, but that’s okay right! Sure it is, if you don’t mind all the hours it’s going to take. Just think, it’s your new hobby, so spending the time won’t seem so bad.
But in this world, time is money, so if you don’t mind putting in the time, you are fine.
So now you have your website and you are just waiting for everyone to find you, but not much happened. Why? Because now comes the hard part, getting web visibility, which means you want to be where people will find you.
Okay, doesn’t sound hard, and supposedly you are going to be where a lot of people are because you decided to follow through with setting up a site map for Google, and you made sure you tagged your images, added all meta information, wrote some great copy, and created a bunch of pages about all kinds of stuff.
So now you’re waiting for something to happen, and waiting some more, and still waiting more while beginning to get frustrated. Yet nothing has really happened. Why? Because no one sees you, that’s why.
No, you didn’t do anything wrong, it’s just no one has explained the rules of the game for web visibility to you. If they had, you probably won’t have spent your money, but whose fault is that. They gave you a deal, you just didn’t realize, way more has to happen to get the visibility.
You can take the typical shortcut approach most people take, and buy pay per click keywords. But, the buyer beware sign should be lit again. Why, because of these statistics.
If you have a standard one percent conversion rate, meaning out of one hundred people that visit you, one buys, and you paid one dollar for every click, you will pay one hundred dollars to get that one sale. Hopefully the item you are selling has more money than one hundred dollars of profit in it, or else you are losing money.
If you do better and have an above conversion rate of two percent, meaning out of one hundred people that visit you, two buy, and you paid one dollar for every click, you will pay one hundred dollars to get those two sales. This translates to costing you fifty dollars per order, so I hope you have that much profit, or else you are losing money again too.
Besides being frustrating, it’s expensive too, and can put you out of business faster than it even took you to get in. So, why does everyone do it then? Because instead of being a business sole marketing strategy, it’s considered a way to acquire a new customer, which everyone knows costs money anyway. It’s the business philosophy that it’s okay to lose money the first time you sell someone something. It’s all the repeat sales that make you the money. That’s why you see so many crazy deals. They’ll do anything to get you in the store, whether it’s on the web or into your local store.
So now what? Well, they say you need to pay for SEO services. Okay, yes, this is something that you need to do, but the smart approach if you don’t have the funds is to learn to do it yourself. Again, you’ll be burning up the hours building content; figuring out keywords, fixing your url strings, tagging images, and doing everything else that will help with page density. Finally you’re done and it’s back to waiting, and waiting again.
Now you are at the end of list of things they say you can do, so you list your products in different mega sites like Amazon, Sears marketplace, ebay, and other shopping sites. Some will have entry fees, but all will have you giving them a high percentage of every sale, and you will be at their mercy for visibility.
This leaves you with the thought that you can’t get over, I spent all this time and money, and it was for naught. Not true, consider yourself now an educated Internet participant.
So why the problem, because it goes back to following the rules of the game, which is to do what the search engines expect of you. If you don’t know that, whose fault is that? Obviously the providers who sell websites won’t tell you. In reality it’s not something they can help you with anyway.
So how do you help yourself?
It’s back to basics then, create a high page count using only unique content, use your data for a solution for an additional high page count and long tail searches, build you internal link count up as high as possible, and acquire a huge array of incoming links, that may need to be in the tens or hundreds of thousands.
Sounds tough, it is. It will take time, money and resources to accomplish this. But the reward only gets you in the game. The game now requires participation in social media successfully, another major hurdle to get over.
All in all, trying to get web visibility in a more and more complicated Internet world, makes you wonder why bother. That’s why more and more smaller companies are disappearing, while the big ones are beginning to completely dominant the game.
Still it can be fun, because it’s very rewarding to see people reacting for your benefit. It almost makes it worth it.
So happy soul searching on your next project.