|Dear Internet visitor,
Elena Fawkner's article on growing
your Work At Home Business has put me in the right
perspective in nurturing my own Internet Home Business.
Recommended for your reading.
Work at Home Business ... Doing The Right Things At The
Right Time And Doing Them Right
Once you get past the
initial utter confusion and "overwhelmingness"
of the scramble to learn how to start and run an online
business, the time eventually comes to dispense with the
training wheels and just get on with it.
A common trap for new
online entrepreneurs is to try and perfect their website
before inviting anyone to come over. It's true that you
shouldn't submit your site to the major search engines
and directories while your site's still truly under
construction but at some point you have to stop
developing and start marketing. Your site will NEVER be
finished and it will certainly never be perfect. If you
wait until it is before you start inviting guests,
you're going to be one very lonely webmaster indeed.
Working on your website
is fun. The visual results are immediate and, as a
result, the self-gratification you feel admiring your
handiwork becomes addictive. After all, it's a lot
easier to control how your site looks and works than it
is to actually drive traffic to it.
Because of this, and the
fun factor, there's a tendency to spend a
disproportionate amount of time dabbling with your site,
tweaking this and that and trying out new cgi scripts
when the time has long since passed when you should have
started working on driving traffic to your site already.
To make a success of any
business, including an online one, you must strive to
always be doing the right thing, the right way and at
the right time.
Because being disciplined
is so important to making the most of your time, I find
it helps if I commit to spending a certain period of
time every day to one or more of the marketing
activities listed below and getting it over with as
early in the day as possible. Then I can enjoy the
reward of spending time on areas of my business that I
find more enjoyable such as writing articles, and
sourcing new and interesting programs for my website
visitors. By getting the marketing chores out of the way
first, you can enjoy the rest of your day guilt-free.
(That's not to say that all marketing activities have to
be "chores". It's just that some are more
enjoyable than others.)
Be especially careful of
your time when it comes to email. This is another common
trap many online entrepreneurs get sucked into. It comes
in endlessly and builds up quickly. We are always so
conscious that it's sitting there waiting to be read and
responded to that it can become a major distraction. Try
to read and respond to your email in one or two sittings
at particular times of the day. And impose a time limit
too. This will force you to work more efficiently. (The
exception is email from customers who need your
assistance. You need to devote whatever time is
necessary to correcting the problem.) If you're not
disciplined when it comes to email you can quite easily
fritter away an entire day and another and another with
very little to show for it.
OK, so here's a list of
the top 15 things you should be doing to market your
online business once your site is ready for launch. You
don't have to do every one of these activities every
single day (although if you do your business will
certainly have a lot to show for it) but do strive to do
at least a few. The results will definitely be worth it.
1. Submit Your Main Pages
to the Search Engines
Once your site is
"ready" (bearing in mind what I said above),
your first job is to hand submit your main pages to the
major search engines.
(opinions differ) are:
Yahoo - http://www.yahoo.com
(fee) Alta Vista - http://www.altavista.com (free and
fee) Northern Light - http://www.northernlight.com
(free) Excite - http://www.excite.com (fee) Hotbot/Lycos
- http://hotbot.lycos.com (free) Looksmart - http://www.looksmart.com
(fee - get listed with Looksmart and your listing will
also appear at MSN, Excite, Alta Vista, iWon, Webcrawler
It takes anywhere from
several weeks to several months to get listed with some
of these engines so start early.
Then submit to the
"minors" (i.e. all the others).
for the latest news on the search engines and what you
can do to improve your rankings.
Automate the process of
search engine submissions as much as you can. The
program I recommend ahead of all others is Webposition
Gold. Check it out here: http://www.ahbbo.com/webpositiongold.html
2. Submit Your Home Page
There are literally
hundreds so this will be a time- consuming job. Aim for
ten per day and you'll make progress. Visit http://www.jimworld.com
for links to hundreds of directories.
3. Publish An Ezine
For information about how
to do that and generate subscribers, read "Growing
Your List" at http://www.ahbbo.com/growingyourlist.html
. If you're new to ezine publishing, an excellent
resource is List-Universe.com's Ezine University at
Try to write your own
original articles for publication in your ezine rather
than relying on other people to provide your content.
Make sure you have a sign
up form on every page of your website and a pop-up page
inviting visitors to subscribe. To see an example of
this in action, visit http://www.ahbbo.com.
Also, automate the
process of publicizing your ezine and submitting your
articles as much as possible. One excellent software
program that will do this for you (in fact the only one
I know of) is Ezine Announcer. Check it out here:
4. Negotiate Reciprocal
Find websites that target
the same demographic as your site and contact the
webmasters of those sites for a reciprocal link. (This
just means that each of you links to the other's site
from your links page or elsewhere else on your site.)
5. Submit to FFA Pages
Opinion is divided on the
effectiveness of FFA pages. Personally, I think they're
a waste of time. Others maintain that although they're
pretty useless in terms of people actually reading your
listing, they can be helpful with search engines that
rank your site according to popularity (i.e., by how
many other sites out there link to your site).
If you do decide to go
the FFA route, make sure you use a free email account
rather than your main email account. You will get a LOT
of rubbish mail in response. You want to be able to
delete it in one fell swoop without having to sort
through legitimate mail first.
6. Identify Commonly
Searched for Keywords and Create Doorway Pages to Submit
to the Search Engines
What's a doorway page?
Just a simple page targeting a particular keyword
tailored specifically for the search engine you're
submitting to. How to create and submit a doorway page?
You can do it manually if time is not an issue or you
can use search submission software like Webposition Gold
mentioned above (http://www.ahbbo.com/webpositiongold.html).
Webposition Gold also gives you all the information you
need about what the particular search engines look for
in order to rank pages well.
How to find commonly
searched for keywords? Use the Word Tracker service.
Dirt cheap but turns up excellent keywords. Click here
for info: http://www.ahbbo.com/wordtracker.html .
7. Write Articles and
Submit them where?
Directly to ezine publishers looking for quality content
for their publications, to article submission lists, to
article databases that exist for the express purpose of
providing other people content for their sites and
The ezine submitter
software I mentioned above can automate this process for
you and save you literally HOURS of time each week.
8. Remind Visitors to
Include a short note in
every issue of your ezine asking your readers to forward
your ezine to their friends and family, sign up for the
Recommend-It service at http://www.recommendit.com and
put the button on your site and the link in your ezine.
You get the idea. Word of mouth sells!
9. Monitor Your Search
Engine Rankings But Don't Obsess Over Them
Again, use software to
take care of the grunt work. Webposition Gold includes
And when I say don't
obsess, realize that search engines are only one source
of traffic. You will find that a LOT of traffic comes
from sources other than the search engines. Do the
things recommended here and you'll soon see that for
10. Negotiate Joint
Ventures and Co-Ops
Find people to joint
venture with - whether it be for ezine subscribers (you
each recommend the other's ezine on your "thank you
for subscribing" page) or bundle your products
together and each sell the bundled package. There is no
limit on the types of joint ventures and co-operatives
you can negotiate. Be creative and flexible.
11. Join Web Rings
12. Offline Promotion
Don't forget to promote
your online business offline. For more on this, read
"Offline Promotion Matters Too" at http://www.ahbbo.com/offline.html
13. Host a Forum
Host a forum at your site
and contribute to forum discussions. A lively forum (or
bulletin board) will keep visitors coming back for more.
14. Contribute to Other
Contribute to forum and
newsgroup discussions run by others to establish
yourself as an expert in your field.
Remember, these are not
platforms for blatant advertising. The most you can get
away with is a short signature file.
15. Create Your Own
Create your own e-book
with links to your products and services or your
affiliate programs and distribute it freely and
encourage others to do so too. This is what's known as
"viral" marketing - it spreads like wildfire.
The above activities
represent a lot of work and a serious investment of time
on your part. By no means are you expected to do each
and every one of these things from the get-go. Once you
have an established online presence, though, they do
represent a good range of activities that, pursued
regularly, diligently and consistently, with discipline
and patience, will truly grow your online business
exponentially ... and your profits right along with it.
are some good recommendation for those who want to start
up an Internet Home Business.
Six Figure Income Group
my group and start your own Internet Home Business
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