I didn't study SEO in college.
I'm not an SEO expert, at least I would never tell anyone that I am.
I don't perform any black magic or tricks that will bring you millions of hits to your website.
But what I can tell you is this...
If you just put a bunch of time and energy into building an awesome website, yet no one visits it...
Then your awesome website, isn't actually awesome after all!
Calling Entrepreneurs and Small Business Leaders
We have all figured out that the internet is the ultimate leveler of the "Business Playing Field."
That is because with a little technical know how and not a whole lot of money, you can build a website that makes your basement operation look like GE.
In fact, you can probably make it look better because the visitors to your site can probably find there way around better than that of the fortune conglomerate sites.
Knowing all this, we fork over the cash to the "Website Developers," and right down to the content on the site we have them create the perfect online brochure.
The good news is, when your grandma visits the site she is going to be super impressed.
Even your employees will compliment you on how "Nice" your site looks.
And then all that effort will reach the pinnacle when you have 11 unique visits over the first week, 10 coming from relatives.
Perhaps I'm being a bit hard on your site, and for that I apologize.
So I'll sum it up quickly and say this...If you have an awesome site and no one visits it then the following must be recognized.
- Your site is not awesome (yet)
- You are doing it wrong (But this is correctable)
Start With Content
The jumping off point for the small business online is content.
Now that you have this amazing visual display of what your company does, getting more eyeballs on it starts by generating high quality content that shows thought leadership for your potential clientell and is set up in a way that is friendly for those good ole' search engines.
A site that is static and just explains your products and services is stale as quickly as it is produced.
What keeps it fresh and friendly in the "Webosphere" is going to be the ongoing pages created via the blog and the company news page.
Then it can be amplified quickly by growing a social community that shares your content readily, often and hopefully with people who will benefit most by what you have to say.
Build a Community
Content and Social Media without a community is kind of like yelling into a cave and hoping someone will hear you.
The subtle and worth noting nuance is that the content can be the jumping off point for building a community, whereas Social success is usually built more as a consequence of already having a community?
Does this make sense?
If not, think of it this way...
Through the creation of content that people will want to read, over time the building of this content will lead to people finding you.
Once they have confidence in your content and they believe what you offer is more valuable than "the norm" then they will amplify your content by reading, commenting and sharing. That by default becomes a community of people who read your posts, visit your social sites and engage with your content.
If you start out trying to get people to like your various Social Efforts, you will have limited success (beyond Grandma) and the efforts will not be sticky as people will visit and maybe even like your page, but without content it is a flash in the pan.
Make it Awesome
I always say...There is amazing complexity in simplicity. However, a simple and clean design outweighs a mess of content any day.
So if you have built a site with clean lines and a friendly face, then you are on your way.
But do not stop there!
The key to building traffic and more importantly conversions is going to be through a volume of visitors that are potential buyers for the product and/or services that you sell.
That means after you have your pretty site up and running. Start building content that your customers will want to read.
Then keep it flowing and engage and share with the networks that you are building.
When the site is as engaging as it looks, it is then, and only then, that your company's most valuable online real estate will become awesome!
Follow Daniel Newman on Twitter: www.twitter.com/danielnewmanuv