Marketing Your Website
Don't forget print materials or other marketing methods when thinking of ways to promote your website. Put your website address on every printed marketing product you produce. Announce it on each TV or radio advertisement.
Posting your website on the Internet is an important step, but without on- and off-line marketing of your website, you may only get very few visitors to your site. There are a variety of things you can and should do to help advertise your website, these are just a few examples.
One of the best, and sometimes the most difficult, ways to get your website noticed, is to have a lot of inbound links (links pointing to your website from other associated or related websites). If you have information that you think would be useful to another website, you might consider bringing this content to their attention and asking them to link to it. If you are affiliated with some organizations, professional associations, or donate to non-profits, ask them to link to your website. Sometimes, providing the words you would like them to use to link to your site and the URL of the page you would like them to link to, can be very helpful. The bottom line is, don't be afraid to ask, but don't send out generic emails to do the asking.
Online directories categorize pages according to content, making it easier for people to understand the associations and content on specific sites. Some directories charge for submission, while some are free. The turnaround time on directories varies, but usually this is an important step, especially for a new website. If your website addresses a specific field, there may be field-specific directories to consider as well. The quality of the directory is important, though. Adding your website to a directory that is composed mostly of poor content sites can actually hurt your site more than help.
There are many options for online advertising - banner ads, text ads, sponsoring websites, etc. One of the most popular options is Google Adwords. Their website provides a lot of detailed information about how it works. Yahoo Search Marketing is another option. It is important to check out the options, determine a budget, and then follow your ads closely.
A website can be a source for very detailed information about your products, services, or organization. You should put your web address on every other piece of marketing that you produce - business cards, brochures, radio advertisements, flyers, etc. Most print marketing materials have a limited amount of space for information. Providing your website address on this gives potential customers the opportunity to learn more about you without cluttering the printed piece.
A listing of marketing resources can be found on the Natural Resource Enterprises website at Mississippi State University.