It’s easy to set up a website nowadays. Whatever kind of business you have, a website will most likely be an important part of your marketing. Once you’ve got your website up and running there are a few simple yet powerful techniques to use that can make your website look better, attract more Internet traffic, more customers and make more online sales:

1. Have a clear headline. Head your home page with your business name and details of what you do. Visitors like to be reassured they’ve come to the right place as soon as they land.

2. Give good reasons why visitors should stay on your site. And make them clear… put them right there on your home page. For example, are your products/service the best? Do you have great prices? Are you a ‘guru’ in your subject?

3. Add a video. Or even several videos. Video is easy to do nowadays and it can make your website look a lot more professional. Useful videos with tips and ideas are good but even just a simple ‘welcome’ video can make all the difference.

4. Add some interesting and useful content. Even just a few ‘how to’ tips and articles around your subject are good. As well as being good for search engine optimisation they help make you look an authority on the subject.

5. Add some news if you can. Even if it’s just news about your product, or what’s going on in your business. This is a good way of keeping your visitors coming back for the latest goings on… and touching base with your business every time they do.

6. Add links to more information around your subject. This used to be the main method of search engine optimisation and, although it’s not as powerful as it used to be, they make your site look more comprehensive and more authoritative too.

But… take care not to add too many links, nor links to competing sites, as your customers could click away – and stay away!

7. Don’t have too many external ads. Having external advertising on your site (such as with Google AdSense and Amazon affiliates) can be a good way to help pay for it, but too many ads will make your site look too busy and could drive visitors away. So try to strike a balance.

8. Try to have a variety of online offers to tempt visitors to buy, or even just enquire. And keep changing them regularly. Internet buyers have come to expect offers when buying or browsing online. Even if they don’t buy there and then chances are they will come back again soon looking for the next offer.

9. Have clear contact details. For example, email address or contact form, telephone number and street address. Even if people prefer to shop online they still like to know that they are dealing with a real business and can phone or write to you if they need to.

10. Integrate with any other online presences you might have. For example, Twitter or Facebook accounts, or a blog. This is one of the best ways of generating traffic. All the best sites today are well integrated with the social media.

11. And, this is the most important tip of all, have some way of gathering email addresses from your visitors. Perhaps offer a discount voucher in return, or even an email newsletter. Once you’ve collected that information you can get in touch with them whenever you like.

For more information on Internet Marketing – including how to attract traffic to your site – you’ll find lots of useful articles and reports in our Online Opportunities Library.