The Web Site Marketing Group

10 Ideas To Help Web Sites Thrive

By Mike Freedman

1. Use strategic planning and research to identify goals, objectives, audiences and messages. Original survey, focus group or usability studies can identify key issues and opportunities. Internet and library research can help focus marketing efforts.

2. Use Online Tools to Improve Sites. Check everything from Meta tags to accessibility to handicapped users and much more through online diagnostic tools available to web sites.

3. Build communications and communities. All thinking companies and organizations want to be in business for the long haul. Be part of the key online conversations that impact your company or industry.

4. Is your next best customer your next-door neighbor? You'll never know if you don't knock on that door. Many online neighborhoods have their own culture, etiquette and agenda. Participating in online communities builds support networks for you and your organization.

5. The Power of CRM #1 Customer Relationship Marketing. Building on existing strength by enhancing customer service is a key marketing step and the step most likely to improve web site bottom lines. From more detailed Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), enhanced e-mail communication and live chat, the more access and support you give customers, the more they'll buy. Customers that use CRM technologies tend to buy more than typical customers, and the more frequent the interactions the more likely customers are to buy.

6. The Power of CRM #2 Cause Related Marketing. Cause Related Marketing, the original CRM, can help position organizations as good citizens and help build real and valuable relationships. We all want to be about more than just making a buck. Given a choice between buying a similar product from two companies, if one supports a popular cause (and lets customers know this), most people will buy from the company that supports the cause.

7. Make every communication a work of art. Let your web site have a voice and a soul. Let the writing be human. Make it your masterpiece. Make every e-mail you send a work of art.

8. Test and tweak proactive marketing messages to optimize click-through. Compare ads, affiliates, text links - measure anything you can hyperlink. Test, test, test.

9. Test and tweak landing pages to optimize buy-through. Try different presentations to close the sale. Test variables to optimize and improve sell-through rates.

10. Advance the field of web site marketing by getting involved with efforts to enhance and expand professional learning and recognize competency. I urge you to join and support the eMarketing Association (EMA) and the International Internet Marketing Association (IIMA).