So, you’ve read everything you need to know about optimizing your search engine results, and have implemented as many of these techniques as you can. But, despite your effort, your site just isn’t thriving for some reason. It could be that your website is just… bad.
People are generally pretty selfish. If there’s nothing for them to gain by visiting your site, they probably won’t bother. Does your site provide interesting, accurate information? Is there something entertaining to read, see or listen to? If your site is strictly for sales or if it exists to help you accrue ad revenue, your audience needs at least one more reason to visit. Ask yourself, “If this weren’t my site, why would I ever come here?” Without any content, there’s nothing to keep an audience’s attention.
Okay, let’s say you have a wide variety of content, but is it good content? It’s shocking how many site owners don’t seem to mind putting up total garbage. These things should be obvious, but make sure your spelling and grammar are not just passable, but perfect. Errors in this area really hurt your credibility. Fact checking, including double and triple checking is essential. Finally, make sure your content is appealing. It’s not enough to write about popular subjects capably, but you also need to present these topics in a concise and entertaining way. Boring an audience will not keep them coming back.
Even if you have high quality, entertaining content, this still won’t help you if your audience cannot find it. Are the main areas of the site accessible from every single page, or do you force a user to backtrack to get back to the main page? Pages that are only accessible through following a series of links, rather than from one main hub will probably never get seen. Make sure everything is easy to find, no matter where on the site you are or else a user may find your site too frustrating to navigate.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but there are some general guidelines that every site should follow. Your choice of color scheme may make your text hard to read and most people won’t return if all they’re going to get is a headache. Spacing, orientation, and font size are also vital considerations. Too many tool bars, side bars or other gadgets can make your site too cluttered and make users uncertain as to what they should click in order to get to the information or article they need.
Before you even begin working on your marketing scheme, you need to ensure you have something worth marketing. First ensure that your site is worthwhile, next check that it’s easy to use and finally, that it’s pleasing to the eye. Only when all of these things are place should you even being to worry about marketing. Doing it the other way is putting the cart before the horse.