Sitemap and its Importance

A sitemap is often considered redundant in the process of building a website, and that is indeed the fact if you made a sitemap for the sake of having one. By highlighting the importance of having a well constructed sitemap, you will be able to tailor your own sitemap to suit your own needs.

1) Navigation purposes

A sitemap literally acts as a map of your site. If your visitors browses your site and gets lost between the thousands of pages on your site, they can always refer to your sitemap to see where they are, and navigate through your pages with the utmost ease.

2) Conveying your site’s theme

When your visitors load up your sitemap, they will get the gist of your site within a very short amount of time. There is no need to get the “big picture” of your site by reading through each page, and by doing that you will be saving your visitors’ time.

3) Site optimization purposes

When you create a sitemap, you are actually creating a single page which contains links to every single page on your site. Imagine what happens when search engine robots hit this page — they will follow the links on the sitemap and naturally every single page of your site gets indexed by search engines! It is also for this purpose that a link to the sitemap has to be placed prominently on the front page of your website.

4) Organization and relevance

A sitemap enables you to have a complete bird’s eye view of your site structure, and whenever you need to add new content or new sections, you will be able to take the existing hierarchy into consideration just by glancing at the sitemap. As a result, you will have a perfectly organized site with everything sorted according to their relevance.

From the above reasons, it is most important to implement a sitemap for website projects with a considerable size. Through this way, you will be able to keep your website easily accesible and neatly organized for everyone.

Good Web Design Practices

Your website is where your business resides — it’s like the headquarter of an off line company. Hence, it is important to practice good design principles to make sure your site reaches out to the maximum number of visitors and sells to as many people as possible.

Make sure you have clear directions on the navigation of your website. The navigation menu should be uncluttered and concise so that visitors know how to navigate around your website without confusion.

Reduce the number of images on your website. They make your site load very slowly and more often than not they are very unnecessary. If you think any image is essential on your site, make sure you optimize them using image editing programs so that they have a minimum file size.

Keep your text paragraphs at a reasonable length. If a paragraph is too long, you should split it into separate paragraphs so that the text blocks will not be too big. This is important because a block of text that is too large will deter visitors from reading your content.

Make sure your website complies to web standards at www.w3.org and make sure they are cross-browser compatible. If your website looks great in Internet Explorer but breaks horribly in Firefox and Opera, you will lose out on a lot of prospective visitors.

Avoid using scripting languages on your site unless it is absolutely necessary. Use scripting languages to handle or manipulate data, not to create visual effects on your website. Heavy scripts will slow down the loading time of your site and even crash some browsers. Also, scripts are not supported across all browsers, so some visitors might miss important information because of that.

Use CSS to style your page content because they save alot of work by styling all elements on your website in one go.

Some Ways to Keep Web Visitors Coming Back

A lot of successful websites depend on returning visitors to account for a major part of their traffic. Returning visitors are easier to convert into paying customers because the more often they return to a site, the more trust they have in that site. The credibility issue just melts away. Hence, keep your visitors coming back to your site with the following methods:

1) Start a forum, chatroom or shoutbox

When you start a forum, chatroom or shoutbox, you are providing your visitors a place to voice their opinions and interact with their peers — all of them are visitors of your site. As conversations build up, a sense of community will also follow and your visitors will come back to your site almost religiously every day.

2) Start a web log (blog)

Keep an online journal, or more commonly known as a blog, on your site and keep it updated with latest news about yourself. Human beings are curious creatures and they will keep their eyes glued to the monitor if you post fresh news frequently. You will also build up your credibility as you are proving to them that there is also a real life person behind the website.

3) Carry out polls or surveys

Polls and surveys are other forms of interaction that you should definitely consider adding to your site. They provide a quick way for visitors to voice their opinions and to get involved in your website. Be sure to publish polls or surveys that are strongly relevant to the target market of your website to keep them interested to find out about the results.

4) Hold puzzles, quizzes and games

Just imagine how many office workers procrastinate at work every day, and you will be able to gauge how many people will keep visiting your site if you provide a very interesting or addicting way of entertainment. You can also hold competitions to award the high score winner to keep people trying continuously to earn the prize.

5) Update frequently with fresh content

Update your site frequently with fresh content so that every time your visitors come back, they will have something to read on your site. This is the most widely known and most effective method of attracting returning visitors, but this is also the least carried out one because of the laziness of webmasters. No one will want to browse a site that looks the same over ten years, so keep your site updated with fresh bites!

Don’t Use Viral Marketing and Kill Your Business!

Creativity.

This is one virtue a site must possess to lead the race in the ruthless competition in the Internet based business. With so many competition and rivalry going on, every method of marketing must be employed and utilized.

It doesn’t matter if you have a killer product or a fantastically designed website, if people don’t know that you exist, it doesn’t matter, and you are not going to make it big. Worse of all, you business could just get killed.

While there are so many methods and schemes used by so many e-commerce sites today, there are still some of those that can help you with an extra boost in the popularity ratings. One of these is the so called Viral Marketing.

While the term Viral easily depicts a virus, a word very much dreaded by all computer owners, it is not what it seems. You do not actually use a computer virus to spread your business; on the contrary it just might kill you. Everyone has had enough of all those pop up ads and spywares.

Viral Marketing Overview

Viral Marketing also known otherwise as Viral Advertising is a marketing technique used to build the public awareness of one’s product or company. They use many forms of media to reach out to the public without actually promoting the product by riding on in other forms of addictive means that could get a person hooked and be obliged or amused to actually pass it on, with the product or company advertisement along with it.

In a nutshell, companies ride on the idea that if people like the content of a media they will pass it on to their friends and family. They sponsor the certain media, such as a cool flash game, funny video, amusing story and such, which one may pass on to another with the company brand or logo or the products description or any other content to help promote the company or its product.

Viral marketing has become a popular means of advertising and marketing because they are relatively low cost. To avoid being tagged as spam mail, viral marketing counts on the eagerness of one person to pas on the product. If a person sees the name of the person they know as the sender, they won’t block it and open it as well.

Many companies offer incentives such as discounts and rebates when they help in spreading their viral marketing. They rely on the number of recipients a viral marketing gets from one person in determining the amount or number of incentive they can be attributed with.

Using Viral Marketing to your advantage

The main and foremost advantage of viral marketing is that you get a lot of publicity and public awareness about your site and your company. You get to generate a flow of traffic that are potential customers. With a little ingenuity and imagination, plus some incentives or prizes, you can reach out to a great number of people and announce your existence.

Most every site and companies are catching on to the effectivity of Viral Marketing and Advertising. Not using it could kill your business. Along with other schemes and methods in promoting your site, like Search Engine Optimization and such, viral marketing could easily push you ahead in the rating games.

Viral Marketing could be a sneaky way to get people to know about you and your company. You get them to pass your advertisement along. They are also very low cost that not investing in it could be downright a business suicide. All it takes is a great idea, a good addicting game, a funny story many ideas are still out there. Create a gossip or a buzz, many movies are promoted by using scandals and gossips to make them moiré popular. Remember the movie “The Blair Witch Project”?

Many big companies have tried viral marketing and have had many success stories with it. A classic example is Microsoft’s Hotmail. They were the first known big company to utilize the scheme and it has worked wonders for them.

Now it’s your turn to use viral marketing to work wonders for you. Act now and reap the benefits Viral Marketing will provide for you and your sales figures.

Generate Web Traffic Free

Putting up a company would of course require a lot of things, to get straight to the point, you need a capital. To make money requires money as well. But of course, with the versatility the internet offers, there are many ways you could find that could help optimize the potential of your site or business in generating traffic.

While there are ways to jumpstart your traffic flows, many sites don’t have the resources that others have to generate more traffic for your site. Well, you don’t have to spend a cent; all you need is the proper mindset and a lot of eagerness. You also must have the drive and perseverance to do hard work and research to generate more traffic for your site.

How sweet it is to have more traffic for your site without spending a single cent. Now it’s a sure thing that many sites have articles that offer tips and guidelines in how to generate traffic using only free methods. Because it is possible, you don’t need to speed a single cent, it may take time, to say honestly, I’m not going to beat around the bush with you. You get better chances by paying for your advertisements, but at least you get a fighting chance with some of these free methods I’m about to tell you.

Take advantage of online forums and online communities. The great thing about forums and online communities is that you can target a certain group that fits the certain demographic that you are looking for. You can discuss about lots of things about the niche that you represent or offer. Another great advantage is that you know what you are getting into and you will be prepared.

With online communities and forums you can build a reputation for your company. Show them what you are made of and wow them with your range of expertise about the subject, with that you can build a reputation and build trust with the people in your expertise and knowledge.

You can also make use of newsletters. Provide people with a catalog of your products and interesting and entertaining articles. If you make it really interesting and entertaining, more people will sign up for your newsletter and recommend it to other people. The more people who signs up for your newsletter, the more people there will be that will go to your site increasing your traffic.

Another great idea is trading links with other sites. You don’t have to spend a cent. All you have to do is reach an agreement with another webmaster. With exchanging links, the efforts both sites do will benefit both sites. Every traffic that goes to the site could potentially click on the link of your site and visit your site as well. This works well especially when both sites feature the same niche.

Write articles that could pique the attention of people that have interest in your product. Try writing articles that will provide tips and guides to other aficionados. Writing articles that provide good service and knowledge to other people would provide the necessary mileage your traffic flow needs.

Many sites offer free submission and posting of your articles. When people find interest in your articles they have a good chance of following the track by finding out where the article originated. Include a link or a brief description of your company with the article and there’s a great probability that they will go to your site.

Write good content for your site. Many search engines track down the keywords and keyword phrases your site uses and how they are used. It is not a requirement that a content should be done by a professional content writer. You could do your on but you have to make content for your site that is entertaining as well as informational. It should provide certain requirements as well as great quality.
Generally, internet users use search engines to find what they are looking for. Search engines in return use keyword searching in aiding their search results. With the right keywords, you could get high rankings in search engine results without the costs.

All of these methods and more will drive more traffic to your site for free. All it takes is a bit of effort and extended man hours. Learn all you can about the methods depicted here and you will soon have a site with a great traffic flow without the usual costs that come with it.

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Web Traffic ..?To get The Most Out Of It

Establishing your own E-commerce site is not like what it used to be. There are thousands of competition that is all too willing to get a bigger share of the pie. Every scheme and method you can find to augment your sales would be very beneficial.

We have got to admit to ourselves. Most of us are into it for the money. We are not going to waste our time and effort just for the fun of it. Many sites would not wait until hell freezes over just to see their profits. While there are some who takes things lightly there are always those who would rather see profit any given day.

It is common knowledge that without traffic we have no business. Like any business, without any customers you don’t get sales. Traffic represents all the people that gets a chance to see what you have to offer. The more people who see your products the more people there would be to buy them.

Nobody puts up an E-commerce site that doesn’t expect profit. We have a startup capital that needs to be regained. With a consistent traffic, we at least have a fighting chance to achieve that probability. Monetizing your traffic would optimize your chances of making the best out of it.

Making Money out of your Traffic

The best and most proven method of making a profit out of your traffic is using advertising. The internet generates hundreds of thousands upon hundred of thousands of traffic everyday. Most of them are searching for something. While some are just looking for information there is also a good percentage that is looking for something that they need.

The internet has proven to be a very reliable source in finding what was deemed to be a very unsearchable product. The internet has made the world a smaller place; you can advertise a product from the depths of Istanbul and still find a buyer from the center of Philadelphia.

Generating traffic is not an easy task. You have to contend with a great number of sites to generate a good number of traffic flow. But if done successfully this could open up a Pandora’s Box of possibilities. One of the benefits is monetizing your traffic flow.

So, to get to the core of it the more traffic you generate the more likely you are considered as a desirable, desirable, in a sense that a good traffic flowing site is easily convertible to profit. Basically traffic equals profit. Advertising is the name of the game; with the good advertising scheme you can use your traffic flow to your advantage.

When you have good traffic you have a good number of potential customers, customers that are willing to pour money into your coffers. Other than that these are also traffic that can be redirected to sponsored links that are willing to pay you for a sizeable portion of the traffic that you have generated.

This scheme is called ‘pay-per-click’. With every click a visitor of your site makes on an advertised link you will be paid. The more traffic you generate and the more clicks that happens would spell to more profits.

Affiliate Programs

Another method of monetizing your traffic are affiliate programs. You can link up with other tried and tested sites and online companies and monetize your traffic by having a percentage of sales generated by traffic coming from your site.

The basic idea is, traffic generated from your site will go to another site that can offer a product that you do not carry. Many programs can keep track and make records of transactions that was made possible because of site linkage.

When purchases are made by customers that was led by your site to their site you get a percentage of that sale. Affiliate programs would give you the benefit of monetizing your traffic without the actual need of carrying or promoting a certain product.

There are so many ways and methods to monetize your traffic. All it takes is a bit of hard work and the desire to successfully launch a profit-earning site. The internet is a veritable source of information, many tips and guides are offered everywhere in how to monetize your traffic and make your site a good profit earner.

Five Important Rules in Website Design

When it comes to your website, extra attention should be paid to every minute detail to make sure it performs optimally to serve its purpose. Here are seven important rules of thumb to observe to make sure your website performs well.

1) Do not use splash pages

Splash pages are the first pages you see when you arrive at a website. They normally have a very beautiful image with words like “welcome” or “click here to enter”. In fact, they are just that — pretty vases with no real purpose. Do not let your visitors have a reason to click on the “back” button! Give them the value of your site up front without the splash page.

2) Do not use excessive banner advertisements

Even the least net savvy people have trained themselves to ignore banner advertisements so you will be wasting valuable website real estate. Instead, provide more valueable content and weave relevant affiliate links into your content, and let your visitors feel that they want to buy instead of being pushed to buy.

3) Have a simple and clear navigation

You have to provide a simple and very straightforward navigation menu so that even a young child will know how to use it. Stay away from complicated Flash based menus or multi-tiered dropdown menus. If your visitors don’t know how to navigate, they will leave your site.

4) Have a clear indication of where the user is

When visitors are deeply engrossed in browsing your site, you will want to make sure they know which part of the site they are in at that moment. That way, they will be able to browse relevant information or navigate to any section of the site easily. Don’t confuse your visitors because confusion means “abandon ship”!

5) Avoid using audio on your site

If your visitor is going to stay a long time at your site, reading your content, you will want to make sure they’re not annoyed by some audio looping on and on on your website. If you insist on adding audio, make sure they have some control over it — volume or muting controls would work fine.

Search Engine Optimization And Why .?

E-commerce is a cut throat business. You have to arm yourself with the proper know-how and the tools to make your site a cut above the rest. Each day, more and more sites are clambering to optimize their rankings in websites and if you lose your guard, you may just get trampled on and be left in the abyss filled with so many failed e-commerce sites.

Search Engine Optimization or SEO is a term widely used today by many e-commerce sites. For the past few years and the next ten years or so, search engines would be the most widely used internet tool to find the sites that they need to go to or the product or information they need.

Most people that use search engines use only the ten top search results in the first page. Making it to the first page, more so to the top three is a barometer of a sites success in search engine optimization. You will get a higher ratio of probability in being clicked on when you rank high. The more traffic for your site, the more business you rake in.

But, it is essential to grab a hold of that spot or make your ranking even better. As I aforementioned, each day is a new day for all e-commerce sites to make them selves rank higher using search engine optimization. It is imperative to make your site better and better everyday.

So just what is search engine optimization and do you have to use it? The answer to why you have to use it is an easy one. You need search engine optimization to be number one, or maybe at least make your site income generating.

With search engine optimization you can get the benefit of generating a high traffic volume. Let’s just say you get only a turn out of successful sales with 10 to 20 percent of your traffic. If you get a hundred hits or more a day, you get a good turn out of sales already. If you get only twenty to ten hits a day, you only get one or two if not any at all.

So once again, what is search engine optimization? Search engine optimization is utilizing tools and methods in making your site top ranking in the results of search engines. Getting yourself in the first page and better yet in the top half of the page will ensure that your site will generate public awareness of your site’s existence and subsequently generate more traffic, traffic that could lead to potential income and business.

Search engine optimization requires a lot of work to be fully realized. There are many aspects you have to change in your site or add as well to get search engine optimization. These will include getting lots of information about the keyword phrases that are popular in regards to your sites niche or theme.

You may also need to rewrite your sites contents so that you could get the right keyword phrases in your site without making it too commercial but light and informative. There are certain rules and guidelines to be followed with making your site’s content applicable and conducive to search engine optimization.

You will also need to collaborate with many other sites so that you could get link exchanges and page transfers. The more inbound and outbound traffics generated by sites among others are one of the components search engines uses to rank sites.

Try to search the internet for many useful help. Tips, guidelines and methods for search engine optimization are plenty to be found. Read many articles that can help you optimize your site in search engine results. The more knowledge and information you gather the better. This will all help you in getting those high rankings. This may require a little time and effort in your part but the benefits will be astounding.

If you can part with some money, there are many sites in the internet that can help you in search engine optimization. There are many sites that help in tracking keyword phrases that can help your site. There are also some content writers that have lots of experience in making good keyword laden content for your sites that have good quality.

Act now and see the benefits garner with search engine optimization. All of these will result to better traffic and more business for your site and company.