Get linked. This is a very important part of website management. Exchange links. Trading links with other websites that are closely related to the subject of your website can bring you more website traffic. These are two-way links because you must provide a link to them, too, and linking to low-quality websites can threaten the credibility of yours. Only link to sites that are dead on topic, and truly help your visitors. Instead of trading links, you could also trade banner ads, half page ads, classified ads, etc.

Advertise your presence. Besides using links, you must make use of numerous other ways to increase web traffic. Sit down and write a list of all the ways you can think of to get your web address noticed and clicked on. For example:

* Use e-zines. Make your own that relate to your website and form a regular reminder each issue for people to visit your website. Submit all the free e-zine directories on the internet.
* Submit your articles to e-zines, websites and writing sites that accept article submissions. Include your business information and web address at the end of the article. This is a good way to create one-way backlinks to your website. This is the most effective way to get listed on any search engine. Usually, the more relevant links you have pointing to your site the higher you will rank.
* Go beyond the electronic medium and into the print medium. Advertise in local newspapers, business brochures, magazines, nationwide publications and mail-drop literature. And don't forget the perennial favorite, the good old Yellow Pages™ - printed version naturally!
* Small business cards left in cafés, on signboards, exchanged at meetings etc.
* Use local resources such as clubs, libraries and community centers for non-profit website awareness raising.
* Participate on message boards. Post answers to other people's questions, ask questions and post appropriate information. Include your signature file containing your website's URL at the end of all your postings.
* Start your own online discussion community. It could be an online message board, e-mail discussion list or chat room. When people get involved in your community, they will regularly return to communicate with others.
* Use word of mouth. Tell everyone you know about your website, give out business cards to passers-by in the street, and so on. You might even want to run a guerrilla marketing program!
* Use your car, especially if your website is area-specific (e.g. a website detailing local events or selling local services). Get some vinyl decals or bumper stickers created and turn your car into a moving advertisement, literally driving traffic to your web site!

Give freebies. Who doesn't like a freebie?! Online freebies are commonplace and they leave the visitor wanting more when they are well written and informative introductory materials. Consider such freebies as:

* Giving away an eBook with your ad on it. Allow your visitors to also give the freebie away. This'll increase your ad exposure and increase web traffic to your website at the same time;
* Holding free online classes or seminars. They could be held in your website's chat room. The idea of "live" information will definitely entice people to visit your website. You will become known as an expert on the topic.
* Giving visitors a free entry into your contest or sweepstakes. The prizes should be something of interest or value to your visitors. Most people who enter will continually revisit your web site to get the results.
* Letting visitors download free software such as freeware, shareware, demos etc. You could even turn part of your site into a free software directory. If you created the software, include your ad inside and let other people give it away.
* Targeting specific groups who might worry about using the internet with free classes in using it on your site - senior citizens, busy workers etc. might find these convenient and alluring.
* Offering free online services or utilities from your website. For instance, they could be search engine submitting, copywriting proofreading etc. The service or utility should be helpful to your target audience.
* Giving free consulting to people who visit your website. You could offer your knowledge via e-mail or by telephone. People will consider this a huge value because consulting fees can be very expensive.
* Offering a free start-up package that has a finite time; enough time for the customer to practice with your online product and like it enough to pay for continued use.
* Sending out free CD-Roms, CDs, DVDs etc. that contain starter packs or teasers to encourage the customer to use your site more.
* Offering free screensavers or templates for business cards, cards, writing paper etc., anything that a customer can print out.

Here are 40 simple actions you can take to get started.

1. Your website design is the first impression. Make sure it is
professional and relevant to the subject matter.

2. Navigation must be intuitive. If visitors can't find what they are
looking for easily, they will question your competence in providing
what they want.

3. Make the website personal by giving it its own tone and voice.
People buy people.

4. Follow the HEART rule of creating o­nline content. (Reminder: HEART
stands for Honest, Exclusive, Accurate, Relevant and Timely.)

5. Use language that is appropriate to the audience. It will build empathy.

6. Regularly add new content to your site. It shows that the business
is alive and kicking.

7. Review all links. Doubts will quickly form in your visitors' minds
if links don't work or, worse still, take them to error pages.

8. Good grammar and spelling matter. Errors give the impression of
sloppiness and carelessness.

9. Don't make outrageous and unbelievable claims, like "Read this blog
and you'll be a millionaire by the end of the week." People are used
to scams, get-rich-quick schemes and rip-offs.

10. Publish REAL testimonials and third-party endorsements. Try to
always use real names and link to websites where possible. Some sites
show images of letters sent by happy customers.

If you want to know how your site ranks (in terms of building trust
o­nline), then visit: and know by
yourself, where your site is ranking.

11. Publish case studies about customers you have helped, who use your
product, etc.

12. Don't put down, curse or insult competitors. It's unprofessional.
It is better to offer an objective comparison of competitive services
or products.

13. Focus o­n building your long-term reputation, not o­n making quick sales.

14. Write articles for humans, not search engines.

15. Make your 'About Us' page personal and comprehensive. It plays an
important part in making visitors feel comfortable that real people
are behind the site.

16. Publish your photo or the photos of the key people involved with
the site. Again, this reinforces the fact that there are real people
behind the screenshots.

17. Clearly identify who is behind the site. Nothing creates more
suspicion than a site that tries to hide the identity of its

18. o­n the 'Contact Us' page, provide an email form, telephone
number, fax and address of the company. In st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />
w:st="on">Europe, it is a legal requirement for sites
taking funds, but even sites driven by advertising will benefit from

19. Provide a telephone number that people can call and talk to a person.

20. Provide Web addresses linked to the website domain, not addresses
from free webmail services such as Hotmail and Gmail.

If you want to know how your site ranks (in terms of building trust
o­nline), then visit: and know by
yourself, where your site is ranking.

21. Think carefully about reciprocal links. If your site is about
organic food and you have links to Party Poker, people are going to
question your integrity.

22. Think carefully about the adverts you display o­n your site.
Ensure that they are relevant to your subject and audience.

23. Write and publish your privacy policy. Be clear about what you
will and will not do with any personal data you collect. State that
you adhere to all data protection laws. Make it easy to read and don't
use legal gobbledygook.

24. Write and publish a security policy. State what measures you take
to ensure that all transactions are secure as well as how well you
handle customers data.

25. Ensure that you have a security and privacy policy which is linked
from the footer o­n every page. Make the link more prominent o­n all
the order pages.

26. Clearly publish your guarantee. I would recommend making it a 100%
money-back guarantee if possible.

27. Clearly state your refund and returns policy.

28. If you use PayPal, put the PayPal logo o­n your site. If you have
a merchant services account with a major bank like Citibank or HSBC,
put its logo o­n your site.

29. Use Google search o­n your site for two reasons. First, it is a
great search solution which will help your visitors find what they are
looking for. Second, having the Google name o­n your site instills

30 If there are well-known industry associations for your subject,
join up and put their logos o­n your site.

If you want to know how your site ranks (in terms of building trust
o­nline), then visit: and know by
yourself, where your site is ranking.

31. Have a forum o­n your site and respond quickly to questions. Have
the attitude that you are happy to help others without receiving
immediate reward. As the old saying goes, 'Givers always gain.'

32. Allow people to comment o­n articles. Interactivity and an
exchange of views build community and a sense of involvement.

33. If people provide constructive criticism or comments in the forum,
don't delete them, but respond with your point of view.

34. Use the words 'secure website' whenever you try to get any
information from visitors, including newsletter sign-ups, forum input
and payment.

35. o­n every page, state, "We take your privacy and security very
seriously." Link the statement to the security and privacy policy.

36. If you are selling a subscription, offer a low-cost, entry-level
option. This could be a o­ne-day taster, 'a week before billing
starts' or a monthly trial.

37. o­nly ask for information from customers that you really need. For
example, for an email newsletter sign-up, the o­nly information you
REALLY need is an email address, so that is all you should ask for.

38. If you have pricing o­n your website, make it transparent. I
recently went to buy a book which was advertised for $10. When I
checked out, they added tax, post and packaging, and the final bill
was $19.50. I didn't buy it as I felt they had deliberately tried to
mislead me.

39. Start a small newsletter of your company/services & circulate it
among your clients/employees. Also, publish it o­n your website

40. Allow people to "unsubscribe" from your mailing list. This may
sound very obvious, but I have found that many websites still don't
follow it.

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