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Eight simple things to do beyond your professional website design

The information in this article will help you formulate a solid plan that you can repeat each month. The honest truth is that you have to set a plan and stick to it. Perseverance is the key to success, not just a professional website design. Acquiring the right knowledge and skills along the way helps you to reach success much sooner.

You’ve added new content to your website in the last 30 days, right?

If not, then like many other sites, yours has gone stale and may websites have lost credibility because there is old information on your website. Frequently updating your website and adding fresh, compelling content is the best way to attract and keep traffic coming to your website. If your visitors are finding nothing new when they come back then the likelihood of them coming back drops dramatically. Combine that with the fact that it takes the typical visitor to hit your site 3-5 times before considering a purchase and you’ll see why it’s so important. Show people that you’re involved with your website and using it as a communication tool and not just an online brochure and they will keep coming back. If you can’t update your site, find out how toupdate your existing website easily.

Are you turning visitors into leads?

What’s the difference between your website and your brochure? Hopefully you’ve got a ton of answers here. Your website needs to be interactive. This could be something as simple as adding coupons or contests on your website but should always include a focus on lead capture. You should always include a short, simple form on your pages. Even if you run an e-commerce website there are many people that just want to ask a question before they buy.

Thank your existing customers.

You’ve seen all those special offers for new customers only, right? But what about those faithful customers who’ve been with you all along? An easy way to generate new business is to get your existing clients to drum it up for you. Say could least one existing client every month. It can be a simple card or a special gift, anything that gets the point across. Take time to make sure it’s personalized. A special touch is to even send them a hand written card and without trying to up sell anything. They’ll know that you sent it just to say thank you and they will be more likely to open emails and other correspondence from you in the future. You’ll be surprised at how much it does for you and how hard happy customers work for you.

Hand out 10 business cards every month.

This is about as old fashioned as it gets. With all the focus on technology and social Media Marketing on sites like twitter and Facebook face to face interaction almost gets lost in the shuffle. As someone asked you for a business card recently only to find you patting your pockets? Make sure you’ve got your business cards on you and make a point of handing them out whenever you can. Just make sure handing them the business card is not the only thing you do. Introduce yourself and shake their hand. Let them know you’re in business and passionate about what you do.

Start (or keep) blogging.

A good way to gain readership and authority is post a blog article displaying your expertise. By posting regularly you’ll be increasing your exposure and positioning your business as the industry expert. Keep in mind Blogging should be informational and helpful not about selling your latest product or service.

Commit to local search engine optimization.

Making sure your website is visible in the search engines is crucial but if you’re a locally focused business you’ve got to make sure you’re listed in the local search engines. Google, yahoo and being all have local versions of their search engines. You want to make sure you set up a profile with all of them as soon as you can and make sure it’s accurate. The great way to set these up and maintain them quickly and effectively is by visiting a web site called GetListed.org. This site makes it easy to set up your profile and submit to all three including an additional search engine called best of the web. You’ll be amazed at how your website traffic and phone call volume will increase just by submitting to the local versions of the search engines.

Get other websites to link to yours.

I know what you’re thinking…send out a thousand emails and ask for a link exchange. YUCK! It’s true most people think this is the best way to get links to your website. However, it isn’t. The best way to get links to your website is by creating good content. I know, I’m also tired of hearing “good content”. What does that actually mean? I really like a term I heard recently. Try thinking up an “ultimate resource page”. Give people everything they would ever want to know about a particular subject all on one page. It’s OK to link to other web sites that have already created good information. The idea is to bring all of that information together on one page, yours.

Put one system in place or improve an existing one.

Did you forget to call someone back? Are you creating the same form in Microsoft Word from scratch every time? Systems make business life easier. The more day to day tasks you can automate the better. Implement a CRM like salesforce.com or get everyone in your team on the same page with a project management software like basecamp from 37 signals. There is software, templates and other stuff out there that help you become more productive and prevent things from slipping through the cracks. Take some time to recognize a recurring problem in your business, then look for a solution.

These are eight simple things that you can do every month. Got something to add to the list? Please leave a comment!