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Website Marketing for 2011

From apps to photo sharing to "checking in", 2010 has seen a dramatic rise in cell phone subscriptions, smart phones and notebooks. Avid users are accessing everything from the latest deals at Vons as they go through the checkout line, to restaurant reviews, maps, games and videos.

Although seriously limited, the United States Senate has updated their decorum to include the use of iPads. Even seniors are plugged in and photo sharing.

Have you checked your website on these different screen sizes? Is your website easy to navigate by cell phone? Can a visitor on a cell phone find your phone number? Do you have a link that pushes your phone number from the web to their cell phone?

You may not need it if you have a simple business, but you will definitely need a blog. Grab the advantage in the search engines before your competition does. Google rewards all of the new technology, especially blogs. The internet is all about inter-connectedness. Active blogs with regular updates must also interact with other quality blogs, Twitter and Facebook.

Social Media is your way to market your blog and or website. Consider keyword buys on Facebook. The traffic is among the best and their prices can be cheaper than Google. Develop and reward your fan base. Make sure your posts are more than advertisements. Your fans want to read things that are interesting or that save them money. Deals and coupons do well in social media circles.

Mobile, Mobile and more Mobile! Cell phone subscriptions have exploded. There were 8 people per hundred with a cell phone subscription in the year 2000. That figure jumped to 76.2 per hundred in 2010 (http://www.laughingsquid.com). The Droid X comes with an eight megapixel camera and HD video capacity. These phones do well with blogging and social media formats.

Publishing your updates through RSS feeds (Really Simple Syndication) will allow cellphone and iPad users to easily access your information. Users can take an RSS feed and add it to their Google Reader or Google homepage. We add RSS feeds to our Google homepage so we can read the latest posts on search engine optimization and social media.

Reviews will continue to increase in importance. Everyone can have their five minutes of fame through a review. If you are lucky, the reviewer is thoughtful and takes the time to present a true picture of your business. Some reviews use forums like Trip Advisor and Yelp to exercise their negative outlook. If you receive a negative review, don’t react. Simply state the positive, what you did to help the client resolve their issue (if possible) and how committed you are to your clients.

Make videos if you can. How many homemade videos have you watched on YouTube? If you haven’t, everyone else has. Make videos of your business, your product or your location. Open a YouTube account using important keywords in your account name. Post the videos using keywords in your title and description. You can easily use the code YouTube supplies to add the video to your blog post. You’ll be amazed how many people will watch them. Be sure to have your website address and phone number at the end of the video. Make it easy for people to contact you.

Press Releases are still a great way to get attention from the media. Are you still using static press releases with ### at the bottom? If you are, it’s time to take it up a notch. Include embedded video, photos, podcasts. Offer links to your RSS feed, Technorati Tags and a "Share This" button. Old school press releases aren’t exciting. Social media press releases will capture more attention.

Websites require more attention now. Website owners are expected to blog, post photos and video, besides offering products, discounts and deals. There are plenty of rewards to be had, if you can organize consistent and interesting posts to your website. Work with your staff to generate unique and interesting content.

With all that said…remember to keep it simple.

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