5 Tips to Planning a New Website
Set up your free account and be sure to integrate these tools into your site. Spend as much time analyzing your data as you can. This information validates your initial vision and informs many of your future decisions. It can also show weakness in your logic, which will allow you to devise corrective methods.
Recently, Kriti Adlakha wrote about Google Analytics and offered some suggestions how to track website performance with this free tool.
One caution is that you should not go overboard with analytics-based goals. It is very difficult to make meaningful progress on more than one analytics goal at a time. Give each goal its own two-month time period.
5. Market, Market, Market
Develop your marketing plan so you launch with a splash. SEO is one of the best sources of consistent traffic to any website but, if your site is new, you won't get any traffic this way. That means you'll have to rely on referrals and other methods.
- Influencers. Partner with people who influence the communities of your target audience (e.g., journalists, niche bloggers, related businesses, etc.). This will take weeks or even months to pay off, so start in advance when you initiate the website project.
- Content syndication. Create videos and submit them to media sites, asking for links back to your site. Write guest posts and distribute them on larger sites.
- Advertising. There are numerous options, including Google AdWords, product/service/site reviews, social media advertising and more. But whatever you choose, have a purpose such as getting viewers to sign up, subscribe or purchase, rather than sending them to your home page or other random places.
- Social Media. Create two or three social media profiles on some of the big sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ to keep people updated on your recent events and alert them to the new website.
- Yahoo! Answers. Sign up free for this Q&A network and answer questions. After amassing 250 points, you can include a link in your responses and get some major backlinks on Yahoo!.
When marketing the new site, be sure to leverage all your other online and offline assets: email lists, employee meetings, internal newsletters, media lists and more to create a buzz around your website launch. Have you recently launched a website for your business? If so, what did you learn that was unexpected? What would you do differently next time?