The internet is truly remarkable. Just think about it: 99% of what you'll find online serves no practical purpose at all. Yet that's the stuff most people spend their time watching - a lot like TV. If you want to make a website an overnight success, forget about adding free forums or wondering how to make a blog and build a following; it'll take way more than a couple of hours to build a sizable audience.
Got a great idea for how to make an online store a roaring success? Well, sorry, but that isn't going to get you millions of hits before sunrise. And no, if you're out to break a world record for building a massive following for your free website in as little time as possible, you don't have to take your clothes off, nor anyone else's for that matter.
To make your own website a true internet super phenomenon, you just need one thing: Jedi cats.
It's pretty clear that spring has arrived with a bang – not only have temperatures skyrocketed (much to my cats' delight), but after last week's emyspot website makeover, our hyperactive team this week got stuck into developing some really great additions to our members' website builder tools. The team's efforts weren't limited to subscribers to our pro website development offers – if you're one of our members who enjoy the opportunity to make a free website with doomby, you haven't been left out either, and can already take advantage of the latest additions to your favorite free website builder.
This week's development efforts have concentrated on how to make a website better through social networking integration. Though we've long provided an access to social bookmarking services for your website content directly from the site manager, allowing you to publish your page links to your Facebook and Twitter accounts, this week we added a few menu gadgets to let your site visitors do the sharing for you. Though simple to set up, they really help improve your SERP ranking – or web presence – exponentially. All without you lifting a finger (almost).
Over the last couple of days, I've been surfing around trying to get an idea of exactly how small businesses (those with 1 to 20 employees) have embraced e-commerce. I wound up spending a lot of that time focusing on Canada – partly to honor the Olympic spirit, and partly because their results just ranked better in Google. Though I wasn't that surprised by what I read, its implications for small businesses are truly startling.
To give you an idea why, let's go back a few years to 2007 – that being the latest year for which I have a full set of figures at hand. First, the facts: although some 85% of Canadian small businesses had access to the internet, only 36% deemed it necessary to make a business website of their own. Worse still: 45% made online purchases, yet a mere 6% fully embraced reciprocal e-commerce by building an online store1.
No, a catchy title isn't the one I had in mind, but that was a pretty good one for starters, right? On the other hand, the picture on the right has a lot more in common with today's post than may first meet the eye ...
I've been doing a lot of surfing over the last week, going back to get a fresh perspective on some familiar things. Bossman (the elder) has been doing something similar, though his reflective retro trip has involved listening to such classic 80s musical greats as "Ghostbusters" and "Final Countdown" (not that I'm complaining – it makes me feel way younger than I have been of late).
One of the things I noticed during this week of “revisiting old things in a new way” was just how websites were marketed, and how I responded to that. So rather than talk about how to make a website this week, I thought I'd step back and talk about how to make a successful website, and what SEO has to do with making it a success.
You choose what clothes to wear before you go out each day, right, just like you chose what colors to use to make your own website? Those choices, I'll wager, were dependent both on the the context and on who you are: different strokes for different folks, and your Sunday best for … whatever you figure is worth it. I've been putting mine on (Sunday best, that is) every morning this week, hoping it would attract Starey and Dearie out into the open. My plan half worked … once (it was Dearie, on Tuesday, for those interested, and yes, she seemed fine).
Now, it may startle you to know that most people's first attempts at “dressing to attract a wild animal's attention” … fail. Startled? I thought so. Indeed, as you might already suspect, there are more effective ways of getting attention.