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Article by Lonny Hallsted (Kazeli - Business Referral Network)

So you've just created your website... congratulations! You've probably spent a lot of time trying to choose the right design and perfect colour scheme, collecting all the images of your products, services, staff, offices and writing the text for the website. Now it all seems complete and the website is live - out there for all the web to see.

But wait... how will people get to it? How will they know that you have a new website? Even if they know that you have a new website - do they know the address? You've probably mentioned it to a couple of your clients and you might have even sent the url to some people who asked for it. But what about all those people who don't know you personally? What about your potential clients who want to find out more about your company before actually contacting you?

Listed below are some techniques that are straight-forward and yet effective. You don't need to know a great deal about computers or the Internet in order to put these ideas to use.

Create an email signature with a link to your website.
An eye-catching professional signature at the bottom of each of your individual company emails is a must when promoting your website. An email signature provides a method of promoting your website in an effective and subtle way.

Include your website url on all company printed material and all forms of advertising.
This includes TV ads, radio ads, billboard ads, company brochures, business cards, company letterhead etc. Any printed material that represents your company should include the url to your website. In fact, the url should appear wherever your address, phone number and email is shown. 

Get your site listed in the search engines
Submit your website to the main search engines. Google, Yahoo!, MSN, AltaVista etc. Each search engine has its own form for you to fill out online to submit your site.

Make sure you include a valid email address in order to confirm your submission. You can submit each page of your website individually but make sure you do not make more than one submission per day. Search engines might interpret this as spamming and may blacklist your site.

Organize online competitions or offer special packages for online orders.
Making some services web-based saves a great deal of time for most businesses. Clients can search and select the products or services that they need from the comfort of their own home, any time of the day or night and without feeling the threat of pushy sales people.
If your website offers online ordering or purchasing then its only logical that you would want to encourage your clients to use the online services that you offer. This can be done by offering special discounts for orders placed through the website.

Running competitions online also attracts more visitors. For example you could introduce a game whereby the highest score of the week wins a prize or you could tie this in to the online ordering and give a prize to the user who placed the most orders.

When using these tactics be sure to ask all your visitors to leave you some information about themselves in return for taking part in the competion. This way you can slowly build a database of potential clients to whom you can send special offers in the future.

Write articles
Its very simple... you just write about what you know. It could be an article providing tips or advice that you can offer as a specialist in your field. For example - if you own a furniture store you could write an article about how to clean and care for wooden furniture or fabrics.

You can then email your article to publishers and webmasters who are responsible for related websites. Since each article is filled with real, useful information on your area of expertise, many webmasters and editors are happy to post the articles as their visitors will appreciate new and interesting content. These articles could also be sent to magazines or newsletters which aren't online.

Don't forget to include your website url at the end of the article!

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