“If You Build It, They Won’t Come” (A Cautionary Website Tale)

“If You Build It, They Won’t Come” (A Cautionary Website Tale)

“If you build it, he will come” is a famous line from the 1989 movie “Field of Dreams.” Will the same hold true for your website? In the movie, a whispy whispering voice whispered in Kevin Costner’s ear convincing him to spend a great deal of money, time and sanity in creating a baseball field in a field of corn. This was in hopes that some expired baseball players will show up and play a game or two.

Good news for Kevin. The baseball players showed up.

Then, James Earl Jones convinces Kevin that people will show up to watch the baseball players.

Great news for Kevin. The fans showed up, too.

Traffic doesn’t just “show up” at your website

Alas, in the business of websites and online marketing, traffic does not just simply “show up” at your website.

Dreams and Hope do not drive traffic. The digital landscape is littered with hundreds of thousands (millions, really) of well-intentioned websites that are ghost-towns. No one goes to them. At all. Sad.

Sadder still is the business who has gone through an amazing website rebuild, only to discover that after the excitement of day 1 of the website launch, there isn’t really any more traffic coming to their website than there was last week.

“I have just created something so illogical.” – Kevin Costner, Field of Dreams

Actually, if you build your website right, some of them *may* come.

Using the power of organic search and inbound marketing, you *can* actually make some traffic come to your website by building it. Properly, that is.

When built properly, a website becomes known as a “thought leader” and search engines will display your URL when someone searches for keywords that are related to products/services you offer. Organic search a.k.a. “SEO” Search Engine Optimization.

To be successful in SEO, your website must have 2 things:

  1. Ongoing ontent your customers love
  2. Technical efficiency so that the rest of the internet (e.g. search engines) can understand what it is you do. Click here to do our free SEO technical test with your website … it’ll give you a score … 55 is about average.

Choose a good website platform to give your digital marketing a good foundation.

The technology you choose to run your website (your website “platform” or “site builder”) is an important component of SEO organic success. Making things more difficult (or easier depending on how you look at it) — there are over 1,300 website platforms available. See: http://www.cmsmatrix.org/

We’re big fans of CMS (Wikipedia: Content Management Systems) here at CMO4Hre. WordPress is our fave. We’ve also worked on Drupal websites. Dot-Net-Nuke. We’ve even touched on Joomla. All of which we enjoy.

We also enjoy site-builders like Wix, Weebly, Squarespace, etc… ’cause they’re fun to use, look sexy and promise the world. BUT, will they really deliver SEO results? Kinda. While these builders platforms arguably do a “good” job of SEO (a topic of much debate!), they don’t do a “great” job.

To get people to come to your Field of Dreams, you’ll need to do a “great” job with SEO.

Here’s a step-by-step article that compares WordPress development with Wix, Weebly and Squarespace: http://www.getspokal.com/wix-weebly-squarespace-wordpress-how-does-each-stack-up/

If you have any type of competition in your industry (and, of course, we all do), know that your competitors are stepping up to the plate with everything they’ve got to hit a home run. Why would you pick a technology that’ll get you to second base?

SEO that drives organic search traffic is just 1 of 7 ways people can come to your website. To really drive exponential traffic, you’ll need to consider the other 6 during ongoing digital marketing management after you launch your site. So, you’ll need to think about those as you build your website.

Make sure you’ve got a good catcher before you start throwing pitches.

In addition to designing your website to optimize traffic, your website also needs to be able to engage and convert site visitors. If it can’t do that, there’s no sense in trying to drive a bunch of traffic to it, right?

The CMO4Hire Approach To Building Websites

A new website is a powerful marketing tool when done properly. Here’s how we approach it. (See minute 1:23 for our 7 step website design process)

Life After Launch

3 Things You Need To Realize About Online Marketing For Your Business

  1. You’ll never finish building your website. A website is not a project. A website is not a brochure. A website is the digital front-office of your business; one that is constantly evolving, one that is constantly interesting and engaging. The internet changes rapidly. People’s buying behaviour changes. Google/Bing search engine rules change. New hacks arise daily. New technologies and platform changes occur frequently. Website development never ends.
  2. People can come to your website in 7 ways. There are only 7 ways for people to get to your website. Here’s the “7 Sacred Channels of Great Googlie Traffic” and what Google thinks about them:
    1. Direct traffic: Sessions in which the user typed the name of your website URL into the browser or came to your site via a bookmark (i.e., source=”(direct)” and medium=”(not set)” or “(none)”).
    2. Search: Traffic from unpaid search on any search engine (i.e., medium=”organic”).
    3. Paid Ads: Traffic from the AdWords Search Network or other search engines, with a medium of “cpc” or “ppc” .
    4. Display Ads: Interactions with a medium of “display” or “cpm”. Also includes AdWords interactions with ad distribution network set to “content”
    5. Social: Traffic from any of approximately 400 social networks (that are not tagged as ads).
    6. Email: Sessions that are tagged with a medium of “email”.
    7. Referral Links: Traffic from websites that are not social networks.
    8. Other: Sessions that are tagged with a medium of “cpc”, “ppc”, “cpm”, “cpv”, “cpa”, “cpp”, “affiliate” (excluding Paid Search).
  3. Online marketing isn’t just about a single campaign or two. It’s about maximizing those 7 channels of traffic 24/7/365 using sustained digital marketing tactics. It’s about weekly agile marketing scrums that help you improve using data. Think of it as a marathon, with pacing ’cause you’re in it for the long run, not a frantic hamster in a cage.

In virtually every single industry today, there is intense online competition to get the attention of a buying public.

To consistently beat your competition … to build an online marketing engine that delivers leads frequently … you need a comprehensive ongoing strategy of agile marketing to master all 7 ways people come to your website.

A comprehensive online marketing approach is what separates the corn from the husk.

If you’re not prepared to invest in your ongoing online marketing, then the people you want to attract will find another baseball diamond in another corn field.

“Sometimes when you believe the impossible, the incredible comes true.” – Field of Dreams Trailer

Here’s a 20,000 foot level view of how we approach digital brand management:

Enjoy your summer, everyone!


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