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10 Ways To Create and Promote Your Website Effectively

10 Ways To Create and Promote Your Website Effectively

Anyone who wants to run a successful online business must start with a home base: their website. That’s where they share their story. Visitors will drop-by and see what solutions they find to their challenges and problems. Whether they click that “Subscribe” button or buy from you, depends on a number of factors. It won’t happen overnight, but if you promote your website the right way, you’ll achieve the success your business deserves. This post looks at some of the ways of creating and promoting a website. They can be adapted depending on what business you run (consulting, freelancing, writing, etc). Let’s break down the process in two chunks.

How to create a website

1. Register Your Domain Name

This is the foundation of creating your website. Godaddy, Namecheap and 1&1 are just a few of the domain registrars you can choose from. All of them have low prices and offer a variety of package deals to suit every need. When deciding for a domain name, give it some thought; use keywords relevant to your business. Also, since you need to be perceived as a pro, the best thing to do is go for a self-hosted website.

2. Choose a Hosting Service

The next step is to register your hosting account. I recommend you stay away from the free blogging platforms like blogspot.com or wordpress.com, and build a professional website using wordpress.org. Here you also have dozens of options, but I personally recommend Westhost, which I’m using myself. I chose them for two main reasons: they offer a superior service and are extremely affordable. You want a website you can have control over, that you own and have the freedom to use as you wish to offer your visitors the best experience.

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3. A Minimalist WordPress Theme Makes Your Content Stand Out

When getting to this point, bear in mind that your website doesn’t have to be perfect or super flashy. A clean and minimalist theme with a professional look would do. Some of the best WordPress theme providers are: Theme Forest, Genesis and Elegant themes. This post from wplift can also be instrumental in giving you a few ideas about what would work best for your website.

4. Install Plug-Ins on Your WordPress Website

There’s no need to go overboard here either. Some of the plug-ins you’ll most need are Akismet, to protect your blog (assuming you have one) from spam; BackWPup, to automatically back up your WordPress website; WP Super Cache, to help make your site faster and protect it from crashing in case of traffic spikes; and, last but not least, Google Analytics, to measure your results.

5. Persuade Your Visitors with Your Web Copy

Now that your website is shaping up nicely, your web copy should be engaging and right to the point. Persuasive. When you start creating your web pages, picture your potential clients in mind. What makes them tick? Highlight your key points first. Let your visitors know from the get go what you can do for them. Keep in mind they will only have a quick look at your website to decide whether they should stay or leave. Besides that, if you don’t tell them what to do, if your pages don’t include a call-to-action, they’ll click the back button in an instant.

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6.  Not Ready to Launch Yet? No Problem. Create a Landing Page First

As an alternative to the previously covered points, you could just create a landing page that lets your visitors know you’d be launching soon, and build a strong offer – give them a free report or an e-book in exchange for their email address. Make sure you don’t come up with another freebie just because almost everyone does. The world wide web is inundated with those kind of things. Make it count.  It has to be useful, informative and smart. Why? Because you need credibility to attract visitors and convert them into buyers. Let’s look now at some of the ways to earn Google’s trust.

How to promote your website

You need eyeballs to your product or services no matter what business are you in. Your main goal is to turn visitors into subscribers or buyers. But before you get there, you need to spread the word about what you do. Even the best product is useless if people don’t know about it.

7.  Start Marketing Your Business Early

This is a key lesson both Buffer co-founders Joel Gascoigne and Leo Widrich learned and discussed in the early days of their startup. Gascoigne wrote in one of his blog posts that treating his product as finished was essential to immediately see the benefits.

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Widrich pointed out, reflecting to his business partner’s words: “Take what you have, treat it as finished and push it out there.” He added: “People don’t sign up for your product after hearing about you for the first time.” You need to put it out there, so people can hear about it, see how it works and what it can do for them. In our quest to launch the perfect website (or blog) for the perfect business, we tend to keep postponing, waiting for the perfect time when our product or service is polished enough to see the daylight. The thing is you have to start somewhere, otherwise you’ll never advance.

8. Get Links to Earn Credibility

When your website is brand new, you’re not an established authority yet. To get credibility, you need to get links from credible websites. The combination between the quality and quantity of these links is called domain authority (DA) and gives your credibility score. This is measured on a scale from one to 100. Page authority (PA) is also a scale of one to 100 and measures the credibility on a specific page on your website.

9. Link Popularity Matters

The more sites link to your page, the higher the chance that page will rank higher in the search results. Just like in any popularity contest. Your page must be relevant for a specific topic. Also, the words within the links (anchor text) must include a relevant keyword instead of a URL or a “click here.”

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10. Don’t Underestimate the Power of Guest Blogging

Guest blogging is the modern day PR. Whether you sell a product or a service, everything goes down to content, how intelligently you create and promote it, and to what purpose. You write for real people, not robots. You ultimately need to guest post to drive quality traffic to your website, garner credibility and build relationships with the blog owners that will host you. If you already have your website up and running, with a blog attached to it, but still feel like you’re talking to an empty room, here’s what you should do: post two to four times per month on your blog.

Other than that, spend time on building relationships with your peers’ audience. Pitch guest post ideas to major blogs in your industry. As they accept and publish your guest posts, you position yourself as an authority. Here are a few tips from Orbit Media’s Strategic Director Andy Crestodina about how to find host blogs. You should guest post on websites that have a higher DA than yours. When you decide what blogs to pitch, you can use Moz’s Open Site Explorer to do a quick domain and link analysis on up to five sites. Or you can install the free Mozbar (for Google and Firefox), to get fast and easy access to advanced metrics, access top tools and instant website information, all in one place.

But more important, you have to create great content, as this is how you’ll earn brownie points with Google. To sum it up: build a solid offer, cultivate relationships, and gain enough subscribers to further spread the word about how awesome your product and services are. From here on in, you can confidently launch and grow your business. Your turn: What tactics do you use to create and promote your website?

More by this author

Anca Dumitru

Freelance Writer & Content Strategist

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Last Updated on October 16, 2019

11 Meeting Scheduler Apps to Boost Your Productivity

11 Meeting Scheduler Apps to Boost Your Productivity

Automations are key to improving efficiency. Set the system up right from the beginning and you’ll reduce the amount of no-shows and cancellations.

Whatever your business is, with automations, meeting scheduler apps do more than just streamline appointment setting. They prime your workflow for maximum results.

Meeting scheduler apps are awesome if you use them right. Use them wrong and you can look like an arrogant elitist.

In this article, I will share with you 11 great meeting scheduler apps you can start using today to boost your productivity.

1. ScheduleOnce

    ScheduleOnce is an industry leader and robust solution. Whether you work alone or have a large team, ScheduleOnce can support you.

    ScheduleOnce allows you to create multiple users and multiple calendars. I use one calendar for booking podcast guests with automations set up to prep my guests for our interview. I use another calendar for strategy sessions and coaching calls.

    ScheduleOnce also has embeddable widgets so you can keep the scheduler inside your own website.

    Starting at $7 a month and a 14 day free trial, ScheduleOnce can fit a variety of needs in business.

    Available on Web

    2. Calendly

      Calendly stands out for its clean, easy to use interface. If you like clean design, Calendly might be your choice. It too has robust automations and integrations for individuals and teams alike.

      You can try Calendly free for 14 days. Their basic plan is free while their most robust plan is only $12 a month.

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      Available on Web | Google Chrome Extension

      3. Assistant.to

        For those who use gmail, Assistant.to is a super simple solution.

        From inside an email, you click on the Assistant.to icon and pick times your free. Assistant.to embeds the times directly into the email so the recipient can quickly pick a time that works for them.

        While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of apps like Calendly or ScheduleOnce, Assistant.to is completely free.

        Available on Web

        4. Acuityscheduling

          Acuity is a robust meeting scheduler very similar to ScheduleOnce. It integrates with CRMs, Email Marketing platforms, Analytics tools and accounting software.

          It comes with a 14 day free trial. They have a free solo account but if you want the benefit of the integrations, you’ll start as low as $15 a month and can cost up to $50 a month.

          Available on Web | iOS | Android

          5. Pick

            Built for simplicity, Pick is direct and easy to use. You can create your own url extension like pick.co/yournamehere and it integrates with Google calendar and Office 365.

            At $3 a month, this is a great tool for quick scheduling.

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            Available on Web

            6. X.ai

              For those who are early adopters of AI, this may be the solution for you. X.ai created two AI assistants they call Amy and Andrew Ingram. After setting up your account you simply CC them on your emails with the person you’re wanting to schedule and the AI assistants will email your guests from there until your appointment is set.

              This type of scheduler feels more personal because of the dialogue. There are stories on their site of people thinking Amy and Andrew are real people. X.ai integrates with Google, Office 365 and Outlook.

              Starting at $29 a month for an Individual account and $39 a month per user for a Team account, Amy and Andrew are ready to schedule meetings for you. Want to try it out first? They do have a free trial.

              Available on Web

              7. YouCanBook.me

                is another competitive solution for scheduling meetings online. You can manage the calendars of your entire team, configure booking forms, and integrate with your calendar.

                They have a free account branded with their company name or you can have some control over your branding and appearance at $10 a month for all their features. Either way, this company is worth a look.

                Available on Web

                8. Doodle

                  Doodle is unique in the space of meeting schedulers because it helps groups of people find a time to meet that works for everyone.

                  It integrates with your calendar and allows you to send a poll to all invited. Once people vote on the poll you can see which time works best for everyone.

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                  You can also run polls for food preferences if you’re scheduling a lunch meeting or a section of town if people are coming from all over.

                  While there is a free account, you’ll unlock it’s potential starting at $39 per year.

                  Available on Web | iOS | Android

                  9. WhenAvailable

                    WhenAvailable is another scheduler that works for groups of people. You can use it to schedule a pickup game of basketball, decide on your next book club or book your family reunion.

                    Their free account allows up to 20 guests, unlimited events and one contact group. For $15 a year you unlock all the goodies including reminders and chat messages.

                    Available on Web

                    10. Rally

                      Like Doodle and WhenAvailable, Rallly is helpful for scheduling meetings and events with multiple people involved. You create a poll and everyone votes. It’s quick and easy.

                      Unlike Doodle, it doesn’t have as many features, but it’s entirely free.

                      Available on Web

                      11. NeedtoMeet

                        Finishing strong, NeedtoMeet is our last app that allows you to schedule meetings or events for multiple people. It has mobile apps, custom urls, easy polling, notifications and commenting.

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                        NeedtoMeet also allows 1:1 Meetings for things like performance reviews for your whole team. You send out the your calendar slots to your team and they can only pick 1 slot, minimizing the amount of emails and scheduling you have to coordinate.

                        While they have a free account, you can unlock all features for only $19 a year.

                        Available on Web

                        Bonus: Don’t Make These Common Mistakes When Using Meeting Schedulers

                        In the excitement of streamlining your scheduling process, it can be easy to forget the feelings of those you’re inviting to meet. I know. I’ve done this.

                        To say “Hey, schedule time on my calendar” feels colder than “Hey, here’s my calendar. To avoid all the back and forth, pick a time that works best for you.”

                        Always make sure to frame your invite with your scheduler app with the benefit to them and why we’re doing it this way rather than the old fashioned, personal way.

                        A little finesse goes a long way. Without it, you risk seeming transactional and cold.

                        Some meeting scheduler widgets you can embed in your site can take a couple seconds to load. If you go this route, make sure there’s text just above the widget that lets your guest know the calendar will appear below and to wait for it to load.

                        If you use an online meeting tool like Zoom, it’s also important to explicitly let them know the meeting will take place on Zoom and include the Zoom link in the email reminder. Many make the mistake of not clarifying where the meeting will actually take place which can create last minute chaos at the time of the meeting.

                        Should you require special settings, like ethernet, external mics or lighting, let your guests know that on your thank you page and reminder emails so they are prepared for the meeting and you end up with the best meeting possible.

                        With clear communication in your automation, your meeting scheduler tools can almost perform like a virtual assistant for a fraction of the cost, or free, depending on the app you choose.

                        The Bottom Line

                        Meeting scheduler apps are diverse in features and unique in design. Before committing to one and realizing it’s not a fit, I recommend exploring which 3 might best fit you and then doing a trial with each of them at the same time so that you can see how they feel as you use them side by side.

                        Scheduling meetings the old fashioned way can be tedious. Conversely, finding a scheduling app that works seamlessly in the background is heavenly.

                        Like cell phones, meeting scheduler apps are moving from a nice-to-have luxury to must-have necessity in the lives of productive people. As you explore your options, stay true to your brand and the tools that have worked well for you to this point and simply find a meeting scheduler app that plays well with what you have created.

                        Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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