From Back2Front - The Web Site People
September 2008 - Vol 2, Issue 3
In This Issue
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In the last issue I included a link to my new article in the Further Reading section of about the benefits of having multiple domain names. Many of our clients contacted us after receiving that issue to request additional domains for their web sites!

It is gratifying to know that subscribers to this newsletter (nearly 600 of you now) are reading and benefiting from this newsletter!

Web site promotion is so crucial to success that I include at least one tip in every newsletter. I hope you like this month's tip. If you have not acted on all of our tips yet, or missed a newsletter, check out our Newsletter Archive.

Our goal at Back2Front is to help you get the most from your web site!

  - Candace Carter

PS: Book me to speak at your next event!

Why is your home page so important?
Your home page is important because it is the page on which the crucial decision is made: Is this web site relevant?

Internet surfers often plow through vast amounts of irrelevant content to find the information they seek. Though search engines do help to narrow down the search, it often takes several false leads before finding the site(s) they want. To keep this process efficient, visitors will typically rely only on the home page to decide: "Is this web site relevant?"

If your home page does not supply the information a potential client will need to make a decision to stay on the site, in a way that can be easily and quickly assimilated, then your home page has failed its most important task. So what should be on your home page?
Read on...

Web sites are passive in nature. They do not actively draw people in all by themselves. You have to send people to your web site, or prospects have to be actively looking for your product or service. A company newsletter is a very good way to promote your web site in a more proactive way. Newsletters allow you to remind people about your existence and direct them to your web site on a regular basis. It is also a fantastic, non-intrusive, and automatic way to keep in contact with leads for new business that are not quite ready to buy, or to help keep in contact with your current clients.

Of course you do have to have something to say. I recommend a quarterly newsletter. Doing a newsletter quarterly does not wear out your welcome to your recipients' email box, and does not demand too much of your time coming up with content. The newsletters do not have to be long, just relevant and useful to your readers.

To do a newsletter well, you need a specialist to handle the list management and mail-out for you. Do not try to run a newsletter from your home PC using your regular email program. You risk angering your recipients by accidentally sending duplicates or forgetting to remove opt-outs from your list. Additionally, your ISP will most likely have anti-spamming rules that you will run afoul of. All this will have you wasting your time on tasks much more efficiently done the professional way.

We recommend Constant Contact. We use them to send you this newsletter. They are very reasonable in cost, and excellent in customer service and support.

To help you get your newsletter looking like your web site we offer a "Newsletter customization package."
For more details see the "Extras" page of our website.
Total Hits(July/08):5184
Human Hits:868
Unique Human Visitors:271
Real examples of web site issues and how Back2Front's on-going management service works to solve them.

Let's examine a web site we manage that was launched earlier this year. This is a good functional web site with lots of excellent content in the Services section. The hits statistics for the site have increased nicely for a web site of this size and type from approximately 300 hits in April to over 5000 in July. However, the client is concerned that not enough of these hits are converting into sales.

For many of our clients, converting visitors to sales (conversion rate) is an important goal for their web site. We provide detailed monthly statistics reports that can help determine conversion rates - if you know how to interpret them! To calculate conversion rates, the most useful statistic is not the Total Hits, but the number of Unique Human Visitors.

Unique Human Visitors is the total number of hits, with robots and duplicate hits from the same source, removed. This gives a better idea of the number of people looking at your site. In this case, (not unusual for a new site) less than 300 people visited the site in July.

Knowing that relatively few real people are visiting the site changes the strategy from working on the conversion rate as a primary goal, to working on the web site's traffic first. Then work on the conversion rate by turning as many of them into customers as possible.

Ultimately, the way to increase traffic to any site is... marketing. One component of a company's marketing efforts that Back2Front can assist with is search engine optimization. For this particular site, we noticed that although this company provides a local service, the only mention of the location is a fairly vague "Southern Ontario". Chances are that people looking for this service will not search on "Southern Ontario". They will most likely search on their city or town. One of our first recommendations therefore, is to add specific service locations prominently on the home page.

To help with the conversion rate we recommend adding benefit statements to the home page. Visitors may be thinking of inspection services only when they buy or sell, and may not be aware of other benefits of the service. We recommend adding some good benefit copy that is short and snappy, to encourage visitors to call sooner - something like...

Is your home making you sick?
Delroy Inspections can find the hidden causes of illness in your home.
If your family members are not feeling their best, call us for a free consultation.
Call 519-555-1234 and get a healthier home for your family today!

There is no substitute for good marketing and a strong business plan. However, a company's web site constitutes a significant part of their communications with their target market, so optimizing it for performance is important. We will be working with Delroy Inspections over the next few weeks to help them make informed decisions about their web site, provide our detailed recommendations (more that we have space for here), and implement changes to the site, all as part of our ongoing management service.

Volunteer your site for our next Case Study!

Upcoming presentations:

E-commerce - How to sell directly from your web site.
Pickering Public Library
Evening Business Seminar
Wednesday September 17th, 6:30 to 8:30pm
Members of the public are welcome. Admission is free.

The 10 Biggest Web Design Mistakes and How to Avoid Them!
Aurora Chamber of Commerce
Lunch and Learn
Tuesday November 18th, 12:00 to 1:30pm
Cost for Potential Members: $25
Here are a few of our most recent clients and their respective web sites:

Check out Our Portfolio page for more examples...
Please let me know how you like this newsletter, or if you have suggestions for future issues. I would love to hear from you!

Candace Carter
Back2Front - The Web Site People

Phone: 1-888-227-9092 ex 705
Web Site:

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