Friday, April 4, 2008

Being realistic about visitor numbers

The Internet and websites and blogs is still growing exponentially so being realistic on how many visitors your blog or site will attract is a fact of life below are some of the factors that come into play.

Age of website, blog or page
The search engines are inundated with websites and blogs trying to make a fast buck and one of the many ways they deal with it is by looking how long the page has been online ( some webmasters will create a new site each week with 100,000 pages in the hope they will make loads of money they are not trying to provide anything useful or informative just to make money . This is one of the main reasons that search engines use age as one of the main defining factors , If the content is good and over 12 months gains a number of natural links from other websites the search engines will give more credibility to that site / page / blog
This phenomenon is sometimes referred to as the sandbox effect and the more competitive the words you are hoping for traffic from the deeper the sandbox

Other links to website, blog or page
As you can see from the item above the SE's expect your new site to gain a number of natural links over time ( sometimes they even help by putting your page high in the results for a day or a week to see if natural links occur ) so you might see loads of traffic for couple of days maybe in the beginning or could even be suddenly for no reason ( this is where social networking sites tags can be useful as it can be a link but also can create other links

How well the page is Search Engine Optimized
SEO is a difficult question to answer so my honest advice is write for your visitors

How many other sites pages are targeting the same words
This is where the going gets tough the more sites targeting the words the harder to compete lets take as an example CAR INSURANCE . as anybody knows this is a cut throat industry and as such website pages number millions so don't expect to compete very well on that type of keyword

How interesting and well written the content on the page is
This is at the core of success or failure if you provide something interesting and informative from your perspective the chances that people will read or link or bookmark or email to a friend is much better and although you may not get as many visitors as your page deserves it will provide a platform for long term growth

How much you have spent on promotion
I am afraid the Internet is now such big business that the amount of money / time spent on promotion is a big factor in weather you will be successful .
Below are some of the ways to spend money and help your website be found / linked to

1 Directory Submissions
2 Paying for a review of your website
3 Paying for Visitors from somewhere like StumbleUpon
4 Adwords / Yahoo Search Marketing / Microsoft ADDS
5 Paying for banners
6 Affiliate traffic
7 pay for links on other sites which might send you traffic ( be careful with this as SE's are cracking down on some areas of paying for links )

Free Website Promotion
I have covered this on earlier post including some basic ideas for link building and social network tagging so I will not go into it here again

The main object of this post is to help you realize there are some things you can do to help get more visitors but some you can't and that patience is a virtue for visitors the same as most other things in life

The Most Important Website Promotion Tool

By far in my opinion the most important fact in building long term traffic is visitors who decide the information, content and style of writing is great that they add your page to their favorites or tell others or send emails or even just tell friends in the pub as this is how the Internet started and can still today provide as much traffic as search engine queries


Google The King Of The Internet

Google is still the undisputed king of Search and with many of the companies they have purchased and the additions to the portfolio are becoming the Undisputed King Of The Internet

Google Search still the best search ( sometimes takes a while to catch up with spammers but does do eventually )

Google News ( To search local news but honestly seems to be lacking many great sources ) maybe should be combined to use the best news blogs and there are some great ones

Google Images ( simple and quite powerful but I think ASK is slightly better now )

You Tube ( With problems re: Copyright ) But the epitome of Web 2 whatever that is?

Feed burner ( Will most likely become the standard in Feed Technology )

AdWords ( Advertising for all on a semi-simple platform )

Reader Simple To Use for anybody and everybody

AdSense ( Allow the ordinary webmaster to pay towards his hobby and the very large sites to monetize easily)

Blogger ( Blogging for the ordinary man and easy to use, my wife non techy gets so much pleasure from blogging about her horses )

Google Maps ( Of them all this is I think the best as easy to use and will provide a great income stream later through local advertising )

Gmail has now set the standard that all the others will need to match or better free but financed through low profile advertising

GTALK this has not become the standard yet but when combined with free Internet access through VOIP may dominate the market

Google Apps ( this is the Microsoft killer if it does make major inroads into the Business arena )

Picasso Not as good as some of the other offerings but close enough not to be dismissed

and finally to protect it's core product
Google Customised Search ( not fully there yet but may provide Google with a good additional base of trusted resources ) and real people with knowledge in the subject are creating this knowledge base for free long way to go but could be the spammers worst enemy together with The Google Toolbar