It’s not unusual at the beginning of the year to see many new businesses take their first few hesitant steps into the world of the Internet and then give up by February because ‘it didn’t work’. For some reason, the media has given us the impression that starting an Internet business is easy and quick and is the route to riches like never before. Unfortunately, this is nowhere near the truth!
Although it’s fair to say that companies like Amazon did indeed have a fairly swift rise to the top, it was by no way smooth and they only did it with a massive injection of funds and a lot of people helping to make it happen. You don’t just create a website and then suddenly be able to deliver over a million books overnight, it takes planning.
And so when you create your first web site and decide you are going to sell your product or services to all those who happen to find it, you need to be ready for a few bumps and scrapes along the way and maybe the odd failure. Most of all, you’re going to have to be ready to wait – for getting things right will take an awful lot of patience.
The first thing to remember is that anyone who finds your site, for whatever reason, will most likely never have heard of you and so you’ve got a bit of work to do on that front google web scraper. Many marketing companies say that any potential customer needs to have heard of you at least seven times before they will consider working with you – and it’s no different on the web.
In fact, it’s probably far more difficult on the web because of the fear of new technology that many people harbour. Let’s remember, many people still don’t understand how it works and have concerns about the security of such systems. When you consider that there are scare stories on the mainstream news nearly every day, it’s no surprise that people will be worried.
So the first task of any new business is to simply ‘get known’ and that involved a lot of work both off-line as well as on-line. Expecting your new web presence to make you millions in the first few days is a mistake, so you need to tackle that first.
While we’re waiting for the work to beat a path to our door though, we can begin to research how to actually tap into some of the people that are searching for our products. For this we need to do a bit of research and luckily there are lots of tools available to help us.
What you need to keep in mind is that the Internet is a little different to traditional advertising. Historically, you could only advertise to people who may be passive in their view of your advertisement. If reading a newspaper, you would hope to sow a seed into someone’s mind when they are reading and then hopefully you can get them to your product or service at a later date. But online, things are different. More than any other medium, you are actually looking to attract people who are actively seeking your products.
This, then, changes the way we work because we now need to find out what people are searching for and appeal to them directly. If we can align our offering with their search and couple it with an attractive website that they are happy to do business with then we can potentially make a sale.
First of all then, we need to do a little bit of keyword research and this is actually not as difficult as it sounds. We begin by looking at what it is our product does and try to find out what keywords we as consumers would potentially use to find it. Another way is to ask friends who I’m sure would be willing to help. Simply ask them, “if you wanted what I sell, how would you search for it”, then, write it down.
But this is only half the story because it may be that nobody else is looking for these words and so we need to find out how many times that word is searched for and only then we can make a decision as to whether it’s good enough to target as one of our terms.
To do this is deceptively simple. All you need to do is go along to Google and type in ‘Google Keyword Tool’. The first result will be the tool we need so we click on it and type some of our keywords in the big box that appears and then press ‘search’.