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We may be in a global crisis of some kind–it’s anybody’s guess.  Maybe it’s a recession, maybe it’s a banking crisis or a credit crunch.  We know it’s there because we can feel it’s effects.  Most people are tightening their belts, watching costs, and planning more carefully to make sure their still here this time next year.

None of these tips is meant to be a one-time activity. They should all be continually ongoing exercises. Even if you don’t see results within weeks, don’t stop trying out ideas.

  1. Talk to Your Customers.  Also talk to people who are not your customers yet, but should be. Try to figure out what motivates them. What’s the ambition, pain, or drive that could mean they use you?
  2. Be Willing to Be Wrong. You may not get it right the first time. Acknowledge that now and get over it. Its OK, it’s just the way it is. What you have to know that you can’t know is which will work best. Ready? Good.
  3. Fix Your Bucket. Imagine your web site is a bucket, whose job it is to carry water (visitors) from a basin labelled “new visitors” to a basin labelled “customers”. You have to pay for someone to deliver water into the first basin, and you also have to pay for someone to run between the basin, carrying the water.  The bad news is, your web site is probably leaking, which means you’re losing precious water all the time. If someone can’t find the next link to carry them forward, or they get confused and think they’re in the wrong place, or they don’t know how to fill in a form, that’s a serious leak.
  4. Optimize Your Site for the Search Engines. It’s often a simple task to make your web pages more friendly to search engines. Here are a few tips for you and your designer:  *Make sure your meta description and title are readable and meaningful. *Use plenty of headings in your text ensuring that they’re meaningful and readable. *Include a sitemap. These show the search engines you’re serious and you want them to index you correctly. *Add good, fresh, interesting, relevant, keyword-rich content. *Your website should be of a good enough quality to induce other sites to link to you, but watch out for any directories. Aim to get at least 20 inbound links to your site, more is better.
  5. Invest Wisely.  Put a value on your site’s goals (which can be tracked in Analytics).  Consider:
  • What’s a new contact from a customer worth, on average?
  • How many visitors do you need today to get a new contact?
  • How much time and money can you afford to invest to get each new contact?
  • What does that work out to be in terms of additional visitors? How much can you afford to invest to get X amount of traffic?
  • How cost-effective would it be to fix your bucket to retain more visitors versus filling the funnel with more new visitors?

Once you’ve figured out your values, consider setting up AdWords pay-per-click ads (or consider Facebook’s ad platform too), which will help you attract additional qualified visitors for a guaranteed capped price.