By Carolyn Edlund
How’s your art website doing, traffic-wise? Want to drive more visitors, and more customers to your site? You might be a beginner, but there are lots of ways to gain traffic effectively that don’t take a ton of experience as a webmaster. Some are incredibly simple.
- First, evaluate your website. You should have Google Analytics giving you stats that monitor and can help you improve your site and your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) through more effective use of keywords. Go to Alexa to see how your site ranks among all the other sites out there. As you expand the number of visitors and links into your website, you will see your rank improving.
- Next, check out Hubspot’s Website Grader. They will give you a rating, and suggest good ways to beef up your site and attract more visitors. Check out Blog Grader while you’re there.
- High page rank on Google is important for search engine purposes, and Google likes active sites. This means that frequent updates will help you. Sure, you may have your professional information and your gallery on the website, but adding a blog which is consistently updated and contains lots of links is a definite plus. About those links – you should link to lots of other sites, but also add “deep links” which lead to other pages within your own site.
- Here’s a simple technique. Add an automatic signature to your email, which lists your web page. This provides a link to everyone you send an email to, every time.
- Make it a priority to get backlinks. Links to your site from other sites will drive a lot of traffic and gain publicity. Commenting on other blogs, especially really popular blogs in your niche will create links to your own page. Always select “name/URL” to comment, and make insightful comments that may make readers curious and want to find out about you. Or ask a question that will spur more discussion.
- Another way to get backlinks? Give links to other websites. Find sites that you really like and want to help promote. Contact the owner and let them know you have linked to them. They won’t always link back, but often they will, creating ways for people to find you.
- Want to know where other successful artists are linking? Here’s a great way to find out, and it’s not unethical. Make a list of the artists you admire and their web addresses. Go to Yahoo and enter this into the search box: linkdomain:www.nameofotherartistwebsite.com. All of their backlinks will come up! You might decide that sites which feed into theirs would be a good place to make a blog comment, or even advertise.
This is just a start to getting publicity for your site which will lead to visitors, and customers. A terrific resource for artists, or any businessperson with a website, is Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs (The New Rules of Social Media) by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah. It’s a must-read to become as effective as possible in promoting yourself online.