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Focus Your Web Site… Or Get Out Of Business

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Last November, I was jumping up and down absolutely excited about my new idea. I was going to create a web site filled with articles, links and resources on just about any topic you could imagine. This way no matter who finds my site and for whatever reason they click on it, I will always make money, right?

So, I spent time collecting and writing articles on health, beauty, business, finance, insurance, parenting, and computers, joined a gazillion of affiliate programs for each topic and finally launched my HelpingFoot.com.

Three months later I made exactly zero income! I wrote to several e-zine publishers asking for advice. They told me my web site has too much to offer – visitors just don’t know where to start, and what direction to go.

“Yeah, right”, I thought. “What do they know? After all, with so many articles and resources my visitors will surely find something to do!”

I was terribly wrong, and I am glad I realized it before wasting more of my time. I had to do something to make this site profitable. But what?

I re-designed my HelpingFoot.com completely. But first I asked myself what I want my visitors to do: order my products? sign-up for my newsletter? read articles? visit my web forum?

You see, when you know exactly what you want your visitors to accomplish on their first visit, you are more likely to come up with a good design.

Since I already had two other web sites devoted to direct selling, I decided to use this one entirely for opt-in mailing list by capturing my visitors’ e-mails.

1) I removed all the links to irrelevant articles and focused the entire site around web design for beginners.

2) Those old articles are still there (hey, they generated a lot of general traffic from the Search Engines!), but are not linked to from the homepage.

3) I created a small pop-up window that asks for my visitors e-mails

4) Placed a sign-up form right on my home page, and linked to another page called “free newsletter” in case my visitors come from a page other than my home page.

5) I have also created an attractive cartoonish logo for my newsletter.

6) Every past issue of my newsletter includes a sign up form at the bottom so people can subscribe right after reading it.

Can you guess what happened?

The number of people signing up for my newsletter tripled! I went from 20 subscriptions a week to 60 – in just a few days. This means that every month my list will grow by approximately 240 people! And every self-respecting successful marketer has a growing list to announce new products and offers, test marketing strategies, and develop a close relationship with their subscribers.

Now, if I wanted to make my web design forum as the main focus of HelpingFoot.com, for example, I would emphasize it right on the home page: with graphics, links and incentives.

So, ask yourself now: what is my “Most Wanted Response”? Then make sure your entire web site is centered around this goal. With the right amount of quality traffic, I guarantee you will accomplish that goal.

Milana Nastetskaya is a full time web developer and the author of the “65 Instant Web Design Answers”. http://www.instantwebanswers.com

Focus Your Web Site… Or Get Out Of Business
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