Your Relationship with Your Subscribers

This is the last in a series of five posts about promoting your website locally.

When people visit your site they will join your email list if they find your site content of  helpful.  So, you need to focus  on your offer to your subscribers.

You can offer additional material through an email sequence, email broadcasts or downloads (perhaps in a password protected part of your site).  Some sites charge and others offer content for free.  Offering free material to subscribers encourages them to join your email list.  This means you can tell them when you add new material to your site.

If visitors can comment then it is worth notifying your email list when there is something new to share.  Other reasons may be you want to recruit visitors to a cause or sell them a product or service.

Good content is also a reason for other sites to link to yours.  If people link their site to yours, this increases its chances of showing up in a search.  Links to pages and blog posts increase the online presence or authority of your site.  As more people visit your site, they are likely to sign up to your list.

Resist the temptation to link back to these sites unless you really want to recommend their content.  Reciprocal links have a mutual advantage as both sites experience increased traffic.  However there are two disadvantages to reciprocal links.  First, search engines ignore them because closely related sites often have this arrangement.  Also, if you have many miscellaneous links for no reason other than misguided politeness your site will become cluttered.

Take a back-link to your site as a complement, by all means acknowledge it and thank the people  who set it up but only return the favour where it will really help.

That completes my suggestions for now about increasing local traffic to your website.  There are more ways than the ones I’ve touched upon and I’ll return to the topic from time to time.  If you have any ideas, do share them in the comments.  This is a fascinating area and it would be good to build up a resource of ideas, especially ones that can be shown to work!

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About the Author

I've been a community development worker since the early 1980s in Tyneside, Teesside and South Yorkshire. I've also worked nationally for the Methodist Church for eight years supporting community projects through the church's grants programme. These days I am developing an online community development practice combining non-directive consultancy, strategic management, participatory methods and development work online and offline. If you're interested contact me for a free consultation.

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