Free Ebook: I Hate My Website!: 10 Easy Ways to Improve Your Website Plus 9 Disastrous Moves to Avoid

Sometimes I wonder if I should keep giving you information on web site building? But then I think about the 2.5 types of small businesses who read this email Smallbiztechnology.com.
Many of you have web sites that are just fine. You really know what you are doing. However, it can’t hurt to be kept informed of ways to improve.
A LOT of you have web site but they are really not so good looking. You need to be hounded and hounded on how to make your web site better.
Then there’s a few of you who don’t have web sites – yet. I won’t even comment further.
Microsoft’s Office live is offering you a free ebook on building web sites (or making a current one better).
The eBook, available on OfficeLive.com, provides the following tips for improving a Web site:
Have a basic plan. Before starting a Web site, ask yourself these key questions: Who are my customers? What are they looking for? What are my competitors doing? What do I want to get out of this Web site?
Keep it simple. Do not cram your Web site with features and information that may make it slow to load and difficult to read. If users cannot easily find what they are looking for, they will look elsewhere. Users will appreciate a fast-loading, informative and easy-to-use site.
Pay attention to content. A Web site is one of the best ways for businesses to highlight themselves without any marketplace interference. While you can be creative with your Web site, make sure it includes some basic information such as About Us, Contact Us, Testimonials, News/Announcements and Media Coverage. These sections are your chance to promote your business’ strengths, core competencies and differentiating factors from the competition.
Update frequently. Nobody likes going to a Web site that has months-old information. If content is not updated, why would customers want to return? New content is easy to create through formats such as blogs, surveys and polls, and newsletters.
Pay attention to the users. Tracking customers might seem difficult, but it is actually fairly easy. All Web-hosting companies should be able to provide free reports about site traffic. This data can show important trends, such as where site visitors are coming from, how long they stay on the site, and what your site’s most popular pages are. This information can then inform future revisions to your site.
Attract users. Most search engines easily allow you to submit a Web site to their database so that the site will appear in search results. Look for the “Add URL” or “Submit your site” buttons. To make sure the site does not appear at the bottom of the results, focus on including as many relevant keywords and links as possible into the content of the site. Paid search, or “keyword” advertising, is another way to drive traffic to the site.

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Ramon Ray, Editor & Technology Evangelist, Smallbiztechnology.com . Editor and Founder, Smart Hustle Magazine Full bio at http://www.ramonray.com . Check him out on Google Plus, Twitter or Facebook