Web Marketing Basics

An important notion that should stick throughout all of your web-learning and online efforts is that marketing online doesn’t depend on just aesthetics, usability or search engine optimization, customer management or traffic analysis. Rather it is a culmination of these which influence each other, so no element should be overlooked when trying to measure success, thinking up new ideas or making lasting changes.

For a straightforward reference point, below is a table of some common areas necessary to develop and maintain an effective site. You can use this as a ‘shopping list’ when considering site changes or wish to measure the success of just about anything of yours online. It is also handy to keep these in mind when figuring out how well your competitors do things. Don’t worry if you’re not 100% sure on what all of these mean as we will go over them soon!
Inside your website           
    Usability
How easily visitors can find and use what they’re looking for on your site. How straight forward the information is and whether the traffic is going where you directed it.
    Aesthetics 
Whether or not visual assets of your site fit together well and are attractive. Where the user’s eye is attracted to. How memorable your site is, how well it reflects your business and brand. Ties in with usability.
    Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)     
Effects the likelihood that people will be able to find your site (mostly through Google) when they are looking for your business / industry / products / services or anything else related to what you want to offer them.
Analytics
Tells you what has happened on your site. See statistics on who visited, what they saw, when and where they left and how they got to your site in the first place all according to a chosen timeframe. This way you can track the success of changes shortly after they are made and substantiate new ones.

Outside your website
    Community Management
Helping users with questions, complaints or queries whilst representing your brand and voice. Building a strong and visible rapport.
    Social Media
         
Extending the reach of any campaigns and creating discussion. Ties in directly with community management. Relatively quick and cost effective. Most popular examples are Facebook and Twitter.
    Electronic Direct Marketing (EDM)
Direct Marketing efforts via email. This is predominantly used to communicate offers and new products /services but also includes newsletter updates about any changes, sharing or commenting on industry news and any automatic mail that helps people use your site and services.

To Do for my Business
        Taken note of the above areas that I have / haven’t considered or used before.
        Do a 20 minute search on my main competitors, how do they compare with their Social Media, Aesthetics and Usability?