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Five Common Small Business Website Mistakes
By: Corte Swearingen

Did you know that most small business websites generate very little traffic? Whether you have outsourced your web design or have it done in-house, it is important that your webmaster understands the basic structure and on-page criteria that will make the search engines happy. And when the search engines are happy, the result is increased targeted traffic.

Website Mistake #1: Not Building Trust

Probably the biggest mistake I see is the lack of trust-building content. If your website is filled with sales pressure tactics or doesn't offer any helpful and informative content, people will simply move on to something else. Remember, when people come to your site, they are in complete control. Give them just one reason to leave and they will.

You must earn your visitor's confidence through original, useful and compelling content. Remember, in many cases, people are coming to your site from the search engines to find information, not to make a purchase. Give them what they want.

If youíre not sure what kind of content to write about on your site, then itís time to invest in a paid keyword research tool like Wordtracker or KeyWord Discovery. These tools will help you uncover search phrases that you can then use to write page content.

Website Mistake #2: Improper On-Page Criteria

The search engines look for certain elements contained within your page. There are proactive ways you can help ensure your pages get ranked favorably. These include making sure all your META Tags are correct, your primary keyword phrase is sprinkled throughout your text, and that you include a link with your main keyword in the anchor text.

Website Mistake #3: Not Building Inbound Links

Did you know the search engines look at how many external websites have links that point to your site? If there are a lot of high-quality websites that point back to your site, the search engines see that as a vote of confidence and they will give your site more weight in the search engine rankings.

If you are constantly adding quality content to your site, it's just a matter of time before other sites start linking to yours. However, don't wait for other people to discover you - be proactive. Here are some simple ways to build links.

* Submit your site to quality directories

* Submit articles that contain a link back to your site in the Author Bio

* Provide you link partners with appropriate keyword-rich anchor text

* Answer questions in forums and blogs, providing a link in your signature file

* Work to get links that point to deeper pages within your site (not just your Homepage)

Website Mistake #4: Poor Website Structure/Navigation

Search engines will come to your website and try to collect as much information as they can for their index. Some small business owners have such haphazard website structure that it's a wonder the search engines come visiting at all. It would be sad to see all that good content go to waste because the search engines couldn't find your pages.

One highly recommended design is a three tier structure. Your Tier 1 page is your home page. Your Tier 2 pages are your navigation link landing pages. Your Tier 3 pages are the additional content pages that support the theme of the respective Tier 2 pages.

Most of your site will be comprised of these Tier 3 pages. Tier 3 pages should always link back to their respective Tier 2 parent. Likewise, all Tier 2 pages should link back to the Homepage. The search engines can easily picked up on this link structure and index your pages.

Website Mistake #5: Lack of Monetization Models

Having a compelling website that drives over 1,000 unique visitors a day is something to be proud of. But what is it worth if you are not able to capitalize on that traffic? You need to ensure you have several monetization models in place on your website so that you have multiple sources of revenue.

In addition, if you have several income streams developed, you'll be in a better position if one of them dries up for some reason. Your parents were right when they said not to put all your eggs in one basket. Several popular monetization options include selling downloadable ebooks, selling physical products, and revenue generated from affiliate sales or commissioned products.

Thereís a lot of small business websites that generate little traffic. Follow these simple strategies to make sure your site isnít one of them.

Article Source: Articles Engine

Corte Swearingen is the developer of the Integral Marketing Systemô and CEO of SmallBiz Marketing Tips. You can read additional small business web articles at Internet Marketing Tips.