How to get repeat visitors

If your computer is anything like mine your bookmarks (favourites) list will be at least as long as your screen, crammed full of interesting (and not so interesting) links you visited way back when. Take a minute to look at a few of them, and re-visit some of these sites.

I did this exercise the other day and found 3 or 4 sites that had so much new content, yet there was no way of me knowing about it without going back to see.

How often would people re-visit your site just to see if there is new content?

There lies the crux of the matter. You can update your content as often as you like, but nobody will see it unless they come back to see.

There are two tools you have to assist you, both very different from each other.

1) The mailing list

This is a difficult one to manage. You get people to add their email address to your list in order to receive updates from you. The problem being how often is it acceptable to “update” the user, vevery post, every week, every month?

People also have a mistrust of this mechanism in terms, worried about ther email address ending up on a spam list.

2) The RSS feed

This is a better option, although requires the user to be a bit more “techno-savvy”.

Basically they use a client like Outlook or Thunderbird to subscribe to your content. They will then receive an update in their mailbox when you update your site.

This works well as it is less intrusive and they can choose to read the update as and when they like. They can even download the last few weeks and read about it on the airplane when they are flying to a meeting.

The only probem with RSS is an awful lot of people still don’t know about it, understand it, or use it. I have half a dozen RSS feeds in my Outlook and would not be without it now.

The good news

The good news is every ThinkSynergy site as of 2008 has RSS built in and is ready to go straight away. If you would like to see how RSS works just click the Orange icon on the right column and subscribe to our RSS feed.

Keep ’em coming back

Today I would like to talk about the importance of return visitors. People often talk about the amount of “hits” their website gets, but in marketing terms this is not nearly as important as return visitors, folks who invest time to come back and read what you have to say and look to see if there is anything new. In my experience people will do this once or twice after finding nothing has changed, then they will forget about your site. Don’t let this happen!

One very good way of producing a site that will get people coming back for more is to use a weblog (blog for short) to post latest news, links or comments on a regular basis. If you speak to people who have been using the Internet for a long time they will usually tell you they have a handful of sites they visit every day or two. If you can get people coming back to your site before you know it you will have a community on your site, this is where your special offers or latest product announcements really pay off!

As of 2008 we design every site around a content management interface, allowing you to login to the site and add news, alter text and freshen up the content. This changing content will keep people (as well as the search engine “bots”) coming back again and again.

Spam – how to fight it

Whether you are an Internet veteran or a fresh faced “newbie” you will undoubtedly experienced spam in your inbox at one time or another. Little blue pills, replica watches and not forgetting that bloke in Nigeria with the 3.2 billion dollar fortune he wants to share with you all club together to clutter your inbox and keep you from seeing the genuine valuable mail you have waiting for you.

There are several ways to tackle this issue. Allow me to explain.

Privacy

Firstly you should if at all possible keep your email address off your web page. If it is essential it is on there then you should “obfuscate” (encrypt) it. There are ways of doing this which I will get to later.

Never use a catch-all email address

This is worth repeating… NEVER use a catch-all email address.  Spammers often guess at your email address and blanket send to all names under the sun. If you just have 1 or 2 email addresses live then you will drastically reduce the chance of spam on your account.

Spam Assassin

This checks for tell take signs of spam and gives the mail a rating based on what it finds. You set the level at which am email is classed as spam. Spam Assassin can then either mark the header as such or delete the mail altogether.

Domainkeys and SPF records

These are a little more complicated but basically give the email address authenticity so the destination server knows the email genuinely came from where it should have. This enables the server to handle the spam issue with a little more intelligence and has proven very effective on cutting down our spam levels. Please contact us to have this enabled on your account if you are getting spam.

Spotlight – Complete Driver Training Ltd

Complete Driver training Ltd, a Harrogate based fleet driver training company, required a website plus business cards and flyers package to launch their brand into the marketplace.

CDT FlyersWe used the existing corporate logo and integrated it with a new colour scheme and branding in the website and designed the leaflet in the same style.  The leaflets were produced on 300gsm gloss art board, the heaviest weighted art board possible while still maintaining an easy fold. Full colour lithographic printing was used on both sides.

The business cards were produced on 400gsm, double sided (full colour) matt laminated art board and are very hard wearing.

As a finishing touch we produced a standard web size banner (below) for linking to the CDT site from other websites.

Complete Driver training Ltd - Fleet driver training in North yorkshire