Building your online business is an exciting time for new entrepreneurs. It is also a time for learning lots of new skills and developing a business mentality that will help you to build your new business into something that will be a source of income for you. I am often asked what advice I would give on internet marketing for the beginner so I thought I would add a few posts with tips on what I have learned myself over the years.
Rookie Mistake – Being a “Jack of all trades”
OK, so you have picked your niche and started to create a website by adding content such as blog posts, reviews of products, training videos and podcast recordings. This is a great start.
One day a new idea comes to you for developing your business by adding information on another topic which is a bit different but still related to the main theme of your site.
A little while later you decide to further develop your site by creating content on yet another topic. Again it is closely related to your original site topic – in so far as it falls within the same overall niche.
This is all great – right? After all you are showing the breadth of your knowledge and expertise in more than one area. Surely that must be a good way to get visitors to like and trust you?
The answer is – Maybe…
While on the face of it you might think that having a range of teachings or offerings on your site is a sign of expertise it has actually been shown that promoting too many different categories of products or services from one website can result in fewer sales?
Let’s say you are building a website in the digital marketing niche and on that site you offer a blog writing service, a web page building service and a social media advertising service.
One day a visitor comes to your site. He found you in Google through searching for a “Facebook advertising service”. First of all – Congratulations! Your SEO is obviously good and you have attracted a visitor to your site through good keyword optimisation.
However, after taking a look around your site he leaves without placing an order for your services.
After leaving your site he goes to another site which is all about creating effective Facebook ads. He decides to place his order here on this site instead of yours.
What do you think went wrong and why did he make his decision to place his order on your competitor’s site?
The problem may well be that your website didn’t offer the exact solution that he was looking for and wasn’t fully focused on his specific needs. The customer was looking for a service to help with Facebook ads. When he came to your site he found lots of great content on social media advertising which of course includes Facebook ads but also includes Twitter ads, Pinterest ads and other social media strategies.
He also found lots of content on other digital marketing topics too. His overall impression may have been that your site didn’t focus on Facebook ads, which was what he wanted and so decided to find somewhere specialising in just Facebook ads.
Your competitor had a site specifically on Facebook ads and so he chose the site which focused on his specific needs.
The Solution – Micro sites!
Rather than add several different services or products on your website (even if they fall under the same umbrella niche) it might be better to create a micro site for each one.
Please don’t be confused by the term “micro site.” A micro site might actually contain hundreds of pages of information – the important thing is that all of the information is targeted to one very specific micro niche and has nothing on the site relating to any other topic.
You can even break it down even further within a niche. Let’s say you offer consulting services for both individuals as well as larger businesses. Rather than have it all on one website, it might be beneficial to create individual websites for each different type of client.
Why are Micro Sites so Effective?
- Your offer will convert better on a micro site, for the simple reason that because your site is focused solely on one particular topic, you become viewed as an expert on that topic, service or product. People stop viewing you as a jack of all trades who knows a little about lots of things. Instead, they see you as an authority figure who has a wealth of knowledge or experience on the topic. Rather than talking generally about various topics within a niche, you are speaking directly to what the prospect is looking for which makes it more likely that they will trust and buy.
- Because your website is wholly devoted to just one specific subject it makes it much easier to get higher rankings in the search engines. If your site has only one topic then it is easier to make it into an authority on that particular topic which is attractive for search results.
- It also has the advantage that if you have expertise in several different but closely related areas then you can create a micro site for each. If you run out of ideas on a particular topic or just grow bored with it, then you can consider selling on that particular site while still maintaining ownership of your other micro sites. It also means that if one of your sites runs into difficulties – for example falls foul of one of Google’s regulations – the effects on that site won’t affect the performance of your other websites.
Building a Micro Site Business
As with any other digital business, the key to making the micro site strategy work is commitment to regularly creating lots of content for each site. Getting to grips with SEO and basing your writing around focus keywords is what will eventually bring good rankings in the search engines.
Another important aspect of the micro site strategy is to ensure your domain name for each site is chosen around a good keyword for the subject on the site. Unless you are well-known personally within your niche, it’s not a good idea to include your name within the domain name. If your business caters mostly to a local audience then you might consider adding a city or region to the domain name to help boost the rankings.
Blogging regularly on the topic of your micro site is a great way to build trust and confidence in your potential customers. People like to see that a website is regularly updated with good quality, helpful information. This not only helps to boost your rankings but also helps the person to make the decision that you are the expert they are looking for.
It’s an inescapable fact that micro sites are the best way possible to attract targeted customers into your business which is of course what we all want to get more of.
Being able to show your range of skills and knowledge is nice but it’s not what someone with a specific need is looking for. If you show you are a specialist on that subject by building a micro site focused entirely on that subject then you will dramatically increase the conversions on your site.
Sounds nice, doesn’t it?!