I'm often asked "now that I've got a website - what should I do next?" So I thought it might be helpful to list some simple ways to start promoting your website.
The best way to promote your business online is to get your website as high up the search engine (ie. Google or Yahoo) rankings as possible. But this isn't easy, because everybody wants to be on Page 1.
Google uses over 200 fancy algorithms to determine where websites appear on their search engine results, and nobody really knows exactly what they all are because Google keeps them secret. Google's goal is to be the best search engine out there, so that more people will use their paid services such as Google Adsense, so it's in their best interests to provide the best results for people who perform searches. So if an SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) company contacts you and makes promises about Page 1, it would pay to do some research before immediately signing on.
WebSolutionZ don't offer specialised SEO because frankly, SEO companies have the expertise, resources and time to do it better. However, I have a friend who is an SEO specialist who's given me several pointers, so I thought I'd start with Quality Links.
Basically - if a site that Google considers to be important, links to you, then it makes you look better. One of the algorithms that Google uses is Page Rank (PR). In Australia, some of the sites with a higher PR include theage.com.au, ebay.com.au and news.com.au/heraldsun/. If you're able to get your website listed on a site with a high PR, this is considered to be a quality link, and Google will reward you.
The easiest way to start adding quality links, is to list your website on some directory sites. Below are some free directory sites I've found that may be worth listing your website on. There are obviously hundreds and it pays to be discerning - if Google doesn't like it then your site may be better off without having a link from there!
Not all of these will be relevant to your business but some are definitely worth a look:
http://www.dmoz.org - the Open Directory project.
http://www.banyulebusiness.com.au/ (this is my local council and I think you need to live here to register, but check your local council for similar)
Obviously you can also pay to add your website address to some paid sites. Make sure you investigate the costs etc. carefully, to ensure you're getting the "most bang for your buck".
One of the best ways to get a quality link is to get yourself interviewed somewhere! In 2008 I was involved in a small business with a friend and we managed to get ourselves onto A Current Affair. Our website went crazy for the next week but most importantly - that video and our website address stayed on their website for several years, and was one of the Page 1 links that came up when searching for our business name. As a result of that we also got calls from journalists who were looking for quotes for a story. You just can't buy publicity like that.
Got questions? Feel free to drop me a line. :-)