Relying on search engines to drive traffic on this alone as an online marketing strategy has some drawbacks. Consider:
|-||If you're starting a new business or just need to see results quickly, the time it takes for a new website to get picked up by search engines then prolonged process of improvements and testing may be too long|
|-||The more competition you have, the more difficult it will be|
|-||It's unlikely that you'll be able to rank well every imaginable phrase your prospective customers might use (no to mention the ones you haven't thought of) |
|-||You don't have the knowledge or time to spend tinkering with your website (or money to pay someone elsew to do it)|
|-||Because you're #1 one day doesn't necessarily mean you'll be #1 tomorrow|
Don't stop improving your website content and getting links from friends and so on (see Promoting your website), but if you need to give your online presence a boost, consider paying for it.
In most cases, the advertisement will direct the interested party to the vedor's website. So, these become an alternative way to drive traffic to your website, without having to be at the mercy of the search engines.
There are a variety of forms online advertising can take, some of which are quite similar to offline advertising (e.g. directory listings, which are quite similar to the phone book or banner ads, which are quite similar to billboards or other ads you might casually encounter in magazines or newspapers.)
Others are quite new, such as contextual advertising (the sponsored links you see above or adjacent to the natural search results, for example). We might expect new innovations in advertising as the internet evolves.
Furthermore, there are various ways that these can be charged. You might pay on the basis of the number of times it is dispayed, on the number of people who click on the ad, on the enquiries or sales it generates, or on a simple monthly or annual rate.
In some cases, the link might also help the ranking of your website in search engines that take into account the links you get from other websites. (Look for publishers of quality, on-topic websites offering ordinary hyperlinks.)
Spend a little time surfing the net and look at what other businesses are doing. maybe you can find something that suits your style of business and advertising budget.
Modern Garden Marketing is a collection of news, opinion, information and resources for those working inside the Australian garden and landscape industry in the 21st century. Start Here