I’ve been blogging now for 3.5 years, but I’ve had websites since 1995. Over all the years that I’ve been a webmaster I’ve learned how important it is to promote your site.
Now back in 1995 when I started my first website it was a heck of a lot easier to promote your site. There was less competition and since my website was in a very specific niche I was able to join (and fully participate) in forums specific to the topic, which of course, was a great way to inform people about my site.
Every time I start a new site I also make sure that I get it listed in Google, Yahoo, MSN and basically all of the best web directories that I can submit my site to for free. I’ve never paid for site submissions. I just don’t feel it’s worth it. However getting your site listed in a general directory or even better one that’s specific to your sites niche is still important and worth spending some time doing.
Over the last couple of years I’ve read that Google doesn’t give as much credit for directory listings as it once did – but hey, a link is a link, right? Plus if people are actually visiting a website directory to find sites that discuss specific topics it’s another way to get a few new visitors.
When it comes to blogs one of the best ways to promote your site is to visit other blogs and leave comments on their posts. If you leave a decent comment that adds to the conversation not only will the blog owner be more likely to visit your site, but so will some of their readers.
I used to be really good about commenting on other blogs. Over the last year or so I’ve fallen behind on commenting on my favorite sites and posts. I still visit my favorite bloggers and the blogs of those who leave comments but I just don’t seem to have the time anymore to concentrate on visiting sites and leaving comments. I guess I have too many sites to maintain and of course my health problems get in the way too.
It’s a shame because commenting on other blogs is a great way to build a community, get new visitors and of course get back links to your site. I really have to figure out a way to make more time to visit and comment on the posts I enjoy.
What do you do to promote your website or blog? Do you do the basics that I’ve suggested above? Have you ever paid to be listed in a directory or elsewhere?