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What is Internet Marketing?

Very simply put, internet marketing is using the internet to market your business products and services. Both websites and email, the components of the internet we’re all most familiar, can and should be used.

Websites, both your own, and others (in the form of advertisements and links) can be used to directly market and sell your products and services. On your website you promote, describe, and even sell the products and services upon which your business is built. You do this with words, images and video. On your website you are in complete control of your message. When you promote your products and services on other websites, through endorsements, free links, and paid advertisements you may have varying levels of control, from the complete control of a paid advertisement, to relative lack of control when your business is mentioned in social media such as Facebook™ or Twitter™. Your goal, as always, is to get the most favorable, the most persuasive, endorsement of you product in front of as many people as possible.

Additionally, you can promote and market your website, and use your website to promote your products. You do this with web traffic. Getting as many people as possible to visit your website. People may come directly to your website. They do this by directly entering the URL of your website into their browser. People come from other sites. They may see and add, or a reference (a link) on another website that interests them, and they “click” on the link and are transferred to your website. Finally they may come from the search engines (Google, Bing and the rest) when searching for something. With all these methods the name of the game is to drive traffic (large numbers of web visitors) to your website in the hope that some percentage will be persuaded that your product is just what they want and need right now.

Search engines may list your website in answer to a search for free, because the Google or Bing have determined that your website is best suited to addressing the search. You may target certain search for phrases on your website: we call this Search Engine Optimization, SEO for short. Google, Bing Yahoo and the others also can be paid to display an advertisement linking to your website. We call this Pay-Per-Click or ppc.

Your internet marketing goals may also be achieved with email. Some businesses (not yours surely) spray the internet with a continuous volley of junk email that only a tiny fraction of internet users actually care about. We call this spam. This is a bad thing.

A better approach is to use the email addresses of your existing customers, with their permission of course, to make them aware of special promotions, sales, and new products and services of which they may hold interest. Keeping in touch, and reminding your customers that last year, or last week, they had need of your products, may touch that need again. This can drive repeat business. Correctly used, email can help you build and maintain relationships with your customers. This is a good thing.

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