Web Promotion A Web Developer S Rant
Posted on 26 Aug 1999
by Dave Haynes (ElmoGallen)
Rated 3.92 (Ratings: 2)
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Web Developers have to put up with this all the time. For some reason, every single client thinks it's our fault his real estate site doesn't show up in the top ten on every search engine when he searches for "real estate." He may even refuse to pay his bill if he doesn't get a certain number of hits every day.
No matter what you tell him, he will never understand that it takes a lot of hard work to advertise and promote a web site, and it's just silly to think that responsibility can be placed on the web developer's shoulders. It's like saying, "Well, Professor Moriarty developed the formula for Aardvark Cola, so I think he'd be a great choice for making the 30 second television commercial." Not only does Dr. Moriarty, a nutritional chemist, not want to make the commercial, he has no clue HOW to make the commercial. He knows how to make it taste great, but he doesn't know how to advertise it. His commercial might be great for chemists: "If you're really thirsty, and H2O just won't cut it - why not try some carbonated water with sodium benzoate? Aardvark Cola has the perfect blend of sodium citrate, natural flavors, and citric acid to quench that thirst and also serves as a great source of corn syrup." To put it bluntly, Dr. Moriarty doesn't know a damn thing about how to sell a soft drink to a mass audience. Aardvark Cola would know this, so he would never even be considered as a candidate for marketing.
Promoting and advertising ANYTHING requires someone with both time and marketing skills - two things that few web developers possess in great quantities. Yet, the web developers are given the task of boosting the site in the search engine rankings, getting more visitors, and generating a nice buzz about the client's site. A web developer may know HOW to submit a site to a search engine, but then again, Dr. Moriarty may know how to operate a video camera, but just because he knows how it works doesn't mean he can make a good commercial. In short, don't expect the person who developed your site to be able to effectively promote and advertise it.
For those of you who are stuck in the promotion position until your clients open their eyes, you may find these resources useful:
- AltaVista: Webmaster Questions
- HotBot: How To Improve Your Site's Rankings
- InfoSeek: Guidelines and Policies
- Lycos: Tips on Adding a Site
- Excite: Improve Your Site's Ranking
- WebCrawler: Indexing Guidelines and Policy
- LookSmart: Site Submission Frequently Asked Questions
- Goto.Com: Promote Your Site (Paid Placement)
- Snap.Com: How To Submit Your Site
- Yahoo: Finding an Appropriate Category