When advertising, never do it out of emotion. When starting an advertising campaign make sure it can be tracked. Weather you pay for it or not, if you can’t track it, your wasting your time and or money. Lets say you want to start an opt-in e-mail campaign. You send out 300,000 e-mails. You get 3000 responses(by the way, that is extremely good). Where did the they come from. Why didn’t they or did they buy? If you can learn something from it that makes the next campaign better it is not a failure. By constantly analyzing and readjusting your campaigns, you can zero in on the most effective form of advertising possible for your specific business. In the words of Colin Powell, “There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.”
Most hosting companies today offer web site analysis software. Use it! I can not stress this enough. Its amazing to me how many webmasters don’t know what there highest traffic days are. How many unique visitors are you getting? What is the most popular page on your web site? What is the least? What time of day does the bulk of your visitors show? There is so much useful information that can be harvested from these programs. I had a friend of mine come to me and asked for my help. He was getting a lot of visitors to his site but they were leaving and not buying. He did know that but he should have dug deeper. After reviewing his site statistic reports I noticed that a lot of shopping carts were being abandoned. This isn’t really all that uncommon accept for the fact that 90% were being abandoned at a specific point in the check out process. I ran through the check out process myself and discovered that selecting payment page was very confusing. I let him know about it. After fixing the issue his sales went up 150%. That’s huge! How much would you pay to increase your business 150%? This is one of many examples of the potential benefits of knowing the visitor flow and behavior of your site.
Don’t let your ego get in the way. Don’t get dragged into an advertising war with a competitor. Its human nature to be competitive and that isn’t necessarily a bad thing but it can turn into a disaster if it gets the best of you. Just take a look at Google Adwords. I’ve seen certain search terms as high as $3000.00. I’ve seen businesses fold partly due to there advertising budget that had gotten out of control.