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There can be zillion of reason why your visitors return to your web site. One might be very interested in seeing your animated photo on your main page, but kidding aside I've gathered 12 elements that invites your visitors to repeat their visits.
1. High-Quality Content.
We have all read that "Content Is The Thing" according to Michael Dean of Kittyfeet.com. We have not set-up our website to just fill-it with endless links of your favorites but we're there to discuss what can we contribute to the web. Fill it with regularly-updated quality content and they'll return asking for more.
2. Ease Of Use.
We have all heard of "user-friendly" computers and softwares. Why not do the same to our web site. Provide a navigation bar that's easy (and fun) to use forgetting the fancy stuff.
3. Quick To Download.
Assume your web site is going to be viewed by the oldest browser, slowest modem and limited number of palettes.
4. Updated Frequently.
You have prepared high-quality content but the problem is you only update it once a year. Set a realistic goal first that at the least you'll bring new content to it once a month and then increase the frequency.
5. Rewards, Contest and Incentives.
Make sure your visitors enjoy a very "rewarding" visit to your site and expect him to return or just remind him to get his prize, reward or a mention of his name in your monthly newsletter. He'll sure return. Contest is one great idea. Email me on this one and I'll give you the free code.
6. Favorite Brands.
We all know zdnet.com is the site for free downloads, cnn.com for up-to-the-minute customizable news. Why not link to them? Do you know that zdnet.com offers link partnership? (I don't get money from this one, folks :-)) I know a site that just updates their visitors on what's happening to over 200 branded ezines and you know what visitors like it and return.
7. Cutting-edge Technology.
We can't all compete with this category but I'm sure there are lots of software out there to simplify the task. So grab one!
Online game sites are becoming famous nowadays. Visitors too need sometime to play online. Give what they need and they'll ask you for more.
9. Purchasing Capabilities.
Web surfers also shop around and they're looking for convenience on how to do it. Be the first one to do it for them. Add a shopping cart of some sort to your web site and it would be better if you can accept credit cards online.
10. Customizable Content.
Try to create a simple database (Excel of MS Access would do) and connect it on your web site. Every visitor will have its own content and experience. An example of this is planetit.com (tell them I referred you, just enough to receive thank you from them, yes, no money involved here either.)
11. Chat and BBS.
Message Board or interactive forums replaces BBS (bulletin board system) nowadays. Even I have one on my web site (just to make sure) and I'm amazed at the number of visitors from around the globe who post on it. Just make sure you get their email addie so you can reply.
12. Freebies, Jokes and Quotes.
I don't know about this but I've received return visits on this one. I even got a search engine for jokes on my site and people return just to read jokes. These same people who spent coniderable amount of money reading jokes and quotes will soon ask for a price quote.
You know studies have shown that it takes 4 to 5 visits for a person before he sets his eyes on what you can offer. A simple element (but it's not included on the 12 elements I've mentioned) is just to place a text on your web site (bold letters, not caps) saying "Please bookmark this site" can go a long, long way.
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