I want Free Advertising!
So you`ve got your website all set up. You know what
you`re promoting and it`s looking good. You know you
need to advertise and promote as much as possible to
actually get your website seen. You`ve tried the
normal avenues such as classified ads, safelists,
ffa`s. etc, but now you`re ready to try something
There IS another way of getting free advertising.
It`s called Bartering. It basically means to exchange
goods and/or services without using money.
Bartering, also known as Trading, Exchange or Ad
Swapping comes in all shapes and sizes. Many small
sites use banner exchanges as a way to reach more people.
Ezines often swap sponsorships in an effort to gain
more subscribers etc.
The terms of a trade are usually only limited by the
creativity of those taking part. The main consideration
is to make sure it ties in with the goals of the site.
Also, making sure that everybody involved has a clear
understanding of the agreement details.
Here`s a list of 5 different ways to "ad-swap" for free.
Basically, this is where 2 sites agree to show a
link to each other. This can work wonders for search
engine ranking, so long as the site you swap links
with is relevant to your site. To find potential
linkswap partners for free, do a search on say
www.google.com for sites similar to yours. Mail the
webmaster a nice friendly mail, telling them what
you like about their site, and asking if they might
be interested in exchanging links with you. Don`t
worry if some of them say no, keep trying, and you`ll
be surprised at how many will actually say yes.
In laymans terms, the concept behind a banner exchange
is "I`ll put your ads on my site, if you`ll put my
ads on yours". Banner exchanges are differnt to
simple link swaps in terms of how many potential
site visitors can be reached. Members of large
banner exchanges have the potential for their ads
to be shown on thousands of other sites. Also,
unlike simple link swaps, banner exchanges result
in your ads rotating through many many different
sites, sometimes with the benefit of sophisticated
Here are some free banner exchanges for you to check out:
Button exchanges are similar to banner exchanges in
all ways apart from the size of the graphic displayed.
Button exchanges usually have smaller membership
numbers than banner exchanges. As a result, they tend
to come and go, with very few of them lasting and/or
become much used. Some niche exchanges, particularly
webmaster related, have used the micro-button (88x31)
effectively. While small in size, the micro-buttons
allow a site to earn more views (and credits) per page.
Text Link Exchange This is pretty much the same as
reciprocal link swapping, apart from here there`s a
whole Network of sites, where all participants display
text ads in exchange for credits which are converted
into ads to be displayed on other sites.
Web Rings are basically a group of like-minded sites
all linking to each other. Web rings are usually made
up of small/midsize sites. The number of web rings
and member sites runs into the millions. A web ring
can be created on just about any topic, by just about
anybody. After creating a ring, the ring owner is
responsible for attracting and approving applicants.
Approved sites become part of the web ring.
Navigating through webrings is normally done by
using the "next", "previous" "random site" and
"complete list" links. The first original web ring
system, which is now part of Yahoo! is still the most
popular and can be found here: www.webring.org/
Web Site Award:
A Web Site Award is basically an award given from
one Web site to another, as a means of creating
linkswaps. They range from great big events like
the Webby Awards: www.webbyawards.com/ to thousands
of smaller sized link exchanges from small sites.
A lot of the Web site awards are really more about
attracting site visitors than they are about
competition. Sites that GET awards hope to attract
visitors from the award sites, and sites that GIVE
awards hope to attract visitors from the recipient
And there you have it. Maybe not the easiest ways
of getting free advertising, but most definitely
not the hardest. Try them out, see what works, and
stick with it. Remember, as with all advertising,
you need to do a lot of research, homework, and
testing to find out what`s right for you.
Good luck in your promotions!
About the author:
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