Q and A: Why am I getting so few visitors to my site?

QuestionHi Kalena,

Help! I’ve had my Hightower pottery website for about 4 years. On a good day I may get 20 hits and that’s during the holidays. Normally I get between 0-10 hits a day. I have listed my site in probably a dozen directories over the years and submitted to the same number of search engines. What am I doing wrong? Is it a content issue?


Yes Charles, it is a content issue. More precisely, it’s a Yahoo SiteBuilder issue. Why the heck are you using a rubbish Yahoo Content Management System (CMS) to build your site?

Just like Homestead SiteBuilder, which I ranted about earlier this week, Yahoo SiteBuilder is yet another CMS that creates multiple headaches when trying to optimize your pages so they are found in search engines.

I’m not hugely familiar with the SiteBuilder interface, but here are just some of the problems I see:

  • The Title and META tags are identical on every page. I’m guessing this is a limitation of Yahoo SiteBuilder that you can’t change. This is limiting the ability of each of your site pages being found in search engines.
  • You’ve got a serious case of code bloat, thanks to excessive, code added to your HTML pages by the SiteBuilder program.
  • All of your image files and probably others are stored somewhere on the Yahoo site and referenced by your pages, instead of being stored on your own domain.
  • This isn’t anything to do with the CMS, but your home page doesn’t really have enough text on the page to satisfy search engines and your pages don’t appear to be optimized for target search keywords and phrases.
  • Another non-CMS issue, there don’t seem to be many internal or external links pointing to your site. You should probably try to gain some links from other web sites in your industry as theme-based links will help boost your position in Google. For example, I’m betting that within a month, you will be getting more traffic from this page than any other source. Such is the power of a well-placed link.

If you are serious about your business, you need to get serious about your site’s compatibility with search engines. You’d be better off paying a site designer to build you a REAL site that can be properly optimized. If you can’t afford a professional site design, consider installing the (free) WordPress blogging platform on your server and taking full control over your site that way. If you can’t afford a search engine optimizer, consider posting your requirements on our Search Engine College jobs board as there are a lot of SEO students just itching to sharpen their skills on a real site.

Take a month and teach yourself how to use WordPress if you have to - it’s pretty easy and search engines seem to love pages created with it (this site is built with WordPress). I’d also recommend taking the Search Engine Optimization Starter course at Search Engine College so you can better understand what makes a site rank well in search engines. It will be the best investment you’ll make all year and will help you get that gorgeous pottery in front of more eyeballs!

Spread the joy!