Martial Arts Business Website

Your Martial Arts Business Web Site

Why Do You Need A Web Site?

you need a website

A web site is a crucial ingredient of your martial arts marketing strategy because it can widen your target market to include anyone who has access to a computer and the internet. So, how can you reach some of those internet surfers, and how can you capture some of the billions spent in ecommerce?

A web site is a crucial ingredient of your martial arts marketing strategy because it can widen your target market to include anyone who has access to a computer and the Internet. Almost 60% of Americans and Canadians had access to the internet at home in 2003, and around 8 million had regular access to the internet from somewhere, either at home, at work or at school. And that’s just in North America. Ecommerce sales from Canada alone were $7.2 billion, and we only captured 4% of the global ecommerce market! So, how can you reach some of those internet surfers, and how can you capture some of that $7.2 billion spent in ecommerce?

First, you build it.

first build your website

The first step is designing your website. If your martial arts school already has business cards and letterhead, it’s best to design your website around them. [pay]A matching corporate identity and website helps with branding. I like uncomplicated websites, with a simple layout and easy navigation. A nice, simple layout, with good graphics, balanced look and good color combinations is my #1 goal when designing a martial arts business web site. Remember to use graphics sparingly and to optimize (compress the file size) them for your website because internet surfers are impatient.

If your page loads too slowly, they’ll leave.

running from slow website

Navigation should be easy to find and to use, and it should be consistent from page to page. I’ve left more than one site frustrated because I couldn’t easily find their navigation. martial arts business web sites aren’t static. They evolve. You need to start somewhere, and starting with an introductory web site is probably easiest. All you really need to start is five pages. You can always add pages later. The important thing is to just do it – take the plunge and get it out there. For a good example of a martial arts school website visit AmericanDragon

Your five pages could include an index, or home page, about us, programs, contact and a site-map.

5 page website

The index page is your landing page. Typically its design is a little more detailed than the others, but it doesn’t have to be that way. I like to use CSS (cascading style sheets) for designing because it’s simply easier to build a web site and to edit its layout with CSS rather than just HTML (hypertext markup language) alone. A change on a CSS sheet changes all the pages on your site at once.

Content is king

man with bars showing growth

Once your site is designed, you’ll want to start thinking about content. Design is very important, but it does little good to have a beautiful site without high-quality content. Your martial arts business home page introduces you and your school – who you are and what you do. The about us page is usually used to give more detail than the home page about who you are, and your programs page gives more detail about what you do.

You might wonder why you’d “waste” a page on a site map since you only have 5 pages, but site-maps help search engines find all the pages in your site. This will give you a higher search engine ranking than if you did not have one.

As far as content goes, more is better, up to a point. Your pages should be content rich and informative, but they also need to be relevant to your martial arts business. If your visitor can’t figure out what your web site is about in just a few seconds, they may leave. The internet was at first strictly informational, and that’s how it remains today.

Several times people have tried experiments using copy-writing similar to direct mail sales letters, but they’ve all failed. It seems as if people surf the internet more for information than anything else. Knowing this will help you write pages people will want to read.

Attracting visitors

You could follow your instinct and just start writing, but wait. There’s research you must do first, or your web site simply won’t be high enough in searches to be found. Search engine optimization is far too big a subject to cover in this short article, but among other things, search engines find your pages based on keywords.

attracting visitors to your site

So, pretend for a moment that you’re on the other side of the desk. If you were a student of your own martial arts business, what words or phrases would you use to search for your school? Ask friends and neighbors how they’d search for your martial arts school. When you’ve come up with a few, check them out on a keyword suggestions tool.

You can also use that tool to suggest similar words and phrases. Then find out how many results there would be if you searched for that term. What you want to do next is narrow down your choices to the words or phrases that are searched for the most, but have the fewest results. Remember that people generally don’t look beyond the first three pages for any search term, so if you’re not in the top three pages, your business is not likely to be found at all.

search for keywords for your website

If there are millions of results for your phrase, you might simply need to make it more specific. For example, let’s say you have a martial arts business in Tampa, Florida that specializes in childrens’ Karate. Using “karate for kids” as a search term is nearly pointless because there are almost 2 billion results for that word.

But, there are only 974 results for “karate for kids Tampa Florida”. Much better, but how often is that searched for? According to WordTracker, it’s searched for 10 times a day. That would be 10 people a day finding your school’s website. What you want to do, is write your content around those words and phrases. You don’t want or need very many – three or four are plenty. Getting them to come back again and again.

Getting visitors to come back to your site again and again is relatively simple. Keep your content fresh and lively, make sure it’s informative, and add to it often. I hope you decide your martial arts business needs a web site. It’s the best way I know how to reach a wider target audience with a relatively small investment.

Time Vs. Money

I know that many martial arts school owners are owner/manager/instructors who really don’t have the time to learn CSS and build their own websites. That is my situation. You can get an affordable, professionally designed, search engine optimized martial arts school website that will attract students on a regular basis.

contact webmaster at tygerz designs

Champion of Web Design

You can reach my webmaster at World Martial Arts Magazine Help Desk to get a 5 page website designed today.


About Claire Poulton

Publications Manager for World Martial Arts Magazine, World Martial Arts Radio, World Martial Arts TV, World Martial Arts Media. Web Designer with 8 years experience. You can see what Tygerz Designs offers at My Tygerz Designs

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