Increasing Your Online Presence To Get Leads & Earn Business
Congratulations! You have a martial arts school, and maybe a website.
After 15 years, I’m still awed by the power and reach of the internet. Your martial arts website can do a lot of business for you. It can sell your classes, and bring you lots of business.
But here’s the thing. You can’t just sit and wait for people to show up. It’s not going to happen. People aren’t going to sign up for classes—just because you’ve got a new karate school or web presence.
That would be like setting up a storefront in a rural town (population 20) in the Adirondacks, putting up a sign, and expecting to get lots of business. It doesn’t happen that way.
You’ve got to get the word out.
A Sign on the Road
You see, your website is just a platform—like a sign on the road. You need to fill that sign with the messages, pictures, videos, etc. that you want people to see. But most importantly, you have to post that sign in the right spot—so that people see it and have a chance to respond to it and do what you'd like them to do: visit your school and sign up for your classes.
That’s where companies like mine come in. The website content that eSpyder Web Design Group creates is designed to direct traffic to you, and convert strangers into leads. It’s done through something called “Search Engine Optimization” (SEO).
For those of you that are new to SEO, it refers to a technique intended to get your school to appear on the first page of any relevant search on Google, or another search engine.
SEO isn’t magic. It’s tough to do. It starts with your website design. You need to design your site so that Google and other search engines know how to read and recognize the content and the links. This includes lacing your content with tags, words, phrases, and other triggers to let the search engine know: here’s what my site is all about.
Then, once you let Google and the other search engines know you’re there, you need to get them to rank you at (or at least towards) the top of a user’s search results. It’s safe to say that you want to be on page #1 of any Google search—not page 5 or even 3. Ideally, you’d be in the #1 spot—but at least in the top 5.
One of the most effective ways to do this is to “code” your content, so that if the search reads:
“Karate Waynesboro, VA”
your site is the one that pops up.
The work doesn’t stop there. There are other things you can do to raise your website ranking. They’re highly technical—but they can be extremely effective.
When combined, these SEO techniques have been amazing for our clients. Tri-State Martial Arts reported a 25% increase in students right after their website went up. Resolute Martial Arts reported 70 new students within six months of opening. In five months, Clayton's Martial Arts got over 60 students. USA Karate and Wesley Chapel Martial Arts record over two leads a day. Korean Karate Academy doubled their student count in six months. East West MMA gets four inquiries a day. Austin Fitness Martial Arts gets 5-6 leads a week, and so does Choes Hapkido. Lenny Sprague says he’s always one of the top two schools in his area, on Google.
The list goes on.
These tricks are tough. But SEO experts like us know what to do, and they can do it for you and make sure your website gets seen and read.
So don’t let your website stand on a lonely hilltop all by itself. You’re wasting your web presence—and leaving money on the table.
The students are out there: you just need to reach them and claim them for yourselves.
Renee Helton is the founder and president of eSpyder Web Design Group, which specializes in converting a web presence into leads and revenues for martial arts school owners nationwide.