Many teachers and tutors seem to expect instant traffic to their websites. If I can just get my website online, the thinking goes, that will be enough. This is simply not the case. It can take months or even years to build traffic to a site.
When you are just starting out, the only people who will visit your website are those you have sent to the site yourself. That is not a bad thing, as long as you are thinking about the website in the right way.
Initially, you should consider your website to be an extension of your business card. You meet a prospective student. You give him or her your business card. They visit your website (which is printed on the card) to learn more about you, your credentials and experience, and your services. They contact you for a first lesson.
Your initial website should do these two things well:
1: Help the prospective student understand who you are and how you can help him. 2-3 pages is perfect. One page about you. One page about your services. One page with testimonials from your current and/or former students (used with permission, of course).
2: Give the student a way to contact you to arrange a first lesson or consultation. Give them a phone number, email address, or contact form so they can get in touch with you. (If you are worried about exposing your personal information, there are ways to avoid this. I will try to address some of these in a future post.)
For now, don’t worry too much about Web traffic, search engine optimization, blogging, etc. That comes next. For now, just focus on the two goals above. In other words, the first step toward marketing your teaching or tutoring website is to worry less about marketing it online and to focus more on marketing yourself offline. Then, when you make a connection, your prospective student will be able to easily learn more about you and easily contact you for a lesson.