Once you are satisfied with your site and it has been thoroughly tested, it is ready to go “live” to the world. The first thing to do is make sure that your URL (the Web site’s address) is on all of your marketing materials (stationery, business cards, brochures, flyers, yellow pages ads, etc.). Next, send a “press release” to your local newspaper’s business section. Depending on where you live, they may accept this or not. Usually the smaller towns are more inclined to accept press releases of this type, but if you are offering something really special, useful or otherwise valuable to a large segment of the population, even the larger newspapers may accept it.
Finally, you should submit your site to all of the major search engines or directory services such as Google, Yahoo, Infoseek and AltaVista, etc. There are many of these services, some of which are very specialized, but your focus should be on the more popular search services initially. You can submit your site to several at once by going to a free service called Submit Express. Submission to all of the major search engines is free for basic service.
Once this is done, you can also consider such advertising methods as banners (there are some free “banner swap” services, but you have to agree to host their banners as well) and other types of paid advertising.
Another great way to promote your site is to find complementary Web sites in your local area (or even worldwide) and ask for a reciprocal link. In exchange for them advertising your Web site with a link, you will advertise theirs with a reciprocal link on your site. This is almost always free, but some people will try to get you to pay. Think long and hard before agreeing to pay for a reciprocal link unless it is from something like your local newspaper, radio or television station because the return on your investment is questionable in many cases.