Paid advertising is often the most effective way to get your product in front of a large audience of potential customers. However, a new business does not always have the luxury of a large advertising budget. In the early stages, you may need to consider as many avenues as possible for free advertising. Thankfully, there are several ways to promote products on the Internet without spending money up front.
Join an advertisement sharing network. Websites such as Clickochet.com, ClickableType.com and AdsFlip.com allow you to display your advertisement in exchange for displaying other advertisements on your website. Each time a website visitor views an advertisement, you earn "credits" that trigger your advertisement to be displayed on other member websites. Using this method, you do not need to pay to display your advertisement around the Web.
Post advertisements on a free classified ad website, such as Craigslist.org. Advertisements on Craigslist are displayed for users who live in your geographical area, making this another option if you want to market your product to local customers. Craigslist strongly discourages spam, so do not attempt to post your advertisement many times across multiple regions. This can result in your account being terminated.
Related Reading: How to Advertise a Business for Free on the Internet
Start a blog. By adding a blog to your business's website and updating it regularly, you increase the amount of text on your website for search indexes to discover and rank. The more keyword phrases that your website appears on search engine results pages for, the more potential visitors your website will receive.
Create an affiliate program. When you start an affiliate program, online publishers place links to your product on their websites. If someone visits your website through one of these links and purchases the product, you pay the publisher a commission for referring the customer. Although an affiliate program reduces your profit margin slightly, it also reduces your advertising costs by allowing others to do much of the promotional work for you. You simply have to design your website to convert as many referrals to customers as possible. Many of the most successful companies on the Internet such as Amazon, eBay and Newegg have affiliate programs and gain new customers through referrals from online publishers.