If you build it they will come. That"s the mentality that most people have when building there first website. That"s just not the way the internet works. You have to advertise, you have to tell people that you exist.
Ask your self how you found the last item you purchased from the internet. Did you search with Google? What search terms did you use? Did you stumble upon it from someone else"s website? Did you read a review about it and searched Google for it? Put yourself in the mind of your customers, how do you expect them to find you?
The first thing you should do with all new domains is manually add them to the search engines like Google or Yahoo. http://www.google.com/addurl/ http://search.yahoo.com/info/submit.html You can pay some money to be included in there index quickly but I never have found it to be worth the money that charge.
The next thing I would consider is setting up a google/yahoo adwords campaign. Depending on your product or service, you could run a successful adwords campaign on as little as $10 a month. It all depends on what keywords you want to use. Selecting the right keywords is an art in its self, there are plenty of book out there that are just dedicated to helping you select good keywords. Ask yourself this question what search words would your customers use to find you? http://adwords.google.com/ http://publisher.yahoo.com/
Next is to manually get the word out there. This step can be one of the hardest and most time consuming steps. What you need to do is get people talking about your product, get people to link to your website from theirs, get people to promote your service/product for you because they believe in your product.
- Write a review of your product and add it to a consumer reports website
- Ask a blogger or review site to do a review of your product/service
- Find people Forums/blogs/that are talking about your competitors and suggest your own.
- Create links back to yourself anyway you can.
- Be creative,
Search engine optimization (SEO) and advertisement are huge subjects. I only slimed the service in this article.