As I talked about in one of my first blog posts – Free Patterns Lead to Sales, it’s a fairly common practice for crafters to offer free patterns on their blogs and websites. Freebies can lead to a multitude of free links and advertising for your site. And it’s not a technique for garnering links and traffic that is solely utilized by crafters.
Where site owners are shooting themselves in the foot is when they remove a previously free article or pattern from their website and add it to their shop or store, make it part of a paid ebook or private area. Don’t get me wrong, I understand why someone would want to make money from their work. But, as those folks who have linked to that page realize that it no longer exists, you are going to lose all of those wonderful links to your site.
I mention this because while auditing one of the categories on Crafty Tips, one of the pattern pages I was linking too came up 404 – file not found. A bit of digging finally took me to her sales area. She now offers the pattern for sale but does not currently have one in her shop. With my current schedule being as tight as it is, I don’t have time to fuss with it, so the listing was removed.
Online Marketing Tip
Instead of deleting the entry entirely, why not turn the original blog entry into an advertisement for the paid pattern, ebook or subscription?
Instead of deleting everything why not showcase the item for sale with samples and details some shop sites simply don’t provide room for?
Instead of leading visitors to a dead end, why not lead them straight to the cash register?
Maybe it’s just me, but sometimes I just don’t understand folks and why they don’t get this.