Promoting Your Website

Get The Word Out

So you made a website, great!  And now you're done right?  Not exactly.  You see people aren't going to see your website unless you promote it.  Now that doesn't have to be a hard thing to do, in fact some things you can do are pretty easy.  Here are a few things you can do to promote your website and get it seen by potential clients.  

Business Cards

Always carry your business cards with you and always include your website on your business cards.  You can only put so much information on your business cards and by adding your website address you give people a way to learn more about your daycare.  I always carry a ton of cards with me and here's a little trick that I do.  When I'm anywhere talking to anyone about anything and they ask me for something that I could write down like a recipe, an address, someone else's phone number, you name it, I write it on the back of my card. 
I can be talking to a stranger at the supermarket and they can ask me about where I got my son's awesome mustache pacifier (really, it happened) and they will get my card with ...
"Mustache pacifier


 ... written on the back of it.  Hand your cards to EVERYONE.  


I know a lot of providers that shy away from using Craigslist for one reason or another.  For me Craigslist has been the best source for traffic to my website and calls from potential clients so I advocate it.  Yes it has its' issues but if you create an ad that looks well, stands out and is interesting you can lead a lot of interest to your website which can translate to new clients.

I order to maximize your Craigslist make sure to create an ad under the appropriate area which is the Community Section in Childcare.  I suggest against placing ads in other areas such as the For Sale area for Baby & Kid and Toys & Games.  I understand the logic the providers have when they do this - parents with children are looking at these ads - but I can't tell you enough how annoyed people get when they see ads that aren't categorized correctly, you'll probably get your add flagged.  

Your ad itself should be brief with enough information about your daycare to get parents to want to look at your website.  State your general area (such as the part of town), the openings you're hoping to fill as well as the age of the child(ren) that the opening is for.  Invite parents to call or respond to the ad if they want more information or to schedule an interview and close with a very brief description of your program.  Then add a link that directs parents to your website.  CA providers, don't forget to add your license number. 

Also I add a map showing my closest cross street.  Parents often base their chose on convenience and are looking for child care in a specific area so if you can give them an idea as to where your daycare home is you have a better chance of attracting those clients. 

I personally create a flyer (I used Photoshop but other programs work also) and use HTML to add it to my add.  My flyer is organized, colorful and gives quick bursts of information (I apologize in advance for the lousy screen shot).

Lastly I add photos.  ALWAYS ADD PHOTOS!  I cannot begin to tell you how boring ads are without them and you need to set yourself apart from the other ads.  If you don't feel comfortable using photos of the daycare children you can always use photos where their faces don't show or use photos of your space.  It really helps.

E-mail Signature

What is an e-mail signature?  A signature is a block of text that automatically gets added to the bottom of an e-mail message.  It can be your name, a quote etc.  By creating a signature in your emails you are giving everyone that you communicate through e-mail with a link that takes them right to your website.  

Your signature should have your name, your title, your daycare name, a link to your website, email address and license number (CA FCC is required to add the license number to all advertising).  You can also add your telephone number and address if you wish.  Here's an example:

Marina Valenzuela
Child Care Provider
Helping Hands Childcare, Licensed Family Child Care Home
(805) 555-6860
License #:566123456

The actual process of creating a signature in your e-mail depends on your e-mail provider.  A quick Google search for "how do I add a signature in [AOL, GMAIL, etc.] will direct you with step by step instructions.

Start a Blog

If you've been at this daycare thing for a while then you've probably picked up a good trick here and there so why not share it with other like-minded people and add a link to your website.  Write about your daily life as a family child care provider, if you have awesome administrative skills write about creating contracts and documents, if you have an amazing preschool curriculum share activities with parents and clients alike.  

The traffic from these blogs can create more traffic to your website. 


Some providers create paper newsletters for their clients with updates and other information so why not e-mail them newsletters as well.  E-mailed newsletters have a chance of having a parent forward them to someone else especially if they want to show off what an awesome provider they have. Include recipes or instructions for activities that you did at daycare for parents to try at home and include color photos of the children while they are being done and you're golden.  If the parents have friends or family with children around the same age they may share the newsletters with them. (pictures don't have to include the children's faces and can be of the neck down or of their hands making the activity).  

I use Target Hero which is free and easy to use.  

Submit Your Site to Search Engines

Although most times when you create a website it is automatically added to search listings it can sometimes take months and your ranking in the search results may be very low.  You can manually add your website to search engines which can be a lot faster than waiting for search engines to automatically add you however it can still take as long as four weeks even if you manually add your website.  By manually adding your website and updating it often you can increase your chances of people seeing it in search results.

Google - Google Webmaster Tools for submitting your website manually.  Just copy and paste your website address and type it in the URL box, type the words that appear in the Captcha and hit Submit Request.  

Yahoo!/Bing - Bing Toolbox to submit your site.  Yahoo search is powered by Bing so if you submit your website to Bing's search engine it will automatically add it to Yahoo!'s as well.  Just like Google's, type in your website URL, fill out the Captcha box and hit Submit. 

Remember, no one thing will in itself get you amazing results but combining many strategies together and consistency will.  

How To Advertise Your Daycare


(Editor's Note: I am a member of the Forum and in one thread the topic of marketing your daycare came up. The following was my response to that thread which I decided to post here as well.  The owner of asked if I would allow my response to be used as an article on his site, I of course agreed.  You can find that article here.)
The best way to promote your business is to understand there is not one way that is going to work. You have to use several different means. I network with a lot of child care providers that always ask me how I do so well when the odds are stacked against me. I live in a condo, I have a small patio, I don't have a lot of indoor or outdoor [daycare] space, I don't have as much experience in providing child care in my home as other providers, I have even less experience in licensed child care, I don't have a degree in child development (which many child care provider's in my area now do), I'm young and look even younger so people don't always take me seriously etc. but I have as many clients as I want and still get calls even when I'm not advertising or looking for new clients. The key is to get your name out there as much as you possibly can. Sooner or later the work will be done for you.
Flyers and printed materials are great if you post them in businesses that are somehow related to children (pediatricians, children hairstylists, child dentists etc.) so you can ask them if you can leave your flyer or business cards in their office.  Return the favor and take back some of their business cards and printed material to pass out to the parents. For dentists it works if they give you "goody bags" with toothbrushes that have the dentist's name on them and a business card in the bag. My families love it when I pass the bags out. Gas stations, parks and schools are also great places to post flyers but make sure you check your city ordinances and always make sure to get permission to post them first. Here are more ideas for advertising your daycare.
1) Create ads EVERYWHERE (online) with your contact info and a link to your [website]. There's tons of places online that help you create at least a basic ad for free. Craigslist, eBay classifieds, Sales   Spider, Angie's List,, Yahoo! Classifieds, Yellow Pages, Google Local, iNetGiant, and of course
2) Talk to EVERYBODY about your daycare ALL OF THE TIME. Shamelessly plug your daycare in everyday conversations no matter who you're talking to or where your are. Example: Grocery store and the woman at the check stand comments about something you are purchasing, you say "Oh yeah, I HAD to get that. My daycare kids love it". I've commented about my daycare to the checkers at my grocery store so much that other employees now will walk by me and say "Hi ____, shopping for good stuff for the daycare again I see" and then other people in the aisle now know that I do daycare. Happens all of the time at the dentist, at my doctor's office, at a restaurant, you name it. Even my friends and ex-coworkers regularly promote my daycare and send me referrals (just make sure that you at least send a thank you note to show your appreciation when someone sends you a referral). And be EXCITED and PASSIONATE when talking about your business. Make people feel about your daycare how you feel about it.
3) Post Your Location. I know a lot of [other family child care providers] don't like to post their addresses on their advertising however I just don't think it's business-wise. I added my daycare on Google Maps so that when people Googled "child care" in this area I'd pop up. This generation of parents are younger and use the internet to find businesses in their area including child care so take advantage of that. I had a woman call me last week and I offered to refer her to other providers that I knew that had openings. I gave her names and general areas of the other providers (all within a mile of me) and she said that she had seen them in her   Google search but called me because she immediately knew that my location would work for her. She actually told me that she wished that other [family] daycares would do that because it would make it a lot easier to find a daycare in the area that she needed. And don't stop at Google, add your daycare to Yahoo!   Business listings and other major search engine directories. A basic listing is free but you have to list your address (no PO boxes). If you have a website you can link [your site] to your directory listing too.
4) Have a website. If you don't have one yet, get one. You don't have to get all fancy but make it look organized and clean. You can create one easily and for free if you use sites like or Put a lot of useful information on it like your hours, contact information, information about you, your program and your equipment/toys etc. Whatever the people ask you about most during interviews should be on the website. Put your contract and policies on it so that parents can read them in advance. Update your website frequently. Updating it pushes you up higher in search engine searches, if you don't update it regularly search engines like Google will put you lower in search listings because they want people to find websites with the most relevant and up to date information as possible. Make the information stuff that people want to read. You can even make a section for parents only where they can view photos, see a calendar etc. The more people that view your website the higher the listing you get in search engines.

5) Submit your website URL to Google, Yahoo!, Bing, Ucanto, Self Promote, Addpro, Free Site Submission, Quick Register etc. Otherwise it can take FOREVER for your website to be added to the search listings or you can be placed really low on the list.
6) Offer incentives to your current clients. Give them $50-$100 off of a weeks' tuition if they refer someone that signs up and stays for at least 4 weeks. Give your clients a reason to want to refer you to others that will benefit them.
7) Meet and network with other [family child care] providers near you and stay in touch about what openings they have. Offer to refer clients to them if you get a call for a child that you can't take and vice versa. For example if you have an opening for an infant but don't offer SA care and another provider doesn't do infant care but offers SA care you could refer clients to each other.

All in all this is just some of the things that you can do to promote your business, there are tons of other ways to do it but like I said, it's a combination of things that really works and not just one thing alone!