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About Suzanne

Hello there! I’m Suzanne Smith, aka The Web Smith, or the_web_smith on social media.

If you’re looking to generate leads to grow your business sustainably, and want to do this by bringing traffic to your website, you’re in the right place.

Life before blogging

I worked as an in-house lawyer for around 25 years before deciding to do something different with my life after turning 50!

As well as having a law degree and qualifying as a solicitor (the English equivalent of an attorney) in 1994 , I have an MBA and a degree in French literature. I’m fairly fluent in French and have lived in the UK, New Zealand, France and Belgium.

If you’re interested in finding out more, here’s my LinkedIn profile.

My blogging journey

I launched a WordPress website and blog, called The Independent Landlord, from scratch by myself on a shoe-string in August 2022. The aim was simple: share practical and legal advice to other landlords, drawing on my personal experience as a self-managing landlord, and my training as a lawyer.

It has been more successful than my wildest dreams, but it didn’t happen over night.

Like most people building their own blog from scratch, I had many weeks of frustration getting the site to look the way I wanted it to. Then there was a steep learning curve to figure out how to drive traffic to the website, without all my Instagram followers getting fed up with my constant promotion of it!

I decided on a (fairly) manageable goal: publishing one high quality blog post a week of around 2,000 words of original content, week in, week out.

I also sent out a weekly newsletter to subscribers. Building up my subscriber list is key to a successful blog. I put a lot of effort into the newsletters, which have a high average open rate of over 60%. Affiliate links came later.

It took a long time before I figured out what I needed to do to increase my traffic from Google. Then search engine optimisation clicked and fell into place for me. The traffic took off and I’m now top 5 for lots of key words on Google. All without paying for backlinks or advertising.

As I’m “early Gen X”, coding was always a bit of a mystery to me. However, I decided to take a course in web development to learn HTML, CSS and a bit of JavaScript, as I wanted to understand what goes on behind the WordPress plugins. Not least so I understand what “minify CSS” means when my SEO tool tells me I need to do it to speed up my website!

I’m now an expert on pretty much all things blogging, and enter The Web Smith. 😊

About The Web Smith

Once The Independent Landlord took off, people started picking my brain about how I did it. Especially as I had done everything myself, without a team of experts to do the heavy lifting. They wanted me to share my secrets of success, so they too could have a blog which brings lots of traffic from Google to their websites.

There’s a lot of information out there to help newbie bloggers. But it’s piecemeal, and often very US-centric. We sometimes do things a little differently in the UK, and it can be very hard to track down something that fits for how we do things here.

I decided to launch The Web Smith to help bloggers and online businesses build blogs, websites and newsletters sustainably. The key to this is writing great content that people want to read, which is well-presented and optimised so that Google’s bots notice it. And newsletters that people open, because they know they’ll be useful.

I help businesses devise a strategy for their websites to increase traffic and bring their target audience to their site. I also provide one-to-one consultation, SEO audits, website audits, content creation and editing.

If you’d like to know more about how I can help you make the best of your website, drop me a line here.

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