In the old days of the Internet people said the phrase "build it and they will come"  This has changed however.. with more and more sites on the net you have to do something that will attract people. I have found some things that have worked.

Look at all the largest sites on the Internet. Yahoo, Altavista, Lycos, and Jayde you will see something very similar with them. There is hardly any advanced graphics or Javascripts on these sites. It is very straight forward with simple text based menu with simple compressed graphics.

I will use Yahoo as a example. It is the Largest site on the Internet in terms of traffic. The site layout is VERY straightforward with no moving graphics or Javascript. This is something that people should note when designing a site. GRAPHICS TAKE TIME TO DOWNLOAD!

When I visit a graphic intensive site I might take the time to wait until the download is complete if the graphics are really cool... but trust me.. the second time I go to the site (if there would be a second time) I will hit that stop button faster than you can say "long download"

Design your site as if it is a portal or search engine. Portals have dealt with huge volumes of traffic and have done their research. It's the cheap way to do market research.... my college professor once told me that if I were to open a store.. choose a location right next to a new McDonald's. In order for the McDonald's to be built a invest a serious amount of money for market research is spent.. how much traffic does the street get.. how close is it to businesses (the people on their lunch break have very little time for lunch and have a tendency to eat fast food)

Trust me when I say that Yahoo or Altavista does their research. Their livelihood depends on how their visitor reacts to their site. They measure click through from the main site to other areas.. they even measure the spacing and the fonts to make sure it appeals to their massive audience as well as design their site for the least amount of bandwidth traffic. They don't want to slow down their site. So their site is VERY efficient.