Monday, December 29, 2008

Affiliate Programs: How To Make Money

Today's Marketing Tip: Selling Products Online Through Affiliate Programs.

If you do anything online, you must be aware of the fact that each day, affiliates (also known as resellers) are generating millions of dollars selling other peoples stuff. The process is simple and can certainly supplement your income. Some online marketers actually sell affiliate products full time and make an excellent living.

Simply said, you place a link on your website and encourage individuals to purchase a product. This can be done through a house list via email, a promotion on your webpage, or through online advertising. Once an individual clicks through to the product website and buys, you earn a commission. All of the links you use to promote the product have tracking built in. That's what makes it work!

Here are 3 tips for making money with affiliate programs.

1. Find a product that you really like. You need to sell a product that you believe, you enjoy, or that you feel provides value to a particular segment. I've seen many affiliate marketers fail simply because they did not care about the product they were selling. Rather, they simply wanted to make money.

2. Sign up for affiliate marketing websites. The three most popular are Clickbank.com, PayDotCom.com, and CommissionJunction (cj.com). What's great about these networks is that they are fee to join if you are only looking to promote affiliate products and give a lot of variety. Additionally, most of these provide access to banner ads, emails, etc. that you can use to promote your affiliate product.

3. Begin promoting your product. There are MANY ways to promote a particular product or service online. As I mentioned in the opening of this post, there are some individuals that make a significant income promoting and selling third party products. The benefit is no inventory and limited expense. That said, start your promotional activities in a very basic way. Grab some advertisements or emails and begin to market your product.

I've been using affiliate marketing to promote my products and other Internet related products for more than 3 years. I learned much of what I need to know through trial and error. If you want to take some shortcuts and start making money right away, I encourage you to check out Commission Blueprint. This product, and others like it give you the tools, information, and templates you need to start making money online.

Start today and learn, learn, learn. Before you know it, you may be one of those individuals making lots of money online.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

How To Create A Sitemap

A sitemap is similar to a table of contents you might find in a book. A sitemap is important because it guides web browsers to particular parts of a website they may have an interest in. Sitemaps are also where search engines look to find related pages to a given keyword or keyword phrase. If you have a sitemap, search engine spiders can easily navigate your website.


Creating a sitemap is a relatively easy process. You do not need to be a programmer or have specialized knowledge. All need is Notepad, a program editor, and some patience. Here’s how you can build your own sitemap:

Create a listing of your websites pages using Notepad.

You don’t have to be a Notepad per se, any text editor or word processing program will do. First, make sure to type in all the pages your website, properly named. Create your list as if you were listing the contents of a book. Make a draft and review. Be sure not to miss anything.

Create a new page for your sitemap on your website.

You can insert the sitemap on your website using an existing page or a new one. The best bet it to create a new page that is actually named, “sitemap.” Using your notepad, incorporate all the necessary tags (meta) that would be associated with that page including a title that includes the label “sitemap”.

Create a link for the sitemap from your homepage.

You won’t be able to view the sitemap if you doing place a link to it from your home page. Additionally, placing a link from your home page will make it each for search engines to find the sitemap. This directs them to your sitemap for proper indexing.

Check your work.

It is important to validate the functionality of each link you’ve placed on your sitemap. Test each one. If you receive an error, be sure to fix it and promote your page to your site. Run through each ling and make sure that everything is working.

Upload your sitemap once per month.

As a final step, make sure to update your sitemap regularly. Search engines will reward you for an accurate sitemap that reflects changes to your website on a regular basis.

The steps provided here are great ways to create sitemaps. These days, if you search hard enough on the web, you will find online programs that will do all these work for you. All you have to do it type in the URL or the link of your website and they will create the sitemap with click of a button.

No matter what method you use for creating sitemaps, make sure you have one. The result can only improve your search engine rankings and enhance your overall presence online.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Marketing Tip: Yahoo! Answers

One good marketing tips is the use of Yahoo! Answers. This is a great place to find answers to some of your most commonly asked questions as well as those that are more difficult to answer. I spend a few minutes each day at Yahoo! Answers responding to questions related to marketing, Internet marketing and SEO. Here is one such question that I recently responded to:

Q: Is the Alexa Page Rank a reliable indicator of a site's popularity?

A: There are a number of resources you can use to determine a site's popularity. Although Alexa has been around for some time, it only provides a small piece of the overall puzzle. When looking for a site's popularity, I recommend looking at a number of sources.

First, start with Google. What is the Google PR of the page you're reviewing? Download the Google toolbar to get a look. Additionally, type "link: www.sitename.com" in the Google search bar and this will tell you how many sites are linking in which can also serve as a point of reference.

Now that you have those data points, look at the same data in Alexa. This will tell you how accurate it may be. Alexa offers an Alexa ranking as well as the number of in-bound linking web sites. A picture should be starting to form in your mind in terms of the site you're reviewing. Finally, check out one other resource: Quantcast.com.

I started using Quantcast about a year ago and it seems to be the most accurate with regard to my own internal stats (Google Analytics). Quantcast will give you much of the same information, but is usually more accurate. That said, Alexa Page Rank is a decent measure, but shouldn't be your only source of comparison.

I hope you found this question and answer series helpful. As I answer additional question that I think may be of value to all those looking to succeed with their online marketing, I'll be posting here. Check back often as one of these questions may be exactly what you have on your mind.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Today's Good Marketing Tip: Focus

So often as marketers, small business owners, or professional, we find ourselves focused on way too many things. The same is true of marketing. What I find is that when you focus on a particular marketing tactic, you can make progress. When trying to focus on everything at once: advertising, direct marketing, email marketing, ppc, trade shows, etc., the results are never quite the same.

Today's post is all about focus. I have found that throughout my career, I have achieved the greatest results by focusing in a given area and establishing a baseline. Once I've "mastered" and area, its time to assign that responsibility to someone else with the proper measurements.

Having the proper metrics to know how you're doing - without having to do the work yourself - allows you to focus on other things while managing by exception. What I mean is that it's impossible for one person to do everything and do it well.

So the next time you're struggling, think about transitioning some of your responsibilities. Take pride in the fact that you've reached that point and spend your time focusing on the metrics that are key to evaluating performance in that given area. Look at those statistics on a regular basis. Bottom line - move on, you'll be glad you did.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Today's Good Marketing Tip: Testimonials

Are testimonials quite what they used to be? Many of my marketing colleagues are challenging me on the value of testimonials. It's my belief that testimonials are still king. However, in today's marketing world, I think it's more a matter of how you present them.

The traditional quote from a satisfied customer still have value in my opinion. And many sites continue to use them (example: SEO Elite Review Blog). However, many have taken testimonials a step further using audio and video. I think this is a step in the right direction. This adds a believability factor when you can engage multiple senses.

What should you do with your testimonials?

Start. That's right... start collecting them in any format you can - the more the merrier. I would suggest creating forms that allow for your customers to upload a video, audio clip, and or written testimonial.

Once you've collected some testimonials from satisfied customers, you can decide on presentation and dissemination. Don't wait for browsers to find your testimonials. Rather, push them out through your advertising, newsletters, and emails.

This will draw attention to you and your product and differentiate you from the competition. Like I said, testimonials are still king!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Webmaster's Book of Secrets Review

If you're new to Internet marketing or have been at it for quite some time, no doubt you've heard about The Webmaster's Book of Secrets. This official review of one of the fastest selling SEO ebooks of all time is brought to you by MarketingScoop.com.

The Webmaster's Book of Secrets was written by SEO expert, Michael Fleischner. In this SEO ebook, Michael reveals the proven techniques he learned throughout his career from some of the nation's top SEO consultants.

Michael used the very techniques revealed in this guide for achieving number #1 Google rankings for his blogs, web sites, and forums. The book is divided into two primary sections:

Section 1: On page optimization.

In the first section, The Webmaster's Book of Secrets reveals how to improve search engine rankings by changing a number of elements on your web site pages. In this section, you learn about the number one mistake that most web site owners make, which prevents them from showing up on the first page of Google.

On page optimization factors that are detailed include meta tags, proper formating, little-know secrets about keyword density, anda simple technique proven to boost your rankings by hundreds of positions in less than a few days - improving visibility and traffic.

After reading section one of this guide, you'll be able to make some significant improvements in you search engine results. The value of this guide is that you can begin to use these techniques immediately, whether you're building a web site for the first time or you have a web site that is more established but not ranking well.

Section 2: Off-page optimization.

The majority of the techniques for improving search engine rankings appear in the second section of the book dedicated toward off-page optimization. These techniques reveal the importance of passing value to your web site through link exchanges, link building, and many more techniques the author has perfected over more than 10 years of doing business online.

One of the most important ways to improve your search results is through the development of in-bound links to your web site. Not only does the author teach you the proper way to develop in-bound links (97% of link building campaigns fail - find out why), but he teaches you the fastest way to build valuable links to your web site.

The book reveals a variety of link building techniques and covers each one in-depth. The content is so easy to follow, that you feel as though you can succeed by applying just one of the many techniques, and you can!

Some of the off-page optimization techniques, such as how to discover which links are getting your competitors into the #1 position on Google for a desired keyword or keyword phrase, reveal the truth as to why some sites seem to have the top position almost all the time. These secrets are worth thousands but are now available in this simple to use, tell-all guide.

In short, this SEO ebook is the fastest, most affordable way to improve search engine rankings for your website. Still not convinced? Read some of the powerful testimonials available on the website. Others are achieving #1 Google rankings with the help of the Webmaster's Book of Secrets... are you?

Friday, December 12, 2008

More About PPC Bully

For those of you who have been involved with PPC marketing for awhile and use Google Adwords you must be well aware of the fact that it is getting much more difficult to make money using PPC marketing. Not only is Google getting stricter with their rules of advertising with Adwords, but every year hundreds and thousands of new marketers are jumping into the PPC game and making it more difficult for the little guy to get ahead and make a profit with an Adwords campaign.

ppc bully review logoNow it used to be that if you wanted to run a successful campaign with PPC that all you had to do was launch a campaign, throw in a couple of hundred keywords and direct link to an affiliate page, but those days are long over as well as getting clicks for pennies. That's the purpose of this ppc bully review. To help you understand a better way for succeeding at ppc advertising.

Now you must have unique domains, tightly grouped keywords and ad groups and you also have to track every keyword with ad tracking to make sure you are not losing money. This process in setting up a campaign for profit with PPC can be very time consuming, but have no fear because the new PPC Bully software will automate most of the research part of picking a winning affiliate campaign and profitable keywords.

PPC Bully is made so you can get an edge over the competition and fast track your way to success with a successful affiliate marketing PPC campaign. You will literally save hundreds of hours in grueling research and know right off the bat if it is worth your time and money to put into a affiliate product or service. PPC Bully will spy on your competition and tell you everything they are doing. It will let you know what keywords are being run with what ads and what landing pages they are using or what product they are promoting in combination with the landing pages and keywords that are making them a profit. It’s as if you are letting your competition do all the work for you and you just jumping in and cleaning up.

In this day and age you need to have an edge to take you to the next level in PPC marketing and PPC Bully’s advanced keyword research and PPC monitoring is just what you need to start making more money off your Adwords affiliate marketing campaigns.

Click here to learn more about the PPC Bully software to grow your revenue.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Using YouTube In Your Marketing Mix

Today's Good Marketing Tip: You Tube

One of my subscribers sent me this email about how he was finding great sites to link to him. He was finding these sites on of all places - YouTube.


Now before you think you know what I'm talking about let me explain and give you the short version of the email he sent me. He said that he was looking for content to add to his sites and thought he would look on YouTube for some videos.

He found some that worked for his niche and then he noticed something he had never seen before. When he clicked on the video and it started to play he saw there was a tab below that video that was called "Statistics & Data". When he clicked on it, YouTube listed all the sites generating clicks for that video.

Now, maybe you've seen this before but what he did has made a difference in the traffic to his site....and his rankings! He made a list of the sites and then started contacting those sites with request to link to his site and some of his videos. Did everyone respond, no. Did everyone link to his site, no, but some did.

He has been able to build up a good number of quality backlinks that actually get traffic and increase his PR all at the same time. Which has resulted in a boosting of orders. What a great way to see YouTube to your advantage!

Now take action and head over to YouTube and locate some videos for your niche. Then, click on the stats tab and see who's driving them traffic. Best of luck.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Make the Most of Social Media

Social media can be defined, for our online purposes, as any web site in which the content of that site is primarily user driven. In other words, the site owners don't create the content, the users do. Some familiar examples might be blogger.com, myspace.com, facebook.com, and similar sites.

Social media also include social bookmarking sites, which are becoming evermore popular these days, especially by users in their 20's and 30's.

A social bookmarking site is a web site like Digg and Delicious. There are dozens of them. They usually operate as a way to store Internet bookmarks online. Think of the familiar "Favorites" folder in your browser. Social bookmarking sites do the same thing, but take it a step further.

First of all, social bookmarking allows a user to post his or her favorite articles, news stories, or web sites online as opposed to on their local machine. Secondly, these bookmarks are public, so that anyone can browse them and find sites that other people have bookmarked. Finally, many such sites offer additional functionality, such as user-driven ranking or voting and the addition of public comments to each bookmark.

So how can this be used for search engine optimization purposes? Well, it is important to remember that the proper goal of search engine optimization is not just rankings, but traffic, and not just any traffic but qualified traffic. It serves no business purpose to be #1 for a term not relevant to your site, or to receive loads of unqualified traffic to your site that will not result in a conversion to sale. When SEO is considered in this context, which is the proper one, things begin to make more sense.

Social media optimization involves a number of things, which will be detailed in later posts. However, generally speaking, the bookmarking of your site's content to social bookmarking sites creates both inbound linkage, traffic, and a "buzz". It is a wonderful way to "get the word" out about your site in short order.

The other advantage of social media is that it does create its own sort of internal quality control. Those who choose to spam a site with low quality posts will generally get voted down by the social community. Of course, bad publicity is better than no publicity, but we would all rather have a positive buzz about us given the choice. The creation of quality, useful, informative content is crucial to generating a positive buzz about your site.

Social media optimization involves more than just bookmarking your web site, however. It also involves making your site easy for others to bookmark as well. This is accomplished via a series of bookmarking icons placed somewhere within each page of the site, which allow users to post your content to a social media site with a simple click of their mouse.

Visit common bookmark sites and follow directions on adding bookmark icons to your web site. Another option is using a bookmarking applet like Addthis.com.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

What Is the Easiest, Most Reliable Way To Generate Traffic To Your Web site or Blog?

Today's Good Marketing Tip: Article Marketing

Getting high quality traffic is probably the biggest question asked by both new and established online businesses. After all, it makes no difference if you are selling a product, promoting affiliate links, or displaying adsense - you need traffic. And loads of it. So how do you do it?

Well, you could buy advertising. Hmm. Expensive. It is easy to spend several thousands of dollars A MONTH through Google.

You could buy text links. Also expensive - and rapidly losing effectiveness in the search engines. Just 100 links can set you back upwards of $2,000. But you need THOUSANDS of links for most niches.

You could buy the "Latest and Greatest" black-hat technique - whether that be "blog and ping", "tag and ping", log-file spamming, blog-comment spamming, or whatever else some clever
whiz-kid has come up with. The problem is, by the time the whiz-kid releases it to you, it is already past its sell-by date. Too bad, you missed the boat. And maybe you got your site banned too.

But did you know that there is one, rock-solid, technique that has been quietly working since the very beginning of the internet, is completely immune to changes in search engine algorithms, is 100% legitimate and ethical, takes very little time, and costs almost nothing?

Need your new site listed by the search engines in days rather than weeks or months? This will do it. Need top placings for organic traffic, even in highly competitive markets? This will do it.

What is more, it can even help you with the offline promotion too!

But it gets even better. Over the past year, my good friend Dr. Noel Swanson has put this method onto steroids. He has been quietly using it to build his adsense empire, AND to
promote his own products, snagging the Number 1 position in Google from 270 million competing websites as he did so!

And now, having decided that it won't hurt his own business by doing so, he is releasing this system to other smart marketers. People like you, in fact.

Unique Article Wizard

Not only that, but if you act quickly, you can lock in your membership at a ridiculously low price - and promote as many websites as you want at no extra cost!

Please be clear on this. This is NOT the "latest and greatest" fad. It will not be "worn out" in the next month or two. This is an already well-established method that is being quietly used by all the smartest marketers - but that has now been brought to a whole new level of simplicity and power.

If you are paying money for Google adwords and/or any other form of online advertising or traffic generation and NOT using Noel’s system then, quite frankly, you need your head examined!

Go take a good look at it now:

Unique Article Wizard

Your friend,

Michael Fleischner
-Internet Marketing Expert

P.S. He also has some incredible bonuses - again, they won’t be there for long so don’t put this off.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

How To Make Sure Your Web Site Visitors Convert: Engage Them

Today's Good Marketing Tip: Web site conversion

Marketing people have been trained to always have 'a call to action,' on their web site - a request to act or lose the opportunity of a lifetime. I'm sure you've seen the infomercials, website presentations, and online direct marketing promotions.

You're familiar with the marketing language, "act now and we'll send you two pieces of junk you don't need, but wait there's more..." Does any intelligent person really respond to this kind of pitch, and what self-respecting business would actually behave in this manner?

The truth is, that if you sell something of value at a reasonable price, and you treat your customers with some respect, you will get your share of business. You may not get all the business, nobody does, but the business you do get, will result in more satisfied customers, more word-of-mouth referrals, and ultimately more sales.

Statistically it may be true that if someone leaves your website without registering or buying something that the chances of them returning to order are low. However, I've come to discover that the problem isn't the customer. Rather, it's what you're saying, how you're saying it, and the expectations you set.

Achieving success is not a question of attracting more traffic, especially if your message is weak, unfocused, and lacking in emotional context. Success is a question of how many people you connect with both directly and indirectly, and how many people come back to your site because they are intrigued by what you have to say.

Orders are the result of building relationships and relationships are built on communication. You may not be able to speak to everyone who comes to your website but that only means that your website's primary job is to communicate what needs to be said so that it makes a memorable impression, and provides something more meaningful than a 'buy now' button.

Defining Success On Your Website

Orders are not the true measure of a website's success or is the volume of traffic a site attracts. You can have loads of traffic, but little of it ever gets turned into business, and you can even get some orders, but few long-term clients.

The primary objective of your website should be to initiate contact either by email, phone, or in the case of brick and mortar companies, store traffic. In order to achieve that objective, your website presentation must be engaging, enlightening, and above all memorable. Potential clients want a little foreplay, a little respect, and an understanding that you are asking them to put their faith in you.

Three Things You Need To Motivate Your Audience: Taking Action

Donna Flagg (Krysalis Group) is quoted in the article, "For the Love of Sales," as saying that, "Good selling comes down to three things: communication, education, and the ability to affect others."

I know of no better method to achieve these three goals than to implement video on your website, it is THE must have marketing vehicle for companies intent on maximizing website presentation impact.

The Center for Media Research reported in their recent 'Research Brief' that 41.2% of retailers surveyed were adding product videos to their websites. And the power of video marketing is not just about sales; it's about how you as a business communicate in the most efficient manner to all your concerned publics.

1. Communication - Engage
Your websites serves no purpose unless it engages your viewer and communicates a meaningful, memorable message. A video presentation uses sights, sounds, and performance to produce psychological persuasion.

2. Education - Enlighten
A message delivered using creative video presentation techniques is seen, heard, and embedded in the audience's mind. It informs, explains, clarifies, and focuses attention on the key decision making elements that produce leads, and ultimately sales.

3. Affect Your Audience - Create An Experience
A properly crafted Web video makes a human connection, it affects the viewer on a psychological as well as rational level, so that the message delivered resonates and impacts the decision making process.

It is time businesses employ a new Web-philosophy, one that is aimed at turning advertising into content, and content into an experience. And I know of no better way to create an online experience than to employ Web video.


This post provided by Jerry Bader who is Senior Partner at MRPwebmedia, a website design firm that specializes in Web-audio and Web-video. Visit http://www.mrpwebmedia.com/ads

Friday, November 28, 2008

10 Secrets to Using Twitter to Attract More Followers and Get More Clients


Are you familiar with Twitter? It's actually gaining significant popularity. It is essentially a single element, found in Facebook functionality, taken to an extreme. Some people, like today's guest poster are using Twittering primarily to market their business. Donna's clients, who create Twitter accounts for marketing, as well, tell her, "I'm signed up. Now what in the world do I Twitter about? How do I market my business with this tool?"


Here are 10 strategies that I use regularly to marketing my business and my expertise via Twitter. Remember, you have only 140 characters for your tweet (Twitter post).

1. How you're helping clients. Talk about specific ways that your business helps clients and use their Twitter ID if you have their permission, i.e. "Just finished @clientname brainstorm great Internet marketing plan for 2009" or "Finally finished setting up Quickbooks for local hardware store -- now they can invoice their clients"

2. What you're doing in your own business. This is a perfect time to tell others when you're blogging, writing an article, creating your weekly ezine, recording your podcast, i.e. "Had great interview with Jane Smith today on speaking to grow your biz. Great ideas! Subscribe to podcast & listen here "

3. Useful tool or resource you've found. I run across these all the time in my daily activities, and Twitter is a perfect place to share,. i.e. "Found great new Firefox plug-in to monitor & check multiple Gmail accounts at same time at " or "Read great blog post on working at home with kids under 5 at (URL here)"

4. Ask a question. Need some ideas or some quick brainstorming? Twitter is an ideal place to gather opinions, i.e. "Help! Desperately seeking new laser printer. Recommendations?" or "How do I find training organizations online?"

5. Conduct a survey. What do your Tweeps think about a particular issue? Ask them via Twitter, i.e. "Quick poll: Do you get more clients from Facebook or Twitter? Respond at (URL here)"

6. Report on live events. The latest Twitter trend seems to be tweeting what's happening at conferences or workshops. In order for Twitter users to follow a particular event, it's usually referred to by a name preceded by a # sign, as in #JVAlert, for example, to make it simpler for people who want to follow those posts. So, if you were at an event, you might tweet "#JVAlert John Smith speaking on affiliate programs. Just got great idea on training affiliate managers!" Just don't get so wrapped up in tweeting that you ignore the content delivered in the conference!

7. Product or service launch. If you're about to launch a new product or introduce a new product, let your Twitter followers know, i.e. "Pre-launch pricing for new DVD set about how baby boomers can start an online biz. Get $100 early bird discount at (URL here)"

8. Responding to others with advice or answers. The way to build professional relationships on Twitter is to help your tweeps. So, if someone asks a question, comments about something to which you have a response or an idea, or you want to ask a followup question, this is the perfect place to do so.

9. Acknowledging new followers. I've noticed a recent trend of acknowledging people who've decided to follow a Twitter user in the past day or so. I initially thought that others were doing this as a measure of popularity, but what I've come to realize that it's actually helping out the new followers because it exposes their Twitter profiles to others who may have never heard of them and who might like to follow them. So, to thank your followers, you'd tweet, "Welcome new followers @twittername, @twittername, etc."

10. Automate your tweets. Many of my tweets have been automated and connected to other things I do. TwitterFeed turns all of my blog posts into tweets. aWeber turns each ezine issue into a tweet. EzineArticles.com tweets my followers every time I publish an article through their service. Typically all that's involved here is connecting the particular service to my Twitter account. Once all the services are connected, I get free and automated Twitter posts with no additional effort on my part.

Twitter can be a great time-waster or a wonderful way to market your business and leverage your expertise online. Follow these 10 strategies and you'll begin to attract more followers and get more clients through social networking.


Online Business Manager and Online Business Coach Donna Gunter helps independent service professionals learn how to automate their businesses, leverage their expertise on the Internet, and get more clients online. To claim your FREE gift, TurboCharge Your Online Marketing Toolkit, visit her site at http://www.OnlineBizU.com . Follow Donna on Twitter: http://twitter.com/donnagunter

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

7 Steps For Building A Successful Web Presence

Doing business in the 21st century will eventually require every company to have a website in one form or another. Whether your site is interactive or simply informational, there are steps you can take to ensure you're on the right track to creating a successful web presence, seven to be exact (at least from our humble perspective).


While following these steps will not guarantee a successful website, it is certainly an intelligent place to start.

1. Perform a Business Analysis.
What is a business analysis? Simply put, review your business requirements and your objectives. What do you want to accomplish? How does your website fit into your overall business plan? What... no business plan? Develop a business plan first before you go any further into the process.

Your business plan will be your roadmap to success, so make sure the objective of your website fits into your overall business plan.

2. Perform some research, also known as, the Research phase.
Research your competition and industry sites. See what kind of competition is out there. What kind of marketing does your competition engage in? Don't look to "reinvent the wheel", take a look at how the current market works; develop a list of pros and cons about your competition and then make your web presence work better.

3. Develop a concept and a design.
Finally time for the creative and fun stuff! This involves the selection of specific content, the layout of the site structure and navigation and the overall "look and feel" of your website.

Remember to pay special attention to your navigational structure!!! If visitors can't navigate your website or feel lost when doing so, your "pretty" site will have been a waste of time; don't go there, keep the navigation simple and for SEO purposes, make sure your navigation is text based. Although Flash driven websites look cool, they are not SEO friendly and can create more problems than the "coolness" factor they express (we'll discuss Flash sites in another article ).

4. Develop your website.
When considering which technology to develop your website, think cutting edge technology, not bleeding edge. Make sure the technology you use, such as ASP, PHP, HTML, CSS, will be useful for the next three to five years.

Database driven website are ultimately the easiest to maintain through the use of a content management system, but make sure the CMS you use is SEO friendly. An SEO friendly CMS will utilize real URLs, not strange looking query strings with lots of strange characters and question marks. Search engines despise query strings and rank these site accordingly.

5. Choose a host provider and implement your website.
When deciding on a host provider, make sure the host is not only reputable, but has been in business long enough that you can be sure they will be in business next year. Also, ask about site uptime. If your site is down for any reason, this will not only affect your potential and current customers, but the search engines as well. If the search engines decide on a given day to spider your site and it is unavailable, it could cost you your rank.

6. Promote and market your website.
Register your site with the major search engines such as Google and Yahoo. Initiate other marketing activities such as an email blasts to prospective customers. Consider "Pay per Click" advertising with the major search engines and don't forget about a long term SEO campaign to drive targeted traffic to your site.

7. Finally, maintain your website.
Probably the most important long term step is continuing to provide current and relevant information on your website. Keep your site content current to encourage return visitors and give them something to return for! Related to SEO, search engines just LOVE sites which provide new content on a regular basis and rank such websites accordingly.

Overall, remember, your website is not just a marketing tool, it's a business tool, and it should be generating a revenue stream for your business.

This post provided by Matthew Mckernan - Website Design, Search Engine Optimization/SEO, Web Development.

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Full-Proof Way To Generate Website Traffic

You no doubt recognize by now that having a website is essential for any small business in the 21st Century. A website allows your business to connect with customers, inform prospects, and gain your business’s visibility so you can earn more profits—even while you sleep.

The cornerstone of every successful local business website is traffic. Getting traffic and standing out in the crowd is hard to do. You are busy trying to run your business, you don’t have time for SEO and you don’t want to waste your money paying some “expert” who may or may not know what their actually doing. And unless you’re an expert at online marketing, you will waste thousands of dollars and hours of valuable time trying to figure out how to advertise on Google, Yahoo!, and MSN effectively.

The easy and simple way to generate traffic is to use video.

In this article, you’re going to learn an easy content creation strategy that takes less than a day to implement and will provide a steady stream of rankings, traffic, and leads to ANY website in ANY market.

I’m going to show you how to move viewers from ignorance, to becoming qualified prospects, and finally to becoming buyers. You’ll go from being a salesman to an authority, trusted advisor, and friend.

The result of this strategy is that your customers will be begging you to sell them something.

Why The System Works
Google, Yahoo and MSN love video content.

When you upload your videos to the top video sites, they get ranked and show up quickly in the search engines (usually within 1-2 hours). Having your webpage and video dominate a search engine result page (i.e., having more than 2 listings within the top 10) often occurs within 24-48 hours. And if you upload to dozens of sites, they all get ranked separately. It is not unusual for a single video to dominate up to 8 positions on a single page. When a user sees the obvious domination in organic listings, they click.

And if a user watches your video and visits your site, they’re 5 to 20 times more likely to take action than from an ordinary link or a paid advertisement. You just need to make sure you title your videos with the keyword phrases you want to target.

The Basic Steps
The only equipment you’ll need is a computer and an inexpensive camera (like a Flip webcam). If you don’t want to appear on screen, PC users can use PowerPoint, Camtasia, and a microphone; Mac users will need Keynote and Screenflow to create video presentations. You can also create video presentations with TrafficGeyser, which has a web application.

The Strategy Step-By-Step:
1. Write down the top ten frequently asked questions about your product or service

2. Write down the top ten questions a potential buyer should be asking about your products and services

3. Record 20 short videos responding to each question. These video responses should be 30 seconds to 3 minutes in length. At the end of these videos you should direct visitors to your website to take advantage of a special web offer or to see another video that compliments the information you just provided.

4. Upload your videos to as many video sharing, social bookmarking, podcast directories, social networks and blogs as possible. It will take several days to do this manually. However, there is an affordable service that will automate this process for you called TrafficGeyser.

Once submitted, the search engines will index your videos in a few hours and you’ll have incredible exposure all over the Internet. The goal of this is to send visitors to your website for an offer, and this is where you can capture names and email and build a client list.

2 Fast Ways To Implement This Strategy

1) You can spend about 3 or 4 hours creating these videos yourself and then submitting them to dozens upon dozens of social, video, bookmarking, podcast, and blog sites through a submission tool known as TrafficGeyser. I would not recommend submitting your videos manually, it literally takes up to 3 hours to register for every one of these sites independently and then you have to sit and wait as you upload each individual video. Unless you have a spare secretary who isn’t busy, you should seriously get this done through an automated system like TrafficGeyser.

2) Should you have an issue about creating a professional looking video, or you don’t like your voice or how you look on screen, then have the pros do it. SmallBizVids.com will create professional video for your site and even submit it to all the video sharing sites. They are extremely affordable, and if you consider the time saved and the quality of work, it may actually be cheaper than doing it yourself.

Consider combining these two methods. For example, you can create the videos that drive traffic to your website and then have a nice professional advertisement on your website that can really sell customers on your service. Or perhaps you can use the professional video to advertise a special deal on your site and then have a self-made welcome video.

I’m looking forward to seeing you online soon! Don’t hesitate, make sure you get started today before your competition does.

Vernon Wharff is a small business writer and consultant based in Orlando, Florida. As a leading expert in online marketing and search engine optimization, he consults with small businesses to expand their sales and lead generation through the Internet. The methods he employs have earned small businesses millions in new business. You can find out more about his online marketing services at his website.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Video Marketing - Get the Most From Your Online Marketing

Video marketing is the big and if you don’t have a successful strategy in place, then you’re leaving money on the table.  Find out how to out do the competition and get more customers.

Video marketing is one of the easiest ways to get ahead of your competition and sell your services to customers.  The future of the Internet advertising is video and providing video on your website is an excellent way to convince visitors to buy your products.  When you have a professionally done video, you not get more visitors, but your chances of sales increases.  Moreover, getting professionally made Internet video ads is easier and more affordable than ever through a variety of services on the Internet.

When a potential customer searches the Internet for a service such as “Orlando plumber” Google and will first return a list of business that have been submitted to their local directory, followed by video search results, and then websites that have optimized for the search term “Orlando plumber”.  In order to stand out, you need to make sure you have a presence on all three of these types of search results.  The repetition of your business being listed at the top of a search 

engine result page will make you seem more relevant to your customer and get your site more visitors.

The other advantage that video provides is that it generates a lot of traffic.  As you already know, the key to having a successful business website is getting traffic.  Without traffic you have no leads and no sales.  Think of all the great websites, they have become great because they have lots of traffic.  They have done everything to become a familiar name on the Web and if you want your business to succeed, you must do the same.

When you create video and submit it to video sharing sites like YouTube, Yahoo! Video, Google Video, and MySpace you now expose your business and services to the millions of visitors who visit these sites.  The video submission of your Internet ads can also be done professionally to optimize the visitors they reach and to target a specific audience.

By now you have realized that video is an important component of your advertising.  Don’t procrastinate on implementing this strategy or believe that you cannot afford to produce your video.  There are lots of resources available on the Internet that can help you create video for the Web.  Get started today, so you can boost your bottom line.

Post provided by Aaron Rodgers who is a freelance writer who writes for a number of U.S. businesses.  For more information on video advertising for local businesses he recommends visiting SmallBizVids.com.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Google Quality Score - What You Need to Know

Many people have been confused over the concept of the Google Quality Score. In case you aren't aware, or don't participate in pay per click advertising on Google via AdWords, there's a new concept in town and it's name is "Build a page." That's correct, build a page that is specific for every keyword that you're targeting with your AdWords campaigns.

Google is asking that you have a targeted page for every keyword that you would like to advertise against. They're saying that if the keywords aren't in the title tag, content, and if the page isn't specific to the keywords that you would like to advertise against, there's a good chance that the page won't show up in the top Google AdWords listings, even if you're willing to pay or bid the highest amount for a listing there. This is the way that organic search has worked for a long time.

If you think about it, this isn't such a bad move by Google. They're protecting the user experience. They also may be indirectly protecting advertisers from spending their money on clicks that wouldn't be relevant or convert for them. Sounds like a win/win to me.

The other interesting thing about the AdWords Quality Score is its heavy weighing toward click through rate. If this is such an important aspect of the system because Google deems this as proving that an ad is valuable to a searcher, what's to say that they don't use the same metrics in their organic listings? The AdWords blog has reported that they often apply a "disabling rule" that inhibits ads with very low CTRs for a given query from being shown.

Many webmasters probably neglect optimizing their SERPs to entice users to click. If your site ranks number five or six, and is driving more clicks than the four, what's to say that Google won't reward you with better rankings for providing a better user experience? This is

n't to say that this is definitely a way that Google's algorithm works, but just an idea to get you thinking about how optimizing for pay per click can help out greatly in what you do for your organic campaign because, as Google says, "better ad relevance leads to a better user experience."

As a little refresher for those SEO newbies out there, you must have a few things to do well in organic search:

  1. A Web site that's deep in quality content (specific content to your industry).
  2. A Web site that is linked to by other relevant, quality Web sites.
  3. An older domain certainly doesn't hurt.
  4. A strategy and plan for execution of that strategy.

Developing a page for each keyword that you want to rank for makes sense, doesn't it? Search engines read text, so if you don't have the keywords on your page, you probably won't rank for those keywords.

Once you've developed these pages, make sure that you're giving each a unique title tag, keyword inclusion in the URL (if you can swing it, do something like www.example.com/keyword-phrase/), keyword inclusion in the header (H1), and keyword inclusion in the first paragraph of copy and links pointing to this page (internal and external links).

By optimizing your Web site for organic search, and building out a bunch of pages for each keyword that you're honestly interested in targeting, your pages might do well with Google's Quality Score algorithm. After all, it's starting to look more like the organic algorithm.

Join us for Search Engine Strategies Chicago December 8-12 at the Chicago Hilton. The only major search marketing conference and expo in the Midwest will be packed with 60-plus sessions, multiple keynotes and Orion Strategy sessions, exhibitors, networking events, and more.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Power Of Postcards: Enter To Win 250 Free Post Cards!

If you’re struggling to make the most of your marketing budget, consider using professionally created postcards. Unlike standard mail postcards are much more affordable and have a greater impact. (Enter to win our drawing for 250 free postcards – see below).

Direct mail can be very costly – but it doesn’t have to be. When trying to reach your prospects with a powerful marketing message, postcards cut through clutter. Individuals can see your offer without having to open an envelope and search through pages of promotional material. Integrated campaigns that provide multiple benefits improve response rates.

When developing a postcard campaign, consider these helpful marketing tips:

  1. Place a compelling offer on your postcard. Offers drive response. Your offer should include something of value such as a free report or aggressive discount.

  2. Go professional. Your postcards should be created from good stock and display images clearly. This signals your potential buyer to the quality and value that in inherent in your company, products, and services.

  3. Print contact information on your postcard. Be sure to include your1-800 number, email address, and website URL on each postcard for each identification.

  4. Focus on timing. Send your post cards at a time that is not interrupted by a holiday or national event. If your postcard is the only one in the mailbox it will stand out from other mail and receive a higher conversion rate.

  5. Test various formats and offers. Promotions are most effective when they are seen, read, and responded to. The best way to improve effectiveness is testing your campaigns with different messages, post card sizes, and offers.

Post card marketing is one of the most affordable and effective ways to generate sales. Start today by entering our sweepstakes for 250 free postcards! Simply follow these instructions:

How to Enter

1. Become a Fan of Postcards by logging into Facebook.com and going to the page:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Postcards/45814380258

2. Leave a comment at the end of this blog post, using your Facebook name/username and tell us what you would use the postcards for.

Prize

250 Postcards for 1 Lucky Reader

You can choose from any of our stocks, including the Extra Thick 14pt. Cover: Gloss (AQ), Matte or the 13 pt. Cover Uncoated (Recycled) stock at a size of 4x6.

Rules

Winners in the United States and Canada qualify for free shipping. Shipping fees will apply to winners outside these areas.

Postcards provide by UPrinting.com. UPrinting.com offers a full spectrum of printing services for postcards. We offer custom sizing and templates as well as design help through our U-Design service. We also offer mailing services to help you get your finished postcards out to your customers in an efficient, affordable and hassle free way.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Make Money With The Marketing Funnel

Two of the main concerns I hear over and over is from people telling me they don't have time for marketing, and that they are frustrated because they aren't converting interest into paying business. The good news is, the 'Marketing Funnel' can help you solve both problems.

So what exactly is a 'Marketing Funnel'?

If you picture a funnel, you know it's wide and open at the top, and tiny and narrow at the bottom. As prospects go through the stages from 'I want to know more about you' to 'You're hired' they effectively move through the marketing funnel. Now lots of people make the mistake of offering something free at the top of their marketing funnel, and then having their key product or service such as bespoke training, one-on-one coaching, or consulting package at the bottom of their marketing funnel, but nothing in between. I should know, it's a mistake I made myself for some time.

The trouble with this is, it's asking your prospects to make too big a jump in just one go. When you are selling any form of 'change' that training, coaching, therapy or consulting provide, the risk prospects face in taking us on is not only a financial risk, but an emotional one too. So the marketing funnel is a great business model. It helps you make your core proposition available at different price points, thus lowering the emotional and financial risk for your clients as they move further down the funnel.
The funnel system of marketing says that you offer your prospects and customers ever more elaborate products and services - and ever more intensive access to you - at ever increasing prices. In other words always offering people ways to spend more money with you. And whether you are selling training programmes to corporations, or personalised coaching to individuals, the theory still applies. In a nutshell the funnel system says: attract new clients and prospects into your funnel, then find ways to add more and more value to them - and as the value increases, so does the price!
An example of the Marketing Funnel: ~Top of Funnel~ Free newsletter with valuable and usable content ~Middle of Funnel~ Teleseminar $25 Workbook $69 Home study programme $250-500 Live Workshop $295-$1997 ~Bottom of Funnel~ One-to-one coaching $3000-5000 Business Consulting Programme $10,000 and up.

The ideal marketing funnel should be a win for you and your clients. Many people who would not otherwise be able to afford your services get access to your expertise for a lower fee than hiring you one-on-one. The benefit to you is that the marketing funnel really helps you leverage your time earning much, much more money per hour.
First it radically cuts down your one-to-one selling time. Clients move through the funnel at their own pace. (As long as you have a system in place for encouraging through the funnel. And of course you can automate this. (My upcoming Launch Your Information Empire DVD package shows you how) This way, by the time someone is considering your higher priced programme they have already bought and used several of your products or services.

All that huffing and puffing, convincing and persuading, proving and demonstrating, pleading and begging that currently drains so much of your precious time and energy - gone! There is no selling or persuading to be done. They already recognise the value you have to offer. They are effectively 'pre-sold'. The other advantage of the marketing funnel is that it helps prospects become paying clients much earlier in the process. Your income increases, and this new income comes from largely passive sources such as books, audio programmes or home study courses.

The Marketing Funnel Can Work For You Too

Take a moment or two to draw YOUR marketing funnel. See where the gaps are, and start thinking about what products you can add to make it easier for your prospects to sample your expertise and take a lower risk step to being a paying client. Offering something for free - a newsletter like this, or a free report is the ideal way to get people into your funnel initially. Then you need to create some basic solutions that can help clients start benefiting from your expertise in a low cost/low risk way.

This post provided by Bernadette Doyle. Bernadette Doyle created Client Magnets Ltd to help the self-employed attract a steady stream of clients. She has attracted a loyal following who praise her down to earth yet inspiring approach. If you like this article, you'll love Bernadette's marketing and success training products and programmes at http://www.clientmagnets.com/ to help you develop a business that suits YOUR preferred lifestyle.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

How Marketing Helps You Renew Your Business

Today's Marketing Tip: Use Marketing to Renew Your Customers.

There have been times when my marketing colleagues sit in a room and discuss current customers who have subscribed to a service - wondering how to encourage them to renew their services with use. I believe this discussion to be completely useless.

The best time to renew a client is from the first day after a sale. You need to provide evidence of value to your existing customers from day one... not just day's before their service expires. Do you have products or services that must be renewed on a regular basis?

Think about engagement. Do you engage your customer in a dialog throughout the year? There are a number of tactics for doing so that will help you engage your customer, develop a relationships and prove value.

1. Newsletters or announcements. Each month, give yourself and your company a reason to reach out to
your customers with information that's valuable to them. Don't underestimate the power of frequent communication. Be flexible with your content and include opportunities to solicit feedback from your customers.

2. Customer surveys. Ask your customers through an online survey what matters most to them. Show them that their opinion matters. But don't stop there. Once you ask them to complete a survey, college the responses and analyze them. Once you have something meaningful to share, distribute your findings. Customers will see the value your provide and develop more trust in you and your services.

3. Share best practices. Whether it's a white paper, brief, or forum, share information you've learned from you customers and distribute to a larger group. Share these findings in various formats. This shows that you value your customers' time and want to make them successful.

These are just a few of the tactics for communicating the value of your products and services to your customers. When it comes time to renew, you won't have to sell. Your customers will inherently know and feel that value you've provided over the past year.

Remember, the time to renew is now. Don't wait until days before the subscription is about to end to make your first contact. As they say, get out in front of the curve. Over time, this strategy will help you exceed your sales goals and allow you to develop a large following.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Creating Website Is As Easy As 1-2-3

Before you start fiddling around with HTML editors, FTP clients, and Domain registrations, it's important to have at least a basic understanding of how all this works. This Website creation overview gives you an easy to understand look at what the process of building your own Website really involves.

A website is a collection of files that work together to form a unified whole. These various files, from images to HTML documents and PHP scripts, or instructional software, are organized by a Web browser and displayed appropriately on a computer monitor.



Website creation is essentially the process arranging information in a way that can be translated by Web browsing software, such as Internet Explorer, and presented to human viewers. To do this correctly you'll need to gain a basic understanding of coding languages like HTML, CSS, and possibly PHP.

The process of coding your site is literally the activity of entering numerous individual lines of alphanumeric code that tell the Web browser how to format and display your Web page. While seemingly complex at first, the truth is learning the most basic Web development code -- HTML -- is less complicated than learning to use the English alphabet.

Once you learn what the various command codes actually do, your next step is to practice organizing them in a structured manner within an HTML document. This is not unlike the process of creating a word processing document and saving it; the only difference is that instead of sentences and paragraphs you'll be entering HTML tags and attributes.

Once your files are complete
, they'll need to be added to your Web host so other Internet users can access them. The Web host, or server, is a powerful computer that operates around the clock.

It is here that all the files and data that make up your Website will be stored. And you'll need to register a domain name and synchronize this domain with your host machine so people can type an easily remembered Web address into their browser and literally navigate to your Website by establishing a connection with your host server.

In addition to learning how to create and save basic HTML documents, Website creation requires some level of proficiency in transferring files between your computer and a Web server. This is called File Transfer Protocol, or FTP for short.

To do this, you'll need a software tool called an FTP client. This utility is installed on your desktop and can instantly form a connection with your Web host, allowing you to upload files to the Web or download them to your machine.

It is also recommended that you become familiar with the directory structure and hosting control panel your Web host provides. This will make it easier for you to manage your Website.

This sounds like a lot of work. But the truth is the average Internet user can become basically versed in all of this within 30 days or less if he or she puts forth an effort to learn.

It's beyond the scope of this article to delve into the specifics of any particular technique. But I hope at this point you at least have an understanding of what is involved in learning the Website Creation process.

About the Author: Timothy Aaron Whiston - Quickly and easily learn Web design with the author's amazing online course. You'll be a Webmaster in no time with this Web design course at your disposal.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

PPC Bully: Improve Your Pay Per Click Advertising Instantly!

Today's Good Marketing Tip: PPC Bully.

In the last couple of years, most marketers have increased their spend on Pay Per Click advertising at a faster rate than any other type of marketing. Why? Because Pay-per-click advertising, a.k.a PPC, is one of the most effective ways to target your prospects with the right message at the right time. And the greatest aspect of PPC? It's measurable.

As an online marketer, I have companies asking me to review their products on a daily basis. To be truthful, I only review those products that I think can provide benefit to whatever I happen to be working on at the moment. I know it might seem selfish, but I'm only interested in tools that are going to improve my marketing results.

Enter PPC Bully. For the last couple of months, I've been spending a lot of time improving my pay per click results. I think the major driver is that sales on some of my key products are slowing - due to the lagging economy and reluctance of consumers to spend. As a result, I've been looking toward PPC to help manage my marketing budget and improve results.
What I found unique about this product is that it helped me to create profitable, fully optimized PPC campaigns, the minute I launched them.

As you already know, pay-per-click campaigns take a lotof trial and error. You set up your keywords, write yourads and track conversions until you find just the rightcombination that works the best.

PPC Bully, a brand new research and analysis tool, allows you to know up front what works - and what doesn't. You get to see exactly what your competitors are doing, cash inon their "test" and launch with the most lucrative combinations possible. To better understand how PPC Bully works, check out the demo video on their homepage. It walks you through the basic process.

I guarantee that you will be amazed at how helpful and beneficial this tool can be for your marketing efforts. I was using two other tools to help with my PPC and I've stopped using them in exchange for this one. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Simple Search Strategies

There's no question that search engine optimization is a field straddling science and art. As competition to command search rankings has exploded, SEO strategies have become increasingly elegant and complicated. Most marketers and business owners these days end up toiling over complex SEO solutions in pursuit of the-next-best-thing. Progress has its drawbacks, though. Many seasoned business owners actually overlook simple, yet highly effective, SEO strategies that could skyrocket their business in the search rankings.

One such strategy is to use popular key words that are relevant to your business in your Web site's or landing page's URL. Given that SEO experts and business owners regularly research, then pepper their Web pages with top key words and tinker with their placement, simply using the words in the URL may sound too easy. Don't be fooled by its simplicity, though. This strategy works.

Simple strategies still require due diligence. For example, with MP Creative, we started by performing extensive key word research. “Portland,” “Oregon,” “marketing” and “advertising” were among the most active key terms relevant to the business. We then purchased the domains portlandoregonmarketing.com and portlandoregonadvertising.com, and placed landing pages on both sites that were also keyword-rich. The outcome was astonishing. Even though Portland is home to some of the top marketing and advertising firms in the nation, our start-up sky-rocketed to number one on Yahoo! in searches for such businesses within a week.

So why was such a simple strategy so effective? Again, one of the primary reasons is that advanced SEO marketers and business owners regularly overlook like the simplest approach. This is a great opportunity for a smaller business to elbow in on the big guys. Another reason is that this particular strategy's simplicity is actually its edge. By placing top key words in the URL, spiders from sites like Google and Yahoo don't have to crawl through an entire page of content before locating these words. That means that such a Web site will get noticed more quickly by these search engines, which could result in your page moving up in search rankings for those particular terms more quickly.

While there is tremendous allure in developing complex SEO tactics, case studies like these demonstrate that it's important not to forget simple strategies.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Every Marketer Knows the Importance of Link Building for Their Websites

Link building is one of the biggest SEO tasks. It can often be confusing and difficult to come up with ideas of how to get started. Let's explore a couple of different techniques for using Yahoo Search to help you find some juicy targets by looking at your competitor's links.



For example, let's say you're looking to build links to Nissan USA. First, look at the backlinks of your major competitor's sites using the link domain command. Here are the results you might get from this exercise:

http://www.ford.com -- 236,000 backlinks (using: linkdomain:ford.com -site:ford.com)

http://www.chevrolet.com -- 144,000 backlinks (using: linkdomain:chevrolet.com -site:chevrolet.com)

http://www.gmc.com -- 214,000 backlinks (using: linkdomain:gm.com -site:gm.com)

Note that the "-site:" part of the command is there to screen out the internal links on the site. After all, your focus is on the external Web sites linking to them, not their internal links.

Nonetheless, this is still a bit overwhelming. You've checked out three competitive sites, and they all have more than 100,000 backlinks. This project might be a bit more than your summer intern can tackle.

To begin narrowing this down, see who links to all of the competitors you're targeting. You can do that by using a command such as: linkdomain:ford.com linkdomain:chevrolet.com linkdomain:gm.com.

This identifies the Web pages that link to all three domains, Ford, Chevrolet, and GM. This is interesting because if a Web page links to more than one car company (in this case Ford and GM, and GM's sub-brand Chevrolet), it's likely that it's an article meant to be a bit more of a roundup of sorts.

In any event, the results from this query look like this:

This gives you 3,360 links targets. But there's one remaining flaw in this output: if you start contacting all of these Web sites about these various pages, you may end up contacting sites that already link to yours. This can be embarrassing at best, and even worse, result in the removal of your link.

So it's best to refine the command to something like: linkdomain:ford.com linkdomain:chevrolet.com linkdomain:gm.com -linkdomain:nissanusa.com

Here's what the results end up becoming once you use this form of the command:

Notice how the volume of links dropped from 3,630 to 3,100. You have successfully filtered out 530 links that already link to the Nissan USA site. Now it's much more plausible to hand off this campaign work to your intern.

However, some additional filtering may still be valuable. For example, you may want to isolate news-oriented sites, and handle them a bit differently than other types of sites. You may even hand these over to your PR firm.

You can target a command at such sites using a command such as: linkdomain:ford.com linkdomain:chevrolet.com linkdomain:gm.com -linkdomain:nissanusa.com "news"

The command is admittedly a bit imperfect (because a site could mention the word news without being a news site or page), but should still act as a pretty good filter. There are many flavors of this. For example, you can also isolate ".edu" domains quite easily, using a command in this form: linkdomain:ford.com linkdomain:chevrolet.com linkdomain:gm.com -linkdomain:nissanusa.com site:.edu

Here are the results you get from that command:

There may be only 41 of these, but they're likely to be juicy targets, and worth approaching individually. Links such as these are likely some type of overview of the automobile industry, and if you were Nissan USA, you may feel like you belong on the list!

Summary

Link building is often a slow and arduous process that unfolds over a long period of time. But the rewards are large and it's a fundamental requirement for marketing any Web site, regardless of how established it may be.

Creative link research can provide you with some real advantages. It focuses your link building efforts on targets that are likely to provide a high response rate (or a high success rate) and also likely to be pretty meaningful links.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

5 Simple Ways to Improve Your Internet Business

If you're looking to improve your Internet business, follow each of these marketing tips. As the Internet becomes more competitive, you need to think about what you consider your measure of success.

1. The first step is to understand what it means to be part of a successful online business.

Is success measured by money, the amount of customers the business receives or the output? Is it all three of these? or none?



While most people think that success is measured by money, it is actually measured by the amount of output a company generates. In today's society, many measure their success depending on the amount of income they receive. This is not right. A good company exports more than they import, which in turn generates a profit. But the exporting is what makes the company successful.

2. Target the demographics of the product you are selling.

Is your product geared towards youth, middle-aged or senior citizens? It is more towards males or females?

Once you target the demographics of consumers you are looking for, you will be able to begin to advertise for this specific group of people. In trying to pinpoint a younger age group, it would be more logical to advertise on a site like MTV rather than one for nursing homes.

3. Knowing how to decorate the webpage.

Presentation is extremely important. If you are watching your favorite show on tv and during the commercial break there shows a man in front of the camera speaking in a monotone voice about a certain medication, chances are you will not be drawn to this commercial and will instead change the channel.

Design your website so that it appeals to the eye. Use bright colors and flashy logos. This is proven to work.

4. Make the website easily accessible.

Have you ever gone online to look at a webpage and forgot the URL? Well, if this has happened to you, you know how stressful it is.

Allow the company to be easily pulled up on search engines such as google, yahoo, altavista or any other. This way, if a customer is looking to find the website but cannot remember the exact address, they could google the company name and find it easily.

Even better, design a URL which can be easily remembered. If your company's name is, say, Generation, try to grab the URL with generation in it. Easy and straight to the point, exactly what customers like.

5. Take every chance you get to advertise.

In today's day and age with the bad financial market, it seems likely that people are not trying to spend money. But, if they see an advertisement for a product that they just cannot live without, they might be more pressured to buy it.

Use television, newspapers, magazines and other online websites to advertise for your product. This will get your company's name out there.

These five hints will prove to be helpful in improving your online business. They are easy and extremely effective!

This post provided by http://www.DiegoNorte.com

 
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