Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Good Marketing Tip: Free Traffic Isn't All That Bad

If you're anything like me, you probably like to get things for free. I'm a big fan of getting something at little or no cost - especially if I've never used the product or service in the past.

About a year ago, a friend turned me onto traffic exchanges which are either free or cost very little, for driving traffic to my web site. Most web site owners struggle with generating traffic to their web sites. Unless you have a strong viral appeal, building traffic can take time and cost a significant amount of money.

The concept of a traffic exchange is easy. You essentially browse other peoples web sites and web pages. When you view their sites you earn credits. As you accumulate credits, they can be used to generate traffic to your web site.

To utilize your credits, you enter the URLs you want to promote into the traffic exchange administration panel. You then set the number of credits you would like to use up each day. For example, if you surf to earn about 100 credits per day, you may choose to display your page 100 times (assuming that one credit equals one page view).

The key to making traffic exchanges work is to use them consistently and use squeeze pages or special offers so that users not only visit your site once, but multiple times. This creates an ongoing traffic stream that only increases over time.

The two most popular traffic exchanges are Traffic Swarm and Easy Hits 4U. Both of these cost nothing to join but do offer additional premium options for a small fee. The premium options essentially let you buy credits. If you want to utilize the power of the exchanges without surfing, premium options let you do that. It's all up to you. Personally, I like the no cost options.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Web 3.0 Is Here To Stay: Coming To An Online Retailer Now!

Social media is all the rage. It seems to permeate almost every conversation people are having today - but it wasn't always that way. I guess the the concept of Web 2.0 has taken on a life of its own. Many people are asking what's next for the Web when we think about it's evolution.

The question we need to be asking ourselves now is essentially what's next for the web. Will we be focusing on second life and avatars or is there some other direction we will be going in? The answer is already here in the form of Web 3.0. The evolution of the web is based upon sites that utilize consumer behavior to improve the user experience.

The idea behind Web 3.0 is really simple. Leverage the data you have on individuals to improve their future buying experiences. This data comes from a variety of sources but is designed to eliminate the endless searching you might do for a simple task online.

Enter behavioral data and the concept of Web 3.0. In the next iteration of the web world, users' activities are being tracked closely. These activities include a range of behaviors like their on-site behavior, purchase history, order frequency, size, and quantity as well as tastes and preferences they have exhibited while surfing the Net.

The beauty of behavioral data and predictive modeling is that past data can be used. Tools like a retail recommender or recommendation engine take this data combined with real time behavioral data to make sophisticated calculations that are designed to shape the buying experience. Web 3.0 allows for updating and refining that information in real time. As more behavior is tracked, profiles become more robust and more accurate.

Web 3.0 intelligence anonymously and securely analyzes every customer and web browser to your website. Learning patterns and the context that drives buying decisions will be used to create a highly personalized user experience for each individual. This may be a point of concern for all of you privacy buffs out there but the reality is that web sites track user behavior today and the information becomes more and more sophisticated.

Some individuals are going to be significantly concerned about what data is being tracked and how that information is being used. I believe that all users must give their permission to be fully engaged in a Web 3.0 world. Once information is given, the user experience can be liberating, allowing your past behavior to shape your buying experience. This might actually cut down on much of the inaccurate and unrelated solicitations you receive today.

Web 3.0 is upon us. As web sites continue to collect and use more of your behavioral data, your online buying experience is going to change. One can argue if this change is for the better. However, I believe that it can dramatically improve your buying experience and improve the way retailers market products and services.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Today's Marketing Tip: Article Marketing To Do's

For your article to be optimized follow these simple techniques...

* Keyword density is between 1.5-2.0% to avoid a Google-slap for keyword stuffing.

* If you provide the keyword list for your page meta tags, sprinkle them throughout the piece as well to boost your quality score with the search engines.

* Keep the voice as friendly, informative but authoritative; building your reputation as an expert in the field.

* Keep word count between 500-800 words – the optimum size for distribution.

Follow these guidelines and make sure you avoid duplicate content penalties.  Get more great marketing advice at the Internet marketing forum.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Getting Results With Twitter

Wondering how to use Twitter for marketing?  This is a common topic today among marketers and the answer might be something different than what your expecting.  It's certainly not what you're probably finding on Twitter today.

Most of what you see are people Tweeting about "Make money with X" and providing a link.  We all know this is an affiliate link and they're just trying to make money.  Okay, it's a free market economy, I get it.  But I also know that people hate to be sold.  I have no interest in signing up for a sales person to visit me all day every day - not my idea of fun.

So, if you're wondering how to make Twitter work for you, put yourself in the shoes of your audience.  How can you create value for them?  Use Twitter to give stuff away, provide information, and ultimately build your list.  We all know the power is in the list so get users to sign up for a free eCourse, download, or feed.  

Twitter is for building a following and getting people through the door.  That's the first step to selling them.  Anyone trying to sell directly on Twitter is in for a big disappointment.

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