Search Engine Marketing News - 2006-11-01

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Hi Everyone,

Thanks again to Lisa Stewart of Big Foot Web Marketing and Karri Flatla of snap! virtual assistance for filling in as guest bloggers this week.

Have a great week!

Robert Clough

Thanks to our sponsors for keeping this a free newsletter...



Think You Have a Fabulous Website?
Think Again.

snap! virtual assistance inc. Successful entrepreneurs know that money-making websites are no accident. Ask yourself:
  • Does my website's content attract prospects like a magnet?
  • Does my website's sales copy evoke emotion and desire?
  • Does my website's design put information at people’s fingertips?

If you answered "No" to even one of these questions, you are losing potential sales every single day.

snap! virtual assistance inc. will make your website work harder. So you don't have to.
Visit www.snap-va.com now. Then contact us by email or phone for a free consult.

Because what you don't know CAN hurt you.

 

Search Engine Marketing Articles

Opening Sentences That Close the Sale
by Karon Thackston - Your job, as the copywriter, is to entice them into each segment so they will consume as much of your copy as possible. Take your cue from Reader's Digest. They crank out — issue after issue — exceptional opening lines for their articles that engage then hook readers. What happens next? The reader is pulled into the story full force.

Search Engine Marketing - Is There an Over-Reliance on Google
by Jody Nimetz - As online marketers we are trying to help our clients gain a presence within the search engine results. A recent Comscore Report suggests that in the US, Google happens to have the largest search engine market share with over 44%. So it stands to reason that we should concentrate the majority of our efforts on Google.

Organic SEO or Pay-Per-Click Advertising - Which Should You Choose?
by Scott Buresh - When people hear about online marketing, they often think of two of the more popular methods that a company can use to enhance its visibility on the Web: organic search engine optimization and pay-per-click advertising. In an ideal world, you would use both strategically to maximize your site's profile. However, budgetary constraints often make this impossible, and trying to do both on a limited budget or with minimal resources can result in neither campaign producing ideal results.

Ross Dunn Answers SEO Questions #4
by Ross Dunn - Quality inbound links are indeed an extremely important element of any promotion and when many are obtained I am certain they are a significant cause for rankings.

Measuring Visitor Engagement and Behavior
by Manoj Jasra - When visitors arrive on your website, what are they doing? Is it what you want or expect them to do; or are they aimlessly wandering around and not finding what they came in looking? Are your potential customers abandoning your site just seconds after their arrival? If you are puzzled because you don't know what visitors are doing, or why, then how can you ever create a decent strategy to offer your visitors a better experience on your website?

Avoiding SEO Pitfalls
by Bruce Clay - This year, with the cost of Pay Per Click (PPC) keyword advertising prices up and dwindling search inventory, experts are predicting an increase in SEO campaigns. But, as always, buyer beware. Due diligence is wise when planning any marketing campaign. When you plan your search engine optimization campaign, there are a few pitfalls you must avoid.

 

Search Engine Guide Blog Posts

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 11 – Cross Your “T”s and Dot Your “I”s
If you want your visitors to take you seriously, then you have to get serious about your image. The fact is, people DO judge a book by its cover (or a website by its appearance). In other words, if your site was going to a job interview, would the interviewer cross it off the list as a candidate because of sloppy appearance? No matter how qualified you are for “the job,” you won’t make the short list if it looks like you don’t care. Sometimes, success is in the details. A few that are worth attending to:

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 10 – Forms Shouldn’t Look Like Forms
One of the reasons the Internet is such a beautiful thing for business people and consumers alike is the paperless aspect. During the course of a lifetime, most people fill out enough long, tedious paper forms to wipe out a small rain forest. Don’t lose a captive visitor at your Contact or Quote Request page because of an unwieldy feedback form. The sight of all those blanks to fill out, required or not, puts most users into the fetal position faster than you can say “Submit.” Unless you are the FBI, do you really have a right to ask someone you don’t even know for his telephone number? It’s rude and can be likened to asking a stranger for her phone number in a sleazy bar.

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 9 - Get Real
Even if you’ve done a superb selling job, your visitors will stop dead in their tracks if for some reason it crosses their mind that you might not trustworthy. Never assume that certain facts about your establishment are “just a given.” Anyone with a computer, Internet access, and a few bucks to pay for a template, a domain, and hosting can put up a website. And trustworthiness is difficult to intuit on the web. Instead, give clear, pointed reassurance that you are what you say you are, being sure to include the following where appropriate:

Opening Sentences That Close the Sale
Your job, as the copywriter, is to entice them into each segment so they will consume as much of your copy as possible. Take your cue from Reader's Digest. They crank out — issue after issue — exceptional opening lines for their articles that engage then hook readers. What happens next? The reader is pulled into the story full force. (skip to "Opening Sentences That Close the Sale" by Karon Thackston)

Secrets of a Professional Link Builder, Part 2: Anchor Text Away!
Anchor text can be a very powerful tool when looking to get higher rankings in the search engines. Time and time again well meaning site owners will make the effort to find link placements and then inadvertently diminish the potential power of the link .

Search Engine Marketing - Is There an Over-Reliance on Google
As online marketers we are trying to help our clients gain a presence within the search engine results. A recent Comscore Report suggests that in the US, Google happens to have the largest search engine market share with over 44%. So it stands to reason that we should concentrate the majority of our efforts on Google. (skip to "Search Engine Marketing - Is There an Over-Reliance on Google" by Jody Nimetz)

Trust Rank Explained
I was about to write an article on Trust Rank and what it is and why it is important- however I realized it all ready been explained perfectly by Old Welsh Guy, of Umbrella Consultancy.

JotSpot Acquired By Google
Google acquires collaborative authoring social software company, JotSpot.

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 8 - Different is Good. Annoying is Bad.
Today’s Internet shopper has a very short attention span. Despite faster and faster connection speeds, most users just don’t wanna sit still to watch a lame Flash intro. They have better things to do . . . like spend money. Yet with new and emerging web software so readily available, so titillating and cheap, it’s hard to resist adding the latest gimmick to your site, isn’t it?

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 7 - Didn’t I Say it Wasn’t About You? (See Tactic 1)
When you’re entertaining guests in your home, do you welcome them at the door, take their coats, ask about their kids, and then offer them a drink? Or do you yank them inside, grab them by the scruff of the neck, and march them over to your favorite piece of art and force them to stare at it for five minutes before saying Hello? Or maybe you stick them in front of your high-output subwoofers and crank up your favorite Pink Floyd album until their ears bleed?

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 6 - Navigation Should, Uh, Help People Navigate Stuff
Effective navigation can help both rankings and clickthroughs. Your website’s primary navigation should clearly indicate what each section is about. And if you can’t sum it up in three words or less, that’s probably a good indication your pages need to be more topically focused. For example, if you offer three types of real estate services, place a “Real Estate Services” button in your primary navigation and then link to sub-pages for each of your services from the Services main page and/or various other locations within the site.

Link Building and Link Bait: Using Google " Related"
One way way to find potential sites to link from is to use "related:YOURSITE.com" function. Sometimes I am just stuck for ideas and exhausted every conceivable place to establish a connection. I pretty much never use automated software for link building and avoid links for links sake type trades. Most of the links I garner are from relationship building. Sites offering the same service or product are usually reluctant to offer you up a link from their site going to their competition. I have much more success going after a related site. For example, working with an online florist, I can write content related to wedding flowers or planning a wedding publish on the site and and then go to any of the thousands and thousands of wedding related sites, blogs and forums.

Organic SEO or Pay-Per-Click Advertising - Which Should You Choose?
When people hear about online marketing, they often think of two of the more popular methods that a company can use to enhance its visibility on the Web: organic search engine optimization and pay-per-click advertising. In an ideal world, you would use both strategically to maximize your site's profile. However, budgetary constraints often make this impossible, and trying to do both on a limited budget or with minimal resources can result in neither campaign producing ideal results. (skip to "Organic SEO or Pay-Per-Click Advertising - Which Should You Choose?" by Scott Buresh)

Ross Dunn Answers SEO Questions #4
Quality inbound links are indeed an extremely important element of any promotion and when many are obtained I am certain they are a significant cause for rankings. (skip to "Ross Dunn Answers SEO Questions #4" by Ross Dunn)

"Choice Kills Conversion"
An excellent post in Jonathan Mendez's blog, Choice Kills Conversion

Too often websites, landing pages and even ads decrease the odds of conversion by presenting considerations to users when they are already past the consideration stage and ready to buy.

New Blog Software- VOX and Potential Applications
New blogging software called Vox, allows users to set 5 levels of privacy settings. You can control who sees what and how much.

Measuring Visitor Engagement and Behavior
When visitors arrive on your website, what are they doing? Is it what you want or expect them to do; or are they aimlessly wandering around and not finding what they came in looking? Are your potential customers abandoning your site just seconds after their arrival? If you are puzzled because you don't know what visitors are doing, or why, then how can you ever create a decent strategy to offer your visitors a better experience on your website? (skip to "Measuring Visitor Engagement and Behavior" by Manoj Jasra)

Avoiding SEO Pitfalls
This year, with the cost of Pay Per Click (PPC) keyword advertising prices up and dwindling search inventory, experts are predicting an increase in SEO campaigns. But, as always, buyer beware. Due diligence is wise when planning any marketing campaign. When you plan your search engine optimization campaign, there are a few pitfalls you must avoid. (skip to "Avoiding SEO Pitfalls" by Bruce Clay)

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 5 - Meta Tags and Titles (This Won’t Hurt a Bit)
A few hours spent writing unique titles and descriptions for each page of your site is insignificant compared to the increase in traffic that results. Page titles tell the search engines what your site is about, and meta descriptions give searchers something compelling to click on in the search engine results pages. Additionally, using keywords in your <Title> tags further boosts each page’s calculated relevance to a particular subject.

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 4 - Hyperlink Your Calls to Action
The only reason I can think of that most websites don’t capitalize on this tactic is that it just seems too easy. Yet the simple act of hyperlinking a call to action accomplishes two very important goals:

(1) It increases interaction between your site and your visitor.
(2) It gives the search engines one more tip-off as to what your site is all about.

14 Tactics to Make Your Website Work Harder Right Now: Tactic 3 - Create Textual Stepping Stones to the Finish Line
Is there anything worse than landing on a web page filled with big long paragraphs of unformatted text, hardly a headline in site? You feel as if you’re being forced to study for a test, not get ready to put some cash on the table. Break up long paragraphs into shorter “chunks” separated by bolded headlines. Then go one step further.

Internet Marketing: Increasing Traffic with FireFox's StumbleUpon Extension
Using FireFox extension StumbleUpon to increase your web traffic.

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Search Engine Books & Services (Classifieds)

How to get top 10 rankings on Google and Yahoo!
Internet Marketing experts and computer magazines recommend this tool.

Skaffe.com Directory: Show off your website Express Submit today.
Quality directories like Skaffe.com offer you strong search engine exposure.

Sporge Directory – from Skaffe.com
Under new management! All new with low submission prices.

WoW Directory
Powerful and affordable directory marketing services. Submit your website today!

New! Team Skaffe Directory from the editors of Skaffe.com
Up to 4 links for every submission. Free submission for non-commercial websites.

Free SEO Tools
Thinking of buying SEO software? Then try the best SEO tools free first!

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Discussion Threads of the Week
(Links to search engine forum discussion threads that deal with search engine marketing topics. Each listing provides the topic, the source, and a brief snippet from the discussion.)

Dumb Mistakes Resulting in Loss of Adsense Revenue
Webmaster World - "Members contribute heads up warnings to others, newbees or seasoned pros, to NOT make the same mistakes that they have."

Google COOP: How will it affect natural SEO?
Search Engine Watch Forums - "The decision makers in my company are afraid that the introduction of a 'custom' search engine is going to bring the world of natural SEO to a screeching halt. Do you guys have any feedback on Google coop, and give me your opinions on whether you think this new tool will have an influence, if any, on the way that google ranks the sites that it indexes?"

Google Has Acquired JotSpot
Search Engine Watch Forums - "Discuss Google's most recent acquisition."

Google SEO Mythbusters - what is proven and what is guesswork?
Webmaster World Forum - "What SEO 'facts' are in fact facts and not just widely accepted rumours and myth? What facts are supported with hard evidence?"

Del.icio.us Wishlist Feature, Code to Use on Ecommerce Site?
High Rankings Forum - "Is it possible to put a link on my product pages saying something like 'Click here to add this product to your Del.icio.us Wishlist?' What would it take to code something like this in a standard webpage?"

Googling With Google Is Good, But Very Bad Elsewhere
Webmaster World - "Do you Google? Google tries to clarify the use of its trademark."

Coming Soon: Yahoo Directory Tag, With 'No' Option
Webmaster World - "What do you think is the right approach a different tag or should the NOODP tag apply to both Yahoo Directory and ODP?"

NYT calls Google Bombing a 'campaign tactic'
Search Engine Watch Forums - "Can SEO really affect political campaigns during the upcoming elections in the US?"

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From the Small Business Ideas Forum...
(If you like our search engine news, you'll love our small business news.)

Help Critique My New Print Ad
"I have an ad currently running in a local 'Coffee News' distribution, and would like to start a new promo for my computer repair company in the next edition I can get it in. I've only got a tiny 3" x 2" space (as big as you can get) and here's what I've come up with so far..."

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Think You Have a Fabulous Website?
Think Again.

snap! virtual assistance inc. Successful entrepreneurs know that money-making websites are no accident. Ask yourself:
  • Does my website's content attract prospects like a magnet?
  • Does my website's sales copy evoke emotion and desire?
  • Does my website's design put information at people’s fingertips?

If you answered "No" to even one of these questions, you are losing potential sales every single day.

snap! virtual assistance inc. will make your website work harder. So you don't have to.
Visit www.snap-va.com now. Then contact us by email or phone for a free consult.

Because what you don't know CAN hurt you.

 

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