Search Engine Marketing News - 2007-03-07

Hi Everyone,

Lot's of info so let's get right to it...

Have a great week!

Robert Clough



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Search Engine Marketing Articles

Expanding Services and SEO
by Jill Whalen - The question from an SEO standpoint is, would they be better off with a new domain name and website for the business side, or a home page that says business clients click here, individual clients click here, etc.

10 Quick Ways to Increase Conversions
by Stoney deGeyter - My SEO firm has been spending a good deal of time analyzing conversion and usability aspects for our clients over the past year. While there are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of things that can be changed to help improve conversion rates, we've created a short list of things that are both quick and easy to change or add to your site.

Understanding the Search Buying Cycle
by Jennifer Laycock - While it's easy enough to envision a potential customer heading off to Yahoo or Google, conducting a search, clicking through and making a purchase, the reality is that the online sales process is more complicated than that. This is because online shoppers tend to take some time doing research and following the "search buying cycle" before settling on a product and a web site to purchase it from.

Generate Customer Loyalty With Email
by Claudia Bruemmer - Marketing 101 tells us that it costs less to engage an existing customer than to acquire a new one. Lawrence Friedman’s The Channel Advantage puts it this way: "The cost of acquiring new customers is typically three to six times that of retaining existing ones." The conundrum is that while new buyers contribute to sales growth, the process of acquisition is costly.

Don't Think Click Fraud, Think Negative ROI
by Gord Hotchkiss - But when you do an honest appraisal on the issue, the search engines would rather we get over our preoccupation with click fraud and start thinking of it as part of a much bigger whole, the return we get on our search marketing investment. This in no way negates the importance of click fraud as an issue.

Yahoo Panama - Pros and Cons
by Scott Van Achte - Near the end of 2006 Yahoo officially unveiled the new back end for Yahoo Marketing Solutions, widely referred to as the ‘Panama’ Update. Since then they have been slowly allowing the upgrading of accounts from the old into the new system. While not everyone has had a chance to have their accounts switched over, it is expected that all will be upgraded by the end of this quarter.

Publishing Your Prices – the Sequel
by Karri Flatla - Are we so accustomed to the vastness of modern media that we've forgotten consumers are always a click or two away from a zillion and one alternatives to our humble offerings? Today's consumer is on high alert for answers, answers, answers. There is little reason to gamble away time trying to get those answers out of you the seller when better answers—easier to find answers—are so tantalizingly available.

 

Search Engine Guide Blog Posts

Jill Whalen's High Rankings Conference in Minneapolis
With all the talk about small search marketing conferences lately, it seems fitting to remind readers that one of the longest-running "small" search engine marketing conferences has another show coming up in Minneapolis, MN at the end of next week. The High Rankings seminars feature half a dozen of the top names from the industry (including Jill Whalen, Karen Thackston and Matt Bailey) in a two day seminar that's small enough to give you a real chance to run through some Q&A with the speakers.

Blog Readers are a Loyal Bunch
It's long been understood that blogs attract visitors. The huge shift toward the introduction of blogs by thought leaders, businesses and your everyday web user has been well documented over the past few years. What's interesting is just how dedicated blog readers are, as shown by a new study released by Advertising Age and online market research service Vizu Answers.

Expanding Services and SEO
The question from an SEO standpoint is, would they be better off with a new domain name and website for the business side, or a home page that says business clients click here, individual clients click here, etc. (skip to "Expanding Services and SEO" by Jill Whalen)

10 Quick Ways to Increase Conversions
My SEO firm has been spending a good deal of time analyzing conversion and usability aspects for our clients over the past year. While there are literally hundreds, if not thousands, of things that can be changed to help improve conversion rates, we've created a short list of things that are both quick and easy to change or add to your site. (skip to "10 Quick Ways to Increase Conversions" by Stoney deGeyter)

Understanding the Search Buying Cycle
While it's easy enough to envision a potential customer heading off to Yahoo or Google, conducting a search, clicking through and making a purchase, the reality is that the online sales process is more complicated than that. This is because online shoppers tend to take some time doing research and following the "search buying cycle" before settling on a product and a web site to purchase it from. (skip to "Understanding the Search Buying Cycle" by Jennifer Laycock)

Some Words With Matt Cutts on Personalized Search
The news that Google was moving toward personalizing search results a few weeks ago has produced a bit of worry among some search marketers. After all, when the search results are different for everyone, how to you work on increasing the rankings of the site you are optimizing. With those concerns in mind, Gord Hotchkiss sat down to speak with Matt Cutts about how Google's plans to tailor search results to the searcher might impact the future of search engine optimization.

USA Today Expands into Consumer Generated Media
There's been quite a bit of buzz today about USA Today's decision to move their online publication into the realm of consumer generated media by allowing users to create profiles, add comments and tags to stories, upload their own photos of news events and even vote stories up or down with Digg-like recommendations.

Generate Customer Loyalty With Email
Marketing 101 tells us that it costs less to engage an existing customer than to acquire a new one. Lawrence Friedman’s The Channel Advantage puts it this way: "The cost of acquiring new customers is typically three to six times that of retaining existing ones." The conundrum is that while new buyers contribute to sales growth, the process of acquisition is costly. (skip to "Generate Customer Loyalty With Email" by Claudia Bruemmer)

Don't Think Click Fraud, Think Negative ROI
But when you do an honest appraisal on the issue, the search engines would rather we get over our preoccupation with click fraud and start thinking of it as part of a much bigger whole, the return we get on our search marketing investment. This in no way negates the importance of click fraud as an issue. (skip to "Don't Think Click Fraud, Think Negative ROI" by Gord Hotchkiss)

New SEO Classes Being Offered
Two groups of well known search marketers are teaming up to create two new search marketing classes. Each of these groups will be limiting the attendance at their seminars to make sure that every attendee has a chance to get some one on one interaction with the speakers. As someone who loves doing on-site training and small business seminars, I'm really excited to see more of these offerings showing up in the search marketing world.

Just Digg Into Your Wallet?
Andy Beal over at Marketing Pilgrim mentions a Wired article that exposes the reality of buying diggs. No, not "digs" that make fun of your company, but rather "Diggs" that help send your web site toward a server crashing load of just out of college techies that want to see what the fuss is all about. Much like DMOZ in its prime, Digg likes to claim that there's no way to game the system and that you can't buy your way in. Much like DMOZ in it's prime, Digg is wrong.

Google AdWords Takes Steps to Fight Click Fraud
Elinor Mills over at CNET is reporting that Google will be announcing plans to allow AdWords advertisers to block certain IP addresses from clicking on their ads as part of their ongoing battle against click fraud. That's good news to companies that have been frustrated with suspect clicks in their paid search advertising accounts. Google also plans to introduce a new standardized interface for click fraud reporting and investigations by mid-summer.

Yahoo Panama - Pros and Cons
Near the end of 2006 Yahoo officially unveiled the new back end for Yahoo Marketing Solutions, widely referred to as the 'Panama' Update. Since then they have been slowly allowing the upgrading of accounts from the old into the new system. While not everyone has had a chance to have their accounts switched over, it is expected that all will be upgraded by the end of this quarter. (skip to "Yahoo Panama - Pros and Cons" by Scott Van Achte)

Publishing Your Prices - the Sequel
Are we so accustomed to the vastness of modern media that we've forgotten consumers are always a click or two away from a zillion and one alternatives to our humble offerings? Today's consumer is on high alert for answers, answers, answers. There is little reason to gamble away time trying to get those answers out of you the seller when better answers - easier to find answers - are so tantalizingly available. (skip to "Publishing Your Prices - the Sequel" by Karri Flatla)

Tired of Opting Out When You Never Opted In?
The big news of the past couple of days is that Yahoo now allows you to opt out of having Yahoo use the directory title and description in their general search results. As I was installing the new robots meta tag onto my home page I started thinking, "why am I opting out when I never opted in?"

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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.
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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.)

Isn't Content On An E-commerce Site Just Fluff?
Cre8asite Forums - "Is the point that somebody wants to find information that I have on my site, and just maybe they'll also need to buy a gift, too? Or it's purely for the search engines? Or both? I guess I need to understand why content, beyond product descriptions, is necessary to make my site successful."

The Problem(s) With Social Media Traffic
Cre8asite Forums - "...keep in mind that Social Media isn't all about traffic either. It's about being 'Social', and getting your brand/product/service out there and talking about it. That could probably be the bigger win, than all those clicks coming over from digg."

Google Competition
Small Business Ideas Forum - "...I don't think you could convince anyone 20% is a bad thing..... seems we also agree something is amiss still after their explanation (usually those are just canned responses). I wonder what your CTR for the ad is. Based on my own experiences, the CTR usually is the variable impacting a minimum bid being raised. By the way, I'm curious, do you use Google's conversion tracking where they would even know your conversion rate?"

What To Look At When Buying Links, PR or Alexa Rating
High Rankings Forum - "...I was wondering how I should choose the text links. By the highest Alexa rating, PR, if it's on the first page, # pages it will appear on. Remember all of them are related to my site. If anyone could help me out that would be great."

NOODP and NOYDIR, Can they go together?
High Rankings Forum - "Now that Yahoo is allowing us to block the use of their directory descriptions in the SERPs with no "NOYDIR" meta tag, I'm wondering if it's considered proper syntax to have a single robots meta tag with multiple content attributes, or if we're better off keeping them separate."

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Recent Conversations In Our Small Business Forum
(If you like our search engine news, you'll love our small business news.)

Blogs Suspended On Wordpress.com
"I don't understand this at all. I write informative articles about dogs and dog products. I thought I was allowed to link to my web site and now I find out I'm not. I need help on this. What are my options. Are there any other sites like WordPress that will allow links and keywords?"

Squidoo Groups
"It's all about what's right for your business. If it's something you have the time for, and can properly promote your business through it, it's probably a nice option."

Article Submission – Receiving Articles?
"I'm wondering if anyone has any good resources or articles about receiving articles to display on your site. I'll be opening a business directory soon which will include business listings but it will also include business related articles. I'm just wondering if anyone has information on rules of etiquette, stand practice for receiving articles, archiving, time management on editing, where to edit or not, etc, etc."

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If you don't, I'll give you 100% of your money back with no questions asked.

"I'm finally reading your book, and it is amazing. You have done a marvelous job of explaining SEM in general, SEO, keyword research, copywriting, linking -- damn, you're good."

Claudia Bruemmer - Former Managing Editor, ClickZ



Yes, it's that good. Get your copy today.

 

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