Search Engine Guide
Search Engine Marketing News

Week of 2008-06-26

Hi Everyone,

With one third of the seats taken for our Small Business Marketing Unleashed Conference you'll want to register soon to guarantee your spot.

With that in mind, a question arose about doing a partial payment now to hold a seat. Previously this wasn't an option because keeping the registration process simple has been a priority.

At the same time we know summer is a slow time of year for some of our subscribers and we want to make sure they have an opportunity to attend.

So we've set up a payment code that will allow you to break the registration fee into 2 payments of $375. One payment now and the second payment by August 10th, 2008.

This is a limited offer so the code is only valid for the first 15 readers to use it. The code is: first15

One last thing, you can now just type in sbmu.com to go to our conference site. Yay, a short URL!

Have a great week!

Rachel Phillips


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From Our Writers
Jennifer Laycock Stoney de Geyter Diane Aull Debra Mastaler Paul Jahn Manoj Jasra David Wallace Sage Lewis Mack Collier Karri Flatla Jackie Baker Ross Dunn Scott Allen Diana Adams

Featuring: Jennifer Laycock, Stoney deGeyter, Diane Aull, Debra Mastaler, Paul Jahn, Manoj Jasra, David Wallace, Sage Lewis, Mack Collier, Karri Flatla, Jackie Baker, Ross Dunn, Scott Allen and Diana Adams.

How to Fix the Bloated Code that is Jacking Up Your SEO

by Stoney deGeyter

There are a lot of little things that can junk up your code, but, for the most part, the search engines don't really care. It doesn't matter to them if your HTML validates or if you keep your code "clean" or not. When it comes to analyzing your pages for search engine rankings, none of that really matters a whole lot. But when it does matter, it matters a whole lot.

My Essential Plug-Ins for WordPress Blogs

by David Wallace

While plug-ins for the WordPress blogging platform are in abundant supply, I try not to depend on too many of them due to the fact that I don't want to have to worry about them breaking every time a new version of WordPress is released. That being said, there are four plug-ins as well as one adjustment (or hack) to the post template itself that I feel are essential in order to have a great WordPress experience.  ...

How to Move to a New Domain With Minimal Ranking Loss and Downtime

by Stoney deGeyter

Moving your site to a new domain is remarkably similar to moving to a new physical address. In some cases it's much easier, you don't have to pack up, or load or unload a U-Haul truck, but there are other considerations that you have to take into account to make sure your visitors continue to find you after an online move. One of the primary areas of concern is making sure the search engines not only continue to deliver traffic to your new location, but you don't lose all your search engine rankings in the process.

Why is Social Media So Hard For Businesses?

by Mack Collier

More businesses than ever are exploring the possibility of using social media tools and sites to help grow their business. But many of these efforts aren't very effective, and I think that is due to many businesses simply misunderstanding what social media is, and why it's so important.

Directory Links = Paid Links. Or do they?

by Stoney deGeyter

One of the areas of confusion that many have regarding paid links is knowing when a paid link is really a paid link, and when is a paid link penalized. in their attempt to eliminate all forms of paid links from affecting their natural algorithmic search results Google has left one giant loophole in the paid link witch hunt: paid directory links.

Projecting Keyword Demand for Free

by Mike Moran

Is search marketing old enough to have a good old days? If it is, then I remember them. Ah, the days when you could fire up the Overture keyword tool to see how many searches were done in the U.S. on Yahoo! for a particular keyword. Add a little math, and you could estimate the number of searches done across all U.S. search engines in a month. But then Yahoo! crippled that free tool, and we've been left with no way to project keyword demand, until now....

Five Ways Your Small Business Can Use Online Video

by Mack Collier

Thanks to the lowering cost of technology, it's now possible for any small business owner to create and share videos with current and potential customers online, for less than $200. This also gives small business owners several exciting new options for growing their businesses.

Website Architecture Questions Answered, Part VII

by Stoney deGeyter

I'm continuing to work my way through questions submitted during a webinar I gave on Website Architecture. You can check out Parts one, two, three, four, five and six. This post covers questions on URLs, breadcrumb navigation, CMS, Database driven sites, 301 and 302 redirects, navigation, heading tags, broken links and HTML theft.

Your Website Doesn't Need Content

by Diane Aull

Well, actually, it's just boring, low-value content your site doesn't need. Fresh and unique content is always a good thing. Here are a few tips for creating the kind of content every website can benefit from....

Site Clinic: Blogging Done Right

by Jackie Baker

This week's site clinic focuses on a relatively young blog, BeFitAndStrong.com. Blog owner Curtis Penner is doing many things very well, and I'd like to take some time to point those out as well as suggest a few improvements he can make to better reach his goals. As much as we learn from our own (and other people's) mistakes, we can also learn a lot when we see something done well....

Why LinkedIn is the One Social Network I Couldn't Work Without

by Jennifer Laycock

When I teach Social Media classes to small businesses, I can always count on someone in the audience to ask a question that goes a little something like this: "I've got limited time to invest in social media, but there seem to be a million sites out there. How do I know which one is worth my time? If I only have time for one, which one should it be?" Well I generally try to weasel out of that question by telling them I'd use both LinkedIn AND Twitter, the truth is if I had to pick just one, LinkedIn would win, hands down. Let me tell you why.

How to Create Effective Site Navigation that Leads Visitors to Your Most Important Content

by Stoney deGeyter

Site navigation can come in many different flavors. There isn't just ONE way to do it correctly. If there were then every site would have navigation that looked exactly the same. So while navigation can vary greatly between sites and industries, there are certain navigational elements that should be implemented to ensure solid usability and effective website architecture.

Measure Form Interactions with ClickTale

by Manoj Jasra

ClickTale has just launched a new analytics product called Form Analytics. Form Analytics reveals how visitors interact with online forms and provides recommendations that can increase form completion rates and shopping cart conversions....

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Video Cast

Sage Lewis

Coming Out and Coming Clean

by Sage Lewis

Whether you're Barack Obama or the Associated Press, this week has been about cleaning out the proverbial skeletons in the closet. Obama launched a website called Fight the Smears (.com) in which he debunks and clarifies false rumors about himself and his family. The Associated Press is bringing legal action against bloggers for using too much of the AP's content in their blogs. Also, ClevelandSEO.com points to The Karcher Group as a good case study for domain name changes; The Karcher Group has been blogging in detail the trials and tribulations associated with transferring their domain name to TKG.com....

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Readers Respond

In response to... Why LinkedIn is the One Social Network I Couldn't Work Without

Great article! LinkedIn IS a powerful tool and I do not know how I lived and worked without it for the past couple years. It has helped me network with new and old colleagues and even assisted me with finding new customers for Salesconx (the website I work for). I even made my network double in one day thanks to joining an open networking group! Now I'm connected to thousands of amazing people and hope to connect to thousands more in the coming months.

Gina
Salesconx
The Marketplace for Sales Professionals



I second that. In addition to being the modern day resume and Rolodex; the Q&A section is a great way to search for people seeking answers to business problems that you may have some expertise in.

LinkedIn has added a 'status' area where you can post an update to what you're doing that will list in the Network Updates that is listed when you log in.

Marshall England



Jen I totally agree. LinkedIn is a not only a recruiters playground, it is the "professional" Facebook. I've made many contacts and have had some great answers to questions
I've asked. I also read other people's questions as well.

Advanced search is awesome and even if you are not connected to the person you find, you may have a connection otherwise like attended the same school or belong to the same association.

A great tool that shouldn't be missed by small or large businesses alike. Hey, let's hook up on LinkedIn!

David Temple
SEM Scholar
SEO SEM Training & Certification Blog



There are now thousands of social networks that cater to a whole variety of subjects. These smaller, focused sites allow users to connect with like-minded people and give advertisers targeted demographics. Niche social networks are also good for marketers who have a product or service they want to promote that relates to a particular interest. A good place to find such sites is this search engine for social networks

Simo



In response to... My Essential Plug-Ins for WordPress Blogs

I'd add Akismet, WordPress.com Stats, Wordpress Database Backup, Feed Footer, and Google XML Sitemaps.

It can never be mentioned enough how critical it is to back up. It's amazing how many people never back up their blog, which when blogging for business, means you could LOSE YOUR BUSINESS to some type of disaster. OUCH!

Steve Belt
Phoenix Area Real Estate Blog
Real Estate information for Phoenix, Scottsdale, and nearby Arizona cities



In response to... Website Architecture Questions Answered, Part VII

Is there a specific limit as to how many variables a dynamic URL can have before Google refuses to index the page? I've heard differing opinions on the use of, say, "content.html" vs. "content.jsp?UID=34323". You no doubt have heard of vBSEO, which makes forum pages more SE-friendly by renaming URLs to static-looking .html pages. I know of a few cases where this had great success, but does that mean we should rename all pages with a URL variable in order to maximize rankings?

I wish Google's Webmaster Guidelines would be more specific :)

cochlea



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Recent Conversations In Our Small Business Forum

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Small Business Forum Update For June 16, 2008

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