Seo-mama’s Blog


Ways To Find “Freebies” To Add To Your eBook and Ideas for Viral Marketing

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 29, 2009

 

If you shop online regularly I’m sure you are already familiar with the marketing techniques many webmasters use by offering you FREE bonuses, gifts and other incentives in an effort to encourage you to make a purchase from them.

That is all well and good.

However, did you know that (depending on what rights you are granted with the freebies); you can use those “Freebies” to your advantage to add value to your eBooks and other products?

Here are just a few ways that you can find Freebies and things that you could do:

Do a Google search on the internet to find free gifts that are related to your product.

Search under a few keywords such freebies, free reports, free eBooks, free software, free gifts, etc.

Look for products that compliment your product that you can give away as a free gift in your eBook.

By doing that you will make your product more appealing to your readers and you will increase your chances of making a sell.

Look for eBooks on the same topic of your eBook that are published by established expert publishers or by other publishers who have a different take on the same topic.

You can accomplish this by placing your keywords in every chapter of your eBook and researching those keywords in your favorite search engine(s).

Once you have found the free eBook that you are looking for add a link to it in every chapter of your eBook.

Don’t be afraid to search, as many sites have freebies and they want you to distribute them.

Here are a few ideas to help you start your viral marketing campaign:

1. Purchase the branding rights to a viral Book and allow people to give away your free eBook to their subscribers. When their visitors give away the eBook it will take on an exponential effect and spread like wildfire all over the internet.

2. If possible, set up a forum or bulletin board and allow visitors to use your forum or bulletin board for their website. You can include your banner at the top of the forum or discussion board.

3. Write articles pertaining to your niche and allow others to reprint them on their website, in their newsletters, ezines, eBooks or magazines. Always include your resource box at the bottom of each article along with the option for the article to be reprinted.

4. Search the internet to find products with branding rights that allows you to add your name, website information, and contact information to the product and those that allow you to pass it along to others “free of charge.”

5. If you are creative you can design your own graphics, software, templates, fonts, etc., include your own ads on them and include a link directly back to your website.

To preserve the integrity of your designs, make sure that visitors to your website agree to keep any copyrighted information that you provide in tact and include in the copyright notice a link back to your website.

Once they have agreed to your terms and conditions you can then allow them to give away your templates, graphics, fonts, software, etc.

6. In exchange for allowing your website visitors to advertise in an eBook that you have written, make sure they agree to give away your eBook to their ezine subscribers or to their website visitors.

Always over-deliver and give your readers the very best offer possible. They will appreciate you for it.

www.seo-mama.com
www.mebreaks.com
www.wvss.net
www.dubainightplanner.com

Advertisements

What is Niche Marketing? What is SEO?

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 29, 2009

Niche marketing with SEO isn’t quite self explanatory – so here’s a simple overview. A niche is simply a product category that people are looking for and that doesn’t have overwhelming competition on the supply side of the demand/supply equation.

The ideal niche is one that has great demand and little or no supply available. Such niches are rare. You could spend a lifetime looking for one and never find it – so don’t count on this if you are planning to do niche marketing.

Fortunately, niche marketing with SEO doesn’t require that one’s niche be ideal to be good from our perspective – just good enough. Most people who set up marketing websites don’t research the competition very thoroughly while picking the market in which they are going to operate. This is a good thing for those of us in the know about online market research.

By picking a niche with relatively high demand and low supply, and by “optimizing” our website to attract the notice of the search engines, we can compete successfully in the marketplace.

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. It consists of two parts: on-page optimization and off-page optimization. On-page optimization is mostly a matter of picking a keyword for your page that matches the informational theme of the page. A web page with the theme “niche marketing” would have “niche marketing” in the keywords meta-tag in the Page Source” view of your browser.

Off-page optimization is effected by the recognition accorded your web page by other webmasters – primarily expressed as links from their websites to yours. Search engines are able to track both optimization factors – and they give more weight to the latter than to the former.

A page will have matured when other websites, known to be authorities on niche marketing, bear links pointing to the page. SEO is a big subject and you will see it referred to repeatedly throughout many websites concerned with niche marketing. The first question that should occur to you at this point is – What Am I Going to Sell?

Rather than pick a product that is familiar to you – or one that you can create yourself – both of which are very tempting choices – I strongly suggest that you decide at the outset to pick one that you know people want. In other words do the market research first – find out what people are actually looking for and that can be sold profitably – and then decide what to sell.

If your research leads you to a subject that is not the most familiar, so be it. Learn the subject and then sell it. It is likely that you will find a niche in an area with which you already have some familiarity, because you are likely to start with something familiar as you begin doing the research. It is best if this is so, because you can write most capably about a subject about which you care passionately.

What Do I need to Know to Do Niche Marketing with SEO?

In simplest terms you need to know:

  • How to set up a website properly
  • How to select the search engine keywords that will bring traffic to your website
  • How to structure your website to be ranked highly by the search engines – so it appears on the first page of “results” that a search engine displays when a visitor searches for your keywords,

* How to “monetize” your web traffic to create multiple streams of income, and

* How to lead your sites visitors to a decision to buy what you are selling – without using a heavy-handed sales pitch. This is called “pre-selling”.

The first of these questions is answered very thoroughly by sources that I will reference in subsequent articles. It is a big subject – beyond the scope of this article.

The choice of keywords has also been covered by many writers on the subject. Each has his own angle on doing the research, and some make useful tools available to you either free or at modest cost.

How To “Monetize” Your Website

To monetize your website is simply to connect your site’s readers with an opportunity to buy something in such a way that you make money in the process. There are a number of good choices in this regard, and you can use more than one of them.

For starters, you can directly sell something via your website using your own merchant account or PayPal account. Your product might be a tangible item that you are prepared to ship or drop-ship to your customer – or it might be an e-book, a piece of software, or an information product that you will deliver immediately as an electronic download.

Then again, you might sell a product produced by a company of whom you are an affiliate. There are many good affiliate programs available. In this case you simply include on your website a link that takes the reader to a website provided by the product supplier. The link identifies you to the supplier, so if the reader becomes a customer, you get a commission on the sale. Such commissions can run as high as 75% and be very profitable to you.

And/or you might contract with a product or service provider to be paid a fixed fee for each referral that you send their way via your website.

And/or you might sell advertising space on your website, either via Google’s Adsense program, which will pay you on a per-click basis, or through one of several other programs. Some of these pay you on a weekly or monthly basis and can be more lucrative than Adsense ads.

A Note On Monetizing

One of the most common mistakes that beginners make when setting up a commercial website is to monetize the site too soon. Until the site contains enough useful content, its readers should not be expected to trust its author enough to buy anything on the site. Why should they? The traffic to the site will tell you when that trust has been established – then you will have “earned” the right to monetize it.

If you monetize too soon, before you have at least thirty highly informative pages and twenty unique visitors per day, then you run the risk that both search engines and human visitors will just see the site as a sales pitch – and accord it little value or rank.

The Value Of “Pre-Selling”

As I said earlier, most Internet surfers are not looking for advertising when they use the search engines. They are looking for useful information – authoritative information that informs them about the subject of interest to them. When you provide such information, you gain a level of credibility in your readers’ eyes that you can never achieve by presenting them with a sales pitch.

Niche marketing is all about credibility. As your readers recognize the value of the information content that you provide, they become more open to the idea of buying something from you. As this occurs, the likelihood that they will buy from you rises, the percentage of visitors who are “converted” into customers rises accordingly – and the ease with which you make money online soars.

If you are serious about making money with niche marketing, the next thing you need to study is the choices you will need to address in deciding how you will go about doing so.

www.seo-mama.com

The 10 Best Ways To Promote Your Website

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 29, 2009

To make money on the internet you need an effective marketing plan. So here are the best marketing tips that you must follow to make your website a powerful magnet for traffic and sales.

Banner Advertising

Although many marketers already know about pay-per-click advertising, very few are purchasing guaranteed banner click-thru’s that are available on hundred’s of sites. Look for sites that cater to your target market and look for, or ask for, their advertising rates. Slowly but surely most of the sites that sold banner impressions are starting to offer performance advertising in the form of pay-per-click.

Write articles

Writing Articles is an excellent way to promote your website and best of all you can get recognize as an internet business expert. You can submit your article to ezine or article directory.

Exchange links

Exchanging links is one of the best method for getting web site traffic and ranking higher. When you start a site you should exchange many as possable links with sites that are RELATED to YOUR site. Robots are eager to find new links and fresh information.

Mailing List

Having a mailing list can bring wonders to a web site, not only will it help bring old visitors back , but they will send the newsletter to their friends (If they like it).This is like gold for you. The only real purpose for a consumer website is to capture leads and to sell products. Send out a monthly e-zine that offers FREE valuable information and mentions similar products they may be interested in. Search Engine Optimization It is no secret that search engines are the number one traffic generating method for driving visitors to web sites. Search engines are very useful in helping people find the relevant information they seek on the Internet. The major search engines develop and maintain their own gigantic database of web sites that can be searched by a user typing in a keyword or keyword phrase in the search box.

Search engine optimization

(SEO) is the process of studying the search engines in an effort to determine how to get your web site to rank high on user searches. Depending on the statistical information reviewed, search engines account for over 80% of the visitor traffic to web sites.

Free online forum

One forum can be about “Online Business”. Another forum can be about ” Joint Ventures”. When people join those forums, make sure that they need to come to your site first and log in from there, if they want to log on and post on the forum.

Market Statistic

You can use features on your website such as visitor polls, online surveys and your website statistics to find out what your customers like more and how they feel about certain aspects of your business to determine how you can improve your product and the way you do business.

FREE Advertising

There is alot of FREE Advertising on the Internet. There is Classified Ads. FREE For All Pages (FFA), Ezine, Article Submission and Newsgroup of course and many more.

Blogging

Blogs are a relatively new and popular way to publish content on the Internet. They allow the blogger to publish content; very quickly AND get feedback from the people that read it. Because they are new and content is created regularly, search engines love indexing them – and if search engines love them, you should too.

Real Syndicated Content

RSS marketing is a tool used by many on the Internet to deliver articles, advertisements, emails, customer support responses, ezines to clients and potential clients.

www.seo-mama.com

Avoid Broken Links: 5 Quick and Easy Tricks To Ensure Your Resource Box Links Work!

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 29, 2009

Article Marketing is a great way to build links to your site, resulting in long term targeted traffic and an increase in your search engine rankings.

How does that work?

With every article you submit you will also include an ‘author resource box’ or ‘author bio’ that includes some basic biographical information and also a link back to your website.

That resource box will sit below your article, and if a reader likes your article they will read your resource box and then (hopefully!) click the link that leads back to your website.

Also, every time your article is republished, you gain an incoming link to your site which can affect your website’s search engine ranking. With an increase in links, your website can start ranking higher when people do searches for your keyword terms.

So, a major key to success with article marketing is that link in the resource box that leads back to your website.

You can imagine how frustrating it must be to go through the effort of writing an article and submitting it, only to later realize that you made a mistake when entering your website URL into the author bio area.

If you’ve ever made that mistake, you’re familiar with that “Argh–I can’t believe I did that!” feeling, and I bet you’ll go to any lengths to be sure that it doesn’t happen again.

How can you be sure that your links work?

Are there any quick and easy tricks to make absolutely certain that the links in your resource box lead back to your website like they’re supposed to?

Thankfully, yes!

There are several recurring reasons why links break, and if you’ll follow these 5 tricks, you will submit an article with a resource box that has working links!

1) Be sure that your URL is fully qualified and has ‘http://’ at the start of it.

Now, I know that we’re all used to just typing in www. and then our website name, but when you’re entering a link into your author bio box, be sure that the link is a fully qualified URL. For example,http://www.examplewebsite.com

That http part at the beginning of the website address needs to be there. If you’re nervous about entering your URL correctly, you may try just bringing your website up on your computer, and then copying and pasting the URL from the address bar of your browser. Then, you don’t have to worry about making a typing mistake.

2) Don’t try to italicize or bold your website address.

If you know basic HTML then you know how to do bold and italics, but I caution you–do not try to put bold or italics into your URL. The HTML can mess up the formatting of the link and make it not work, and I know you don’t want to risk that happening!

Just keep things simple–enter your fully qualified URL and don’t worry about making it fancy with bold or italics or underline.

3) Put your URL on a new line.

Sometimes when a link is at the end of a line it can get artificially cut off, which results in a broken link. To safeguard against this, try entering your URL on a new line rather than at the end of a line.

Now, of course to make this look right, you need to make your URL be the last word in your resource box.

4) Don’t put punctuation after your URL.

Even if your URL is at the end of a sentence, you don’t need to put a period behind it. Putting any type of punctuation after your website address can mess up the formatting and break the link.

5) Preview your article and test your links.

Now, this is a foolproof way to be sure that your links will work–before submitting your article, preview it and click the links in your resource box.

When clicking your links, do they take you to your website?

If so, great! Then you know your links work, and you can put your mind at ease.

If not, then you can go back into the ‘edit’ page of your article and make your corrections. Maybe you typed your URL incorrectly, or maybe you made one of the mistakes listed above.

At any rate, isn’t it great to figure out that your links don’t work when you still have the opportunity to correct things? Absolutely!

After you write your article and get it all entered into the submission page, just take an extra few seconds to be sure that your links are formatted correctly and working–you’ll be happy you did!

www.seo-mama.com

SEO Web Design, Harnessing the Power of Alt Text and Images

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 29, 2009

Today I would like to share an invaluable SEO web design technique to refine the focus of your pages using images and alt attributes for create relevance for SEO.

SEO, Images and Alt Text

Sculpting the focus of your pages translates into coherence and relevance for search engines. For example, if you have repetitive elements on a page, such as a legal footer (that is 200 words of legalese), a tag line in your title tags, overpowering navigation (which breaks down as a cascading tree menu), then all of these things are impacting the word count, text to link ratio and either increasing or diffusing the relevance of each page.

With examples such as this, you may consider using an image as an alternative (make a high res image with that text instead and use that instead of text) to lower the co-occurrence or non specific keywords and replace the nebulous shingles of text.

If in doubt, then look at your pages Google cache in text only view by clicking on a search result (cache link then selecting text only) link to see how spiders really see your pages with all of the style sheet information removed.

Frequently when conducting an on page website review and analysis we see multiple pages in a website that for lack of better terms are so similar to the market focus of multiple pages (which essentially means, since they are so alike, nothing distinguishes it from others).

As a result, lackluster performance impacts the relevance score of the page by diffusing the keyword focus and jumbling the phrases, modifiers and keywords in an attempt to make sense of what that page is really about.

Add to the fact that the anchor text is typically wide open with no real regard for continuity using off topic keywords for links (click here, contact us, etc), linking from multiple methods from one page to another (from the home button or link, from anchor text in the body and say for example an image as well) confuses the order of importance.

The remedy for this SEO web design dilemma is:

1) Add additional text on the topic – you can either add 100-200 additional unique words to a page or add 2-3 more supporting pages and internally link them to the target page to increase relevance for specific keywords.

The fastest way to get in the top 10 is to get a link from a website already ranking in the top 10 for a keyword. Similarly, in order to make your on SEO page factors prominent, linking from a page (all about Topic A) with a relevant link (about Topic A) to you preferred landing page within your site, transfers that ranking factor through the anchor text.

The more competitive the keyword, the more internal links you should use, using a variety of modifiers, reversing the order of the words if applicable or related synonyms as links to the target page (you wish to elevate).

2) Use images as links when adding text links is not applicable. Images can be tactfully integrated into a page and the alt attribute harnessed to link pages with relevant keywords.

If you still have images on your page lacking alt text (spiders cannot interpret images so you need to tell them what the image is). For example, if you have an arrow leading to a free quote page, the arrow could say get a free quote as the alt attribute. If it is a link, then the text in the alt attribute counts as a viable link and that value gets transferred to the target page.

So, if you cannot change the text on the page (due to upper management bureaucracy , you don’t want to throw off the flow of the text, or whatever reason) you can use images to sculpt relevance, make a visual suggestion or act as internal links.

As a result, that page is infused with internal link relevance and then combined with the fact that the weeds have been removed or pruned (noisy words minimized while relevant keyword dialed in) your pages focal point is conveyed to search engines.

Effective Ways to Optimize Security in IT

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 29, 2009

By Eddie Bannister in Security

Chances are your computer network or PC has been attacked at some point or another. Perhaps a worm caused your system to slow down severely, a virus erased your entire hard drive, or, malware plagued your registry and browser, leaving you helpless and frustrated. What you probably learned from these attacks was how or where to find a quick-fix while your overall security remained unchanged. What you may not know is that there are a few fundamental practices in relation to the hardware, software and people that can help to improve or optimize the safety level of your computer network and personal system. These practices or ways are sound, easy to implement and highly effective.

On the Hardware/Software Side

While they may appear relatively basic at the onset, some practical measures should be taken to not just establish and maintain but also to increase ongoing security to computer hardware and software. Failure to adhere to these measures or ways of implementing security can potentially lead to disaster. Of course, you can further add to or enhance these measures depending on your particular situation–such as budget restraints, time-frame, etc.

Specifically, you will want to:

  • Upgrade or replace. Older hardware can malfunction and become unstable; older software can have security holes and vulnerabilities or could fail to properly integrate with newer technologies.
  • Patch up and harden. Whether it’s a domain controller or your home PC, install anti-virus software, configure a firewall, update the OS using service packs and remove unnecessary services.
  • Limit access. Keep the system away from prying eyes and unauthorized users. Implement strong passwords; use encryption. Locks and biometrics are strongly recommended, too.
  • Monitor regularly. Make a habit of watching network activity and reading system logs to find inconsistencies and unusual traffic patterns.
  • Maintain good backups. Backup often and verify your backups always. Keep one or more copies off-site, if possible.

On the People Side

When it comes to security, people usually are the weakest link in the chain. They can be lazy, indifferent, uninformed or represent some other security liability. Because you, too, may possibly exhibit such characteristics and behaviors yourself, here are ways to address these people problems and successfully increase and ensure IT security. For example, you should:

  • Establish controls. Rules and policies can help to specify what is or isn’t acceptable use. Enforce them. Be prompt at acting on the slightest deviation.
  • Train and educate. You and your staff can never be too knowledgeable about the newest technologies or the latest types of attacks–worms, viruses, Trojans, malware and others. Be prepared to learn and learn to be prepared.
  • Be safety aware. Don’t expose yourself or your systems to potential attacks by linking to questionable websites. And, opening an email attachment from an unknown source could quench much more than sheer curiosity.
  • Go “long” on commitment. Engage people by assigning them (or yourself) duties and responsibilities with realistic goals and rewards. Foster loyalty and support alongside accountability for non-performance.

Experiencing a malicious attack is sometimes the result of weak or ineffective security practices. And, while finding quick solutions to the attack may be reactionary and expected, it is not necessarily the only or best course of action in securing PCs and networks. There are far more sensible and fundamental ways to implement and address security in relation to the hardware, software and people involved in day to day operations. It is, in fact, by applying those ways and practices that you can effectively and successfully improve upon and optimize security in IT.

www.seo-mama.com

Dramatically Increase Dynamic Page SEO With Descriptive URLs

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 27, 2009

Dynamic pages tend to have URLs that read horribly, such as:

“mysite.com/thread.php?id=3951&page=2”

The URL says absolutely nothing about what the page is, other than that it’s probably a thread. If yours look like that, you’re missing out on a valuable way for gaining extra search engine optimization.

Wouldn’t a URL like:

“mysite.com/thread/3951-Bubblewrap-Is-Delicious-2.html” 

look a lot better? First, you know just from reading the URL exactly what the page is about: If you want to find out about how delicious bubble wrap is, that’s a page you want to look at. Second, and more importantly, search engines give extra ranking to keywords present in the URL.

The technical parts of this guide will differ based on which scripting language you’re using. I’ll be using PHP, but there are similar ways to accomplish this with the other languages.

First, you should make the script run as a file without an extension, rather than a .php extension (or whichever extension your language uses). I added a ForceType statement to my .htaccess file, to make the thread file read as application/x-httpd-php, a PHP script.

At this point, your script would run properly as “mysite.com/thread?id=3951&page=2”. This is already better, because it doesn’t give away which scripting language you use. It doesn’t accomplish anything in terms of SEO though.

Next, you should to break up the arguments that are passed to our script with the “explode” function, like so:

$args = explode(“/”,$_SERVER[‘PHP_SELF’]);

If you were to access “mysite.com/thread/3951/2”, $args would be an array with “3951” and “2”. You can use a second explode statement (or a strtok statement) to allow the two arguments to be separated by a hyphen, but do that later as the most important part is next.

Finally, convert the name of the document (be in the forum thread name or blog post name) into an argument, replacing spaces with dashes. You might notice some sites using underscores, but I’ve found that words separated by underscores are counted as a single word, instead of multiple words. If you leave them as spaces, though, they end up being turned into a garbled mess.

Add a bit of code at the top of the script that you’re optimizing to make sure that the URL matches the one you want it to be (so it redirects thread/4614-blah-1 to thread/4614-Styrofoam-Is-Good-Too-1), add .html to the end of the whole mess, and you’re done!

To prevent overuse of words that don’t actively contribute to SEO, you can use the string replace functions to strip words such as “I”, “The”, and “And” from the URL.

Many search engines won’t fully index your website if everything is behind standard argument lists, so by giving them URLs that look like proper filenames, you both ensure that all of your pages are indexed and increase your SEO relevancy. Making your URLs readable by humans is an added bonus, too.

www.seo-mama.com

4 Quick Ways To Build Quality One-Way Links

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 27, 2009

Obtaining one-way quality links is often cited as the “Holy Grail” of online success. Especially if you take the SEO route for getting high rankings for all your profitable keywords in the search engines. It’s no wonder then, achieving top spots for valuable and popular keywords should be the ultimate goal of any webmaster or online marketer.

How well you do in this “link quest” will largely determine the success or failure of your site or online business. Assuming of course, you’re going after free organic traffic from the search engines and not using Pay Per Click or other means of succeeding online.

Link building and achieving top placements in the search engines (especially Google) has been my main objective for over ten years of online marketing. Over the years, I have tried hundreds, if not thousands of link building methods in order to get those links. I would like to discuss briefly some of those methods and then explain in full detail my four favorite and most effective proven ways to get quality one-way links.

First, some general tips on how you should approach your link building from the get-go. You must realize the web is based on content; web surfers/users are looking for quality content. If you can supply valuable content that the surfers want, you will build your links naturally. People will see your content and want to link to it. This process is often referred to as link baiting – you make your content/offer so irresistible, they will not only want it but they will go out of their way to tell others about your fantastic content.

Be careful not to link to “spammy” link farms and it’s probably a good idea to always check the Gooogle PageRank PR of any site or page you link to on the web. Many cautious webmasters/marketers won’t link to anything less than a PR3 page but use your own judgment here.

There are numerous ways of getting quality links:

. place your links in directories – free and paid

. join online forums and place your links

. do recommendations and testimonials

. viral videos with your embedded links

. join social media sites like MySpace, Facebook, etc.

. use hub traffic sites like Squidoo and Hubpages

. use Google sites like Google News, Google Docs, Google Knol

. use Wikipedia to build links

. use Yahoo Answers and those types of sites

. use eBay and sites like Craigslist

. use viral ebooks and software programs

Now, I have used all of the above link building methods and many more over the years but I would like to explain to you my most effective link building techniques – these are the proven methods that have worked for me. No doubt you may have heard of many of these link building methods before… but here goes:

Article Marketing

This is still one of the most effective ways to build good one-way links to your site. I know this is “old school” but it still works. At least for now, there are rumors Google is cracking down on article links but for now links in your article resource boxes are still very effective.

From my own experience, article marketing is my most effective technique at building links. My sites and my online marketing were going nowhere until I started writing articles. Now I do aggressive article marketing using all the major online article directories…

The Top 5 I Use Are: Ezinearticles, Goarticles, Isnare, Ideamarketers, and Buzzle.

Now just look at my stats from ezinearticles alone and you will know why I use them.

Account Statistics

Articles Views: 421,327

Profile Views: 2,573

Articles Published: 4,787

URL Clicks: 49,480

Emailed: 115

Live Articles: 203

I have roughly 200 articles which have been viewed over 400,000 times which has sent around 50,000 visitors to my sites. Plus, I have around 5,000 places where my articles are published. And this is only for one online article directory – I have my articles in hundreds of them.

Whether you’re just a webmaster or into online marketing you must realize all this stuff is a “numbers” game. The more content you have out there, the more links you have on the web – the more traffic and visitors you get coming to your site. It’s not rocket science, it’s simple math. The more links you have, the higher probability someone will click them and come to your site.

The same goes for high rankings in the search engines, the more good quality links you have, the higher your rankings. Article marketing will give you highly targeted keyword links to your web pages. I also use SubmitYourArticle which will automatically submit my articles for me to many different article directories. I use this service to save time but you can hand-submit your own articles.

One last point about article marketing – you’re not just using articles to build links, you’re also using articles to “pre-sell” yourself, your site and/or your product. It’s a very effective way of funneling interested visitors/buyers to your site. Many of my sales are already made before visitors reach my site.

AddThis Bookmark

Now I am not really into the “social media” sites but that has not stopped me from using them to my advantage. And it would be a BIG mistake not to use these social media sites for your own link building.

Sites like MySpace, FaceBook, YouTube, Twitter, Digg, Linkedin… and thousands of others are very important for link building. They are becoming even more important as Google moves away from articles and focuses on the “real interactions” taking place on these sites.

Couple of years ago, I added the free AddThis Bookmark to all my sites. This is a simple code which lets your visitors bookmark your site or content in any or all of the major social media sites.

What’s actually happens is that your visitors are building your links for you. I have gotten hundreds of links from these sites just by placing this simple bookmark on my sites. Truth be told, I nearly laughed at this idea at first – sure visitors to my sites would automatically bookmark and build links for me? No way that would happen?

Wrong again!

This really works, so if you want this simple way of building links just use the Addthis.com bookmark to your site or pages.

Google Alerts Link Building

This method of building good quality one-way links does take a little more work but it is extremely effective, especially for getting high rankings in Google.

Here’s how it works:

You sign-up for Google Alerts for your major keywords that you’re promoting. Google will send you email alerts whenever a new page/site/link is created containing your keywords. You then go to those newly created pages to make a comment and add your link.

Many of these new pages will be on blogs so you can easily add your comment and link. The trick is to add valuable comments/content which the site moderator will approve because it adds to his/her site’s value. Many will also approve your link because your link is related to their site and this is just good SEO practice.

The key here is to put yourself and your site in the whole discussion of related blogs, sites and forums relevant to your content. You want your site in the whole mix of things so that relevant links will flow naturally from the discussion. Now all your links won’t be accepted but you can easily add 2 or 3 links each day with very little time spent on this. Great way to build links, hope you can give it a try.

Press Releases

I am just starting this method of link building, but what I have seen so far tells me this is a very effective way to build links. It’s not cheap, I use PRWeb and I believe it’s $200 for a release. You can get a cheaper price at around $80 but you don’t get the full benefits at this lower price.

Press releases are very effective because you can embed your links with your “anchor text” into the body of your press release. Other sites pick up your release and place it on their site with your keywords/links embedded. This seems more like natural link-building which the search engines loves, especially Google.

Again, depending on your own marketing budget, press releases can be a very effective way of building links. I have noticed sites going from a PR0 to PR4 in less than 6 months using this method and also getting top 5 rankings in Google in the process. Keep in mind, sites displaying press releases are usually already highly ranked in Google so some of their PR juice is passed on to your site.

www.seo-mama.com

Local Search Engine Optimization: Proven steps to reaching a larger market

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 27, 2009

In today’s economy, local search optimization is more important than ever for businesses that serve specific communities. Many still think of it as only a way to connect with customers in their community and that print advertising or even billboards is more effective. The reality is that for a florist, a realtor, a hotel, the visitors to their site are as likely to be someone not even in their state. In fact it’s hard to imagine any business that wouldn’t benefit from having a site that is optimized for local search given the increase in online activity.

Here are some steps you can take to reach customers not just in your area, but those outside it who are also likely prospects.

Put Your Contact Information On Your Site

One would think that this would be a cliché by now, but for whatever reason, many business owners only put their contact information on a single page. Instead, it should be on every page as you never know which page a visitor might discover first or which the search engines will rank for your services. 

If you serve multiple communities then develop a tag line at the bottom of each page that says “we sell widgets in Chicago, Aurora, and Wheaton.” If you’re a hotel by a historic landmark or popular attraction then add this as part of that description. Better yet, do a page about that landmark. Many tourists search for lodging close to the sites they want to visit.

Testimonials are an excellent way to instill confidence in potential customers. It’s also a great way to incorporate other locations into your site. Instead of just listing the name of the person giving a testimonial include their location. Also it goes without saying that your meta tags and descriptions should also incorporate your location. 

Submit to Directories

This is different than developing links to your site, although that is also important. Granted there are hundreds of directories out there that very few people other than those in SEO visit. When it comes to local search, however, there are a number of directories and specialized search engines that it’s crucial you’re listed in. Sites that receive a significant amount of traffic.

The biggest of these are directories such as http://www.superpages.com and http://www.local.com, http://www.yellowpages.com, and http://www.truelocal.com . These engines have millions of pages views a month, which means companies, definitely benefit from appearing in these search engines. They allow for free listings, although they will attempt to get you to upgrade to a paid listing.

Business directories often appear when you search for a business on the search engines, including http://www.merchantcircle.com and http://www.hotfrog.com . Again these have free listings. 

Another valuable resource is your local Chamber of Commerce. Many people moving to a community look at a chamber site to research businesses. 

Reflecting the importance of local search, Google, Yahoo, MSN, and Ask.com all have their own local listing services. One way to see if your business is listed on some of these sites is to go to http://getlisted.org . You simply type in your business name and your zip code and it shows if you are listed on Google Local, MSN Live, Yahoo Local, and Best of the Web’s new local service. If you’re not they have a link to these sites where you can submit your information.

Take control of your listings.

Just because your business information is listed on a local directory doesn’t mean it’s complete. It’s crucial that you take ownership of your listings. Google Local is the easiest and the most beneficial to review and revise. If you haven’t taken ownership of your listing, it might be little more than your business name, address, and telephone number. But their Local Business Center allows you to add a wealth of information, including your web site, photo, your categories, even a video. Yahoo and MSN also allow more information, although not to this extent. 

Another reason to review your information is to make sure your listing hasn’t been hijacked. Google claims it has corrected the problem that resulted in local listings being manipulated by others, but it also suggests owners continuously review their data. Both Google and MSN require verification of your relationship to the business either through a phone call, a postcard, or a letter. Only after you’ve verified your ownership, you’re listings will soon be updated. 

Finding the words prospects are using

The problem with many local search campaigns is the lack of data. Services such as Wordtracker and KeywordDiscovery are great if you serve a large market. But for most communities, the data will be so low it might not even turn up in their results. After all there may only be a hundred searches all total in a month for a florist in a town of 50,000. Divide this over all the search engines and the data seems particularly minuscule. Yet, for a florist in that community those 100 searches could be 100 missed opportunities to sell flowers. 

One solution is to run a Google Adwords campaign. Why Google? Obviously because its reach is so strong. Put in any phrase you think prospects might be using – florist, florist delivery, flowers for sale, etc. Then add your community to these phrases. Chances are you can put a bid of five cents for each phrase. Make sure, however, you only run the ad on the Search campaign and not the Content. After a few days you’ll begin to see how many impressions your ad is receiving. Run it at least a month and you’ll see how much interest there is in a specific phrase. 

In the end you may decide to continue with your AdWords campaign. And supplement it with Yahoo, MSN, or one of the previously mentioned local search directories. 

Another way to determine how visitors can find you on the web is through analytics. Google Analytics is one of the easiest to set up and more importantly, it’s free. Once set up properly you can begin to see how prospects are finding your site. A chiropractor may discover that people in their community are typing in their community’s name and specific symptoms, such as Springfield back pain or Springfield migraine treatment. See where you rank for these phrases on all the search engines and optimize your site if necessary. 

Use Pay Per Click Effectively

Running a pay per click is among the simplest things to do. You put in your information, including a credit card, pick out some keywords, write a small ad and start your campaign. Your ad begins almost immediately so you can see within a day how much interest there is in your keywords. Unfortunately in a few days you’ll find either your ads aren’t being clicked on. Or worse that they are being clicked on too much.

One third of all total online ad spending is for local ads. That being said, most local businesses set up their campaigns in manner that costs them money. For example, a realtor may think the keyword California real estate may be beneficial. It will certainly get them a lot of clicks. But if their market is Fresno, most of these clicks will be of little value. Instead establish a specific market when you set up your ad, say Fresno and all visitors within a hundred miles. 

With money so scarce today no business can afford to miss out on any opportunities for a sale. Local search engine optimization can be time consuming, particularly if you serve a large community. The dividends, however, could mean the difference from surviving this economic crisis or becoming another statistic.

www.seo-mama.com

How To Write For Search Engines

Posted in Uncategorized by Rajib Roy on April 27, 2009

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) writing, as a distinct style, was born in the Internet era and has matured before our very eyes in a relatively short span of time. Although it is evolving and maturing still, and will continuously do so, we can define some of the tried and tested steps of content optimization to help unique pages place at or near the top of search engine rankings.

Some experts go on to say that the goal of SEO is two-fold, with the first objective to put out the appropriate “bait” for search engine spiders and the second to serve up useful information to people who want and need it. Debates about priorities continue among SEO professionals, but it is never a good idea to devalue the human factors in any success formula. The singular goal, then, would be to develop, position and refine content in such a way as to satisfy all visitors to the page and/or site, both human and bot alike.

Rethinking search engine content terms

“Content is king,” goes the old saying – and not only is good content king, it is becoming more important with every passing day. But the term content is best taken in its broadest sense. Content is not simply the written copy placed in a document, assembled on a page, or aggregated at a site. It includes all this, of course, but content actually comprises titles, headings, tags, intra-site links and external links, as well.

All of these components need to work together and form an interconnected whole so that both search engines and humans find the right things, come to the right conclusions and, most importantly, make the right decisions. Good writing is always targeted to the audience, and you are writing for an audience of two readers, human and software. Remember these two components of the audience and find creative ways to reach both of them at the same time.

First things first

Titles are critically important – they are usually the first thing read by both real and virtual visitors. A title is the “primary topical identifier” and, as such, has an invaluable function – again, a dual-purpose one. It must contain keyword targets at the individual word level while stoking interest in potential readers at the phrase level. 

When a person performs a search, the title is both their first indication of your relevance to their needs and your first opportunity to compel them to click through. Search engines, more clinical and objective, give the title importance because they see it as an indicator of the page’s main idea.

Yet many pages on the Internet have no title at all, or share “Home” and “Untitled” with several million others. There is no excuse for this oversight. The ignorant cousin of these mistakes, making the company name by itself the title of every page, is just as bad. Keywords relevant to the page should be part of every page’s title.

Heading tags carry some importance too. Simply put, heading tags define the headings and subheadings of your article to both readers and spiders. By default they appear larger than normal text and are bolded. While not a magic ranking bullet, they are looked at with more importance than average text and are an opportunity to show spiders the themes of your content and what keywords you wish to rank for.

The H1 tag is the main heading of your article and carries the most importance, like a headline in a newspaper article. It should clearly convey the article’s topic to the reader and main keywords to the search engines. H2 tags are one level down in importance and structure. Use them to define subtopics under your main topic, and again use keywords where descriptive and useful. If you needed to break down your article to sub-sub-headings, you would use the H3 tags, and so forth. 

For both human and robotic readers, it is vital to keep page content focused. The “one topic per page” rule is an unwritten one, certainly, and it’s followed by most professional content developers. This has less to do with the intelligence of the readers (either kind) than it does with several other considerations. For one thing, search engine “crawlers” have algorithms that tend to work best on one concept at a time, and most humans work best this way, too. 

In addition, limiting the focus eases the task of placing keywords in the meta descriptions, page title, body copy, tags and links. Finally, dealing with more than one topic necessarily means using more verbiage, which dilutes the potency of a site-wide SEO program and may negatively impact ranking. Better to give these other topics their own content, strengthening your site’s overall informational authority.

SEO copywriting balance

Much ink has been spilled and many pixels propagated in discussing SEO techniques, analyzing strategies, teaching “web content” writing, and chasing changing algorithms. Mentioned less but encompassing everything is that SEO copywriting, like all SEO, is about balance. 

While articles such as this one can be helpful, it is important to understand that SEO will always evolve, change, adapt and improve. Study and implement tested techniques, but remain flexible and nimble. Writing for search engines and people at the same time is tricky and challenging at best, and can be frustrating and time-consuming, too. Approach the challenges in a businesslike fashion.

SEO content writing at its best balances art with science, blending the craft of engaging the reader with the dispassionate analysis of keywords on a page. Follow best practices, but fill each article to the brim with information useful to your demographic.

In simultaneously targeting a subject, an audience, and an algorithm, a great deal of creativity must take place to get effective SEO results. And, of course, it all has to happen in an environment that encourages short attention spans and constantly tries to lure people elsewhere. It is a major challenge to craft article titles and copy so compelling as to make people stop and read – or, better yet, stop and then click where you want them to.

Basics, opportunities, and consistency

The basic approach to writing for such a dynamic, ever-changing environment is to get to the point quickly. The “USA Today” news style – which relies on short headlines, descriptive sub-headlines and a few concise paragraphs – is perhaps the best analogy for good SEO writing. The important points (keywords) should appear early and often, and within a short period of time the human readers should know what they are supposed to do, while the search engines should be able to tell what the page is about from a consistency between your page structure and your body copy.

In the eyes of the search engines, everything that it can possibly see counts. That is, using image alt-text not only helps blind readers and people using phone- or text-based browsers, it also gives you another opportunity to add more descriptive strength to the overall page for the search engines. Do not miss any opportunity to further empower and refine your content. 

And always remember when writing for search engines – keep writing. Write write write. Search engine bots gorge on new information, and if you consistently update your site with fresh content they will come around more often. While this gives you more opportunities to display your value, more importantly it builds the foundation of information that obviates it.

There’s a lot to do, and it all needs to be done well. Use your numbers, metrics and analytics to point you in the right direction for creating more content. That’s some science. Your creativity and amount of useful information, on the other hand, will point site visitors and search engines in the right direction. That’s a touch of art. When both aspects of your SEO program are firing on all cylinders, you should soon be marching up the search engine rankings.

www.seo-mama.com

Next Page »