30 November 2006

Internet Marketing Qualification

I have learned so much about internet marketing in the past year, but sometimes it is hard to assimilate everything I come across. I sometimes feel like President Bush - I don't know what I don't know! So I have decided to go back to college and get a qualification in Information Technology. I found a course with an online college so I do not even have to leave the comfort of my own home to study. I have a virtual classroom that I can use, and a Tutor. There are more and more courses being offered in this way, up to degree level, and not just IT courses. You can study business, education, human resources and psychology if you wish.


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Domain Name Parking Can Make You Money

If you have any domains that you are not using at the moment, you can park them and make a residual income from them. The way it works is this - you direct your domain names to your Domain Parking Company's DNS Servers.
It is really simple to register with a reputable agency like Name Drive, and you start earning extra income from visits to your web page. When a visitor lands there, they see a page of search results that are related to the name or subject of your domain. As they click on any of the sponsored links, you earn money in the same way as Google Adsense or other Pay Per Click advertising. It is free to register, your domain can be earning residual income within hours.

Each time a surfer clicks on one of these sponsored links you earn an income, similar to using any other Pay Per Click search engines or publishing network.

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29 November 2006

Use Adwords for Traffic to Website or Blog

I have been reading Tim Phelan's Blog, and found some good ideas for using Google Adwords to get Traffic to Increase your Adsense Income. If you want to try this I recommend that you read my Free Guide to Using Adwords
Here is what you need to make it work I think:
1. A site that people will want to come back to. For whatever reason they bookmark the site or just remember the name. ( Or perhaps you can set up the a newsletter capture page and send out something to get them to come back.)

2. Steady use of the adwords ad. If it is working at all and you do get the repeat visitors then you should see a steady improvement on the cost of the adwords ad and the revenue of the adsense.

For example, if on the first day you try this and you spend $10 and you get $10.50 from adsense, then you may be tempted to say "That's not going to work. 50 cents? Big deal." and stop the ad. But if you keep it going and you see a steady increase in profit margin then you should keep the ad going. That means people are coming back. Eventually you may want to stop the ad but why as long as your traffic and margin keeps going up?

3. Having an affiliate product or your own product to sell on the site also. This may help you determine whether or not to keep trying to use adwords to get traffic to the site.

This particular site where I got over 1000 clicks yesterday was doing OK for months at a couple hundred clicks. But I tried an inexpensive adwords campaign and the amount I spend on the campaign has remained the same as the amount of traffic has continued to increase to the point now that it is 5 times more than what it was.

I am trying this on a few other sites as well, including one site that is a pure sales site for a niche industry, reselling hundreds of products from shareasale. This one is a little different because I am spending more on the adwords than what I am making on adsense and the sales of the products combined. However I am willing to do that because I see a decrease in the difference and I can see it reaching the point where I will be making more because this site is well made, has a good domain name that people should remember and I want to brand the site.

So is using adwords, or any ppc advertising, a worthwhile way to make money from your adsense sites? I would say yes, but you need to pay attention, watch the figures and test the ads. If it doesn't work out, try another site though. Many just won't work this way. And this probably won't work with the average adsense type site with just articles, feeds and adsense.'

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28 November 2006

Auto Insurance Rates

I have been immersed in car prices and car insurance as my partner is looking for a new car. We are keen to keep insurance costs down, due to an unlucky spate of recent car smacks. The last was 'beyond economic repair', hard to credit as the damage was restricted to the rear tailgate. A new HD DVD release this week from Progressive Direct shows car smashes in Tokyo, on each collision a counter tots up the cost: "Roof repair: $209, taillights: $451, fender: $618.". Really made us think - if you need a good auto insurance rate, check it out. Even after the last collision and the loss of no-claims bonus, she still saved cash by comparing insurance quotes online.



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26 November 2006

Google, Yahoo and Microsoft team up for Sitemaps protocol

This is important news for all webmasters, which can save you time and make your life simpler.
"Google, Yahoo and Microsoft have agreed to support the Sitemap 0.9 protocol. How can this new standard help you to improve the ranking of your web site in search engines? What are sitemaps and what is the Sitemaps protocol?

Sitemaps are an easy way for webmasters to inform search engines about pages on their sites that are available for crawling.In its simplest form, a sitemap is an XML file that lists URLs for a site along with additional metadata about each URL:

* when it was last updated
* how often it usually changes
* how important it is, relative to other URLs in the site

This helps search engines to more intelligently crawl your site.

The Sitemaps 0.9 protocol is a new standard that will make it easier to create a sitemap that can be parsed by all search engines.

How can you benefit from this new standard?
Web crawlers usually discover pages from links within the site and from other sites. Sitemaps supplement this data to allow crawlers that support sitemaps to pick up all URLs in the sitemap and learn about those URLs using the associated metadata.

The sitemap allows you to inform search engines about the pages on your web site. Depending on how your web site is structured, it can be easier for search engines to find all of your web pages if you use a sitemap.

Does using the Sitemaps 0.9 protocol improve your search engine rankings?
Using the Sitemap protocol does not guarantee that your web pages are included in search engines, but provides hints for web crawlers to do a better job of crawling your site.

A sitemap helps search engines to find your web pages but it does not help you to get higher search engine rankings. High rankings on search engines are the result of good inbound links and optimized web page content.

If your web pages have both, then search engines will give them high rankings.

The new sitemaps protocol can help you to inform search engines about your web pages. Further information about the new sitemaps standard can be found on the official sitemaps web site. From Free SEO News

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23 November 2006

Search Engines - Metasearch beats Google

We receive more search engine traffic to our sites from MSN, Yahoo SearchBigDaddy and Dogpile than Google so I was interested to see this story:
Dogpile® Earns Highest Search Engine Customer Satisfaction Ranking.
"BUSINESS WIRE writes that Dogpile.com, the search engine that combines the top results from all the leading search engines, ranked highest in overall customer satisfaction among Internet users. The study was based on responses from 10,787 residential customers of Internet service providers nationwide.

Included in the study for the first time, Dogpile.com scored top ratings from Internet service subscribers in all three factors that determine overall satisfaction within the segment: ease of use, functionality and results. As the Web's leading metasearch engine, Dogpile.com meets the needs of Internet users by offering the most comprehensive view of the Web and helping them retrieve the most relevant results.

J.D. Power and Associates study also finds that nearly 75 percent of Internet subscribers use multiple search engines. Forty-four percent of those customers report using multiple search engines because each one has better sources depending on customer needs. Dogpile.com combines results from multiple engines to bring together the highest ranked results in one place.

Dogpile.com first reported that a major disparity existed between the results returned by the top search engines in 2005, citing a University of Pittsburgh and Pennsylvania State University study. It found that, on average, there was a mere three percent overlap among the results returned on the first page by Google, Yahoo and Ask Jeeves. The study showed that entering the same search term on the most popular engines yielded differing outcomes, resulting in substantial amounts of missing information. This meant that for the vast majority of searches conducted on these sites, users wouldn’t see results that are ranked at or near the top of the first page by the others."

SearchBigDaddy is a search engine that pays you to use it- sign up free and get $50 in PPC credits

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20 November 2006

Your Home as a Business Entrepreneur Center

Using your home for a successful business requires a lot of organization. You still need the home to be a suitable place to eat, relax and sleep, if you and the rest of your family are to coexist in harmony. If you are starting to use your home for your business, you are not alone.

The days of dormitory suburbs are over, and every town and village contains aspiring teleworkers, desperate to leave soul-destroying jobs in large conglomerates. The home has massive potential to adapt for multiple use, with a little planning and adaptation.

If you need a well resourced home office for your business, choose an area that is comfortable and suitable. Decide how much space you need, make sure it is well lit and warm enough. If you are using your computer, make sure your seat is well designed. Repetitive strain and neck injuries are sadly becoming more common and this will not help your business!

Businesses that require stock can be a real challenge for the home entrepreneur. Look for a space where you can access the items easily, and store them at the right temperature without causing a hazard to anyone else at home. If you turn a garage over to storage of goods, that could be eligible for a tax allowance so check with your accountant.

Do you need to meet customers or clients at your home? Make sure you have an area that looks professional and businesslike, where you can take them without tripping over bicycles or children's toys. If you start to get more than a couple of visitors a day, you will need to think about getting permission to carry on a formal business from the local council - before the neighbours start complaining. Or meet your visitors elsewhere - depending on the situation, you may consider checking out cafes or hotels where noise levels are not too high. Otherwise look for a local serviced office centre, where you can often rent space by the day or even the hour.

Using your home as a business centre can save you a lot of cash, and help you get started in the tough early days of your new home business.

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16 November 2006

Manage Time Effectively for Online Success

I have been giving some thought to my time management recently. No matter what you do for a living, managing your time well will bring massive benefits. By using my time better, I can achieve more - we all know that, so why is time management so hard to put into practice?

Time management means doing things more effectively - not just efficiently - and deciding which things should be left out.

Even the most effective time managers can waste time. When we have an important but unpleasant task to do, we can tend to procrastinate or decide another job is high priority. This is sometimes called a distraction activity. For example, when you need to sort out a dispute with the bank you decide that grooming the dog is more urgent.

Working from home, it is easy to blur the edges between work and leisure, with free time being the loser. Everyone needs to block off some play time - use it for grooming the dog if you can't think of anything better! Seriously, as we get older we sometimes make less effort to keep up with friends and family: they are important, and deserve our attention.

Using your leisure time well has huge physical health benefits, too. For you, this could mean going to the gym or playing a round of golf. For me, it means we get out for at least one walk every weekend in addition to the daily short walks that all dog owners enjoy. The big weekly walk, and any social engagements, make me feel I have spent the weekend well.

Some of my steps for better time management -
- checking my email only once in the morning, once at lunchtime, once in the afternoon - and closing the tab in-between
- checking my Adsense, affiliate program and sitemeter figures every 48 hours only - not three times a day
- going out to the pub with my partner one evening during the week, for a chance to talk about wider subjects and meet other people
- leave the house for fresh air at least every three hours: even just to walk the block
- putting the laptop out of sight in the evenings

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14 November 2006

Relevant Content for Success with Google Adwords and Adsense

I get a little fed up with seeing offers for 'success with Google in 5 days' and the like. The basic message, whether you are optimizing your site for a search engine, or buying an Adwords pay per click campaign, is to provide Google with consistently relevant content.

For example, this blog is on the topic of online business ideas. With very few exceptions, I write about business. If I want to write about adsense, dogs or cheap travel deals, then I will put the content on to those sites.

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10 November 2006

Website Income Generation Strategies

Here are some top business ideas for all webmasters and bloggers:

People always seem to be looking for the latest business ideas: if you have a home based business you are especially prey to mounds of email, each one claiming to have found the best way to make money online. There is nothing wrong with being innovative and trying new methods to generate online earnings. The problem comes up when people, seeking new methods, forget to pay attention to the proven methods of making money online. What has worked in the past for successful webmasters is still working today, and will likely continue to work into the foreseeable future. There are four main areas a webmaster must focus on to be successful, regardless of the type of website you run or the product or service that you sell.

Conversions are critical. You can get a million visitors to your site, but that means nothing if none of them make a purchase at your site. Conversions are calculated as the percentage of people that make a purchase at your site, compared to the number of total visitors.

The higher your conversion rate, the less traffic that you need to your site. Many webmasters struggle with getting that all-important traffic to their site. So instead of exclusively chasing traffic, also work on increasing the amount of traffic that you can convert into sales. There are a number of ways that you can do this with your online business.

Many webmasters understand that having a compelling sales letter, or sales pitch, is crucial. If you do not have the best possible sales letter, then you are losing potential customers. If you do not feel comfortable writing your own sales letter, consider hiring a copywriter to do it for you. You could also ask the copywriter to develop a few sales letters for your business, and you can do a comparitive analysis to see which ones bring the best conversion results for your business.

You can also improve your conversion ratio by paying attention to the layout of your web pages. There are a lot of different opinions on the best layouts for selling your products or services. For me there are a couple of easy ways to determine web page layouts.

The first thing that I consider is what I like and dislike about other websites. Is it hard to find the product on the page? Is the price hidden? Is a description of the product easy to find? Is the ordering information easy to find?

The other factor that I look at is what successful webmasters before me have done with their layout. There is no need to reinvent the wheel here. Instead of spending weeks trying to develop my own perfect layout, I will start with a template similar to those that are known for making high conversions.

Linking For Traffic Now that we have covered conversions, we can talk about linking for traffic. While your conversions may be very good, they will never reach 100%. So what this means is that the more of that precious traffic you get (at whatever conversion rate you are getting) will result in more sales and more money. It is known that the more links you have to your website, the more traffic that you will get. The links to your site are critical in driving traffic.

First of all, people click those links. I value a link from a high traffic website as much or more than a link from a high PageRank site, because actual humans are likely to be clicking the link to my website. I also place a very high value on having articles published in ezines and newsletters, because it always results in a nice boost in my website's traffic. The amount of traffic that comes as a result of having an article published in an ezine or newsletter will of course vary depending on the number of subscribers on the list.

A certain percentage of readers will always click the links that I have in a webpage or an ezine. And a certain percentage of those who visit my website will convert to sales. Having my link appear in some ezines or newsletters can literally translate to thousands or tens of thousands of visitors to my website in a single day!

If you utilize article distributions, you can often get your articles published on a variety of websites and ezines. These articles will have your link in the author box, and you will also have the opportunity to discuss your web site and the products or services that you offer in your author box. This being said, the more effort you put into writing a good article and author box, the more likely you are to get some traffic as a result.

Linking Popularity Building links for search engine placement purposes is just as important as linking for traffic. The more relevant back links that you have coming into your site, the higher your website will rank in the major search engines for your keywords. Back links are one of the best ways that you can get your online business to rank near the top of the search engines for your niche.

Be sure to use an anchor text on those links that is the same or similar to the keywords that you are targeting. Also, try to get those back links from relevant sites as much as possible. By this, I mean try to get those links from sites and webpages that have something in common with your site. A link from a webpage about bird watching will have little in common with your website about automobiles.

To illustrate the importance of back links, look at Digg.com. They have a whopping 131,000 back links, which is why they are one of the most popular social book marking sites on the Internet.

Link Baiting Link baiting is a great way to get those important back links, both for traffic and for link popularity. But, what is link baiting? It is when you have something so interesting / amusing / informative / useful that people will want to link to you, without you asking them to do so. Having something on your site that people will blog about, tell their friends about, or to send emails to their contacts about, is what constitutes link baiting. Your bait is so powerful that the fish will basically jump into the boat, without you ever needing to ask!

What kind of things work as link bait? This will depend a lot on the audience that you are trying to reach. In the SEO world, good link bait is placing free webmaster tools on your site. This means that people will bookmark the site; refer to it on forums, and possibly blog about what they learned by using your free webmaster tools.

If you are able to grow a reputation among your niche market as an expert, people will cite you and your website because of the quality information that you offer. If you run a humor site, people will forward the URL to their friends and tell them to check out a certain page.

Link baiting is also why social bookmarking is exploding in popularity. If you have an article that gets onto the front page of simpy via link baiting, you will have an explosion in traffic. The same can be said for all of the major social bookmarking sites.

Link baiting is all about offering something unique that people will want to tell their friends about and that they will want to talk about. Spend some serious time thinking about what you can offer to your customer base that will result in successful link baiting for your website.

In Conclusion If you spend your time focusing on these four ways to make money with your online business, you are sure to be well ahead of most of your competitors. Optimize your site for conversions, build links for traffic, create links for popularity, and dangle some link bait for others to share, and you will find your customer base beginning to grow, and you will see your sales will start to improve.

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by Trey Pennewell
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09 November 2006

Make Money or Make Friends - Be Hated and Rich?

Not just another moneymaking ebook - BecomeHated for being rich is an extremely useful course on all aspects of internet business, written by seven top entrepreneurs. This ebook covers all the topics you need to run your own website. It is so comprehensive, you will not need to buy dozens of different books on every single topic - the authors of this book give you exactly the knowledge you need. The Be Hated book is less well known than some of the other ebooks we recommend, but in some ways it is better as it covers so many business subjects and techniques. Be Hated and Rich is ideal for beginners and also for more advanced users. All I can say is that the simple techniques in this course really work, and are mostly free and bring good results. The book has 77 pages and nine chapters, and carries a full 30 day guarantee.

Every chapter covers different but important things about running your own website. If you are serious about building your own website or you want to learn something new and fun and maybe start earning a good extra cash online I recommend this book. If you are not sure yet or whther an internet business is right for you, there are two chapters which will help you decide. They give ideas for earning extra cash doing very little in 2 or 3 hours a day.
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