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Ecommerce & Web Marketing Ezine. 1 June 2003

View the TTB Ezine Archive

In this issue

- Moving servers? Article published
- Search engines and other strange animals
- The promotion wakeup call
- Alternate promotion strategies
- Paid promotion issues
- The road ahead

Greetings all,

I hope the last couple of weeks has treated you well!

I've noticed more and more articles being published over the last fortnight by respected sources stating that the future is looking  bright for online business - fingers crossed that the dot.gloom era is nearly over and that the dot.yay era is about to begin - as long as the dot.boom mentality doesn't kick in again. Anyway, enough
of dot stuff....

Moving servers?

Last fortnight I mentioned that I would be publishing an article of points to take into consideration when moving to a new web host or to a different server under your current hosting service. You can view the article here:

http://www.tamingthebeast.net/ articles3/moving-servers.htm 

Search Engines & other strange animals..

Also in the last issue I mentioned that Google had been toying with some new strategies in relation to their algorithm and indexing techniques that have set the SEOP (Search Engine Optimization Professional) world abuzz..

If you're still continuing to notice a strange and unexpected boost or decrease in traffic from the Mighty G over previous months, it's *still* not time to weep or celebrate - the integration of changes are still occurring.

Actually, if you were thinking of engaging the services of an SEOP in the next couple of weeks or carrying out any Google-oriented "tweaks" based on the current results - wait - focus on building solid content and reciprocal link partners instead. If you'd like some tips on how to request reciprocal links, please view:

http://www.tamingthebeast.net/ articles2/internet-marketing-etiquette.htm 

The reason I'm suggesting holding off on engaging an SEOP is that rankings are very fluid at the moment, and from what I'm hearing from industry professionals is that none of them really have a clue as to how this will all pan out. There's a whole stack of content missing from the Google index, although the company assures that all will be set right in the next couple of weeks.

Bear in mind that the essence of optimization is solid, key term rich content and backlinks - something that should be a part of your overall strategy anyway.

I'm also noticing that a number of webmasters are considering moving towards spammy optimization tactics based on what they are currently seeing in Google results - but I still believe this to be a very dangerous strategy. Google has mentioned that a number of elements are yet to be introduced in the changes - including some spam filters.

Also becoming more popular is the use of blogs to increase ranking - don't count on this strategy being successful for too much longer. Google may segregate blogs from general results - it's just a whisper, but something to take into consideration.

Where do I get my info from?

Many people have emailed me in the past about where I pick up SE oriented news, whispers and strategies.  Many of the strategies we use have been through trial and error over the years, but an excellent external resource I regularly consult is WebMasterWorld:

http://www.webmasterworld.com

If you take a trip out to WebMasterWorld, ensure you have a packed lunch and plenty of time - it's a huge resource. You'll find many search engine companies have representatives hanging out in the forums and they will (sort of) answer your questions from time to time and take note of feedback.

The Promotion Wake-Up Call..

What the last few weeks has accentuated is the fact that building an online business around any particular search engine is very risky. While the SE's should always be forefront in your mind when developing content, we also need to be very aware of other forms promotion.

If you do receive a substantial amount of traffic from one source, and are generating good income from those referrals - congratulations! But it would be very wise to salt away a couple of months of profits to carry you through should that source suddenly dry up.

Alternate promotion strategies

Probably one of the best strategies outside of search engines for generating free traffic are viral marketing techniques. You can learn more about some of them here:

Viral Marketing Overview:

http://www.tamingthebeast.net/ articles/viralmarketing.htm 

eBooks and Viral Marketing:

http://www.tamingthebeast.net/ articles/ebooksviralmarketing.htm 

Another free way to generate traffic via your site is through a "Tell-A-Friend" scripts. We receive many hundreds of visitors each month through this tool. Those hundreds of visitors probably are worth the equivalent of at least a thousand visits coming via search engines due to the targeted nature of the source - a personal recommendation.

The "Tell-A-Friend" script used on Taming the Beast.net can be downloaded for free from Robert Fogt of the BlueSparks Network:

http://www.bluesparks.com/ 

Robert also has some other excellent scripts on his site worth checking out.

Paid promotion issues

More and more online business owners are coming to terms with having to pay for placement and per click. This is a veritable minefield, where you can lose money faster than you can say 'PPC'.

You really need to be on your toes if engaging in paid promotion. 

For further info on PPC (Pay Per Click) and PPV (Pay Per View) issues, view my updated article:

http://www.tamingthebeast.net/ articles/buywebtraffic.htm 

If you are considering investigating pay for placement on search engines, a summary of the various current rates can be viewed in our Beginners Guide to Search Engine Optimization:

http://www.tamingthebeast.net/ articles2/search-engine-optimization.htm 

The road ahead..

We're going to see some further *major* shakeups in the months ahead in the search engine world - many deals are being struck and all companies are positioning themselves for an even fiercer battle than usual. 

Yahoo has acquired Inktomi, Google has acquired Applied Semantics, MSN has thrown down the gauntlet as well. FAST (AllTheWeb) are making steady improvements and even Alta Vista seems to be gearing up for a re-emergence. Added to these, there's the new players such as Turbo10 and Info.com hoping to grab a share of the pie with advanced meta-search applications.

Who will win? I honestly don't know - but I can guarantee one thing - I'll be a whole lot greyer by the end of the year ;)

Other resources on Taming the Beast.net

Search engine optimization tutorials

General web marketing & promotion articles

Online business security articles and tools

Affiliate marketing strategies and tutorials

Ecommerce tutorials and guides.

Web development tutorials and articles

Have a good fortnight!

Regards,

Michael Bloch
Taming the Beast.net
http://www.tamingthebeast.net
Tutorials, web content, tools and software
Web Marketing, eCommerce & Internet solutions. 
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