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Class Notes: New Year’s Resolutions for the Internet Marketer

December 28, 2004

I’d like to thank everyone who joined me for today’s free teleclass, New Year’s Resolutions for the Internet Marketer. If you missed this one, be sure to catch next week’s free teleclass — Your Website & The 30 Second Sale.

Here are the notes from this afternoon’s teleclass:

On a successful small business web site, the primary source of traffic will tend to be search engine traffic. There’s a lot of advice out there on search engine optimization, some good and some not so good, but virtually all of it agrees on a few basic concepts:

  • Search engines like fresh content.
  • Relevant links to your site improve your traffic
  • The more unique, original material you have, the higher the odds that some of it will get traffic.

As a bonus, the more fresh and unique content you add, the more people will tend to browse and return to your site, giving you more opportunities to sell your products or services. Likewise, the more links you have to your site from relevant pages, the more people will find your site — even without search engines.

Search engine results change slowly and subtly. It might take two or three months to notice a difference, but the longer it takes you to start, and the slower you go, the longer it will be before you see the results.

  • Doing these things every day is 7 times better than doing them once a week.
  • Doing them once a week is 4 – 5 times better than doing them once a month.
  • Doing them once a month is better than not doing them at all.

Fresh Content

So, how do you get fresh, unique content?

The best way is to get it is the old-fashioned way — you write articles. They don’t necessarily need to be long, but they should be interesting and on-topic with the message of your site.

Once you have articles, what do you do with them?

  • Publish them on your site.
  • Add links to them from a sitemap page.
  • Submit them to free article sites, so that others can use them with links to your site.

(See our Free Resources section for links to writing resources and lists of pages where you can submit your articles)

Other sources of content — if you give classes, teleclasses or other group sessions, post your notes on your site.

If you write articles for other sites or publications, publish any of them that relate to your site’s message on your site.

Getting links to your site

  • Write free articles that include your link.
  • Professional directories and listings.
  • Reciprocal link exchanges
    • Find other web sites in your niche that you feel are both good and representative.
    • Put a nice link to that site on your site.
    • Let the other site owner know that you’ve put up a link, and ask if they’d consider putting up one in return. (Don’t be spammy)
    • If they don’t respond / act in a reasonable period of time, feel free to take the link down.
  • Interact with people on other sites
  • Posting Comments
    • Find other sites (particularly blogs) that let readers comment (and let them include a link
    • Post relevant, insightful comments. Actually contribute — remember that some of your potential customers will form an opinion about you based on that comment. Include your link.
  • Contribute to online forums and discussions, with a link in your signature.
    • Look at what others are doing carefully and read site rules to determine what is acceptable.
    • Make sure the contents of the site are appropriate for your link
    • The search engine benefits of this one in particular are debatable, but you’ve widened your exposure and may lead potential customers to your site.

Other suggestions:
Automated link exchange software was discussed. Cyber-Robotics Zeus was suggested as a good tool for finding and and managing link exchanges, although it might be a bit much for a person with a single site. Linksmanager was also suggested, it’s a more automated process, but it involves an ongoing monthly fee ($20).

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