Monday, August 11, 2008


Blogging is a powerful way to generate traffic and
if you're not already doing it you should start now.

The search engines love blogs and you'll often see
blog posts dominate the top rankings for keywords.
You can take advantage of this by starting your
own blog (or blogs) to generate lots of new traffic
and funnel it all towards your main website.

You can build your website as a subsection of your
current website or you can build it as a separate,
standalone site.

Whichever you choose you'll want to make sure you link
back to your main site. Don't just link to your home
page either. Sprnkle in links to some of your other
pages too.

I recommend using either Blogger (good) or Wordpress
(the best) to create your new blog. They're both easy to
learn and use, and they're feature-rich and customizable.

You can host your blog on their servers, but I recommend
you register your own domain and host your blog yourself.

There's 2 very good reasons for you to host your own blog:

First, your url will look more professional and credible.

If you use Blogger, your domain will look like this:

And in Wordpress it will be:

But if you host it yourself it will simply be:

That's much easier to remember and much more credible to
your readers.

The second reason you should host your own blog is even
more important. Many blogs that are hosted on free services
like Blogger disappear without warning or reason. It's
happened to many a blogger, and you don't want to take
the chance of losing all your hard work for nothing.

Keys to a successful blog

Show some personality. A dull blog won't build much of a
following. Don't be afraid to take a stand. Stir up a
little controversy and get people talking about you blog.

Post least a couple times a week. Stale blogs
that aren't regularly updated quickly lose ther following.

Add an RSS feed so readers can subscribe to your blog and
be notified when you add a new post.

Find other blogs in your niche and add comments to their
posts. Most blogs let you add a link back to your own site.
You can use this method to build relationships and links
to your site, but don't abuse it. Post useful comments,
not sales pitches or SPAM.

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Web Traffic Methods to Avoid

If there's one question that every website
owner asks herself, it's this:

How can I get more traffic to my website?

The more visitors your site gets, the more
opportunities you have to make money through
sales and advertising.

But as more and more websites pop up everyday,
the competition for traffic is getting fierce.
Ideally, you should be getting traffic from
many different sources. And for the most part,
anything that brings you new visitors is good.

But there a few traffic-generating methods that
are just not worth the headaches. Let's talk
about two of them now.

The first traffic method you should avoid is
paid hits.

Now let's not confuse this with legitimate
advertising programs like Google AdWords. I'm
talking about services that advertise:

"10,000 unique visitors for only $9.95!"

Common sense should tell you that something is
fishy about these types of services. How can they
possibly deliver quality visitors for that price?

They can't.

They generally work in one of two ways. They
either use a script to "hit" your website over
and over again or they are part of a "paid to
surf" program. This type of program pays people
to visit websites, so all that happens is they
add your site to their queue and pay people to
visit it.

Unfortunately, your visitors will mostly keep
your site in the background while they do more
important things. Your sire will be visited, but
rarely read.

The second traffic method to avoid is called
"safe lists".

A safe list is a list of email addresses of
people that have supposedly agreed to receive
promotions via email.

A major problem with safe lists is that you have
no real way to verify that the owners of the email
addresses actually opted in. Their email addresses
could have been scraped from any number of blogs,
websites, forums, or discussion groups.

Sending emails to a safe list could result in
a rash complaints that could get your entire
website banned by your ISP.

It's just not worth the risk.

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Friday, August 8, 2008

Offline Methods For Generating Web Traffic

One of the biggest mistakes website owners
make is to limit their marketing and traffic
generation efforts to online methods only.

Let's face it, as much time as we spend on
our computers these days, most of us are
not online 24/7. If you're not making an
effort to tap into offline marketing
opportunities you're missing out on a
boatload of traffic.

Let take a look at some ways you can use
promote your website offline.

The Yellow Pages

You'd be surprised how many people still
use telephone books to find what they need.
Advertising in your local Yellow Pages is
an inexpensive way to promote your site

Turn your car into a traveling billboard.

You don't need to invest in expensive car
wrap advertising. A bumper sticker, license
plate holder or magnet that sticks to your
door will work fine. Everyone you pass on
the road will see your website's name and


Have your domain and logo printed on some
t-shirts and baseball caps and waer them
proudly. Give a few to your family and
friends too and let them be your mobile
sales force.

Sponsor a local sports team.

The Yankees and Red Sox have plenty of cash
to spare, but what about your local Little
League team? Help sponsor a team by paying
for uniforms and equipment. You'll get plenty
of press with each game played. Plus you'll
be doing good for your community.

Radio and TV.

National advertising is beyond the reach of
all but the biggest websites, but there's
nothing wrong with your local television and
radio stations. You can reach a whole new
audience with thousands of people who had
never heard of you before.

Snail mail.

Direct mail advertising was around long before
the internet, and it's not going away anytime
soon. It can be expensive though, so you'll
want to track your campaign carefully to be
sure you're not losing money.

Gifts and freebies.

There are lots of places that will put your
name and logo on just about anything...pencils,
calenders, coffee mugs, etc. These inexpensive
trinkets make great gifts for prospects and
associates, and they serve as a reminder of
what you have to offer them.

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Thursday, August 7, 2008

Pay Per Click (PPC) - Part 2

In part one, we explained how Pay Per Click programs
work, gave a short list of the most popular PPC
networks, and explained the difference between
appearing on search engine results pages and on
niche websites.

In this article, we'll share some valuable tips for
making the most of your PPC campaigns.

Entire books have been written on Google Adwords and
other PPC networks. Obviously we don't have room for
that kind of analysis here, but let's go over some
basics that will help improve your profitability.

1. Your choice of keywords is vital. You must choose
them wisely if you want to succeed. You'll have to
learn to balance two key factors.

First, people must actually be searching for the
keyword phrase you're using. You can get a rough
idea of how many monthly searches a keyword gets
by using programs such as Wordtracker or Keyword

But you must also take cost into account. It makes
little sense to pay $1.25 per click if each visitor
generates only fifty cents.

You need to find keyword phrases in the sweet spot
where they receive a good number of searches, but
the cost per click (CPC) is low enough to turn a

2. Use prequalifiers to discourage tire-kickers.
You have to pay for every click your ad gets, even
if that visitor has no intention of buying anything
from you.

One way to discourage information-seekers from
clicking your link is to mention the price in your
ad. This simple step makes it clear to them that
they should go elsewhere if they're looking for

3. Learn how to write effective sales copy. Don't
forget that you're writing an advertisement to
induce someone into clicking on your link.

Learning how to write persuasive copy and a powerful
headline will go a long way toward improving your
clickthrough rate.

4. Test constantly. PPC advertisers who don't test
their ads quickly blow their budget with little to
show for their troubles. You should constantly be
testing new headlines, copy, etc. to determine
what brings the best results.

You can then go back and adjust your PPC campaign
to funnel more money towards the ads that convert
the best.

5. Never stop learning. Look at competing ads. If
you see the same ones over and over again it's a
good bet that they're making someone money. You
can't just copy someone else's ads, but you can
learn from them.

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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Pay Per Click (PPC) - Part I

Pay Per Click (usually just called PPC) is a
traffic-generating method that involves paying
for each visitor to your site.

Depending on your niche and keywords you can
expect to pay anywhere from a few pennies to
ten dollars or more per visitor. PPC is an easy
way for any website to generate lots and lots
of traffic, but you have to be very careful or
you'll spend too much and run yourself right
out of business.

How exactly does PPC work?

Go to and search for the first thing
that comes to your mind. Take a look at the
search results. See the column on the right
labeled "Sponsored Links"?

Those are advertisements. Website owners and
internet marketers paid to have a link to their
website listed on that page through a sophisticated
system called Pay Per Click.

Let's look at a real life example.

Pretend you're in the market for a new charcoal
grill for barbecue season. You want to do some
research and maybe compare a few different models.
So you search for the term "charcoal grills" and,
in addition to the regular search results, Google
also displays some Sponsored Links.

These links are likely merchants who sell charcoal
grills or grill accessories. They each paid to be
there by bidding on the term "charcoal grills" with
the highest bids receiving the most prominent
positions on the page.

They paid to be on that particular page because they
know you are looking for exactly what they have to
offer. Pretty convenient, huh?

Think about your own niche and what kind of keywords
someone would use to find what you're offering. Then
you can use PPC advertising to buy ads to bring in
traffic by using those same keywords.

There are countless PPC networks on the internet and
more are popping up all the time. Here is a short list
of the most popular networks:

-Google Adwords
-Yahoo Search Marketing
-MSN Ad Center

Search Results vs Website Content

If you're going to advertise your site through a
Pay Per Click network, you'll need to decide where
to advertise. You can bid for a spot on a search
engine's results page for a specific keyword or you
can bid to appear on another website whose content
is about your keyword.

The general consensus is that you'll get better
results by appearing on search engine results pages.
But it really depends on your niche and your ad.
The best choice is to test both options and see
which works best for you.

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Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Get Free Traffic with eCourses

An eCourse is a an automated emails that are sent out
over a specified period of time.

eCourses usually consist of a series of lessons, and
they can cover any topic you'd like. If your site is
about babies you could create an eCourse called "How
to Get Your Baby to Sleep Through the Night in 7 Days"
and set it so subscribers receive one email per day
for 7 days.

The user remains on your mailing list, even after the
initial series is complete, so you can continue sending
future messages unless he manually unsubscribes.

Every message you send is an opportunity to steer your
subscribers back to your website (or to a merchant's site
via an affiliate link). Since they've already signed up
for your eCourse, you know they're already interested in
exactly the kind of information or services you have to

The real beauty of an eCourse is that once you set up
the series of emails you want to send out, it's
completely automated. It can continue to bring you
targeted traffic for years to come without ever doing
another thing. Of course you can always go back and
make changes any time you like.

How do I create my own eCourse?

It's easy to do. All you need is a tool called an

There are lots of autoresponders to choose from, but the
two biggest are Aweber and Get Response. You definitely
want to choose an autoresponder that is well-known and
trusted. A big part of your business will rely on your
autoresponder providing reliable service.

Once you sign up with an autoresponder, you'll be given
some code to paste into your site. The code will place
a box on your web pages to collect names and emails to
add to your mailing list.

VERY IMPORTANT - you want an autoresponder that uses a
double opt-in subscription method to protect you from
SPAM complaints by requiring subscribers to confirm
they want to subscribe before they can begin receiving
your eCourse.

The next step is to write your series of emails and
choose the frequency at which they'll be sent. From
there on in, your eCourse can be left on autopilot
while you work on other things. Once set up, an eCourse
can continue to bring in fresh traffic indefinitely.

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Monday, August 4, 2008


For website owners searching for new ways to
drive traffic to their sites, video is the next
big thing.

The drop in price of hardware and software needed
for creating video has made it possible for anyone
to make their own short films or commercials. You
could be the next Steven Speilberg or M. Night

Faster internet connections and the popularity of
sites such as YouTube allow you to share your video
creations with the entire world.

Even better, you can use them to drive lots of free
traffic to your site. Let's think of a few different
ways we can use video to get more people to your site.

Say you run a merchant site that sells bicycles. You
can make your own commercial for the bikes and post it
on YouTube. Of course, you'll need to be creative to
make your videos stand out from the masses.

Post a video that's really funny or different and it
may start spreading virally. Once a few people find it
they'll send it to their friends, family, and co-workers
to enjoy.

Or perhaps you sell an innovative product that is new
to the market, something unlike anything ever seen
before. Video is the perfect way to get your message
out because you can actually show people how your
product works rather then explaining it to them. A
picture (or video) really is worth a thousand words.

Let's pretend your site offers accounting software for
small business owners. You can create a video tutorial
that demonstrates the software in action. Walking
prospects through a few transactions so they can see how
easy it is to use will be more effective than just saying,
"My accounting software is easy to use."

Plus, you can create a whole series of video tutorials
to serve as customer support. You'll spend less time and
resources helping confused customers if you have videos
that teach them step by step.

In order to create these types of tutorials, you'll need
some special software that lets you record screenshots
and add your own audio commentary.

You have two basic options.

Camtasia is the best but it costs a few hundred dollars
(you can take a free trial to feel it out before buying).

Or you can use CamStudio, which is free. It's not as
powerful as Camtasia but it's fine for most of your video

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