Archive for the ‘marketing plan’ Tag

Plan Your Internet Success – Resources


Resources Covered (Read all or click on the resource of your choice to go directly its details):

1 Page Rank Resources
2 Linking Resources
3 Keyword Resources
4 Site Map
5 Search Engine Resources
6 HTML Resources
7 HTML Resources
8 Domain Related
9 Web Stats Resources
10 Google Specific Resources
11 Web Site Design and Tools
12 Keywords (Additional Resources)
13 Newsletters and Articles
14 ISAPI Rewrites
15 Link Exchange
16 Search Engine Submissions
17 Miscellaneous Resources

I hope you’ll appreciate this list and find it useful.

RESOURCES

Page Rank

1. Rank Checker (Ranking Tool – http://www.iwebtool.com/rank) – Get an overview of your Web site’s ranking.
2. Page Rank Lookup (PageRank Lookup – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/pagerank-lookup/) – Check the page rank for a Web site.
3. Google PageRank Prediction (PageRank Prediction – Predict Page Rank Predictor – http://www.iwebtool.com/pagerank_prediction) – Check predicted PR of a site.
4. Multi-Rank Checker (Rank Checker – http://www.iwebtool.com/multirank) – View your Google PageRank and Alexa ranking in bulk.
5. PageRank Checker (PageRank Checker – Check Your Google Page Rank – http://www.iwebtool.com/pagerank_checker) – View your Google PageRank on different Google servers.

Links Related

1. Reciprocal Link Check (Reciprocal Link Checker – http://www.webconfs.com/reciprocal-link-checker.php) – Check whether your link partners are linking back to your Web site.
2. Link Popularity Checker (LinkWorth | LinkQuote – Text Link Quote – http://www.linkworth.com/link_popularity.php) – A popularity score given to a Web site based on inbound links.
3. LinkPrice Lookup (LinkWorth | LinkQuote – Text Link Quote – http://www.linkworth.com/tools/price-quote.php) – Check the price of your link.
4. Link Price Calculator (Link Price Calculator – http://www.webconfs.com/link-value.php) – Another tool for checking the price of links.
5. Link Checker (http://www.ranks.nl/cgi-bin/ranksnl/tools/checklink.pl) – Check your links to see if they are still valid or not.
6. Link Popularity (Link Popularity – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/link-popularity/) – Checks the total number of Web pages that link to a Web site.
7. Link Price Calculator (Link Price Calculator – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/link-price/) – Help to determine the approximate amount you should be paying (or charging) per month for a text link (ad) from each and every page of the specified Web site.
8. Site Link Analyzer (Site Link Analyzer – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/site-link-analyzer/) – Analyze a given Web page and return a table of data containing columns of outbound links and their associated anchor text.
9. URL Rewriting (URL Rewriting – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/url-rewriting/) – Convert dynamic URLs into static looking HTML URLs.
10. Link Extractor (Link Extractor – http://www.iwebtool.com/link_extractor) – Extract links from a specific Web page.
11. Link Shortener (Link Shortener – Short/Shortcut Link – Hits Counter – http://www.iwebtool.com/link_shortener) – Shorten a Web address.
12. Backlink Anchor Text Analyzer (http://www.webconfs.comURLnchor-text-analysis.phphttp://www.webconfs.comurlnchor-text-analysis.php/) – Check link text used by your backlinks to link to your Web site.

Keyword related

1. Keyword Verification (Search Engine Placement Check – Marketleap Search Engine Verification Tool – http://www.marketleap.com/verify/default.htm) – Checks to see if your site is in the top three pages of a search engine result for a specific keyword.
2. Keyword Density Analyzer (Mark Horrell – Keyword density analyser – http://www.markhorrell.com/tools/density.asp) – Another SEO tools for keywords.
3. Keyword Cloud (Keyword Cloud – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/keyword-cloud/) – A visual representation of keywords used on a Web site.
4. Keyword Density (Keyword Density – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/keyword-density/) – Another SEO tool for checking keyword density.
5. Keyword Difficulty Check (Keyword Difficulty Check – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/keyword-difficulty/) – See how difficult it would be to rank for specific keywords or phrases.
6. Keyword Optimizer (Keyword Optimizer – SEO Tools – Search Engine Optimization, Google Optimization – http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/keyword-optimizer/) – Optimizer your keywords with this tool.
7. Keyword Suggestion (Keyword Suggestion Tool – http://www.iwebtool.com/keyword_suggestion) – Find related keywords matching your search.

Site Map

1. XML-Sitemaps (Create your Google Sitemap Online – XML Sitemaps Generator http://www.xml-sitemaps.com/) – Build your site map online (XML, ROR, Text, HTML).
2. GsiteCrawler (Google Sitemap Generator for Windows: GsiteCrawler – http://gsitecrawler.com/) – Google (and Yahoo!) Sitemap Generator for Windows.
3. Validate XML Sitemap (Google XML Sitemap Validator – XML Sitemaps Generator – http://www.xml-sitemaps.com/validate-xml-sitemap.html) – Search Engine Optimization Tool for validating your XML sitemaps.

Search Engines

1. Google Analytics (http://www.google.com/analytics/) – Tells you everything about your visitors.
2. Google Banned Checker (http://www.iwebtool.com/google_banned) – Check whether a site is banned by Google or not.
3. Search Engine Bot Simulator (http://www.xml-sitemaps.com/se-bot-simulator.html) – SEO tool to simulate search engine parsing of Web pages and display discovered links.
4. Indexed pages (http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/indexed-pages/) – Check the number of indexed pages for your blog.
5. Spider Simulator (http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/spider-simulator/) – Simulates a search engine by displaying the contents of a Web page.
6. Search Engine Friendly Redirect Checker (http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/redirect-check/) – Checks the exact HTTP headers that a web server is sending with an HTTP response.
7. Search Engine Position (http://www.iwebtool.com/search_engine_position) – Locate your search listings on Google and Yahoo!
8. Search Listings Preview (http://www.iwebtool.com/search_listings_preview) – Preview your Web site on Google, MSN and Yahoo! Search.

HTML Resources

1. HTML Encrypt (http://www.iwebtool.com/html_encrypter) – Hide your HTML source code.
2. HTML Optimizer (http://www.iwebtool.com/html_optimizer) – Optimize and clean your HTML source code.
3. HTTP Headers (http://www.iwebtool.com/http_headers) – Extract the HTTP headers of a web page.
4. HTTP Headers Viewer (http://www.xml-sitemaps.com/http-headers-viewer.html) – Check HTTP headers for any specific URL.
5. Meta-tags Extractor (http://www.iwebtool.com/metatags_extractor) – Extract meta-tags information from a Web page.
6. Meta Tags Generator (http://www.iwebtool.com/metatags_generator) – Generate and configure your meta tags.
7. META Analyzer (http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/meta-analyzer/) – Analyze a Web site’s meta tags.
8. Meta Tag Generator (http://www.seochat.com/seo-tools/meta-tag-generator/) – Help you to generate meta tags.
9. Source Code Viewer (http://www.iwebtool.com/code_viewer) – View the source code of a page.

Domain Related

1. Alexa Traffic Rank (http://www.iwebtool.comURLlexa_traffic_rank) – View and compare Alexa Ranking graphs.
2. Domain Age Tool (http://www.webconfs.com/domain-age.php) – Find out the age of your competitors’ domains.
3. Domain Stats Tool (http://www.webconfs.com/domain-stats.php) – Get all kind of statistics of your competitors’ domains.
4. Domain Availability (http://www.iwebtool.com/domain_availability) – Check the availability of domains.
5. Domain Look-up (http://www.iwebtool.com/domain_lookup) – Retrieve a range of information about a domain.
6. Domain “Whois” (http://www.iwebtool.com/whois) – Retrieve domain “whois” information.
7. Instant Domain Checker (http://www.iwebtool.com/instant) – Instantly check the availability of domains.
8. Ping Test (http://www.iwebtool.com/ping) – Check the presence of an active connection.
9. Reverse IP/Look-up (http://www.iwebtool.com/reverse_ip) – Resolve a host to an IP address.
10. Server Status (http://www.iwebtool.com/server_status) – Check if your Web site is online or offline.
11. Web site Speed Test (http://www.iwebtool.com/speed_test) – Find out how fast your Web site loads.
12. What Is My IP Address (http://www.whatismyipaddress.com/) – Shows your IP address.
13. IP to City (http://www.webconfs.com/ip-to-city.php) – Determine the country, city, latitude and longitude of an IP address.
14. Web site to Country (http://www.webconfs.com/website-to-country.php) – Determine the country in which the specified Web site is hosted.

Web Stats

1. Statcounter (http://www.statcounter.com/) – Free web tracker.
2. HiStats (http://www.histats.com/) – Real time updated Web stats service.
3. Addfreestats (http://www.addfreestats.com/) – Free Web site statistics.

Google Specific

1. Reporting Spam to Google – http://www.google.com/contact/spamreport.html
2. Use Google to search your Web site –
http://www.google.com/services/free.html
3. Submit your Web site to Google – http://www.google.com/addurl.html
4. Monitor Keyword Phrases – http://google.com/webalerts (This is neat to check out; however it does not help that much.)
5. Google’s Guidelines for Webmasters – http://www.google.com/webmasters/guidelines.html (A must-read for new users.)
6. Facts for Webmasters – http://www.google.com/webmasters/facts.html
7. Having Trouble? Contact Google Directly – http://www.google.com/ads/offices.html

Web site Design and Tools

1. Free forms for your Web site TFMail – http://nms-cgi.sourceforge.net/
2. Validate Your HTML – http://validator.w3.org/
3. HTTP Error Code Meanings – http://www.searchengineworld.com/val…errorcodes.htm
4. Keyword Tracking – http://www.digitalpoint.com/tools/keywords/
5. Link Checker – http://dev.w3.org/cvsweb/~checkout~/…0charset=utf-8 (http://dev.w3.org/cvsweb/%7Echeckout…0charset=utf-8)
6. Search Engine Relationship Chart – http://www.bruceclay.com/web_rank.htm Bruce Clay does an excellent job of keeping this updated.
7. Link Popularity Checker (Uptime Bot) – http://www.uptimebot.com/
8. Character Counting – http://a1portal.com/freetools/charcount.htm (This is great when optimizing your title or meta tags.)
9. Converting Hex to Dec or Is-a-Versa http://www.hypersolutions.org/pages/hex.html#DectoHex
10. ASCII-Dec-Hex Conversion Code Chart – http://www.sonofsofaman.com/misc/ascii/default.asp
11. ASCII-HTML View Conversion Chart – http://a1portal.com/freetools/asciicodes.htm (This is an excellent resource when placing ASCII code on your Web site. Remember to use the correct character encoding.)
12. Ascii Chart in .GIF Format – http://www.jimprice.com/ascii-0-127.gif
13. Customer Focus Tool – http://www.futurenowinc.com/wewe.htm (Tells you whether your Web site is focused on your customers or not.)
14. Dead Link Checker – http://www.dead-links.com/ (Does not crawls links within a JavaScript frame.)
15. Adsense Simulator – http://www.digitalpoint.com/tools/adsense-sandbox/ (This will give you an idea of what ads will be displayed on your Web site before you place them.)
16. Google Page Rank Calculator – http://www.webworkshop.net/pagerank_calculator.php (This is an advanced tool for finding out what you need to get your PR to the next level.)
18. Page Rank Finder – http://www.seo-guy.com/seo-tools/google-pr.php (This is a great tool to find quality Web sites with good PR for Web site exchange. This tool only looks at the homepage not the link pages. This tool looks at 10 pages or 100 results.)
19. Future Google PR – http://www.searchengineforums.com/ – This is an article that tells you what data center your Google PR is updated on first.
20. Keyword Analysis Tool – http://www.mcdar.net/ – This tool is a must. It’s quick and easy to use.
21. Keyword Density Analyzer – http://www.webjectives.com/keyword.htm
22. Keyword Difficulty Checker – http://www.searchguild.com/cgi-bin/difficulty.pl (You will need a Google API for this one.)
23. Free Google API – http://www.google.com/api
24. Rocket Rank – http://www.rocketrank.com/ – This will only check the top 20 of the following SE’s: ” All The Web,” “DMOZ,” “AltaVista,” “Overture,” “Excite,” “Web Crawler,” “HotBot,” ” Lycos,” “What U Seek,” “Yahoo!”

Keyword Suggestion Tools

1. WordTracker & Overture Suggestions http://www.digitalpoint.com/tools/suggestion/ – This is the best one of the three.
2. AdWords Suggestion – https://adwords.google.com/
3. Link Analyzer – http://www.scribbling.net/analyze-web-page-links – Analyze the ratio of internal links vs. external links. This is a good tool when determining page rank leakage.
4. Link Appeal – http://www.webmaster-toolkit.com/link-appeal.shtml (Want to know whether or not you actually want your link on that page?)
5. Link City – http://showcase.netins.net/web/phdss/linkcity/ (This place has EVERY tool under the sun for everything you could ever possibly want.)
6. Link Reputation – http://198.68.180.60/cgi-bin/link-reputation-tool.cgi (Reveals back links pointing to the target URL, along with a link survey for each back link.)
7. Google PR Tools – http://www.thinkbling.com/tools.php (This guy has tons of fantastic tools. He is not as popular as some of the rest, but the tools are great.)
8. Protect Your E-mail Address – http://www.fingerlakesbmw.org/main/flobfuscate.php (Obfuscates your e-mail so spambots don’t pick it up from the Internet.)
9. Digital Points Ad Network – http://www.digitalpoint.com/tools/ad-network/?s=2197 – This is best for use after using all of the tools and more on this page. This has helped out the rankings faster than anything else.
10. Sandbox Detection Tool – http://www.socengine.com/seo/tools/sandbox-tool.php – Is your Web site being sandboxed?
11. Spider Simulation – http://www.submitexpress.com/analyzer/ – See what the spider sees on your Web site.
12. SEO-Toys – http://seo-toys.com/ – These are some things that I had in my favorites. Some of them are okay.
13. Multiple SEO Tools – http://www.free-seo-tools.com/ – This Web site has a variety of misc. tools that you can use to better your search engine rankings.
14. Bot Spotter – http://sourceforge.net/projects/botspotter – This is a phenomenal script that will track what bots hit your Web site at what times (runs on PHP enabled Web sites).
15. Net Mechanic – http://www.netmechanic.com/toolbox/power_user.htm – This will break your Web site down and alert you of any errors of which you may be unaware.
16. Stat counter – http://www.statcounter.com/ – This will track your clients throughout the dynamically created pages of your Web site. This is a free service.
17. Dr. HTML – http://www.fixingyourwebsite.com/drhtml.html – This will test your Web site for any errors and tell you how to fix them.
18. Page Rank Calculation – http://www.sitepronews.com/pagerank.html

Newsletters and Articles

1. Site Pro News – www.sitepronews.com
2. In Stat – http://www.instat.com/ (This offers some decent insights)
3. Page Rank Explained – http://www.webworkshop.net/
4. Search Engine Ratings and Reviews – http://searchenginewatch.com/reports/
5. Database of Robots – http://www.robotstxt.org/wc/active/html/index.html
(Ever wondered about the spiders that are out there?)

ISAPI Rewrites

1. URL “Replacer” – (Free) – http://www.motobit.com/help/
2. Mod Rewrite2 – ($39.90US) – http://www.iismods.com/url-rewrite/index.htm
3. URL Rewrite – ($23 EUR) – http://www.smalig.com/url_rewrite-en.htm

Link Exchange

1. Links Manager ($20 US /mo)- http://linksmanager.com/cgi-bin/cook/control_panel.cgi (This is great for the beginner; however, you will need to make major adjustments to your pages manually in order to ensure “PR” page rank throughout. Otherwise, you will end up with 20 pages with no PR and one page with some kind of PR.)
2. Page Rank Finder – http://www.seo-guy.com/seo-tools/google-pr.php
3. Link Appeal – http://www.webmaster-toolkit.com/link-appeal.shtml

Search Engine Submissions

1. Submit Express – http://www.submitexpress.com/newsletters/dec_15_00.html (A lot of people utilize this service. I don’t)
2. Alexa – http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/
3. AOL – http://search.aol.com/aolcom/add.jsp
4. DMOZ Dummies Guide – http://www.dummies-guide-to-dmoz.org
5. DMOZ Instructions – http://dmoz.org/add.html
6. DMOZ Resource Forum – http://resource-zone.com/forum/showthread.php?t=396 (This is where you go when your Web site doesn’t show up in DMOZ after you have submitted; Make sure to read the rule on how to request information).
7. ExactSeek – http://www.exactseek.com/freemember.html
8. Google – http://www.google.com/addurl.html
9. Yahoo! http://submit.search.yahoo.com/free/request (You must have an account).
10. Yahoo! Directory Help – http://docs.yahoo.com/info/suggest/appropriate.html
11. Yahoo! Express Submit TOS – https://ecom.yahoo.com/dir/express/terms
12. Yahoo! Submit Help – http://help.yahoo.com/help/us/dir/su…uggest-01.html
13. MSN – http://beta.search.msn.com/docs/submit.aspx?

Miscellaneous

1. FEED Validator (http://www.feedvalidator.org/) – For Atom and RSS.
2. W3C Markup Validation Service (http://validator.w3.org/) – Check for conformance to W3C Recommendations and other standards.
3. Kontera Ads Preview (http://www.webconfs.com/kontera-preview-tool.php) – Preview Kontera Ads on your Web site.
4. Online spell checker (http://www.markhorrell.com/tools/spellcheck.asp) – Simple online spell checking tools.
5. Browser Screen Resolution Checker (http://www.markhorrell.com/tools/browser.shtml) – Shows what your site looks like with different screen resolutions.
6. Your Browser Details (http://www.iwebtool.com/browser_details) – View your IP address and your browser details.
7. Anonymous Emailer (http://www.iwebtool.comURLnonymous_emailer) – Send e-mails to users anonymously.
8. MD5 Encrypt (http://www.iwebtool.com/md5) – Encrypt text to MD5.
9. Online Calculator (http://www.iwebtool.com/online_calculator) – A simple online calculator.
10. ALink Reciprocal Link Checker (http://www.info-pack.com/alink/)
11. AMeta Meta Tag Editor (http://www.info-pack.com/ameta/)
12. XML Site map Maker (http://www.xmlsitemapmaker.com/)
13. RSS Feed Maker (http://www.rssfeedmaker.biz/)
14. Web Page Size Checker (http://www.info-pack.com/pagesize/)

These resources are for you to use as the need arises. Do not spend too much time trying to understand and compare all these at once. They are tools and should be used as such.

I suggest that you create a spreadsheet and, as you check some of these resources, give each one with your own comments or rating. Doing this will pay off in the long run and it will help you remember what to do by providing you with a quick reference of each service.

To get the complete manuscript go to www.planyourinternetsuccess.com

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Plan Your Internet Success – Part 23: Lead Generations, Sales Referral and the Search for Higher Payout


23. Lead Generations, Sales Referral and the Search for Higher Payout

Once you have optimized your Web site and other Web pages you will be able to create “action pages.”

These action pages are critical because they are the most difficult pages to get visitors to go to and probably the pages with the most drop-out. Typical examples of this page include:

a) A page where a banner or text invites visitors to click, and be taken to an online store where they will be able to buy something. In exchange for this you, the affiliate, will get a commission.

b) A product link and shopping cart allowing the affiliate (or advertiser) to sell his or her product. This is done in order to better manage visitors’ requests and offer exactly what they are looking for as opposed to a simple company banner. This can come as a “product feed” and is delivered to your site in many ways and allows you to “keep” your visitors within your site until they click on “check out.”

c) A “registration page” that you host on your Web site (it is pulled from another Web site, in some instances) and where visitors provide information in exchange for getting something such as a newsletter, updates, offers, software, gifts, incentives, etc.

Those are three examples of action pages and we are going to explore in greater detail below each of the options.

Option a) – In this instance, the goal is to complement the content of a Web site with ads (text, banner, etc.) or simple text links that are relevant (in context) with the topic covered and that will generate clicks. The hope here is that some of these clicks will generate sales or actions at an advertiser’s Web site that will convert into a commission or a payment to you upon completion by the visitor of a required action (lead, email submit, etc.). This is probably the easiest way to set up revenue streams for a Web entrepreneur, since banners and text ads are available in great numbers and from many affiliate marketing network or company programs. Lists of networks are available from http://www.affiliate-marketing-solution.com.

However, these types of links are by far the least interesting options, and the reasons for this are simple. As soon as one of your visitors clicks on a banner on one of your pages, you have no idea what happens to this person. He or she may land on an outdated or old page of an advertiser, or worse, get an error from the network indicating that the advertiser has been de-activated.

But even if this person lands on the advertiser or merchant’s Web site, you have no control over how well this store is designed, how fast it will display the merchandise advertised or how well it performs. It may be a very slow Web site that takes forever to load pages, or that has a horribly complicated shopping cart. If so, your visitors will drop out and you will lose any hope of getting a commission.

Additionally, some online merchants have been known to be somewhat reluctant at paying commissions and unless you work with a reputable merchant or affiliate network like CJ or Linkshare, you may be in for a surprise.

Advertisers or merchants may only pay commissions for the first time buyer, so if someone comes back through your Web site and orders something again, you will not get any commission.

Finally, while your visitors may actually go through your site to an online store, make a purchase and the commission is credited, you may end up getting nothing because some smart affiliate has placed an affiliate cookie on your visitor’s computer that override yours when the visitor reach the “Thank You” page. Cookie hijacking is supposed to have been eradicated, but I saw an example of this not so long ago, so beware.


Option b) – In this approach, while the concept is similar to option a), the affiliate features the product that this advertiser or merchant sells on his Web site.

This is accomplished in a number of ways and the easiest include a short code snippet that you put on your page which “pulls” the product that is offered from this merchant onto your Web page.

The advantage over banners and text ads is that you show merchandise and you control how the merchandise is found by a visitor and to a lesser degree how it is displayed. I say “to a lesser degree” because the customization provided by the advertiser may be limited to specific colors and size as well as displays. Regardless, this is a great advantage when compared to banner and text ads, since it shows specific products.

As a result, the risk of losing a visitor is somewhat minimized. Alternatively, problems may still arise when visitors click on products and are taken to the shopping cart of an advertiser that may have a totally different look and feel (to say nothing of domain name).

Option c) – In this instance, you are (to some degree) master of your destiny and can manage how and what your visitors will see throughout their experience on your Web site.

The goal here is to have a registration page where the visitor gives you permission to pass on his or her information to a third party. The benefits are tremendous since you not only will pass on this information but, more importantly, you will retain this information as well for your own usage.

A few notes of warning:

If you pass on your visitor (client) information to a company that will turn around and sell it to anyone ready to pay a few pennies, this e-mail address soon will be burnt and unusable for any future offers that you may want to send. Some companies don’t care for this approach, since they estimate that they can squeeze the maximum amount of money on someone’s information within the first few days of acquiring this information. However, the trend today is in acquiring quality leads (and I personally believe that this is the right approach) in order to monetize a customer over much longer periods of time.

As a result, I would highly recommend that you provide leads knowing how this lead will be used and if it will be re-sold or shared with others and to check to ensure that your trust is not being abused.

By the way, if you do what is called a co-registration, you will need some programming skills or assistance to capture users’ information and pass it on to the company with whom you share this visitor’s registration. Co-registration is the typical form that you see on, for example, an educational Web site or job board and which offers to provide you with information on various online universities. Users fill out the information and click the submit button, but stay on the same Web site.
In the background, code has been created to capture this information and send it to the online university you selected either in real time or via timed batches. This is a lead, and in this example, the job board receives a payment.

Again the beauty of option c) is to allow you to 1) control the environment at all times, 2) capture your visitor’s information and 3) keep your visitor within your Web site.

Finally, be careful of incentives, such as freebies for your visitor if he/she clicks on an offer of fill out a form, since many advertisers do not allow incentivized offers.

In conclusion, while the lead is the best option, as far as I am concerned, all three options should be used depending on how your Web site is laid out and what you are trying to do within each page. As a matter of fact, you should consider these options even if you are an advertiser and only offer products or services on your Web site. However, when and where these are used is critical.

When Web pages are content-oriented and include information about specific products, you should include links to that product within your Web site or, if need be, to another advertiser’s page (always try to keep your visitors on your Web site, though). You may want to include banners for offers that are relevant or complement your own offers. That approach is also fine, but keep in mind that it costs you to bring visitors to your Web site and you do not want to send them away for a few pennies.

No matter what, you should always have a form for your visitors to fill out. This form may be associated with an offer of an online degree or simply to receive your newsletter, email, etc. Regardless of what it is, provide this option on as many pages as you can (and, if possible, on all pages).

To read the complete manuscript and download a free version go to www.planyourinternetsuccess.com

Plan Your Internet Success – Part 10: Write a Press Release and Distribute


10. Write a Press Release and Distribute

As a matter of principle, I believe that you simply cannot launch a business or Web site– let alone both — without broadcasting it as loud as possible. One of the best ways to do this is via press releases.

A press release packs tremendous power in the age of super-fast communication and the Internet, since it crosses the boundaries of traditional and new media very “naturally.”  Press release teasers and story clips are the umbilical cord of many news organizations that are understaffed and depend upon information from the outside world.

However, the sheer number of press releases and teasers that are distributed daily makes it imperative to have something that stands out and catches the readers’ attention.  After all, this job is given to junior members or trainees who are asked to scan hundreds of submissions and have a limited time to do this.

As a result, when writing (or contracting for the writing of) a press release, you must keep in mind that you have very little time to capture your reader’s imagination.  I estimate that you have the attention of the reader for the length of the subject line, and if you have a great subject line, one or two sentences past that.

No matter what, you must write one or more press releases about your site, as well as what I call teasers, or short announcements that highlight everything that is great about your site, your product, and your business, in a very concise way. The press release itself will be longer with more details, a few quotes, etc. My approach is to send the teaser first and then send the press release. This is a trick of the trade that I learned in testing some different approaches, and it works well if done properly and within the right time frame.

Regardless, a press release should have detailed information on your product, any aspects of your business and anything that could be interesting to a reader.  Above all, the writing should be sharp and entertaining.

Finally, make sure that you have a link to your Web site on the press release. It should mention the name of your business, and also include your URL and a link to your home page.

Press releases are submitted via organizations such as PRWeb but, more importantly, they should be distributed to the media (newspaper, magazines, radio, TV, Internet, etc.) directly. This is, after all, the objective of press release beyond “silly” reasons, such as SEO.

Finally, post your press release on your Web site and link it to your index page or prominent page via a “press” or “in the news” button.

Resources:

http://www.prweb.com

http://www.clickpress.com

http://www.webwire.com/

http://www.emediawire.com

http://www.businesswire.com

http://www.prwebdirect.com

http://www.theopenpress.com

http://www.free-press-release.com

http://www.pressbox.co.uk

http://www.i-newswire.com/

http://www.pr9.net

http://www.pr-inside.com

http://www.newswire.ca/

http://www.pressreleasenetwork.com

http://www.marketwire.com

http://www.urlwire.com/

http://www.prurgent.com

http://www.prleap.com

http://www.prnewswire.com

http://www.prfree.com/

http://www.openpress.com/

http://www.softpressrelease.com

If there is only one thing that you do after launching a Web site, it sould be the publishing of a press release across the Internet and directly to newspapers and magazines that specialize in your space.

While there are no guarantees that it will pay off, this is by far the most effective and inexpensive way to get noticed.

As usual if you are impatient and want to download the full manuscript you can do that at jtouboul.com

What About Business Plan and Funding


At this juncture some people ask me about creating a full business plan to get a complete “picture” of what is needed to succeed.  My approach is simple. If you plan (or need) to raise capital to launch your venture then, absolutely, you will need a full Business Plan (and, as a matter of fact, much more).

However if you want to launch a web venture that you will keep relatively small-scale until you see how it “respond” to your initial marketing campaign, then I do not recommend that you spend the time needed to develop a full-scale Business Plan.  After all a complete business plan will probably run 50-75 pages and will take considerable time and research to accomplish.

Is this something that you want to do at this early stage? Possibly, but I would not recommend it unless you absolutely need funds to launch your business, and considering the state of funding in this country today, you better have a very unique idea that will show revenues very quickly.

My approach is that unless you need very complex programing and marketing expenditures that will cost you a bundle spend your time focusing on creating a small-scale business and growing it until such time when it has some clients and some revenues.  Then your chances to succeed in raising capital will be greatly improved.  Trust me on that one, I’ve been trying to raise capital for a start-up for several months and even though I bring quite a bit of experience in this field it hasn’t help.  Bottom line is that, today, the climate is not good for an early stage ventures.  Investors are still hanging on to their money and want to see revenues before considering if they should invest or not.

Finally, creating a complete Business Plans and raising capital is something that I cover during the group and one-on-one sessions since these are very personal and very intensive processes that require a lot of attention and take quite a bit or research and time.

In conclusion I did not overlook full-blown Business Plans or Fund Raising.  Rather, in this manual, my only goal is to give entrepreneurs what I consider to be the absolute minimum they will need to do in order to insure their success on the Net.  And this starts by rolling your sleeves and getting down to proving your concept and make it work, be it a small scale one.

Coming up Saturday Part 5: Choose your Domain Name

You can also read the entire document “Plan Your Internet Success” on my web site at jtouboul.com

Plan Your Internet Success – Part 3 – Research Your Competition and Learn


3. Research your Competition and Learn

The best and easiest way to do this is search through Google, Bing, and Yahoo! or via directories for competitors using the keywords that you found. Take a look at the companies listed on the first two pages, including those found in the sponsor boxes. Review what they do well and not so well, including the “look and feel,” presentation, style, content, navigation, etc.  Make a checklist of what to do to improve or what not to do when you come across competitors that are not doing it right. Print out the pages of the ones that you find interesting and make notes that will help you remember why you liked the pages or what you did not like.

See how they rank by using services like Quantcast (http://www.quantcast.com/) to measure their success on the Net. If you are checking ranking with Alexa, be very careful since Alexa can be skewed very easily and may not reflect reality.

Another simple way to do this is to input the company’s URL on Google or Yahoo! and check the number of links they show; remember, the more, the better. Keep these links in mind for later and make a note of the sites that have the most. These Web sites may be businesses with which you may want to have your own links as you get established.

Resources: Search:

http://www.Google.com

http://www.Bing.com

http://www.Yahoo.com

Resources – Business:

http://www.hoovers.com/free/

http://www.ryze.com/postaddprocess.php

http://www.corptech.com/

http://www.digitallook.com/

http://online.wsj.com/public/page/news-small-business-marketing.html

Finally, never underestimate your competition, especially on the Internet. You have no idea what their resources may be and how well they can reach their target audience, no matter how trivial their copy, or how poor their Web site may look to you.

The complete manuscript is available at http://www.jtouboul.com