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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Search Engine Marketing aka SEM (Tool 5)

In the previous tool of online marketing i.e. Search Engine Optimization, we learned that the process of optimizing a site is based on:

Content:
Image and media, widgets and tool, resource lists, testimonials, translations, comments, RSS feeds, articles, blogs and titles.

Links:
Directory submission, partners / suppliers, reciprocal links, press release, memberships, social media, advertising, comments, contests and news.

Site Architecture:
Hosting, DNS, geo-location, domain, URL structure, web design and standards, usability and analytics.

However, if you are intending to take part in in the online marketing arena, it is important to that you must be aware of how to bring search engine marketing into play too for domino effect. As today, we are living in such a world where we use internet on daily basis to find things of our desire and prefer to do a research online rather than going to a store and having a dialogue with pushy sellers.

If you are a merchant then probably, SEM is one of the best ways for you to target your market online. However, a question arises here, how search engine marketing vary from search engine optimization. The important factors of search engine marketing are:

Creativity in Ads:
Ads are useless if there is no creativity in them no matter whether it is contextual advertising, banner ads or a video ad, in order to generate sales the ad must be creative enough that it grabs the attention of a visitor at a glance and make them click on it.

We use contextual advertising, text links, banners ads, rich media and buzz marketing is search engine marketing, which are keywords optimized and based on seasonality and segmentation.

Placement of Ads:
Placement of an ad is the most important factor in the search engine marketing. Mostly, ads are placed in the Meta search engines, second tier search, search engines, directories, websites, affiliates, and blogs. However, before placing an ad you must carry out a price comparison of the sites.

If you are a small business owner, it is necessary for you to allocate a budget for your online marketing activities through measuring the ROI with the help of analytics but make sure that your customer support infrastructure should be strong enough to serve each customer at the best level of satisfaction.

Keep proper checks on conversion rate of the traffic you are receiving through your search engine marketing campaign because if there is traffic but it is not converting then probably there is some problem that you need to figure out real fast in order to generate good results.

In a word, search engine marketing is a key skill for all online marketers to learn. On the other hand, this is for sure that once you have well-read all the rules of the game, your business will never be the same.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Search Engine Optimization aka SEO (Tool 4)

The art of making a website friendly enough so that it ranks higher in Search Engine Result Pages is known as search engine optimization. It is considered more technical part of internet marketing, which is true. SEO requires some technical knowledge related to HTML, CSS etc. along with copy writing as most of the techniques used to promote site in the search engine deals with the text.

The whole process of search engine optimization is broken and carried out in two phases, which are known as on page and off page optimization.

On Page Factors                                                       Off Page Factors

• Keyword mining                                                       • Free / paid directory submission
• Keyword density checks                                          • Article and news submission
• Credible copy writing                                               • Press release distribution
• Meta tags scripting                                                   • Reciprocal link marketing
• Clean and valid mark-up (HTML)                            • Inbound link building
• Link management                                                     • Digital signatures


15 Biggest and Frequent Mistakes of SEO made by Web Masters

The below listed are the most biggest and frequently made mistakes by web masters, which could cost you both money and time.

1. Duplicate Content: it is the worst enemy of your website and might just keep your site from not being found in the search engines. Search engines love well-written, original content and penalize such sites, which contains plagiarized contents. Therefore, if you think that you are not good at writing content, I suggest you should hire a writer, it may be worth hiring one to take care of this aspect of your site for you.

2. Using Auto generated content: High quality, original content is King. Auto generated content is neither.

3. Cloaking - avoid use of doorway pages.

4. Over submission of site to the Search Engines.

5. Less or no keywords in H1 headings.

6. Use of unrelated keywords/ no use of keyword phrases (long tail keywords).

7. Bad selection of Anchor text links: make sure that the anchor text link you are getting should be targeting high quality long tail keywords, well researched and target high search volume with low competition in order to get your website rank higher.

8. Links from irrelevant sites: If you get back links too fast through link farming or other methods, your rankings may decrease. So, avoid paid links especially from irrelevant sites.

9. Keyword stuffing: Over usage of keywords within your content can also hurt your site badly. The best practice is to use your main keyword once per eighty to hundred words.

10. Do not provide Irrelevant Outbound Links. Always keep your outgoing links relevant and use strong, keyword based anchor text whenever it is possible.

11. Poor Page Title: create a keyword based unique title of every individual page on your site.

12. Bad code Programming: Be sure your code is clean, easy to read, and optimized for SEO wherever possible.

13. Hidden Text: Do not use hidden keywords on your website as if your keywords are hard to find, then they are more likely hard to recognize and read too. Make them apparent and a strong part of your website for finest results.

14. Deficiency of focusing on a niche in a website: the reason is that if your website is not targeting a specific niche then it will become difficult for a search engine to group your site and to know which niche you suit best.

15. No or less focus on visitors as compared to search engines: Always keep your focus on visitors while creating a content as they are the one who will be reading and linking to your, distributing it or purchasing your product or services.

Try to avoid the above mentioned mistakes while optimizing your site or else it could harm you by means of cost and time both. We will cover some more tips on search engine optimization within the next tool.