the internet ideas blog

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Little Advice from Eliot

What are the words of today? 
"Last year's words belong to last year's language And next year's words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning"-Eliot

That one line, written long ago, is so appropriate when considering the words you choose to market your website to search engines.

Our culture is ever evolving. What was once a bandage became band-aid, a brand name that is now the household word for a bandage. What was once only an automobile is now more commonly referred to as a car. The same concept holds true every day of our lives. Our language is modified to include shorter words for the same things, slang that becomes common language, and brands that become household words, think "I 'googled' it," which is now included in Webster's dictionary.

This doesn't even include the shortened words used in texting and tweeting.

So when you think you've got all the right terms in place, think again. This is yet another way that search engine marketing is never "set it and forget it." Instead it's best to renew the keyword research at least yearly to assure that your site is keeping up with the evolution of our language.

Monday, December 29, 2008

If their titles, descriptions & keywords put them on top . . .

Want to be on the top of search results?
. . . then why don't I come up on top when I use the same words and similar description?

This was the question posed to me the other day by Maria during a consultation. Since many of you probably have the same question, I thought I would share the answer.

If search engine marketing were as easy as "follow the leader," there were would be thousands, if not millions, that should be "on top." There is only one top slot and someone has to be next.

Because of this, title tags, descriptions and keywords are only a part of what makes a website gain high rankings. There are many, many factors that influence how your site is ranked like these:
  • the age of the domain name and related site
  • the popularity of the website based upon the number of inbound links
  • the popularity of interior pages of the site
  • the actual content on the page that serves the visitors
  • the words used to link to your site from the outside
  • the alternative text used with images and links
  • the uniquely written (non-duplicated), quality content
and many more items that, alone, seem insignificant, but when used as part of the overall picture they all contribute to achieving high rankings for a variety of terms within your site.

On a local level, you may have so many competitors that have been online longer it may seem impossible to get your local business to come up on top.   This is especially frustrating when dealing with Google and their local mapping interface.  One way to get ahead in the local market (and overall) is to become great at social marketing.  Google in particular has made it quite clear that they value social interactions on their social site: Google+.

If you've got a question you would like to have answered in this forum, please feel free to email me:

Sunday, December 21, 2008


What's in it for me? 
I was reading "Made to Stick*" yesterday evening and came across an interesting "word" - WIIFY (pronounced "whiff-y") which stands for "What's In It For You." Great question! WIIFY is what you may think every time you are looking at buying new products or enlisting new services.

If every website was written for the visitor, answering the WIIFY question, a lot more people would be doing business online. Sadly, most websites are written touting the features, laudes and history neglecting the all important benefits oriented approach. Even more so, sites should show the benefit of the benefits as well. For example: This time tracking software will help you be more accurate when billing a client (benefit) , which will translate into more revenues because you won't miss a minute (benefit of the benefit).

This may seem like explaining the obvious but remember that the best way to get conversions on the internet is to tell visitors what you want them to do and make it easy for your visitors to take that action. It stands to reason then, that further explaining the benefit of the benefits will help visitors connect the dots quickly and easily, further increasing the appeal of your product or service.

So along with all the other things an ideal website should be, add WIIFY to your list!

Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die," by Chip & Dan Heath. It can be purchased online at - my favorite bookstore.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Manners Anyone?

It's not uncommon for website managers to inadvertently shun visitors with, what may look like, a fairly benign website.

For example, do you use forms that ask a multitude of possibly invasive questions? Keep to the basics and you'll find better conversions. And, if what you have to offer is appealing, they will most likely give you more information at a later point in the process.

Are you using ALL CAPS when trying to communicate your message? Keep in mind that writing in caps is the equivalent of yelling and should be done sparingly. Along these same lines, use visitor friendly phrases, avoid telling people what they "must do," instead offer options.

What about your sign up or check out process? Have you taken the forethought to explain why the information is needed and to have a solid privacy policy easily accessible to your visitors?

Although the web can be cold and impersonal, using kind and helpful words will go a long way.
The best way to determine if your site has a friendly approach to visitors, ask people outside your organization to take a look and give feedback. You may be surprised at what you can learn.
Powered by Blogger.

from our blog


internet marketing articles