Traffic Generation Archives

Why You Should Use Traffic Exchanges

viral-marketing-social-media-phoenix-150x150As we all know, traffic is the fuel that drives all commercial activity on the Internet. Without traffic, even the most modern and beautifully designed website will eventually wither away and die. This is why traffic generation has to be your #1 concern as an Internet entrepreneur!

Today I want to discuss traffic exchanges as a means of traffic generation. There are thousands of them all over the web, and more are popping up every day. A lot of people put them down as useless and time-wasting, but in my experience not all of them are. The main thing you need to keep in mind when dealing with traffic exchanges is that they  should be just one more element in a much greater traffic generation strategy, and not the strategy in itself.

Traffic exchanges are just that…The basic principle at play is that if you agree to take a decent look at my website, I will take a decent look at yours. Depending on the specific traffic exchange and the offer you are promoting, this can bring good results for you. I have found attractive marketing programs and services in traffic exchanges that I use to this day with good results!

Most traffic exchanges are free to join, and many of them offer affordable options to advertise your offer to all of their members. You will generally receive a guarantee that your website will be viewed every time you view someone else’s site. The method by which traffic exchanges allow you to build up credit is called “surfing”, and consists of spending about 10 to 15 seconds on each member’s site viewing their offer. In return, your website will be placed on the viewing queue for others to visit in the same manner.

You can also earn credit by bringing others into the exchange and building a downline. When you are dealing with a good traffic exchange this can create a viral effect, and truly multiply the traffic to each website in the queue exponentially, (but again, in my experience, this doesn’t happen with every exchange, though). That’s why you have to be selective about which traffic exchanges you decide to invest time and effort in.

The important thing here is to keep in mind that the other people “surfing” the exchange are doing the same thing you are doing, which is trying to increase exposure to their offer. They will not necessarily be in buying mode at the time, and are trying to generate leads and maybe grow their mailing list with an eye on the future. That is why you should not use traffic exchanges with the intent of generating sales, (though this can happen from time to time, especially if you are promoting a traffic generation product, or a product/service that can aid other members in marketing their offers).

The traffic exchanges that I have gotten good results from and recommend are these:

  1. TopSurfer.com
  2. TrafficHoopla.com

Since more and more exchanges are coming online every day this list may eventually grow, but as of right now these are the exchanges that are working for me. I would suggest to you that spending the time setting accounts up with them is worth the effort, because in the quest for traffic generation no stone should be left unturned!

 

5 SEO Tips To Help You Get More Traffic

Top-10-SEO-Tricks-150x150Search Engine Optimization is still the Holy Grail of web marketing. That becomes increasingly true as other traffic generation methods lose strength or fall by the wayside altogether. Every business that has an online presence needs SEO, but few implement it successfully.

Algorithms, (those mysterious and pesky formulas that Google and other search engines use to sort and classify content), have been changing drastically as of late, and that means that our SEO efforts need to change and adapt accordingly.

While there is no magic trick to achieving great SEO for your business, here are a few tips to help you become successful in your quest. If you implement these tactics you will stand a much better chance of increasing the number of visitors to your websites.

  1. Content is still KING. Content matters. It really, REALLY does, now more than ever. If you want to be an SEO star, you need to make sure your website has quality content, and a LOT of it! And that content must be updated regularly if you deal with topics that tend to change frequently. Nothing kills SEO faster than stale content that has not been updated in more than a month or so.  Keep current with your content and keep up the quality. If you can’t write using good grammar and proper syntax you may want to consider hiring a freelance writer to write content for you. There are many of them all over the Internet who offer this service at reasonable rates.
  2. Keywords matter. Keywords are still important, but you have to realize that they are not the only game in town. There are tools such as Google Analytics that can help you identify top keywords in your business category, and turn those keywords into strong content…(There we go with content again…It is THAT important!).
  3. Looks matter too. The way in which your page is laid out impacts SEO…(Who knew??) Use bullet points and hyperlinks that include your top keywords. Judicious use of bold and italicized copy also helps provide visual interest and drive those SEO numbers.
  4. Images and videos. Photos and videos help drive interest and engagement with your web page. Create strong titles for both photos and videos using your keywords, and be sure to tag them with keywords as well.
  5. Measure your success. How can you tell that what you’re doing is working? You measure, measure, and measure again! Keep an eye on your performance. A tool like Google Analytics can really help here. A weekly look at performance allows you to gauge which efforts are driving visibility and which are just not delivering results. Once you have a clear picture of performance, you can make informed tweaks to content and keyword usage to further increase SEO. Just keep in mind that you don’t need to change things every time a new number comes in, because what you want to look for is trends. Knee-jerk reactions can cause big problems!

While there is no one-size-fits-all solution for SEO, following these tips should help you get your website to a good position in the search engines and keep it there. The key to success is to create a strong and solid website and continue to update it with content that inspires, engages, and keeps people coming back (and searching) for more!

Tread Lightly When Using PLR Articles!

 

Ever since blogging became the preferred method to generate website traffic, PLR (Private Label Rights) articles have become very popular among Internet marketers, but I think they do more harm than good, and I’ll tell you why.

A PLR article starts life as a piece written by someone looking to sell it along with a license known as “private label rights”. This license actually gives the buyer the right to do things like give the article away, re-sell it, use it as content for blogs or Ebooks, and even to rebrand it and claim authorship of it.

The basic idea involved is for bloggers to get a bunch of these articles, upload them to their blog, and watch the traffic skyrocket as Google indexes their content and links/backlinks are created. Pretty nifty, right?

BUT, here’s the problem: Most of the PLR articles that are available for purchase all over the web have been sold and resold thousands of times, and this has resulted in hundreds, (if not thousands), of blogs and websites featuring the same exact content.

Google HATES this!

As we all know, Google is the big kid on the block when it comes to indexing the Internet, and it is the most used search engine in the world. Google has been altering its indexing algorithm lately, and going through phases they have assigned cute little names to, like Panda and Penguin.

The result of these alterations to Google’s algorithm is that now the only sites that will get indexed in such a way as to achieve high page rankings are the sites that feature original content. When the last algorithm alteration took place earlier this year we saw thousands of websites crash and burn because of this new circumstance!

Now, I’ve got to point out that PLR articles can still be used, but they have become impractical. This is because you have to re-write them and change them drastically before posting them to your blog, so you won’t run the risk of Google recognizing them as old content and dinging you for it with a low ranking.

In view of that situation, I’ve reached a personal conclusion: If I am going to have to spend time re-writing badly written (and sometimes expensive) PLR articles that come with poor syntax and bad grammar, I might as well spend that time writing my own content properly.

This way I won’t have to spend a dime, and Google will like me and my website much better for it!

The Mechanics of Search Engine Optimization

In today’s net-savvy world it has become the norm for businesses to have websites that they use to widen their exposure and advertise their products and services. Conversely, search engines make it very easy for potential customers to search for the products and services they need online.

For a website to be successful, its link should land in the first three pages of the search engine, which should result in many visitors visiting the site. This can be achieved by implementing some search engine optimization on your website, which is popularly known as SEO. I thought I would explore the mechanics of SEO today in order to give you a better idea of how the process works.

SEO not only affects the search engine results, but also image search, video search and industry-specific vertical search engines. It determines how a search algorithm functions and searches what is popular with people. When a website link is submitted to a search engine, a special software robot called web crawler or web spider crawls through the site’s pages to gather links, which lead to other pages in the site. Those pages are then stored on the server of the search engine.

The information collected from these pages is sent to the indexer. The indexer’s job is to extract information from the stored pages, (such as the keywords and their weights, the location of the page, and other links that are stored for the web spider to crawl through in the future).

In the beginning, the search engine optimizing algorithms were dependent on the keywords and other technical information provided by the Webmaster. The use of keywords was and remains an integral part of success, but the other technical information didn’t prove to be useful, because some Webmasters added irrelevant elements to it in order to increase the number of hits and earn huge ad revenue. They even changed the HTML code of the web pages in order to achieve a good rank for the page, but these were instances of abuse that often resulted in the fetching of irrelevant pages.

Search engines then began utilizing complex ranking algorithms, which were difficult for the webmasters to manipulate so as to provide web surfers with genuine results. The rank of the web page was calculated mathematically by functions using strength and quantity of the inbound links. The higher the rank of the page, the more chances it had to be viewed by a person.

Later algorithms were developed which considered various other on-page factors such as rank and off-page factors such as hyperlinks. Since the webmasters couldn’t manipulate the page rank, they began exchanging and selling and buying links, which led to link spamming and even creation of numerous sites dedicated for this purpose.

Algorithms became more complex every passing day, and top search engines kept their algorithms a secret. As the cost of SEO increased, advertisers were roped in to pay for it, and that finally resulted in high quality web pages.

Although investing in SEO is potentially very fruitful it can also be quite risky, because without any prior notice the algorithms being used are bound to change and the search engine will stop directing visitors to the page. Many consultants are available in the market that provides SEO services. They manipulate the HTML source code in websites, affecting menus, shopping carts and sometimes even the content of the website to draw more traffic.

Search engines like Yahoo have algorithms that extract pages not according to the page rank, but according to the cost per click or set fee. If an advertiser desires for the page containing his ad to be displayed, he is expected to pay money for it. This is a point of controversy, as in many cases only the big businesses are fully able to increase the number of hits of their page using this method, but not the small businesses that might have a better quality page but a very small advertising budget.

Now that I’ve shared all that info with you, I must tell you to proceed with great caution when dealing with SEO service providers. SEO can be great for your online presence if you do your due diligence and deal with the right expert, but it can eat up your budget very quickly if you don’t, without any meaningful results…PROCEED WISELY!

Pay-Per-Click Advertising: How to make your business “CLICK”!

PPC stands for Pay Per Click – a popular advertising technique on the Internet. Found on websites, advertising networks, and especially on search engines, PPC advertising involves sponsored links that are typically in the form of text ads. These are usually placed close to search results, where an advertiser pays a particular amount to visitors who click on these links or banners and land on the advertiser’s web page.

In essence, PPC advertising is all about bidding for the top or leading position on search engine results and listings. Advertisers do this by buying or bidding on keyword phrases that are relevant to their products or services – the higher the bid, the higher the spot on the search results, the more the people will find the ad (and click on it) to go to their websites (this is why some people call it “keyword auctioning”). Advertisers would then pay the bidding price every time a visitor clicks through the website.

PPC advertising is also known under the following names/variations:

·    Pay per placement
·    Pay per performance
·    Pay per ranking
·    Pay per position
·    Cost per click (CPC)

PPC advertising is usually done with the following standard procedures:

1. Setting up an account and/or deposit funds.

2. Creating a keyword list.

3. Choosing (and setting up) an account with a PPC search engine.

4. Bidding on the ad placement, including the search result words or phrases.

5. Writing out an ad copy.

6. Setting up the ‘landing pages’ for your ads.

7. Placing the advertisement in the search engine.

There are many benefits to Pay Per Click advertising, making it an effective way of promoting a business ‘online’. Some of them are listed below:

·    Get launched immediately. PPC advertisements are implemented very quickly – they can go ‘online’ within an hour after winning the bid and paying for it.

·    Obtain specific, pre-qualified, and quality traffic. PPC provides you with quality and well-targeted traffic. Visitors are narrowed down into ‘qualified’ people who are actually looking for specific products and/or services that you offer – those who are more likely to become a ‘lead’ (a convert) and complete a transaction (either by buying your product or subscribing to the service that you are offering).

·    Widen your reach. PPC advertising provides additional traffic to your site, aside from the natural or “organic” search engines.

·    Track your investment. PPC advertising makes use of a tracking system that will determine exactly who comes to the website and what they do once they arrive – the length of their stay on the site and the number of pages (including the actual pages) that they view. These are valuable tools in determining statistics such as return on investment (ROI), acquisition cost-per-visitor, and conversion rates (the percentage of visitors who are converted into customers or leads).

Below are some important things to consider when planning on a pay per click campaign:

1. Know your product. Take an inventory of the product and/or services that you have to offer (before anything else).

2. Stay within the budget. Determine your daily or monthly budget; and stay with it. This means keeping your budget in mind, avoiding bidding wars if possible.

3. Bid just right. Know how to bid right – a bid that is too high can exhaust all of your money, while a bid that is too low can make you lose that spot.

4. Watch the bottom line. Measure your profit margin against your spending or expenses. Know when to stop and terminate your PPC program – if you spend more on advertising but have little or no sales at all.

5. Find the right keywords. Decide which keyword phrases to opt and bid for. Do some keyword research, either by actually looking at existing search terms or with the use of online keyword suggestion tools, to know which terms are mostly used when searching for items that are related to your business. Focus on specific keywords, not on general ones.

6. Write effective ads. A good PPC ad is that which can persuade and move a searcher. There are several approaches to this:

·    Discount offers
·    Testimonials
·    Celebrity/famous endorsers
·    Money-back guarantees
·    Free trials or sample offers
·    Freebies
·    Reverse psychology
·    Major benefits (“Lose weight”)
·    Direct instructions (“Click here”)

7. Maintain a professional-looking site. Your web content should be regularly updated and checked for spelling and grammatical errors. There should be no broken links or images. The website should be simple – designed in such a way that it will be easy for visitors to navigate and load. Include contact details to create a good impression among potential customers.

Done properly, PPC advertising can be an effective marketing tool that will maximize the return on your investment!

What exactly is Search Engine Optimization?

What Is Search Engine Optimization?

Search Engine Optimization is the process of choosing the most appropriate targeted keyword phrases related to your site, and making sure that these phrases help your site achieve a high rank in search engines, so that when someone searches for specific phrases it returns your site somewhere within the top ten search results. It basically involves fine tuning the content of your site along with the HTML and Meta Tags and also involves the appropriate link building process.

The most popular search engines are Google, Yahoo, MSN Search, AOL and Ask Jeeves. Search engines keep their methods and ranking algorithms secret, to get credit for finding the most valuable search-results and to deter spam pages from clogging those results. A search engine may use hundreds of factors while ranking the listings where the factors themselves and the weight each carries may change continually. Algorithms can differ so widely that a webpage that ranks #1 in a particular search engine could rank #200 in another search engine. New sites need not be “submitted” to search engines to be listed.

A simple link from a well established site will get the search engines to visit the new site and begin to spider its contents. It can take a few days to even weeks from the referring of a link from such an established site for all the main search engine spiders to commence visiting and indexing the new site.

If you are unable to research and choose keywords and work on your own search engine ranking, you may want to hire someone to work with you on these issues.

Search engine marketing and promotion companies will look at the plan for your site and make recommendations to increase your search engine ranking and website traffic. If you wish, they will also provide ongoing consultation and reporting to monitor your website and make recommendations for editing and possible improvements, in order to keep your site traffic flow and your search engine ranking high. Normally the search engine optimization experts work with the web designer so that they can build an integrated plan together right away, and so that all aspects of design are considered at the same time.

I have used a few SEO service providers who have done a good job helping me improve and increase the flow of traffic to my websites, but you have to be careful and do your due diligence when deciding whose services you will employ. Keep in mind that SEO services are usually moderately expensive in the best of cases, so be careful!

Increase traffic to your website using social networking sites

The popularity of social networking sites is increasing day by day!

I’m talking about sites like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Digg etc. It can be said that social networking is one of the best and free ways for increase traffic to your site. Here are some tips you can use to increase your traffic using social networking sites:

(1). Increase traffic through Friends
Friends are the heart of the social networking attitude, and when promoting content this can be a valuable tool in viral marketing. The more friends you have in your network, the more visibility you will have when promoting.

(2). Increase traffic through Blogs
Blogs are one more great way to spread the word! Blogs allow you to post nameless comments. I use these blogs to post a comment and then I include a link to one of my sites. I achieve a free back link for simply commenting on a story.

(3). Increase traffic through Picture Perfect
You may not understand it, but by passing on uploading your picture, you are also passing on an opportunity to get more people clicking on your articles. Why? Well, for one thing, it is known that spammers never take the time to upload a picture. Second, it is called “social” networking and “social” bookmarking sites. If you are trying to be “social”, you definitely should put a face to your name.

(4). Increase traffic through Profile Pages
If you are a keen online social networker, you will have a killer profile page. Your profile page will increase your link total to your projects, and it will shift visitors to your other profile pages in other networks so you get more friends!

(5). Increase traffic through bulletin
You can send bulletins to your entire list of friends. The more friends you have, the more views your bulletins receive. Common sense! Some people use bulletins way to much and end up getting deleted very quickly, so my advice is to use this angle a few times a month and keep it simple!

(6). Increase traffic through Content
Nothing is more important than content. If you are a good writer and you write about interesting topics, you are going to do well on the social networking sites. People seem to like top 10 lists, top 20 lists, etc. I suggest that you look at digg.com to see what gets the most diggs.

(7) Increase traffic through clipart and screensavers
If you have some skills in this direction then try creating clipart and screensavers. Offering these for free is also a good way to get more traffic.

Finally, make sure that you are part of a few of the more popular social networking websites. These memberships will be only destined to build your own network and not to do overt marketing. As your social network grows you can invite your contacts to join you on the social networking website. This should start a sequence reaction that will get them inviting their own contacts and so on. Your network will grow to a point where people will start naturally inquiring into the nature of your business and what you do, and then you can just tell them about it in a conversational sort of way, without pitching or selling anything. Then you will see success come your way.

It will take some time, so be patient!

How to get targeted traffic to your website

Everyone who has a website knows that to have sales you must have traffic, but not just any traffic. It has to be targeted traffic.

What is targeted traffic? It is simply getting visitors to your website that are interested in what your website is about. For example, people interested in buying jewelry will find jewelry websites interesting.

How can I get targeted traffic, you ask? The following are tried and tested methods that work for me:

Forums: Subscribe to forums that discuss your topic. Answer questions and join in the debates there. Become an expert in the field. Then with each article reply you write have a discreet link to your website in the signature file. What can be placed in your signature is often determined by the forum moderators. Do not spam the forum or you will be stopped from posting. This is one of the most productive ways of getting free traffic as those who click your link have already read and liked your style.

Linking from/to other websites: Contact website owners that have similar but not competitive websites to yours, ask them for a reciprocal link from their website to yours. Be sure to select your link partner to match closely your customer profile. Software programs such as Arelis are very helpful in this process.

E-Zines: Contact e-zine owners that have your target readership and buy advertisements from them. Be sure to have a test run to see that the return on investment is sufficient to cover the costs involved. If you are buying an extended run of advertisements haggle with the e-zine owner over price. You may save a considerable amount.

Newsletters: When people visit your website offer them something of value for free if they sign up to your newsletter (like an e-Book). Your newsletter should be written tightly geared towards your topic. It should be published regularly at weekly intervals.

E-Books: Often used, these are usually free informational books for your clients and for others to give away free if they leave your links in the book itself. You can place links back to your website in the books you sell or give to your clients.

Joint Ventures: Contact online marketers looking for new products to sell. They often have large mailing lists with eager to buy customers. Normally they are willing to email their list for a cut of the sale price. This works particularly well with informational products. It has several advantages. It can give a very sizeable boost to both your sales and mailing list within a very short period.

Purchased Traffic: This is probably the cheapest in terms of time and most expensive money wise. It gives a traffic boost normally within 30 days. What are you buying? You are buying traffic from expired domain names which the company selling the traffic has bought. They are domain names still registered on the search engines which get a considerable amount of traffic. The previous domain name owners have either lost interest in the name or simply forgot to renew the registration. This means that the traffic from the expired domain name is simply redirected to your website. This is usually high quality traffic as only websites with traffic such as you want is redirected to you. As always, a test run to see if this traffic is suitable should be undertaken.

When you combine these techniques and apply them consistently over time you will find a rich source of targeted traffic coming to your website. This, (combined with a quality program and/or product), will ensure the success of your online business.