Friday, December 28, 2012

Getting Backlinks for SEO

Having a site where other sites link to yours is a critical factor in achieving page rank. To achieve page rank, you need more than a few links; you need thousands. If you don't have a thousand friends, then how do you achieve this?

Google ranks pages on a scale of 1 – 10 for how they'll be ranked.  A PR5 domain is a domain with a page rank of 5 on a scale of 1 to 10.  A site with a value of 10 will be at the top of the page on the first page of a Google query  A page with rank of 1may never be found. Domains which have backlinks are valuable.  There are businesses out there who create pages with backlinks with the intention of selling them to SEO grunts like me. 

You can Google "buy PR5 domains" and you'll find a number of sites selling domains with page rank. Problem is; buyer beware, because you could easily spend hundreds of dollars on a domain touted to have a gazillion backlinks, but may not have any.

To verify that a domain has any backlinks, you need to copy the domain you're interested in and do the following:

1) Visit the site in your browser to make sure it exists and what type of site it is.

2) Go to a site that checks for fake page rank such as Fake PageRank Checker and type your URL into the box.  The utility will run a scan to make sure the site has not been artificially ranked with redirects. This site will also give you the actual PR number for the domain.

3) Go to Bulk Backlink Checker - Majestic SEO and enter your domain here as well.  Another scan will be run to determine the real number of backlinks the domain has. In most cases, the real number will be far smaller than what is being claimed.

If the site looks legitimate, then buy it. You'll probably spend several hundred dollars to get a domain with real backlinks and a decent trust history. Then what?

Once you've purchased the domain, you'll want to host it someplace where it will give this domain and all your other subsequent domain purchases a unique IP address that will be different from the other domains you'll be buying in the future. SEO Web Hosting by SEO host - Revolutionalizing the SEO industry is one site that will do this for you.

Once you're transferred your domain and have the hosting set up, you'll populate that domain with your own content. In most cases, this will be a landing page that has legitimate content and has important links directing traffic to your main site. Be sure to use your real Google profile on your landing page to make sure your real online profile integrates with the relevant content you're an authority for online.

Links can also be purchased, but this service is a subscription based service that can really add up over time and you have no control over the site those links appear on.

That's it for now. Cheers!


Friday, December 21, 2012

Connecting the Dots for Critical Mass

If you want to be successful online, you need to play the game. If you're too sophisticated to Tweet or don't want everyone knowing your business, then I hope you're independently wealthy or already retired, because your online presence is where your online power is located. I have been very reluctant to do what everyone else is doing. I now understand there is a reason for it that goes far beyond just participating in a fad. Developing a credible online identity has everything to do with traffic building and rank. The last thing Google wants is to give an online scammer a high rank. To that end, Google wants people who are real people with real expertise and skill in a given field before they give them rank in search engines. To achieve authority status, it is necessary you play the online game with gusto. I have not yet added a Twitter account, but that is on the list. The key is to connect all of your online account profiles together using Google+ and to make sure that you have a profile for whatever you want to be known for on all the major social media sites. This includes Linkedin, Yelp, Facebook, Google+, Gravatar, Twitter, Plaxo and all of the professional groups and forums you contribute to. All of this put together creates a credible online profile that can be trusted. The higher your trust index, the higher your rank will be when you blog and post. It can feel demeaning to submit all your personal stuff to electronic power brokers, but the world is changing faster than any of us can imagine, and we really no longer have the luxury to remain anonymous and unconnected. For introverts like myself, this is like going to the gym and doing push-ups. It feels like you're getting nothing done as you build fan pages and invite people into your circles, but this is how things work today, so I guess we just need to get used to it. For those who deliberately embrace this type of change, there is really marketing power in doing so. To get started, get a Google account if you don't already have one and populate it with as much content as you can. Sign up for Googl+ and connect all of your online dots inside your profile. It may take you all morning, but if you plan to sell anything online, this is what you need to do. More later. Cheers, and Merry Christmas Jamie

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Longtail Key Words

Longtail keywords are usually URLs made up of two to five different words and may constitute a phrase. Because of their length, they are less common, yet constitute the majority of web traffic from searches. Longtail keywords are a central part of web marketing strategy because they are selected with the intent to preempt what people will type in for an organic search and are normally linked to multiple landing pages.

To illustrate how these are used, let's say you've just opened a store that sells flowerpots. The name of your store is Botanical Designs, so you get as your business URL. You build a site and nobody comes by to visit your site. To remedy this situation, you read up on web marketing and buy some longtail URLS. You buy:,, and a host of others as well.

For my personal site, I've grabbing these URLs:

as many users of the software program Cinema 4D will probably type those words into their browser sooner or later. Another strategy is to populate your secondary pages with headings that incorporate keyword phrases that are of similar significance.

Now, you create a squeeze page or landing page for those URLs to start funneling traffic to your main site. You post your landing pages under each of your longtail URLs hoping to catch some of those organic searches where someone types "hand painted flowerpots" into the seach field. Since you own that URL and have populated your landing page with LSI keywords, and have your opt-in form with your free offer, your site shows up at the top of Google. You start collecting contact information from your visitors using your opt-in form and plug that information into your auto responder to send out more special offers to those visitors, and viola! You have just generated traffic using longtail keywords!

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Squeeze Page

A "squeeze page" is essentially a web page that offers something of value in exchange for a visitors contact information. In most cases, the offer is something that is free. The best type of offer is something that can be obtained immediately as a download, however a coupon to a local business may also be promoted.

The formula for a good squeeze page pitch is to identify the customer's problem. Talk about how terrible this problem is. Give graphic examples of the pain and suffering this problem causes. Then offer your solution. Talk about how your breakthrough solution will not only make the problem go away, but will solve many other problems as well. Then offer part of the solution for free. Be sure to sell them on how they'll never be truly happy until they buy the entire solution from you.

An empty claim or promise is weak; tell a story of how this solution worked for you, Betty,  Bob, and Alice. If you can demonstrate this in any way, do so because it will only help convince your audience that you're legit.

The next thing you need to do is become a real person to your customer. If you want to hide behind the anonymity of the web, you're doomed because people will think you have something to hide, and people who have something to hide are usually scammers. So, use a photograph of yourself, (or someone else's photo) and put your real name to your blog. 

An opt-in form is necessary to make the squeeze page work. The opt-in form might offer access to a download, or it could be a link to another part of the site that is only accessible when the required fields are filled out.  To prevent people from entering false information, an email is usually sent with a self-expiring, encrypted link. You can also get an opt-in form as part of your account with an AWeber account. 

The purpose for collecting contact information is to built a marketing list. Since many interested shoppers do not buy the first time around, initiating repeat contact with valuable, time-sensitive offers increases the likelihood that those qualified leads will convert in the future.

Some squeeze pages may only entice people with text, but the most effective ones I've seen trigger a video which launches automatically.  I've currently found an amazing tool online that is a real gem. You can download a free version of this opt-in tool, but like most online offers, the full-blown version is more desirable and cost money. For WordPress users, check out Opt-In Pop.  To illustrate how this works, check out my new site: C4Depot to see it in action. This WordPress plugin puts your opt-in form in front of your visitors as a pop-up window so it cannot be ignored. 

Another great WordPress plugin I've found which includes an opt-in squeeze form as part of a more comprehebnsive e-commerce package is WP eStore, probably the best software value I've ever bought for under $50. 


James Steidl

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Temporary Download Link

For people who wish to sell products online, there are easier ways to go about doing this than either building a site from scratch or even using a prebuilt e-commerce site. is a site that permits vendors to sell info products online with a self-expiring download link. This is pretty important as you wouldn't want someone to post the download link to something you're selling online and have the world obtain it for free.  Although I have not used this site yet, I have seen it was mentioned in USA Today and I have not seen any derogatory post online. Best of all, the site is free to use.

For WordPress users, there are a number of plugins. After trying some free plugins which crashed my entire system, I purchased WP eStore from Tips & Tricks HQ.  The plugin was well worth paying for and permits me to sell info products out of WordPress using an encrypted download link where your buyers receive an automatic, expiring download link. The whole flow is fully automated and designed to run unattended using PayPal IPN integration. There is no shopping cart or complicated e-commerce setup.

Although I haven't set it up yet, I also noticed this plugin comes with a squeeze page type form in a post, page or sidebar to offer a free product to build email list for internet marketing purpose (view details).

In conclusion, there are some free tools and modestly priced ones out there that are absolutely necessary for the e-entreprenures  who want to start selling things online quickly without using a third party portal, middleman or complex set-up.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Autoresponders — A Key to Online Success

It's amazing how ignorant business people are to the powerful online tools that are available to everyone for pennies a day.  One of those tools is the autoresponder. People tend to think an autoresponder is some kind of e-mail script you turn on when you go on vacation to let people know you're out of the office. Actually, an autoresponder is a catch-all term for an online program which collects information about who is visiting your site and initiates a subsequent action. This can be used to send follow-up e-mails to customers, visitors to your site, or to act like an usher at a movie theatre, where a name and e-mail is collected before granting access to a download or promotion.  Aweber is probably the undisputed leader in the autoresponder world.

Youtube is full of great tutorials on how to use aweber's tools and strategies on how to use an autoresponder in your site. Even the site is full of great information on what works and what doesn't in online marketing.  The strategy I am currently looking at is to place the autoresponder between visitors and a free download promotion as well as the check-out page for paid downloads.  The idea is that even if you don't get a click-though (online sale) by getting visitors to opt-in for future freebies, you'll eventually sell them on something in the future. Remember, it's all about reach and frequency, and the autoresponder is the most amazing tool ever invented for reaching qualified leads cheaply and easily.

Facebook's version of the autoresponder is the fan page. When you create a new commercial page on Facebook, you can ask people to "like" your page in order to grant them access to the fan page. The fan page can contain coupons, information or any type of intellectual property. Collecting "likes" is very much the same as building a list using an autoresponder. Fan pages can also have autoresponders added to build lists and get visitors to take advantage of further offers made on your fan page.

As I see it, the new culture of advertising and marketing seems to be evolving into a breadcrumb strategy; offer people free stuff to get their attention and up-sell them incrementally in easy stages until they discover they are utterly broke. Seriously, this is not far from the truth, and when done properly is neither offensive nor sneaky. In fact, a good marketing plan attached to a good product will always use an autoresponder and in the end, will make both seller and buyer very happy campers.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Build Traffic Using LSI Keywording

Latent Semantic Indexing is part of the algorithm used by Google to determine the relevance of a web page and ultimately to determine how it ranks. 

If you own an auto detailing business and want to drive traffic to your site, to use LSI keywording, you would want to pepper your web pages with keywords that are synonymous and also closely related to your trade.

Such keywords would include: waxing, car wax, buffing, shine, vacuuming, cars, auto, detailing, auto detailing, car cleaning, car wash, carwash, paint, scratches, finish, Amoral, upholstery, tires, wheels, rims, undercarriage, new car smell, and so on.

The point is to not only make sure you have all the obvious keywords, but keywords that are also associated with the main keywords of your business.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Make Your Blog Your Website

I'm in the process of doing the stuff everyone knows they need to do in order to stay relevant in the ever changing world of technology. The first thing is to get the blog going. Obviously, I've just started, so don't pass judgement yet. 

Since search engines have a love-affair with blogs due to the fresh, new content that flows into them, I've made the decision to make  my blog my primary site and use the nav bar to link to the other more static sites I control. More on that later.

Blogging is just one way to monetize your time and market yourself or your product. Everyone talks about things like "social media", "affiliate marketing", "auto-responders", "ad words" and "info marketing", yet how many people know enough about these things to actually make money? Well, I'm a man on a mission and my blog will be my expedition log into my quest to do just that.

I've been successful over the years selling stock photos and in a very short period of time, became one of the top 30 producers of stock photo content in the world. There are problems with this industry, not the least of which is theft, and in a nutshell, it has become less profitable over time. Nevertheless, I have not given up my quest to turn the net into a vending machine as I would much prefer to make something once and sell it a million times than to make something a million times and sell it once each time.

To that end, please joint me as I share my discoveries on my expedition to unlock the secrets of monetizing the web.