I love to write, and I do a lot of it. So when I heard that submitting articles to free-article directories was a good way to get high-quality - and free - traffic to my websites, I started exploring.
Just Google "article directory" and you will find lots of them. You submit your article; they review it according to their published guidelines; if it passes, they publish it - along with your "resource box," which give your contact info and a link to your site.
So to get targeted traffic, you submit these articles to directories.
Then editors and e-zine publishers find your articles, and if relevant to their needs, publish them. You get incoming links - important for raising your rankings in the search engines. You get exposure to - possibly - lots of people. And it costs you nothing but the effort of writing a meaningful article that makes people want to know more about you and what you're offering.
The directories make their money from ads, usually; that's their motivation.
What's the downside? If you're serious about using this approach, it's a lot of work.
You can buy software to partially automate the task; but it's not cheap, nor easy to use. I checked out the leading ones and found them less tiresome than individual submissions, but still tiresome (e.g., ArticleSubmitterPro).
Then I discovered ArticleMarketer.com. It's a web-based service, inexpensive, and it works. Takes me about 3 minutes to submit an article. Within a few days, the article has been submitted to dozens of directories. A few days later, it's in hundreds of locations.
And I get traffic.
You can try it out for 3 days for free, with limited distribution. 3 months of unlimited use, with full distribution, is $39.95.
The more I learn about Google AdWords, the more it fascinates me. My favorite expert (so far) writing about this is Perry Marshall.
In Perry's own words: "Google has a new system that makes it possible, for the first time in the history of the world, to deposit five bucks, write a couple of ads, and instantly get access to over 100 million people - in less than 10 minutes.
"It's called Google AdWords and it's hot. In fact it may be the first and best thing to do to get traffic to your site.
"But it's not always as easy as I just made it sound - AdWords has some nuances, and most people have a rough time at first."
Perry has written a very helpful e-course called "5 days to success with Google AdWords" and there's no charge for it. You can find out about it by clicking here.
In the biz, it's called "pay per click" or PPC marketing. Yahoo! initiated it, but Google greatly refined it.
It works like this: You design a very limited text ad according to a template. You select a number of key-word phrases (generally just called "keywords," even though they are phrases). Google shows the ad on pages that have thos e keywords, and on search-result pages where someone searched using one of the keywords.
You bid on the keywords. How much you pay determines how high on the stack of ads your ad will appear.
For example, for my book, "Every Man a Hero, Every Woman a Coach," I learned that the top bid for "good marriage" was .18. So by bidding .19, I could ensure that, whenever my ad was shown in response to the appearance of "good marriage" on a site or in a search, it would be #1.
It was a thrill to put "good marriage" into the Google search field and have my ad come up in the #1 spot - within minutes!
However, days later - no clicks.
So I added words: "better marriage"; "avoid divorce"; and a bunch more. No change.
Then I heard a suggestion: Use the names of competing or related products! I put in "Focus on the Family"; "Dr. Dobson"; and "Dr. Laura." That got things moving.
More on AdWords as I learn more.
Just learned 2 interesting things from my SBI newsletter (see "The Way of the Tortoise," below, for an explanation of SBI):
- The 2-for-1 sale deadline has been extended to midnight of January 3 (do they do this because it's going well? Or going poorly? I don't know, but it's still a phenomenal bargain.)
- I said something about a 30-day guarantee, followed by proration. I was wrong. It is a flat, money-back guarantee, for the whole year. Period.
I've been tortoising my way through the SBI methodology. Got my key words, got a site up, but haven't got the ezine or other stuff going yet. I'll let you know when I do.
If you want to jump onto this, click here to check it out.
And by the way, since I'm so gung-ho about SBI, I would really appreciate it if you would share with me any holes you see in it - or any better deals for setting up an Internet business!
I hadn't intended to talk about SBI yet, but they just sent me notification of a pre-Christmas sale that is too good not to pass along to you.
Site Built It! is a combination product, service, and complete education system. If you've been thinking about how to make money on the Internet - as I have - and have found that the bits and pieces of information you've gathered are fascinating but confusing - as I have - you should take a look at SBI.
It's the product of a company started by Ken Evoy, MD, a doctor who gave up medicine for Internet marketing.
If you get SBI, you will be taken by the hand, step-by-step, through discovering your niche; selecting suitable keywords (an important factor); creating a site; filling it with appropriate content; building traffic; and making money from it.
This is not a get-rich-quick product. Rather, Ken encourages you to treat this as a real business, into which you invest as much or as little time as you want.
What speaks louder than anything for his product is this: 63% of SBI customers' sites wind up in the top 3% of ALL websites.
I scoured the Web, seeking any negative comments about the man or his product. The closest I found to a criticism said something like, "SBI is a fabulous product. But I don't have patience for it; I'm in this for a quick buck. SBI's approach is too slow for me."
That's why Ken says it's "the way of the tortoise" - slow and steady wins the race.
It's normally $300, and the best bargain on the net at that price. You truly need no other ebook, software, or hosting service. SBI teaches you everything, walks you through it, and continues to provide ongoing guidance to creating stable, long-term, and ultimately passive income - of unlimited proportions.
But between now and Christmas, it's 2-for-1 - you get TWO complete 1-year signups for the price of 1! And of course, you still get SBI's 30-day no-questions-asked money-back guarantee, and a pro-rated refund for the remaining months of the 1-year period.
You know that kid of yours that keeps coming home after moving out? Give him or her the other SBI subscription, and let THEM support YOU in the manner to which you would like to become accustomed...:-)
Check it out here.
Gold was discovered at Sutter's Mill, California in early January, 1848. The stampede of fortune-seekers that ensued is an important part of American history and forms an important part of our national character.
When Tim Berners-Lee invented the Worldwide Web, a simple graphical interface to the Internet, he started a gold rush, too. Only this gold field is unlimited, and huge strikes are being made every day, by people of all ages, from all walks of life.
I've used the Web almost since its inception, and have some understanding of its technical underpinnings. But it took a long time for its commercial potential to actually dawn on me.
And it has taken even longer for me to realize that I might be able to personally benefit from it - beyond having a "calling-card" or "branding" site for my consulting services.
I began seriously thinking about this almost a year ago. Downloaded free ebooks. Started buying some. Tuned in to free teleseminars. Attended events. Interviewed people.
The more I learned, the more confused I got. There are many often-contradictory opinions about how to make money on the Web.
What I finally realized was known to the Gold Rushers: It's a land of truly boundless opportunities. There is no "right way" to do it - there are many ways.
But far from making things easy for me, that just confused me further. I have a hard enough time making choices; to hear that "any road MIGHT lead to riches" is almost too much!
I think most of my readers are more decisive and perceptive than I (after all, I never got an engineering degree :-)). But since there may be a few who can benefit from my journey of discovery, I will share what I learn in this blog.
Welcome to a novice's journal.
(These posts now have their own site, InternetMarketingConfusion.com.)