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    T h e   e M a r k e t i n g   D i g e s t   W e e k l y

    Discussing & Defining Internet Marketing. Since May, 1997
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    Edited by Gary K. Foote & C.J. Foote
    ISSN 1522-6913
    Volume #2,Issue #327
    Monday, January 24, 2000


---------------------- Sponsor Message --------------------------

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*** Editor's Ramble
    by Gary K. Foote, Editor

Hi Everyone,

The eMD Member's Links Directory, a Member's Resource page to
which you can add your own listings.  Use it to find other eMD
members wth whom you can do business.  Let's pull together as a
community and generate some business for each other every day.
List your business right now...
http://www.homepagetools.com/links/users/emdmemberlinkspage.html

As always, please take the time to visit this issue's sponsor,
"AllAdvantage.com", as it is our advertisers who keep the eMD a free resource.
You may follow links to our sponsors from their links in each
issue of the eMD, or from our Sponsor Resources web page located
at;
http://www.webbers.com/emark/sponsors.html

Finally, please forward this issue of the eMD on to two friends
or business associates and help us build our circulation.

Now let's get marketing...

GKF, Ed.


-----------------------  In This Issue  -------------------------

    - Re: Web Design & Marketing Part I
        by Joseph Jobst

    - Web Design & Marketing
        Part II, e-Commerce Review, iCAT
        Part III, Search Engine Issues

    - eMD Marketing HelpDesk: Seeking Online eMarketing Courses
        Diana Landry

    - Online Consumables Market Takes Off
        Activmedia

    - Cyber Dialogue: Security Fears Stop Women Buying Online
        NUA Surveys

    - How do you market your site?
        eMD Marketing Poll

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*** Re: Web Design & Marketing Part I
    by Joseph Jobst

Hello Gary,

Your article "Web Design & Marketing" is as always
straightforward
and well-founded. There is just one point I can't agree with --
>600 pixels wide is the smallest common denominator

AOL's browsers (except the newest version) are set to a FIXED
width of 600, that means a scroll free resolution of 585.
And WebTV is fixed at a resolution of 576.
Since more than 20 million netizens are surfing on AOL and WebTV
I think 576 pixel should be the smallest common denominator.

Anyway, keep on your great work!

Your eFriend,
Joseph Jobst
josconNetworks Inc  http://linz1.net
*Serving Clients Online Since 1994*

Editor's Response

Hi Joseph,

Thanks for setting the record straight on this.  The combined
figures for AOL and WebTV usage are plenty large enough to make
this a significant point.

And thanks for the kudos, too.  I really enjoy publishing the
eMD.  I find it relaxing rather than stressful.

GKF - Ed.


***  Web Design & Marketing
     Part II, e-Commerce Review, iCAT

Last week I left off after reaching the point of deciding to use,
and choosing from the myriad of solutions for, e-commerce
management.  To begin with, keeping your inventory online can be
a daunting task, unless your product line and prices are
relatively stable.  So, an antique store, whose inventory is
constantly in flux, might find maintaining their online inventory
database time intensive, while a hardware store will have stable
inventory, simplifying the process.

Assuming the decision to use a complete shopping cart/e-commerce
system has been made, here are some initial considerations.

First, do you [or your site designer] install and maintain your
own software solution or do you use a third-party interface to
generate and maintain your shop's contents, prices, SKU, etc.
Each has its benefits and its drawbacks.

iCat, for as little as $99.95 a month, offers a fast, easy to use
e-commerce system.  You can access your secure, password
protected administration area from any web browser.  Their own
claim is, "You don't need to be a programmer or a designer or
have any special computer skills", and I believe they are right.

You can specify sales tax and shipping or set up onsite
calculators for customer use.

You can generate reports:

Sales Reports - Sales reports provide information about orders
and customers over a specified period of time.

Customer Reports - Customer reports allow merchants to generate
customer lists and detailed order summaries.

Traffic Reports - Traffic reports give merchants statistics on
which items and sections are being viewed.

URL: http://www.icat.com/affiliates/jump.asp?affiliate=emd

I'll review another off-site system next week, continuing this
focus on e-commerce in weekly sections.  Otherwise the topic
would soon become boring to those not dealing with e-commerce
issues.


***  Web Design & Marketing
     Part III, Search Engine Issues

As every poll and survey shows, search engine optimization is
considered the most important issue when marketing a website.
The question I hear most when consulting as search engine
specialist is, "What makes a site place well in search engine
returns?"  The answer lies an the early stages of site planning,
when considering the following issues:

Keywords:  Begin your site design by looking at your competition
online.  Consider which keywords and keyphrases you believe  your
target market will use when searching for your product or service
in the various search engines.  Look at the top ten returns for
each keyword/keyphrase.  View their source and list their
keywords/keyphrases as listed in their META tags.  I'm not
suggesting you steal their keywords, but that you learn what
works for your competition.  You'll likely come up with additions
to your own list of keywords that you hadn't thought of before.

Once you've built your list of keywords and keyphrases you should
build the list of links for your opening screen.  Use these words
and phrases in your page titles, as link text, and as text copy
within the page's content.

Also use them in your METAtags for both keywords and for your
description.  Please note that some search engines will penalize
a site by lowering its relevance to searches for 'spamming' the
index.  To avoid this you should limit repeats of keywords in
your METAtags to no more than three [3] per keyword, per tag.

The earlier on your page you can introduce your keywords as links
and text content the better.  I often use the device of including
a navigation bar consisting of text links [carefully chosen to
reflect keywords] centered at top of a page, making it the first
thing a search engine 'sees' when it arrives.  In any case avoid
a lot of content, whether HTML content or text content, before
you include significant links.

This is a very significant point, especially in light of the
amount of extraneous HTML generated by today's HTML editors.
Why?  Because, during the creation of a page using an editor,
when you make a change to your previous layouts the program does
not remove the HTML already written.  Instead it writes even more
HTML to effect the changes to your layout.  This can quickly lead
to a huge amount of HTML before any meaningful content is
presented.  This has serious negative imapct on a page's search
engine friendliness, and is the reason I still write HTML by
hand.  It allows me the flexibility to make changes by removing
HTML that is no longer required and adding only that HTML which
is necessary to layout the page.

Text content must also support your keyword/keyphrase list.
Write copy that begins with your keys.  In other words choose to
start your first paragraph with your prime key and continue to
build your other keys into the following text.  Don't be afraid
of repeating, as long as you consider the 'no more than three [3]
repeats' rule.  Some search engines look for this type of
activity, labeling it 'spamming the index'.

The number of links to your site is considered by some search
engines.  The belief is that if a site is linked to from many
sites it must be a better example of its niche than those with
fewer links in.  One strategy for dealing with this is to create
your own network of target market related sites at different
domains, all interlinked to increase each's link-in score. This
strategy also allows you to reach out directly to specific
markets for your products or services.

One example of this is Swiss Chalets Village Inn, a lodging
property located in the four-season, resort playground of New
Hampshire's White Mountains.  Their general market is transient
visitors to the area.  Their sub-set markets cover many different
interests that vary some with the seasons.  So, we developed
their main site to reach the general travelers in the northeast
US market, aiming at the 'lodging industry by region' market when
developing their keys.

We then developed other sites, all visibly sponsored by the Swiss
Chalets Village Inn, aimed at specific vertical markets within
their general market. Two examples are:

http://www.newenglandskiing.com
This site is a directory of links to ski areas and skier's
resources, covering the New England region.

http://www.newenglandromance.com
This site is an 'ideabook' of romantic things to do with or for
the one you love.

Both of these sites, as well as others developed to reach
vertical markets [subsets of their general market] for the same
client, drive a lot of traffic to their main site, where their
main objective is realized...  increased reservations at the
Swiss Chalets Village Inn.

Finally, if you plan to do your best with search engine
positioning for your site you need to keep current on what
algorithms are being used for each search engine, and when
changes occur.

The best way you can assure yourself of the latest information is
to subscribe to Danny Sullivan's Search Engine Watch.  Mr.
Sullivan spends countless hours keeping current and reporting
back to his subscribers.  An annual subscription costs $69.00 and
is well worth it, not only subscribing you to the complete
version of the newsletter [there is a free, less-informative
newsletter available from this page also], but also giving you
complete access to the Member's Only area of the supporting
website.  The Member's Only area carries lots of valuable,
constantly updated information on all of the major search
engines.

The following URL will take you directly to a page describing the
complete benefits of being a paid subscriber and a link to an
online subscription form.  The URL below contains the eMD
affiliate's code and, if you do visit their site, please do so
from this link.  It will help set off the time and costs of
publishing the eMD.

http://searchenginewatch.com/about_emark/subscribe.html


*** eMD Marketing HelpDesk

Seeking Online eMarketing Courses
by Diana Landry

Do you know where I would be able to take some on-line courses on
e-marketing?

Diana Landry
HRT 115 & HEMS Coordinator
Deloitte & Touche
dlandry@deloitte.ca
416-601-6150 x 7448

Editor's Response

Well, Diana,  I'd like to thing of the eMD as presenting a course
on e-marketing, though we don't publish a structured learning
experience, rather a 'stream-of-conciousness' discourse.  But,
recognizing your request for formal online education on e-
marketing I present this list of possible sources for, and
resources about, both free and for-pay courses.  It is by no
means comprehensive, just the results of some time searching
online.

CyberEd: CyberEd is a means of delivering on the Web university
courses for college credit and/or personal or professional
development. The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
http://www.umassd.edu/cybered/distlearninghome.html

Online Courses Newsletter:
http://stayonline.8m.com/

Freeskills Home Page
http://www.freeskills.com/index2.html

LearningWeb
http://www.learning-web.com

The World Lecture Hall
Contains links to pages created by faculty worldwide who are
using the Web to deliver university-level academic courses in any
language.
http://www.utexas.edu/world/lecture/

Enhancement Courses
http://www.courses.edu/

eCollege.com
Search over 500 accredited courses offered online from over 100
Universities.
http://www.ecollege.com/

California Virtual University
Accredited public and private California universities offer more
than 2,000 online courses to students anywhere on the World Wide
Web.
http://www.california.edu

Hope this gets you started on the road to a solid education on
eMarketing.

GKF - Ed.


Need help with your online marketing efforts?  Looking for a
particular resource that seems to be eluding you? Need an answer
to an online marketing question?  Let the eMD Marketing HelpDesk
help you find the answers you need.  Here's the request
address...  ask away.
mailto:emd-marketing-help@webbers.com



---------------------- Sponsor Message --------------------------


Get paid for surfing the net.  Get paid when others surf the net.
http://www.alladvantage.com

-----------------------------------------------------------------



*** Activmedia:Online Consumables Market Takes Off
    Excerpt from Nua Internet Surveys: January 17th, 2000


Internet users spent an estimated total of USD66 billion online
during 1999, according to a new report from ActivMedia Research.
The projected figure for this year is USD160 million.


The report "Consumable Products: Building Customer Loyalty
Online" focused on Internet retailing of consumables and found
that 40 percent of online shoppers purchased from this product
group during 1999.

See the complete article at:
http://www.activmediaresearch.com/free_newsroom.html


*** Cyber Dialogue: Security Fears Stop Women Buying Online
    NUA Surveys

Jan 11 2000: Concerns about online security and privacy make
female Internet users think twice about buying products on the
Internet, according to a new survey from Cyber Dialogue. Women
are also considerably less likely than men to buy products
online.

See the complete article at:
http://www.nua.ie/surveys/index.cgi?f=VS&art_id=905355518&rel=
true


*** How do you market your site?
    eMD Marketing Poll


 Current Total Votes:           108

 Banners (22)                   20%

 Opt in E-mail (11)             10%

 Reciprocal links (15)          14%

 One-way links (11)             10%

 Newsletter/e-zine ads (10)     09%

 Search engine positioning (25) 23%

 Offline ads (10)               09%

Other User-Suggestions          04%
            Classified Ads  (2)
            Direct Mail     (2)

To participate in the eMD Member's Poll and to keep current on
results go to;

http://www.webbers.com/emark/


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The eMarketing Digest is published by  Webbers Communications
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