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Profiting From Small Search Engines

Pay Per Click Advertising 1Pay Per ClickOnce you venture into the world of Pay Per Click advertising, you'll soon discover that the marketplace is sharply divided between tier 1 Search Engines (Google and Overture), and everyone else. While it's difficult to imagine a comprehensive, successful Pay Per Click Advertising campaign that doesn't include the major players, companies that limit themselves to Google and Overture may be missing out on profitable traffic.

Defining Tier 1 And Tier 2 Search Engines:

Two things separate Google and Overture from the rest of the Pay Per Click Search Engines. The big players deliver more traffic, and the quality of the clicks is often better. Simply put, if you advertise on Google and Overture your ad will be seen by more people, and these people are more likely going to buy from you. This is why it’s difficult to ignore the big players when crafting your Pay Per Click Advertising strategy. However, if you're willing to put in the effort, you'll often discover it's the smaller, lesser known, Search Engines that ultimately deliver the most profitable traffic to your site.

The Downside Of Being Big:

Ironically, the same factors that make Google and Overture essential to any Pay Per Click Advertising campaign are also the reasons it's becoming increasingly difficult for small and medium size companies to generate profitable traffic from the top tier Search Engines.

Nearly every company doing Pay Per Click Advertising is using Google and Overture, meaning you're competing against virtually every company remotely connected with your industry for your keywords. As competition for your keywords increases your prices rise, and your profits fall. Both Google and Overture have hundreds of thousands of advertisers, causing keywords in some competitive industries to sell for over $10.00 per click! As this trend continues small and medium size companies will be forced to explore alternative sources of traffic if they hope to maintain their profit margins on their Pay Per Click Advertising campaigns.

The other downside of working with the big Search Engines is they tend to focus their customer support resources on their big customers. This can make it difficult for smaller companies to get help optimizing their campaigns, generating lists of keywords or creating compelling ad copy.

Thankfully, there are several smaller Search Engines who can fill the void by delivering high quality Search traffic at an affordable price.

clicks into customersClicks into CustomersThe Best Of The Rest:

Once you expand your horizons beyond Google and Overture, and begin running tests on some smaller Search Engines, you'll find wide discrepancies in traffic quality and volume, software functionality and customer support. When deciding which smaller Search Engines to work with we recommend focusing on traffic quality as the key criteria. If your clicks convert into customers, it's easier to put up with the challenges that come with working with the smaller Search Engines.

Lycos AdBuyer consistently delivers high quality traffic, but you may have difficulty generating the volume you need for some of your keywords. Their customer support is top notch, but their software isn't as user friendly as Google or Overture's. We recommend Lycos as a good source of incremental Search traffic at competitive rates.

FindWhat.Com does a better job generating traffic volume (they are the third largest Pay Per Click Search Engine), and their overall traffic quality is decent. They do a good job supporting their customers, but their software lacks some key features to help users easily manage their campaigns, and track the ROI for each ad and keyword. We highly recommend testing FindWhat. They are the largest of the second tier players, and can be an important contributor to the success of your Pay Per Click Advertising strategy.

Enhance Interactive and Search123 are two other smaller Search Engines we recommend based on a combination of traffic volume and quality. Both are still building their networks, and continually improving their software. You can still find good bargains for your keywords on these Search Engines as they are still relatively unknown.

world wide webVast World Wide WebSummary:

In today’s vast World Wide Web your potential customers could be searching for your products on hundreds of different sites. In a perfect world you would serve up an ad whenever, and wherever somebody was looking for what you sell. Using a combination of Google, Overture, and as many smaller Search Engines as you can test, you will increase the chances that your ad will be there when your prospects are ready to buy.

Smaller Search Engines generally offer cheaper cost per clicks, and better customer support than Google and Overture. As with many aspects of Pay Per Click Advertising, the only way to tell if these smaller Engines will work for you is to give them a test. A small investment in your time and money may ultimately uncover a great new source of profitable traffic, and improve the overall metrics of your Pay Per Click Advertising campaigns.

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5 Valuable Search Engine Optimization Tips

seo contentContent OptimizingSearch engine optimization is THE most cost effective way for a company to market their products and services. Below are 5 extremely valuable search engine optimization tips:

1. Content is Key

Webmasters are extremely concerned with optimizing their code and as a result, they often forget about optimizing the content. As optimization tips go, this is one you should pay close attention to. The first 200 words of your home page should be loaded with keywords, this includes your headline. Some search engines, particularly those that ignore meta tags, will actually use the first few lines of text (including the headline) as your site description.

2. Utilize Static HTML

You don't need a "dynamic" website unless you have dynamic content, such as airline seat availability and pricing which needs to be dynamically published from a database because it constantly changes. You may store your website in a database but you're better off publishing it as a static HTML website. It's cheaper, the pages will download faster, and search engines will find it easier to comprehensively index your website.

The less HTML code you have, the better, as it makes it easier and faster for the search engine to index your page. Aim for a total page weight of 50 KB for any page (that's including graphics). Certainly, anything over 100 KB is going to be slow, and some search engines don't like pages that are over 100 KB.

title tag seoThe Title Tag is Important3. The Title Tag is Critical

The title tag is the single most important piece of content for people who search. Keep it short: Don't have more than 60 characters (with spaces), which is roughly 8-10 words. Lead with the most important careword for that particular page. Always start off with what is specific about the page and move to what is general. Many websites begin their title with their brand or organization name, and then follow with what is unique about the page. (This is a very common mistake, so check out your website.)

4. Optimize Your Images

This is another optimization tip that many people forget about. However, through use of your "alt" image attribute tag, you can slip in an extra keyword phrase or two that describes the picture users are about to see. The text only shows up when the user has turned off the 'view images' option in their browser or the image fails to load. But some search engine robots will pick it up too and the extra keywords could help your ranking. So take a few seconds to implement this optimization tip on your site and you could see improved results soon.

SEO ExpertSEO Professional5. Why You Shouldn't Optimize Your Own Site

While we have given you some basic optimization tips to help you quickly boost your search engine ranking, we still recommend that you hire a Search Engine Optimization professional for the best results. Search engines change their guidelines regularly, making it impossible for any one or two people to stay on top of all the changes while still running their business. What was a great optimization tip yesterday, could get your site blacklisted today. Your SEO professional will watch over your site as if it was our own, ensuring your site is always running in peak form. For example, we predicted many of the guideline changes Google made in November of 2003, saving many of our customers from the massive fall in rankings most experienced.
 
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When Your Graphic Designer Costs You Money…

when your designer is costing a lotWhen Your Designer Costs Too MuchSo how do you know when your graphic designer costs you financially and emotionally?

When a file is not prepared correctly… When you go to press, and have your media material produced in prints, and find out that the file was built incorrectly, then that's the time when your graphic designer will cost you money.

Many pre-press operators have complained about having to correct graphic designers work. To have a file prepared incorrectly can have drastic financial, and emotional consequences, for the owner. The time needed to rectify the problem can cause major delays, and additional expense. This is due to the graphic designer's understanding that his job is done, when he produces the design that you require.

It is therefore necessary for a graphic designer to understand the basic principle of what you see on screen, may not be the same when it comes off the press. A designer should know how to correctly build a bleed; check that the panels fold correctly; and that colour separation is well understood. The list goes on and on. If these issues are not properly addressed, the customer will most likely pay for additional costs, because a print house, or service provider,will definitely charge extra for fixing the problem.

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