The Mender

Metamend's Web Site Optimization and Marketing Newsletter
Issue 5
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Welcome to "The Mender #5. Each month we feature tips, tricks and techniques for improving the marketing and promotion of your website, plus breaking news at Metamend and valuable resources for the serious web marketer.

What's New at Metamend?
This past month has been a busy one at Metamend. We were nominated for a Marshall McLuhan, E-World Award in the best B2B category. We were very honored to be one of the four finalists.

Metamend has teamed up with Big Picture Technologies to offer our marketing solution through BigPic's Ecommerce software. Read the press release here. Check out Big Picture and it's ecommerce software here.

We are very pleased to be teaming up with one of the premier ecommerce software companies in the world. Moving on up!



Marketing Your Website - Targeting Customers
The biggest mistake most website owners make is believing their site needs a million hits to be successful. What good is a million visitors to your site if no one buys anything? Wouldn't you rather have a thousand visitors who actually make purchases? Concentrating your marketing efforts toward finding the right customer is called Target Marketing.

You should know who your potential customer is -before- you start your marketing campaign. Ask yourself these questions. Who is interested in my product or service? How old are they? Where do they live? Are they Male or Female? Are they individuals or businesses? What price range can they afford? And of course the big question; How can I attract them to my site? You should have the answers to all of these questions (plus many more) set firmly in your mind and business plan before wasting time and/or money trying to market your site to the whole wide world. A.K.A.; the "shotgun" approach.

Narrowing down the field doesn't reduce your ability to sell. On the contrary it will actually enhance this ability by qualifying your customers for you. Next issue we'll discuss how to find your targets on the Internet.

Administrator's Chalk Board - Snake Oil Submission Companies
How many times have you seen this approach?
  • Automatically submit your site to 1000+ search engines!!!
  • Automatically submit your site to 3000+ search engines!!!
  • Automatically submit your site to 10 Million search engines!!!
Can you guess the common misnomers in the above claims made by some submission companies?
  1. There aren't 1000 decent search engines to submit to.
  2. You cannot auto-submit to all the search engines.
Many (of the best ones) require manually choosing a main category, then digging deeper into sub-categories before submitting your site.

So how do submission companies claim to get you into so many indexes and directories? They are not completely wrong but not completely honest either.

If you submit your site to altavista.com, have you done one submission, or 21? Both could be the 'honest' answer. Altavista's direct network of national and language specific sites now totals 21 engines worldwide. They may also sell result data to other engines, so the total could be many times higher. Once indexed by Altavista your data is accessible by all these individual engines, so you decide. Has your site been submitted to 1 or 21 engines?

How about Looksmart and Yahoo?
Yahoo is the easier answer. To get into their directory you have to submit manually, but they draw their search engine results from Google. Google also supplies data to other engines, so a page indexed there will get you listed everywhere they supply data, but again, their submission process is manual not automatic. Looksmart is at present charging you to get listed, so no one can truly guarantee you a listing for your site without paying a fee.

Should you believe the company which claims submission to 1000 search engines? It depends. How many bottles of snake oil would you like?

Webmaster's Corner - Team Development
Team Development is an important aspect of web design. If you are in a position of delegation on large website projects, you know it is becoming increasingly difficult to "do it all." Does your HTML person have to know Flash, Perl, and My SQL or should you allow a broader base of people to work on more focused tasks?

Of course, budget plays an important role in all of this, but let's pretend for the sake of this article that money is no object - Yeah right! So, on your Utopian Programming Team, where do you draw the line between three jobs for one person, or three people for one job? The answer is very simple. Ask them! That's right, ask your team where their comfort levels are and then lead them in a direction which will enhance their current skill sets. If you always operate along this line of thinking, you will ensure your team is happy and capable of doing the job and willing to enhance their knowledge base at the same time.

In the end, if you've managed to deliver a highly polished, functional website on time, you've done your job well. If you've managed to do this AND ensure your workers are not burned out for the next project, you are a delegation master... And should be remunerated as such!

Systems Administration - Backup or Step Back
Data protection is likely the most important consideration for any business, especially on-line businesses. As e-companies are mostly comprised of virtual space, (websites) the bulk of the corporate entity exists as simple files on a computer. If those files were somehow destroyed you would be out of business instantly..... Unless you have a backup of all your files. How those files were destroyed is irrelevant, it's enough that it's possible and could happen.

Implement a backup system. You may think that your hosting company or ISP maintains backups of your website and associated files, however you shouldn't rely on a third party to protect your data. You suffer from its loss, not the hosting company or ISP. Backup solutions such as internal tape drives, CD writers and rewriters are becoming more and more affordable to everyone. Tape drives are large enough to allow you to backup entire hard drives. Plus, most backup software supports network connections, which allow you to backup multiple machines in your network with a single machine.

Just remember how much time it took to foster your idea, collect the data, and build the website. Think what it would feel like to do it all again? A backup system is like home security for your e-business. It lets you sleep at night.

Web Resource of the Month - This month's featured site:
  • Wilson Internet
    Dr. Ralph Wilson is a respected Internet marketing guru with a huge following. Almost every aspect of net marketing is covered on this excellent website. His "Web Marketing Today®" newsletter boasts a readership in the hundreds of thousands. He knows a good marketing solution when he sees one. Dr. Wilson reviewed Metamend's Services. The review will appear in a future issue of Web Marketing Today® but you can get a sneak preview by visiting here.
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Best Regards from the Staff at Metamend.

Metamend: Innovative web site optimization and marketing service which automatically corrects keywords and meta tags increasing web site relevance and popularity within search engines.