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500 million ways to make money on facebook[team nanban][tpb]


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  1. 1. >> Comparison Shopping Engines, p.44 >> Testing Web Navigation, p.12500 MillionWays to MAKE MONEY from Facebook>> Web Hosting Behind the Scenes>> Principles of Design>> Mobile MarketingPLUS: Top 50Online VideoResourcesNOVEMBER 2010$6.99 US $7.99 CANADA
  2. 2. Now that’s a bright idea!Focus on your website, not your servers.Your business needs efficient, reliable server solutions to support a wide range ofapplications—multimedia, database, or high-volume transactions—on multiple platforms.Need maximum uptime? Live U.S.-based 24/7/365 customer carehas you covered. Our Solution Advisors can help youput together a dedicated or managed hostingsolution allowing you to focus on what’simportant, your business.Build your business at www.codero.com1.877.999.2701Server SolutionsCodero 2010. All Rights Reserved. 11.WM.10
  3. 3. 29 Cover Story500 Million Waysto Make Money from FacebookWith the largest social network now exceeding halfa billion users, Web businesses have an enormousopportunity to monetize their marketing efforts. 26 Web Hosting Behind the Scenes Departments From the cloud to high-speed media delivery, discover what a Web host is truly capable of doing for your website. 6 ‘Net Briefs: Google Instant, Yahoo! Mail, The OAuth Debate, Ping’s Launch, 32 Optimal Browser Performance Going Local, Facebook Places The cost of less than optimal browser performance has never been higher for Web professionals, so take control of your site 8 Mobile Minute: A New26 and your users’ experiences. Tablet, Mobile Ads, Twitter Apps 36 Your Website as a Customer Intelligence Tool 12 Small Business Lab: Internet businesses are armed with a powerful tool for gaining Testing Web Navigation deep insight into customer attitudes – their own websites. 16 Top 50: Video Resources 38 Easy and Effective Keyword Research Take advantage of these research tools and tips to discover 18 SEO Corner: Local SEO all of your competitors’ top converting keywords, and use them to improve your own campaigns. 20 Conversion Cache: Building Online Trust36 40 Mobile Marketing 22 Findability Makeover: While still in the early stages of its development, mobile adver- The Perfect Domain? tising presents the biggest opportunities for marketers who can grow with the emerging technologies. 47 Website Magazine Success Corner 42 Principles of Design 48 Commentary: The Big There are four essential elements required for creating capti- Advantage of a Small Business vating websites that produce the very best results. 44 Comparison Shopping Engines40 For building brand awareness and reaching more customers, being visible on comparison shopping search engines is a merchant’s best bet. 2 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  4. 4. ✐ F R O M T H E E D I TO R With Peter Prestipino Inside the Online World The Magazine for Website Success In 2005, at ad:tech NewYork, Website Magazine officially launched. 999 E. Touhy Ave., Des Plaines, IL 60018 In the five years since then we have come to be known worldwide Toll Free: 1.800.817.1518 as a respected and reliable resource for Web professionals; helping International: 1-773-628-2779 Fax: 1-773-272-0920 well over 100,000 websites become more successful. We are, after all, “The Magazine for Web Success. ” PUBLISHER: The best part of Website Magazine, however, is our audience. By sharing Susan Whitehurst your insights, questions and criticisms along the way, this publication has become more valuable than we ever thought possible. EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Thank you. The future is bright and we know the next five years will be Peter Prestipino even better than the first. Our November 2010 issue is a testament to the quality of insights, techniques, commentary and tactics we continue to bring SENIOR EDITOR:Visit these our readers each month. Mike Phillipsupcoming The feature story in our inaugural issue was “Yahoo! vs. Google” and mike@websitemagazine.comindustry highlighted some of the key differences between those two search shows: The Web has changed dramatically since then, however, and while Google ASSOCIATE EDITOR: and Yahoo! still deserve their share of attention and respect, there are new Linc WonhamSearch Engine players in the power struggle for users’ attention. linc@websitemagazine.comStrategiesOctober 18-22 If there’s one hot trend on the Web these days, it’s social networking, *CONTRIBUTORS:Chicago, IL specifically Facebook. And if our readers want to know one thing about Tim Ash Facebook, it’s how to make money using it. Contributor Jay Feitlinger shares Guillermo Cedilload:tech his insights into how to make that happen with 500 Million Ways to Make Mike EvansNovember 2-4 Money From Facebook. Jay FeitlingerNew York, NY In addition to this article, our regular monthly contributors Tim Ash, Jamie Fortunaso Heather Lutze and Dante Monteverde are joined by Mathew Poepsel, dis- Darren GuarnacciaPubCon West Heather LutzeNovember 8-11 cussing browser performance, Darren Guarnaccia, addressing websites as a Dante A. MonteverdeLas Vegas, NV customer intelligence tool, Guillermo Cedillo on the Principles of Design, Matthew Poepsel Jamie Fortunaso sharing insights on mobile marketing and returning con-Interactive Local tributor and Website Magazine reader favorite Mike Evans, on keyword re- ART DIRECTOR:Media 2010December 7-9 search techniques. Jesse Erbach Enjoy this issue of Website Magazine and share your stories of ‘Net suc- jesse@websitemagazine.comSanta Clara, CA cess online at PRODUCTION MANAGER: Janet Crouch Best Web Wishes, BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT/ADVERTISING: Troy Pickett Peter Prestipino — Editor-in-Chief, Website Magazine Kelly Springer Website Magazine On Your iPad Website Magazine, Volume 5, November 2010, (ISSN# 1942- 0633) is published 4 times per year in February, May, August and November with 8 special issues (January, March, April, June, July, Website Magazine is set to release an application for the iPad in September, October and December) by Website Services, Inc., 999 E. Touhy Ave., Des Plaines, IL 60018. Periodicals Postage Paid the coming months. As one of the first print publications to put its at Bolingbrook, IL and at additional mailing offices. POSTMAS- TER: Send address changes to Website Magazine, 999 E. Touhy content on this revolutionary new device, we’d like your feedback. Ave., Des Plaines, IL 60018. Canada Post: Please send undeliverable items to: 2835 Kew Drive, To receive advance notification of the app’s availability, visit Windsor ON, N8T 3B7 Copyright 2010 by Website Magazine. All rights reserved. Mate- rials may not be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission. For reprints of any article, contact the editor. *The opinions expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of WebsiteMagazine. 4 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  5. 5. The Yahoo’s OAuth New Flavor Debate Facing increased competition from Gmail, Hotmail and Twitter recently disabled the basic name and social networks such password authentication for its API, instead requiring that all third- as Facebook, party app developers use the OAuth protocol for user authentica- Yahoo! is planning to revamp tion. The move was not unexpected, having been first announced its Web-based e-mail back in December, but it has still proved to be a divisive issue service. Internally code-named “Minty”, the throughout the Twitter developer community. The question is one new product is expected to arrive in the fall with a sleeker design, higher performance of security and whether OAuth authentication — which does not capabilities and better integration with social require the transfer of credentials to a third party – is, in fact, more networking sites. Still the leading e-mail secure than Basic authentication, which does require users to sub- service in the U.S. with more users than Gmail and Hotmail combined, Yahoo! Mail saw its mit their names and passwords to a third-party service for au- numbers drop from 107 million visitors in thentication. The debate will undoubtedly rage indefinitely, but August 2009 to 97 million in August 2010. Twitter’s decision is indicative of a larger movement on the social The outlook is worse overseas, where Yahoo! Mail users have fallen off by 7 percent while Web to do away with Basic authentication forever. Gmail has grown 22 percent and Hotmail has grown by 3 percent in the past year. INSTANT REACTION Google’s recent announcement of its new real-time search feature, Google Instant, has elicited a mixture of responses throughout the Web industry. Microsoft and Yahoo! both predictably downplayed the significance of streaming search results, citing their own previous experiments with the technology as indications that Instant is not nearly as revolutionary as Google claims. Regardless, search times of two to five seconds faster per query is what the world’s most popular search engine has given us — and that alone changes the game. Now it is left to search marketers and website owners to react and adapt accordingly, as the industry — and Google — have conditioned us to do.6 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  6. 6. ’S PAINS Apple introduced its iTunes-based social network for music fans, Ping, in September, providing the usual fanfare for the highlighted feature of iTunes 10. The public seemed to embrace it with the same zeal it has for most Apple products, attracting more than 1 million registered users in just a couple of days. Big-name artists such as Lady Gaga and Jack Johnson were quick to adopt the network, but the early stages of its develop- ment have not been without fault or criticism — also familiar trademarks of many Apple launches. A dispute with Facebook led to a lack of connectivity between the two networks, upset- ting users of both sites; the inaccessibility of Ping by lesser- known independent artists has irked many more users, and the site was overrun by spam and phishing scams in its first week. Local Geotargeting Pride Gone Wrong The late-summer launch of Facebook Places gave the location- based services vertical another shot in the arm, driving high num- bers of traffic to competing check-in services such as Foursquare, Gowalla, Loopt and a host of others. Web marketers and e-com- merce retailers are hard at work trying to devise the best strategies for leveraging these services into online sales conversions, but they are not the only ones looking to cash in on Internet users’ location Borrell Associates is predicting that total online ad data. A home burglary ring in New England was initially suspected spending in the U.S. will grow nearly 14 percent in 2011, of being linked to the with the most significant growth to occur in local online Facebook Places advertising. That figure is expected to rise 18 percent feature, in which users from $13.7 billion to $16.1 billion next year, but the inadvertently alerted percentages for each market vary widely across the the bad guys that their country. Borrell has, however, identified the three homes were unoccu- following markets that will lead the way for local online pied while they ad growth at 22 percent or higher: 1. Monroe, LA/El checked in to various Dorado, AR; 2. Albany/Schenectady, NY, and 3. Des locations around town. Moines/Ames, IA. Bringing up the rear at less than 14 percent growth are 1. Lafayette, IN; 2. Fairbanks, AK, and 3. Ft. Smith/Fayetteville/Springdale/Rogers, AR.8 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  7. 7. wm mobile [minute ] Taking Flight The number of users accessing Twitter from their mobile devices has grown more than 60 percentMove since the middle of April, accord- ing to the network’s own data.over, iPad More than three out of four users still visit Twitter through the website, but the rate of mobileAfter months of enjoying virtual ownership of the tablet growth is significant. Twitter re-computer market, Apple will finally get to see how consumers ported that 46 percent of its ac-react to the first legitimate competitors to the iPad. Samsung’s Galaxy Tab was set for tive users make regular use ofEuropean release in mid-September, with the Android-powered mobile devices ex- the social network through theirpected to land in the U.S. by the holidays. If Samsung reaches its goal of shipping 10 mil- mobile devices, and 16 percentlion units by the third quarter of 2011, it will give the Galaxy one-third of the worldwide of all new users rely on theirtablet market now belonging solely to the iPad — with an array of new tablets scheduled mobile devices exclusively. That number was a paltry 5 percentfor release throughout the next year. With an expected lower price point and rear- and back in the spring, indicating afront-facing cameras, the slightly smaller Galaxy may provide a viable alternative for 62-percent increase in mobileusers and add some intrigue to the mobile marketplace. traffic to Twitter in the few short months since the launch of its own branded mobile apps. Your Ad Here Much attention has been given to Gartner’s and other recent forecasts that by 2014 the Android mobile operating system will have climbed all the way into a virtual tie with Symbian for the best-selling worldwide mobile OS. A less-discussed set of data, but one that may hold stronger interest for Web marketers, breaks down the advertising click- through rates for each of the leading mobile operating systems. In that category, Symbian remains the runaway leader through August 2010 while Android sits in a very distant last place. The data provided by mobile ad service Smaato indicates that Symbian users are by far the most likely to click on ads displayed on their smart- phones, followed by users of regular mobile phones with Internet access, iPhones and iPads, Microsoft Windows devices, RIM devices and, finally, Android users. N OV E M B E R 2010 | | 9
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  10. 10. WEBSITE MAGAZINE’SSMALL BUSINESS LAB TESTING WEBSITE NAVIGATION By Peter Prestipino, Editor-in-Chief Of all the elements that can be tested on a website, few are more important than testing the efficiency of your navigation elements. Navigation is an essential element of the Web, capable of (and with fewer clicks) when designing website navigation providing a vastly improved experience for users and influ- and structure will improve the information-seeking experi- encing several key performance indicators. While it may not ence and make a positive impact on key performance indi- be as exciting an element to test as pricing, it does carry cators like time-on-site and bounce rate — important major influence on creating a meaningful interaction for factors in everything from advertising metrics to SEO. The Web users and a profitable one for your Web enterprise. point is, even if you’re not committed to running elaborate Information portals and e-commerce sites are those that tests on navigation, do recognize the importance of helping may benefit most from testing navigation. Groups or individ- users get what they want. uals focused exclusively on landing page optimization should certainly be concerned with and consider testing navigation, How to Test Website Navigation but when the notion of “conversion” rules the focus of every If you are committed to testing navigation but have not yet, page, calls-to-action and other elements (e.g. imagery) that aid selected a vendor (and don’t want to run manual tests) in the conversion process often take precedence. However, know that there are a variety of site testing tools available. navigation should never be an afterthought, as it is an element Forrester’s recently published report on online testing plat- that can undoubtedly move users closer to the end of the sales forms reviewed the top nine players in the space which in- funnel, even from a very specific landing page. cluded Adobe Test & Target, Amadesa Customer Experience Suite, Autonomy Optimost, Google Website Optmizer, Informed, Educated Testing Maxymiser Content MVT, SiteSpect, Vertster Conversion Op- Depending on your website’s audience, understand that the timization Suite and Webtrends Optimize. Forrester indicated navigation menu experience will change dramatically from that Adobe Test & Target (formerly Omniture) and Auton- site to site. You may find with a younger, hipper audience omy Optimost were placed as the leaders — Adobe Test & that users will prefer rollover menus but detest auto- Target excels in overall application usability, customer expanding menus. You may find with far older audiences satisfaction and content support, while Autonomy stands that text-style menus outperform Flash and hyper-sensitive out in administration, deployment options and breadth of test- flyout menus. While you can certainly make some broad ing techniques. guesses as to what will perform best, only testing will ensure While free site testing tools such as Google Website Opti- the best experience for your audience and, therefore, the best mizer are attractive to many, other Web professionals demand opportunities for conversion. more and these commercial vendors all provide competitive and effective solutions. Know in advance, however, that in- Commit to Testing vesting in any testing platform can be costly and time con- Users must be able to easily find their way through a web- suming. The cost of experimenting often depends on the site from every page, ultimately reaching the information amount of traffic pages receive, the complexity of experiments they want or need quickly. It’s hard to take a different point and, in some instances, the difference in conversion rates for of view. When testing, both designers and site owners must your combinations. As such, know how these site testing ven- understand users’ expectations of their website navigation. dors charge for their services and, based on your own needs, Finding a way to provide easy access to what users want determine if using their services is necessary or warranted. Continue on page 14 12 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  11. 11. The new VeriSignTruST Seal.TruST iSn’T The onlyThing iT deliVerS.The most trusted mark on the Internet now delivers more. Display it on your siteto deliver more transactions. Add it to search results for more click-throughs andsite traffic. Deliver more peace of mind at every point of your customer’s onlineexperience. Learn how displaying the VeriSign seal increases online transactionsan average of 24 percent at© 2010 Symantec Corporation. All rights reserved. Norton is the trademark and the Checkmark Circle logo is the registered trademark of SymantecCorporation. VeriSign, the VeriSign logo, VeriSign Trust and other related marks are the registered trademarks of VeriSign, Inc. and licensed toSymantec Corporation. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.
  12. 12. WEBSITE MAGAZINE’SSMALL BUSINESS LAB Continue from page 12 With a little virtual elbow grease and some organization you products and services. By not forcing visitors to scroll down can test navigation elements without these vendors, over time, to navigate further into your site, the result might ultimately to the same effect. be increased page views and time-on-site. Keep in mind that should you opt to use graphics in the header of the page, con- What to Test sider testing navigation above and below the primary graphic. Once it has been determined how you will test your website’s Navigation design trends today often include primary navi- navigation (manually or by using a testing service), it is time gation bundled with images and calls to action, but providing to decide what you will be testing. A few of the more mean- a simple navigation path should still be tested. ingful options you can select from the start include location, While horizontal navigation is quite common today, that descriptions and functionality. has not always been the case — it used to be that left-of-page navigation was the most common location. As design has ma- Location — Web users are an impatient lot, and they will not tured and evolved, navigation location has increasingly taken spend time on your site if they can’t find what they want. As on new forms and should be audience-appropriate. such, navigation should be a prominent element of your de- sign. But what is the optimal location for navigation? Only TEST THIS: When it comes to the location of navigation el- testing will reveal the answer. ements, consider testing new areas entirely (right-hand or The most common location for primary navigation is hor- left-hand navigation) or testing the presence of secondary izontally, across the top of the page. The advantage of using navigation elements in various locations around the page navigation elements in this location is that it provides addi- (the footer, for example) to determine if the presence in- tional room for content and other relevant information about creases page views or sales. Let Them Eat Breadcrumbs! Breadcrumb navigation is a secondary navigation method (as opposed to primary naviga- tion, which includes native navigation menus and site search) that provides users a single line of text to show a page’s location in the site hierarchy. Breadcrumb navigation is very helpful for users as it provides one-click access to higher-level pages, preventing them from getting lost while reducing a website’s bounce rate. Breadcrumb navigation is definitely an element that can be tested. Not only can you test the presence and location of breadcrumb navigation, you can also test its formatting. For exam- ple, test the actual character separator. Instead of using a double forward arrow, test a long dash between sections. You could also test formatting in other ways. Take a look at the dif- ference between how and present their breadcrumb navigation. 14 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  13. 13. Website MagazineDescriptions — A website’s section names, par-ticularly as labeled in the navigation, should >>>Resource Centerclearly state what the user can expect after the FINELY-FOCUSED INFORMATION FROM INDUSTRY SPONSORSclick. General words like “resources” or “tools”are far too ambiguous and should be avoided. Website Magazine’s Resource Center presents white papers andUsing generic terminology tends to lead users towander, and away from the conversion path we videos from our sponsors that provide information, specifics, andhave set forth. metrics to help you make decisions for website success. Download free at THIS: Test reducing or increasing theamount of text in primary navigation. De-pending on the makeup of the audience, theymay need more or less descriptive text — you Pay-Per-Click Search Enginewon’t know unless you test. Best practice guid-ance teaches us to settle on four to six primarysections of your website (and thus silo-ing ex-isting content under these channels) and tofocus on the naming conventions (keyword-rich, of course) of those navigation links. Thiswill offer users faster, more accurate access tothe information they want.Functionality — As important as where youplace your navigation elements and the clarityof the text individual navigational links pro-vide is the functionality of the navigation menu Pay-Per-Click Campaign Don’t Leave Leaditself. Web designers have a variety of options Aids Online Marketing Generation to Chanceavailable to them when it comes to navigation PPC advertising leads the way in Most important to successfunctionality — from mouseover effects to drop- returns on your investment in in lead generation is buildingdowns, to nested menus and more. For some marketing on the Internet. Here’s relationships with business how to achieve maximum results partners you can trust. Learnideas, look into Javascript libraries such as via a 2nd-tier PPC network. how to manage campaignsjQuery, Mootools, prototype or Sponsored by with a simple platform, re- move clutter and save money.TEST THIS: Testing the functionality of your Sponsored by Integratenavigation will yield results. What should betested is how certain effects impact key per-formance indicators, such as page views. Con-sider tracking how users interact with differentnavigation functionality by recording their vis-its — two services to consider include and Testing TodayDesigning for users is important. Web designersneed to provide visiting audiences with what theyexpect in a clear and compelling manner. Thebattle line is navigation. While the attraction to-ward using elaborate or intricate navigation is un-derstandable, the goal is always to provide userswith access to the information the website pro- Use Email Metrics to Identify Behavioral Targetingvides. Users do not have the patience or time to Best Customers Email Campaignslearn more intricate navigation, so focus on cre- Find the value of your email Done correctly, retargetingating an experience that is both instinctive and subscribers, their levels of campaigns are the mostnatural. Complicated and difficult-to-use naviga- engagement and purchase engaging messages you cantion makes users feel uneasy and apprehensive intent. Email data helps you deploy in email marketing.about a website and will negatively influence identify top customers and Here’s how to make the mostconversion. So start testing navigation today and reach out to inactive ones. of profiling and customer be- Sponsored by Listrak haviors. Sponsored by Listrakfind out what works for your audience. N OV E M B E R 2010 | | 15
  14. 14. 50The market for video TO P VIDEO TOOLS, DESTINATIONS AND RESOURCES WEBSITES 1. 2. 3. 4. is vast and online 5. metacafe.comvideo usage continues In mid-July, Nielsen reported that 6. more than 10.2 billion videos 7. its meteoric growth. were streamed in the U.S. alone 8. in June 2010, a 1.3 percent increase over the number of 9. streams year-over-year and a near 4 percent increase over the 10. previous month ( Video is big business 11. and as users expect more from the ’Net experience, new de- 12. mands will be placed on Web professionals. 13. The list of benefits that video marketing provides is long 14. and the proof extensive. For instance, retail site visitors who 15. view video stay two minutes longer, on average, and are 64 16. percent more likely to purchase than other site visitors 17. (comScore, August 2010). When used in e-mail marketing, 18. video has been shown to increase click-through rates by 19. more than 96 percent. (Implix 2010 Email Marketing Trends 20. Survey). Rich media ads containing video increase purchase 21. intent by 1.16 percent and drive success more than four 22. times that of Flash animation (DoubleClick, The Brand 23. Value of Rich Media Ads, June 2009). If video impacts the 24. e-commerce, e-mail and design industries, count on it im- 25. pacting your industry vertical as well. 26. However, many questions about the efficacy of video 27. marketing and development remain. Does 28. (#5) offer a realistic portal for your video marketing ideas? 29. What about user-generated video aggregators, such as 30. YouTube (#1) or MegaVideo (#7), where users are consum- 31. ing the majority of video content today? This edition of Website Magazine’s Top 50 offers a look 32. at the leading destinations and vendors in the video space. 33. You will find services that enable live broadcasting, like 34. (#10) and (#8), right alongside emerg- 35. ing video destinations like (#16), and tools 36. like TwitVid (#41). 37. Are you considering adding video to your list of sales 38. and marketing resources? Let this list be a starting point to 39. finding the top tools, resources and destinations in the video 40. landscape for your business. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. ABOUT THIS RANKED DATA 46. Website Magazine’s Top 50 Rankings are measures of a website’s popularity. Ranks 47. are calculated using a proprietary method that focuses on average daily unique vis- its and page views over a specified period of time, as reported by multiple data 48. sources. The website with the highest combination of factors is ranked in the first 49. position. Conducting research, making formal comparisons and talking to existing clients and users before making any purchase decision is always recommended. 50. 16 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  15. 15. Discover the ‘Net’ popularity of the top 1 million websites with and leverageone of the largest databases of FREE Web metrics available. Review traffic history, detailedwebsite information and search by country, language and category absolutely FREE. Whatpossibilities does your website have? Visit today! Visit to check out Access full website details such as YOUR website ranking phone number & address Research websites by country, View website trust scores from language & category TrustGuageTM FREE ranking report by e-mail Submit and modify your website’s listing anytime
  16. 16. SEO CORNER With Dante A. Monteverde LOCAL SEARCH PROFILE OPTIMIZATION Local search queries— Not only are local listings gain- ranking factor when it comes to local search. Make sure to those including a specific ing valuable real estate on the include as much information as possible, including longi- search results pages, locally fo- tudinal and latitudinal data. geographic location — cused websites are appearing are becoming Business Category: Make sure your business is categorized with more frequency for non- immensely important correctly — if secondary category choices are available, select specific search phrases as well, a few over time to see which ones positively influence your in website marketing. thanks in part to Google In- position and traffic. stant and the real-time nature Dante A. Monteverde of today’s Web. So what can Business Name: Consider your business name the <Title> is a search strategist you do to leverage this growth? Tag of your local profile listing. When you have a keyword(s) specializing in Search Hopefully you have already 1) claimed your business list- in your business name it will help improve ranking, but it is Engine Optimization. ing and/or submitted your website to online services like not necessary (or advised) to saturate the listings with key- He founded Google Places and, among the many others (listed words. For example, if you own a hamburger restaurant in here —, 2) promoted your website and named Chuck’s and your local listing displays only “Chuck’s”, 1996 and has more brand on social destinations like Facebook and Twitter, and 3) consider changing the listing to “Chuck’s Hamburger Restau- than 12 years of SEO experience. become involved with location-aware applications like rant”. Many people will use the keywords “hamburger restau- Contact Dante at Foursquare and Gowalla. rant” to search for your All of these channels present excellent ways of getting local search traffic to your website. But often overlooked Citations: Citations are when your business is mentioned are the factors that influence how profile pages from these (but not necessarily linked to) elsewhere on the Web. Cita- Web services are returned to users. Actively optimizing tions are like links, in that the more you have the better. Ci- local search profiles improves search engine rankings and tations build trust with the search engines and give you a the chances that your website will appear in the first few boost when it comes to ranking, especially with Google Maps. positions on local query results. You can see your citations on your Google Places page under “What people are saying about”. Check out the competition About Profile Optimization and make sure you make an attempt to get citations from the While not technically a page on your website, claiming and same or related sources. validating local listings on Google, Bing and Yahoo! can drive Reviews and Ratings: Not only will good reviews and ratings high-quality, targeted traffic and help your site rank higher have a positive effect on your local listing ranking, it will also within local search results. While help the click-through rate of your listing. Encourage existing unclaimed local listings can clientele to submit reviews and ratings and reward them when sometimes outrank claimed local they do. More information listings, it is still vital to claim Learn about on-page local search your profiles as it gives you com- Complete Profiles: Take time to fill out your local business optimization at plete control of what is displayed profile pages completely. Add business hours, payment op- or search for “On-Page SEO for Local to users and prevents someone tions and craft a well-written description of your business. Search” at else from claiming your listings Even add pictures and videos if you have them. Also, be sure (and reputation). that the information on your local listing pages is consistent Here are the major ranking factors to consider when build- across all directories. ing your local search engine pages: Remember to claim and submit your website to the pri- Location (Address): Does your business address need to be in mary local providers ( and test different the actual city of the search query to rank? For the most part, profile information combinations to see what influences yes, particularly if you are located in a large city. There are return list position and website traffic. While often tedious to some exceptions for smaller towns — if there are not enough complete and validate (and for some, to create unique land- matches then the search engine may take results from neigh- ing pages for each business location), these efforts will more boring towns. But your business’ physical location is a major than pay for themselves in the form of quality local traffic. 18 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  17. 17. new yorkNOVEMBER 3-4, 2010 | JAVITS CONVENTION CENTER THESE COMPANIES ATTEND AD:TECH: 1-800-FLOWERSconference expo power of place 5TH FINGER ADPProviding brand Providing marketers a The biggest andmarketers, agencies, highly efficient “one-stop” best marketplace AKQApublishers and service opportunity to compare for digital marketing AMAZONproviders unparalleled and contrast the best experts —ad:tech AT&Tforums for ideas, along tools, services, and New York 2009 BABYCENTERwith expert-led tracks partners in hours broke every record. CBS INTERACTIVEand networking. instead of weeks. CODA DISCOVER EASTMAN COMPANY EDMUNDS.COM FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSIONSir Martin Sorrell, WPP Early Bird GEad:tech New York 2009 pricing LENOVO ends LINKEDIN 9/24 LOEWS MICROSOFT MINDSHARE NBA NOKIA OFFICE DEPOT OGILVY RAZORFISH SAATCHI & SAATCHI SITEWIRE T3 THOMSON REUTERS TRAVELERS US AIRWAYS WELLS FARGO XEROX
  18. 18. CONVERSION CACHE With Tim Ash The Four Pillars of Building Instant Trust Online Human beings Without trust, we would be con- • Sparseness and neatness: Clutter can be your worst are social creatures enemy — whether it is visual embellishments, or dense, signed to a world where we exam- that seek out ine everyone’s actions with longwinded text. Less is more. Ruthlessly edit everything companionship suspicion, and assume they are on the page until it is pared to its essence and has a natu- working only for their own pur- ral and unforced feel. Give your page room to breathe. and relationships. poses. But because of the sheer • Organization & clarity: Too many choices on the page We crave trust. number of social interactions we can be paralyzing. Similarly, a disorganized page increases Tim Ash is CEO of have with complete strangers, we the visitor’s cognitive load and forces them to spend time, a must at least extend some trust on simply trying to figure out how they should digest the in- landing page a regular basis. Otherwise, many acts, both small and mo- formation that you have presented. As the title of Steve optimization firm that mentous, simply could not happen. Krug’s excellent book on Web usability so elegantly puts offers conversion Even with total strangers in the “real world”, we at least it, “Don’t Make Me Think”. consulting, full-service have appearance and body language to discern some level of guaranteed-improve- trust. Online, we are at a disadvantage. Almost anyone can Transactional Assurances ment tests, and quickly create a website or landing page and masquerade as a Will we be spammed if we enter our e-mail into a form? tools to improve wide variety of businesses. Additionally, we are often barraged Will the goods promised ever be delivered after we orderconversion. SiteTuners’ in the media about various scams perpetrated online. So, we from an online catalog? Will our identity be stolen? Such interactive Express already have our guard up. questions are always in the background when we navigate Reviews of a landing As an online marketer, your job is very difficult compared around the Web. page can quickly to your bricks-and-mortar counterparts. You must not only identify major overcome anxieties, but do so in the most challenging of cir- Relieve point-of-action anxieties before they ariseconversion issues. Ash cumstances. The mechanics of the conversion action matter. Whether you is a frequent speaker Online trust must be developed without face-to-face con- are trying to collect an e-mail for an online newsletter or have at Internet marketing tact, and it must be created instantly in the few precious sec- someone purchase an expensive item, reassurances are conferences. He is a onds it takes a website visitor to evaluate your value needed about the transaction. contributing columnist proposition. to several industry So how can you build instant trust online? • Forms of payment and delivery: Many e-commerce cat- publications and alogs only show acceptable forms of payment and return websites, and is also Appearance policies after the checkout process has been started. In fact, the author of the best- First impressions matter. Recent research indicates that peo- they must be seen before they are needed and prominently selling book “Landing ple will form an initial impression of your landing page or displayed above the fold on every page. The same is true Page Optimization.” website within 50 milliseconds. This is almost as fast as visual of well-known delivery and shipping methods. processing happens in the brain, and can be considered as an • Data security and privacy: The website must be certified instantaneous and automatic response. This initial reaction as “safe” by outside experts in terms of its ability to protect then extends to a more considered review of the page and will data. Having privacy policies and computer security trust- impact our likelihood of taking the desired conversion action. marks from well-known vendors will instantly show someone that you have safeguarded their data properly. Don’t get disqualified based solely on your • Policies and guarantees: Often, the transaction is not at site’s appearance issue. It is what happens afterwards that concerns people. We prefer well-dressed and groomed job candidates. We try to By prominently featuring warranties, return policies and put our best foot forward on first dates. The same should be guarantees, you can assuage these anxieties. A visual seal done online. can be created to draw the eye to these important elements. • Professionalism of design: Regardless of the intended audience or your business purpose, the visual design of Experts & Media your website should be professionally executed. It must Your visitors are not likely to have heard of your brand. Un- hang together and function as a unified whole. Fonts, col- less you represent a truly world-class consumer company, ors, and graphical elements must combine into a single people are unlikely to know your brand promise. They do visual “look.” not know what you stand for. 20 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  19. 19. “ First impressions matter. Recent research indicates that people will form an initial impression of your landing page or website within 50 milliseconds. This is almost as fast as visual processing happens in the brain, and can be ” considered as an instantaneous and automatic response.Borrow trust from better-known brands started a free trial. Numbers should be cumulative, start-• Reviews and awards: Many services and products have ing with the inception of the business or product. Spell won awards or at least been reviewed by relevant industry out the digits of each number (e.g. “Over 1,000,000 down- publications. Using the award seals or “reviewed by” lan- loads”), and use large fonts to draw additional attention. guage can be very effective. • Likeness: Create affinity by demonstrating that the people• Paid endorsements and spokespeople: Paid endorsements taking action are similar to your website visitors. This can can convey trust or at least transfer the celebrity of the be done by picking appropriate colors, editorial tone and spokesperson to the product or service in question. graphics to make your visitors feel at home. You can also have a large number of detailed testimonials that discuss• Marquee clients: Using client logos with permission or at common situations faced by similar people. least prominently featuring a written list of clients (unless specifically prohibited by contract language) will create Trust is a critical factor to transactional success, particu- powerful visual proof of your legitimacy. They confer an larly in an online environment. If you build on the four pil- implicit halo effect — if you have worked with large com- lars of trust outlined herein, you should have a solid panies, you can handle smaller “regular” ones. foundation for improved conversions.• Media Mentions: Media companies are experts at self-pro- motion. Any association with them confers a sense of no- toriety to your landing page. Often, media outlets can be broadly defined as bloggers or authoritative voices in your specific niche. Keep in mind that there are several caveats to using expertand media logos. They must appear above the fold and be seenat the same time as the call to action (not below or after it) inorder to provide context for the content on the page. On theother hand, they must be displayed subtly, as to not dominatethe visual conversation. The logos are often expertly designed,distinctive and instantly recognizable in order to draw atten-tion. So, you may need to actually de-emphasize their impactby reducing size, decreasing color saturation (possibly usinggrayscale) and decreasing contrast with the background colorchosen to display the logos.Consensus of PeersWe often follow the lead of people like ourselves. For exam-ple, if our circle of acquaintances turn us on to a new musicalgroup, we are more likely to listen. Regardless of the actualcultural tribes that we belong to, our peers exert a very stronginfluence on us.Support automatic complianceby demonstrating “social proof”There are two important preconditions for social proof to beeffective: 1) there must be many people who are taking a sim-ilar action and, 2) they must be as close to our own personasas possible.• Objective numbers: “The many” can be demonstrated by showing how many people have bought, downloaded, or N OV E M B E R 2010 | | 21
  20. 20. F I N DA B I L I T Y M A K E O V E R With Heather Lutze THE PERFECT DOMAIN? Should a business owner A domain is, after all, a Problem: treat a domain name just business’ own piece of In- You are presented with an opportunity to buy what you as important as a physical ternet real estate. It reflects think is the perfect domain to secure your brand and the ul- the brand and can even af- timate findability for your company. What process should business location or a fect the website’s ultimate be taken to determine if the domain should be acquired (and carefully crafted logo? findability. Many business for what price)? owners find themselves in a Heather Lutze has position to purchase that perfect domain, left to wonder about Action Plan: spent the last the value it could bring to the business as a whole ... and how much it might cost. 1. Source Search Data First 10 years helping Check search volume for validity of exposure, at the business owners get In the throes of a website rebuild project of our own, we same time checking your ego at the door. Use a trusted their enterprises have been carefully considering buying such a domain. So, I keyword tool such as Google’s External Keyword Tool noticed on the Web turned to, a domain brokerage company, for some ( by their target advice on how to approach this process. This tool is accessible through your Google Adwords audiences. She is the “Many domain buyers, especially first-time buyers, account but available to all, not just AdWords account hold- author of “The settle for a domain either because it’s inexpensive or because ers. Look at three key indicators after entering the proposed Findability Formula: it’s available to register on the spot — they often overlook domain name words: The Easy, Non- how valuable a domain name is to the success of their on- Technical Approach line business and therefore they underestimate the impor- Keyword and Related Phrases: Is your domain the only key- to Search Engine tance of their online real estate,” says Kathy Nielsen, word-driven domain that gets good search volume? Take a Marketing.” Visit director of North American sales, Sedo. “In fact, a domain look at other is exactly like physical real estate, in that location is to be Global Monthly Search Volume: How many searches each for tools and resources considered the most important factor in the investment month are actually conducted on that keyword phrase? Will to increase your process. Just like most shop owners would seek out Main this help SEO efforts at all? site’s findability. Street for their business location, an online business investor should look to find a name that is easy for potential cus- Exact match searches: Make sure to look at Exact searches tomers to find and short and descriptive enough for them for that phrase, not Broad Match. If someone types in the pro- to remember.” posed domain words exactly and it has high search volume, We see many companies attached to their legacy domains. this may be a good investment in a domain name presence. These domains were not necessarily picked for great search findability or for its easy-to-remember value but rather an 2. Get a Domain Name Appraisal “ego domain” with their business name only. In many cases, Run a domain appraisal report to know the current market a better domain could be a very real possibility. value of the domain. 22 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  21. 21. Sedo is one company that, for $40.00, will return a Any domain worth purchasing should be easy to remember andnon-biased report on the actual value of the domain. simple in nature.What factors are taken into consideration when valuing a • Example: or If you see this domaindomain name? on a billboard or a TV ad, will you remember to use the dash? “Factors such as the popularity of the terms used in the do- What if you don’t own Searchers will likely bemain, comparable sales, cost-per-click (CPC) keywords [in- misled or confused.cluded in the domain] and the length of the domainare all considered during an appraisal,” says Nielsen. “Of course, • Does your domain have a keyword phrase or productif a domain was previously being used by another business, the description in the domain? andadded value of established website traffic will also influence the are both longer domains but have apricing. Most importantly, an appraisal helps set a buyer’s expec- keyword imbedded into them. These domains point to a prod-tations and allows them to better budget for the right domain.” uct as an industry leader. Both domains make a promise to the Other available tools for domain valuation include, user as to what to expect on the site., however, and Using several tools offers a could be anyone or anything, not necessarily a product.good way to find an appropriate price range. Ultimately, however, adomain is as valuable as another party is willing to pay. Picking a domain can be as complicated (and stressful) as pick- ing the name of your company. If you keep these five key factors in3. Check Your Risk Factors mind when hunting for your perfect domain, you will be able to notMake sure you are not violating any trademark issues and expos- only weigh the hard numbers for search but also the long terming risk to your company — consider the consequences. You could emotional value of clean, elegant and high-valued domain namespend time and resources defending your right to own the domain, that will stand the test of time.and risk all of your work to build a brand to only give it away tothe rightful trademark holder. Check out Domain Law at Sedo.comand to check if the domain name is already trade-marked as a phrase. Sedo Domain Law: USPTO: Also, be sure to check for any owners of the secondary exten-sions of the domain name — such as .org, .net, .edu or .mobi. Doesthis pose a risk to future growth over time?4. Check Your WalletHow fast will you recover your investment with the new brightand shiny domain? How much is too much to pay?• How many sales, conversions or leads will you need to procure to make this investment worth the money, over time?• Can you afford the money right now in cash without putting it on a credit card or financing the amount for the domain? If the answer is “no”, then you are probably not at a time in your busi- ness where it makes sense to purchase the domain.• Does the domain name potentially become an asset of your company in the event that you sell at a later date? This may also bring inherent value to your overall business.• Will the domain’s history (specifically, inbound links) aid in your marketing efforts with the new site to be created under that domain?5. What is the Easiest User Experience?Think about your current marketing efforts in offline areas such asprint or radio. If you have a domain name with multiple keywordphrases or dashes, will this make it more difficult for the user/fu-ture searcher? Is the domain hard to remember or difficult to type? N OV E M B E R 2010 | | 23
  22. 22. WEB SCENESBEHIND THE HOSTING By Mike Phillips, Senior Editor Unless you work in the industry, nothing seems to change from year to year when it comes to Web hosting. However, the past several years have ushered in a new era. No longer just a place to store websites, hosting now impacts Web business as a whole; including e-mail, e-commerce, commu- nications, SEO and more. Two hosting trends in particular — hosting in the cloud, and content delivery networks — have quickly become hot issues in the industry. They are, in no uncertain terms, two of the biggest developments the hosting industry has seen in years. Let’s take a closer look at both of these issues. It will not only help in understanding the current environment, but prepare you for what to expect the next time your company wants to address Web hosting in the boardroom. SaaS in the Cloud When discussing “the cloud” in the hosting industry, inevitably the term Software as a Serv- ice (SaaS) will also come up. In fact, it is SaaS that brings the most value to website owners. In short, the cloud offers software on demand — eliminating the need to store large amounts of data on-site which, for small businesses, can often be expensive and resource intensive. “The trend of cloud computing — that is, applications and infrastructure moving away from the desktop and a private data center and into the cloud — means that the playing field is being leveled and the barriers between these different service providers are being broken down,” says Seth Nesbitt, VP of marketing, Parallels, a hosting infrastructure provider. So how exactly can a website benefit from SaaS and cloud hosting? The services provided are numerous, and growing — from e-commerce functions such as shopping carts and SSL certification to business-class e-mail and full-blown Web conferenc- ing, Using the cloud, Web hosts can offer a range of business-critical services not previously available to any but the largest of businesses. This has taken the Web hosting industry from an afterthought to the realm of an essential business partner.Beyond Hosting Parallels provides back-end services to hosting providers. According to Nesbitt, they have seen tremendous growth in the communication services that they provide — specifically, e-Hosting providers are well on their way mail and Web conferencing. “We recently announced a new set of SaaS — one example is a Web conferencing serv-to becoming full-blown website archi- ice,” says Nesbitt. “Now, our Web hosters will be able to offer a very sophisticated Web andtects. 1&1, for example, now has solutions video conferencing service to their users.that offer standards such as e-mail “From your Web hosting vendor, you’re going to be able to portray your business as world- class — just like we’ve seen with the shopping cart and the shopping experience. This trend(including Microsoft Exchange and of cloud computing will arm small businesses with the tools to compete in a very competi-mail exchange) but also includes full tive marketplace.”e-commerce packages. A starter Still, many consumers are wary of hosting their businesses in the cloud. But, for many oth-package includes up to 50 products for ers, the bundled services are just too good to pass up. Often, obtaining these services from one provider can mean a lower price point than purchasing them individually. But more signifi-$4.99 per month, while an advanced cant is the ease of operation for Web professionals. Having several business-critical compo-package can include up to 20,000 prod- nents in one place, under one operator, removes much of the hassle and worry. In the cloud,ucts across 2,000 categories and even someone else is charged with updates, upgrades and system patches. What’s more, shouldoffer cross-selling capabilities. New to something go awry, the business owner often has one contact point to get the problem fixed. “We are very quickly approaching a tipping point,” says Nesbitt. “Let’s face it, it’s already1&1s offerings are a full website design here. Ten years from now, nobody is going to ask, ‘Should I host my own enterprise applica-service and mobile hosting. tion’ any more than you would ask, ‘Should I set up my own power generator?’ ”26 | | NOVEMB ER 2010
  23. 23. As users demand more thanever from the Web, theright hosting solutionhas become a criticalcomponent ofWeb success. OCT OB E R 2010 | | 27