Monday, April 14, 2008 by Mistlee


Keywords - Kingmakers of the Web

Posted: 14 Apr 2008 04:20 PM CDT

Unless you go the paid route with PPC advertising,
keywords or rather top keyword rankings will be the
most important factor in the success of your website
on the net. Not exactly breaking news but many webmasters
still don’t understand this simple fact.

Keywords rule the Internet.

Getting top rankings for profitable keywords will
make you king. Currently, there are countless kings
on the web ruling over massive listings of keywords
in some pretty obscure yet profitable niches. Since
there are millions upon millions of keyword phrases
out there - with more being born each day - anyone
with just a basic understanding of how keywords work
will be entitled to a crown.

How lucrative a kingdom you create will depend upon
your own work ethic and your knowledge of keyword
SEO techniques.

Basic Keyword Knowledge - Keys to the Kingdom

Keywords are the exact words someone types into a
search engine to find what they’re looking for on
the web. Obviously, there are millions, if not billions,
of possible keywords anyone can use. The trick for
the entrepreneurial webmaster is to find the profitable

First, these webmasters need to check to see the
number of visitors any given keywords receives in
a month. A keyword getting four or five clicks a
month is not worth considering unless it’s something
like “buying beachfront property in Malibu,” where
one click or prospect could lead to a sale and a
handsome commission.

Here’s an excellent site where you can some helpful
keyword research tools - including how to find the
number of searches made each month for a particular

Next you have to check to see how competitive your
keyword is. One simple way is to type your keyword
into Google and see how many pages are returned with
your keyword. It is usually in the millions. A more
precise way is to see how many of those pages have
your keyword in the title.

In Google, if you want to find competing sites that
have your keywords in the title, just use the allintitle

Just type into Google search:


Professional marketers will use keyword research
software that will make performing all these steps
much more easier - I personally use Brad Callen’s
Keyword Elite. Because most of my marketing is done
with organic SEO traffic, doing extensive keyword
research is essential for getting it right, plus it
saves me a lot of time.

Mainly Keyword Elite shows me what keywords I have
a chance of reaching with any one of my sites.
High-demand lucrative keywords are usually out of
my reach, unless I want to do months and months of
SEO work, and even then it will take deep pockets
to compete with large companies who can afford to
spend anything to get that top ranking.

Google may have cracked down on paid link buying
but anyone with enough resources can still buy
their way into any top spot for any keyword.
There are exceptions - I have been trying for
years to get top billing for “Google marketing”
- but all I could manage was second place.
Wonder why?

Finally, you have to consider how profitable the
keyword is? This can be the real breaking point
for most novice webmasters. You must be able to
turn your top keyword ranking into a profit. In
other words you must be able to convert your
keyword traffic into a sale. Get your visitor
to buy from your site or from an affiliate link
on your site.

This will usually require some serious testing
on your part. You must test to see if your
landing page or sales letter is converting.
I find one of the best tools for testing your
webpages is Google Analytics. It will give you
vital information on your site that you can use
to increase your conversions or tell what is
working and what is not working.

Like any professional marketer, I find and use
‘long tail keywords’ to make most of my income.
Long tail refers to keywords phrases that are well
long (three or more words), yet very profitable.
For example, someone searching for a particular
make or model of a product usually has their mind
made up and is seriously considering buying that
product. Someone searching for “2008 v-6 four-door
Honda Accord” is a more targeted visitor than someone
searching for “cars.”

The great beauty of Long Tail Marketing: there
is little competition for these keywords and
you can usually get a top ranking in Google
in a couple of days - make that hours if you’re
using blogging techniques.

Keyword Page Fundamentals - Jewels in the Crown

If you’re targeting certain keywords, it helps
if you create webpages that are search engine
friendly. Again, very simple stuff, but you would
be surprised how many webmasters don’t follow
these basic site elements when constructing
their sites.

Keywords 123 - Here are some things you should do:

1. Title Tag

The Title Tag is located at the top of your
HTML page and it tells all the search engines
what your page is about. When you open your
page in a browser these are the words at the
very top of the screen. Despite its simplicity,
the title tag is crucial to ‘on-page optimization’;
it should include your main keywords and it should
be 63 characters or less if you want your
title to appear in full on Google.

Many SEO experts create webpages in a three-prong
approach. They place the title (with the keywords)

- The title tag - on the webpage itself - and
in the URL for that page.

Sometimes they will just pick the main keywords
from the title and place them in the anchor url
instead. For example: www.

2. Meta Description Tag

The Meta Tag contains the description for your
webpage. Your description will show up in all the
search engines so you must be careful to write
precisely and objectively. It should be about
140 characters or around 20 words. Make
sure to include your keywords but don’t spam
- don’t repeat your keywords more than twice,
using variations is helpful.

Keep in mind, successful webmasters make their
descriptions stand out from the pack and entice
the surfer to click their link. Remember this
is your first contact with your potential
prospect so make a good first impression.

3. Anchor Tag or URL

The anchor tag is used to form links within
websites or from site to site. Your tag should
have your title or the main keywords from your
page title to be the most effective.

Anchor text is also important to know, these
are the underlined, clickable text or words
in a link. anchor text

If you want to check Google for all webpages
containing your keywords in the anchor tags,
just type into Google Search:


Of course, the best way to get high rankings
for your keywords is to build relevant quality
one-way links to the page that contains your
targeted keywords. Get enough of these quality
links with your keywords in the anchor text
and you will get top rankings. Again, provided
it is not an extremely competitive keyword.

Keyword Shortcuts - The Court Jesters

On the web, like in real life, there are always
shortcuts. No, I am not talking about any sneaky
“black hat” SEO tricks… the shortcuts here are
very legit and have to do with blogs.

Another way to crack the “keyword puzzle” is
simply to use a blog. I prefer the free blogging
software from WordPress since you can host these
blogs on your own site.

Blogs are perfect for keyword marketing. Only
with blogs, keywords are called “tags” but it
amounts to the same thing. With WordPress each
category will be considered a tag or keyword.
You can create a targeted page within your blog
for your chosen keyword or keywords within minutes.
Then you bookmark this page/tag/keyword in your
favorite bookmark sites like Digg,,
Furl, Propeller, Reddit, Slashdot, Stumbeupon…
don’t forget to ping/click your newly created
link to let all the search engines find your
keyworded page. WordPress will also automatically
ping your posts for you.

Blogging is a simple shortcut that can put you
on the fast track for earning on the web. The
great beauty of using blogs - you don’t need
to know anything about HTML or site design for
that matter, all of it is done for you. You can
pick out your template, edit your site heading,
side panels and your footer within a couple of
minutes… and you can have your blog/site up
and running in no time.

Simply tie in your blog with all these social
bookmark sites. Google likes these social media
sites; get a front page listing on Digg and your
keywords rankings will go to the top of Google’s
pages. I did manage to get on the front page of
Digg a little while back and my keywords instantly
rose to the top spot on Google. “Internet Facts”
but that’s another story for another time.

Online marketing can be as simple or as
complicated as you want to make it. I like
the complicated stuff myself, building numerous
sites, building links, building connections,
building patterns… but coming from an artist
background I am allowed to be more than a little

However, most people like to take the simple
route, so here’s a recent video I watched by
Nancy Andrews that explains how all this online
marketing stuff works… I hope you will notice
one important point that’s mentioned a couple
of times in the video… all this is so simple
yet there are still very few people doing it.
How true.

Always remember there are still a lot of crowns
out there going to waste. Why don’t you grab one?
Trust me, Kingdoms are so much fun to run.

Top Five Ways Your Virtual Assistant Can Help You Make More Money, Today!

Posted: 14 Apr 2008 10:39 AM CDT

webmasters.jpg The best decision you can make as an online business owner is to decide to get out of your own way and begin to delegate those tasks which really don’t require your time and attention. A simple way to do that is by hiring a virtual assistant.

A virtual assistant is a business owner who specializes in handling the administrative details of your business from the comfort of her home office. Now that virtual assistance has been around for awhile, you’ll find virtual assistants who specialize in different types of administrative services: real estate, Internet marketing, and event management, to name a few. You may actually discover that you could use several virtual assistants in your business, each with a different specialization.

I can hear you now. You’re thinking, “There’s no way anyone can do this as well as I can.”

Are you guilty of “I’ll-do-it-myself-itis? If so, you’ve got much in common with most other online business owners in the world. We never think that anyone else will give something the time, attention, and dedication that we will. And, you’re right, to some degree. No one cares as much about your business as you do. However, if you don’t choose to delegate those things that prevent you from engaging in business development, marketing, and sales activities, you won’t be in business very long.

Whether you’re just starting out or have been in business for awhile, the thought of bringing on a support team member can be daunting, and you wonder, “How can I bring in someone else when it’s just going to increase my expenses?”

You need to make the shift to seeing this cost as an investment in your business, rather than as an expense, and let go of the need to be in control.

To help you evaluate what you might delegate to an assistant, take out a piece of paper and on the left side write, “What I Love to Do” and on the right side write. “What I Don’t Like to Do”.

Then, think about all of the functions you manage and roles you perform in your business, like planning and setting strategy, marketing, providing the service or product in which you specialize, dealing with financial issues, speaking, writing, networking, customer service, order fulfillment, etc. Most of my clients have three or four items on the “What I Love to Do” side — speaking, coaching/consulting, training, and writing. The remainder of the other functions and roles fall on the other side. The items on the right hand side, the “What I Don’t Like to Do” list, will serve as a great indicator of the types of things you need to be delegating in your business.

Based on my past experience as a virtual assistant and online business manager for a number of clients, here are 5 tasks should delegate to your Virtual Assistant right away to help you begin to generate additional income in your business:

1. Ezine. An email newsletter will help you get prospective clients into your marketing funnel. Your VA can format the plain text and HTML versions of your email newsletter. All you need to do is write your primary and filler articles each week and forward those to your VA to format and send the finished product out to your newsletter list.

2. Media. Have your VA research an industry-specific media list . This value of this list is in developing relationships with these media contacts so that you’re the expert they immediately think of when they’re doing a story on your area of expertise.

3. Article Marketing. Write once and have that article work for you again and again. Have your VA submit articles you’ve written to online article databases to increase the number of links back to your website and to send more visitors to your website.

4. Strategic Alliances. Once of the quickest ways to grow your business is by creating strategic alliance or joint venture relationships. Have your VA research potential strategic alliance or joint venture partners who provide a service to a similar audience or whose client base could benefit from your product or service.

5. Product Development. Got recorded interviews sitting around gathering dust on your hard drive? How about information you’ve created for presentations that you’ve never done anything with? Have your VA coordinate the transcript and audio editing of any recorded files you might have and help you polish those into saleable products. Your VA can also help your format printed material into an ebook, ecourse, special report, etc. and before you know you, you’ll become an information marketer!

What operational aspects of your business could you delegate to someone else? If you had extra time, how could you increase the revenues of your business? Give these questions strong consideration–and use your Virtual Assistant to help you make more profit with less of your time today!

Online Business Resource Queen (TM) and Online Business Coach Donna Gunter helps independent service professionals learn how to automate their businesses, leverage their expertise on the Internet, and get more clients online. To claim your FREE gift, TurboCharge Your Online Marketing Toolkit, visit her site at Ask Donna an Internet Marketing question at

Should You Target Competitive Keywords, The Long-Tail or Both?

Posted: 14 Apr 2008 10:34 AM CDT

seoShould your SEO strategy (1) tackle the most competitive vertical keywords (2) pluck the low hanging fruit of the long-tail or (3) employ a combination of both? after deciding which strategy suits your sites ultimate objective, the mental model of the target client and amount of time and content required to accomplish the goal, what are the pros and cons of each tactic?

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Competitive Keywords

Pros: Stable traffic which eventually stems into the long-tail (semantically related phrases). Cons: The process could take up to a year to achieve saturation due to competition and search engine trust.

Also, the results you struggle to maintain are in constant flux (due to high demand), so a defensive strategy is required to maintain your position from scrolling out of the top 10 results.

Isn't Targeting More Competitive Keywords More Difficult?

Before you get discouraged and give up before even getting started, yes the process for bagging a competitive phrase is challenging. But then again, if it were easy, everyone would be doing it and top 10 search engine placement would not be a crowning achievement, but rather a rotating free for all of inconsistency. For this reason, getting into the top 10 search results is more stringent than less competitive positions for ranking. The bar is raised, but so are the rewards, which is why relevance should not be an afterthought, but rather a central theme that consolidates your pages. (more…)

Blog Sites Beware: Liability Lurks In Bloggers’ Postings

Posted: 14 Apr 2008 10:07 AM CDT

blog If your site allows visitors to post digital files or comments (e.g. in an online blog, as well as in a forum or chat room), you could be held liable for copyright infringement if any of their postings infringe the rights of another person, even if you are unaware of the infringement. Under general copyright principles, you would be strictly liable for their copyright infringement, even if you are “innocent”.

You could also be liable for defamatory statements posted by bloggers.

The Playboy Case And Copyright Infringement

A good example of an “innocent infringer’s” liability that occurred before the enactment of Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) is the case of Playboy Enter., Inc. v. Frena, 839 F. Supp. 1552 (M.D. Fla. 1993). In this case, Playboy alleged that the defendants who operated a bulletin board service (BBS) were liable for copyright infringement. Subscribers to the defendants’ BBS had illegally taken copyrighted photos owned by Playboy and uploaded them onto the defendants’ BBS.

The court found the defendants liable for copyright infringement, despite the fact that the defendants did not upload the photos (the subscribers uploaded them), and the defendants were unaware of the presence of the infringing photos until the lawsuit was filed.

The court stated: “…intent or knowledge is not an element of infringement, and thus even an innocent infringer is liable for infringement …”.

The DMCA, enacted in 1998, provided a “safe harbor” so that this harsh result can be avoided, but service providers must take affirmative steps to qualify for it… or else you will suffer the same harsh fate as Frena.

To qualify for the DMCA “safe harbor” from strict copyright liability, you are required:

* to post a specific notice on your site (Terms of Use); and

* to file the DMCA Registration Form with the US Copyright Office.

Liability For Defamatory Statements

In addition to liability for the copyright infringement of bloggers, another pitfall to avoid if you permit visitors to post to your site is liability for their defamatory comments about another person, a competitor, or another product.

Defamation is an intentional false communication, made either orally or in writing, published to a third party, which injures another person or company’s good name or reputation.

While it is clear you will be liable for defamatory statements posted by you or your employees on your site, what about defamatory statements posted by bloggers? Will you be liable?

Statements which consist of pure opinion are not actionable… however, merely stating that a statement is pure opinion does not make it so. For example, a law school professor was awarded $3 million in damages arising out of defamatory statements published on a student’s site.

Online defamation may occur in the context of product reviews where strong statements are posted such as “do not buy this product because it will not perform as advertised”.

In addition, actionable defamation may occur where a site publishes untrue promotional statements about a person or company. For example, in one recent case, the Wall Street Journal was sued by the Harrods department store for publishing the statement that Harrods was the “Enron of Britain”.

Congress came to the rescue of “interactive computer services” in 1996 with subsection (c) of the Communications Decency Act which provides: “No provider or user of any interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.” 47 USCA Sec. 230(c)(referred to below as “Section 230″).

Section 230 was intended to overrule prior case law which routinely held that online providers were liable as publishers and speakers for third party content. Now, under Section 230, absent an affirmative showing by a plaintiff that an online service provider is the author of a defamatory message, email, or post, the provider should almost always avoid liability for defamation. In other words, if you or your employees are the authors of defamatory statements, you’ll still be liable, but if your website visitors are the authors of defamatory material, you won’t be liable.

A word of warning about another pitfall — be careful in assuming an obligation to monitor messages, email, or posts contributed by your site visitors or in exercising editorial control over them. If you assume an obligation to monitor, or if you maintain editorial control, and if you fail to screen out defamatory statements, you may be liable, despite the protections of Section 230.

For this reason, your Terms of Use should clearly state the extent to which you exercise editorial control, if at all, over messages, email, or posts of site visitors. And it’s always best to reserve the right to monitor postings, but not the obligation to monitor.

Conclusion In summary, if you have a blog, take the steps discussed above that are required to qualify for the DMCA “safe harbor” from copyright infringement. Ensure that that your employees do not post defamatory statements on your blog, and affirmatively disclaim any obligation to monitor posts by bloggers.

Chip Cooper is a leading intellectual property, software, and Internet attorney who advises software and ecommerce businesses nationwide. Chip’s easy and affordable online contract drafting service coordinates website contracts such as Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, Subscription, Membership, and SaaS agreements. Visit Chip’s site and download his FREE report, “12 Sure-Fire Ways Your Website Can Get You Sued”.