Sunday, 31 August 2008

Ebay sues digital point owner for 'alleged' cookie stuffing

A heads up for those of you considering black hat methods


Hot on the press is the story of Ebay suing certain defendants for alleged cookie stuffing

Read the full story at

Now the case is still in its early stages so no conclusions of guilt can be drawn

Personally, I participate in the digital pounts forum at least 4 times a week and to be honest with you have gained a lot of useful information from other internet marketers there

It is a bit of a concern the implications of this allegation

If true, does this make digital point a bad forum or just reflects on Shawn, the owner.

And if proven not to be true, how long does it take to wash away the smear

I intend to continue to use the digital points forum

Anyone worried about cookie stuffing from any site need only to clear their cookies frequently

But the big message here is BLACK HAT COULD RUIN YOUR BUSINESS

Thursday, 28 August 2008

Not so 'Free' Directory Submissions

So as an affiliate marketer or an internet marketer with your own website, one of the things you are certain to have been doing is submitting your website to free directories to get a backlink

If you are not already doing this then get off this post and start hunting down some directories to post your link in, like now!

Anyway I was doing my daily routine of generating backlinks today when I came across a site that has a "List of Free Web Directories that offer a Free One Way Text Link"

So I picked one of the directories and submitted my link, only to be met with the message, "your link will be live once you pay via paypal"

Pay by paypal?

Why was there not any warning before I got to the stage of submitting my link

Anyway, of course I have no intention of paying these cowboys.

Don't get me wrong, I have no problem with paying for links [actually I do, it's against google's TOS] but hey they've got to make a living too

But mate, if you are going to charge me for a link, then announce it from the get go so we both know what the game at hand is.

Not an unreasonable expectation is it?

Anyway newbies, be warned

No backlink is worth paying for

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

5 Things You Must Not Do On Your Niche Marketing Sites

Over the last few posts we have talked about things to do on your website to generate traffic, increase conversions, improve your opt in email list

Surfing through the forums, I have come across a disturbing trend of trying to trick the search engines to get ranking.

Problem is a lot of the sites teaching these methods do not have a sign up stating 'black hat' or 'this could get you banned'

So for clarification for any affiliate marketing newbies reading this, here are the five top things that are against the TOS of the search engines that you may have previously thought were legit

If you have been doing any of these or are contemplating doing them, the only useful advice is


1. Keyword Stuffing: This refers to the practice of including your keywords in your copy an excessive number of times. I know that good SEO says your keywords and variations of it should appear often in your copy. However there is such a thing as too often. This actually does not help your rankings as the search engines can see right through it.

2. Buying Links. You build a website and you come across an ad for 2000 backlinks for $20. Sounds tempting, all those links from other sites pointing back to your website. Again not a good idea. The search engines especially Google, who have the lion's share of the market, frown upon paid for or purchased links and will reduce your ranking in the search engine results pages when they catch up with you

3. Hidden Text: This is the practice of adding your keywords to your webpages using the same colour as your page background, making the text invisible to human visitors but visible to the search engine bots. Again stay away from this. You'll just get burnt

4.Cloaking: Very big with blackhat marketers who are looking to make a quick profit from a website in a short period of time. The timing is crucial to them because they know the search engines will get clued on to what they are up to pretty quickly and shut them down.
Cloaking just means displaying one version of a webpage to human visitors and via software, having another version for the search engine robots. The page shown to the bots are often full of keywords and other SEO components but the content would not make any sense to a human visitor. This results in an artificial increase in ranking of the website but not for long
The search engines will detect your cloaked pages and... yes shut you down

5. Click fraud: Some webmasters monetize their niche sites with adsense. The TOS of Google adsense clearly states that you should not click on your own ads. Click fraud is the practice of clicking on adsense ads on your own websites to try to generate an income. Not good. You will get found out and you will get banned

So just a few things to pay attention to while trying to promote your niche marketing sites

Till next time

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Affiliate Marketing Beginners | The Solution Is Here

I don't care whether it is poor conversions or low number of adsense clicks

Many affiliate marketers have a problem with one area or the other of their business.

The bottom line is you built the website so as to make loads of money. That's the basis of internet marketing

I know there are a lot of guides out there about a call to action, search engine optimization, building the almighty opt in list and building webpages that convert. Heck I have written a few posts on this blog about very much the same things

But the affiliate marketing newbie does not know about autoresponders and a clear call to action

And more often than not he has no ethical bribe, 'freebie', to offer as an insentive to join his/her opt in list

No money for PPC ads, No clout to be sought out for JVs, nothing

So how is the humble internet marketing newbie to make a few bucks on the internet


Yes the simple answer is traffic.

Get tons of traffic to your website

And you can do it without investing one cent.

Yes , your site may not be the most professional site in the world.

And you may not yet have figured out which is the best Adsense block format for your pages

Just get a reasonable site out there ...
...And drive tons of traffic to it

If your conversions are 1%, and you only get 5 visitors to your site a day, you are looking at sticking to that day job for a long time to come.

It will take you 20 days to get a conversion on average.

Now take the same site and drive 1000 visitors to it a day.

Ah, the same 1% conversion rate results in ...10 conversions a day.

Now that is the beginning of a business

Once you have made some money with your high traffic, poor conversion site, perhaps consider investing some of those earnings in improving your site.

An average e book on increasing conversions will cost you about $47.
With the knowledge you gain, you can maintain your traffic but increase your conversions

Now how many sales or clicks a day would a 3% conversion rate make you

Till next time

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Adsense Units Showing Public Service Ads

Adsense siites are becoming a popular method of earning a living on the internet.

But what do you do when you do your niche research, get the website built, add your adsense units in those startegic places on your site and...

Instead of niche relevant adsense ads, you get public service ads. Which make a grand sum of zero dollars and zero cents per click

Shock Horror!
Here are a few reasons why this could occur and what you can do to rectify things

1. Your website is yet to be crawled by Google. This is why we are advised to complete your website and get it indexed before including your adsense code. To experdite indexing, try and get backlinks from other high traffic sites. The bots crawl the high traffic sites often and they will follow the link to your site and crawl it

2. Your site is in a niche that does not trigger any ads. The importance of doing your research before building the site cannot be over emphasized

3. Site in a naughty niche. Need I say more

4. Misuse of the robots txt in your code. This tells the google bots not to crawl certain parts of your site. So google cannot determine what the keywords and content of your site are and pout relevant ads on your pages. Hence public service ads.

Learn more at

Till next time

Wordpress SEO | It's All In The Theme

Well we all not it's not ALL about the theme but in the competitive affiliate marketing business, you need to give your blogs every chance you can with regards to search engine optimization

It is often said that Wordpress is great for SEO and this is why a lot of affiliate marketers are using Wordpress as their blogging platform

I stubbornly stick with Blogger but that's just my preference.

Anyway for all you Wordpress enthusiasts you need to be aware of the influence of Wordpress on your SEO.

And this is where the title of my post 'Wordpress SEO, it's all about the Theme' comes in

There are some Wordpress themes that are very SEO friendly. Probably based on the amount of code, header height and such.

In choosing your Wordpress theme, take a few minutes to research how the theme affects your blog's Search engine rankings

There is always the option of getting a plug in such as all in one SEO plug in [I am told it is rather good] But best to get the basic right as well

Till next time

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Why Adsense Sites Need To Be Niche Specific

In an earlier post on getting the most out of your adsense sites, I mentioned that your best chances of success are with a niche specific site.

Here are a few reasons why

1. Targeted Audience. With niche specific adsense sites, your target audience is very specific. It is easier to identify who your audience is when you are operating in a niche.
Why does it help to identify your target audience? Several benefits in this

a. You can more easily find put where they are likely to hang out online and go get them from that site to your site.

b. Once you know who they are, you can more easily identify their needs and cater to this. Internet marketing after all is about finding a hungry market and feeding its needs after all.

c. Learn to speak their language. Again, once you have identified these people, you can quickly learn how they communicate, the subtle nuances of the niche and incorporate that into your website content

2. Conquer the niche. It is easier to become an authority online in a specific niche than to become a guru on everything.
It is authority and reputation that internet users buy from.

Imagine visiting a website about this that and the other
And on a page he say's hey 'i totally recommend product x'.
And you look about the site to see what his authority is based on.
What experience does this guy have on this topic to recommend this product?
Only to find no other information on the topic.
You are not likely to buy.

You need to establish yourself as an authority in a particular niche to get repeat sales.
Even the mighty Amazon, started as a bookstore. It is only when they attained authority and reputation that they diversified into what Amazon is today

3. Generate Content For Your Site. Structuring and generating content for a niche specific site is certainly less complicated than a general site. With a niche specific site the structure of your site is almost already predetermined. The requirements of your readers more easily defined and researching content is much easier

4. Search Engine Optimization. This is the biggest reason of all.
Identifying niche specific keywords to optimize your website for is much more straight forward in niche specific sites.
Also getting traffic via your SEO efforts is more successful with niche sites than with general sites.
You see most people when they go onto the internet are looking for the solution to a specific problem.

E.g I am bored and want to play sudoku online [This person types in 'sudoku online' which is a niche specific keyword. He doesn't type in 'I am bored']

5. Website Conversions. Loads of affiliate marketers have reported better conversions on their niche specific sites than general sites.
Now personally, all my websites are very niche specific so I cannot discuss this topic from personal experience.

It however stands to reason that the person typing in 'sudoku online' is more likely to play the game when they get to the site, than the person who typed in 'I am Bored'

It is safe to conclude that conversions either with adsense or affiliate products or your opt in form from niche specific sites will be higher than for general sites

Can You Really Make Money with Google Adsense?

As I browse through the forums I find a question that comes up again and again

Can I really make money with Google Adsense?

Some asking this question are internet marketing newbies who have no experience whatsoever. In this case it is understandable that they have come across the concept of adsense sites and are seeking information before jumping in.

Unfortunately, others have had one or two years experience online and have made nothing from their adsense sites. This is the group that I think really needs to worry.

I say this because you can make money from adsense sites and it is not realy too complicated to achieve.

We are not talking about Ginormous sums like the shoemoney site disclosed recently. We are talking about a couple of hundred dollars a month as an initial target. And this really is achievable

So here are a few tips that have helped me along the way

1. Niche specific. Your adsense sites should be niche specific. In later posts I will explain further why you need a niche specific site

2. Search engine optimization. You must apply some seo to your niche sites. Identify your most appropriate keywords and optimize your site for them. You should not settle for a less than a number one position in google for 3 or 4 keyword phrases

3. Stick to The TOS. A must, must do. Cannot over-emphasize this. You just need to read Google's terms of service and stick to it. No black hat or grey hat or whatever other colour unethical hat there is out there. Just white hat techniques

4. You need to update your content regularly and frequently. To maintain your ranking, to keep your visitors coming back and to maintain your reputation as an authority in your niche

5. Master Traffic generation. Even if you are only able to get 1 click per hundred visitors, it converts to a lot of clicks and therefore a lot of income if you are able to get a ton of traffic to your site. In fact I think this is something you really need to concentrate on. traffic generation.

6. Test your ad formats. There are different formats for adsense and you just have to keep testing different formats in different positions till you find what works

7. Have several pages on your site and optimize for different keywords in your niche.

With these few tips, you really can get started on making money with adsense

Till next time