Writely – 6 months on. I still love it

I have now been using Writely for 6 months and still love it. Google Spreadsheets have become a core tool of my business for communicating tabular data to my clients. These “lightweight” apps are better than I ever expected. I am updating my Writely – A Web Word Processor document as things progress. It looks…

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Adwords + Google Checkout = Perfect Retail Split Testing Channel

Are you making bad assumptions about products? traffic? conversion? These questions, asked early and pursued relentlessly, could save many website projects. Unfortunately, many projects don’t slow down enough to ask these questions – and so the project stalls after much energy and time has been invested. The concept of testing (split testing to be exact)…

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Pay Per Action Marketing – Google Spanks Valueclick

Pay per Action is being tested on the Google Adsense network. “We are currently testing a cost-per-action pricing model to give advertisers more flexibility and provide publishers another way to earn revenue through AdSense,” Google said. “We’re pleased with how the test is progressing and will continue to gather feedback from advertisers and publishers.” We’ve…

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My Chat with Craig Aaron of Save The Internet

Craig Aaron, Directory of Communciations of Free Press and Save The Internet a media watchdog group, says big telecom companies have declared open season on ‘Net neutrality.’ He’s afraid these companies will dictate how we use the Internet, and I had the pleasure of speaking with him today and thought I’d put a few hilights…

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Googlebase and Google Spreadsheets – Can’t we just get along?

Aggghh…FAILURE… again. As I try and try and try to send a clean business locations file to Googlebase, I sit here wishing that Googlebase and Google Spreadsheets would simply get together. Hit the pub and buy each other a pint why don’t you. If the Google Spreadsheet tool had a button “Send to Googlebase” I…

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Drumming Up Business, SenseWeb style.

click to zoom I was toying with some ideas related to the sensing internet, and thought of a customizable wall-mounted device for small businesses. This little device would be given away to the merchants. They would be custom configuered with 20-30 specials that the merchant agrees to – like a set of coupon templates they…

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PPC waste example – don’t do this!

We need some new carpet for our Sienna so I popped online and found an ad that looked pretty good…. and what do you know, blog material! Here, a classic case of broad match and a lack of negative keywords. This merchant has put up a shotgun toyota parts campaign – but doesn’t sell interior…

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At the Whiteboard Rocks

I’ve been meaning to post about this for a while, but the ZDNET At The Whiteboard page is probably one of the coolest, geekiest marketing ideas I’ve seen in a while. I found myself chomping to figure out how I might be able to use it someday. Why I like it? a) it’s all content.…

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Split Testing… Are we there yet?

When my daughter was in a car seat as an infant and we drove our car through town in the Summer, other drivers would roll up their windows because of the piercing noise of her screams. Well-fed, changed, and gently coddled in the softest blanket, her protests mocked it all. I took to keeping a…

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Behavioral Ad Effectiveness Rooted in Paranoia?

David Rittenhouse at Clickz recently published “Behavioral Targeting Is Starting to Look Better” which includes some interesting information nicely summarized from the eye-tracking study done by TACODA with Next Century Media. There are lots of interesting bits in the article, as David points out, but one thing that struck me was the reports reference to…

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Web Designer / SEO “Snake Oil” Rant

I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about how much energy and money has been wasted on “fruify” web development and clueless SEO efforts. Thousands of companies have spent endless dollars on tag-tweaking “search experts” and pixel-tweaking flash animators without a Key Performance Indicator in sight! Countless thousands of amateur web designers have sold…

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SEO can learn from the construction trade

One of the most difficult barriers to overcome in beginning a relationship with a new organic search optimization client is the need to face up to the reality of a broken website. “Broken” doesn’t always mean page-not-found errors or web servers going down. Gorgeous, 100% uptime sites with the latest bells and whistles can be…

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Don’t be frantic! Slow down in your internet marketing!

I’ve encountered quite a number of potential website development clients this week who’ve sent emails to me that cover 10-12 topics per message in a frantic, nearly desperate fact finding activity. I usually have no idea how to answer their questions. Stop. Slow down. Breathe. Categorize your website marketing ideas and thoughts before you call…

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The smudge test for website effectiveness

Ask yourself this question: “Within 15 seconds of visiting my site, does the visitor unambiguously head towards the goal(s) I need them to accomplish for my website to be profitable?” If you’re like many, the answer is “not even close.” Over time, websites evolve until they’re blurry. They lose their focus as demands of new…

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Why should I visit your site?

This, I admit is a pet peeve. You’ll be looking at an ad, magazine, newspaper, or some other printed medium, and at the bottom of the page will be the following: visit our website http://www.notarealsite.com My response to this is… no… I’ve got better things to do and while you feel your company should be…

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Human-like web crawling & SEO

At the Shmoo Con hacker conference, an engineer at Atlanta company SPI Dynamics called Billy Hoffman says he has a web crawler that acts like you or me. It hits links, javascript, flash, and other page elements like a human does, slowly, with indeterminate pauses. Not only that, Hoffman’s crawler acts like a browser by…

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Fly-Through Local Ads Next?

Hotstop is a map site with subway and bus directions in New York, Boston and Washington DC, but it brings some innovation to the table that pushes forward the public transportation and local advertising paradigm a few notches. First, Hotstop gives you transfer information for public transit that you can put on your mobile phone,…

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Podcasting for the masses.

Idea 1: Imagine if you will a podcast widget. This little box looks like a tape recorder. It has a play, record, rewind, ff, and pause button, all large and friendly. It has a small (gasp) speaker. When you want to record, you treat it just like an old fashioned tape recorder. But there’s a…

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Doctor Doctor, Tell me the news!

I know how to save the US economy hundreds of millions of dollars a year. No really. Have physicians and medical offices post their “medical records update” online as a PDF file that you can fill in at home the night before! You only have to post it ONCE (when it changes) and then it…

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Abandoned Shopping Cart Avoidance Tips

Top Reasons For Abandonment: 56% – shipping costs too high 41% – item unavailable. 29% – site difficult to use. 21% – order wouldn’t go through. Source: Yankee Group Other factors 55% would revisit a site often if free shipping 46% consider shipping costs a major on-line shopping issue. Source: Ernst & Young Reducing Abandoned…

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XML Aggregation and Web Marketing

I also finally learned Carp and Grouper XML/Atom translation techniques for dynamic page generation and blog publishing. I took this and created a second tab on my home page that will hold my blog entries. Cool software – it has lit my idea light a bit on how my clients might be able to utilize…

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Wikis for Internet Marketing: Ideas

I’ve been experimenting on a new side project (like I have time) that will use the WikiMedia software to allow visitors to Kentucky State Parks build their own park descriptions as they visit the parks. This will let those who know the parks up and down provide details and updates that we could never expect…

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Adwords Management Done Right

I saw this on Seth Godin’s blog today and really enjoyed it. It’s a terrific example of how fast you can react in today’s advertising world. It doesn’t require that you bring America’s largest city to a standstill, many smaller events and news items warrant adjustment of your Adwords campaign. You just have to think…

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