Increase Traffic with Holiday Deals

More and more consumers are turning to the internet, rather than stores, to make their holiday purchases. So, for the best way for a business to increase sales, revenues, and bring in more consumers, without having to open a new physical store, is to set up an e-commerce site on their existing website. Not only will this option open the doors for sales, and expand the business without adding a new location, but it will also transform a business from a local retailer, to a national, and potentially a global corporation, depending on who purchases from the e-commerce site.

Companies can choose to sell all products that are sold in stores, sell only select products, sell limited products, or sell a mix of products and product lines, when setting up the e-commerce site. In order to set up the site, all that has to be done is to choose an e-commerce provider, which will basically do all the work, and offer a one stop solution for the business. The provider will register the domain name, host the e-commerce site, offer templates and tools (including shopping carts, instant check out options, and payment options), and offer the company the tools needed to build up the site.

SEO Benefits:

Other than the fact that your business will increase profits, sales, and revenues, not only during the holiday season, but year round, there are also various SEO benefits to adding a holiday discount. First off, when a searcher is looking for particular goods online, if your company offers a promotion, it will show up more frequently on the main search sites.

Additional SEO benefits include the fact that your company may have the ability to be found on other sites, via back links. If you are adding a manufacturers discount for the season, the advertisement adds backlinks to that products manufacturer. This will help increase your page rank and drive more traffic.

Adding a coupon code or discount promotion will also allow more keywords for your Adword’s campaign. Just adding the word “coupon” will increase the traffic to your site. For instance, if you sell clothing, your new keyword list could include discount clothing, clothing coupons, clothing sale, etc.

Choosing Deals:

Utilizing the same companies you currently advertise with is the best option. As your relationship with that company is already established, setting up the discounts will be effortless. Try choosing products that may be in high demand throughout the season.

If you are selling your own products, try discounting your top sellers. These are products that are already high in sales and give those waiting for a discount to be able to finally order. There is a reason the video game systems go on sale every year, they are top sellers and use the holidays to reach consumers on a budget.

Best way to set up e-commerce site:

Most web hosting companies allow discount programs to be created for their shopping carts. You can choose to either set a dollar amount such as $10 off of an order of $50 or more, or a percentage such as 10% off of every purchase. You may also choose a date range for when the discount coupon would begin and end. Contact your hosting company to find the easiest way to initiate your coupons. You may also ask which type of promotion is most successful if you are undecided about $ or %.

This holiday season proves to be a great year for shopping. With the slight improvement in the economy, spending is expected to rise. However, many shoppers are still spending cautiously and wanting to find the best deals. Initiating a holiday discount promotion for the season can bring more traffic and an increase in sales. The lasting effects will be customers that return throughout the following year to order from your site.


About the guest author: As a stay at home parent, Mary Blanchard understands the importance of making her dollars stretch. She frequents the site to help her stay within budget and still have a little left over to splurge.

This is a unique article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

All You Need to Know About Backlinks

Perhaps one of the most crucial SEO needs, besides meta tags and content optimization, is one we often forget about when creating a search engine friendly website: backlinks.

What are backlinks, anyway? According to Wikipedia, backlinks ‘also known as incoming links, inbound links, in links, and inward links, are incoming links to a website or web page. In basic link terminology, a backlink is any link received by a web node (web page, website, or top level domain) from another web node.’

Why backlinks? The more backlinks you have to your website, the higher you get ranked! Google uses the number of backlinks to a website to calculate the PageRank, popularity and importance of that website. So what started out as an important means of web navigation prior to the emergence of search engines is now an important need in SEO.

The reason Google uses backlinks for its PageRank system is because Google considers a link from page X to page Y as a vote, by page X, for page Y. This has spurned many companies to randomly place as many backlinks to their website as possible, no matter how irrelevant the content of the originating site – link spam.

In order for a backlink to be regarded as spam-free and valuable, it needs to come from an authoritative website. Also, if both websites contain content that is keyword centric, the backlink’s value increases. The anchor text – the labelling of the hyperlink – also determines the success of a backlink. The relevance of the anchor text to the content of the webpage is evaluated by search engine bots and, if relevant, the webpage will be ranked higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs) ranking.

Many content management systems have features to track the number of backlinks, provided the site carrying the backlink notifies the target website. Most search engines also help you arrive at the number of backlinks they have kept track of to a particular webpage. There are other tools offered by companies that track backlists.

Gaining backlinks is not just tedious but a specialised task. Since backlinks are quite important to the popularity of your website, you can use several viable options to get top-notch backlinks. You can hire a company to build links for you, you can buy backlinks from relevant websites, or you can create inbound links on discussion boards and forums, article directories, press releases, content exchange programs (RSS feeds), social networking websites, blogs, Wiki’s and video sites.

Before you start getting backlinks, it is a good idea to take a look at the backlink-profile of your competitors.

Even today, with the advance of the search engine algorithms (such as Panda), the increased importance of quality fresh content and of the Social Media channels, backlinks are still the most important factors to help increase your rankings in the search engines.


This is an original article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

Make It Easy for Them

This article started when I was looking for a new piece of luggage recently. Ive been traveling a lot recently and have seen those suit carry cases and thought how useful one would be for me. They are specifically designed to keep suits flat and crease-free when traveling.

I went online and began looking at a major luggage company’s website. It wasn’t long before I came up against my first problem. I couldn’t find them on the site. The different luggage categories provided no clues as to where I’d find them. The category names were so vague that you couldn’t guess where they were either. Apart from going through every single category, the only other choice I had was to use the on-site search function. Couldn’t find anything under “suit carry cases” or “suit carrying cases”. By this time i was getting frustrated and annoyed. I emailed the company and asked them where they were on their site. The next day I got a reply to say where they were – under “garment bags”. That’s the last thing I thought they’d be called (at the time at least). No wonder I couldn’t find them.

I looked through the garment bags section and found another equally serious problem. The pictures they provided of the products were tiny and dark. I wasn’t going to make a great buying decision when I couldn’t even see the product detail well was I? No, of course not.

This cant be a good situation. I want to buy a particular product. I have my credit card ready to buy and the company is persuading me not to buy it from them.

Why did this negative experience happen? Because they didn’t make it easy for me to find the product I wanted and look closely at it in order to make a confident buying decision.

  • Could it have been prevented? Yes.
  • Could it have been a positive experience instead of a negative one? Yes.
  • Would they have made a sale then? Yes.
  • Would i be a happy customer? Yes.
  • Could they be losing other sales too to other frustrated potential customers? Yes.

What should have happened when I visited the site? They should have gone out of their way to present me with a great product and make it easy for me to at least look at in detail, i.e. a bigger photo. Incidentally, the website was very glossy and polished as you would expect from a corporation but it obviously lacked in other critical ways. Therefore, perhaps functionality isn’t always the highest priority for a website and well, maybe it should be.

Make sure you aren’t doing something similar on your website. Get someone independent to look it over. You’ll be glad you did if you can prevent losing as many sales as this company obviously is. Who knows how many sales they’ve lost. Hundreds? Thousands?

Don’t frustrate your customers by making it difficult for them. Help your customers choose your products and buy from you easily. Do it well and stand out.


About the guest author: Samet Bilir a freelance writer who writes about practical technology and online shopping products. He owns the website, where visitors can find some of the best digital photo frames available today.

This is an original article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

3 SEO Mistakes You Could Be Making

It doesn’t matter how long you have been blogging or working on websites, Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, isn’t necessarily easy, and mistakes can easily be made. There are some mistakes that happen more than others, and even pros that get complacent can be responsible for these common snafus. Some of these often found SEO errors may, unfortunately, even show up on your blog or website.

This isn’t to say that you make SEO mistakes, but if you did, there are certain mistakes that are made far more commonly than others. This list is just three of the common SEO mistakes that you could be making. Do any of them look familiar?

1.) Bad Keywords.

Keywords are one of the biggest SEO components, and if you are picking bad keywords for your site, you are making a big mistake. Good keywords are keywords that real people would actually use in a natural search, and bad keywords are any that folk’s wouldn’t look for. Bad keywords could make plenty of sense for your site and its content, but if no one would Google them, they stink!

How can you remedy this? You can use one of the many keyword tools available on the internet to see if anyone is actually searching for the keywords you want to use.

Google AdWords has a great keyword tool that can help you with this. Simply enter the keywords you want to use, and this tool will give you a lot of information. You get to find out how many folks are actually searching for the keywords you suggest. It also tells you if you are planning on using a low, medium or high competition keyword. Finally, it gives you alternative keywords and stats so you can select a low competition keyword that is actually getting searched for.

2.) Keyword stuffing.

Keyword stuffing is using far too many keywords. If you keyword density is too high, you have stuffed your page or post.

If there is keyword stuffing on your page, it may be a bit hard to read. Crawlers will definitely find your page, but people will most likely find the text unbearable to try to read such gibberish, probably clicking away from your page as soon as it finishes loading.

Search engines have caught on to keyword stuffing, and they frown on it. If it seems like stuffing is occurring, there is a good chance the search engines will relegate your page to the bottom of the search results.

Keyword stuffing can also happen by accident. It is easy to get carried away as you are writing and accidentally toss a couple keywords too many into an article or make the mistake of having several keywords clogging up a paragraph. If your keywords are natural, things you would normally say or write, this error is even easier to make. Make sure you check your work and edit to prevent this from happening.

3.) Free, hosted domains.

A bigger problem for bloggers, using a free blogging platform like Blogger and WordPress can be SEO killers. It is super easy to get started on sites like these, and they have simple interfaces for beginners to get started with.

If you want a professional and probably profitable blog, the or after your blog’s name in the URL could be the kiss of death for high search rankings. Some search engines may not even end up indexing your blog, as it is a subdomain of these other sites.

If you want to use Blogger or WordPress, but want to Search Engine Optimize too, don’t worry. Most free platforms have a paid option. For a low annual fee you still get to use their interface and tools, but you get your own easily indexed domain name.


This article is written by Kevin Moor, who also writes for, a site emphasizing on how to speed up computer.

This is an original article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

Top Ten Website Host Reviews

Web Hosting Reviews

As with any project you take on in today’s ever evolving world, you need to keep yourself fresh with eyes on the prize in order to reap financial rewards. This necessitates the construction of an online web presence. Unless you have your own servers and a high level of computer science knowledge, this requires a web host. Unfortunately, because chances are you will never see a rep from your hosting company face-to-face, it’s very important to make the right decision. We can offer you information on the following 15 well-known hosts, but the ultimate choice is yours.


This company debuted around ten years ago and is still giving other web hosts a run for their money. They allow their customers to host several sites on one individual account and their pricing can compete with the best of them. With features like 625 GB of disk space, 6,250 GB of bandwidth, 20 domain names, and a 24/7 customer support service via phone, you’re not likely to regret this option.


This company has been around since 1995 and is still going strong as they constantly adapt to the ever-shifting requirements in today’s market. They present their clients low cost, reliable 24/7 service, which is great if you don’t want to take computer classes. They bring to the table shared hosting plans for those who have online commerce presence around the globe. AplusDotNet is based in the United States.


Bluehost was born in 1996 and is still going strong today, proving that they must know what they are doing. They are known to their customers as being reasonably priced with great attentiveness to their customers. They have a 99.9 percent uptime guarantee, offer free credits for the search engines, and promise no hidden fees. Plus they provided unlimited disk space, bandwidth, email and more.


Offering 1TB of bandwidth monthly, unlimited MySQL databases and PHP5 support along with the standards, this company is a definite consideration. Some of their features include customer service around the clock with a guarantee of 100 percent uptime. An additional appealing earmark for DreamHost is that they strive to be eco-friendly and to keep their employees happy.


Fatcow is high ranking as a web host for small businesses. Some of the features it offers are unlimited POP mailboxes and a 30-day money back guarantee. In addition, it generously offers search engine and social networking credits.


If you’ve ever looked for a web host before, chances are that you recognize the name GoDaddy. It provides 10 GB disk space, Linux and Windows hosting, and daily backups. It makes available to its clients 24/7 support, website stats, free setup, and over 50 distinctive applications. Customers will find that GoDaddy has three pricing alternatives (Economy, Deluxe and Ultimate) to meet their needs.


GreenGeeks is a newbie but don’t count them out, as these guys have a lot to offer, such as free site migration on existing sites, a free website build, plus a free lifetime domain registration.  Included features are customer support throughout North America, transparent pricing, and instant activation, but the main attention getting detail about GreenGeeks is that they utilize green energy in the hosting of their customers’ websites.


Host Gator has grown considerably since its inception in 2002, which is probably due to the variety of services that it offers. Plus, it now hosts over two million distinctive domains, and stands behind the 45-day money back guarantee for unsatisfied new customers. They also provide their customers with a free site builder and free credits for Google ads.


Green hosting is what HostPapa stands for, so anyone who has an eye out for the environment should check them out. With unlimited web hosting, data transfer, and domains it also supplies free setup, and of course is 100 percent powered by green energy. To attract customers it offers extremely low prices.


With features including 140 GB of disk space, 1,500 GB of bandwidth, and Windows, Mac and Linux hosting, it is no surprise that InMotion has won business awards. InMotion provide its clients with several packages to choose from and gives them an iron clad 90 day guarantee if not satisfied.


With a decade of experience iPage is definitely one of the major web hosting companies. It can support Dreamweaver, Expressions and FrontPage. Its unique included features include support for chat, email and phone, and they have an online store. They strive to be flexible as they consider each customer an individual.


Ipower has been around a long time and offers its customers one package at just one price with basic features that include 2,500 email accounts and support for international domain names. Features include 24/7 support, Google AdWords and social networking ad credits, and free setup. The company prides itself by holding 700,000+ accounts across the Earth.


Midphase is perfect when small or midsize sites are looking for web hosting.  It offers its clients low, affordable pricing with PHP5, SSL and 1 MySQL Database. Special features include free setup, instant activation, a convenient control panel, and nightly backups.


WebHostingPad might be new on the scene but it is definitely one that should be checked out. Here you will find that unlimited means just that with unlimited bandwidth, databases, disk space, domains, and email and FTP accounts. The company boasts that its uptime is 99.999 percent and provides around the clock monitoring.

Yahoo Web Hosting

Yahoo is geared toward the business sector, and while it provides a single package it comes at multi-pricing choices. It comes with unlimited bandwidth and disk space, 1,000 email address and web design tools that are totally free. Yahoo provides its clients with galleries for photos and videos, their own marketing discount, and a 30 day cash back guarantee.


About the guest author: Sunday O’ Brien is a writer for the blog content creation company, Article Writing Services

This is a unique article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

Facebook versus Google+: The Marketing 411 for Your Business

Google+ is the latest addition to the social media hub, and many experts predicted that Facebook users would be jumping ship because of the recent changes made on the website. But as it turns out, Facebook is still going strong, and we have yet to see the true impact that Google+ could have on advertising for businesses.

At the present moment, we have to compare apples to apples. And Google+ still does not have the same capabilities as Facebook to create a cohesive marketing and advertising campaign for a company using social media.

For starters, Facebook has more users than Google+ hands-down. Facebook has more than 800 million users, while Google+ has 43 million users and counting. The numbers don’t lie. As much as people may want to argue with the effectiveness of advertising on Facebook, the amount of users available to target in an advertising campaign is hard to beat.

Brand Pages versus Fan Pages

Most recently, Google+ released their Brand Pages, similar to the Fan Pages available for businesses on Facebook. The interesting thing about the Google+ Brand Pages is that a brand can sort through their audience and organize them into different circles, like VIP customers, repeat customers, and staff members. So, the information that is posted on Google+ can be filtered into a select audience for the purpose of highly targeted marketing and split testing.

Although we want to give Google+ the benefit of the doubt, there are a few key features that their Brand Pages are missing in comparison to Facebook:

  • Contests are currently not allowed.
  • No custom URLs.
  • No page analytics.
  • No multiple administrative privileges, although this is in development.
  • No ability to separate a personal and professional profile identity.
  • No e-mail or navigation bar profile notifications.

For many businesses, the fact that Google+ does not allow contests and promotions is a deal breaker. One of the greatest benefits that a business has to establish their brand on Facebook is that they can draw their audience even closer by targeting contests to their Facebook fans.

But on Google+, contests and promotions are against the rules. They’re just not allowed. For businesses that have seen great success advertising contests, coupons, and promotions on Facebook, this doesn’t make any sense.

Until Google+ makes some much-needed changes to their Brand Pages, it is going to take much more work for a business to succeed when marketing on Google+ versus Facebook. For many businesses, this may be an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” situation. If your business is already thriving with a loyal Facebook fan base, it may not be necessary to branch out to Google+ until they have something better to offer.


About the guest author: Bethany Ramos is a full-time freelance writer that co-owns her own e-commerce website, The Coffee Bump. The Coffee Bump specializes in a wide variety of Bunn coffee makers and assorted coffee and espresso products.

This is a unique article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

Reacting to Google Fresh

Google has done it again. Eight months after the groundbreaking Panda Update – an advancement that allows the search engine to devalue poorly written content – Google Fresh now judges a page based on the freshness of its content. Pages with stale content will eventually be weeded out, narrowing the field for SEOs and upping the ante for those still able to pass muster with Google.

The Google Panda Update was an algorithm released by Google in March in an effort to quell “shallow content” and improve searches by finding sites with the most relevant content. When interviewed about the newly released algorithm update, executive Amit Singhal explained that “We basically formed some definition of what could be considered low quality. In addition, we launched the Google Site Blocker earlier, and we didn’t use that data in this change. However, we compared and it was 84 percent overlap. So that said that we were in the right direction.” As a result of this update, many websites were demoted in the search rankings, including many prominent and respected companies that were using “black hat” SEO tactics.

Google Fresh has added to this, rating pages based upon how up-to-date their content is, in addition to all of the requirements contained in the Panda algorithm. So the question that comes to mind is how this will affect individual websites.

Sites that track ongoing events or constantly changing landscapes will be more affected by this change than sites that deal with static subjects. For example, the parking garage management industry probably hasn’t changed much since last year; if you’re in that industry, having some older content on your site is probably not going to hurt you.

On the other hand, if your site is all about Chicago attractions, you are going to need regular content updates since it’s a subject that’s constantly changing. Yes, Navy Pier and the Field Museum will be there year after year, but other things about Chicago’s landscape—drink specials at The Rail, special exhibits at the Art Institute and gallery openings —are constantly changing.

Consequently, if you are unable to keep up with site maintenance, then you run the risk of being negatively impacted by Google Fresh. There is a chance you will be lumped in with all of the other content farms out there that are so busy trying to outfox Google that they don’t even bother with fresh content … which is the whole point to this new update. Therefore, it becomes increasingly important to always put forth quality, relevant, current content at all times.

Just as Panda sent the SEO community into a minor panic, so has Fresh, albeit to a lesser extent. The lesson that can be learned from these (and future) updates is to never settle for lower quality standards.  “Relevant” should be a watchword by now for one and all. Now, let’s work on keeping our relevant content current as well, and we won’t have anything to worry about … until the next update, that is.


This is a unique article written by Thomas Stone and published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

Using the Internet as a Tool to Build Your Customer Base

The Internet has become a powerful tool when it comes to commerce. Businesses have taken advantage of the lower costs to market a product online, and customers have taken a liking to the ease of finding information on the web. If your company wants to attract new customers and grow its revenues, it should have a web presence that caters to the customer.

Social Media
The number one thing a company should be doing online is using social media. Get that Twitter account going and have that Facebook page made. Social media is the new way to advertise your company these days. Not having a Twitter account is sort of like not having a phone number these days. Your business will lose out, or be seen as behind the times, if it is not using social media sites.

Search Engine Optimization
Think of the Internet as a modern day phone book. The companies that are going to get the most business are the ones that are located near the beginning of the book. The same is true when a customer looks for a product online. If your company is top on the list, it will be seen by more people. If your company is in the back of the line, it won’t get as many hits.

Good SEO tactics include using relevant keywords to match what customers are searching for, and using social media to create links back to your site. Getting your customers to talk about and link to your site is critical for your web presence.

Affiliate Marketing
If your customer loves your product, why not encourage that customer to advertise for you? Affiliate marketing involves a customer sending out positive reviews of your products to others using the Internet. When that affiliate helps make a sale, that affiliate will receive a certain portion of the proceeds.

In return for that small payment, your company gets organic traffic and links driven by customer generated reviews of your product. It is classic word of mouth advertising in the sense that your company doesn’t have to spend any time advertising, and the cost is minimal. It will help with SEO, drive traffic to your site and your customers will be referred to you by satisfied customers. That sells your product right there.

If you want your company to do well, you have to have an Internet presence. Get on Twitter and Facebook to interact with your customers, keep SEO strategies in mind and use affiliates to drive more traffic with less effort. When done correctly, your customers practically just walk right up to you and give you their money.


About the guest author: My name is Muzammil Bashir. I’m working with the Senior Editor of Net Effekt – A leading email marketing reseller.

This is a unique article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

Do Bad Links Cause a Drop in Rankings?

Drop in rankingsNot all Link building will contribute to great rankings. Too many spammy links can quite often work in the reverse and can even get you listed out of the SERPs.

So what should one consider as a bad link?

Too many targeted anchor text links. It is better to go for a mixed approach so that the anchor text looks natural.

Blog commenting using very generic comments and just leaving the comment with your anchor text can get you penalized. Make sure the comments are valid and relevant to the post before using the anchor text in the comments. Check this post by Google: “If you see a spammy link you created, try to delete it, else contact the webmaster to ask to remove the link. Once you’ve cleared the spammy inbound links you made, you can file a reconsideration request.”

Profile links from social media sites/apps/networks/wikis and forum user accounts. Most profiles are not indexed for long. Google can most likely tell when you’ve spiked thousands of profile links in a few days can result in drop in rankings.

Buying hundreds of posts all directed with the same anchor text targeted for getting ranking for the anchor text and get a penalty of dropping the site ranking to the 5th page. The only way out with such a penalty would be to remove each of those links.

Over optimization even with internal links can also cause the above penalty.

So what is a natural link?

A natural link profile would not have excessive link exchanges, millions of anchor text blog comments, unrelated forum profiles, junk content marketing etc. The anchor text used for the links would be varied enough to look natural.


About the guest author: Catherine Jones writes for She enjoys content and writing about the social sphere.

This is an original article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.

Top 5 Reasons Why Bloggers Should use WordPress

One of the biggest decisions you will make when starting a blog is what platform to use. This decision will determine how easy it is for you to get your blog up and running and to find extensions that give you additional features. You have multiple options to choose from, including WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, TypePad or to add a blog to your static website, using an option like Drupal. Although you have all of these options available, here are five good reasons why WordPress is the best option for bloggers.

1. Hundreds of themes to choose from. Platforms like Blogger have limited theme and template options to choose from, while WordPress has hundreds. You can search these theme options by keyword, color, or even special types like BuddyPress or seasonal.

2. Easy to customize. It is easy to customize the look of your WordPress blog, even if you do not know much about CSS and other programming languages; however, the more you know, the more you will be able to customize your theme. Even the least experienced bloggers can set up their widgets, a customer header, their background colors and decide where and how they want their panels displayed.

3. Free plugins to expand your possibilities. With some blogger platforms, you are limited to basic blogging functionality. With WordPress, the possibilities are nearly endless. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of free plugins that you can install to increase your options and functionality. For example, there are plugins that will allow you to add a shopping cart and payment options to your blog, you can upload files for others to download and you can restrict some pages and turn your blog into a membership website, among other options.

4. Add a community aspect with applications like BB Press. You can also add a social aspect or even a forum for your visitors to use through the BuddyPress and BBPress plugins. This allows you to get personal with your readers through your blog and for your readers to get personal with each other through a community. This way, they are likely to visit your site more regularly, because they have formed relationships with other readers. Your updates are one reason, but not the only reason, for them to visit.

5. Good community support. Many people have come together to make WordPress what it is. Without these people, there would not be as many free themes and plugins as there currently are. This has made WordPress a popular platform that is used by hundreds of thousands or even millions of people. With this comes a community of people that have banded together to help each other with things like technical issues. You can go to and find guides for getting started and an active support forum. The How-to and Trouble Shooting forum has over nine thousand pages alone.

As you can see, WordPress offers customization, extensions and has a good support system that will allow you to do many things with your blog. Some people are surprised at what becomes possible with a good blogging platform like WordPress. If you have or want to start a blog, WordPress is a good option.


This is an original article published on SEO Desk with exclusivity.