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Is it SPAM or is it GLAM?

A Discussion on Link Exchange

A recent client was concerned about whether to accept a request to exchange links with their web site. With their own credibility on the line our client was right to be wary. Here are some things initially to think about when considering link exchange:

  • First impressions count for a lot. Does the request seem like a form letter? If it does then it’s likely part of a spam mass emailing. Probably, their web site and product or service is not a good fit with yours.
  • If you want to go further, examine the request’s grammar, spelling, and general tone. While you still should check their web site, failure here is a red flag of a web site quality issue.
    • Is the tone insistent or bullying? Have they said they’ve already linked to your web site? They are trying to create an obligation in your mind to accept their link.
    • Are they trying to impress you with their page rank, their number of links, etc.? These are important but is that their main focus? They should mention how their proposed page link can help you. Perhaps their content is not a good fit for you.
  • How will the link code you received look when displaying on your page?

If the swap request gets this far, look at the quality of their web site to see how credible the request is. Manually enter the URL of the site in a browser – do not click on the link they sent you in case it is a virus.

Website

If the web site doesn’t pass your tests it’s either because the owner has not done his/her homework in identifying your site as a good fit, or there is a difference of opinion as to how useful an exchange would be to you.

  • Does their site “read” well? Is their site content relevant to your site content? Is the tone and overall quality consistent with yours?
    • If the link is to a blog page, are the quality and tone acceptable? Are these entries originals or merely reworks or copies of postings on other sites? Good original postings can add credibility to your link.
  • As a quick impression, what other links are on the page they ask readers to link to? Are these your competition? Would those links add credibility to your link?
  • Try some of these links. This can provide additional clues as to the quality of the site and reliability of the owner.

Site Owner

Use a web search and social media profiles to sense whether this link request is legitimate. Look for reviews and comments (but be careful – these may not be real).

Nothing can guarantee a credible, useful link. These guidelines should enable you to eliminate all but the most cleverly fashioned but undesirable link exchange requests. Should your own research still leave you with a question, we will be happy to offer you our opinion.

Contact Us Today!

 

The post Is it SPAM or is it GLAM? appeared first on Infinite Web Designs, LLC.

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Google’s Panda 4.0 Is Released

Google continues its ongoing efforts to improve the quality of the search results it returns. Google’s head of web spam, Matt Cutts tweeted the release of Panda 4.0 earlier this month and the web went crazy.  Panda is designed to lower the ranking of what it determines are lower-quality content sites. But like previous versions, this update sometimes unfairly penalizes high-quality sites.

Panda penalizes spam and copied content. Its algorithm looks for certain words and phrases and webmaster attempts to fool the algorithm, as well as content spinning. Content recognized as general rather than specific is considered of low quality. Inbound links also are examined for quality.

So, what is quality content? Generally speaking, high quality means content at the level of published books or in popular magazines.

But what does that mean?

Panda has been known to be less than perfect and this is why a Panda false positive is possible. How the updated Panda algorithm was developed and validated, and how it performed in its testing phase before release has not been not publicly divulged. This makes upgrading a web site that has been negatively affected by this release more of an art than a science.

Complicating things with this Panda 4.0 release is that at virtually the same time Google released its Payday Loan 2.0 spam algorithm. Webmasters are exercising all of their skills to tease out which algorithm forced a site downgrade and what specific page content was the cause.

Do you have concerns about how Panda will effect your business’ website?

Contact us today for an SEO evaluation.

 

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35 email marketing stats may surprise the sh_t out of you

By Rob Petersen

More B2C and B2B companies plan to increase spending in email marketing this year than any other media channel according to StrongView.

Surprised?

If you’re like most people, a reason you opened this email is you look at your emails between 6 and 20 times a day. That’s just on your computer. On a smartphone, you could be checking up to 150 times a day says ABC News.

So maybe it’s not surprising so many companies are investing in email marketing. How effective is email marketing? Here are 35 stats that may surprise the sh_t out of you.

  1. 4325% Return on Investment (ROI). For every $1 spent, $44.25 is the average return on email marketing investment (source: Experian)
  2. 158% higher click-through rate occurs with emails that include social sharing buttons (source: GetResponse)
  3. People who buy products marketed through email spend 138% more than people that do not receive email offers (source: Convince and Convert)
  4. 91% of consumers check their email at least once a day (source:ExpressPigeon)
  5. 84% of all email traffic will be spam in 2014. (source: The Radicati Group)
  6. 82% of consumers open emails from companies (source: Litmus)
  7. 78% Of U.S. email users will access their emails via mobile by 2017.(source: Forrester)
  8. 69% of mobile users delete emails that aren’t optimized for mobile (Litmus)
  9. 64% of decision-makers read their email via mobile devices (source: TopRankBlog)
  10. 77% of us want to get marketing messages via email. There’s no close second (source: MarketingLand)
  11. 76% of email opens occur in the first two days after an email is sent (source:Alchemy Worx)
  12. 72% of B2B buyers are most likely to share useful content via email (source: Earnest Agency)
  13. 70% say they made use of a coupon or discount from a marketing email in the prior week. (source Blue Kangaroo)
  14. 69% of mobile users delete emails that aren’t optimized for mobile (source: Litmus)
  15. 66% of consumers have made a purchase online as a result of an email marketing message (Direct Marketing Association)
  16. 64% of people say they open an email because of the subject line (source:SalesForce)
  17. 61% of B2B marketing professionals worldwide said CTR was the most useful metric for analyzing email campaign performance, compared with 48% of business-to-consumer (B2C) marketers. (source: Ascend2)
  18. 60% of marketers believe email marketing produces positive ROI (source: Marketing Sherpa)
  19. 60% of marketing emails sent on Thanksgiving Day were opened on smartphones (source: MarketingLand)
  20. 59% of companies are integrating email and social channels together (source: eConsultancy)
  21. 48% of marketers don’t know what percentage of their emails are read via a mobile device. (Source: eConsultancy
  22. 40% of B2B marketers rated the leads generated by email marketing as high quality. (source: Software Advice Survey)
  23. 39% of marketers have no strategy for mobile email. (source: eConsultancy)
  24. 35% of business professionals check email on a mobile device (source: Convince and Convert)
  25. 27% of consumers were more likely to say their favorite companies should invest in more email. (source: ExactTarget)
  26.  25% of emails are opened on iPhones (source: Email Client Market Share)
  27. 23% higher open rate occurs with personalized subject lines (source: adestra)
  28. 17% of marketers don’t track or analyze email metrics for their organization (source: MEC Labs)
  29. 13% of execs are now primarily checking their email via a mobile device: less than half of websites/emails are optimized for customers to view or respond to via handheld resources. (Source: MarketingSherpa
  30. Only 11% of emails are optimized for mobile (source: Equinux)
  31. 10% more women click on mobile emails than men (source: TailoredMail)
  32. Only a mere 2% of marketers rated leads generated from email marketing as ‘high cost,’ representing the lowest cost channel. (Source: Software Advice Survey)
  33. 3.6 billion new email accounts are expected to be opened this year; by 2016, the nmber is expected to be 4.3 billion (source: The Radicati Group)
  34. 2X higher open rates occur on mobile devices versus desktop (source: MarketingLand)
  35. Monday emails had the highest revenue per email (source: Experian)

These stats prove to me email marketing is one of the most reliable investments a marketer can make. They also prove its worth taking the time to do it and measure it well.

What do they prove to you? Are they a surprise?


Rob-Petersen-150x150Rob Petersen is an experienced advertising and marketing executive and the founder of the BarnRaisers agency.

Follow Rob on Twitter: @RobPetersen

The post 35 email marketing stats may surprise the sh_t out of you appeared first on Infinite Web Designs, LLC.

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Enter to Win a Free Twitter Branding Package from Infinite Web Designs!

What You Will Win

twitter-3-custom

We are giving away a complete Twitter branding package for your business! Using your existing brand/style, we will create the following elements for the lucky winner!

  1. Twitter icon
  2. Twitter background image
  3. Twitter header image

How to Enter

  1. Fill out the entry form below
  2. Follow @teamwebdesign on Twitter
  3. Send us a tweet — it can contain anything you want, but has to include the #iwd13t hashtag in the message to count as an entry!

Entry Form






* First Name
* Email
  * = Required Field
 

Rules and Guidelines

  1. Only 1 entry per Twitter account throughout the duration of the contest.
  2. You must include @teamwebdesign in the reply as well as the #iwd13t hashtag.
  3. Anyone found using multiple accounts to enter the contest will be ineligible.
  4. Contestant will be responsible for providing existing logo, color scheme, images and/or other branding materials, for design purposes.
  5. Contest ends on October, 22nd, 2013 at 12:00am EST.
  6. Infinite Web Designs will choose the winner at random and send them an email and a tweet with the notification.

The post Enter to Win a Free Twitter Branding Package from Infinite Web Designs! appeared first on Infinite Web Designs, LLC.

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