How to Hide Affiliate Links

In a previous post I reported that Google is now penalizing pages that have affiliate links on them. I am not going to discuss the pro’s and con’s of this decision right now. Instead, I’d like to offer a quick fix for my downlines and other legitimate affiliate marketers who may be affected by it.

Here’s a simple way to hide those affiliate links so that they are not actually on the pages you want ranked. It involves setting up simple php redirects. I am assuming that you know how to log in to your host site and make simple changes to files there. If not, the person who created your website or blog should be able to do this for you. It takes only a few minutes. Continue reading

Google Quietly Changes the Rules with Affiliate Pages

I just came across this post by Perry Marshall, author of several leading books on Google Adwords. Like many of you, I have some affiliate links on my web pages. Toward the end of last week, I was seeing a significant drop in viewers. I wondered why this was happening until I saw this post on Perry Marshall’s blog.

Apparently Google now checks for affiliate links on your landing pages. When it finds affiliate links, it downgrades the rank for that page significantly.

For the moment, ‘PHP redirects’ are a good way to circumvent the problem.  However, it is clear that Google is specifically targeting affiliate review sites.  The best solution for the long term is not to have affiliate links on landing pages for which you want a good ranking.

Sidebars That Increase Readership

Have you ever seen a blog with a distracting or even annoying sidebar? How about those sidebars containing long lists of tags in curiously big fonts? Or perhaps you’ve seen animated sidebar dancers with hoola-hoops selling mortgages? Puhleez. We’ve all learned how to ignore that jumpiness on the side.  But if your readers ignore it, your sidebar is a missed opportunity.

Generally, blog designers don’t pay enough attention to what’s in the sidebars. And guess what? It matters. Well chosen sidebar content can increase readership, increase stickiness and increase responses to promotionals.

These points are addressed in depth in a recent article by Clayton Makepeace. The article discusses the do’s and don’t’s of sidebars. Though the context of the discussion is the magalog, the points apply equally well to blogs and websites.   Incidently, according to Wikipedia, ‘A magalog is a promotional copy of a magazine, usually in a 12-page catalog format.’ Magalog = magazine + catalog.

To summarize briefly, there are two kinds of readers: casual scanners, and straight-through readers. The readers will read through most of the article from beginning to end. However, the casual scanners will flip through the article, sometimes in no particular order, looking for something that catches their attention. The scanners are more likely to find something that interests them if the sidebar guides them to it.  In other words, “great sidebars turn scanners into readers.”

For 21 smart kinds of sidebar content, you’ll have to read the article, which is here. You’ll be amazed at the number of good ideas you’ll get for your sidebars.

By the way, you can see a beautiful example of a well designed sidebar on Clayton’s website, www.makepeacetotalpackage.com.

Interview with Bob Proctor

Today I stumbled on an interview with Bob Proctor given by Alex Mandossian.   During the interview Mr. Proctor tells the story of his life: how he started, what he learned, and how he became a life coach.  He also talks about the principles he learned and now teaches.  These include the Law of Attraction.

I found his story deeply inspiring.   Lately, I’ve been focused on outer things like building blogs and writing squidoo articles.  But hearing his story reminded me that the inner work we do is far more important than the outer work.  In order to make our businesses flourish, we need to shift our thoughts and beliefs about abundance.  When we believe that we are abundant, the money comes.  The hard part is to replace our doubts about ourselves with the belief that we can have the life we want and be paid for it.  That’s where most of us stumble.  In the interview Proctor discusses how to make this change.  While listening, I wrote down the books he mentioned which treat this topic in more detail.

Here are his references. Hope you find them helpful.

  • “Think and Grow Rich”, Napoleon Hill. This book changed his life.
  • “The Hidden Power”, Thomas Troward (1921)
  • “The Millionaire Maker”, Loral Langemeier
  • “The Street Kids Guide to Having it All”, John Asarath
  • “As a Man Thinketh”, James Allen
  • “The Science of Getting Rich”, Wallace D. Wattles (1910)
  • “You Were Born Rich”, Bob Proctor
  • “The Millionaire Mindset”, Gerry Roberts
  • “Magnificent Obsession”, Lloyd C. Douglas
  • “The Secret”, Rhonda Byrne

You can listen to the interview here, www.askbobproctor.com/replay.  There’s also a transcript you can download.

To find out more about Mr. Proctor’s coaching program, check his site, www.bobproctor.com.

How to Create a Killer Ad

In a recent post on Clayton Makepeace’s site, he discusses how he distinguishes good ad copy from bad ad copy. He’s got some great guidlines from his 37+ years as a copywriter. I won’t spoil the punch line, but remember that buyers make decisions by feeling and then use reason to justify the decisions. This is a must read for anyone who wants to improve his writing skills.

Click here for Clayton’s article, “How to Create a Killer Ad”.

Ann Sieg’s Renegade Network Marketer eBook

RenegadeNetworkMarketer-mediumThe Renegade Network Marketer teaches a common sense approach to marketing your MLM (or small business) on the internet. It is an internet marketing strategy primer. I’ve emphasized the word strategy, because the goal of the book is to give you the understanding you need to create a marketing plan that works.

The Renegade Network Marketer will show you how to use PayPerClick, Ezines, Blogs, Email, Special Reports and more, in a way that maximizes your return on investment. In fact, your advertising can actually be a source of revenue while you are building a list of prospective customers.

For the one-time cost of the ebook ($67.95) you also get access to the Renegade System. The Renegade System is both a training system and a back-end website that you can use to make money with your marketing and training efforts.

Here is a list of the components that you will have access to.

  • “The Renegade Network Marketer” eBook
  • “The 7 Great Lies of Network Marketing”, a free viral eBook
  • The Renegade Newsletter
  • Online Training and Resource materials
  • Marketing Tools
  • The Landing Pages
  • The Follow Up System
  • The Back-End

If you’re new to internet marketing, you may not know what some of these terms mean. They are explained in the book, but I’ll say just a few words here. Suppose you want to finance your marketing efforts by advertising the Renegade materials themselves on the web. There’s a bit of machinery you need to do this: a web site (back-end), advertising pages (landing pages), a database for collecting contact information (back-end), some means of collecting payment and delivering the product (also back-end). Rather than build all of this yourself (or hire someone), you can use the Renegade System and receive a generous commission.

Frankly, the eBook and the additional training materials alone are well worth it. It’s an amazing bonus to be able to use the Renegade System as well.

Incidently, if you buy the Renegade Network Marketer eBook by July 23, 2009, you’ll get all this for half the regular price of the book. Definitely a bargain!

Changes at Digg Affect Search Engine Optimization

Ordinarily, Digg and other bookmarking sites are good ways to get more links pointing to your blog or website. Google ranks your site (partly) by counting the external links that point to your blog or website. The more links that point to your site, the higher its rank, and the more likely it is to come up on the first page of search results. See for example, To Digg or Not to Digg?. This is part of “Search Engine Optimization.” SEO is about using various tactics to get Google and other search engines to put your site on the first page of search results.

By the way, Google has no way of knowing how much traffic your site actually gets. That’s why they count the number of links to your site. They use the number of links pointing to your site as a rough indicator of your site’s popularity. Google and other search engines get this link information from their web crawlers.

However, there have been some recent changes at Digg that reduce the number of links that are likely to point to your site. Under certain circumstances, links that could point to your site now point back to Digg. This increases the traffic to Digg at the expense of users and publishers. Consequently, these changes reduce the advantages of using Digg. Here are two recent reports from Mashable.com that explain the issue in detail: Digg Accused of Twitter Traffic Bait and Switch and Digg Just Highjacked Your Twitter Links

Digg, of course, continues to be a good way to get more traffic to your site. When you “digg” an article, you are recommending it to others who may then check it out. This traffic to the article still happens.

We will report on any further changes from Digg, or on any response from Digg regarding these changes.

The Black Art of Persuasion

There are 2 critical skills for effective marketing. The first is the art of writing persuasive copy. The second skill is knowing where and how to post this copy so that your target audience will see it.

My favorite site for learning how to write compelling copy is Clayton Makepeace’s site. This site contains hundreds of free articles, mostly written by Clayton Makepeace, one of the foremost copywriters in the US.

Today’s gem from Clayton’s archive is an article written by Daniel Levis, entitled Copywriting Witchcraft And The Black Arts Of Persuasion Part – 1. In the article Levis discusses some subtle and dangerously persuasive techniques, that I first encountered during a study of NLP (NeuroLiguistic Programming) and hypnosis many years ago. I shouldn’t be surprised that Madison avenue has also discovered these techniques. To level the playing field, have a look by clicking the title above or going to www.makepeacetotalpackage.com and clicking ‘Archives’ just above the menu bar at the top.

Update: 7-22-09
The second part of Daniel Levis’ article came out today: Copywriting Witchcraft And The Black Arts Of Persuasion Part – 2.

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This is a training site devoted to helping you thrive with a home business. In these pages you’ll find a diverse range of articles. We will explore the practical, psychological and spiritual levels, as they relate to your growth and prosperity in your business. For example, you can expect to find how-to articles on marketing strategies, such as how-to use Google Adwords or how-to use Squidoo articles to drive traffic to your site. However, you can also expect to find articles that help you to clear any internal debris that may be in your way. For example, there will be articles on the Psychology of Money and how to reprogram your thinking for success.

This site is for you, if you want to develop your business and marketing skills, or your presence in the internet community. We hope that you will find something of interest here, whether you are looking for your first home business, or you are an experienced entrepreneur.