Thursday, February 28, 2008
I met the wonderful folks at the LookSmart booth and they gave me some great gift cards!!

Purchase $100.00 in clicks and they will match that with an additional $100.00 in clicks.

I only have 10 of these! First come first serve.

Here are the details of the offer:

LookSmart offers a budget-friendly alternative and a positive return for your marketing dollars.

To redeem your $100.00 credit, simply go to

Click on the sign-up button and enter the coupon code below at check-out. You will need to input a refill amount of $200.00, in order to receive th3e credit in your Order Summary.

Offer Expires 3/31/2008

Offer only good for first time LookSmart advertisers who set a daily budget of $10.

Need assistance? Call 888-403-LOOK (5665) or email


Please email us for your coupon code!

by: Shawna Seigel

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I was highly impressed with the level of information that Barbara Boser gave
at the SMX West Conference. She was part of the SEO & Social Media Marketing.

She has had over 60 articles reach the front page of Digg and this impressive
lady was also chosen as a stumbler on StumbleUpon

I have placed her official bio below and hope you find her information as
useful as we did!

Barbara stated that Digg sends more traffic and creates more links than any
other social media website.

Below are her tips for success!

Your Profile

  • Make it unique

  • Do not make it similar to any other top users

  • Choose a unique name

  • Choose a memorable avatar

  • Be anonymous and likeable!

  • Use that same identity on all sites to make identifying you easier when

Be Prepared

  • First 2 months could consume all of your free time.

  • Read and learn what is popular in the different communities.

  • Look for tools you can use within the sites and on the web.

  • Subscribe to news feeds from sites that are popular in the community.

Your Profile

  • Make sure it's not similar to any top user's profile.

  • Be anonymous and likeable.

  • Choose a unique name.

  • Choose a memorable avatar.

  • Get a Gmail account and an IM that goes with your user name.

  • Use the same identity on all of the sites.

Adding Friends

  • Start with top users.

  • See who the top users have as mutual friends and how is sharing stories
    with them. Add them.

  • Add anyone with an IM account and introduce yourself "briefly"

  • Add friends who are super supportive.

  • Avoid friends that will be high maintenance.


  • Be one of the first ones to vote.

  • If you think the post will get popular, leave a comment.

  • If someone sends you a story to vote for, give them a quick reply
    letting them know you got it.

  • Vote every chance you get.

  • Stumble while you vote.


  • Learn how to write titles and descriptions for your submissions

  • Don't submit duplicate stories.

  • Don't submit more than 2-3 stories a day.

  • Don't submit stories from your site YET.

  • Submit from a variety of sources to all the sties you have a profile in.

  • Begin by sharing your stories with users that have sent you stories, but
    avoid top users.

  • Don't take anything personally.


  • Profiles should list all the sites you are a member of.

  • Encourage people to contact you.

  • Share stories that are interesting.

  • Ask other users if they are on other sites and add them.

What NOT to do!

  • Don't use multiple accounts on the same IP.

  • Don't ask users you don't really know to submit for you.

  • Don't become an annoyance to users.

Barbara Boser

Social Media Director

3 Dog Media, LLC

Barbara Boser oversees all social media marketing campaigns for 3 Dog Media,
LLC. Her daily routine consists of networking with other top users as well as
creating and implementing strategies with clients that will increase their
presence on community driven sites.

Having become a notable user in top social communities fairly quickly,
Barbara believes that success in social marketing is within anyone’s reach if
they put in the time and participate.

In her spare time she writes for her community blog for Santa Clarita and her
claim to fame SEOWife.

3 Dog Media is a full service internet marketing company specializing in SEO,
SMM, Reputation Management and Wordpress Development.

by: Shawna Seigel

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This morning I started out watching Shari Thurow discuss Search Engine
Friendly Web Design. I have seen Ms. Thurow speak before and always enjoy
listening to her! She has a wonderful book called, “Search
Engine Visibility
.” It’s a must have for your library.

Shari started out with the 5 basic rules of web design.

1. Your Web site should be easy to read

2. Your Web site should be easy to navigate

3. Your Web site should be easy to find

4. Your Web page layout and design should be consistent throughout the site

5. Your Web site should be quick to download.

Shari also stated that although these rules seem quite simple and easy, she
finds that most sites do not follow these simple principles.

Here are some other great facts that Shari added:

• Navigation difficulty is the number one reason (31%) people leave and buy from
your competitor.

• The 3 click rule is no longer applicable. As long as your customers feel that
they are getting to where they need to go. Check out the Scent of Information by
Jared Spool.

• Make sure your most important information is above the fold

• Most important information on your website is your contact information. This
helps to build credibility. Make sure that you add this information to your
about us page as well as your contact us page.

There are 2 factors that are important to ranking in the search engines. The
primary factors include what search engines read to determine relevancy. This
would include your title tag, text, and links. The secondary factors include
meta-tags, alt tags, and domain names.

When focusing on keywords, make sure that you use words that your customers will
use. Include these keyword phrases in your title tag, body, anchor text links,
meta-tags, alt tags, and remember 100% relevancy.

Shari Thurow also stated that there are 3 types of search queries. These

• Navigational

• Transactional

• Informational

Your site must help your user to accomplish all 3 equally.

Next she discussed the differences between the old fashioned doorway pages and
the new SEO friendly informational pages.

The new SEO friendly information pages are primarily made for information; they
match the rest of the website, and reside on your server. They do not require
extra clicks, they contain high quality links and end users and spiders see the
same thing.

Doorway pages on the other hand are only built for the search engines. The text
is all gibberish, the pages reside on another server, the pages typically
require extra clicking or they redirect the user, the end user and spiders do
not see the same page.

Another great tip offered by Shari is to add keywords to your about us page. Add
a photo and give them a call to action as well.

Finally she ended the session with some red flags you need to be careful of
which include:

*Doorway page

*Hallway page

*Envelope pages

*Mini or micro sites

*Satellite sites

*Attraction pages

*Magnet sites

*Channel pages

*Shadow domains

*Theme based sites

*Advertising pages

*Instant links

*Permanent positions

*Guaranteed positions

by: Shawna Seigel

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The good folks from Google Adwords have given me 10 gift cards good for $50.00 of free advertising.

The catch? You have to be opening a brand new account with Google Adwords.

Here are the rest of the details:

Promotional credit must be applied to a new Adwords account within 15 days of creating the account and is valid only for new Google Adwords customers with self-managed signup accounts. Advertisers will be charged for advertising that exceeds the promotional credit. Advertisers will need to suspend their ads if they do not wish to receive additional charges beyond the free credit am0ount. Subject to ad approval, valid registration and acceptance of the Google Adwords Program stand terms and conditions. The promotional credit is non-transferable and may not be sold or bartered. One promotional credit per customer. Offer valid only for sign ups through the URL provided for the promotion, by advertisers whose credit card billing address is in the US or Canada.

First come first serve! Email us now to get your $50.00 gift card.

by: Shawna Seigel

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Wednesday, February 27, 2008
We are now at Search Marketing Expo West in Santa Clara California!

The weather is absolutely beautiful. Back home in Indiana they have a few inches of snow and more on the way. As for me in California, I think I may go in the pool as I am in no hurry to get back home to snow!!

If you are anywhere near the San Jose area, get yourself over here to the Hyatt in Santa Clara. The good folks of SMX offer you the ability to get tons of education for $50.00.

It's called an expo pass. You d0 not get to attend all of the sessions but the ones you are allowed to attend will be good ones!

I will be back soon with updates and information from SMX West!

by: Shawna Seigel

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Melissa Salas, Director of Marketing from introduced the session by explaining why should you use video on your website.

• Customers like to see what they are purchasing
• Build your brand and credibility
• Adds professionalism
• Helps you open yourself to a wider market
• Your videos can go viral bringing you in more traffic
• Efficient sales tool
• Adds credibility
• Gives you more creative expression

The panel included:

Now let’s get to the good stuff!

The theme for the day…it is essential for websites to have video! In fact people expect video.

Tim Carter, Founder, gave great advice on creating successful video. You want to solve a problem. People get on the internet for two reasons.

1. Pleasure
2. To solve a problem

You need to create 30 second to 2 minute videos to solve their problem. (From Shawna - Whether that problem is how to fix a leaky sink or what they should buy for their mothers birthday. Solve their problem!!)

It’s not about the quality of the video it is about the content. You want to help your visitors to solve a problem.

Tim Carter also added that 1 single 40 second video on 1 product page increased sales 400%. The video focused on how to solve a problem!

1 40 second video created to inform NOT sale the customer on a product page increased sales by 400%

Now that you understand that you absolutely need to add video to your website, Brian McCarthy, SVP Business Development, Revver gave some great advice for your new videos.

1. Streaming costs can be very expensive if you host on your own website. It is better to upload to a free server like Revver or YouTube

2. Affiliates now have the ability to add video

3. Once you create your new video, put your video everywhere!

4. The average video created is 2 minutes long

5. Most videos are watched from the workplace

6. Videos are searchable!! Make sure you use your keyword phrase as the title. Discuss your keyword phrase in the video as well. (From Shawna – Remember do not overdo this. Just like when you are writing content. You do not want to spam!)

Gary Vaynerchuk, Host, Wine Library TV explained the most important thing is to talk about what you know. If what you know about are redheaded hamsters, then video about redheaded hamsters. There are people out there looking for that information. Find your niche. Find your passion and video about it. You put out something that is good and you will win. It is not about the quality of the camera, lights, or make-up. It is all about the content!

Need help creating your video? The entire panelist loved the Flip Video! Take your video, plug into your computer, and upload. Done! It comes in all sorts of colors too! Cost around $150.00 and that is a great price! They all said it has great quality too! I will be buying one in the next few days and will let you know myself!

Flip Video On Amazon

by: Shawna Seigel

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Tuesday, February 26, 2008
I had a wonderful lunch yesterday at Affiliate Summit. I met two gentlemen who were from Atlanta and Texas. They were new to Affiliate Marketing but their questions were the same as many of our Yahoo Store owners.

How do I find a niche?

How do I do keyword research?

How do I optimize my pages for the search engines?

How do I stand out and make money?

The answer is the same whether you are building an affiliate website or you have are a store owner.


You need to provide your visitors and the search engines with good quality unique content.

Also, focus on the long tail keywords and start with keywords that less people are searching for.

They are much easier to get #1 ranking for and they convert!!

If you still need more help, make sure to visit our learning center. We provide free video tutorials, free e-books, and much more!

by: Shawna Seigel

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What a fantastic and wonderful way to meet new companies!

Day 1 started out with a new concept for me. Instead of the traditional booths that you see at every trade show (yes those where here too) you were given a day to actually sit one on one with different companies and discuss their products and services.

Affiliate Summit calls this the "Meet Market"

This will explain a bit more about the process....

Affiliate Summit kicks off with an extended session of structured, face to face networking. Merchants will have tables set to meet with affiliates to discuss their affiliate programs and cut deals. Vendors that cater to affiliates and merchants will also have tables to share information about their products and services. Each table is a meeting spot for teaching, learning, closing deals, creating partnerships and finding new opportunities.

See who is hosting a table at the Affiliate Meet Market & Vendor Showcase.

We met some great contacts and also found some really amazing services for Yahoo Store owners which we will be putting all together in our next newsletter for you!

by: Shawna Seigel

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Sunday, February 24, 2008
1 Choice is in Vegas for the Affiliate Summit and will be reporting back to you all the great information! Make sure you have signed up for our feeds so that you get all the great details as they come in!

So what exactly is Affiliate Marketing?

So let me give you an example.

If I read a great book and I want you to read it, I can sign up with Amazon as an affiliate. When I send you the link, I use my new affiliate link. If you decide to purchase the book, then I get rewarded. They pay me for sending you there.

That is Affiliate Marketing!

Now on the other side of things, you can have affiliates selling your products for you. Great idea right??

I like affiliate marketing. You see, it is pay per performance.

When you purchase Google Adwords, do you know for sure how many sales you will get?


But you pay the same amount.

When you have affiliates, they sell your products and you only pay when they get the sale!

I will be bringing you more information including how to start your own affiliate program very soon.

For now, I have to get dressed and head downstairs.

It's time to register for Affiliate Summit!!!

Bye for now,


by: Shawna Seigel

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008
1 Choice now has an affiliate program!

70% of our business has been referrals and return customers.

We wanted to find a way to thank our customers for telling their friends and other business owners about us.

As a matter of fact, we will give you $25.00 just for signing up!

Please visit to sign up and thank you again for telling your friends about 1 Choice!

by: Shawna Seigel

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So while I was traveling I was asked if I was LinkedIn.

I said Linked who?

I went to check out this interesting concept. LinkedIn is a social networking website for professionals like you and me.

What is LinkedIn?

LinkedIn is an online network of more than 17 million experienced professionals from around the world, representing 150 industries.

When you join, you create a profile that summarizes your professional accomplishments. Your profile helps you find and be found by former colleagues, clients, and partners. You can add more connections by inviting trusted contacts to join LinkedIn and connect to you.

Your network consists of your connections, your connections’ connections, and the people they know, linking you to thousands of qualified professionals.

Through your network you can:

  • Find potential clients, service providers, subject experts, and partners who come recommended
  • Be found for business opportunities
  • Search for great jobs
  • Discover inside connections that can help you land jobs and close deals
  • Post and distribute job listings
  • Find high-quality passive candidates
  • Get introduced to other professionals through the people you know
LinkedIn is free to join.

Check out my profile and let's become linked together.

Also make sure that you add links to your website from your portfolio page!!!

by: Shawna Seigel

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Monday, February 18, 2008


This has been an exciting month for me. I have been doing a lot of
traveling and also a lot of teaching lately. I couldn't be happier doing
two things that I love to do!

Our new free video tutorials are helping store owners navigate through
their Yahoo Store.

Our new free e-books are helping store owners understand what it
takes to become #1 in the search engines.

Our new Mentor Program is helping store owners to achieve #1
rankings in the search engines.

Our designs packages are helping store owners to not only increase
their conversion rates but also increase their traffic!

Read our newsletter for more great information!


Shawna Fennell

by: Shawna Seigel

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Saturday, February 02, 2008

Dan Miller, Vice President, Product Management, of American Greetings
had such a wonderful speech on "How to Keep a Design Fresh" that we thought it
deserved it's own post!

First Dan offered great advice on when NOT to redesign. He stated that most
redesigns fail to live up to expectations since most of the time expectations were
set based on aesthetic reasons (emotions) and not strategic purpose. When
redesigning a website, you want to make sure that you identify a strategic objective
and/or a user need. The design should be helpful, but invisible.

When redesigning your website, you need to stay away from emotion. You don't
have to have every gadget out there on your website. Especially if those gadgets
are not beneficial for YOUR customers.

Ask yourself:

- Will this help our user complete their task?

-Is their a benefit created for our user?

-Is this new feature essential to the experience or just the latest "buzzword"

You want to make sure that you focus on design solutions that increase
efficiency in user task completion (for Yahoo Stores this would be to place the
order but sometimes it might be to join your newsletter). These design solutions

-Provide clear navigation

-Design for scan-ability (remember that people scan left to right)

-Use clear labeling

The biggest tip -

Simplify common experiences (add to cart, check out, customization, etc).

Your design should be helpful but not invisible.

-The design should help users flow within your site and avoid causing the user to
trip out of one experience and into the next.

-Good design will guide users on a desired path - over designing will cause the path
to become obscured.

-Understand the effect that design plans on critical elements

Test your website and tweak . Use data to assist you. Focus on a small
section of your website to make changes. Otherwise you will not know what works
and what does not.

Mr. Miller suggests to always watch your competitors:

  • Don't pretend to be a customer, experience the process and buy something

  • Read reviews and what other people are saying to get a better
    understanding of why they use your competitor

  • Subscribe to THEIR newsletter

  • Make it routine to visit and evaluate sites that your shoppers would visit

  • Look to reuse established design patterns that your shoppers are
    familiar with (you are providing your customers a disservice by trying to be

  • Are there conventions that seem to be working well that you can modify
    to better meet your users' needs?

  • Devote time to think about how you can improve something rather than
    trying to invent something new

A great speech and great information Mr. Miller thank you!

The biggest advice I can give you when you are ready for a redesign is focus
on your navigation. You want your customers to be able to find what they are
looking for quickly and efficiently. Think about it, customers typically shop
online to save time and energy. Make it easier for them to find what they need.

Offer them Shop By Price, Shop By Brand, give them the information they need
to locate the products they are looking for. Use breadcrumbs to show your
customers where they are at within your store.

Use "Recently Viewed Items" to add personalization to their shopping

The second biggest advice I can give you is to make sure that you are working
with a company that understands and utilizes the latest techniques in web
design. How a design is implemented into your website can greatly affect your
search engine rankings. You want your pages to load faster for your customers,
you want your customers to find what they want as quickly as possible, and you
also want to make sure that your customers can find you naturally in the search
engines as well. This will give your website the added boost your website needs
to increase traffic and your conversion rates.

Need help? Give us a call and we will be more than happy to answer any
questions you may have! Our toll free number is 888-312-7839.

by: Shawna Seigel

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The theme for the Internet Retailer Web Design Conference
08 was all about Designing Web Sites That Sizzle and Sell!

If you didn’t read our first post on the conference then

you might want to read:

Hello From Miami Internet Retail Conference!

Let’s pick up where we left off by discussing some of the
great speakers at the conference!

Jennifer Bailey, Usability Services Manager from ForeSee Results, provided
an excellent speech on Usability Principles. The focus of the speech was
following the rules to keep customers in mind. For instance, most
customers are used to seeing navigation of the website on the left. Straying
away from having your navigation on the left side of your website could hurt
your conversion rates. Ms. Bailey suggests breaking the “rules” only when there
is a compelling benefit. She also stated that there usually is no real
compelling benefit when it comes right down to it.

Ms. Bailey suggests:

  • Make it easy for customers to hone in on and locate
    products and content of interest.

  • Don’t make customers give up because it is “too
    difficult” to get around

  • Give your customers adequate control as they browse
    and shop

  • Put critical info above the fold (add to cart button)

  • People scan left to right. Place cross-sells secondary
    in the shopping cart. You don’t want to confuse people and lose the sale.

  • Huge links at the bottom of the website; this does not
    enhance the user experience. Neither does tons of SEO text.

  • Think about your customers and write for them. If you
    need help, join our Mentor Program for lessons on copyrighting for
    your website.

  • Group personalization links together

  • Increase the size of your search box so that customers
    can see what they are typing in as well as allowing your customers to feel
    that they can add more text

  • Make sure you have a link to the shopping cart at the
    top of your webpage.

  • Do not put an add to cart button next to a check out
    button on an item page. This causes confusion for your customers. Are they
    supposed to add to cart or check out?

  • Show a progress indicator as your customers go through
    the check out process. This way they know ahead of time how much work is
    expected out of them. Let them know how many steps they will have.

  • The biggest, never make it mandatory for customers to
    “register” in order to check out. Customers want options.

Another phenomenal speaker was Shari Thurow ,Founder and SEO Director of
Omni Marketing Interactive. She has a wonderful book called; "Search Engine Visibility"
and she offered the following tips:


  • Meet your users expectations

    • Make things that are “clickable” look “clickable”.
      Make sure that things that are not “clickable” do not look like they
      should be clicked on. This will cause distrust in your website.

    • Appropriate labels with icons

    • Allow site visitors to turn on/off rich media

    • Provide a sense of place

    • Validate the “scent of information”

  • Do not assume site visitors want rich media

  • Beware of rich medias impact on your search engine

  • The ease with which users are able to find desired
    information BEFORE they view a page and while they are viewing a web page
    will provide:

    • Effectiveness

    • Learnability

    • Efficiency

    • Error prevention

    • User satisfaction

I will be back with more information! Stay tuned!

by: Shawna Seigel

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Friday, February 01, 2008
In the middle of a great conference on web design and usability, I was emailed the news about MSN’s offer to buy Yahoo! Don’t you love Smartphone’s?

So how can I concentrate now?

My mind is racing with the wonderful opportunities of a merger between the two. And since the price of Yahoo! Stocks jumped over 50%, obviously Wall Street sees the opportunities too.

How will this affect your Yahoo! Store (The Yahoo Merchant Solutions)? The significant offer that MSN has made to buy the Yahoo indicates the value of the Yahoo Brand. Microsoft is saying Yahoo is worth $45 billion, regardless of what the stock price is. Currently, with the stock's rise, Yahoo is valued at around $37 billion, according to the market.

Stay tuned for more details. We will update you as soon as we hear more.

by: Shawna Seigel

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Big news on business front, Microsoft has offered $44 billion to buy Yahoo. Read the full article here.

by: Shawna Seigel

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