Wednesday, September 17, 2008

A Rule for Writing Content for Your Website:

Be Brief:

You should always remember to be concise in your writing. It should be clear and easy to understand, and easy to skim. It should not be so long that people dread reading it. If they do, they will just move on to the next website.
  • Short sentences help.
  • Bulleted lists help.
  • Italicized or bold text help.
By being brief, you are making what you do say more memorable for visitors, and often more clear for the search engines.

For more on how quality coaching companies can help you build your website, visit

Monday, September 15, 2008

AdWords: Google is Your Friend!

Google is the creator of dozens of useful tools, especially when it comes to the realms of internet marketing. Of these tools, one in particular stands out -- Google AdWords.

In short summary, Google AdWords allows you to get your website "sponsored," and placed in the first few entries on Google. You only pay Google when someone clicks on your Ad (thus, visiting your website), so it's relatively easy to make sure that this form of marketing is profitable.

While this is highly beneficial, you should only consider this service strongly if you are selling a product or service that has a real profit margin. Since you will be paying anywhere from 5 to 50 cents per click, you want to be sure that each "conversion" covers the cost of your marketing, and leaves you with a decent profit for your effort.

For example, if your online business is an affiliate website, and you gain profit only off of the Ads on your site, and you get an average of a dollar per Ad Click on your site, you probably don't want to spend a lot of money to get the clicking traffic to your website.

However, in e-commerce sites, Google AdWords provides an amazing marketing tool for your company. With appropriate keyword research and Ad writing, you may end up paying as little as a few cents per click. Since "target conversion rate" for an online business should be around 3%, that means that for every 33 clicks, you should have a sale. Imagine, for example, that you're paying 10 cents per click for traffic that is already searching for your product. With a 3% conversion rate, that means you're only paying $3.30 per sale. Depending on your profit margin, this may be an incredible boost in overall sales and profit.

AdWords requires a lot of research and a fair amount of maitenance to run effectively. To find out how a coaching company can help you in setting up an effective Google AdWords Campaign, help you market your website, and help you increase profit in your small online business, visit

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Passive Income: The Truth

If you have been looking around at work-from-home styled jobs, you have undoubtably seen ads that try to convince you that you can "work from home, making hundreds every day while only working two hours per week!" Once again, we have to ask the question -- is this legitimate?

The truth is, this kind of pitch is an oversell of something that is very plausible. Affiliate websites, using Google Adsense or direct banner ads, can give a very fair amount of revenue. But what can you realistically make off of an AdSense website?

Many "non-experts" find that they can create an affiliate website that generates between $1 and $3 per day. This is, of course, after their website has been found by Google, and is being viewed by a fair amount of people. So, this ranges from $30 per month to $90 per month. And how much work does a website or blog like this take? Well, you should generally post about once per week to keep your ranking up and your followers happy -- so often under 1 hour of real work per week. So, for between 2 and 4 hours of work you can get between $30 and $90. That means you're paying yourself anywhere from $7.50 per hour to $45.00 per hour. Not bad, by any means!

However, I know very few people who can pay the bills off of $90 per month. So there are a few directions to go to increase this amount of revenue. Option 1 -- you can focus on making one or two websites very successful. Option 2 -- you can build a hundred different websites and increase your $90 to $9000 per month. Option 3 -- you can go somewhere in-between, focusing on a few websites (generally under 20) which all receive a higher income than your typical AdSense site.

There are downfalls with each of these methods.

Option 1, it is very difficult to find a single category or subject that will pay you enough to support you off of one website. It's possible -- that's where these people claiming their hundreds of dollars a day are coming from. It is also very difficult to do search engine optimization for a website well enough that you can make this kind of income. Sites like this will take a lot more care and attention, and will have to be a great "discovery" of a niche market that is not yet saturated.

In addition, if Google changes its search parameters and you're pushed down a page, your income may fall through the floor! You are far more susceptible to the whims of the internet, and most of us don't like our income to be based on something that risky.

Option 2 has very different problems. First, you will have to find 100 websites that can generate income. Though you can spout off a lot of gibberish without much effort, it won't make you much money. You have to find profitable keywords. No one is going to pay to have their farm animals sold online, for example, so you probably don't want to blog or make a website about farm animals. So you have to do the research to find 100 different websites. You have to then build 100 websites. Even if these are pre-made blogs, this is going to be difficult to do, and highly time consuming.

Also, to make even the $1 to $5 per blog, you will have to do some basic marketing for the websites, posting your link on directories, forums, etc. So the setup time for Option 2 is pretty massive. To set up 100 effective, money-making blogs, and market them, may well takes months of hard work. If you decide this is what you want to do, don't expect any less than a few hundred hours of work before your website are making you the money you want. In addition, you have to maintain these websites for them to be profitable! Even if you know your subjects, and can post quickly and effectively, you can expect to be working 50 hour work weeks.

Then again -- $9000 a month is nothing to scoff at, and if your objective is earning a lot of money, and you don't mind putting in the effort, this may be a viable solution for you.

Option 3 tends to be the most effective and successful. Setting up a dozen blogs or websites is far easier than setting up a hundred, and your general "labor" after setup will probably be somewhere between 6 and 24 hours per week, meaning that your schedule will be very flexible. However, you should still expect to invest the equivalent of 3-4 full time work weeks to get these blogs/websites up and running.

With effective online marketing and updating, which takes time, patience, study, and experience, you may well see each website generating $5 to $15 per day (this is a reasonable goal -- you will likely be frustrated if you aim too far above this). Just to make the numbers here more clear, with a dozen sites, that may be anywhere from $60 to $180 per day, or between $1800 and $5400 per month. This is the equivalent of somewhere between a $75 per hour to a $900 per hour income, for the time you are actually investing.

Of course, knowing the general outline of making money through blogs, or affiliate marketing websites, is one thing. Knowing the details of how to do is successfully is something entirely different.

For more information on how a coaching company can help you in building your own affiliate website empire, and generate great money online with a reasonable time investment, simply visit

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Business Blogs

Since you're here, on our blog, I think I can assume that you know something about what a blog is. However, for those who just happen to have stumbled across this Blog, allow me to go back to basics.

The word "blog" is a shortening of "Web Log," and thanks to Blogger, terms like "blogging" and "bloggers" have become more a part of our cultural phenomena over the last few years. This is because it's now very easy to set up a blog.

And "blogging?" Well, blogging can be anything. If I tell the world my grandma is sick on a blog, that's blogging. If I talk about my new girlfriend, that's blogging. If I talk about my political beliefs, that's blogging. If I talk about religion, that's blogging. If I talk about how vanilla is the best ice cream, that's blogging.

And most importantly, if I talk about my company, my products, and my company's quality, that's most definitely blogging! This is where blogs come in as a part of your business. Is it mandatory to have a blog for your online business? No, not mandatory. But it does help you with the search engines.

The more people link to your website, the more popular that site will become. The more relevant the pages that links are on happen to be, the more powerful that link will be. So by creating a blog, you can link to your website through a highly, highly relevant website. In short, you will start to get a better page rank, your search engine ranking and SEO will improve, and you may generate some independent leads through your blog.

So what should you include in the blog to make it most effective? Should you have just one, or multiple? How much does it really impact your ranking? How can you make sure your blog is visible?

Even after explaining a lot of the details, there are always going to be more questions. To find out more about how a coaching company can help answer your questions, and introduce you to many more ways to market your website, simply visit

Monday, September 8, 2008

The Power of a Logo

One thing that commonly comes up during the creation of a business is building a Logo. Many people feel that having a company logo is unimportant, or at least not something that should be a preliminary concern for their business. Others (often those trying to sell you the logo) argue that a logo is the single most important thing you can do to help your business. As usual, the truth lies somewhere in-between the two extremes.

So, what is a logo? What is the real power of a logo? What does it do for you? Why is it important? What's a good amount to pay for one? What should you keep in mind in designing your logo? These are just a few of the common questions regarding logo design, and I'll go into each of them briefly.

What is a logo?
A logo is an image or stylized text (or a combination of the two) which identifies your business. It is not a photograph, it is not a picture of your product, and it is not a description of your business.

This logo should definitely be located on your website. It should also be located on all printed marketing materials, banner ads, business cards, etc. People should come to associate your logo with your company, so using it repeatedly will help ingrain the image into the minds of your clients.

Here are a few famous logos to help give you the idea of what a logo is:

What is the real power of a logo?

There are two major points to mention with a logo. The first major power of a logo is professionalism. Having your own logo gives a clear sense that your company has invested into itself. This makes your company feel more legitimate to your buyers. This is the primary way a logo will pay for itself. People are far more likely to buy from an online business that looks and feels professional.

The second major power of a logo is memorability. It is easier to remember your company when you are using a logo. You may know McDonalds without its logo, but when you see the golden arches, you instantly recognize "This is McDonalds." And what does this mean for you and your business? First, it makes marketing more effective by making your website and company more memorable. Second, it makes your website itself more memorable. Customer loyalty is one of the major keys to success, and having a solid logo can strongly help with this.

These are, of course, the reasons why a logo is important as well. No, a logo will not double your sales! No, it will not make your business miraculously appear on the first page of the google search engines. But it will increase your conversion rate, and it will increase your return customers.

What's a good amount to pay for a logo?

This is a difficult question to answer, but mostly because there are a lot of details that go into a logo. How complex is the logo? Is it just stylized text, or does it include a custom image or graphic? How many versions of the logo will you receive? How many revisions are you allowed to make?

A good price may be anywhere from about $99 to $999 for a solid logo for a start-up company. What we recommend is that you find a company that will give you at least 1 set of revisions (in other words, doesn't hand you a logo and refuse to do extra work on it), and preferably will give you two sets of revisions or more. We also recommend that you either find a logo creation company that will give you multiple logo concepts up front, or will give additional logo concepts if you are not satisfied with the first version. We also recommend that you find a company that will provide more than simply stylized text.

A good cost to pay for this type of logo is between $300 and $400. As an example of a good company, Clover Logos is the primary logo design company we recommend at Thrive. They have assisted dozens of our clients in creating an excellent, professional logo to help their business succeed.

What should I keep in mind when designing my logo?

You should keep in mind about 80 different things while designing your logo. However, there are a couple of basic principles to follow.

First -- make sure it reflects the tone of your business. Don't have a black and gray corporate logo for your children's toys business, and don't have a pink, yellow, green and orange bubble text logo for your office supplies business.

Second -- keep it simple. You should be able to shrink or expand this logo to the size of a business card or the size of a billboard, and it should still be recognizable.

In short summary, a logo is important for every business that wants to come across as authentic and legitimate. It is important to increase return customers. Don't kill yourself over the cost, but put it pretty high on your priority list (probably just below setting up your legal entity, website, and getting your products or dropshipper).

For more information on how a coaching company can help you with the creation and branding of your business, simply visit

Friday, September 5, 2008

The "Buying Mood"

Though many people searching the web are interested in buying a product immediately, certainly not all people are. They may be looking to see how much a product costs, they may be comparing online products, or they may simply be daydreaming. "Wouldn't it be nice if I could buy this."

So, what can you do to turn these browsers and daydreamers into buyers on your online business? Well, there are dozens of tactics, but pretty much all of them full under the category of "setting the buying mood." Creating an atmosphere that encourages buying your product, providing incentives, and more, can help set this buying mood.

Here are just a couple of quick tips to help you in creating that atmosphere for your clients:
  • Use emotion evoking images. If you're selling baby products, then you should definitely have some happy, laughing, smiling babies. If you're selling television sets, you should have a family or couple gathered around the TV, perfectly happy and content. Most people want to purchase these items because they have a specific fantasy of what the product is going to do for them. Help build that fantasy through emotion evoking images.

  • Provide clearly visible incentives. And make sure you're providing something! Even if you have the same products at the same final prices, your competitor who has a visible "20% Off!" sale is going to close more than you do. Sales are a great way to do this. With many products, free shipping is another excellent way. Free gifts, buy one get one half off, and many other possible incentives will serve to increase your overall profit.

  • Make sure navigation is clear and simple. Nothing discourages customers more than not being able to find the product they want on your site. If you have images of a product on your home page, make sure that image links directly to that specific product. Make sure all your categories are clearly visible on your site, immediately. People should never struggle to find what they're looking for, because if they do, they're likely to move on to the next website.
These are just a few of the things you can do to to increase your number of buyers by turning the casual browsers into your clients. When it comes to e-commerce, your conversion rate (the percentage of people that come to your website who actually purchase your product) can vastly alter your profit. Remember, the difference between a 2% and a 3% conversion rate could mean the difference between $50,000 and $75,000 a year.

To learn more about how a coaching company can help you build your website in a way that increases your conversion rate, and helps set that buying mood, simply visit