Monday, December 21, 2009

The Importance of Tracking Traffic to Your Website

There are so many people out there who believe that as long as they're getting traffic to their website, and they know they're getting traffic to their site, that it doesn't matter where the traffic is coming from. Those people are wrong. To be honest, if you're not tracking your traffic effectively, you could be losing thousands of dollars a month. How? Well, are you paying for Internet advertising of any kind? If so, do you know how much traffic is coming in from each ad? Perhaps there isn't any traffic coming in from any of your paid advertising which means no conversions, if so, why are you paying to advertise if you get nothing in return?

The interesting thing is that you may be getting the majority of your conversions through various sites that are ranking on the first page of search engines for your specified keywords. If this is the case, you are receiving thousands of dollars of free advertising; something any business should be ecstatic to get. I mean, really, what business doesn't like receiving free advertising, free traffic, and free conversions.


It's about time you stop paying for unnecessary adwords that aren't even bringing in any conversions. Keeping any kind of ad that you're not actually making any money off of is like pouring money down the drain. If an ad isn't converting, it's time to change it. Constant corrections and changes are a necessity when advertising online. So you're getting clicks, good for you, but if you're not getting conversions what's the point of paying for people to simply view your website?

Social Media and Articles

How much of your traffic is coming from social media sites and articles you have posted on the web? This is something to consider as you try to link it to ranking organically. What exactly are you doing to help your site rank? It's very important to track the percentage of conversions that are actually coming from social media and article marketing. If it's working for you and it's getting you ranked in search engines, keep at it.

Ranking in Search Engines

If your site is ranking high in search engines for your designated keywords, you may not even need paid advertising. In fact, you might be funneling thousands of dollars into pay per click ads that aren't actually converting. If this is the case, perhaps it's time to reassign your marketing budget and decide if search engine optimization should carry greater weight than pay per click advertising.

All in all, it's up to each individual company to decide what is going to work best for them. Assess the marketing goals of your company in order to discern if your current marketing strategy is helping you reach them. If it is, keep up the good work but continue to search for anything else you could do in order to make even more improvements. If it's not working at all for you, it's probably a good time to do a marketing overhaul.

For more information, please visit Thrive Learning Institute.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Thrive Learning Institute Podcasts Help Students Learn

Press Release - For Immediate Release - December 7, 2009

Thrive Learning Institute Podcasts Help Students Learn

Students of the Thrive Learning Institute are getting fast-breaking tech news and up to the minute internet marketing advice via the "Audible Commerce" Podcast. The weekly half-hour audio show shares discussion of the latest in tech business.

The podcast often includes interviews with SEO gurus and other computer professionals. A recent episode featured discussion with a top Utah-based SEO firm. Their rep shared his insights into the value of inbound linking, and strategies to get those links.

"It's often difficult for our students, many of whom are still working out the building of a website or a blog, to understand the intricacies of the news in the tech world." Said Jim Young, "But that news can have a strong impact on their businesses." Recent tech news segments in the podcast have included commentary on Windows 7, and discussions of how mergers among the big companies can impact smaller mom-and-pop web shops.

The Audible Commerce Podcast resides within the Thrive Learning Institute's online learning center, recently updated to version 3.0. This update included not only a revised interface (completely reworked to facilitate access and learning), but a full revision of the curriculum as well. The podcast was added along with the new material, to give students an additional method of receiving the information. The podcast format also allows for discussion of more immediate and timely topics.

Jim Young continued, "The Audible Commerce podcast shows Thrive's committment to helping our students learn, no matter what background they bring to the table." He added that the podcast hosts are experts at taking complex technical issues and making them understandable to those without a deep tech background. Those that are more experienced in the computer world are still finding benefit by learning about the money-making applications.

Some of the more business-related topics that have been covered include the importance of branding in the long-term promotion of a website, as well as how having a secure computer can impact your business. How can having an obviously secure website impact your ability to convert visitors into buyers? How can having good keywords impact your search engine ranking?

For more information on how to access the Audible Commerce podcast, visit the Thrive Learning Institute's website,

Thrive Learning Institute
512 W 800 N
Orem UT, 84057

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Search Engine Optimization vs. Pay Per Click

There are a lot of people out there who are dumping more and more money into what some would call a lost cause. They are literally throwing money away, apparently with the idea that money is made to be lost. There is, however, an easier way, a way to multiply money instead of giving it up. In this article, I will be discussing the difference between search engine optimization and pay per click.

Okay, so the biggest difference should be inherently obvious to everyone, yep, you guessed it. Search engine optimization is free, whereas, pay per click uses that one little word that sends shivers up and down the spines of new business owners and seasoned veterans alike, “pay”. I suppose it's all well and good until you begin adding up all the costs of pay per click, it's then that your tongue swells and it all of a sudden becomes hard to speak, hard to breath. This is the point where you finally realize that you have actually lost $20 on the sale you just made on your small niche website; it's the point where you realize that your pay per click campaigns are eating giant holes in your profit. In fact, they're not just eating giant holes in it; they're devouring it, eliminating it all together.

You find yourself scrambling for a solution, a way to kill that ugly beast that continually eats without lamentation. You find the solution, could this really be? A way to get more traffic by paying nothing at all? After pinching your arm to wake yourself, you find that this is not a dream. The answer, search engine optimization. A way to give your site notice in search engines without spending a single red cent on it.

You know, there is a much easier way, get rid of the profit eating beast. Within months, you can actually be ranking on the first page of Search Engines. This happens if you're smart about things and build good quality links. Of course, you may have to lean on pay per click for long enough to get ranking on your own so that you don't lose traffic all together. Once you're ranking high in search engines, you may decide to get rid of pay per click, I would. You'll find that when this happens, your traffic will rise and so will your profit.

Give it a shot, it can't hurt, right? Get out there and do some research on Search Engine Optimization and Marketing. You may be surprised at some of the simple things one may do to help their site rank higher in search engines such as Google. You can start with working on the obvious things (ie. Your title and content) then you can move into some of the more intricate details of search engine optimization. For more information about search engine optimization, please read the Thrive Learning Institute Blog. And, trust me, it will be worth your effort to get very familiar with search engine optimization and how it can help you save expenses.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Marketing: Back to Basics for Small Business

Writing a business plan can be the most difficult element of business. Executing the business plan is also very difficult at times but writing it presents a myriad of challenges. It can take months to write a decent business plan, but don't loose patience. Then again, if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. If you're struggling writing a business plan, perhaps it's time to consult an expert.

This article will walk you through the sections of a business plan. After reading this, you should have a pretty good idea of what you need to do in order to get started on your plan. Doing research on and including these sections in your business plan, will help you formulate better decisions about your business and how to lay it out.

There are several sections every business plan should contain. These sections include: executive summary, company description, product/service description, market analysis, operations, web plan, management summary, critical risks, financial plan, and the appendix.

Executive Summary

The executive summary should be a summary of everything that is in the document as a whole. One should be able to read your executive summary and understand what each section of your business plan will cover.

Company Description

Your company description will describe the legalities of the company. It will also tell about how the company got started and its history.

Product/Service Description

What exactly are you selling? Describe the product or service you are putting out on the market. Make sure you describe the benefits which it has and how it is going to benefit your target consumer.

Market Analysis

Who is your target market? What is the demographic and psychographic of your customers? What needs are you fulfilling with your product or service?


How is this whole thing going to operate? What kind of management plan are you going to have? Create a calendar of how your plan will be implemented; make this trackable and fulfillable

Web Plan

This section is included if your company or service is online. Discuss any and all aspects of your business which are online.

Management Summary

This will show how your company is going to be organized and also tells about the management team such as who is on it, etc.

Critical Risks

Describe any risks which are in the area such as competition and environmental risks.

Financial Plan

Include any accounting information such as cash flow tables and information on your predicted profit and loss on a profit and loss sheet.


Include any sheets such as the complete financial results in this appendix and then site that it is there in the actual document.

You don't have to start writing a business plan in this specific order, in fact, I believe it will be easier not to. Simply use common sense and complete it in an order which makes sense to you.