In today's web-centric environment, with a majority of consumers expecting businesses to offer their products and services online, e-commerce sites have become more the rule rather than the exception. To boost revenue and capitalize on a global market of web shoppers, it's essential for today's companies to establish an online presence. By learning the essentials of eBusiness, you'll have a solid foundation for starting your own online business, and will also become more marketable when seeking employment with online companies.
Typical e-commerce training courses will focus on how the Internet has changed the landscape of marketing, sales, customer service, graphic design, and retailing. You'll learn about the benefits and drawbacks of electronic selling, the technical framework necessary to execute it, and how it has impacted our world's economy. Other topics include creating a business plan for an online business, finding beneficial investors and affiliates, and the importance of a clean, user-friendly website design.
An e-commerce training program can benefit anyone who works in any component of eBusiness, from entrepreneurs to employees to managers. IT professionals will also find relevant content in these courses. Whether you plan to start your own online business or are in a role that supports a web-based company, e-commerce training can help to boost your earning power and minimize your level of risk.
Search Engine Marketing
Search engine marketing or search marketing refers to marketing that seeks to promote websites by getting them greater natural visibility in the search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. As consumers become more web savvy, they are starting to understand the difference between paid advertising and organic, or natural, listings in the search engines. Businesses that show up in the natural listings are usually viewed as more credible, and more relevant, by the person searching.
A business that can run an effective search engine campaign can get their website positioned at the top of the search engine results and create a massive amount of high quality traffic to their site. (Search engine traffic tends to convert at a much higher percentage than paid advertising.) The top three positions are by far the most lucrative. Over 80% of all users never look further than the top three search results.
So how does a business get their site listed at the top? It really all boils down to popularity. One of the main ways that Google decides if your site is relevant is to see how many other sites believe it's important enough to link to. The more high value web pages that link to yours (without a reciprocal link from your site) the more relevant Google views your site. These are called one-way links, and they factor heavily in how Google determines search engine ranking.
This is one of the reasons that Web 2.0 sites have become so popular for marketers. They have high page rank with Google (which means they're high value). Even better, a business is able to create its own content on the site and link it back to their webpage. If, for instance, a business posts a video on YouTube.com with a link back to their site, that would be considered a high value link.
Other ways to get high value links are to submit press releases, submit articles to article directories, comment on high value blogs, make posts on forums (with a link in your signature back to your site), and submit videos and create podcasts.
The ultimate goal in search engine marketing is really to create a web of sites linking into the main 'money site' of a business. You can also use blogs, and sites like Squidoo, My Space, Twitter, and Facebook to create other Web 2.0 properties for just this purpose. These sites are not only great for back-linking, they also create a steady stream of targeted visitors to a company's site.
To make your links even more powerful, use keyword rich anchor text whenever possible. Anchor text refers to the text that actually links to the site. Many times people will just use the domain name (yoursite.com) or something generic like, "Click Here". It's not nearly as effective as using keywords that you're trying to rank for. If, for instance, a business wanted to be at the top of the listings for the keyword search term, 'Financial advisor in Tulsa', those are the words that should be used as the anchor text to link back to the site.
Finally, there are things a company can do 'on-site' – meaning on their web page – to help increase search engine ranking as well. The most important is to make sure there are relevant search terms in the web page content, and that the site gets updated on a regular basis. Google sees newer content as more relevant, which is one of the reasons blogs have become so popular with marketers.
Search engine marketing is really based around the fact that the search engines are trying to provide the end user with the most relevant and targeted information on their search term. The more a company can provide this for the user, and show social proof of this as well (with back-links), the better chance a company has of dominating the search engines, and their market.
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