Business on the Internet – Internet Linking Explained â€“ Based on Mutual Benefit – not as different from offline business as you may think.
There seems to be a certain mystique about technology today, especially about the Internet. I remember in the early 90’s before I got on-line, I had read dozens of magazine articles on the Internet.
This was way before Google and even before AOL. I was led to believe that the Internet was some vast medium for entertainment, and it sounded similar to TV, except unlike TV, you could choose what to watch.
What I found when I finally got on-line, was that the Internet was not really about entertainment at all. It was more like a vast Electronic Library of information, except that unlike books, the electronic pages were “linked” together. I was fascinated that you could move instantly, (well not exactly, since I had a dial-up modem connection), from one page to another one, with a simple click of the mouse. We all take this for granted now, but as my daughter asks me, â€œWhat was the world like before the Internetâ€ ? It is so much a part of many of our lives that it is hard to imagine the world without it.
At the time, I wondered, why no one could tell me that the Internet was like a big electronic library, where web sites were like electronic magazines all linked together. It seemed so simple for me to explain once I experienced it, but everything I had read up until that point had fallen short, and failed to describe it adequately.
The same thing is true, it seems of business on the Internet these days. If someone knows how to market on the Internet, they are treated like a guru. Why is it so hard to find someone who will explain how to do business on the Internet in a clear and straightforward way, that every one can understand ?
Through this simple introductory article, I will try to demystify one essential Internet business strategyÂ called Linking, or as defined by the most popular search engine on the planet, Google Linking.
It is important to remember that the vast majority of businesses in the US are still what I would call brick and mortar businesses. There is a building with a street address, that has overhead, and all that goes with it. If you have a â€œbrick and mortar businessâ€, and you want to stay in business, and become successful, you need to provide a valuable product or service to your customers, and treat your customers well, regardless of the type of business you run.
Think of either businesses you have worked for in the past, (even your own), or places you like to visit to shop, or even companies you know where you would like to work, if you were given the chance.
If you want to just survive, you can do business as usual, without changing anything, (if you are lucky, that is), but if you want to grow your business, you must subscribe to the principle of “Mutual Benefit”.
In other words, you must make your customers happy, and yourself happy at the same time. In fact, both parties must share equally in this mutual benefit. If you or your customer are happy when the other is not, the relationship will inevitably break down.
In addition if there is never any kind of personal relationship, as well as an offer of a good quality product or service at a reasonable price, there also may not be a long term relationship.
There is sort of a Law of the Universe at work here, and the Universal Law applies to an Internet business just as well as it does to a typical â€œbrick and mortarâ€ business. The only real difference is that you may never actually meet your customers face to face. That is not to say that you can’t have a personal relationship with them. They will just have to get to know you, and you will have to get to know them, through the medium of the Internet.
If you overcharge your customers, you will find them searching out your competitors. If you let your customers dictate your prices, or the level of service you provide to them, and let them take advantage of you, than you will not be happy about their return business.
Often, this seems like a delicate balancing act between you and your customers, but those who strike the right balance will have plenty of return customers year after year.Â Â If you are trying to get rich quick, just like in mainstream business, you are very likely to be sadly disappointed.
Think back to all the companies you worked for in the past. If you evaluate these business from the perspective of mutual benefit, you will discover something very interesting. First of all, those that merely survived and those that thrived will have either followed this principle closely or ignored it.
Also, those that followed the mutual benefit principle were enjoyable places to visit as a customer, or as an employee. Those that disregarded mutual benefit were likely distasteful places to work, or even worse, what I would call â€œliving nightmaresâ€. What is good for my customer, and good for me in equal proportion, that is what determines long term success.
The same is true on the Internet. Don’t ever think that you can cheat someone on the Internet. Sooner,Â Â or later, you will likely fall flat on your face, and be sadly disappointed at the outcome.
Think of all of the relationships you made with your customers as “links” to prosperity. The quality and quantity of these relationships are the measure of a healthy business. These relationships did not come easily, they had to be earned.
Internet Business, works the same way. Think of all of the electronic links to your site as friends of your business, even if they have never, and most likely will never purchase your product or service. Treat them all with respect as though they were your customers. The quantity and quality of these links will determine the type of page rank your site will have.
This is not easy, and in fact, involves some plain old hard work, in terms of as time and effort. If you pursue the appropriate keywords for your industry that have a reasonable amount of traffic, and get these keywords from another site â€œlinkedâ€ to your site, especially high quality sites with a good page rank, you will find yourself with plenty of quality traffic to your site that you will be able to convert into sales.
I am reminded of a book, by Ray Esquith called “There are no Shortcuts”. He is a Disney Teacher of the year, and a well respected elementary school teacher in urban LA, who quite simply works harder at teaching than any one else, and his students produce superior results year after year.
There are web sites all over the Internet promising quick riches for little or no work.Â How many people actually made money in the Gold Rush, and how many just sweated it out ?Â There is simply no push button or lazy man’s way to riches on the Internet, just as in mainstream business.Â Unfortunately, there are too many unscrupulous marketers on the Internet, who promise much and deliver little or nothing, to fools who are eager to part with their money.
If you want to earn a high page rank on Google, you can;t push a magic button, and you can’t buy your way there, you have to earn it. Look at CNN.com for example. This web site has a page rank of 9 out of a possible 10. There are probably hundreds of people creating and editing content that changes on a moment to moment basis, on their web site. CNN.com had (at last check), over 180,000 web pages that link to it. Is it any wonder that their web site is so highly rated ?
Don’t be scared and think that your small business has to become like CNN. The best and fastest way to get your site to the top of the search engines is, surprisingly to write a press release.Â Don’t get scared off by this, it really is no big deal.Â You just have to become a miniaturized, small scale, cnn.com correspondent to begin your journey to success on the Internet.Â In the days before the Internet, you would not have any hope of this, but now thanks to the Internet you can become a mini cnn.com and be successful with a very small percentage of the success of CNN.com.
What your press release will do is create a back link to your web site that will rate very highly with Google.Â How do you start ? Begin by thinking like a tiny CNN correspondent. Is there anything that might be interesting or newsworthy about your business ? It doesn’t need to be something that would featured in the newspaper or on TV.
This is mini-journalism, or micro journalism.Â It is the new medium called the World Wide Democratic Web, where even the little guy can get the attention he deserves.Â Find something interesting about your business, and sit down in front of the computer and write about it. This is not as traumatic as you might think. Keep it to the point. Keep it simple, choose only one topic at first, and try to make it interesting.
Don’t forget to never use the first person, always write in the 3rd person in an objective and straightforward manner, stating fact and not opinion. Don’t sell, tell, instead. Everyone on the Internet wants information. If you do not strictly observe this rule, your press release will not be accepted.
Make sure that you have done your research on Google, (“Google keywords” is a good place to begin). There are a number of sites to get good information on which keywords to select. Use Google and just type in whatever you want to find out.Â Keywords that are specific to your industry are the most valuable because they are the most relevant, even though they might not generate a great deal of traffic. Always be on the lookout for keywords that are relevant, and have substantial traffic.
It is better to be listed in the top 3 pages for a category that has 1 million references, then page 10 of a 50 million hit category.Â (Check the number of hits on the top right of the page on Google each time you do a Google search).Â Note:Â if you are trying to challenge a very large category such one with 50 million hits, you may need to employ additional linking strategies over and above what is mentioned in this article.Â Â It may even be wise to hire a Search Engine Professional to assist you.Â By the way, if you lay a good foundation for assistance by a “SEO Pro”, by following these methods, you will have saved yourself a great deal of expense.Â You may also find an SEO Strategy company with very reasonable rates.
Write using these keywords several times in a short 250-300 word article, and submit your press release using one of the free press release sites on the Internet. Write as many press releases as you can over a 30 day period. 10 releases are good, 20 are even better.Â You can also send them out to several different press release sites.Â Read their guidelines for submission and learn their rules. Always make sure to put a link to your web site, in the correct section.
Try this for 30 days, and see what is does to your listing on Google ! You may be very pleasantly surprised.
by John Lombaerde – a CAD/CAM/CNC Specialist with over 20 years experience in advanced manufacturing technologies. He is a Designer, CNC Programmer, CNC machininst, CAD/CAM consultant, and a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategist.
For more information, see http://www.cadcamconsulting.com