Thursday, February 22, 2007

An Easy Way To Dress Up Your Site

Do you know what,,,,,,,, and all have in common?

I'll give you a clue.

Look at the page url in your browser's address bar. It's way up at the top of your browser.

And if you happen to be using a browser that has tabs like Explorer 7 or FireFox and have several tabs open then look at the tab for this page.

Do you notice anything?

Hopefully you see an image with the letter "B" for Blogger in front of the url.

That little picture is called a favicon and favicons are used by many of the better known sites to help you remember them.

Another great things about favicons is that they not only show up on the browser but these little guys also show up in your Favorites or Bookmarks list. So when someone adds your site to their favorites, instead of getting lost in the other hundreds of listed sites, your site stands out.

Now making a favicon isn't difficult. The big things to remember are:

  • Favicons must be 16 pixels by 16 pixels.
  • Favicons use 24 bit color.
  • Favicons must have a file type of .ico

There are 2 easy ways to create a favicon from 1 of your images.

  1. The do-it-yourself Method

    Get a free copy of Irfanview, it's 1 of the free resources inside our member area. (It's listed under Website Help.)

    After it's installed open Irfanview and turn on it's screen capture. (That's under the Options menu.)

    Then using your text processing program like Word or your favorite html editor, insert the picture you want to use on a blank page. If you want the picture to be surrounded by a color other than white change the page color.

    Do a screen capture. (That's Ctrl plus F11 for Irfanview.)

    Crop off all the extra stuff around your picture.

    Resize the picture to 16 x 16.

    Save the picture as file type ico.
  2. The Use-A-Tool Method

    There is a Favicon Creator tool that does all of the above steps for you.

After you have the favicon created you simply add this line of code between the <head> and </head> of your web page.

<link rel="shortcut icon" href="favicon.ico">

You can name your favicon anything you want as long as you remember to put the .ico extension on it and you can have the favicon anywhere on your site as long as you put the correct path to the file inside the "favicon.ico" quotes.

After you save your page upload it and your favicon.ico files to your host.
Now you've just made your site stand out from the crowd in your visitors' sea of bookmarks.

So have some fun and dress up your site by creating your own favicon.

To Your Success,

PS Using a tool to create your favicons can really save time so you'll be able to create more. Then you can use different ones for different pages on your site if you like.

To get more information about the tool mentioned in today's tip Click Here.

Friday, February 16, 2007

This Is Your Wake Up Call

It's time for all internet marketers and internet marketer wannabes to Wake Up.

We are not in the 1990's any more. What used to work then just doesn't cut it any more.

We've crossed over into a new millennium. It's now the year 2007 where lizards sell car insurance, you can lose weight by having prepared meals shipped to your home and kids know more about what's going on than their parents. (OK kids have always thought they knew more but now they sometimes actually do!)

And if you've been sleeping or not paying attention you may not know that the internet and internet marketing have changed. No longer can you put a page online, optimize it with a few keywords and expect to get a decent ranking in any of the search engines. You can't entice people to join your "Make A Million Overnight While You Sleep" program by running an ad or using pay-per-click. You can't put your free affiliate page in a traffic exchange program and expect to make sales or get others to join under you.

It's time to wake up because none of these and most of the other things internet marketers used in the 90's work any more.

Why am I telling you this?

Because the 2 problems every internet marketer has and work on every day are:
  1. Getting traffic

  2. Getting conversions

And every year the "experts" comes out with a new way to solve the problem.

Do the new ways work?

Yes, most of them do. At least they work for awhile if you use them properly.

Over the last few years in the internet marketing niche we've had:

  • Giveaways
  • Free Membership Sites
  • Lock-in Your Price Sales
  • 100% Affiliate Commission

Now if you are awake can you answer this question?

What is the 1 thing all of the items in the above list have in common?

If you guessed affiliate programs you are 75% correct. (The 100% Affiliate Commission products don't usually have a managed affiliate program.)

If you guessed 1 time offers you're getting closer since all of them can have a 1 time offer however this option is not always used.

If you guessed getting signups then you're right on because very single one of those things was used to build somebody's list.

If you guessed "appealing to the visitor's greed factor" you are also correct. No one wants to buy anything, not even us. Everybody wants something for nothing. And if someone has to buy what you're offering the first time they see your site then it better be a really good deal that either saves or makes them money.

If you guessed "leveraging" you were also right. Every one of these items depended on having the information about item advertised by the receiver.

But you're not in the internet marketing niche so you think none of this applies to you?

If you're selling information, no matter what niche you're in, think again because it does.

Let me repeat myself. No one wants to buy anything. Everyone is looking for free information.

It's true that none of the above listed techniques may work in your niche however the reasons behind them are still valid.

You've got to offer good information and appeal to your site visitors' "greed factor." Give them a taste of what you're offering and then stay in touch with them so you can share additional information. Once they know and trust you they may then actually take your recommendation and buy something.

You've got to use leveraging to get word about your site out. The internet is a big ocean and your site is a very small minnow. Without the help of other minnows your site is lost in the middle of nowhere. So make your site known by having others help spread the word.

The successful internet marketers in the new millennium know they must stay awake and watch how the internet and it users are changing. They know they can't depend on what's working today to work tomorrow. To solve the problems of getting traffic and making sales the successful internet marketers know they must continue to learn and develop new solutions.

To Your Success,

Thursday, February 08, 2007

5 Changes That Affect Clickbank Affiliates

Are you a Clickbank affiliate?

Clickbank is 1 of the oldest and easiest affiliate programs to get into and their database contains more than 10,000 products for a variety of niches.

Many vendors use Clickbank to manage their affiliate program because of it's low cost, it handles all their affiliate payments and there are thousands of affiliates.

So it would seem that Clickbank offers what both vendors and affiliates need.

However we all know the internet and it's users are always changing and some of these changes affect how things work. So today let's discuss some of the changes that have affected Clickbank affiliates.

5 Changes That Affect Clickbank Affiliates

  1. Since just about anyone can become a Clickbank vendor there are many newcomers now selling products through its affiliate program. Unfortunately many of them don't know how to set up a good sales letter so there are some mediocre or poor converting sales letters. And badly written sales letters mean a lower sales conversion rate - even for a really good product. So read the sales letter before you decide to promote a product.

  2. As I've stated many times, building your list is an important part of having a successful online business and Clickbank vendors know this too. As a result many of the sales pages in some categories are now opt-in pages rather than sales letters. Vendors know that many will not buy the first time they read a sales page but may buy at some future date. Unfortunately, Clickbank does not provide inserting affiliate links into opt-in mailings so when someone signs up and later buys, the affiliate doesn't get the credit. (Some vendors do provide for inserting your affiliate link into opt-in mailings as an additional affiliate resource however you must sign up for their affiliate program in addition to being a Clickbank affiliate.) If a vendor is using an opt-in page as the sales letter and doesn't provide insertion of your affiliate link into the mailings as an additional resource then they - not the affiliate - makes the sales and the affiliates lose the commission.Again, read the sales letter before you decide to promote a product.

  3. Getting Clickbank to send you a check has become harder. It used to be that you had to have a minimum balance (you could select $25 as your minimum) and wait 6 weeks to get your Clickbank commission check however Clickbank has altered both the buyers' payment methods and it's terms for sending checks.

    Clickbank now offers buyers a PayPal option for purchasing products. This is good and has increased sales however ...

    The new terms for sending checks now state that in addition to having the minimum balance and waiting 6 weeks -"ClickBank will withhold the first check to be issued from your account until the payable balance contains sales made with 5 or more different credit card numbers, including at least one Visa card, and one MasterCard in order to be eligible to receive a check. PayPal and e-check purchases do not count toward the minimum." (Taken from

    That means you could easily sell over your minimum balance and wait well over 6 weeks to get paid. For this change I have no answer except to sell more products and keep waiting.

  4. Many affiliates do not use redirection for their affiliate links. Clickbank has tried to help with this problem by changing the format for the affiliate links since many browsers were chopping off the affiliate information at the end of the link with the older format. Still, redirection to your affiliate link is the best practice.

  5. Browsers keep changing and the new IE 7 is causing problems for Clickbank affiliates according to many who post on the Warrior Forum. It seems that IE 7 comes with cookies turned off and Clickbank affiliates depend on cookies being turned on to get their commissions. You can read about the problem here:

    There's not much we can do for this problem except to either instruct IE 7 users to turn on cookies or wait for Clickbank to change their method of handling affiliate links.

Even though I am primarily a reseller I became a Clickbank affiliate when I first started and have made money through their affiliate program. And before these changes I was making money by both using automated services to post ads and by selecting individual products that I liked, had good sales letters and had good Clickbank "Rankings."

Now there are some new problems with being a Clickbank affiliate. As for me, I intend to remain one, at least for awhile, and give Clickbank some time to save itself by making some necessary changes. However you need to be aware of these changes so you can make the same decision for yourself.

To Your Success,

Friday, February 02, 2007

"I Think I'm A Clone Now"

I hope you got a laugh from the video!

The tune is a parody of one of the more popular songs from when I was growing up and describes how I sometimes feel.

For instance -

When I created our free membership area there were a few others around. But now there's a ton of them and more are popping up every day.

Then I started doing "Just Because" sales since everyone was having some kind of a sale. And although I was hoping to do 1 or 2 a month there are now "Seven Bucks", "Crazy Weekend Deals", "Frugal Friday" and many more weekly discount sales.

Hay, I think I've been cloned now!

And although these free memberships and weekly deals are getting greater in number many are still very successful.


Because while the idea behind them may have been cloned they all took a different approach to develop their sites and pages. They all have their own USP - Unique Selling Position.

And many times that's all that's necessary to get new members or sell more products - repackage the offer so it's different.

Whether you're into affiliate marketing, selling digital products or have your own product or service you've got to have your own USP. If your affiliate sales are down maybe you need to create your own pre-sell page to get them interested and it's a great way to get potential customers to sign up for your list. If you're reselling digital products you can do either pre-sell pages or package products to create your own bundle offer - or both.

The important thing to remember is - cloning an idea, marketing model or just about anything is OK if, and only if, you add your own USP to it. When you and 5 thousand others use a carbon copy clone sales page or ad you're setting yourself up to fail.

To Your Success,