Engage Web August 2010 - Engage Web

Dragons invest in antiques valuation website

Posted on August 31, 2010

If you watched last night’s episode of Dragon’s Den on BBC 2 you will have seen the website valuemystuffnow.com. The owner of the website, antiques expert Patrick van der Vorst, was seeking £100,000 investment for his online antiques valuation website. In his pitch he mentioned how visitors to his website would upload photographs of their antiques in order to receive a valuation within 48 hours via email.

It sounded like a good idea, but as Duncan Bannatyne and Peter Jones pointed out, with an average order value of around £4.50, a low conversion rate and a reliance on Google Adwords for traffic he was never actually going to make a profit. This was compounded by the fact that every time Patrick spoke of what he needed the investment for he stated ‘Google Adwords’ in order to increase his traffic levels to circa 100,000 uniques per month.

Every time he mentioned this, I shouted at the TV ‘NO!”. This is not the way to increase your traffic levels and, as Peter and Duncan had already identified, you wouldn’t make a profit doing that. Yet still Deborah Meaden kept repeating that they needed to increase their advertising on ‘Pay Per Clicks’ (as she called it).

Value My Stuff Now

Value My Stuff Now

Surprisingly, Deborah and Theo Paphitis (more…)

Posted by Carl Hopkinson

What exactly is a blog?

Posted on August 30, 2010

The word ‘blog’ is often bandied about now, but not everyone knows what one is yet. Weblog is the correct term, but common usage has shortened it to ‘blog.’ Quite simply, it is a web-based, interactive journal and anyone can have one, including companies nowadays. It can give people the (more…)

Posted by Matt Jones

Should you look for local SEO companies in Cheshire?

Posted on August 30, 2010

The WorldOne of the questions that many people have when they’re looking for an SEO company is whether it’s best to go local, or does it in fact not matter where your SEO company is from.

This is actually a difficult question to answer and, to some degree, depends on what you expect from your SEO company. For example, if you expect to have a ‘hands on’ approach to your SEO and you want to be able to meet with your SEO company regularly, popping in to see them and have them visit you, then you’re probably better off with a local company. Also, if you want your SEO to be (more…)

Posted by Matt Jones

SEO Titles: the decision of Solomon

Posted on August 29, 2010

king-solomon-babyWhen faced with a tricky title, like everyone in SEO will be at some point, I am often torn between wanting to be catchy and wanting to stick by the rules of search engine optimisation. On the one hand, a catchy title is likely to catch the eye of the Internet user who performed the search in the first place. On the other, without the correct keywords in the correct place (such as the title) the search engines are less likely to feature my title somewhere that the Internet user will actually see it when they perform the aforementioned search.

But then again, if I don’t have something catchy, the Internet user will click on someone else’s title… Ugh. Which is more important?

At such times, the decision of King Solomon comes to mind. The wise king of old was confronted by two women, both claiming to be the mother of a child. Faced with a very difficult choice, Solomon decided to (more…)

Posted by Cheryl Mathews

The beehive principle in online business

Posted on August 28, 2010

Worker bees in a hive each have a specialised job essential to the survival of the hive. The bees go out to gather pollen to make honey; they return and ‘tell’ their fellows, in a complicated dance, where to find the flowers. Now all the bees know where the best source of pollen is. When that source is (more…)

Posted by Cheryl Mathews

Facebook’s trapped cat claptrap

Posted on August 28, 2010

Moggy bothering Royal Bank of Scotland employee Mary Bale hit the headlines this week.

If you’re unaware of who she is, she’s the mumsy 45-year-old who was caught on CCTV disposing of a neighbour’s cat in a wheelie bin.

In the hilarious yet disturbing footage, she is seen petting fuzzy bundle of fur Lola, lulling her into a false sense of security, before grasping her by the scruff of the neck and popping her into the bin like a balled up chip wrapper.

The cat was rescued 15 hours later by her owners, and they posted the video on Facebook in a bid to find out who had mistreated their precious pet. Bale was soon identified and, after defending her actions by proclaiming “it was only a cat”, saw the error of her ways and apologised profusely.

We’ll never really know her motives. Her elderly father is known to be ill in hospital, so she may have acted on an impulse to have some element of control in her life. She may have mistaken the furbag for Sesame Street’s Oscar the Grouch, and thought she was putting him back in a bin where he belonged, or she may simply not like cats. What was interesting was the reaction to the footage; pretty soon, a Facebook group called ‘Death to Mary Bale’ had been created and was attracting lots of followers. Calling for the summary execution of Mrs Bale, its members suggested that she be (more…)

Posted by Mark Glenning

Increasing your links with blog comments

Posted on August 27, 2010

Hitler does not allow blog commentsLinks are widely recognised as one of the most important factors to your website’s improved search engine rankings. The more links you have (assuming they’re from good quality, relevant websites – and we can’t stress that enough) the more Google will look upon your website in the same manner as a father would look upon his child as he takes his first steps.

Sickly golden syrup analogy aside, the point still stands. If your website has loads of good quality links from similar websites, your website will perform better. With that in mind, one of the best ways to increase the number of links to your website is by commenting on the blog posts of other websites within your industry, adding a link to your own site within the URL field.

Now, this raises one or two important points – points that must first be made clear before you rush off and start spamming the bejesus out of your competitors.

Firstly, while the anchor text used within a link is important in SEO (the text used for the link itself), and the name you add when you post a comment becomes the actual link text, your name should (more…)

Posted by Carl Hopkinson

Why your company needs professional web copy

Posted on August 26, 2010

Nothing detracts from a business presentation more than shoddy publicity, appearance and products. Work training videos on presentation and marketing techniques often emphasise this point. It is very easy to spot when you are the onlooker, but not so easy when you are the unwitting producer.

Despite the saying (more…)

Posted by Jenny C
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