LOOKs Can Be Deceiving

Written by Kalena Jordan

Continued from page 1

- Wording used in Looksmart's announcement emails seems to deliberately mislead customers into believing their directory listings are going to disappear if they do nothing. The fact is thatrepparttar listings may or may not be removed - depending on how "essential"repparttar 128169 site is deemed to be by Looksmart Editors.

- Sites previously ranking well via their existing listings will, in all likelihood, lose these rankings whether they activate their PPC account or not, because preference will now be given to those who buy "relevancy keywords" as part of their listing.

- By their own admission, Looksmart is unlikely to delist big brand sites, even if they refuse to pay forrepparttar 128170 new scheme, because they are "critical to relevance". But wasn't this new scheme meant to benefit SMALL business?

- Looksmart claimrepparttar 128171 new program creates a lower cost of entry for small business whereasrepparttar 128172 start up costs actually come in at $50 more thanrepparttar 128173 old Basic Submit model used by those with smaller budgets, not to mentionrepparttar 128174 additional click costs.

- Apparently, LookSmart have been trying to force companies whose sites were included inrepparttar 128175 directory for free to convert to their paid programs. Looksmart's attitude to these sites is "having a free ride doesn't helprepparttar 128176 business model" and if they don't convert, they are likely to be removed.

- Underrepparttar 128177 old submission programs, a single web site could submit up to five different URLs. The new program institutes a one URL per site limit, dramatically reducingrepparttar 128178 ability to target and direct traffic torepparttar 128179 most relevant areas of your site.

- Many people who have activated their accounts and already received notification that their "free" clicks are used up are checking their logs and finding discrepancies betweenrepparttar 128180 number of clicks Looksmart say they have provided andrepparttar 128181 number of actual clicks to their site.

- Looksmart hadrepparttar 128182 audacity to call this new model an "upgrade" for existing clients, when in fact it reducesrepparttar 128183 value of their listing incredibly.

- According to industry leader Danny Sullivan, inrepparttar 128184 past few days, LookSmart has been automatically migrating accounts torepparttar 128185 new system regardless of whether customers give their permission by manually "activating".

Being an SEO, I have multiple Looksmart accounts for my own sites and those of my clients. I've already received six "Listing Traffic Interruption" emails. But I won't be giving them another cent. Why? Because Looksmart.com no longer offers me or my clients value for money, for one thing. But more importantly,repparttar 128186 deceptive nature of their announcement and their decision to force existing customers to roll-over intorepparttar 128187 new system instead of "grandfathering" their listings demonstrates to me a complete lack of understanding of their own market. To put profits before customers might bring some short-term shareholder joy, but it will also guarantee a growing exodus of disappointed clients and users as they find more cost-effective and relevant search alternatives. In my book that's search engine suicide. Search engines and directories have done some pretty shifty things overrepparttar 128188 years, but never before have I seen such arrogance or disdain for customers as Looksmart have shown inrepparttar 128189 past two weeks. A post atrepparttar 128190 Web Master World search engine forums sums it up nicely: "L$ is likerepparttar 128191 mob and they just busted my kneecaps..." In fact this whole episode reeks of desperation, profiteering and deception on such a grand scale, you have to wonder if they are in serious financial muck. Whatever their motivations, it looks like they've already pressedrepparttar 128192 self-destruct button.

------------------------- Disclaimer - The views expressed in this article arerepparttar 128193 personal opinion ofrepparttar 128194 author and do not necessarily reflectrepparttar 128195 views of Web Rank as a whole. In providing this information, we make every effort to ensure it is correct and up to date. However, because ofrepparttar 128196 widespread nature of our information sources, no guarantee is given forrepparttar 128197 accuracy of content throughout this article. Web Rank disclaim all liability inrepparttar 128198 event of inaccuracies found.

Article by Kalena Jordan, CEO of Web Rank. Kalena was one of the first search engine optimization experts in Australia & New Zealand and is well known and respected in her field. For more of her articles on search engine ranking and online marketing, please visit http://www.high-search-engine-ranking.com

PPC Bid Management Software Showdown

Written by Kalena Jordan

Continued from page 1

5. Auto Pilot www.managebid.com

Probablyrepparttar pick ofrepparttar 128168 Internet based programs, Manage Bidís Auto Pilot software wasrepparttar 128169 only one reviewed that provided unlimited keywords. The hitch is that each keyword will cost you 0.25 USD a month to monitor, with a minimum spend of $25 per domain, per month. Bid updates are done every 24 hours andrepparttar 128170 program provides support for eight PPC engines (some obscure). There is also an Economy Mode forrepparttar 128171 penny pinchers, at 0.10 USD per keyword, with a minimum spend of $10 per domain, per month. But economizers must update their bids manually - seerepparttar 128172 Features Chart for details. Score 7/10

6. PPC Professional www.ppcmanagement.com

Now this one has real potential. You haverepparttar 128173 choice of purchasing a lifetime version or a monthly subscription and you also haverepparttar 128174 flexibility of determining how often your bids are checked and updated. Keywords supported range from 50 to 5,000+ with costs staggered from $89 or $12 per month for 50 keywords to $999 or $100 per month for 5000+ keywords (seerepparttar 128175 Features Chart for detailed pricing). With a "Smart Bid" feature to ensure your bids are cost-effective andrepparttar 128176 ability to import keywords straight from Overture, this new product has many featuresrepparttar 128177 bigger names donít. You can print reports or email them directly to customers andrepparttar 128178 developers claim to keep your login and account info secure. It also supports unlimited Overture accounts for those of you with multiple clients. Currentlyrepparttar 128179 software only supports Overture.com, but a new release planned shortly will support other engines and include new features. The 10 day, 10 keyword trial version has a few bugs to be ironed out andrepparttar 128180 interface isnít as intuitive as others, but definitely one to watch. Score 7/10

7. Position Guardian www.positionguardian.com

Notrepparttar 128181 most feature-packed product, Position Guardian (Premium) is an Internet based bid monitoring and gap analysis tool that automatesrepparttar 128182 process of checking your bids on Overture and sends you daily notification of bid gaps. Unlikerepparttar 128183 other products reviewed, Position Guardian does not include automated bid updating, you have to manually changerepparttar 128184 bids yourself by logging in to your Overture account. Sure itís cheaper than some, with prices ranging from $7.95 to $57.95 per month depending on keyword numbers, but it still seems like a lot to pay for less than halfrepparttar 128185 work (seerepparttar 128186 Features Chart for detailed pricing). In their defense, they do provide a free online version that allows you to manually check for bid gaps one keyword at a time - handy if youíre worried about that all important keyword. Score 4/10

8. BidRight www.bidright.net

We have a winner! BidRight was very hard to fault. A downloadable desktop program, no monthly fees, generous keyword limits and a very competitive price for their new release Pro edition (USD $199 for 500 keywords). Seerepparttar 128187 Features Chart for more pricing options. Version 2 supports FindWhat, Kanoodle and eSpotting in conjunction with Overture US & UK and allowsrepparttar 128188 user to determinerepparttar 128189 bid update frequency from every 60 seconds to every 24 hours. Their interface followsrepparttar 128190 WYSISYG principle and it wasrepparttar 128191 easiest of allrepparttar 128192 software to install and start using.

Particularly impressive isrepparttar 128193 "Gap Surfing" tool that findsrepparttar 128194 most cost-effective position from a range of ranks that you predetermine. So if you wanted to remain inrepparttar 128195 top 5 positions, you choose position 1 as your target rank and enable gap surfing with a range of 4. BidRight will findrepparttar 128196 largest price gap inrepparttar 128197 top 5 and slot your bid in there automatically whenever it is scheduled to update, preventing you from overbidding and saving you lots of money inrepparttar 128198 process. Other new features includerepparttar 128199 ability to export reports in CSV format, a drop back rank feature when maximum bid has been reached. Combine all this withrepparttar 128200 ability to customizerepparttar 128201 update frequency for your most important keywords and you have a very powerful tool that becomes a must for managing any PPC campaign. You can download a fully functioning 15 day demo, withrepparttar 128202 only disadvantage a five keyword limit. Score 9/10

Well BidRight wasrepparttar 128203 ultimate winner of our Showdown and I was so impressed withrepparttar 128204 product that I immediately signed up to become an affiliate! If you would like to buy BidRight, you may like to use our affiliate link: http://store.yahoo.com/cgi-bin/clink?bidright+NARxJp+index.html. Be sure to mention Coupon Code WR 007 to obtain a 5% discount (we do get a commission if you use our link, so if that bothers you, feel free to userepparttar 128205 general link above). Remember you can viewrepparttar 128206 Features Chart for allrepparttar 128207 software reviewed fromrepparttar 128208 longer version of this article located at our site: http://www.high-search-engine-ranking.com/PPC_Bid_Management_Software_Showdown.htm.

If you are inrepparttar 128209 market for any kind of Bid Management Software, you may want to keep an eye on current talk aboutrepparttar 128210 implications of such software on server load at Overture. Apparently Overture are considering restricting access to their servers from persons using bid management software becauserepparttar 128211 server load is becoming too great. They may block access from certain IP addresses that abuserepparttar 128212 system or they may restrict access by software. To reducerepparttar 128213 impact on search engine servers, you should use your bid management software responsibly, restricting bid checking to every few hours or daily rather than every few minutes.

Article by Kalena Jordan, CEO of Web Rank. Kalena was one of the first search engine optimization experts in Australia & New Zealand and is well known and respected in her field. For more of her articles on search engine ranking and online marketing, please visit http://www.high-search-engine-ranking.com

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