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The Number One Secret to Internet Marketing Success

Jinger Jarrett
Aug 17, 2007
The number one rule in internet marketing is: Target your market.

This is good advice. If you don't know who your target market is, you will have a lot of trouble selling your products or services.

However, before you can determine who your target market is, you need to know who your competition is.

My Mom always told me, "Actions speak louder than words". What she was saying is that you can listen to what other people are saying, but if you really want to know what they are really thinking, you need to watch what they are doing.

A lot has been said about internet marketing gurus, and how they will never tell you their real secrets to internet marketing. If they did, you could easily become their competition. You don't have to reinvent the wheel, just market better, and offer more value. This is how you put your competition out of business.

I believe this is true. I also know that many of the top named internet marketing "gurus" took offline marketing techniques, adapted them to the internet, and used these techniques to catapult them to success. They also continue to use the same techniques offline.

Understanding what your competition is really doing is your first, and most important step, to success.

So, how do you get started?

First, you need to do a search in the search engines. I use Alexa for this because Alexa delivers a lot more information about websites than standard search engines. To me, Alexa is a marketer's paradise because of all the information it offers.

Start by selecting the market your site fits into. You can be as general or as specific as you want to be. However, the more specific you are, the more likely you are to nail down your market.

For example, if you sell fishing equipment, put the search term in quotes and then do a search for "fishing equipment". This will help you really narrow down the sites that will be your competion.

Next, you really want to study the sites you are competing against. This is especially true if you sell anything related to internet marketing. You really want to find out if the person really "practices what he preaches".

(I personally am always skeptical of buying from marketers that don't provide examples of their results with products they are promoting. This is especially important with each new trend we see in internet marketing.

If you can't find examples in action by marketers who are touting certain products, don't buy. This is especially true with blogging scripts and tools, Adsense (you want to see one of their sites), or any other marketing techniques.)

Now, you're probably wondering what you're looking for when you visit your competition's site.

Here are a few:

1. What is the site's Alexa ranking?
One of the factors Alexa uses to rank sites is the amount of traffic they get. As long as the traffic is targeted, lots of traffic should lead to lots of sales although this isn't always the case.

The further you niche, the lower the raniking may be. This doesn't necessarily mean the site doesn't get a lot of traffic or that its not making any money. This is only one factor you need to consider.

2. How many sites did you find for the search term?
Depending on the search engine, you'll find different search engines offer different results. In the case of our term fishing equipment (in quotes), Alexa returned 718,000 results. The number one site returned had no traffic data, so you'll definitely want to study sites like these. If the site achieves a number ranking for the term, but it has no traffic data, definitely studying it will give you insight into how the site is being marketed.

You can do a search by URL and get more detailed traffic rankings. You can also find out what sites link back to the site. This will tell you if you the site is using an affiliate program to increase sales, as well as any partners the site may have.

Once you get to the site, there are several factors you may want to consider:

1. What keywords does the site use?
You can find out by viewing the source of the site. This isn't about copying or stealing. You are doing this for informational purposes only.

2. What type of site did you find?
Is it a content site, a sales letter, a sales site? This is an important question because it will help you in creating and formatting your own site.

Although sales letter sites are great for making sales, they don't do well in the search engines. Also, the idea of giving people only one choice isn't the only way to make money either. Internet searchers are looking for content too, and they have a minimum of two choices on your site. Depending on the type of site, they can accept your offer or click away.

If you're offering what the potential customer is looking for, you have a better chance of making the sale, and as long as your potential customers doesn't have to dig too deep to find what they're looking for, you won't have too much trouble making the sale.

3. Does the site offer a list?
The site owner is leaving money on the table without one. You need a list.

If the site does have a list, join it. See what type of messages the site owner sends out, as well as frequency. Some site owners will even tell you how many subscribers they have on their lists.

While you're at it, put yourself in your customers' shoes. Try to look at the site from your customers' viewpoint.

There's a lot more you can learn from studying your competitions' sites. Studying a few internet marketing gurus' sites will definitely help you too. It won't take you long to discover how they market their sites, and what you learn can easily help you increase your bottom line.
About the Author
Jinger Jarrett wants to give you free publicity for your business. You can post your marketing related articles and press releases, get free classified advertising, and read marketing related articles and news when you visit her site at http://www.killermarketingarsenal.com
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