How The Internet Effects Your Business

Rick Touchstone
By Rick Touchstone / October 17, 2019
What happens when you search on the Internet? How do you get to what you want? Most likely, you’ll skip all the banner ads, and enter your own search term. You’ll skip the “sponsored search engine results.” Maybe at this point, you can’t even see them. You probably don’t even see the shaded results on the right or any of the advertising or web infomercial type results. It’s a lot like television: if you don’t have a video recorder, you just tune out the commercials mentally.
Clearly, if you’re marketing your goods or services on the Internet, those sorts of sponsored results and banner ads give you a really dismal return on investment. Sure, they’ll generate some clicks, which will, in turn, generate some sales, but they’re only worthwhile for big, relatively rich companies.

Ideally, you want to optimize your site so that it naturally shows up high on the list. The playing field is much more level than in any other form of marketing. Small companies can own their much larger competitors.
In case it’s still not quite clear what ‘natural’ or ‘organic’ search means, its’ just the ‘editorial’ rather than ‘sponsored’ search results for whatever search engine you use. If you can fine-tune your site to land high in the list of organic search results, your marketing on the Internet will have the desired effects on your business. Unlike the paid advertisements, you can’t buy your way in. The only way to punch your ticket for this dance is natural search engine optimization.
The playing field is relatively level, but large companies do have some advantages when it comes to natural search engine optimization. They tend to have large quantities of inbound links. This affects search engine results substantially. Vendors, affiliates and partners often link freely and unbidden to the corporation’s site.
Smaller companies, on the other hand, have some advantages too. Smaller companies tend to be more willing to pursue optimizing their site to generate results organically. Smaller companies also have little or no red tape to sift through in order to get a decision made on optimizing their sites. Smaller companies tend to be more willing to outsource, perhaps because they tend to not have significant resources internally. Natural search engine optimization is both a technical and non-technical problem. Simple steps like figuring out what keywords people will search for are important, as well as understanding the technical aspects of how a search engine indexes pages.
Huge corporations, tend to view natural search engine optimization as a very small piece of an enormous puzzle. Not only that, they’ve been doing without it for years. Quite possibly, they’ve even been doing without the Internet for years. The necessary steps to successfully marketing on the internet in order to get the desired effects on your business are often too much to get through committee after committee and miles of red tape.
Smaller, leaner competitors can thus swoop in and take full advantage of organic search engine optimization and get better search engine results.
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Why You Need an Ad Management Plugin

Rick Touchstone
By Rick Touchstone / September 1, 2019

Advertising is one of the easiest and most popular ways to make money from your WordPress website.
But, if you’ve ever tried to display ads manually on your WordPress site, you know what a hassle it can be.
Using an ad management plugin can help you to stay organized and have more control over how your ads are displayed — as well as give you crucial statistics on how your ads are performing.
AdSanity works by allowing you to create ads as custom post types, and displays them on your site using a widget or short code.
Ads can be displayed by themselves (either by specific ad or randomly chosen), or in groups. The ads default to your theme’s styles, so, if your theme is responsive, your ads will be too.

About AdSanity

AdSanity is a powerful ad management plugin for publishing self-hosted banner ads as well as network ads in WordPress. It’s one of the most popular WordPress plugins for managing ads and powers millions of ads online.
The plugin is so simple and easy to use that anyone, including complete beginners, can create professional ads using it. It provides a clean and beginner-friendly interface for creating and managing the ads. The core plugin is lightweight and fast with a minimal set of features; however, it offers a number of addons to allow you to extend the plugin’s functionalities.
The AdSanity plugin was created by, and is maintained by, Pixel Jar, a website development company. The company focuses on making the WordPress platform easy for users.

AdSanity Review: Features and Addons

AdSanity is a feature-rich plugin with tons of great features and addons. While the plugin’s standard features are great for creating and managing professional ads in WordPress, you can use the addons to add some extra capabilities.
There’re two varieties of AdSanity addons: Basic and Pro. The basic addons are included in all plans, while the pro addons are included only with the Developer license. However, you can purchase the addons individually and use them on your site, should you need them.
Some of the most intriguing AdSanity addons are:
Conditional Ad Appearance: It adds a new metabox on the Create Ad screen page to allow you control the appearance of your ads.
User Role Ad Visibility: It allows you (site owner) to hide ads based on the role of the visitors on your site.
Google Analytics Tracking: It helps you to track ads from both self-hosted sources as well as from ad networks. If you’re using MonsterInsights on your site, you don’t need to purchase this addon because MonsterInsights allows you to track your ads with ease.
Ad Block Detection: This addon checks for Ad Block software in your users’ browsers and shows them a message encouraging them to disable it.
Video Ads: It allows you to add video ads to your WordPress site easily.
Moreover, the plugin features multiple publishing options so you can create infinite or date-based ads with a beginning date and ending date. To display your ads on your site, you can add them in widgetized areas, pages, posts with shortcodes, or template tags.
The most interesting feature for developers is that it has included actions and filters which developers can utilize to customize and add power to the AdSanity plugin. And, their support is also incredible.

How to Set Up Your First Ad

To get started, you need to download the AdSanity plugin from its website and then upload it to your site to install it. After installing and activating the plugin, you can navigate to AdSanity » Manage Ads to get started.
Click the Create Ad button at the top of the screen.

Here you’ll enter the details of your ad and upload the banner image.
After entering a name for your ad, select the size.

Then upload your banner image.
Under Ad Details, be sure to paste the URL you want to direct your visitors to when they click the ad. If you prefer, you can check off the box to open the link in a new window.
On the right side of the page, you can choose to add your new ad to an ad group. Groups are useful when choosing which ads you’d like to display together (more on that below).

In the Publish box on the right, you can click the Edit link next to Publish forever to change the duration of the ad display.

When you’re finished selecting your options, click the Publish button.
To display your new ad, navigate to Appearance » Widgets.
You’ll see that there are a few new widgets available to use.

The widgets are:
AdSanity – Single Ad: Display one specific ad of your choice.
AdSanity – Ad Group: Select an ad group to show all the ads at once.
AdSanity – Random Ad: Displays a random ad every time the page is loaded.
To display the ad you just created, use the AdSanity – Single Ad widget and select the ad name you entered. Then click Save.

Your ad will now be displayed in your widget area!
Be sure to test it to make sure it’s working correctly.
(Note: If clicking your ads brings you to a 404 page, go to Settings » Permalinks and click the Save button without making any changes. This will reset the permalink structure on your site to include the AdSanity custom post type, without affecting the rest of your site.)
You can also display ads on your site using shortcodes, which can be found in the official documentation.
Use this shortcode to display a single specific ad:
[adsanity id=”put-the-ad-id-here” align=”alignnone”] And this shortcode will display an ad group:
[adsanity_group num_ads=2 num_columns=3 group_ids=1,2 /] You can adjust the attributes to change the display:
num_ads: The number of ads that will be displayed together
num_columns: The number of columns
Group_ids: The ID of the ad group(s) you want to display.
To find your ad group IDs, navigate to AdSanity » Ad Groups and the ID number will be listed next to the group name.

Once your ads are displayed, you can navigate to AdSanity » Stats to see data on your ad views, clicks, and CTR.
Should You Purchase AdSanity for Ad Management in WordPress?
Now that we’ve reviewed AdSanity’s features and functionalities in detail, it’s time to decide if it’s worth purchasing. If you have plans to turn your site into an advertising machine with professional ads, this plugin is perfect.
Here’re just a few reasons why you should purchase AdSanity for WordPress ad management:
1) Beginner-Friendly Plugin That Doesn’t Compromise on Features
Since the AdSanity ad management tool works just like the Post Editor in WordPress, any user, regardless of their skill set, who’s accustomed to WordPress’ interface will find it easy to work with. Plus, it comes with all the essential features you need to succeed.
You can easily create self-hosted ads of any dimensions and display them on different parts of your site. If you want to add network ads, you can simply add the ad snippet to your ad creation page. You can also create HTML5 ads.
2) Lightweight and Extensible
AdSanity comes with a simple and clean interface that isn’t bloated with unwanted features — the core plugin is shipped with only the most important features.
If you need more than the standard features provide, you can expand AdSanity’s features by installing the basic and pro addons. There’re 4 basic and 6 pro addons for the AdSanity plugin. The basic addons are available for free with all of their pricing plans, whereas pro addons are included in only the Developer plan. But, you can buy the pro addons individually and use in your site, with any plan, if needed.
3) Best Suited for Any Budget
The best thing about the AdSanity plugin is that it’s best suited for websites of all sizes and budgets. The pricing is fairly reasonable.
Whether you’re a blogger, publisher, developer, or a large-scale agency, you can find a plan for you.
Let’s check out its pricing plans in the next section.
Pricing and Support for the AdSanity Plugin
AdSanity is a premium plugin with 3 types of pricing plans: Blogger, Publisher, and Developer. You can choose 1 of the available plans and start creating and managing banner and network ads immediately.

The most basic plan is Blogger, and costs $49 per year. The plan comes with the AdSanity core plugin and basic addons and can be used in 1 public domain and 1 local domain.
The Publisher plan is the middle-range plan and also the most popular plan. The license costs $89 per year and can be used for 3 public and 3 local domains.
The Developer plan is the highest-priced plan for AdSanity. It costs $149 per year and comes bundled with all the features and addons the plugin has to offer. And, it provides unlimited licensing.
Documentation for the AdSanity plugin is sparse, with just a few short articles available online for basic troubleshooting and features. If you’re having trouble getting the plugin set up, you can submit a support ticket through the support site.
Our Verdict on AdSanity as the Best WordPress Ad Management Plugin
AdSanity makes it easy to manage your ads and see basic statistics all from within your WordPress dashboard.
If you’re looking for more advanced features, like the ability to sell ad space directly, or get more-detailed analytics, then this plugin will be too basic for you.
While the documentation is lacking, the plugin is easy to use and the developers are responsive to support requests.
We give AdSanity 4 out of 5 stars. Here is the breakdown of our review scores:
The post AdSanity Review 2018: Is It the Best Ad Management Plugin? appeared first on IsItWP – WordPress Technology Lookup Tool.

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The Top of the Funnel

Discovery: The Top of the Funnel

Goals: Indirect customer acquisition; brand awareness

Tactic: Educational content, viral content

In this first stage of content marketing, you're trying to create knowledge of your brand among prospective customers (and even the market most importantly). In some cases, when the utilization case for your product isn't immediately obvious, you're also trying to educate the market that there's a good problem to be solved.
You're also wanting to use content marketing to generate interest during this stage. Because it's not enough for people to just hear your name, they also have to be curious enough about your brand to keep in mind that name and begin integrating it into their list of trusted brands (even if they only trust your articles at this stage).
The very best of the funnel is often where we see inbound marketing at its finest. Our goals might include nudging a few potential customers toward transformation, however the way we go about that is rarely by talking about ourselves. Instead, it's about figuring out what the audience wants and must learn about and teaching them those things. If you're doing that well, you're associating feelings of gratitude and respect with your brand-not to say authority. Even while, you're increasing the competence of your visitors to a spot where the products you have to offer are more beneficial to them. Double earn.

Types of content that work very well during the breakthrough phase include:

Blog posts
Webinars
Big content (games, tools, long-form content, parallax scrollers)
Comprehensive guides
Videos
Email newsletters

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Phase Two – Consideration

Rick Touchstone
By Rick Touchstone / December 27, 2018

Consideration: The Middle of the Funnel

Goal: Direct customer acquisition

Answers to use-case challenges

In the consideration phase, a consumer starts to associate you with the perfect solution is you offer. This is the time when you want to supply them with content that helps them evaluate you and your products. At this time, we're speaking right to individuals we think our business can help and ensuring they understand how we can help them.

Remember that they may not yet trust you, so don't put on your sales head wear at this time. Instead, consideration content is a great opportunity to make sure it's easy for your visitor to browse all the information that may help them differentiate you from your competitors.

At this time people will be looking for:

  • Case studies
  • How-to content that showcases your products
  • Demo videos
  • Product descriptions and data sheets

Probably one of the most effective ways to do this is by illustrating use situations that solve our customers' problems. At FunnelVictory, we've a series of short video lessons we call FunnelVictory Academy, where we show people how they may use a FunnelVictory free membership to tackle specific duties like enhancing their search engine rankings and competitive analysis.

Real-world example: Famous Amos

There are all types of other types of this. When Kellogg made its famous cookie recipe publicly available, they ensured to identify the all-important handbag of Toll House delicious chocolate chips. The formula wasn't salesy, but it did encourage those who used it to buy that company's product (even only if to get the recipe imprinted on the bag).

Remember, though, that middle-of-the-funnel content usually doesn't concentrate directly on what you're offering. It uses what you're offering to another end, whether that end be higher search engine rankings or a batch of delicious cookies.

Phase One: Discovery phase of content marketing

Rick Touchstone
By Rick Touchstone / November 24, 2018

Phase I of content marketing

Within this discovery phase of content marketing, you're trying to generate awareness of your brand among potential customers (and even the market at large). In some cases, when the use case for your product isn't immediately obvious, you're also trying to educate the market that there's even a problem to be solved.

You're also seeking to use content marketing to generate interest during this phase. Because it's not enough for people to just hear your name, they also need to be curious enough about your brand to remember that name and start integrating it into their list of trusted brands (even if they only trust your content at this stage).

Top of the funnel

The top of the funnel is often where we see inbound marketing at its finest. Our goals might include nudging a few potential customers toward conversion, but the way we go about that is hardly ever by talking about ourselves. Instead, it's about figuring out what the audience wants and needs to learn about and teaching them those things.

If you're doing that well, you're associating feelings of gratitude and respect with your brand-not to mention authority in the discovery phase of content marketing. All the while, you're raising the competence of your readers to a point where the products or services you have to offer are more useful to them. Double win.

Types of content that work well during the finding phase include:

  • Blog posts
  • Webinars
  • Big content (games, tools, long-form content, parallax scrollers)
  • Comprehensive guides
  • Videos
  • Email newsletters

Real-world example: ProFanGear.com

There's a fun example of this type of content at a pro football gear site. They sell lover gear we all know. Site visitors leave feeling like they've become subject matter experts, and from that point ahead, they think of their team brand as one that not only knows exactly what is going on but quite generous with that information and is just as concerned with developing a gratitude for team brand loyalty, we're all striving for.

To take the same concept and bring it a bit closer to home, most of what we publish on the funnel triumph Blog is an example of the same kind of top-of-funnel marketing. We don't publish blog posts to convince people they should buy our products. We distribute them because we want people to level-up their skills and be better marketers. Our hope is that by participating in our community and reading our blog posts, if you ever find yourself in need of tools for your digital marketing attempts in the discovery  phase of content marketing, that we'll be top-of-mind as a reliable choice.

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