Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Site Architecture - Link Structure

Structuring a Site's Internal Link Structure. Consider:

Internal Links

"The homepage is generally considered the most important page of a site - it is the top level document and usually attracts the most inbound links. From here, search engine robots can normally reach pages that are within three clicks of the homepage. Therefore, your most important pages should be one click away, the next important two clicks away and so forth. " - quoted from entireweb & Craig Broadbent - see below

Internal Links - "The next thing to consider is how to link the pages together. Search engine robots can only follow generic HTML href links, meaning Flash links, JavaScript links, dropdown menus and submit buttons will all be inaccessible to robots. Links with query strings that have two or more parameters are also typically ignored, so be aware of this if you run a dynamically generated website. " quoted again from Entireweb & Broadbent

SiteMap - How important?

The site map is the "nexus" by which all of which your pages get into the search engine. Or at least, by which all pages are guaranteed to be only two steps from the front page. Google now has some clever sitemap approach which provides feedback to them about your site architecture and its changes. It supposedly helps improve your rank....

Original article sent by entireweb - written by : Craig Broadbent is Search Engine Optimisation Executive for UK-based internet marketing company, WebEvents Ltd. Clients of WebEvents benefit from a range of services designed to maximise ROI from internet marketing activities. To find out more, visit

Content Distribution

I write alot and would like these articles to be republished broadly.

My best list of sites that take articles and press releases.
And another point, google tracks where articles appear first so before you put them out for syndication, publish them at home

I did two releases thru a consulting company who put them on PR newsnow. They seemed to get some distribution. They can be found at:
Children Going BackToSchool Increasingly Login to Educational ...
Rapidly Growing Homeschool Trend Stimulated by New Internet Tools

Heres a pretty good article on the topic of content distribution. It mentions websites that distribute content:,, and

I have a number of articles ready for distribution such as:
Internet Safety
Learning to read
Summer Skills Sharpener
Learning Math Skills

And there are others that are near-ready such as:
HomeSchool Curriculum - Many Choices (bottom half of the page)
Learn to Read
Reading Skills
PreReading Skills
Reading Comprehension
Building Vocabulary
Reading Fluency

Anybody out there with some real expertise in turning my content into gold via content distribution with embedded links / keyphrases?

Google PPC

Until recently (sept), 100% of my sales were generated by google ppc. Since then, natural search and advertising is generating between a third of my traffic and new members.

However, I spent the previous year glued to my google ppc account. Because my online education curricula is very low cost, I needed to manage my cost per customer acquisition very tightly. But, despite google being my No 1 business partner, they were not that helpful in teaching me how to use and optimize my use of their tools.

I did a monthly analysis by keyword of my spend per new customer (ie avg cost per click x number of clicks = total cost. Total cost / new customers = cost per customer.) For keyphrases that did well, I increased my bid. For those that did poorly, I decreased my spend.

New features seemed to show up faster than I learned them. The ability to put the keyphrase automatically into the title was a cool one that I stumbled across after unthinkable amounts of time on a manual approach to that function.

There are not that many good articles on this topic. Heres one.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Blog promotion with Ping-o-matic

I have found the neat pingomatic tool. Here are some questions?

- Does anybody know if blogger has a built-in pingomatic? They do have a setting which means that a blog and its updates gets listed in a directory? How does that compare to putting an update in the ping-o-matic?

- Are there other tools that provide a comprehensive (better or different) listing service than Ping-o-matic?

- Has anybody ever named any tool as well as the ping-o-matic? It appeals to the geeks who have pinging at the command line for years as well as the newbies who like the cool-oh name.

- What happens if you put in a non-blog into the ping-o-matic? Does that effectively build links and visibility? Or does ping-o-matic include a screen-o-matic function so that it only works on blogs and other web journaly things?

For instance - can I put in a newly updated page on my website - such as HomeSchool Curriculum or Special Needs Learning and use it as a link-builder?

Wow - thanks for the email... theres one called blogflux -
Web Blog Pinging Service

Monday, December 26, 2005

Parked Domains - How best to use them?

I have these domains currently parked which means that they are pointing towards domains that have some content.

Can anyone tell me what good they do from a traffic generation or SEO point of view?

Can anyone tell me the best way to use relevent domain names? I see some companies with entire structures of links and ads built around unused domains. Are these structures profitable? Are they accessible to small scale companies like myself?

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Google Page Rank Dance

Sunday, my home page rank was a 6.

Monday day - I was a 5. sigh.

Then Monday evening, a 6 again!!!!

Today, I'm a 5. sigh sigh.

Is this normal?

Interactive Learning - Homeschool Curriculum

Monday, December 12, 2005

Domains - Parked & Useful?

Parking domains.

I have more recently pursued this topic:
Unused Domain - How best to use them Dec 2005
Monetizing Domains - 9/06
Lisa's discussion at Webhosting Talk on using idle domains

I havesome idle domains that I have just registered and parked (ie redirected to other domains where I've put something up). Do they help with page rank and traffic?

I notice that before I redirected them, someone (the registrar?) had installed some algorithmic software that put up alot of pages and ads built around the keyphrases of the domain name. Anybody know where these packages come from? I suspect for the right names and domains, there might be some reasonable income from these set-ups...

Update Note - 8/06 - At the local

The Early Education Center dot com


Link Weight

My homepage is now a Google PR 6. Many of my pages are PR 5s (including pages like "Contact us" and "privacy statment" but thats another question). Some are 4s. Some are unranked.

Question: Whats the relative benefit for me to getting more links from 0's? 1's or 2's? 3s or 4s? 5s? 6s? 7s? I think the algorithm probably depends a bit on the base that you are starting from and your current rank. For me, I have several hundred relevent links in including a about a dozen 5s and 6s.

Heres my theory. For me, assuming relevency:

a link from a PR7 is worth 5x a PR6
PR6 is worth 5x PR5
PR4 is worth 5x PR4
PR3 is worth 5x PR2
PR2 is worth 5X PR1
PR1 is worth 5X PR0

I would be pleased to hear other theories, particularly if they are based on more solid analysis than my own......

My site: interactive homeschool curriculum

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Site Relevance

Relevancy - Everyone says that relevent links matter more. I've also heard that google likes clusters of pages that are "relevant".

How does google figure relevancy? For instance, I run an education site focused on Prek-8th grade. What does google consider relevant?

- Other education sites - do they distinguish between grade levels or elementary, middle, high, post secondary, graduate, or professional training?

- Are children a sector? Will chidlren's shopping sites be considered relevent?- Software. Is educational software relevent to games? Is web technology and marketing issues relevent to educational software? Would this link - - count less because its in a technology / software / marketing paragraph than the link in the paragraph below?

- Subject matter - Time4Learning focuses on teaching kids language arts and math with social studies and science thrown in. We are a modern version of Hooked On Phonics minus the bogus claims and high price. We compete in terms of functionality with Kumon, Sylvan, Huntington, and the other educational systems but Time4Learning has the convenience of being home-based and is very low cost. remains a great deal but unfortunately, a best-kept secret. Other quality online learning programs such as SuccessMaker, Headsprout, CleverIsland, and (tbc?) cost alot more.

Todays lunch - More content, more genuine links, no more gimmicks

I spent an hour today with a sharp local SEO guy who preached staying on the straight and narrow. His belief is that google et al are getting real sharp, starting with jagger, in finding sites whose link count comes from related sites. He also believes that these inter-related links will not just be not counted, but will hurt the site. Google will find "spoke & wheel sites" both by architecture and common ownership and will drop their sites. Very interesting. I had thought that you could not hurt your main site if you pointed to it alot since otherwise we could all nuke our competition. He pointed out that google probably has priviledged access to the whois database. My structure with being primarily focused on ecommerce and supporting Time4Learning, he thought was probably safe but not necessarily. My take-away....
Search engines fight for legitimate content and dismissal of tricks is about to accelerate. Watch out anyone near the line.
More good content without repetition or stuffing and reasonably focused on keywords, is a great investment.
Within a period indeterminate (1 year?), google will start using stickiness to prioritize sites.
Becoming an "authority" site is great and comes thru links and content.
There are no real insights into how google tracks relevance

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Cyber Monday - An index to gauge success

Time4Learning had its best day in history on cyber monday (monday after thanksgiving when the media reports that online shopping was HIGH). Is there anyplace out there that I could use a index to see if proportionately, I had a better day than anybody else? It would be great if they had an index by sector, say online elementary education or educational game sites? But still, any index which will tell me how I did proportionately to others would be useful. I did about 4x my usual business. Was that good?

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

What links matter?

How can you tell the weight of pages or of links that help you? Other than trying to figure out all the variables (importance of page, relevance of page, number of links on that page, body text vs advertisement, reciprocal links etc etc), is there a short-cut to finding out which links the search engines treat as the most important? Here is an analysis of the first dozen links reported in the search engine. Link count: google 70, Yahoo 651. MSN 6489.

BTW - I use as a metaway to count links to my site. I did just run across the most amazing set of tools at:

Google - There is the page rank system. Does the order in which sites come up when you google the sitename suggest which links are weighing most heavily? What if I use the mysterious google search on: link:, do the results of that search indicate which links are helping me the most? By the way, google list me as having a 6 page rank on my home page, 5 or 4 on most other pages. They report 70 links to my site and while their list of 70 has changed a few times in the past six months, the 70 number has not. Go figure.

MSN - Reports that I have 6,489 links. It seems to report some of the newest ones first but then, also some of the ones that correspond to google's PR system rank high.

Yahoo - 651 links is what they report for

Lets compare the first dozen links reported in each search engine's report on links to see what we can find.....

reporting engine results for G M Y - Looking at order.... 1stY 4thMSN - a new single link on a 6PR site... 1st-3rdG 16th-17thG 2ndY 2ndMSN 11thMSN - these are internal links
KlamathDesign 3rdY 5thMSN 13thMSN - multiple links, a weblog on a .com domain, some PR ~3 ? 4thY 8thY 6-7thMSN - multiple links, PR of 6 7thG 5thY 3rdMSN - multiple links, PR5 6thY 9thMSN 17thMSN 7thY 8th-9thG 9thY - many many links 10thY 4thG 5thG , 12-13thG 12thMSN - many many links 6thG 10thG 11thG 14thG 15thG 1stMSN 8thMSN 10thMSN 14thMSN 15thMSN 16thMSN (andrea hermitt) 17thMSN

Does the order of these list signify anything?
Does the fact that the Press releases don't show up signify anything?
Does the fact that some newer links show up early signify anything?
Does the fact that the blogs are listed up high signify anything?

Google links
Yahoo Search Results - 11/20/2005
MSN links - 11/20/2005

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Link Tracking Tools, SEO page analysis tools - free

link counters: - cool original analysis - based on what? - counts links from major search engines. maintains a history so you can track trends.

SEO / rank counter... - interesting tool for finding rank. - keyword density tool

Other ideas?

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Help Wanted

Its time to admit it, I need help. Anybody out there want to be an ongoing contractor / consultant to ? Problem is that I can't pay the high rates ($50-$100) an hour, I need some people to work to help with: blogs, forums, graphics, writing on education, etc etc. Below is one write-up of projects. Respond to recruiting at

I'm looking at putting together some combination of blogs, discussion groups, or forums. They would have two goals. One would be for Time4Learning parents to discuss the system amongst themselves according to their interests (special needs, Preschool-1st, middleschool etc).

The other goal would be to create discussion groups that I could sponsor that would create visibility and links for time4learning. My current idea is one called: "Special needs learning and computers" Discussion GroupsI would like the discussion groups to be accessible from the member login page. Maybe have the most recent topics portrayed there thru some sort of RSS. Other than that, I would like it to be moderated.

Should I initially start with no topics or subforums and see what discussions develop?

Or should I start with a few separate forums:- Special Needs Learning- PreK-1st- 2-3rd- 4-5th- Middle School- Homeschool IssuesWhat technology to use? Yahoo discussion groups seems like the simplest dumbest solution.

Blog for marketing1. Idea A - Set up a blog properly designed to send links and traffic to Time4Learning. I've actually already set a few of these up but I tend to dump materials there (from submitted articles, my newsletters, and website) without much method and I build links to it haphazardly. Theres no plan to build traffic, no upgrading of the base graphics, no adwords, and no way of measuring how its doing other than page rank. Right now, it is a 3 which i guess is OK.its

2. Idea B - set up a blogger site (or set of them) and invite people to come blog there. I have 700 parents who can be "given" a free blog as part of their Time4Learning membership. I also have a mailing list of 10K plus. One general topic for blogs that I would like to see get explored is Special needs learning and computers"

There is a third and fourth, perhaps related idea, that I would like to implement.A list (blog perhaps) of recently asked questions or comments by parents. Also on the Members Login page.A weekly word puzzle that we post to Time4Learning and perhaps let others put on their site as a game and a way of building page rank. Questions- What experience do you have on these projects?- How feasable / expensive would they be?- At the end, I need something thats easy to manage and which can evolve. I'd like to have one of my mom's become the forum leader.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

reading, writing, math, spelling & SEO

I have about 30 pages on my site created entirely for SEO purposes.

Fifteen of them are built around the math curriculum. They start with Preschool math and are crammed with words like preschool math lesson plans, printable worksheets, and curriculum. They continue up to eighth grade math which is full of ....yes....eighth grade math lesson plans, printable worksheets, and curriculum. While these do not read or flow as well as I would like, they have been effective at drawing traffic.

Fifteen more of them are built around a carefully constructed set of keyphrases chosen thru a tight methodology which picked the best keyphrases balancing where my site is competitive enough to get on the first page and the volum is high enough to merit the effort. These have been so far a bust (although other parts of the methodology such as building the page template have contributed to the math pages success).

Next in line, a chunk of pages by grade on spelling and reading.

I keep track of it all on my reading, writing, math, spelling page

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Blog promotion & using Blogs to promote

I've questions about how to do blog promotion. As far as I can tell, nobody reads this blog but me. I've never gotten a comment (other than spam) or an email. How does one promote a blog?

Heres what I've done...
I've created a few links to this blog from other blogs. Just to try kickstarting it and to get some sophisticated input (or sales calls), I've posted by heart out to the SEO Guy's Forum... I even told them all my secrets like this blog and which types of pages are working (Elementary Math Curriculum ) and which ones are not: Online Lesson Time .
I've created a few links to this blog from other sites.
I do the ping the weblog-search engines link which says it sends out lots of news.
I update it regularly with my invaluable insights and queries.

Current status:
- Google ranks the blog as a 2
- Google lists two links in, Yahoo (who is the most generous with links) only gives it 12.

The other half of the question is whether this blog has any possibility of helping promote my site. or even a lesser site like: ? (google ranks of 6 & 3 respectively).

I register my sites at which seems to have started offering some limited hosting with a clumbsy web-builder tool. I just used it and created - could a new site make any difference at all? Probably, it has the weight of a feather. I have a few dozen clever names of domains that I pay for and don't do much with. So I've started using the free web creator and putting up little domains with keywords and links. I imagine this is of marginal value (as in virtually none). Take a look at TimeFourLearning - designated by Reading Math Writing Skills Site.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

personal seo course - gather a dozen to work with...

- On page elements - H1, keyphrase density
- Keyphrases - order, engines, minor, major
- on page other issues - size, links that count (content) vs outside - how to tell
- things that hurt
- blogs
- yahoo speciality

tb continued

web site architecture, size - folders - other factors that matter?

What architecture is best for SEO purposes?
- Star - every page points to sitemap which points back to each page?
- Organizational chart - home page points to 5 other pages which are each chapter headings which point to 5 closely related pages. These pages point to the others in their cluster. Should they also point to the other chapter heads?
- Sequential - Page A points to B points to C etc
- Combination of start & chart? Start & sequential?

Linking architecture
If I have a 100 links into my site, is it better to have them all pointed to one page or to spread them across all the pages?

If I have three websites and only one is the one (say A) that matters to me, what the best way to organize them?
- Should be B & C both point to A? Presumably yes. By the way, my A site (a learning site) has Educational Teaching Games and my B site (also used to learn about affiliate programs and how to learn to do websites myself) has first grade learning games. ( and respectively)
- Would it be better for outside links to point to B & C or directly to A?
- Would it best for advertising (for people) links to go to A but for spider-oritented links to be aiming at B or C?
- I gather that the "bad" or "black" seo types do all their black stuff with sites that only point to their main site, this keeps their main site intact. Also, they don't have a fixed "main" site, they just move it around.

Folders - Is it better to have sections? Do folders for the pages help the search engines find the sections or clusters? In the case of , would a folder called 2nd grade help if I put all the pages related to 2nd grade (2nd grade math, 2nd grade learning games, 2nd grade software, 2nd grade reading, 2nd grade curriculum) in it?

Are the search engines able to keep track of clusters that overlap? Using the example above, I have clusters that organize by grade level and also by subject area (learning games, math, learning software, curriculum, reading etc).

BTW - my assumption is basically while its good to gather info and follow the trends, to accept that the real algorithms will evolve quickly and that I should assume that google's ability to implement which more or less match my ability to dream up what they should do so I build a little bit independently of what I learn. Of course, if I was willing to read more and immerse myself in the evolving details of whats hots, I might do better. Maybe I will......

Search Engines Concept still feels primitive

The search engines still seem primitive. While each balances:
- on page factors
- links

They don't integrate any of the more important information such as:
- what text appears in the search engine results (so you know what you're getting)
- what the intent of the searcher was - research? shopping? new sites? old sites? news sites? reference?
- how satisfied previous searchers were with that result for that search - measured by some sort of feedback like how long they spent on the site, whether they backed up immediately, or even what they said...(ie integrated feedback with search)
- site popularity in terms of number of visitors or better yet, repeat visitors

Is this in works?
Are some search engines doing it already?

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Link Building Strategy

I just read the article or newsletter..Are Reciprocal Links Dead?
It was interesting in that they hypothesized, tested, and then concluded that google's latest release, jagger, discounts links that are reciprocal.

Here are my unanswered questions:

- Relevancy - What does google consider relevant?

- Weight - Does a PR 2 count 2x as much as 1. 5x as much? 10x as much? If you already have 10 1s, is there any marginal benefit from the next 1? Any articles on this?

- Do reciprocal links nuke you?

- Are sites with alot of links to you counted alot?

To be continued... kids are calling....

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Google - Oct 05 shifting - Jagger?

I put this up on Matt Cutts Blog with the Jagger Update info...

Time4Learning Said,
November 1, 2005 @ 6:49 am

In the last half of October, a number of my pages that had never done well in the searches started pulling enormous traffic. The pattern seems to be that my longer pages which are very dense on keywords did well.
Pages that previously did well including some that had no true SEO structure, low keyword density, and were somewhat short, seem to be doing slightly worse.
Any thoughts?

Another possible explanation has to do with some "deep links" that I've put out there, like on this blog.....

Specific winners:
Second Grade Math Curriculum
Phonics Curriculum

Really Useful Sites to learn from

Having read oodles of junk & fluff, I'm determined to keep track of sites that seem knowledgeable and substantative and well...useful. Useful to me (whos not a beginner but certainly not a veteran or guru).

Best site i've found yet- right from the source - Matt Cutts - google SEO insites

Debbie Weil - Her blog is good but a bit overwhelming for me to learn from. Her site also has a useful-looking book. But, she has a weekly newsletter which, from the archives that I've looked at, are really great. I just posted to her site to see if she'll answer my anchor text questions. - I posted to the SEO-Guy's site to see if I could get any useful advice. So far, nothing much.....

Negative Keywords for Natural search

I put this on I just read the comment about letting websites put in "negative keywords" for natural search.

I use negative keywords on PPC and would be willing to use the same for natural search if only google would ask.

I'm an education site and the word "reading" is a striking example. Reading has three contexts: astrology, literacy, and a city of Pennsylvania (and maybe another in the UK). Basically, about 60% of the searches with reading are for astrology, about 25% relate to literacy, and the rest to geography. There are a few for others like poetry reading or health readings.

Since we don't really want each others traffic, someone should create a negative meta.

I optimize for learning to read or reading for literacy purposes.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Site Architectures - Keyboarding vs Typing

I've yet to see an intelligent discussion of how best, from an SEO perspective, to architect a site or array of sites.

There are lots of essays and software on how to layout a page (length, keyword density---- use of keywords in titles (h1s) and body text and metatitles etc.

But where is the essay on site architectures?
- Should every page link to every other page?
- Should every page link to a sitemap which links to every page?
- Should groups of pages link to each other in some sort of subject-based cluster?
- Are external links more valuable than internal links.
In my mind's eye, I see a set of diagrams similiar to the early diagrams of LAN architectures (token ring vs ethernet vs star etc)

Heres a test. I've two pages on (Learning in Todays World) related to typing and keyboarding courses. One only has internal links...its called ~/keyboardingcourse . The other page only has external links. Its called In one month, I'll check to see which one has superior page rank on google.

Monday, October 10, 2005 steals my traffic steals my traffic!!!!

A number of members of my educational service - - have recently commented that they wanted to find my site but were instead taken to - an Ebay site.

Apparently, these are the types of users that start everyday by typing their destination into a search engine and then clicking on some of the searches that come up (obviously, they should bookmark's member login page or at least type the url directly into the address bar but thats a story for another day).

It seems that uses my name - time4learning - in the title bar of their google ads for themselves!!! I'm very flattered.

Actually, probably has some clever algorithm that finds searches where they can post their advertisement for a nickel or less and which sticks the searched keyphrase into the title. All the same, I don't like taking my traffic this way. I'm going to contact them to see if I can get off the list. I wonder if its possible.

Any experience out there?

Do lists like this help build page rank & traffic?

Sunday, October 09, 2005

BLOG SPAM - What to do?

It seems that most of the comments that I get here are spam from people trying to promote websites. Any ideas from anybody before I just turn off comments?

It's essentially a blog of my efforts to promote

Monday, September 26, 2005

Adsense Revenue

Last spring (2005), I managed to pull in 60% of the money that I was spending on adwords via ads from adsense. Over a three month period, I found that I could get a 15% click on the ads and that I had an average revenue per click of $.20 although I was buying traffic at $.06. It was great.

Then I took down all the ads from my site with education learning and games online to see if my conversion rate would improve. My conversion rate did improve.

Sadly, the numbers overall did not. What I lost in ad revenue was not made up for by improved conversions. And I have not been able to rebuild the system to get those same great numbers. Like the great Dr. Jekyll, the magic formula was never really understood and whatever caused it cannot seem to be refound.

Anybody have any reason to think it had to do with any changes in google's adsense campaign from last May?

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Search Engines - Pt 3 - Keyphrases

Keyphrases are a weird science

More specific (ie multiword) combinations are generally lower volume and more targetted than single words. For instance, take the word READING. It turns out that most people who type in the word reading are looking for the something astrological. Also, many are interested in a town called Reading. Then there are those who are interested in education or literacy. To avoid the confusion from using a broad term, focus on more specific terms such as:

learning to read
remedial reading programs
2nd grade reading skills
learning elementary reading skills
pre reading skills such as phonemic awareness

Sometimes two word combinations are less popular than one word combinations.
Heres a quiz - What two word combination is more popular than the single word search: "school". Yes, it is...." school girls"

Each search engine treats the details of keyphrases differently.

For instance,
- which engine treats 2nd grade and second grade the same?
- which engine treats them differently?
- which engine treats learning game and learning games differently?
- which engine treats them the same?

To get a a feel for a behind-the-scenes look at my keyphrases, check out my private guide to keyphrases and links to them -

Search Engines & How to Place in them - Intro - Pt 1

I'm frequently asked to explain search engines and how to place in them.

1. Natural Search vs Paid Search - Type in any term (try reading) into the google search engine, you'll notice that there are two columns of info.

On the left is whats called "natural search". This is google's effort to provide you with the most relevent and important matches. On the right side, in a column titled "sponsored search", are advertisements which have been matched with your search. These are PPC (pay per click) advertisements. When you click on them, the advertiser pays google some amount of money.

2. There are many many many search engines. Focus on Google for starters, its at least 55% of the search market. When you start looking at the different search engines, one tricky to understand issue is that some search engines use other search engines. And this keeps changing. For instance, AOL relies on Google for search. AskJeeves (now ASK) primarily uses the results from Google. Yahoo relied on the google sponsored search results until they bought Overture and now they use their own sponsored search results. The three biggest search engines in order are:
- Google - 60% of the searches
- Yahooo - 15% of the searches
- MSN - 15% of the searches and climbing fast
- Ask, tom's search engine, dick's search & directory firm, harry's A-Z business directory & search etc etc
BTW - search engines are different than directories but we'll get to that another day.

3. Find out what people are searching for. The volume matters - will tell you for the previous month what the number of searches were for a given key phrase in the US on the yahoo search engine. Another useful free tool is which you can install and use on your computer. Its not at all obvious or intuitive what the volume searches are. Plus, why.

Continue to part 2

Demos - Remote Learning

I have found another great tool - I can now do remote demos using:

This will allow us to show's great K-6 Homeschool Curriculua to users without hoping that they look at the right educational fun games for kids.

I wonder if it works with flash?

Browser Compatibility

I thought that testing required getting access to all the different browsers and a mac....While doing this is always a good test, I just discovered this gem: - a site for testing for all the different browsers.

Our educational teaching games and implementations of Compass Learning Odyssey will now be tested there.

Friday, August 19, 2005

search engines - Pt 2 - Natural Search -

4. Pick some relevant keyphrases and be realistic, you can get some good ones, but the keyphrases with huge volume are not accessible generally to new sites. The best strategy is to spend some time finding some mid-volume phrases that match well with what you do and which have not become too competitive. Details to follow.

5. google counts links in a sophisticated manner. Obviously, links from big sites count more than from little ones. External more than internal. From strangers more than same address. Text links in body count more than ads.
6 Track your links.
7. Build your links

Monday, August 15, 2005

SEO - Alt Tags - Animated Gifs

Can I put anchor text that will count for SEO relevence in google when using an animated gif tile ad?

How would i use that animated gif with:
- alt text - kids math games learn to read programs educational teaching games
- a link to -

Would I do better to use link to the gifs or to copy over the gifs?

kids math games learn to read programs educational teaching games

SEO - What links matter?

Do links in sites like bookmarks count?

Will those links help the people? Can a bookmark page get a high enough rating so it helps lift other pages?

Does an entire blog have the same ranking or can individual articles have different ratings in google?

Server Side Includes - SSI - Include Archives

For simple management of a website, you can use build with templates or SSI - server side includes. One of the problems is keeping track of the ssi's that you create. Since they are invisible, it can be very difficult for a new designer or for an absend-minded one (and aren't we all?) to take advantage of the SSI's that exist.

Introducing the incredibly-simple : Include Archives !!!

For asset mgt, this is a nifty solution. Other assets are easy to track since pictures and headlines etc are visible and you can point at them to get their reference. But having an archive of server side includes - SSI is great. To quote one of my chief designers.... :-D

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Time4Learning Site Map

Time4Learning - Learn Reading & Math Online - Home
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Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Useful online resources for marketing - continued - this site run by Robert Woodhead, blends commercial and self-indulgent elements. It appears to be asking for contributions (tips for tips) and asking a sales site for his tools & services.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Setting up a blog

So, I've set up two blogs. One as a way of keeping track (and hoepfully soliciting answers) to some of my questions. This one.

The other as a way of building links & attracting customers to my site.

How do I manage, optimize, and use these blogs?

- How do I get bloggers with online marketing expertise (there are alot), to read and answer these questions?

-How do I build my marketing blog to do what its supposed to?
- Should it be on blogspot? On blogspot and on my website thru RSS? Only on my website?
- How do I find out if anyone is reading it (blogger does not seem to come with any tracking software)?
- How do I ask other bloggers to read and reference it?

Coherent answers (not just solicitations although I'm potentially interested) very welcome.....

Keywords & keyphrases & anchor text questions?

I have a buncho questions relating to how keywords & keyphrases work. Lets start just with google. My site is called: . Obviously, I might be interested in optimizing for the word "learning" or more likely, since I'm unlikely to get on the first pages for learning, some keyphrase such as "learning games", or "learning & games", "Learning Online". Or "Learn Reading & Math Online."

If I get alot of links pointing to my site, what are the implications of different anchor text? For instance, how do I think about the difference of these anchor text configurations?

Learning & Games Online - Time4Learning
Learning & Games Online - Time4Learning


Learning Reading & Math Online - Time4Learning
Learn Reading & Math Online - Time4Learning

Does the word "learning" buried in the middle of this phrase, count towards the word learning? Would it be useful, clever, or somewhere in between to use:

Learning Reading & Math Online - Time4Learning.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Here is an approach to creating submitted articles which "deep link" to get pages into the search engines.

Any comments on this approach? By the way, I have about ten interesting articles like this one. Mostly, they are less "heavy handed" in their use of links....

An elementary math curriculum for supplementary or home school should teach much more than the "how to" of simple arithmetic. A good math curriculum should have elementary math activities that build a solid foundation which is both deep and broad, conceptual and "how to".What is a quality Elementary Math Curriculum?A quality math curriculum contains a wide range of elementary math activities, which cover more than just arithmetic, math facts, and operations. An elementary math curriculum should teach these five math strands.*Number Sense and Operations - Knowing how to represent numbers, recognizing 'how many' are in a group, and using numbers to compare and represent paves the way for grasping number theory, place value and the meaning of operations and how they relate to one another.Algebra - The ability to sort and order objects or numbers and recognizing and building on simple patterns are examples of ways children begin to experience algebra. This elementary math concept sets the groundwork for working with algebraic variables as a child's math experience grows.Geometry and Spatial Sense - Children build on their knowledge of basic shapes to identify more complex 2-D and 3-D shapes by drawing and sorting. They then learn to reason spatially, read maps, visualize objects in space, and use geometric modeling to solve problems. Eventually children will be able to use coordinate geometry to specify locations, give directions and describe spatial relationships.Measurement - Learning how to measure and compare involves concepts of length, weight, temperature, capacity and money. Telling the time and using money links to an understanding of the number system and represents an important life skill.Data Analysis and Probability - As children collect information about the world around them, they will find it useful to display and represent their knowledge. Using charts, tables, graphs will help them learn to share and organize data.Elementary math curriculums that cover just one or two of these five math strands are narrow and lead to a weak understanding of math. Help your child build a strong, broad math foundation. Learn more about Time4Learning's elementary math curriculum.
Math Facts - Where do they fit in building a math foundation?Learn Math, Math Skills, & Build a Math Foundation Online
PreSchool Math Curriculum
Kindergarten Math Curriculum
Elementary Math Curriculum
First Grade Math Curriculum
Second Grade Math Curriculum

Third Grade Math Curriculum

FourthGrade Math Curriculum

Fifth Grade Math Curriculum
Sixth Grade Math Curriculum
Seventh Grade Math Curriculum
Eighth Grade Math Curriculum
Fraction Lessons