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Volume 2 - Issue 14 7-13-07

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Table of Contents for this issue.....

1.    Authors Comments

2.    Q & A, Suggestions and Comments

3.    eBay Classified Ads Revisited

4.    Other Auction Sites

5.    Recent Poll Results  

6. Guest Author

7.    Web 2.0 Websites for Rookies

Author's Comments

 

Linda and some of her girl friends are off to Lake Medina for some girl time and some kayaking.

 

She will then attend a baby shower in San Antonio for our grandson, John Mark -Thomas who will arrive in September.  Next, she is off to Lake Jackson , Texas to help her mother recover from a knee replacement.

 

I am going to be alone for a while and I already wish she were home with me.  I am proofing this issue by my lonesome so “cut me some slack”.

 

Q & A, Suggestions and Comments

 

Ana is evaluating Site Build It against other web hosts.   She and I have had a running email conversation about this comparison.  Here is an email in which my answers are embedded after her questions.

 

-----Original Message-----

From: Ana – Email address deleted

Sent: Saturday, June 30, 2007 1:47 PM

To: John Howe; John Howe

Subject: Some concerns about SBI (I know, I promised, but ...)

 

Hi John,

 

A concern about the SBI forum: I would advise anyone

to be very, very careful about going on a public forum

talking about your business details. Ideas are not

easily copyrightable and are stolen all the time.

 

I'd want to communicate only with my advisor --

privately. After all, the company has many sites in

similar niches competing with each other.

 

On that forum are not just potential communicators,

but competitors. Has anyone else raised this concern?

 

JH - What is discussed on the forums are not so much about the content of the sites, but how to make the sites work.  People on the forums know that competitors are on the forums with them and they have to make the decision what to divulge.

 

Also, to clarify a previous answer: The site "owner"

does not actually own the SBI site; it's owned by the

company. You own only the content and any graphics or

other design elements you added yourself. Moving would

be very difficult if not impossible.

 

JH - The ownership is not much different from any web host.  If you host on GoDaddy, you do not own the GoDaddy site.  You are just purchasing space on their server for your content.  You can move the content to another server when you want.

 

Anyone who wants a forum on their site would not be

able to have one. Isn't that among the software SBI

can't host? Also, videos would be difficult for the

same reason -- or at least good-quality ones.

 

JH - that is true.  SBI does not host server side applications like forum software, blogging software (Word Press), etc.  My experience with forums has been poor.  I established the forum on Boomer-Entrepreneur.com and it has not been popular and it costs me time to keep the spammers off.

 

Ok, accepted. I don't plan a forum at present. In my

niche there are hundreds of forums; there's nothing I

can possible add. Blogs would be more appropriate. I

admit I was considering more than one, as I have

sub-niches. Videos, too, may be in the works once I

get the equipment and learn how. So ... some

challenges.

 

JH - SBI recently improved the handling of special files.  You still cannot post an .exe file on SBI.  I post those on my non-SBI sites and download them from there.

 

What if you buy SBI and decide to design your own

site, providing your own template? Do you own your

site then?

 

JH - you own the content of your website whether it is SBI or any other host.  You own your domain name.  It is your website, but it is hosted where ever you choose.

 

On a further but related point: Ken Evoy made some

telling remarks about design in his latest newsletter

-- telling considering how SBI kind of poo-poos the

concept. I'll address those in a separate post to you.

Maybe others will be interested.

 

JH - Ana, in previous emails, we have discussed site design and how it is perceived.  I am turned off by what some consider great site design.  When a flash intro page comes up when I first visit a website, I find myself frantically looking for the "Skip Intro" link.  I don't have time to watch what some webmaster spent untold hours creating thinking it was "cool".

 

I do not know what your ideal vision is of good site design so I cannot really address your concern.  The bottom line - on the Internet people are searching for information.  Anything that gets in the way of that search is not appreciated by the users of the Net.

 

Great ezine. Thanks and have a good weekend.

 

JH - Thanks for your complement.  Take care of yourself.

 

Ana

 

If you have anything for this section or you have a suggestion for a topic for an article, please send us an email with your suggestions or your input.  With your help, we can improve the Boomer Video eZine.  

eBay Classified Ads Revisited  

Last week I wrote about a making an error on a classified ad and then not being able to easily change it.  

The initial work around was to add to the description in the form of a postscript (P. S.).  

Well, if you use the infinite number of monkeys and infinite number of typewriters theory, you can finally find a way to do it.  

Sidebar:  If you have never heard of the monkeys and typewriter theory, check it out on Google.  I first read it in the novel “On the Beach” by Nevil Shute in 1958.  

The theory says that if you give an infinite number of monkeys an infinite number of typewriters (that dates the saying) one of the monkeys will eventually type the Bible.  

I have adapted the saying to mean if you keep trying combinations of possible solutions, you will eventually find the right one.  (Just keep hitting the keys and something will pop up).  

I kept looking on eBay and the solution was right there under my nose.  

I was trying to use the Edit function (see picture) which seemed logical.  I checked the box and clicked Edit.

For some unexplained reason, eBay did not like this.  To me it seems obvious that Edit means to change, but logic did not prevail.

I kept poking around and in the drop down box on the right of the listing summary, I found a “Revise” option.  I tried that and lo and behold, it allowed me to change the links that were wrong.  Notice the other options that are hiding in the dropdown box.

This brought up a page that for all practical purposes is just like the listing page.  I was able to modify the HTML in the Item Description field and correct the bad links that I put in earlier.  

If you use classified ads, keep this one filed away for future reference so you do not waste you time like I did trying to find how to correct a classified ad.  

Other Auction Sites  

It is amazing what you learn just cruising around the Net.  I was on Eons.com reading posts in some of the groups to which I belong when I came across mention of etsy.com and ecrater.com. Never having heard of them, I checked them out.  

Etsy.com is a craft and handmade products auction site.  It appears to operate like eBay with listing fees and selling fees.  It is popular and has great traffic with an Alexa rank of 2,309.  I looked and there are books and magazines listed so I may list my ebook on etsy.com to generate traffic to Boomer eZine.  

Ecrater.com is a free auction site.  The Alexa rank for ecrater.com is 12,046 which is great traffic too (rough rule of thumb – anything under 100,000 is great).  

Ecrater appears to be more relaxed on its rules and regs.  It makes its money by selling you advertising position in the website.  If you want your ad to stand out, you pay them for having it displayed more prominently on the site.  I will probably double back to this site to list my ebook for traffic generation to Boomer eZine.  

Check these out and see if they might help you generate traffic to your website – or you might have items to list for sale on these sites.  

Recent Poll Results  

This is short and sweet.  

A Harris poll showed that 72% of households

want to start a work-from-home business.  An

online business is THE best way to change

their lives.  

This is not surprising.  This seems to be a major trend in our world.  This is why Linda and I write Boomer eZine and why I continue to preach that Site Build It is the way to a successful work-from-home business.

Take three minutes to watch this video by Ken Evoy, President of Site Sell, Inc.

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Wait until The 3 Minute Shortcut has finished, or pause it, before touring these visual links...
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Tube It! next arrow Tour It! next arrow Join It! next arrow Tortoise It! next arrow Doubt It? next arrow Try It!
Videos From The Heart How SBI! Makes You Succeed SBI! Family Bulletin Board SBI! Business Philosophy Ask Anything To An SBI! Owner Risk-Free Test Drive
(The middle four links above open a new browser window.)
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If you have any questions about Site Build It, you can speak with an SBI owner (other than myself) who can answer any questions that you might have.  Follow this link for more details.

Guest Author  

I always scan “Site Pro New” for some interesting or informative article.  We mentioned Site Pro News in Boomer eZine Volume 2 Issue 4 (http://www.boomer-ezine.com/V2I4_050407.htm).  

Bogdan Badulescu published an article in Site Pro News from his blog at http://bynapse.blogspot.com.  

We have discussed various aspects of Web 2.0, but I felt that this article does a great job of summarizing it for us.  

I wrote Bogdan and he was kind enough to reply.  

Hello John,

Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving a word.
As I state in my blog's footer, you may publish any article from my blog providing that you link back to me and give me the credit for it. Please also read my disclaimer on the blog at http://bynapse.blogspot.com.
 

I shall be happy to link back to your ezine as well.  

BTW, great domain name !

Best Regards,
Bogdan Badulescu
 

Web 2.0 Websites for Rookies

This age of the internet is all about decentralization.

Only a few years ago, during the “bursting of the dot-com bubble”, almost an entire generation concluded that the internet is over hyped and turned its attention elsewhere, thus leaving place to a new generation of technology and models to get center stage and turn the tables out in cyberspace. Web 2.0 does not mean there’s a new version of the internet out there, it’s not a technical specification. The term was promoted, according to Wikipedia, by O’Reily Media in 2003 and it’s explained in depth in the “What is Web 2.0” article.


The decentralization is the main concept that made the tables turn on the web and building a presence out in cyberspace these days has to consider the beneficial aspects of what took place. For marketers and brands, it’s still a headache, since the “portal” which was the key of the “first age” or “first generation” of internet communities is no longer the key to getting the word out. This time, the “consumer” is mastering its own universe and products and brands are orbiting around them.

Bloggers and online communities go around constraints. It is human nature to avoid barriers and wherever one is encountered online, the stream goes around and ignores the constraint to a degree that may throw the site, brand or portal to internet’s shed and thus dramatically hurting its business. Blogging, social networking, search engines and friendly directories on the other hand are the new community and here is where “word-of-mouth” is happening and getting a recommendation about a product values more than all the publicity around it.


Excellent examples of Web2.0 websites are YouTube, MySpace, Flickr, Digg, Del.icio.us or Technorati to name a few and, of course, Google which probably represents to Web 2.0 what Netscape meant to the internet before the turn of the century. There is a wealth of information out there so when you start your web presence, know that you should consider it.


Not everything that has the 2.0 extension at the end is really about web 2.0 though. It’s a concept and an age of the internet and many are trying to take a profit out of internet rookies by selling web 2.0 related items. Just use your better judgment and look for reviews in those wonderful online communities. Joining these new and dynamic communities is exciting and fulfilling as it opens up, literally, the planet and connects you to whatever is actually making news out there.
There has never been a better and easier time to join and get connected and for a website publisher or webmaster.

I’ve put together this list of ideas to get you started. Please comment and add to this list so that the web can benefit from it.

         Write a paragraph about what your website stands for and submit it to share sites like Digg, Reddit or Now Public. Bookmark your site on Del.icio.us and submit your site to StumbleUpon. Submit your following articles from your press section to those directories when you publish them on your site. If you’re writing for geeks, submit your site to Slashdot too. Here is a top 10 social bookmark links list from About.com.

         Create a Google Group or Yahoo Group covering your site topics.

         Create a blog and use it to be honest about your site or your interests. A blog is personal and the language used is less formal. You can actually write in a blog, responsibly but “off your company’s record”. Try using Blogger, Word Press or MySpace. I am also using Freewebs but I find Blogger to be the easiest to use. Now if you do that, you should join Technorati and claim your blog.

         Submit your site to search engine friendly directories and DMOZ.org. This process should be free but it’s time consuming.

         Most blogging directories offer Real Simple Syndication (RSS feeds) by default. You should use it for your site’s news section too. As soon as you have an RSS, submit it to feed aggregators like FeedBurner or Squidoo. Some of those aggregators offer you the possibility to send out a newsletter with the newest articles, automatically.

         Test your site and make sure it appears correctly in all major browsers. We are living wonderful times for testing site appearance on different browsers and making sure that the site is compliant to W3C standards and looks good across browsers since Safari, the web browser used on Mac, is now available for windows too so you can have all the browsers on one OS to test with, unless you develop on Mac and you have IE5.

         Use excellent portals like YouTube and Google Video to post video and Flickr, Photobucket or Picasa Web Albums to publish photos.

         Search engines love XML sitemaps. You can submit that to Google webmaster tools and keep an eye on your site’s traffic with Google Analytics or the new set of tools from Yahoo, the Site Explorer.

Publishing advertisement and having high page ranking are good for the morale, but most visitors use ad-blockers and optimizing for search engines is a continuous job and there are professionals out there doing just that, keyword: “SEO Optimization”. Those are not the goals of the new websites and, if high page ranking helps, it does not guarantee popularity. For designers, digital-web offers a nice article about web 2.0 from the designer perspective.

I will not go into depths about what each of the sites mentioned above stands for. Research is probably the most enlightening experience one can have and I leave it all to you. Comment and add items to my lists and keep in mind that web 2.0 is all about social media, the consumer takes center stage, and that changes the world.

End of Bogdan’s article

That wraps up our issue for this week.  Until next week, stay tuned.  

John and Linda Howe  

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That wraps up our issue for this week.  Until next week, stay tuned.

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