This year I participated in my very first holiday grab bag. I have somehow managed to survive into adulthood having never taken part in an authentic, organized gift grab bag with rules and everything—and I think I’m hooked. Now, the rules I am still a little hazy on but that’s okay. There are always others present (no pun intended, well, maybe a little) who know the rules well, and play to win. I just follow their lead. I’ve emerged from my very first grab bag swap with some high-class loot, and learned a few important things about grab bag etiquette that I’d like to pass along to SEO Boy readers who may just find a tip or two that’ll come in handy this season:
- First, to feel like you can really play to win, you have to contribute a top-notch grab bag item yourself. If you don’t, the guilt could keep you up nights. If you’re like me, spending your first Christmas with the in-laws, you have the added pressure of gifting to impress so put some thought into it and DO NOT let your spouse pick your gift. The tiny space heater will NOT be the hit he’s predicting. Surprise! The whole family already has heat— pick something else.
- Second, play the game. I learned in one round, this is like ‘Survivor.’ Form alliances, steal gifts, and take no prisoners. I followed these rules and came out with a first-rate grab bag gift and I’m still here! I was not escorted from my in-laws home or given the silent treatment. Barring any secret plot or unknown sabotage, I have come out relatively unscathed—and I have a full-feature back massager. Let’s see how you do!
- Finally, being a good salesman is key. When the variety pack of holiday underwear emerges from your chosen gift bag, you own it until you can make someone else believe it’s exactly what they wanted. I give the credit for this tip entirely to an elegant move by my father-in-law, who slipped into his newly unwrapped all-weather poncho, complete with zippered pouch, and modeled it’s excellence and demonstrated features that I am pretty sure he made up. Did that pouch really have a hot dog warmer? I think not, but good show!
So, now that I’m a pro at the holiday grab bag, why not get one going right here at SEO Boy? I’m always looking for a new blog, useful website, or resource for SEO-related news, tips, and data. So, in the spirit of the season, I wanted to share a few of my favorites with our loyal SEO Boy readers and encourage everyone to participate in our SEO grab bag. It’s simple; leave a comment with your own favorite blog, website, resource, tool, or anything related to SEO that inspires you. Now, scroll through the list of my additions and those left by our fellow SEO enthusiasts and see if you can find something new and useful in our SEO grab bag! There’s no limit so, you can pick and choose any items that are useful to you.
Here’s my contribution to the SEO grab bag—I’ve limited myself to my top three resources that you may have overlooked. Don’t forget to add to the list and share your favorite SEO-related sites and resources. I hope you find something interesting, fun, and useful in your SEO efforts for 2009!
This is my absolute favorite resource for up-to-date search engine facts and figures. Want to see which search engine is leading the pack in search volume? Hitwise Data Center can tell you that, and updates this information monthly! See which search terms are getting the most traffic with Hitwise’s Top 10 Fast Moving Search Terms list. See which products your customers are searching for or which topics or news items are getting the most attention online. For many of us, this can be priceless information when putting together an SEO strategy. For all the ecommerce folks out there, there’s also the Hitwise Retail Data Center, with stats and data specifically for online retail.
Search engines are a relatively new frontier, and the legal landscape of the internet is constantly changing. Things going on behind the scenes can have a big impact on how we market online, so why not keep up with the latest legal happenings related to SEO and online marketing? Eric Goldman’s Marketing & Technology Blog gives readers the highlights of legal current events that affect the online industry, broken down and analyzed to let us know how things can affect our online activities. An interesting read that could also give you a heads up on industry changing events and legal decisions.
Here’s one that is specifically for online retailers. Shop.org is a membership community for online retailers, but you don’t have to be a member to take advantage of some of the resources made available on their website. If you look carefully, you’ll find research and other resources freely available if you take some time to look around. For instance, right now you can download the Holiday Survival Kit, filled with Holiday facts, historical information, 2007 consumer research highlights and more. Read the Shop.org press releases for results to some of their latest research studies and surveys. You may just find that stats and information that will help get your SEO projects rolling or answer your burning questions. Also, keep an eye on the Shop.org blog—a great source for what’s new and important in ecommerce.
You’ve probably heard me say a number of times how important an integrated online marketing campaign is to your overall results. SEO is a great tool, but imagine what it could do for you if you combined a well-formed SEO Strategy with expert PPC advertising? Why not give it a try? When you’re ready to start learning about PPC and how it can complement and improve your SEO strategy, take a look at PPC Hero—an award winning blog authored by some of the very same writers you’ve gotten to know right here at SEO Boy! With top-notch tips and actionable advice, PPC Hero can help you expand your search marketing knowledge and maximize your online results.
Now, how about your favorites…