It’s almost hard to believe how big Amazon has become. But for those of us that have been paying attention, it is even harder to believe how much selling on Amazon has changed. But first, a little background on me.
I started shifting my attention from Google to Amazon back in 2013 because even back then, it was obvious (to me, at least) that Google would never disappear, but that it was a mature market. The opportunities were all there that had always been there. But there were very few easy roads to success in Google. Yet, I remembered the “good old days” of 2003 when Google AdWords (now Ads) clicks were five cents and we could easily get e-commerce sales worth hundreds in profits from them. Those were good times. But Google Ads are an auction, and it all evened out. You can easily still succeed with Google Ads, but you need to know what you’re doing, you need a good product, and you need patience.
Google SEO is not much different. I feel strongly that the last ten years have pushed SEO marketers to polarize. Most have listened and obeyed Google. They have gone almost completely “white hat” and obeyed. They “create good content” and they “get natural links”. This works, in general. It is also safe. You don’t get banned (usually). But you also can’t win at the really competitive markets. That’s where the polarization comes in. The really big money is in the competitive stuff. The competitive stuff is where the black hat marketers live. By the way, if you have a negative attitude toward “black hat marketers”, you need to rethink that. These marketers generally are not doing illegal or immoral stuff. Google likes to paint it that way, but it’s not necessarily true. They just aren’t obeying Google. As such, they find the tricks, they exploit them, they make a lot of money, they eventually get banned by Google, and they do it all over again, and again, and again.
Don’t worry, this post is about Amazon. Hang with me here. (more…)
Three years ago, on January 15th, 2013, I announced here that HIPPO Internet Marketing was closing. After ten years, I decided to stop taking clients and focus on my e-commerce sites. Shortly after that, I went to Ephricon as their Director of Client Services for about a year.
Two years ago, after Ephricon became Straight North, I took some Internet marketing clients, but mostly just those that I already had a relationship with already. I never opened up Hippo Internet Marketing in the sense that I started taking clients. But now, after three years of being “closed”…
HIPPO Internet Marketing is Open again!
In fact, I’ve started to redesign our website at www.HippoIM.com!
(I love the fact that my office is the main picture on the home page.)
In early September, I made the decision to start investing in switching our e-commerce websites over to the Shopify platform. Historically, we’ve used several platforms, most notably Volusion. However, it’s becoming more and more evident that Shopify has come out as the strong leader in e-commerce platforms.
Basically Shopify is to e-commerce platforms what WordPress is to blogging platforms. There are several others out there, including Volusion and Big Commerce. But Shopify is not only leading, but making a strong push to drive far ahead of the others.
I’ll post my thoughts and feelings on Shopify on my newly recreated consulting site soon. But in short, I’ll say that it’s amazing easy to build a site on this platform. It’s also easy to extend it to do all the extra things you want to do with their Shopify Apps system.
The whole process was extremely painless and we were able to go live in less than three months. Not bad for an entirely new site with about 200 products, new images and new content. The new site is named Bellman Cart Specialists. Although we’re trying to sell online, the real push for this site is to promote that we are expert consultants on the topic. We’re hoping for more leads as opposed to online orders with this site. We’ll see.
I just finished reading a nice blog post on “How to Get More Instagram Followers“. It details 7 practical steps for how to ethically get more followers. Interestingly, when you start looking around online, you’ll find websites that you can buy Instagram followers on. (Seems like a less ethical method to me.)
But why? What’s the big deal with more followers on Instagram?
A colleague of mine is talking about starting up a new networking event for the Charlotte area that targets entrepreneurs and marketers, especially those that focus on Internet businesses and marketing.
It will be different from what I’ve done and from what others are doing in Charlotte. For example, it may have some fairly significant financial backing, which means we can pull in some fairly big names.
The idea is to keep it light and fun and not necessarily just informational. In other words, he’s hoping it will be attract marketers and business owners, but high-end and more like a party than a typical networking event.
Attention Charlotte Marketers: Here’s your chance!
I’d like to know who you’d like to hear from. Who would you like to bring to Charlotte that you would enjoy hearing from? This is our opportunity, so I’d like to hear your thoughts.
Here’s some ideas to get started…
NOTE: No promises on these or any others.
Obviously, some may be too expensive. More likely, they just aren’t available.
MORE IMPORTANTLY: I would like some help with this one. Who can you think of? Who would you most likely enjoy hearing from right here in Charlotte?
Last night I was honored to have Brandon Uttley present the 2012 Internet Marketing Forecast with me at my meetup. He provided some valuable insights into the role of social media and what marketers need to be spending their time on this year. Hopefully, he will post some of his notes on his blog.
Here are some of the things I predicted. I have broken them into three categories.
I feel that they exaggerate far too often and typically over-simplify statistics. But for some reason, I like this one.
It’s not because I love Facebook. In fact, I think Facebook is a pretty lousy advertising platform and is a waste of time for most marketers, in general. However, in working with and consulting with clients and colleagues, I find myself saying something over and over…
In case you have not noticed, we’re refreshing our websites in preparation for a big 2012. This blog was the first step. We’ve still got some work to do. (For example, the side bar is still not done yet.) But I like the redesign so far. We’ve finally got everything the way we want it.
Internet marketing and social media tend to take up our entire day, week, month, and year. Next thing you know, the years roll by and you may notice that you got nothing accomplished. I don’t like that feeling.
So personally, I set goals for each calendar year and try to focus on a particular aspect of my business. This resets every year.
For me, 2011 is for online audio and video creation.
It is a subject that I think had great potential and is extremely interesting. I’ve invested in (more…)