About Bob McElwain

Bob McElwain, author of "Your Path To Success." How to build ANY business you want, just the way you want it, with only pocket money. http://sitetipsandtricks.com Get ANSWERS. Subscribe to "STAT News" now! mailto:join-stat@lyris.dundee.net Phone: 209-742-6349
Cherish Fear

Many argue it’s best to overcome fears, to put them in their place, so to speak. For me, that place is right out front where I can meet them head on. Embrace them even.

Conventional Formats Work

Books have a lot in common, regardless of the writer, content, or publisher. The covers are of sturdier weight than the inner pages. There’s a title page. Some credits on the reverse side, or on the next page. Maybe a dedication by the author. If appropriate, there’s a table of contents next. If there’s an introduction, it follows. And if there’s an index, it’s at the back of the book.

Can A Single Product Site Make It?

The short answer is no. The difficulty in making this model work is that the cost of generating a sale must be subtracted directly from the net from the single sale. Given multiple products, this cost is distributed over a number of sales, and thus is less per sale. More important, an existing customer is your best prospect for a subsequent sale.

Can You Risk Supporting An Affiliate Program?

There is an over-abundance of affiliate programs available. All eagerly invite you to participate. If you like, visit AssociatePrograms.Com. Allan Gardyne has the most comprehensive list of programs I have seen. Almost 3000 of them at the last count I noted. And he reports thoroughly on each, as information becomes available. (Allan does a super top job in this.)

Build Your Own Demographics

Chances are you do not get as much input from your visitors and subscribers as you would like. When people write and say nice things, it makes you feel great, but it does not provide grand insights. Those who have bad thoughts usually just unsubscribe or leave your site for good.

CRM and Small Business

CRM (Customer Relationships Management) appears to mean different things to different people. I haven’t seen two definitions that really agree. The giant companies have many goals when they speak of CRM. One that annoys me, that continues to crop up, is the notion of immediate software response to customer requests.

Are You Being Fooled By Your Advertising Results?

You may work hard at tracking traffic. You may calculate a CR (Conversion Ratio) as a percentage, maybe accurate to two decimal places. And track several

Beg For Questions; It Works!

On the Services page on my site I ask, “Want a second opinion?” I offer to give one for free regarding a proposed change in your site. Several of my friends issued dire warnings about this offer. They were wrong. It works very, very well.

Art Comes Much Later

One does not hire an architect to design a building until the function of the structure is clearly defined. First one needs to know what will go into it and what is to be accomplished within it. A restaurant business does not have the same needs as those of a machine shop.

Are You Losing The Search Engine Game?

Many wannabe and newbie webmasters tend to view search engines as their salvation. While certainly important, they can not generate the traffic some hope for. Other marketing methods must be employed as well.

Beyond Pure Mini-Sites

In its purest form, a mini-site consists only of a sales pitch and an order form. While many successful marketers believe this is the only way to go, there’s a catch in this approach.

The First Fold Makes Your Site (Or Breaks It)

Visitors to your site are not looking to make a new friend. They don’t want to chat. And they don’t give a darn what you think about anything, least of all your product. They only want to know:

  1. What’s in it for me?
  2. Why should I believe you?
  3. Why should I buy from you?
The Other Side of Headlines

Since as many as 80% of visitors will never finish even the headline on a page, it’s clear we need to put our best effort into creating them. And the headline on our home page is the one that matters most. Here’s why.

The Gold Is In Repeat Business

The success of most retail businesses depends upon generating repeat business. This is as true online as offline. You need to attract people who come to know and trust you, who are confident your advice is sound.

The Make-Break Point: Your USP

Your USP (Universal Selling Proposition) will make or break your business. Let me put this differently. With a great USP, success is nearly assured. Without one, you will be at best, just an also-ran, someone struggling to remain in the race.

The Learning Game and How To Win It

To many, learning is a dirty word. A chore to be avoided at all cost. However, it’s required to succeed in business. But maybe not the kind of learning you think of when you use this term.

The Hits That Matter Most

So you know what hits mean. Unique hits or user sessions, I mean. And you know what CR means. Right? If so, you’re in great shape, for many people don’t. They think they do. But they’ve got it wrong.

The Keyword Lottery and How to Win

If you simply must have a page on your site ranked #1 on some search engine, build one with turnipberries as the keyword. You’ll get a #1 position. And you can proudly show your friends what you have achieved. But if you show it to enough friends, one is bound to ask, “So what?”

Are Mini-Sites The Answer?

Mini-sites come in different flavors but all have one significant element in common. Each site is very tightly focused upon selling a single product or service. No Flash. No graphics. No links out. No banners or advertising of any kind. Nothing that detracts from the site purpose, which is to make the sale.

Are Free Graphics Really Free?

Well, maybe. But let’s define free. Finding anything on the Web takes time. Often it takes a lot of time. So free must somehow be related to how you value your time.

A Good Host Matters, But Be Ready To Move

Hosting services all have pretty much the same inescapable overhead. For example, servers and related gear all cost about the same. And maintenance costs are pretty constant. Thus when you find a low priced host, you know they are doing one or more of the following …

After You Grab Attention, Tighten Your Grip!

We know that something like 80% of visitors will abandon our sites without finishing the headline. And we know that “What’s in this for me?” is the question every visitor asks immediately. We know we must demonstrate there is something here that matters. And we must do so quickly. Within seconds.

Answer Up Right Now!

Online businesses that once thrived continue to fail to our left and right. Yours has no special immunity.

eCommerce: Your Opportunities are Unlimited

Peter Drucker believes ecommerce will be to the Information Revolution what the railroads were to the Industrial Revolution.* To oversimplify, the Industrial Revolution was a time in which tools were produced that replaced people in the manufacture of goods. In the first thirty years, all was devoted to producing known products with machines.